econintersect.com
       
  

FREE NEWSLETTER: Econintersect sends a nightly newsletter highlighting news events of the day, and providing a summary of new articles posted on the website. Econintersect will not sell or pass your email address to others per our privacy policy. You can cancel this subscription at any time by selecting the unsubscribing link in the footer of each email.



posted on 31 May 2016

Is There A Right Way To Learn To Read?

from The Conversation

-- this post authored by Emily Harrison, Birmingham City University

Phonics teaching in UK primary schools is rightly recognised as giving children the essential building blocks needed to become successful readers. Indeed, we are so pro-phonics that little is done to raise awareness about other methods, even those which might be seen as an accompaniment to phonics, not a replacement for it.

Schools tend to stick to what they know and, with more and more demand being put on teachers to raise standards and achieve excellent Ofsted reports, there is little in the way of "free time" to be allocated to testing out new methods, even those aimed at children who have had phonics training but who still have reading difficulties.

Phonics is based on training children's "segmental phonological awareness" (that is, raising their awareness of letters and sounds and teaching them segmenting and blending skills). But there is a second part to phonological awareness known as "suprasegmental phonology". It refers to the rhythmic components of spoken language that accompany the segmental elements, such as stress placement, intonation or pitch, and timing.

Phonics teaching in practice.

There is a growing body of evidence which supports the idea that awareness of, or sensitivity to, these rhythmic components is related to reading at various levels, including reading acquisition, comprehension and, more interestingly, reading difficulties. What this means is that children who have reading difficulties also tend to have poor speech rhythm sensitivity - and the better a child's speech rhythm sensitivity is, the better their reading skills tend to be.

Surely, if we can somehow improve childrens' speech rhythm sensitivity, their reading skills will also improve, right?

During my time at Coventry University, this question interested us enormously, yet there was no intervention that had attempted to train children on their awareness of speech rhythm as a possible way of enhancing literacy skills. So we set about designing a set of materials to help children gain better awareness of these rhythmic elements of spoken language.

We wanted the intervention to be suitable for children who were non-verbal - that is, children who do not speak, whether this is due to a disorder or just shyness - as well as children across a range of ability levels, so we decided on a picture and sound format, where children were presented with a picture card and a corresponding prerecorded audio sound for each item. This meant that children didn't have to give a verbal response and that the format of delivery was repetitive to ensure some level of understanding between sessions. The intervention was designed to run for ten weeks, giving time for pre and post-test assessments to be administered within a school term.

We ran two experiments, one with reception children, age four to five years of age, who were just starting to learn to read - and one with children in year three, aged seven to eight years, who were falling behind in their reading. In each study, the intervention was compared to a traditional phonological awareness intervention and a control.

Reading rhythms

The results were very promising. In both the beginners and the older struggling readers, the speech rhythm intervention resulted in significantly greater gains in reading than the control intervention. This means that speech rhythm training is effective both at the beginning of reading tuition and once children have already received some formal training.

One of the things that interested us most is that the children in the second study were categorised as being struggling readers. For the speech rhythm intervention to work for these children is heartening and important. It means that this could be an alternative way in to teaching these children the skills they need to become successful readers.

Two papers describing similar findings, supporting the notion of speech rhythm training in struggling readers, have also since been published. However, there are no other studies to date which have investigated the effects of such training methods for beginner readers.

What our research adds is that speech rhythm training can also be effective in children who have yet to receive formal reading tuition, meaning that it can be implemented effectively from the start of primary education.

This is an exciting prospect for reading researchers - and it opens many doors for further investigation. It also has the potential to significantly improve reading instruction in schools - and will in fact soon be doing so, through a new programme which incorporates this speech rhythm sensitivity training.

The ConversationEmily Harrison, Lecturer in Applied Psychology, Birmingham City University

This article was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article.

>>>>> Scroll down to view and make comments <<<<<<

Click here for Historical News Post Listing










Make a Comment

Econintersect wants your comments, data and opinion on the articles posted.  As the internet is a "war zone" of trolls, hackers and spammers - Econintersect must balance its defences against ease of commenting.  We have joined with Livefyre to manage our comment streams.

To comment, using Livefyre just click the "Sign In" button at the top-left corner of the comment box below. You can create a commenting account using your favorite social network such as Twitter, Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn or Open ID - or open a Livefyre account using your email address.



You can also comment using Facebook directly using he comment block below.





Econintersect Contributors


search_box

Print this page or create a PDF file of this page
Print Friendly and PDF


The growing use of ad blocking software is creating a shortfall in covering our fixed expenses. Please consider a donation to Econintersect to allow continuing output of quality and balanced financial and economic news and analysis.


Take a look at what is going on inside of Econintersect.com
Main Home
Analysis Blog
The Expected Effects of Petitions to Improve the Monetary System
Energy and Falling Productivity
News Blog
How Britain Owes Its Immigrants A Debt Of Gratitude
Super Mario, The Timeless Bestseller
Explainer: The Nine Swing States That Will Decide The Next US President
How Long Does Apple Support Older IPhone Models
What We Read Today 25 September 2016
Dangerous Ultra Pure Water
Job Employment Tenure Down
Mobile Payments Promise To Improve Financial Accessibility In Mexico
Aging Populations May Mean Lower Economic Growth
Urban Rebound Causes Large Shift In Lower Credit Borrowers To Seek The Outer Suburbs
Infographic Of The Day: How Oil Is Formed
Early Headlines: Japan Needs Fed Hike, Mexico Tanker Ablaze, 1.5C Limit Within 10 Yrs, Africa's Growth Problems, Did US Destroy Syria Truce?, Merkel: No Help For DB And More
Americans Wary Of Drone Delivery
Investing Blog
Monday Morning Call 26 September
We're Back Here We Started
Opinion Blog
Heading For A Fall? With Summer Over, Europe Must Face Up To Its Mounting Crises
What If We're In A Depression But Don't Know It?
Precious Metals Blog
War On Cash Turns To $20, $50, And $100 Bills
Live Markets
23Sep2016 Market Close: US Indexes Close Lower As Crude Prices Slip, Fed Lowers Economic Growth Prospects, Indicators Melting Into Bearish Territory
Amazon Books & More






.... and keep up with economic news using our dynamic economic newspapers with the largest international coverage on the internet
Asia / Pacific
Europe
Middle East / Africa
Americas
USA Government



Crowdfunding ....






























 navigate econintersect.com

Blogs

Analysis Blog
News Blog
Investing Blog
Opinion Blog
Precious Metals Blog
Markets Blog
Video of the Day
Weather

Newspapers

Asia / Pacific
Europe
Middle East / Africa
Americas
USA Government
     

RSS Feeds / Social Media

Combined Econintersect Feed
Google+
Facebook
Twitter
Digg

Free Newsletter

Marketplace - Books & More

Economic Forecast

Content Contribution

Contact

About

  Top Economics Site

Investing.com Contributor TalkMarkets Contributor Finance Blogs Free PageRank Checker Active Search Results Google+

This Web Page by Steven Hansen ---- Copyright 2010 - 2016 Econintersect LLC - all rights reserved