How NOT to Teach Reading: Memorization

I Guess Not!

Part Three of a 12-part video series showing the flaws of common word reading strategies taught in schools– Moral: Do not teach struggling readers to guess or memorize!


Word Memorization – Auto the Otter Strategy:

Fluent reading and writing requires automatic reading and spelling of all common words. Many of the most common words in English are phonetically irregular (e.g., <to, too , two>), and that has led to the practice of teaching the most common words as sight words (i.e., words that must be read “on sight” –memorized as opposed to understood or analyzed).  However, this is not a good strategy because the spelling of most all phonetically irregular words still makes a great deal of sense when you look at the word’s meaning elements.

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Jennifer Salisbury

In 2004, Jennifer joined Teach for America as a special educator where she taught kindergarten through fifth grade. Her passion for reading instruction led her to be trained in a program based on the Orton-Gillingham method. After achieving significant results with her students, she began conducting trainings to help strengthen other teachers’ reading instruction. “My motivation as a teacher is to share my love of learning, and my gift has been working with struggling readers. There is no better feeling than to help someone become a strong reader and independent learner.” Jennifer earned a B.A. in Global studies University of California Santa Barbara and M.S. in Special Education from Lehman College.