Reflecting on the Teaching and Learning Cycle

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Debbie_Hepplewhite
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Reflecting on the Teaching and Learning Cycle

Postby Debbie_Hepplewhite » Sat May 30, 2015 11:35 am

There is so much 'alphabetic code' to introduce to learners, that basic skills lessons are inevitably requiring, in the main, repetitive routines as each part of the alphabetic code is introduced (the letter/s-sound correspondences), then applied to the phonics skills for reading, spelling and handwriting - of course materials should also include other aspects of learning such as vocabulary enrichment and language comprehension and building up knowledge of spelling word banks.

Unfortunately, if teachers do not allow enough time for their literacy basic skills provision, there is a danger that the practice of learners from code, to word, to sentence, to text level application may be seriously limited which will really hurt the slower-to-learn children and will not stretch the quicker-to-learn children.

What really matters then, isn't so much about the time available for literacy basic skills provision, but that learners get a chance to practise sufficiently and to 'apply and extend' the alphabetic code knowledge with their phonics skills for reading, spelling and comprehension.

In other words, that learners are enabled to complete a content-rich 'Teaching and Learning Cycle', or sequence, even if it takes more than one lesson to complete the full cycle.

Teachers might find this 'reflection' diagram (below) helpful to consider their literacy basic skills provision in generic terms.

This diagram is not intended to be 'programme-specific' but it is to support teachers to take an overview of their provision - including the nature of any special needs 'intervention' that they might be providing. Too often I visit schools where the slowest-to-learn children are taken out of lessons to be given a different 'programme' which really amounts to a different 'approach'. This links to where schools do provide 'Systematic Synthetic Phonics' programmes but then the slowest-to-learn children are taken out of lessons to do, for example, 'Reading Recovery' or similar multi-cueing reading strategies programmes which give children fundamentally different messages about 'how' to approach reading.

I hope teachers might find this diagram helpful regardless of their schools preferred phonics programme:

http://www.phonicsinternational.com/Ref ... 0Cycle.pdf

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