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ERIC Number: ED317956
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1990
Pages: 17
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
The Good News and Bad News about Whole Language: A Personal Perspective.
Coley, Joan Develin
The biggest concern with whole language instruction lies in ignoring some of the obvious problems in implementation or denying that there could be any problems at all. Problems mentioned by Maryland reading supervisors involve: teacher competence; phonics/spelling/skills instruction; responses of whole language advocates when asked what direction educators should take for children who fail when using the whole language approaches; assessment; and teacher accountability. It is only because people are trying things that they make mistakes. It is not bad to make mistakes; it is only bad not to admit them or to examine their causes. If whole language fails, it will do so because either too many people will do it poorly or it will be done by the staunchest advocates who demand such rigidity that there is no room for the kind of flexibility which research and logic say are essential when educators talk about human learning. The good news about whole language methods includes the following points: (1) there is an insistence on authenticity of real texts and on engaging children in real life functional literacy tasks that matter to them; (2) book reading is up in areas where literature is stressed in the classroom; (3) there is an increasing awareness of the uses of reading and writing together in content instruction; (4) teachers are excited and show enthusiasm about their reading programs; and (5) the kids are excited and enjoy learning and reading in whole language classrooms. (MG)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Maryland