Australian curriculum · Barry McGaw · phonics versus whole language

Reading experts go in to bat for phonics in Australia

A new skirmish in the so-called ‘reading wars’ has once again broken out. This time in Australia! A group of reading experts has written to the Education Minister Julia Gillard to complain that draft recommendations on the shape of the new English curriculum have omitted significant elements from previous recommendations made in an initial advice… Continue reading Reading experts go in to bat for phonics in Australia

good preparation for reading · speaking and listening · Vocabulary in the early years

Now let us praise Jim Rose

The recently published Rose Report into the primary curriculum draws praise from Vicky Tuck, principal of Cheltenham Ladies College. She believes it highlights a problem educationists have been grappling with for years: ‘word poverty’.‘Word poverty’ refers to the huge deficit in some children’s language skills in comparison with other children. Why would this be? In… Continue reading Now let us praise Jim Rose

billions of pounds spent · bureaucratic mindset · innovation stifled · Policy Exchange

Billions wasted on literacy strategy says Policy Exchange report

While some of you are pondering the expenses claims put forward by Ed Balls, the Secretary of State for Children, School and Families, and his ‘chippy defence of the SATs fiasco‘, you may want to know what the Policy Exchange report I posted about the other day had to say about Government policy during the… Continue reading Billions wasted on literacy strategy says Policy Exchange report

Adult illiteracy · basic skills in reading and maths · recession

Can’t Read? No job!

More news from npr. The recession in the the USA is causing huge anxiety for those whose reading skills are less than adequate. Apparently, the unemployed are filling up adult literacy programmes. It’s a particularly desperate time for those with only basic language (for which read ‘elementary reading’) and maths skills. One ‘Friends of Literacy’… Continue reading Can’t Read? No job!

falling standards · government failure · literacy · rising marks

‘Rising Marks, Falling Standards’ – a report from Policy Exchange

Thanks to Susan Godsland of the RRF for the heads-up on a new report that launches a blistering attack on the Government’s education policy. It’s by the Policy Exchange, ‘an independent, non-partisan educational charity’, and it’s called: ‘Rising Marks, Falling Standards: an investigation into literacy, numeracy and science in primary and secondary schools’ by Tom… Continue reading ‘Rising Marks, Falling Standards’ – a report from Policy Exchange

Scripps National Spelling Bee · spelling

‘Child Spelling Prodigy Takes to World Stage’

Here’s an interesting success story from npr news station in the USA – ‘Child Spelling Prodigy Takes to World Stage’ . Fourteen-year-old Yulkendy Valdez went to live in the United States less than four years ago. At the time, she had no English. Her interviewer Michel Martin describes her as having learnt English faster than… Continue reading ‘Child Spelling Prodigy Takes to World Stage’