From FreedomProject Media:
The educational quackery that passes for reading instruction in America's public schools today just suffered another major blow. In a stinging rebuke of the methodology that has handicapped countless millions of Americans for generations, Emily Hanford at NPR hit a home run for the cause of literacy. The question is whether it will make any difference.
The article, headlined “Why Millions Of Kids Can't Read, And What Better Teaching Can Do About It,” focuses on the public schools in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. Just a few years ago, only a bit over half of third graders were scoring proficient on the state reading test. Now, about 85 percent of kindergarten children are meeting or exceeding the benchmark literacy score. In some schools, it's 100 percent.
What changed? The district started teaching teachers how to teach reading the correct way — using phonics and teaching children the relationship between letters and the sounds they represent. As incredible as it might sound to normal people, there are literally professional educators all across America, many with a PhD, who insist this is unneeded or even harmful to children.
Some of the anecdotes shared in the NPR piece illustrate the problem perfectly. At a professional-development day at one of the district's schools, “teachers were talking about how students should attack words in a story,” Hanford recounted. “When a child came to a word she didn't know, the teacher would tell her to look at the picture and guess.”
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