Understanding reading development

V. Smith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


It is more than eighteen months now since Sir Jim Rose published his Independent Review of the Teaching of Early Reading (Rose, 2006). The publicity it occasioned has mostly died down, but waves of gloom continue to reverberate: those of us with broad and liberal understandings of what reading is and what reading is for regret Rose's insistence on discrete synthetic phonics as 'the prime approach to establishing word recognition' (2006, p. 20), and are unconvinced that the 'broad and language-rich curriculum' (p. 29) into which this teaching will be positioned will be anything like broad or rich enough to mitigate the reductionalist and technicist assumptions that so often accompany phonics teaching in the early years. Where, in all this discrete decoding work, we ask, do children learn what reading is good for?
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)115-117
Number of pages2
JournalBritish Journal of Educational Studies
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2008


  • reading development
  • early reading
  • synthetic phonics


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