The American education establishment would like parents to believe that if a child can’t read by the second or third grade, it must be because of something in the child. It just does not occur to them that the whole-word, guided reading method used in American classrooms today is failing to teach our children how to sound out every word on every page.
The fact is that 28 major countries in the world have a higher literacy rate than the United States. In the United States, the total number of functionally illiterate adults increases by approximately 2.25 million every single year. Even more sad, 76 percent of high school students in Detroit schools flunked out this June while other cities like Chicago, Los Angeles, and Houston produced dropout rates from 50 to 60 percent.
The bottom line is this, if we don’t do something to fix the reading rate of American children, then 1.2 million illiterate teens will continue to hit American streets each year.
More and more elementary children who struggle to read
are rapidly growing into
teenagers who are still struggling to read.
Too many folks today do not have a solid grasp
on what learning to read involves.
Learning to read should never involve teaching a child to guess at a word!
Learning to read should involve teaching a child:
1) how to sound out a word from left to right
2) that he can know for certain what the word on the page is.
Unfortunately, far too many teachers believe that word guessing is necessary and, consequently, their reading groups include a whole gamut of reading approaches to promote word guessing.
For example, here are other approaches that are presently used in our classrooms to back up the word guessing game:
1) Looking for more prompts or clues
2) Doing “picture walks” or guessing at words or phrases by predicting what might happen next
3) Having whole groups of children “whisper” an entire book to themselves using PVC whisper phones
4) Simply telling a child to “Try that again.”
5) Asking a child questions such as: “Does that make sense?”
6) Asking a child questions such as: “What part of the word do you know?
7) Asking a child questions such as: “What does the word start with?”
8) Asking a child questions such as “Have you ever seen a word that looks like that?
9) Asking a child questions such as: “Does the picture on the page give you a clue?
10) Telling a child he is a good reader, when, in actuality, he cannot read a great many words at his grade level.
Moms, Dads, Grandpas, and Grandmas, let’s define exactly what is meant by reading:
Reading is when a child can survive in a fast-paced, high-tech American classroom, look at a page of text, effortlessly sound out every word he encounters, gain a basic understanding of what he has read, be able to accurately draw conclusions from the facts given, and comprehensively make inferences from all the details specified.
A child who can read should have the ability to read selected text accurately, smoothly, effortlessly, and with appropriate expression and meaning.
Moms, Dads, your child does not have to join the statistics for struggling readers. It’s true, some children are reading disabled, but the majority of children struggling in reading are not learning disabled, they just haven’t been taught to read using a reliable systematic, step-by-step phonics approach.
Parents, if your child is struggling in reading, for less than $10 you can change his reading future.
Please check us out – Candy 4WAY Phonics — a simple, affordable, step-by-step systematic 4WAY Phonics Curriculum that can change a struggling reader into a reader!
Carol Kay, President