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Title: Reviewing reading pedagogy through the lens of a stratified model of language
Contributor(s): Feez, Susan (author)orcid 
Publication Date: 2008
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Abstract: In the English-speaking world, public debates about reading pedagogy tend to be cast in terms of opposing, even irreconcilable, perspectives, described by Schleppegrell (2004, pp. 148-149) as "'meaning' versus 'form'", and exemplified in the distinction made between the whole language and phonics approaches to reading instruction (See, for example, Gibbs 1998). In these debates, literacy development in general, and learning to read in particular, are represented as if semantics and phonology are competing alternatives, while learning about grammar is supplementary or optional. This representation becomes unsustainable when viewed from the vantage point of the systemic functional stratified language model because the model makes clear how the possibilities for pedagogy are skewed and diminished if one perspective is favoured at the expense of another. While there is evidence that policy-makers are recognising the need for a more balanced approach (National Inquiry into the Teaching of Literacy 2005), in practice, the study of grammar, or grammatics (Halliday 2002 [1996], p. 384), remains under-exploited in literacy pedagogy, despite a series of proposals over the years derived from systemic functional linguistics, including more recently Martin and Rose (2005), Rose, Gray and Cowey (1999) and Williams (1999, 2004). This paper offers another perspective on the use of the stratified model of language, and the redundancy built into this model, as a resource for evaluating and designing reading pedagogies. Specifically, the paper will consider how grammatics can be used as a means for leading young children towards reading fluency, as exemplified in reading pedagogy designed by Maria Montessori a century ago.
Publication Type: Conference Publication
Conference Name: ISFC 35: 35th International Systemic Functional Congress, Macquarie University, Australia, 21st - 25th July, 2008
Source of Publication: Voices around the world: Proceedings of the 35th International Systemic Functional Congress, p. 31-37
Publisher: 35th ISFC Organizing Committee
Place of Publication: Sydney, Australia
Field of Research (FOR): 130313 Teacher Education and Professional Development of Educators
Peer Reviewed: Yes
HERDC Category Description: E1 Refereed Scholarly Conference Publication
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