101.  How can Phonics apply at the high school level?  Especially in the Emotionally Disabled classroom?


In many other answers I have provided, I indicated that PHONICS is to be used exclusively during the very early stages of learning to read in English, during a maximum period of TWO years, and ONLY for totally fluent native English speakers.   I indicated that PHONICS may help many initial English readers but PHONICS is NOT an essential tool for teaching to read in English.   Millions of English-speaking children learned to read in English without the PHONICS method of teaching reading.   Totally deaf or born-deaf children learn to read in English without ever hearing the sounds of English.   These totally deaf children or children-born-deaf can also be taught to SPEAK English, to verbalize sounds although they cannot hear them.  

At the high school level most students have mastered reading in English.   If newly arrived non-English speakers enter high school due to their age at arrival, these English Language Learners should NEVER be taught to read English through PHONICS.   These students, like deaf students, have never heard the SOUNDS of ENGLISH.   They have heard the SOUNDS of their PRIMARY language –Spanish, Chinese, Urdu, etc.  But it is extremely hard for them to HEAR the sounds of English.   If these high school English Language Learners know how to read and write in their primary language, these abilities will help them learn to read and write in English although their pronunciation of English sounds may be very inaccurate and they may have incredible difficulty HEARING English sounds.   

Now, I am NOT an expert on emotional disabilities, nor am I certified to teach in a high school classroom for students with emotional disabilities.   But I do know that, as explained above, the high school level is NOT the place to use PHONICS to teach English reading to English speakers or English Language Learners.   Thus, I would have to answer your question strongly suggesting that PHONICS can NOT and should NOT be used beyond the Kindergarten-First grade or First/Second grades span of time in a child’s educational career.



For more in-depth information, classroom demonstrations, and "coaching" of new and/or experienced teachers, Dr. CARMEN SANCHEZ SADEK offers:

1. Cognitive - Academic Language and Vocabulary Development
2. Cross Cultural Diversity - Multicultural Strategies
3. Effective Instruction for English Learners (L.E.P. students) Parts 1, 2, 3, 4
4. Promoting Academic Success in Language Minority Students
5. Cognitive - Academic Language and Vocabulary Development
6. Oral Language / Literacy Skills / Higher Order Thinking Skills
7. 50/50 Dual Language Programs: design, planning and implementation
8. The Structure of English / The Structure of Spanish
9. Transition: Introduction to English Reading

Web Site Programs for Teachers: Numbers 1, 5, 7, 8, and 9.
Web Site Programs for
Paraprofessionals: Number 3.
Web Site Programs for
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Enhanced Cultural Sensitivity - The Challenge of Students Diversity
Identifying / Responding to Students' Language Needs
Phonemic Awareness: Teaching English phonics to L.E.P. students
Relationship Between Reading, Writing and Spelling
Improving Reading Performance -- Building Oral Language Skills)

Write and e-mail any additional questions you may have, and Dr. CARMEN SANCHEZ SADEK will establish with you, your school or district a Technical Assistance Service Contract. Dr. CARMEN SANCHEZ SADEK will answer all your questions promptly and to your satisfaction.


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