Methods for the first degree

Several different methods for teaching reading. So many that, to order, has made several attempts at classification. There has been talk of analytical methods, synthetic and blended; methods led upwards or downwards gear, global methods, syllabic and alphabetic; methods that emphasize understanding and supporting the decoding; eclectic methods, etc. Among all classifications, the better for being simple and coherent is one that uses as a criterion to organize the methods that start point. Under this approach, there are two groups: methods that start with learning units and non-significant initiating learning methods using meaningful units. In the first are alphabetic and syllabic, the second, which are based on words, phrases or sentences [1]. In this picture fit all that exist, to be counted by tens.

Methods that leave no significant units

Alpha Methods

The first methods used to teach reading in the Western world [2] began by presenting the letters of the alphabet, which are not meaningful units. The first thing the student learns laboriously are the names of the letters, then, on this basis, can decode words and read phrases and sentences. So taught the Greeks and Romans of the ancient world and the teachers taught in parochial schools of modern times and thus continues to teach even today. In these gloomy times comes that precept, “The letter enters with blood,” he reported painful for the child system apprentice. In recent times several resources were used to make less harsh invented initiation of reading but ultimately useless: embossed lettering, illustrated booklets, song, dominoes and other. A modern variant, although deep-alphabetic also consists phonic procedures, which do not use the letter names but what are believed to be the sounds corresponding to the graphs.

These practices were maintained by habit but failed to have a theoretical basis. No researchers to support them from their disciplines, by contrast, are forms severely criticized by experts in reading methodology.

Syllabic methods

After many centuries appeared proposals other than alphabetical. In the nineteenth century, especially in Latin America, there are syllabic methods. It teaches children some syllabic repertoire, when mastered, go to read words made up of syllables they know and then follow with phrases and sentences. Grandmaster Argentine Domingo Faustino Sarmiento issued a syllabic method based on “ditties” which were mnemonic resources for children could learn better certain syllabic repertoires. One, for example, was this: “mo li attests nu / / nu faith mo li da / / da nu mo li fe / / mo nu attests li …”. Between us was used until mid-century a method based on the following sequence: “a sa ma pa ta ra”, which resulted in words like “mass”, “mama” and allowed to reach sentences like “Mom kneaded mass “. Then, the sequence varied as “and I will be re pe te”, “i pi li ri me if you”, etc., In the order of the vowels. No need of more examples to show how the procedures were syllabic units departing insignificant existence although more concrete for children, since the syllables are easily perceived by the ear. This facility enables some success in learning, although constructed texts syllabic repertoires child gets to know are bland and not favorable for understanding. Examples of these texts are “my mom spoils me”, “that bear peeks” or “my dad and my uncle drinks tea drinks mate” with whom it is difficult to get a true reading, full of content.

Methods that are based on meaningful units

After the invention of printing, when Europe lay in the dissemination of printed material, there was a greater concern for learning to read since childhood [3]. Already in the seventeenth century, the great Czech pedagogue Jan Amos Comenius, who we know with the surname Latinized, Comenius-published children’s book sensualis Orbis pictus (1658), The visible world in images, intended primarily to learning Latin by reading words. Showing images with accompanying words, this book is the precursor of the procedures based on meaningful units: in this case, based on words. Indeed, a word carries a meaning. Your visual image, its image and its meaning phonic passed as a unit to the memory, which stores all in what is called the “visual vocabulary” of the person, which is one of the essential tools for progress in reading .

In the eighteenth century, several authors suggest ways for learning to read, other than explicitly alphabet used before. In the fourteenth century and is noticeable the more or less simultaneous appearance of innovative methods, some based on other words and sentences based on [4].

Methods based on words

Some methods begin working with words. When children know visually a certain number of words, is passed to identify letters that are common, later serving as a sign for the children to identify other words, not always presented by the book or the teacher. At the same time, begin by reading phrases and sentences. This procedure was (is) very applied in English-speaking countries, where the language makes it impossible to work with syllables [5]. For example, the number of words “ball”, “basketball”, “bee”, “boat,” boot “, which lend themselves to be accompanied by illustrations, easy to discover the presence of / b / and its representation .

A book that had great sales success was the Glenn J. Doman, anxious parents can be found even in supermarkets Lima. In this book, How to teach your baby to read (Buenos Aires, Ed Books Taurus), the author recommends children present day a number of cards with words, showing them with household items, so that the child go associating the word you see with the object whose name heard. To base your method, Doman picked Tommy experience, a child with brain damage that could learn from this procedure. This case has a precedent: the experience of psychologist Jean Marc Itard with Victor, the wolf boy found early nineteenth century in the forest of Aveyron (France), which reached to read words but never was able to communicate verbally with others [6] .

In Castilian has also been home experiences with words. Books like “baby” and “UPA”, Argentines, are close to the procedure. In our country we are the children’s books of Nicanor Rivera Felipe Cáceres and Maestro, Christian Brother.

Among the materials that follow this line, there is a huge variety and diversity of qualities. From a technical standpoint, this is a good alternative to English-speaking countries but not necessarily the best for places where people speak Castilian, as the pace of the word in the script ignores an important resource management syllables [7], entirely feasible in the language we speak.

Methods based on sentences

As the methods are based on words, methods that start with sentences have long since. They are backed by research seriously. Ovide Decroly – that is not the only but the best known among us-provided early last century solid foundations for global methods [8], among which are sentence-based methods.

Sentence based methods begin with prayers from which work with the phrases that are, in a way that strengthens the visual vocabulary, grammar handling and reading as a process of understanding. From there it comes to words and syllables to return to work with new sentences, new for this time are made up words and phrases also new. Methods based on sentence there is no way to work without resorting to the content of the prayers. In them it is imperative that children fully understand what they read. So thorough reading is worked from the start. That is their wealth.

In our country there was a moment during the 70 educational reform was attempted to work with a sentence method, remember that many teachers linked to the book “Friend”, published by the INIDE. The first text engine, “tito played with dora” favored dialogue with children and allows the construction of sentences with interesting variations (tito plays, plays dora, dora plays with tito, tito plays Dora), variations that could be enriched added posters with names of children of school group. The second text engine, “Mom walks with Rosita”, allowed a similar game and made possible combinations with the first words: “tito playing with mom”, “rosita walking with dora”, etc.. This progressed until, by the fourth unit began syllabic analysis of familiar words that had been used in text near the experience of children [9].

This method was also used by the Bilingual Education Pilot Project, developed in Puno in the 80s, under which resulted in the books for first grade “Kusi” (in Quechua) and “Katita” (in Aymara). Recently is successfully employed in the project running EIB Land of Children with Stromme Foundation support in Anchonga (Huancavelica), with the book in Quechua “Kusiwan Mayta” a title that plays with the names of the protagonists of children texts: Kusi and Mayta.

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