Sunday, September 27, 2020

Sound-symbol skills is the foundation of phonics


The following is what Emina McLean had responded to me on an email exchange with her.

We do perhaps disagree that mispronunciation using extraneous phonemes is a/the major cause of instructional casualties and/or The Reading Wars. That's not to say that it doesn't play a role, but in the schools I work in the biggest issue impacting literacy development is that phonics is not taught in any systematic way i.e. students are not learning how speech maps to print in any structured or explicit way and they are not learning the different between speech sounds and alphabet letters. I agree that we should ensure accurate pronunciation, but we also need to get everything right that follows on from that, including ensuring that all schools are following a systematic phonics scope and sequence.

Thursday, September 24, 2020

Can I change your mind about changing minds – Emina McLean (Part 7)


“Do what you want to do and don't care about what other people say." (Rajinikanth)



“ … there is little proof that direct challenges to people’s beliefs work to overturn false beliefs. Rather, the evidence currently points to the entrenching of misinformed beliefs as people strive to protect their identities” (Berentson-Shaw, 2018, p.90).

“It ain't what you do, it's the way that you do it, and that's what gets results.”

Sunday, September 20, 2020

Can I change your mind about changing minds – Emina McLean (Part 6)



Do not give voice to the naysayers. Do not amplify individuals who cling to misinformation, directly or indirectly. Do not amplify problematic or incorrect conceptions about reading instruction. Do not engage in tit-for-tat debates. Do not waste precious time on people who do not want to know better or do better. Do not demean or malign, and do not make people feel less than. Do not make fun of people.

Sadly, we must accept that some people are unlikely to ever change their minds.


Thursday, September 17, 2020

Can I change your mind about changing minds – Emina McLean (Part 5)


For those loud and unpleasant few online who are openly argumentative and wilfully ignorant, can I suggest the mute or block buttons? Amplifying their voices and further cementing their views through engagement is incredibly unhelpful.

Tuesday, September 15, 2020

Can I change your mind about changing minds – Emina McLean (Part 4)



What can we take away from all of this? In all conversations, we need to seek to establish common values and desired outcomes. If our values or desired outcomes do not match theirs, we are wasting our time and theirs. Reframe the intended conversation or choose another candidate. We must consider ways in which we can authentically establish credibility and trust. We must be mindful of our own blind spots and biases. We must avoid an ‘us versus them’ mentality. We must consider how we are communicating. Are we telling people what to do, or worse, telling people they are wrong, or are we seeking to collaborate and develop a shared vision or outcome? Are we turning people off before we have even gotten started?

Sunday, September 13, 2020

Can I change your mind about changing minds – Emina McLean (Part 3)


Who we trust – continued.


If people think you are part of their groupthink, or share their values and attitudes, they are more likely to listen to you. If people think you are not a part of their groupthink, and hold different values, they are likely to reject what you say without paying attention to it. If people perceive you as being on a different side to them, they will reject your expertise, deny your credibility and will not afford your arguments any trust or validity. It is actually that simple and that complex.

Saturday, September 12, 2020

Can I change your mind about changing minds – Emina McLean (Part 2)



           Who we trust

 Liking and looking for information that confirms our views is dangerous in the age of prolific information sharing online, because we start to associate information that makes us feel good with the people who share it, and we pay even less attention to quality or truth of the information, and share it just because people we like or trust have shared it.


Tuesday, September 8, 2020

Unmotivated and disengaged students


I surfed the internet to find articles on disengaged students and here is an extract from one of many articles. All the ones I read had similar points of view but none had the main reason why kids disengage from learning to read.

Friday, September 4, 2020

Dr.Sam Bommarito – Finding the path to end the reading wars.


The following are extracts from a post by Dr.Sam Bommarito and my comments. You may read the whole post here.


It takes a centrist perspective and suggested ways we can use ideas from all sides to finally resolve this decades old debate.

Tuesday, September 1, 2020

Poisoning the well.

The origin of the term lies in well poisoning, an ancient wartime practice of pouring poison into sources of fresh water before an invading army, to diminish the attacking army's strength.

Poisoning the well is analyzed as a tactic to silence an opponent violating his right to put forward arguments on an issue both parties have agreed to discuss at the confrontation stage of a critical discussion. It is concluded that it is a special form of strategic attack used by one party in the argumentation stage of a critical discussion to improperly shut down the capability of the other party for putting forward arguments of the kind needed to properly move the discussion forward.