ERIC Number: ED403550
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1994-Jun
Reference Count: N/A
Reply to the Ministries' Reactions to the Canadian Psychological Association's Position Paper on Beginning Reading Instruction.
Simner, Marvin L.
In response to a position paper that called upon the ministry of education in each Canadian province to provide a balanced selection to offerings on the province's authorized list of language arts textbooks, several ministries claimed that a balanced approach to teaching reading was being followed. A letter received from Alberta Education even stated that all of the whole-language programs approved for use in that province included explicit instruction in phonics (particularly the Journeys, Networks, and Impressions programs). Yet many Canadian parents, columnists, and academics believe otherwise, and the Reading and Literacy Institute of Alberta has called for more phonics instruction in the schools. The phonics and phonemic awareness exercises in such programs as the one developed by B. A. Blachman are effective in helping children to become successful readers and should be part of all beginning reading programs. Phonics instruction in the whole language programs provides children with one additional context clue (sound) that they then can employ together with other context clues, while phonics instruction in phonemic awareness programs offers children an important primary strategy for word identification that can be employed by itself. Ministries of education should take the following actions: (1) change curriculum guidelines to include the need for phonemic awareness training; (2) encourage Canadian textbook publishers to supplement their whole-language programs with phonemic awareness training exercises; (3) encourage teacher education institutions to provide prospective teachers with information on phonemic awareness training; and (4) encourage classroom teachers to use phonemic awareness exercises during normal reading instruction. (Contains 61 references.) (RS)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Canadian Psychological Association, Ottawa (Ontario).
Identifiers - Location: Canada