Thursday, November 30, 2023

Do educators know the importance of foundational skills?


On 30.11.23 Cameron Carter @CRCarter313 Tweeted the following:

Every educator knows the importance of foundational skills, and of building student engagement and ownership while teaching these skills.

I then Tweeted as follows:

'Every educator knows the importance of foundational skills'.

This is Bullshit! Stop spreading disinformation.

Dr. Sam Bommarito @DoctorSam7 then replied to my Tweet.

? Sorry you feel that way.

I responded as follows:

Luqman Michel @luqmanmichel

Does anyone know the importance of foundational skills? More than 100 years ago educators said that initial input is paramount. Educators today teach kids wrongly and then blame phonics as the culprit.

Unfortunately, Dr. Sam is one of them who does not understand or refuses to acknowledge that the problem with kids being unable to read is not phonics but the wrong way it is being taught. If he and other educators know that foundational skills are important then we won’t have more than 30% of kids leaving schools unable to read at a proficient level. There are educators like Andrew Johnson who seem to think that this level of proficiency is acceptable because we have maintained the level since 1972.

Dr. David Kilpatrick in his book Equipped for Reading Success wrote the following:

In a large study conducted by scientists from the University of New York at Albany, researchers were able to reduce the number of children who require ongoing remediation from the national average of 30% to about 2%. A study by researchers at Florida State University showed how the most severely reading-disabled students could reach grade level – and stay there- using a surprisingly brief intervention program. These examples question the inevitability of widespread reading failure.

My question to Dr. Sam and his cohorts is how were the kids in the study above and my students able to read within a short period of intervention? Were the foundational skills taught wrongly?

In `1913 Thorndike said that initial input is important. By initial input, he meant foundational skills. If this is not taught correctly a majority of kids are confused. Fortunately, many of them somehow figure out how to read leaving behind about 20% of kids predisposed to shutting down/ disengaging from learning to read when confused.

The only sure thing in life is death. Let us not try and enrich ourselves by promoting our products at the expense of distraught parents.

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