Here is everything prospective reading teachers need to know in order to introduce phonics to elementary school children in a way that's interesting and effective. This concise handbook shows future teachers how to teach phonics while, at the same time, “filling in the gaps” in their personal knowledge of the subject. Coverage is focused on decoding, the lynchpin skill in literacy development. Part I addresses the relationship between phonics and literacy, and provides a six-chapter tutorial that will test the reader's own level of skill. In Part Two, dozens of classroom activities are arranged in the order in which research has shown phonics knowledge to be acquired. New coverage includes Onsets and Rimes—addressing common phonemic combinations; Numerous fresh, engaging phonics activities that reflect the latest research in the field. For prospective early childhood reading teachers.
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J. Lloyd Eldredge is a professor in the College of Education at the Brigham Young University, where he teaches both graduate and undergraduate literacy courses.
Dr. Eldredge is a former elementary school teacher, school principal, and school superintendent. He has also served as the Utah Director of Chapter I, the Utah Director of Early Childhood Education, and the Utah Director of Elementary Education.
During the past 18 years his research has been focused on phonemic awareness, phonics, a reconceptualization of decoding instruction in the early years of schooling, whole language, oral reading, and the effects of various forms of "assisted reading" strategies (dyad reading, group assisted reading, and taped assisted reading) on young and "at risk" readers. His work is published in such journals as Journal of Educational Research, Reading Research and Instruction, Journal of Reading, The Reading Teacher, Journal of Literacy Research, and Reading Research Quarterly. He is the author of two books on phonics and decoding: Decoding Strategies and Teaching Decoding in Holistic Classrooms.Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:
Reading and writing are complex processes requiring a variety of knowledge sources and thinking abilities. For effective reading and writing, individuals need a working knowledge of encoding/decoding, vocabulary, syntax, anaphora, prosody, and text structure. They need to have experiences with the world in which they live—experiences stored in the brain and used as they construct meaning during the reading and writing process.
Reading involves the ability to translate written language into spoken language (decoding), and writing involves the ability to represent spoken language with the symbols designated for that purpose (encoding). Writers select appropriate words (vocabulary/ schemata), use appropriate punctuation (prosodic features of print), use appropriate sentence patterns (syntax), organize their sentences in some cohesive fashion (anaphora), and organize the entire text in some meaningful way (text structure) to communicate their ideas to readers. Readers use their schemata, vocabulary, prosody, syntax, anaphora, and text structure knowledge to help them understand what writers are trying to communicate. In other words, writers need specific knowledge sources to be able to connect important ideas between sentences and larger units of text, and readers need those same knowledge sources to be able to perceive those idea relationships.
Furthermore, both readers and writers must be able to think. Effective writers use their thinking abilities to entertain, teach, and create visual images from written words. Effective readers use their thinking abilities to read between the lines, perceive relationships among ideas, create their own visual images, and critically evaluate the messages writers create.
Reading is a process involving much more than decoding. However, without the ability to translate the written language into spoken language, readers could not "read." Without the ability to decode, individuals could not access the knowledge sources and thinking abilities needed to construct meaning from written text. In short, the knowledge sources used by readers to engage in literal, inferential, and critical reading are dependent on their ability to decode. Decoding knowledge, therefore, is a critical component in the reading process.
The focus of this text is decoding. The major portion of this book is organized as a self-instruction text to help you understand phonics and its role in the enhancement of decoding processes and overall reading growth. Phonics knowledge is needed for the identification of words both by analogy and context. It is also necessary for "sounding out" both single-syllable and multisyllabic words, and for identifying words by morphemic analysis. Furthermore, existing research reveals that phonics knowledge is needed for extensive word recognition. Since word recognition is necessary for reading fluency, and reading fluency is essential for reading comprehension, phonics knowledge is extremely important.
The latter portion of this book is devoted to phonics teaching. In this portion of the book, you will be introduced to teaching activities that direct children's attention toward written words so they can discover how speech sounds are mapped onto print. These activities are designed to help children learn strategies for identifying written words they don't recognize and, in the process, enhance their word recognition abilities.
This text can be used in college courses, in-service workshops, and independently by individuals who wish to improve their understanding and use of phonics.
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