Welcome and Introductions

This is the hub of the site and the place to post queries, start discussions and join in the conversation!
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Anne Glennie
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Location: Isle of Lewis
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Welcome and Introductions

Postby Anne Glennie » Sun May 24, 2015 12:15 pm

Hello and welcome to the IFERI General Forum! As an international organisation, it is hoped that this forum will provide a virtual ‘meeting place’ for teachers, parents, and anyone else – from around the world – who has an interest in the teaching and learning of reading (and spelling).

The forum is a place where people can ask questions, join in discussions and share opinions and answers about all aspects of learning to read, write and spell in English. Our vision is to create an open, friendly and informed international community where we can interact and learn from each other.

Please introduce yourself below; we look forward to ‘meeting’ you. :)
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Debbie_Hepplewhite
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Joined: Sat May 23, 2015 4:42 pm

Re: Welcome and Introductions

Postby Debbie_Hepplewhite » Sun May 24, 2015 6:30 pm

I second Anne's welcome to the IFERI forum and would encourage people to join us whatever the interest in reading instruction - and also spelling, handwriting and literacy more generally.

IFERI has an unusual mix of people on its committee (check out the 'Committee' page - click on the members' photos) in a deliberate attempt to demonstrate the international collaboration and relationships possible between people of very different roles in the field of literacy in the English language.

It's pointless conducting research after research project if the findings are not put to really good use in schools and for home-education.

That is why the IFERI committee felt an organisation was needed to bring together researchers, policy advisors, programme-writers, teacher-trainers, teachers, parents, grandparents, publishers - any and all stakeholders striving to improve literacy in their own countries and throughout the world.

We have a huge task before us which is multi-faceted. This ranges from linking to existing research-findings, including historic and contemporary papers of significance, to 'evidence' any guidance, advice and resources we might recommend or link to - but also we have plenty of educational experience to provide answers and suggestions for practical solutions for teaching a single learner, or teaching in a class or a school - as required and requested.

The more we can encourage others to join us, the greater the wealth of shared information about developing and successful projects and solutions taking place to address weak literacy in a wide variety of contexts around the world.

Some of our work, however, will be necessarily questioning and challenging various research findings, programmes, practices, and even official policies, around the world - but don't be put off by those threads on the message forum which address the serious issues that, to this day, need to be addressed for the sake of greater clarity of information and for improving the educational and life- chances of the learners themselves.

So, please don't hesitate - join in!

:D
little_voices
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Jun 15, 2015 1:20 pm

Re: Welcome and Introductions

Postby little_voices » Mon Jun 15, 2015 1:34 pm

I was very excited to come across this forum and the IFERI website. I am a Speech Pathologist who has been working in the area of literacy for 20 years. I now have a special interest in working with children with dyslexia and am very passionate about helping teachers to understand the evidence based methods for teaching reading.

My frustrations with how reading is taught in Australia increased significantly this year as I witnessed the use of the 'balanced literacy approach' when my daughter started school. One of the first things her teacher said to me after she did the initial class assessments was "She knows her letter sounds well and can sound out a lot of words, but she really needs to be using other strategies such as looking at the picture. She won't move through the levels until she starts to do this."

Over the years I have worked with a multitude of children who have slipped through the gaps, when teachers and parents feel the child is a doing all right with reading, and when they get to grade 2 or 3 they start to get concerned that their spelling is so poor. I assess them only to find they have no phonological awareness skills at all. They can't decode and have managed to move through the levels in reading with a good knowledge of sight words, guessing and using context. It is atrocious that reading is still taught in many schools by encouraging children to guess from the picture, read on and try to work out what word may fit.

I will have a great time exploring your website and forum and plan to use this information to try and convey to teachers at the schools I work at that they can help change the way we teach children to read, using evidence based approaches, and that they can help children to succeed from the beginning.
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Debbie_Hepplewhite
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Joined: Sat May 23, 2015 4:42 pm

Re: Welcome and Introductions

Postby Debbie_Hepplewhite » Tue Jun 16, 2015 12:33 am

A very warm welcome to you, little voices, we look forward to working with you via our forum and organisation to try and improve the situation regarding the persistence of multi-cueing practices. Thank you for joining us and supporting our work.

By describing your experiences, you help to reveal what is going on around the world where English is taught - and that is truly helping our cause.

Your posting will encourage others to describe their similar experiences.

Every 'voice' counts - even 'little' ones! ;) :lol:
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Debbie_Hepplewhite
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Re: Welcome and Introductions

Postby Debbie_Hepplewhite » Mon Jul 20, 2015 12:39 pm

The IFERI committee is delighted to welcome new members to the committee providing us with further international representation.

It therefore seems timely to highlight our full committee.

This message, then, is both a 'welcome' to our latest committee members, James Chapman, Tom Nicholson and William (Bill) Tunmer - and a welcome from the full IFERI committee to all the visitors to our site.

See the full IFERI committee here - click on the committee members' photos to read about their experience and work:

http://www.iferi.org/team-members/
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Debbie_Hepplewhite
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Joined: Sat May 23, 2015 4:42 pm

Re: Welcome and Introductions

Postby Debbie_Hepplewhite » Wed Oct 12, 2016 3:42 pm

A very warm welcome to members of IFERI's Advisory Group. We are very grateful to have such an amazing group of people with enormous knowledge and experience between them of all aspects of literacy education and research on reading and teaching effectiveness.

See who has been kind enough to join IFERI to further support our aims - please do follow the links to their work:

http://www.iferi.org/advisory-group/
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Debbie_Hepplewhite
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Joined: Sat May 23, 2015 4:42 pm

Re: Welcome and Introductions

Postby Debbie_Hepplewhite » Mon Oct 22, 2018 9:22 pm

I've pinned a small handful of threads on the General Forum because their content gets right to the heart of why we can't achieve evidence-informed reading instruction in every class where the English language is taught.

I hope visitors to IFERI will understand just how serious this is and feel free to contribute to the forum or to write to IFERI privately to have your say and inform us if you have any worries about teacher-training, or the practices in a school or schools you know - or flawed teaching of your own child or children.

We have such a body of evidence now to show that there is a long way to go before we have equality of education and justice for all teachers with regard to their training and children with regard to their schooling.

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