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Re: Re: Phonics Flawed Mary DeFalco

Posted By: Anthony DeFalco on August 28, 2020
John you stated, “ The reader might be sitting quietly in a field reading a text on a skill she wants to acquire. Or a poem she takes to heart. The book has no pictures. There is no "mode" in play, she is simply reading a text. She needs to decode the text and grasp the meaning the author intended, first and foremost.”

John, the reader has to be relating to the text in some way or s/he wouldn’t be “taking it to heart.” Since the book has no pictures she is imagining the setting; she can’t get a complete picture without a photo. Again, I am stating the obvious, decoding is more than sounding out a string of letters.

I was sitting with my grandson in second grade listening to him read a book from the library. He encountered several words that initially he didn’t know. I told him to skip the word and read to the end of the sentence and think what the word might be. With the initial consonant only along with semantics and syntax, he reread the sentence fluently. Other times when he didn’t know a word, he substituted a meaningful word and then self-corrected; he was using meaning clues. Only once did I tell him the word because iI knew it that it was not in his hearing vocabulary.

John, you stated that I constantly ignore that “we advocates of Systematic Direct Phonics First have the correct position,” I beg to differ and I repeat, you can’t grasp the author’s meaning without being able to relate to it in some way.“… namely grasping of the author's meaning as the primary foundation of the experience.

John, how can a reader grasp the author’s meaning if the reader can not relate to the text?!” e.g., Give a child in a rural area of Neb., a book about city life when the child never was in a town larger than 800 people. That child would not be able to understand the concept of subways, squad cars, elevated trains, apartment buildings even the concept of a skyscraper.
Tell a student about the movement of the “front line” in a war. “Front line” is meaningless. The student can only try an imagine a rope or wire moving ahead of the warriors. Give a student a text about the ocean if s/he has never seen an ocean or large body of water or never went swimming, the student could not begin to imagine what it would be like to be pulled by an under current. Background knowledge needs to be developed and related in some way to the reader.

Once again, John, it is evident that we shall never have a meeting of minds.
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 Phonics Flawed Mary DeFalco by Anthony DeFalco on August 22, 2020
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