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Professor Anne Castles on 'sight words'...

 
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debbie



Joined: 08 Oct 2007
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Location: UK

PostPosted: Sat Jul 02, 2016 11:28 am    Post subject: Professor Anne Castles on 'sight words'... Reply with quote

This guest blog posting has led to some interest via Twitter - in fact, 'sight word learning' is always a hot topic and often a misunderstood one!

The first thing to clarify is the definition of 'sight words' as it can mean different things to different people!

Do read the full post and also the replies (so far, John Walker has replied as have I):

http://readoxford.org/guest-blog-are-sight-words-unjustly-slighted

Quote:
Guest Blog: Are sight words unjustly slighted?

July 1, 2016

What is meant by ‘sight word reading’? It’s a term that seems to mean different things to different people, leading to misunderstandings and confusion. We asked Professor Anne Castles to share with us what the evidence says about sight word reading.


Phonics first and phonics fast. Few would now question this mantra or challenge the view that explicit phonics teaching is at the core of any effective initial reading program. But I have noticed an unfortunate side effect of the increasing acceptance of the primacy of phonics. This is the belief that any literacy activity in the early school years that is not phonics must be harmful to children’s learning. This is understandable: the battle to reinstate phonics has been hard fought and none of us wants to see its benefits diluted. But I think it is important that we not let the phonics focus cloud our judgments about other methods that may further improve reading outcomes for children.

The area where I have particularly noticed this tendency is in relation to the teaching of “sight words”. The view of many seems to be that phonics and sight words are sworn enemies: they, literally, cannot be in the same room together. Teaching sight words is viewed as not only ineffective but also dangerous, causing children to become confused and setting them up with bad reading habits that interfere with their ongoing phonics instruction. But what is the evidence here?

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debbie



Joined: 08 Oct 2007
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 02, 2016 11:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm cross-referencing this topic with another thread featuring the topic of 'sight words':

http://phonicsinternational.com/forum/viewtopic.php?p=2396#2396
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