A comparative study of two methods of synthetic phonics instruction for learning how to read: Jolly Phonics and THRASS

Callinan, Carol and van der Zee, Emile (2010) A comparative study of two methods of synthetic phonics instruction for learning how to read: Jolly Phonics and THRASS. The Psychology of Education Review, 34 (1). pp. 21-31. ISSN 0262-4087

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Abstract

The National Strategy for Primary Schools in England (2006) advocates synthetic phonics as a means for
teaching children to read. No studies exist to date comparing the effectiveness of different commercially available synthetic phonics methods. This case study compared two schools at which Jolly Phonics (JP) was taught with one school at which THRASS (Teaching Handwriting, Reading and Spelling Skills) was taught at Reception
level (4 to 5 years) over a one-year period. Reading ability for words and non-words as well as short-term memory
ability for words and phonemes improved in all schools. However, reading ability improved more in one JP school
compared to the THRASS school, with no differences between the other JP school and the THRASS school. This
paper considers how particular variables may mask instruction method effects, and advocates taking such
factors into account for a more comprehensive future evaluation of synthetic phonics methods.

Item Type:Article
Additional Information:The National Strategy for Primary Schools in England (2006) advocates synthetic phonics as a means for teaching children to read. No studies exist to date comparing the effectiveness of different commercially available synthetic phonics methods. This case study compared two schools at which Jolly Phonics (JP) was taught with one school at which THRASS (Teaching Handwriting, Reading and Spelling Skills) was taught at Reception level (4 to 5 years) over a one-year period. Reading ability for words and non-words as well as short-term memory ability for words and phonemes improved in all schools. However, reading ability improved more in one JP school compared to the THRASS school, with no differences between the other JP school and the THRASS school. This paper considers how particular variables may mask instruction method effects, and advocates taking such factors into account for a more comprehensive future evaluation of synthetic phonics methods.
Keywords:phonics, reading acquisition, short-term memory, schoolchildren, instruction
Subjects:C Biological Sciences > C800 Psychology
C Biological Sciences > C830 Experimental Psychology
C Biological Sciences > C812 Educational Psychology
Divisions:College of Social Science > School of Psychology
ID Code:2559
Deposited By: Emile van der Zee
Deposited On:24 May 2010 12:20
Last Modified:13 Mar 2013 08:38

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