The debate has raged for years: what's the best way to reach reading - phonics or the whole language method? Next time on To the Best of Our Knowledge, why both techniques are flawed. Also, a parent's guide to raising lifelong learners. And, what children give up when they learn to talk
Diane McGuiness is a cognitive psychologist at the University of South Florida and the author of "Why Our Children Can't Read and What We Can Do about It." She tells Jim Fleming that both phonics and the whole language method are flawed; kids should be taught to recognize the sounds in words and then the various spellings of those sounds. Also, Lucy Calkins, founding director of the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project at Columbia University, is the author of "Raising Lifelong Learners." She doesn't think much of McGuiness' prescription and tells Steve Paulson that children should be taught to love good books and conversation.SEGMENT 2:
Tamara Thornton is a cultural historian at the State University of New York at Buffalo, and the author of "Handwriting in America." She tells Judith Strasser that ideas about handwriting have always reflected wider social values, and that champions of the Palmer method loved it because it promoted conformity.SEGMENT 3:
Psychoanalyst Adam Phillips tells Steve Paulson that children acquire language only at the cost of limiting their emotional lives and bringing conformity to their self-expression. Phillips book is "The Beast in the Nursery."Cassette copies are available at 1-800-747-7444. Ask for program number 98-04-05-A.
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