Tuesday, March 29, 2022

The failure to meaningfully address illiteracy in our schools feels intentional. (Part 1)


On 27.3.2022 I read the following tweet.

Beanie @Beanie0597

 “To suggest the best education minds in America cannot figure out how to conquer or at least reduce illiteracy in our nation’s schools is nonsense.”

Beanie had the following link which said:

The failure to meaningfully address illiteracy in our schools feels intentional. For decades, reading performance in our public schools has been less than impressive.

This is interesting as I have felt this way for a long time. It is my opinion that most of the researchers and heads of research institutions and universities are the puppets of the powers that be. How is it possible for man to be sent to the moon but not able to reduce illiteracy?

Sunday, March 27, 2022

Dehaene - How the brain learns to read?


This is a continuation of my previous post found here

Peter Blenkinsop, kept insisting that I listen to Prof. Stanislas Dehaene video and educate him on how a child learns to read.

Why Peter, who calls himself a consultant, wants me to explain it to him is beyond me but I shall try and describe what I have understood from the video. 

Peter asked me to listen to minute 14.30 of the video above which says:

Saturday, March 26, 2022

How to say sorry and move on - argument on sight words


I have always found it easy to say sorry when I have made a mistake and move on. Once I say sorry the matter will not be dwelt on.

Here is a recent example of a mistake I made on Twitter and when was informed by an education consultant, Peter Blenkinsop, I apologised and moved on.

Friday, March 25, 2022

Excuses instead of fixing the problem - Dylan Wiliam


This is a Twitter discussion where we were discussing whether to teach letter names. Dylan Wiliam joined in in response to my tweet as follows.

On 21.3.2022 I tweeted that

Singapore, Macau and Hong Kong were in the top 4 positions in the PISA test while the UK was in 13th followed by the US. Why are we arguing about teaching letter names when it takes just a short time to teach the alphabet song?

Dylan Wiliam @dylanwiliam Replying to @luqmanmichel @ManYanaEd and 16 others

I suppose you realize that this is an example of a "post hoc ergo propter hoc" argument. And until we control for the vastly greater amount of private tutoring in the jurisdictions that you cite as performing higher on PISA, such arguments are just silly.

Wednesday, March 23, 2022

Letter names or letter sounds


There has been a heated Twitter discussion on when to teach letter names.

When the British came to Malaya they taught our teachers to teach us letter names first and then teach us letter sounds. This is what I practice in teaching my dyslexic students.

They taught us only one of the sounds of letters. They taught us A for apple; b for ball; C for cat and so on.

Sunday, March 20, 2022

Let’s just address the issue of extraneous sounds


I tweeted about Timothy Shanahan asking me for evidence (research reports) to show that consonants should not be taught with extraneous sounds.

The following Tweets ensued.

Peter Blenkinsop @ManYanaEd Replying to @luqmanmichel @ReadingShanahan and 14 others

It must be ok to ask for evidence?

Luqman Michel Replying to @ManYanaEd @ReadingShanahan and 14 others

Yes, when it is something that cannot be thought of logically. Tell me, Peter, do you really need evidence to teach consonants without extraneous sounds. Where do I look for such reports? I can give you many personal anecdotes but you won't accept them.


Peter Blenkinsop @ManYanaEd

I would expect others to be using the system you use. That is some evidence.

Saturday, March 19, 2022

Can learning 10 sounds of letters enable kids to read about 26,000 words


I believe Kozloff has been misquoted.

I would be grateful if any of those who have quoted the above to please explain where they got this idea that learning 10 sounds of letters will enable kids to read about 26,000 words (720+ 4320+ 21,600 = 26640 words.) 

I am all for phonics but I won't stoop so low and mislead readers.

How can teachers like Emina McLean share such quotes without thinking. How will it affect parents and other teachers?

This is another case of the blind leading the blind. 

Thursday, March 17, 2022

Do we need to teach vowel blend ai


Do we have to teach the vowel blend ai to read the word rain? I believe it is not necessary. Here are a few Tweets and my response.

Jeffrey Bowers @jeffrey_bowers Mar 15 Replying to @mazst  @Spell2Read,   @ManYanaEd, @jeffrey_bowers, @ReadingShanahan, and a few others.

 Most of the kids in that video could not.  A few kids could.  But the lesson is useful for all.  How does a child get to the point of recognising "rain" in an analytic phonics context?  The child knows rain before lesson, and learns its spelling, GPCs, and related words in lesson

Londonjohn @londonjohn9

But have these pupils reached the extended code of /ai/? If they haven't, they'll dissolve when they meet rain.

Friday, March 11, 2022

Rethinking how to teach high frequency words Podcast.


                     Stacy Hurst, an assistant professor of reading at Southern Utah University

I listened to a podcast by some Science of Reading advocates and believe they have become desperate to promote their products. Listen to the podcast here and determine for yourself. The following are some extracts and my comments.

At minute 8.03: There is a limit as to how many words can be memorised – I heard 2,000 words.

Thursday, March 10, 2022

Broken Record (Part 2)


This is a continuation of my Twitter discussion with Marion S. LINK

Luqman Michel Replying to @mazst @TheReadingApe and @GeoffEdinspire

Yes, the word 'with'. When do you teach your students to read this word?

My students learn to read this word in their second lesson and read many sentences containing that word.

Wednesday, March 9, 2022

Broken record


On 7.3.2022, The Reading Ape @TheReadingApe tweeted the following:

'...many first grade readers who struggle to master orthographic-phonological coding and read laboriously while they are doing so, may be more on track for becoming independent readers than readers who memorize words and disregard the alphabetic principle.' (Rayner et al., 2012).

I then tweeted as follows:

If kids learn the alphabetic principle should they not memorise words?

What is wrong in memorising words and at the same time learning the alphabetic principle?

Tuesday, March 8, 2022

The reading brain - Mark Seidenberg


This is a continuation of the Tweets by Alanna Maurin. I am posting this now as, yesterday, I listened to a short video by Mark Seidenberg where he says that there are no multiple ways that the brain can be structured to read.

“Educators have a pretty firm belief that every kid is different and that the challenge of reading is to be able to tailor your instruction for the needs of the child, and their learning style, the way that they happen to learn best. We don’t find that when we study the computational, and behavioral, and neural systems that underlie reading” (Mark Seidenberg) LINK.

As far as decoding is concerned, the above video should have put paid to the frequently quoted saying ‘One size doesn’t fit all’. 

Monday, March 7, 2022

A fictitious tale by a SoR proponent Dr. Brittney Bills


The following is a Twitter discussion between Dr. Brittney Bills and Alanna Maurin in December 2020. I did not take part in the discussion.

Dr. Brittney Bills @Brittne79358065

“Imagine a nation where 99% of our third graders read at or above grade level and where our high schools are dominated not by students who are discouraged and frustrated but by confident young adults who are preparing to fulfill their life mission.” - Denise Eide

Saturday, March 5, 2022

Flash cards - Twitter Discussion with Elizabeth Brown

                                                      Flash card for teaching Dolch Words

I learned quite a bit from Elizabeth Brown on a long Twitter discourse. Here are somethings she tweeted and my comments:

Elizabeth Brown @PhonicsMom Replying to @luqmanmichel @ReadSimplified and 2 others

With 100% whole word methods, they used flashcards for everything. Now with balanced literacy, the predictable readers are used for new words, but they also send home hundreds of high frequency sight words to be memorized with flash cards.

Thursday, March 3, 2022

Students with Reading Difficulties (OHRC)

Recently there has been many tweets on ‘Ontario Human Rights Commission Executive Summary’.

What is new in that summary? NOTHING!

Is there anything in the summary that has not been said before? NOTHING!

The term used by them is ‘Students with reading difficulties’.

Elsewhere they have terms such as:

i.                     At risk children

ii.                   Unskilled readers

iii.                 Child with special education needs

iv.                 Etc.

Tuesday, March 1, 2022

Blind leading the blind on Orthographic Mapping


On 16.2.2022 Maggie Downie Tweeted the following:

Maggie Downie 💙#takebackbritain@MaggieDownie Replying to @JoAnneGross1 and @ReadingShanahan'

'Also, OM (Orthographic Mapping) occurs when readers view a written word while hearing it pronounced' (Maggie quoting Ehri)

This is bizarre.  This is Look and Say stuff.