As part of one my research projects we are now focussing on reading in the Foundation Phase (Grades 1-3) and developing a course to train Foundation Phase teachers how to teach reading, because, as it turns out, most Foundation Phase teachers don’t actually know how to teach reading (in an African language or in English). We’re getting the best literacy experts in the country on it and developing a world class video-based, year-long, part-time course showing practically what the various building blocks of reading are, why they’re important, how to teach them, and when. It’s still in the concept note phase – and you’ll hear more about it in the next 3 months – but for now here are some great articles and books about reading:
- New Yorker article “Can reading make you happier?” – I like the idea of Bibliotherapy 🙂
- “Preventing reading difficulties in young children” (1998) – PDF scan of the book by Catherine Snow and others.
- “Effective academic interventions in the united States; Evaluating and enhancing the acquisition of early reading skills” – succinct and accessible article summarizing quite a bit of reading research in the US (Good, Simmons & Smith, 1998).
- The National Reading Panel: An Evidence-Based Assessment of the Scientific Research Literature on Reading and Its Implications for REading Instruction – authoritative and exhaustive.
- Supporting transition or playing catch-up in Grade 4? Implications for standards in education and training – excellent 2014 article by Lilli Pretorius. We need more research like this! (As an aside Lilli is heading up our team of experts looking at developing the reading course for Foundation Phase teachers).
- “Teaching Reading in the Early Grades” – 2008 handbook published by the Department of Basic Education.
- M&G article “Blind schooling in shocking state” The thing that shocked me the most was that even when there is money available for resources and training it seems to be squandered in corruption. The company that won the tender to do Braille teaching in the Eastern Cape (Peakford) sent trainers who couldn’t read or write in Braille. The company had no experience in Braille-teaching yet was still selected. Despicable.
- In case you forgot what it was liked to be bullied at school, this Youtube video (allegedly at Krugerlaan School in Vereneging) shows one student beating up another while the teachers sits by marking.
Very interested in your research project 🙂 You might want to check out the work of world renown educational linguistics Rothery, Martin, Rose and Halliday who have already developed a similar course for teachers. They have been researching a cost effective way to teach teachers how to explicitly teach reading and writing skills since 1994. Their work, however, is for all phases of education and is intended to ensure the teaching of reading and writing is done across the curriculum and not with just language teachers, which is very important. Their training programme which is in modular form, is being used in Europe, Scotland, Uganda, South Africa (very remotely as funding has been an issue) and other countries. In fact I know Lilli Pretorious is very interested in the work of David Rose who is a founding academic of the RtL pedagogy. RtLSA has been working with this methodology since the early 2000’s and Oxford Uni press are already wanting to develop classroom dvd’s that teachers can use to help with reading and writing skills.
Gems as always. Loved the booktherapy article especially since it included my all time favorite which never ceases to amuse and orient “Archie and Mehetabel”
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Thanks for your ever-interesting posts, Nic! In case you are unaware of this study, check out http://literacy.org/sites/literacy.org/files/publications/wagner_mobiles4reading_usaid_june_14.pdf
It is a recent landscape review of the use of mobile devices in teaching reading in the early grades in LMICs – so relevant to the South African context.