This article may remind many teachers of the journey they have made from a progressive, ideological approach to teaching reading (that did not equip them for the classroom) to realising that synthetic phonics is based on research and really works for the vast majority of children. It reminded me.
Looking back on my initial teacher education, there is no doubt it was of the progressive kind. The driving force behind the course was that a fresh approach to education was needed. This was not made explicit, of course, but the course materials dripped of progressive ideology. Here are some examples:
- Kevin Robinson’s viral video How Schools Kill Creativity featured on the professional practice unit reading list
- My science unit promoted learning through discovery using the 5E method, which has found popularity in the Primary Connections series
- My English unit for early reading stressed the need for teaching through genuine literary experiences, which is in opposition to research on synthetic phonics.
- Learning styles were a key feature in the text assigned to me for Creative Arts.
- Game theory was the approach promoted in maths for teaching K-2
The truth is, I bought deeply into this ideology. Almost all educators say they…
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