Stupid Phonics Rules

Reply Thu 7 Jun, 2012 08:56 pm
My daughter learned to read when she was 3 and 4 (she was reading so-called "level 2" books by her 4th birthday). She learned with a combination of sounding words out, and learning words in context by seeing them. She played with the letter sounds, but mostly she learned to read with a book in her hand. And she loved it.

Now she is in first grade where she was taught "when to vowels go a-walking the first one does the talking" (and they even have an annoying song for it). I hate these stupid rules and I told her this . She didn't get why I reacted that way at first. But then I took out a piece of paper and starting writing:

- bear
- pear
- piece
- video
- would
- Miguel
- weigh

Funny thing, she read every one of these words correctly in spite of the bogus rule she had been fed. At least this is a teachable moment as far as questioning authority.
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Reply Thu 7 Jun, 2012 10:04 pm
Where are you located?
My daughter learned reading without phonics (we're in southern California)
and just last week a friend of mine told me that she's always had difficulties spelling (as an adult) due to being taught phonics in school. She's from North Dakota originally.
Reply Thu 7 Jun, 2012 10:08 pm
I was taught phonics in passing (nuns, maybe fourth grade, a few weeks).

I didn't mind knowing that. Late 40's, I'd guess, or early '50's.
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Reply Thu 7 Jun, 2012 10:11 pm
I am in Massachusetts. I am not really opposed to phonics, as far as learning letter sounds and sounding out words.

I think that most kids (particularly those who learn on their own) end up doing a combination of techniques. My daughter sounded out words, but by far the most important activity was for her and I to sit with a book and read together.

Stupid rules bother me in any topic. As my kids know I always break rules as a matter of principle.

The thing that really bothers me about phonics is that it has become a political wedge. Politicians have set themselves against educators to put phonics as a mandate in schools (in spite of what educators understand).

Outside of the politicians, I think most educators understand that good education uses a mix of a variety of techniques to meet the needs of diverse students.

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Reply Thu 7 Jun, 2012 10:48 pm
Really osso? My daughter did not learn phonics in catholic school.

Max, then you'll have a bumpy road ahead of you. She's only in first grade. Laughing
I had most problems with math and how it is taught in the U.S. The European way is much faster and more logical and better to understand - and we're talking simple divisions and multiplications here. I tried to
teach my daughter the European way but then she got confused with what her teacher taught her, so I backed off, but they couldn't have found a more complicated way, really.
Reply Thu 7 Jun, 2012 11:12 pm
Laughs. I was in fourth grade in 1950. That would have been St. Nick's. Or maybe I learned that stuff in fifth.

I think what I got of phonics helped me, but it was no concerted program, just some classes off and on. I would say minimal, just explanations. I later studied latin to a paralyzing degree, italian as a kind of early ap thing, german in early university, spanish from pals, and italian on purpose as an old person.

In my memory, phonics was interwoven.
Remember, I'm slightly older than boomers here.
Reply Fri 8 Jun, 2012 04:27 am
I was in fourth grade in the late 70s. We had funny little anthropomorphic monsters for each letter sound, but I learned to read before I started school and these were pretty useless. I learned to read the same way my daughter did. My parents put books in my hands and read with me.

I also remember as a kid realizing the the exercises we were being asked to do were useless. I hated diagramming sentences because at the time I realized they didn't teach me anything about grammar that I was already using proficiently.

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