The Learning Process
Children who struggle with literacy lose confidence when they are repeatedly told that their spelling attempts are wrong. Yet, when looked at objectively, their choices offer evidence of sound phonemic awareness. The problem is that they are trying to apply a flawed approach whereby they are attempting to represent the 44 spoken sounds (phonemes) of English using a method that teaches that each of the 26 letters of the alphabet represents only one sound (ie. a – apple, o – dog). However, words such as day, toy, cow and light, require a combination of letters to represent some of the sounds heard.
The 44 phonemes in English and their most common spelling choices need to be explicitly taught, as do syllables and blends.
My approach to teaching is very much focused on the individual learning needs of my students. I meet them where they are currently at and then work with them to establish and achieve new goals. My teaching is also consistent with the requirements of the Victorian and national curriculum.
I work with students from pre-school to year 8. I use a multi-sensory approach to teaching, aiming to make the sessions enjoyable, as children learn best when they are having fun. I encourage and reward effort, repeating and reassuring students until key understandings are confidently mastered.
Support is also offered to parents so that they can understand how best to assist and develop a shared language for building a sustainable approach to literacy that will continue well into their secondary years and beyond.
I also work with adults who require assistance with learning English as a second language.