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Perceptual Learning - spelling

Discussion in 'Primary' started by eddiecarron, Feb 3, 2012.

  1. Just over two hundred free Perceptual Learning have been sent out and in order to spread the word, I am happy to continue until the end of this month. Some recipients have asked me to explain how children can learn to spell perceptually? The answer is very simple. It has somehow become desirable that children should write creatively before they have acquired basic literacy skills - so they write and necessarily spell, creatively. They become very experienced at spelling creatively. The series of dictation courses in the Perceptual Learning pack provide children with the opposite experience ie. lots and lots of practice of spelling words correctly and consequently, they develop an intuitive perception of when words ‘look right.’ It is this ability which all good spellers have - not a series of learned 'spelling rules and exceptions. It also explains the surge in the increasing proportion of children achieving Level 5 English when they use the perceptual learning strategy.
    Consider this email received yesterday from the head of an Enfield primary school who took part in our 2010/11 pilot project and who is now using the strategy across her school for the second year.. Hi Eddie We now have the results of the latest reading comprehension test for Year 6: 29 children have achieved a Level 4 out of 30(1 child has severe dyslexia)14 children have achieved a Level 5 and4 more children are Level 4As - hopefully Level 5 by May! Looking good! Kind regards
  2. Oh how I agree with you Eddie! I have been arguing for years that so called 'emergent' writing -which means in practice thatyoung children spell words as they sound over and over again is a recipe for disaster. Surely it isn't rocket science to see that if a child has written the word 'said' as 'sed' 20/30/50 times it will have become firmly fixed in their memory and will be very difficult to change.
    Where can I obtain one of the packs?
  3. Someone emailed me a copy of an article in the New Scientist on Perceptual Learning - this is real science - not the kind of pseudo-intellectual nonsense foisted on teachers in support of pet theories such as was produced in Clackmannanshire in support of Synthetic Phonics. It is particularly injurious that some pressure groups advise that children should not be given access to books until they have been trained in the grapheme-phoneme correspondences! Fortunately the good sense of most teachers sees the folly of such pseudo science and ignores this advice.
    The perceptual learning resource pack is available free by emailing me at eddiecarron at btconnect.com giving a mailing address. You have to replace the word 'at' with he approporiate symbol.
  4. Msz

    Msz Established commenter

    You keep saying this Eddie can you direct me to these pressure groups who are saying this?
  5. I dont't keep saying it - I think i have said now twice. The RRF are a pressure group for synthetic phonics and their policy unless they have changed it recently, is that children should not have access to books until they have completed a synthetic phonics course. They also claimed it as policy that heads should not be allowed to use any strategy other than synthetic phonics. When I ridiculed this policy as facist, the then presidente/chairperson or whatever posted a message on the forum that they should not publicise this fact as it might be held against them - then promptly banned me from the coven.
    Is that a speciific enough answer to your question?

  6. Msz

    Msz Established commenter

    Very specific thank you ... I'm not a member of the RRF but I know other posters are and they certainly don't promote such ideas
  7. Not really a specific enough answer (not that it was my question, but I'm very interested too).
    I've just spent half an hour looking at the RRF webpages, and still haven't managed to find anything saying that children should not have access to books until they have completed a synthetic phonics course. Where exactly does it say that?
  8. I haven't looked at the RRF website for years - they posted messages to that effect at that time. if you can't find it youlll have to either accept my word or assume I'm lying. Maize who posts on this forum is a moderator for the RRF. Perhaps she will formally deny it and accuse me of lying! That would indeed be interesting.

  9. I forgot to add to the list of paractical research projects the fact that 22 schools have just started a Year 2 reading intervention which is targeting those children which their teachers categorise as 'non or near-non readers' This intervertion is pure 'perceptual learning' and contains absolutely no 'phonics training exercises. I am collecting information on what commercial resources have been used unsuccessfully with these children which should be very revealing. I am assuming, and their teachers have agreed, that these children are likely to go on to form the 20% who will otherside fail at the objectively structured Key Stage 2 tests.
    I also bring to the attention of those with an interest in literacy that the claim that 85% of children reach a satisfactory standard in literacy skills at Key Stage 1 is based not on objective, verifaible tests but on subjective teacher assessment and this this statistic falls to 80% when the objective tests are carried out at KS 2. I wonder why?
    It is also wothwhile restating the indisputable fact the childrens' difficulties in acquiring good literacy skills are entirely man-made. In countries with regular orthographies such as Finland, all children master the basic educational skills quickly and easily. We could do the same if we were to regularise the phonetic basis of our orthography and the whole arguement would disappear at a stroke - so too would the need for literacy experts, consultants, advisers etc. There is of course not the slightest possibility that we will take that entirely logical step or that we will even take small steps in that direction. None whatsoever.
  10. Msz

    Msz Established commenter

    You are aware that KS1 children do complete National Curriculum tests in Y2 and these are subject to rigourous extrenal moderation as is the teacher assessment Eddie
  11. Yes I am. I know also that that the schools which refuse to do KS 2 test (25%) do their own 'teacher assessments and that these present wild claims in terms of the number of children achieving Level 5 English. The secondary school teachers who receive these children with teacher assessments will readily testify to this.
    As I mentioned already, someone contact me about an article in the New Scientist on Perceptual Learning and someone else generously sent me a photocopy of the relevant article which is called 21st Century Schools "As students learned the patterns they gained a deeper understanding without having to make a conscious effort to memorise anything"
    This is real science - not the pseudo-intellectual junk of the kind which is usually thought to be good enough for teachers.

  12. Msz

    Msz Established commenter

    State maintained schools can't refuse to do KS2 (or KS1) tests they are a legal requirement
  13. Individual teachers can refuse to administer the national curriculum tests and in 25% of schools they do so. Their unions support them in this . The NUT described the tests as 'child abuse' and claimed that teacher assessments are just as accurate if not better because they know the children as individuals and not just testees.
    These schools do their own 'teacher assessment' and pass these to the secondary schools. In these areas, secondary teachers claim that some of these asessement outcomes are incredible.

  14. Msz

    Msz Established commenter

    It is not up to the teacher to administer the tests that is the head's legal responsibility
    Headteachers of maintained schools, including special schools, have a duty to ensure that
    the National Curriculum and associated assessment arrangements are implemented in
    their school.

    The Academy or Free School’s funding agreement requires that the Academy Trust (the
    body that runs the Academy) complies with any guidance issued by the Secretary of State
    to ensure that children take part in assessments and teacher assessments as they apply
    to maintained schools. It is the headteacher’s responsibility to ensure these assessment
    arrangements are implemented.

    Headteachers must:
    • ensure teachers and other staff comply with the assessment and reporting arrangements;

    • carry out all externally marked tests according to the published timetable unless
    STA has approved a timetable variation;

    cooperate with any monitoring visits, including visits to the school by local
    authority representatives.

  15. That's the theory alright - no doubt about taht but its not the reality I'm afraid. Look up the KS2 results for any authority and you will see that they are left blank for those schools which decline to take part.
    Surel7y somebody else on this thread can come up with some enlightenment!
  16. Msz

    Msz Established commenter

    No Eddie that is the LAW!
    schools can not fail to administer the tests it is a legal responsibility and a head can be removed if he/she fails to do so.
    The blanks are for 2010 when some heads took industrial action it wasn't a whim of individual teachers not to administer tests it was the result of legal action.
  17. Well, I could be wrong - I'm not always right about everything. I remember once I was wrong about aomething before - can't remember what it was but I think it was in 1964.
    Perhaps someone else could through some light on the subject. The fact thst;s its the LAW does not impress me. Its against the law to rob banks but that doesnt change the fact that banks get robbed quite frequently.

  18. Msz

    Msz Established commenter

    State schools must administer the tests and even parents do not have the legal right to withdraw their child.
    Perhaps you should have a greater respect for the law
  19. Well, it could be to do with pressure from LEAs/Ofsted on heads pushed down onto yr 2 teachers to decide that borderline children go up rather than down (surely not - that would never happen? hmm).
    Then again it might also have something to do with the 'satisfactory standard' being arbitrarily set by fallible human beings (fallible in inventing the test I mean, rather than in not assessing it properly). It's not as if we're measuring something scientific, like a freezing point - reading is a man-invented activity, so there isn't really a true 'normal' anyway. And what is measured in year 2 isn't remotely the same thing as what is measured at year 6, so why should the same percentage should be expected to be 'satisfactory'? (Whatever satisfactory means nowadays...)
    Anyway. I've recently been given an interesting document about reading fluency which seems to describe programmes similar to Eddie's ("computer-assisted reading" page 11) - but it also says that phonics teaching is necessary. It also described various other ways of increasing pupils' opportunities to read - some interesting conclusions.

  20. Msz

    Msz Established commenter

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