Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Visual memorising - My Twitter conversation - Part 4 -

Another lady, Pam Kastner @liv2learn joined in with the following tweet.

Apr 13Replying to @1in5advocacy @luqmanmichel and 12 others 

1. English is an alphabetic orthography. It is not logographic. We cannot visually memorize every word in the English language nor should we "teach" any word in that manner. We must use grapheme-phoneme correspondences to orthographically map words storing them as mental...

Luqman Michel @luqmanmichel  Apr 13 

I believe that is a truism. No one ever asked that all words should be taught to be visually memorised. 

What is the big fuss about learning the Dolch words by memory when Chinese children have to learn 600 words in the first year in school?
There was a tweet from Sue Lloyd as follows:

@suelloydtcrw· Apr 13 Replying to @luqmanmichel @debbiehepp and 5 others

We know, @luqmanmichel, the damage that can be done to many children when they try and memorise words by shape. It is much easier, and far more effective, to teach all children to read words through the process of decoding. Let's teach the alphabetic code like the code it is.

My comment now: I had explained how I taught all my students to memorise the 220 frequently used Dolch words by Rote memory in less than 4 months. This is the time I take to teach my students to be able to read using phonics and memorising Dolch words. As such I could not understand why these ladies kept saying visually memorised and memorise words by shape.

Then I recalled that I had read articles on visual memory when I first started learning about dyslexia.
I surfed the internet and found one such article. This is probably what these ladies are complaining about. I have taken a few extracts from the article found here.

Word shapes can help with visual recall.

You can even adapt this into a classroom activity.
A classroom word shapes activity

The exercises demonstrated during this webinar should help weaker spellers to:

    appreciate patterns
    make links
    use a variety of strategies
    build up visual awareness
    make words with friends.

The following six examples are how one has to visually memorise the 6 words shown below. 

To me, memorising words through shapes is insane.

I like to guess which word is which shape, Which - No 5; with - No 3; hoped - No 6; hopped No. 1; pet - No. 2 and bet - No 4.

I don't want to figure out how long it will take me to memorise these shapes and relate them to the words.

Note: I teach my students to learn the High Frequency words by rote memory. This is similar to how we memorised the Times table. I teach them to spell out the words using letter names and then say the word. Of course all children would have heard all the 220 Dolch words in the daily lives. 

An example will make this clear. A - n - d- 'and', A-n- d - 'and'. Repeat this 3 times and then move onto the next word. Before long the kid will not only be able to read the word by sight but will be able to spell the word too.

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