A long held battle between the pro-phonics and anti-phonics brigades continues to rage
in spite of the overwhelming evidence in favour synthetic based phonics approaches to
The major argument from those in favour of the more traditional searchlights model
focusses on the mistaken belief that phonics teaching is an overly regimented system
denying our children the gift of imagination. Having experienced phonics in action, and
with much surprise at having my 6 year old nephew reading out James and the Giant Peach
to me, It is nearly impossible to reconcile any formality at all with modern approaches
to synthetic phonics teaching. How can a system that is as multisensory and inclusive as
synthetic phonics be accused of such a crime.
Back to my nephew again, in just 30 minutes a day spent on teaching phonics, he has now
grasped the fundamentals of reading leaving the rest of the day to be filled with play,
singing, painting and many other developmental activities, long may it continue.