We need phonics, along with other supports, for reading

“Balanced literacy.” It means different things to different people. On the importance of explicit, systematic phonics instruction, I agree with Emily Hanford’s arguments in her recent article. I also believe that part of the reason we are still having this debate of phonics versus whole language versus balanced literacy is a matter of definitions. Phonics instruction that is all worksheets all the time and those little decodable books is boring. All picture books all the time is great fun, but students are being shortchanged without the phonics piece.  READ MORE

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