Your child 5-11 years

How does my child learn to read?


The controversies around reading methods are resurfacing regularly. What are the practices practiced today by teachers? Is there a really better than others? And how can you help your child learn to read? The answers of our specialists.

There are three major methods of learning reading.

  • 1. The synthetic method, also called syllabic: the child first learns to decipher the letters that each correspond to a sound, then in successive combinations comes to the syllables, then to the words and sentences. It has long reigned supreme before being challenged by the educational "revolution" of the 70s.
  • 2. The analytical method, also called global: the child learns to read by visually memorizing the words as a whole. After hours of glory in the 70s-80s, it is not used at all.
  • 3. The mixed method: it mixes both approaches. This is the most practiced by teachers today, but each dose differently the share of deciphering and visual memorization.

What are the criteria for a good method?

  • The answer of Alain Bentolila, professor of linguistics *: "We can not claim that all the methods are equal, some are better than others, more effective, like the ones that offer a rigorous learning of the code (the correspondence between the letters and the sounds) from the first CP days and which, in parallel, allow the child to read very quickly meaningful sentences by giving him words to memorize visually.But we must not go beyond sixty little words very common and easy to remember - the prepositions (on, in), the determinants (the, the), the verbs being (is) and having (a) - so as not to saturate the visual memory. which, by the way, seems to be about everyone's agreement today.
  • The answer of Colette Ouzilou, speech therapist **: "The synthetic method is the best because the most respectful of the child and his needs." Observe a child who plays What he loves is to start from different small elements - cubes, pieces of Lego - to associate them and to construct an object In the same way, with the letters of the alphabet, he can build words, and the synthetic method is in adequacy with the quite limited abstraction abilities of a child of 5 or 6. The synthetic method also has the merit of not penalizing a child with little vocabulary: he can perfectly decipher a word he does not know and spontaneously ask the meaning.This helps to neutralize cultural differences and do not book the reading only to the elite! "

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