Saturday, 10 September 2016

When was the 'only' bit dropped from 'first, fast and only' phonics?

I gather that the latest way in which the Ruth Miskin phonics package in the very first weeks of Year 1 is now delivered (according to the training and what you buy) goes like this:
1. Phonics instruction for half hour a day using Miskin materials.
2. Using Miskin texts as written by the Miskin team. These are phonically regular.
3. Using a 'real book' - not by Miskin, but specifically chosen by Miskin in the Miskin package that the school buys into. This is not phonically regular.
4. Note: the sequence can go 1, 3, 2, ie using the non-phonically regular text before the regular one.

Isn't this a departure from 'first, fast and only'? I heard several people from the phonics camp explain quite clearly that the beginning of Year 1 was too early for children to be looking at and being taught using non-phonically regular texts - including Nick Gibb who told me personally that it was 'confusing' for children at this point. When did the prescription of non-phonically regular texts come in to the Miskin package? Has it been included in e.g. Jolly Phonics or any other of the prescribed and govt. ratified schemes?

Isn't this an example of the 'mixed method' systems, so derided and scorned by some in the phonics camp?