In Defense of Decoding

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Title: In Defense of Decoding
Authors: Stenson, Nancy
Hickey, Tina
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Date: 2014
Abstract: Literacy instruction in primary schools in Ireland has fallen on hard times of late. Although the 1999 Revised Curriculum for Irish (Government of Ireland, 1999) specifically states that the recommended communicative approach encompasses all four skills (listening, speaking, reading and writing), it is often interpreted as emphasizing oral at the expense of written language. Perhaps as a result, research of the last decade shows that pupils’ Irish reading ability is suffering. While research on reading in Irish has been fairly limited, it shows rather disappointing results. A study conducted by the Department of Education and Science in 2008 found that "in approximately one third of classes, pupils had significant gaps in their skills of word recognition and reading comprehension" (DES 2008:60). More recently, Gileece et al. (2012) found attitudes toward reading in Irish declining among older children, even in Irish immersion and Gaeltacht schools, where skills are presumably higher than in the schools under consideration here. Finally, the latest evaluation of Irish schools (DES 2013) found Irish lessons to be unsatisfactory in 20% of classrooms inspected and 24% of student outcomes were unsatisfactory, well above the percentages for English and mathematics. Thus, there are grounds for concern, confirmed by reports from Irish teachers and scholars to be discussed below.
Type of material: Journal Article
Publisher: North American Association for Celtic Language Teachers
Keywords: IrishTeaching methodsReading skills
Language: en
Status of Item: Peer reviewed
Appears in Collections:Psychology Research Collection

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