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Discussion in 'Primary' started by sandyjohn, Jun 4, 2011.

  1. I must confess that I would assume that 'which one is correct' would follow on from 'phonic choices', so if it isn't I can see why you are worried.
    Now, this is really interesting! I had a look at the L & S appendices and found the '300 HFWs). Then I found the database that they have been compiled from. It is this one:
    This is curiously circular. The reason that these words 'appear in books for children in the first two years in school' is because they are part of the old 'look & say' strategy for teaching reading whereby scheme books contained a very tightly controlled vocabulary which was endlesssly repeated in order to promote learning the words as 'wholes' ('sight' words). Of course they are going to be very high frequency in these books; they were deliberately frequently repeated! In the past children needed to 'learn' these words because they were in their reading books.
    SP teaching opens up a far wider written vocabulary to children and most of the L & S 'common words' words are perfectly straightforwardly decodable.
    But I find it very ironic that a 'programme' written as guidance on SP teaching is actually using this whole language/look & say tool.
    I also find it quite amusing that some academics have solemnly compiled this database when they could just have popped along to any publisher of a 'look & say' reading scheme and got the list from them!
  2. McNally and Murray had already established almost exactly the same list between 1962 -8.
    (I think someone else had already done so in the 1930's too.)
    Apart from a few odd additions like 'narrator', those words are the ones which occur most often in all English texts.
    The creators of the Oxford reading series tried to make sure they included all of them, because they did occur so often in all books, children's included.
  3. It would be interesting to compare them with the Dolch word list.

    As 'floppy' is one of the 300 words I rather think that ORT preceded the Masterton et al database.
  4. Msz

    Msz Established commenter

    PLEASE tell me you aren't serious?
    4 year old children in reception can master said and friend !
  5. As 'floppy' is one of the 300 words I rather think that ORT preceded the Masterton et al database.

    ORT was introduced in the 1980s.

  6. It would be no wonder that children found learning English spelling difficult if they were taught by the Masha Method...
  7. You really don't understand what I am saying, do you, masha. The lists contain words which occur frequently because they come ftrom texts where they are used highly repetitively in order to promote whole word learning. Whole word learning has been around since the 19th century at least, and was extremely widespread in the USA in the 1920s & 1930s; long before it became popular in the UK. Even the 1936 Dolch word list (USA) is compiled from repetitive children's texts...
    Can't you see how very incestuous it all is?
    Before 'high frequency words' childrens' early reading books were much more 'interesting'. How about this one from 1866[​IMG]
    Reading Without Tears

  8. A magazine called Sparkle World which neither I nor my son's wife liked the look of at first but my 5 1/2 yr old granddaughter absolutely adores has a workbook inside each time which has lots of stuff like that. Her spelling has come on amazingly since Sep. She is obviously doing writing at school as well, but this is definitely helping. It would be easy for any parent to make up more of for a child that is not getting spellings easily.
  9. Msz

    Msz Established commenter

  10. And u ar not getting what I am saying. I looked at several English word frequency listings when I did my analysis of English spelling for regularities and irregularities.
    The most used 300 words at the top of each list are nearly identical. 'The' always has the highest count.
  11. Everyone thinks they are an expert and everyone thinks their method is right!
  12. mystery10

    mystery10 Occasional commenter

    I thought that when the Ladybird key word reading scheme was originally designed it was based on high frequency words that were truly high frequency i.e. they were high frequency in normal English rather than in children's books that had been designed to repeat and repeat a particularly limited vocabulary.
    In the original blurb from the Ladybird key word scheme they quote some stats (which elude me now) about how if you can read the XXX key words in their scheme you can read XX% of the words in something or other. I don't think they based their list on standard children's basic readers of the time did they? I don't think the result is massively different from the first 100 or so words in Letters and Sounds is it?
    Msz, you scare me again with the progress the children make in spelling at your school. I don't think any child in reception at my children's school would ever get to learn how to spell said or friend unless they happened to remember it from their reading ........ but then I don't know if any of them yet have a school reading book with words like that in them.
  13. Msz

    Msz Established commenter

    They don't need to have a reading book to learn either word said would be introduced in the phonics lesson as a "tricky" word and the children would be taught that "ai" represents /?/ in said and again and against ...
    It's a very simple matter to point out that "ie" in friend also represents /?/young children accept this readily and if it is reinforced soon remember when they use it in their witing.
  14. Thanks Mags I will email you now.
    We use letters and sounds and give out spellings each week related to the lessons taught the prior week. His mum has spoken to me and says that nothing I have suggested is helping him to learn his spellings, she is finding it really difficult to help him to learn them. He therefore does not want to even try at home.
    Thanks for all of your suggestions - Masha I will give your ideas a go too!
    Thanks everyone!
  15. Thanks Mags I will email you now. We use letters and sounds and the spellings we send home are related to the words learned the prior week. He isn't remembering any of the words learned at home even after a few minutes, his parents are finding it hard to help him and I have ran out of ideas. We have tried the plastercine idea but to no avail. Masha I will suggest and try your idea too
    Thank you everyone for your help!
  16. whoops double post.
  17. Msz

    Msz Established commenter

    How old is the child? How is his phonics? What words are you expecting him to learn?
  18. You can't be serious. Masha knows next to nothing about how to teach spelling (or reading). She infests these boards in order to try and persuade people to join her campaign for simplifying English spelling. She is an ex-secondary English teacher, and believe you me, secondary English teachers generally know nothing about how to teach reading or spelling. Strategies taken from her grand-daughter's 'Sparkle' magazine are not exactly examples of good practice. Unless you want to confuse children even further.
    Have you ever heard of structured, systematic phonics?

  19. he is year 2, we use the letters and sounds programme, the words are phase 5 words that he learns in his phonics lessons the week before the spellings are given out.
  20. Msz

    Msz Established commenter

    If he is on Phase 5 he knows all 150+ graphemes?
    For example if you ask him to write all the ways he knows to represent the "ai" sound or the "f" sound could he do it?

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