Uncategorized

Misty muddies the waters – again!

On September 17th Misty Adoniou wrote a piece for The Conversation entitled ‘New phonics test will do nothing to improve Australian children’s literacy’. Although I’ve written a couple of times before about Ms Adoniou’s somewhat jaundiced view of phonics here and here, I thought this time I’d look more closely at the arguments she puts forward.… Continue reading Misty muddies the waters – again!

Uncategorized

3 things you wanted to know about the simple present

Ever wondered why when you’re teaching verb tenses that the simple present isn’t about the present? As readers of this blog will know by now, I’m keen on the idea of threshold concepts. A threshold concept, as defined by Glynis Cousins, is ‘central to the mastery of one’s subject’, especially because it enables teachers to ‘make… Continue reading 3 things you wanted to know about the simple present

Uncategorized

A good time to start using letter names

Here’s another one I heard in the classroom recently. A teacher was teaching her children the sound /ow/, as in ‘cow’, and a member of the class came up to the whiteboard to write the word. After the child had written the first spelling and said the sound, the teacher told the child to write… Continue reading A good time to start using letter names

Uncategorized

‘Tying thine ear to no tongue but thine own’ (Henry IV, Pt I)

A subject I keep coming back to is the ‘nature’ of the English writing system. I keep doing this because lack of understanding of how the sounds of the English language relate to the spelling system causes so many, (particularly) academics, to arrive at the most absurd and reactionary conclusions about how to teach it.… Continue reading ‘Tying thine ear to no tongue but thine own’ (Henry IV, Pt I)