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. 

If you are thinking about numbers, we can think of how many 3, 4, and 5 number combinations we can make but can we apply that to letters and words? Words must have meanings.

Below is a sample list of those who have quoted the above on Twitter without thinking. This confirms what I have been saying for a decade. One person says something and hundreds of others jump on the bandwagon and say it as if it is the Gospel Truth.

Emina McLean @EminaMcLean May 23, 2018

If a child memorises ten words, the child can only read ten words, but if the child learns the sounds of ten letters, the child will be able to read 350 three sound words, 4,320 four sound words and 21,650 five sound words (Kozloff, 2002). #phonics #literacy

Chotte Chanakya @ChanakyaChotte Aug 4, 2021

“If a child memorizes ten words, then the child can read only ten words. But if a child learns the sounds of ten letters, then the child will be able to read #21,650 words. That is the power of phonics”

Alex Frazier @alex_fraz

Mme Lockhart @MmeLockhartLDSB Nov 13, 2021

Why do I teach phonics to my #FSL Ss? Because teaching letter/sound correspondence will enable them to decode words themselves.

Paul Moss @EDmerger Jun 23, 2020

Excellent by Emina on phonics

‘If a child memorizes ten words, the child can read only ten words, but if the child learns the sounds of ten letters, the child will be able to read 350 three-sound words, 4,320 four-sound words, and 21,650 five-sound words.” (Kozloff, 2002)’

Michael Grabarits @mike_sbsl Jan 20, 2019

Hilderbrand Pelzer III @HP3potential Jun 25, 2020

Mrs. McGee’s 4th Grade @McGee4thITES Apr 16, 2021

Shay Anderson @ShayAndersonMrs Aug 30, 2021

C&I @EASD @CIEASD2 Sep 4, 2019

Sherri Barber @sherri_barber Jun 27, 2020

Hannah @Hannah_R213 Jun 1, 2018

Allison G. @gyrlie7373 Dec 22, 2020

Dyslexia Georgia @DyslexiaGeorgia May 24, 2018

TheLiteracyCorner@Knight @LiteracyCorner Sep 12, 2019


Adelaide Dupont said...

And that's still only a third of the words of the English language/lexicon.

And not so very common words either.

Luqman - you are right - words have meanings and must have meanings.

Luqman Michel said...

Thank you for your comment Adelaide Dupont.

I would like any one of the people whose name is listed above to give me the list of the 26,000 words.

As I mentioned I am all for Phonics. However, I will not say that one should not teach kids to memorise Dolch words. After all, the Dolch words are only 220 words and can be easily memorised. They comprise between 50 to 70 % of all words in a kid's book.

For a child to be able to read a word in English he must know or have heard the word previously. Otherwise, he will not be able to read the word.

When they say (as in the image above) teach 10 sounds of letters which 10 words are they speaking about?

For argument's sake, let us say they have included the letter e as one of the 10 letter sounds, which sound represented by the letter e are they talking about?

Is it:

e as in earn, earth
e as in elephant, elbow
e as in eight, eighty
e as in enough, erupt
e as in either
e as in ewe

I believe it is wrong to mislead innocent parents who may already be suffering because their kids are unable to read.

I visited your blog and note you have stopped posting.

Luqman Michel said...

Here is a tweet in response to my question; can anyone please give me a list of the 26,000 per the clip above.

The response is from Marion S who tweeted the same clip as above on 8.3.2022.

marion s @mazst Replying to @luqmanmichel @ManYanaEd and 16 others

It’s an argument against teaching children to memorise words as wholes …it applies to any ten words

Luqman Michel said...

Another Twitter said:
You are not understanding it what they are saying is memorizing words will not get you far if a child learns letter sounds and you know phonics then they will be able to read on their own.It's a play on the teach a person to fish metaphor that uses data about vocabulary.

I don't understand this. Why would they specifically state numbers if that is what they intend to say? Why not just say there will be hundreds of words one can read by learning 10 sounds represented by letters?