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Feedback following a training event including in-school CPD

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Joined: 08 Oct 2007
Posts: 2577
Location: UK

PostPosted: Mon Oct 15, 2012 11:19 am    Post subject: Feedback following a training event including in-school CPD Reply with quote

I was so pleased to receive this lovely feedback from a literacy coordinator in the Isle of Wight (I have also posted this message on the 'Feedback' forum):

Hi Debbie,

I hope that this email finds you both well. You may recall travelling
down the the IW in January to deliver some phonic training to us. I
just wanted to contact you to say what a positive impact the training
and the Phonics International resources that you gifted us has had on
teaching and learning in school.

I have been determined to develop and improve the teaching of phonics
beyond Yr1 for some time but without your help I was finding it difficult to
know where to start.

We now have daily phonic sessions running in all classes up to Yr 3 and I've delivered CPD to teaching staff in KS2 and all our TAs in order to extend the programme up to Yr6.

We've also held an information evening for parents and initiated the 'book bag' routine.

What is really lovely is that as I walk around school I see more and more 'alphabetic codes' appearing and I hear discussions taking place about different graphemes and the phonemes they represent.

Personally I've learnt a huge amount about spelling, it's like learning my own language for the very first time!

This week we have hosted a visit for GTP students training on the Island.
Their focus was the teaching of phonics and early reading skills.
During our feedback session they were very complimentary about the
teaching and learning they saw taking place and in particular the
enthusiasm with which phonic lessons were being delivered and

I am so very grateful for your visit and just wanted you to know what
a positive impact your resources are having on our children's learning.

Kind regards

I replied with a comment about the level of phonics critics in the media and...


Hi Debbie,

Thanks for your reply. It sounds like you're very busy. I really don't
understand the anti phonics argument. All I can think is that it comes
down to ignorance or perhaps from people who aren't really involved
with teaching children how to read and write.

I think back to all the years that I 'fudged' spelling questions with
children because I didn't know enough to give an explanation about
the letter patterns.

Now when we spell a word I whip out the alphabetic code and we work it out together. We were working on the 'ge' grapheme last week and George put his hand up and said 'Just like my name'. I can honestly say I'd never realised why 'George' was spelt the way it is until that moment, when we segmented it together!

Pay no attention to the critics and keep up the good work because the
results are amazing.

It would be great to meet up when you're on the island if possible.
Let me know when you have the dates. I'm also happy to give a personal
testimony at your twighlight training if it helps spread the word!

Kind regards

Please note that not only did I provide initial training, the literacy coordinator then continued with professional development within the school. This is, of course, what should happen!

My 'aside' comment to everyone:

There ARE so many phonics critics grabbing the attention of the media that it is really important for those of us who have seen the huge improvements from our synthetic phonics teaching (for reading and spelling) to share this information.

Anecdotes provide the human interest - but it is also important that we have evidence in the form of pre- and post- synthetic phonics teaching with reading and spelling tests.

Thank you so much to everyone who takes the time and trouble to contact me with feedback!
Debbie Hepplewhite
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