Irena Barker

How useful is pointing when teaching pupils to read?


What’s the point of pointing? Irena Barker finds there is a surprising lack of research on the efficacy of scanning your digit along the page while teaching children to read

How useful is pointing at text when teaching pupils to read?

Despite what your parents tell you, pointing is not always rude. In fact, for babies, it plays an important role in the development of language. Studies have shown that babies’ use of the pointing gesture at 12 months is a good predictor of their vocabulary size later on in life (

And what about non-verbal communication? Without the use of an extended index finger, communication in many scenarios would be much harder – the phrase ‘over there’ would largely be rendered, erm, pointless.

Then there is that ubiquitous part of every early years foundation stage ...

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