With the most recent round of the reading war, balance literacy finds itself under attack by the media and phonics-centered advocates. In this article, we advocate for a balanced approach to teaching literacy and argue that the current “science of reading” movement promoting systematic phonics instruction for all learners is dangerous and misguided. Rather than a one-size-fits-all program that will never be adequate nor appropriate for all children, balanced literacy centers the learner as instructional decisions are made based on the child's individual needs. Further, we argue that the standardization of reading instruction in the form of heavy phonics will come at the expense of engaging children in meaningful reading and writing experiences that will deepen their comprehension and develop them as lifelong readers. It is critical that policy makers and educators carefully consider the need for authentic, embedded curriculum that does not impede teachers’ autonomy to make instructional decisions to best meet the individual needs of all learners.
Kelly, Katie and Thomas, Paul
"Failing Balanced Literacy Is Failing Readers,"
Georgia Journal of Literacy: Vol. 43
, Article 7.
Available at: https://digitalcommons.kennesaw.edu/gjl/vol43/iss1/7