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Della Palacios

Educational Consultant, Trainer and Teacher, SensAble Learning, LLC

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Should we begin teaching children letter sounds first with lowercase letters instead of letter names with uppercase letters?

What do you see more of when you open a book, capital letters or lowercase letters?

What is more important for reading, letter sounds or letter names?

Shouldn't we teach children the more germane information pertaining to the letter first, its sound, as Montessori schools do? Aa is for apple and it says /a/ is too much information for a child to take in, process and then apply to a complex language code. Why don't we start with lowercase letters and sounds, saving letter names for once a child can read a three-letter consonant-vowel-consonant word?

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    May 7 2013: Perhaps children should first learn the IPA
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      May 7 2013: I'm going to ask Brenda to answer this one... I defer to her.
    • May 10 2013: As my focus is on children under three, I believe keeping it simple is the best approach. One phoneme to one grapheme (except for x and q)...represents the basic tool of a language using the Latin alphabet. Empowering young children to identify what they see in their world is the direct and positive link to their printed language.

      It is important to see the most common letter-sound associations as the simplest tools of print. Early reading is not the goal, but reading readiness IS the goal. Every child deserves to have the the fundamental tools of printed language when they first say, "I want to read." KISS is a good thing!

      This is SUCH a good conversation! Thank you all! Thank you, Della, for such a good topic.

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