Don't buy this phonics snake oil

3rd March 2006 at 00:00
Wendy Scott cocoons herself from the overwhelming evidence in arguing for a later start to phonics. Most schools start at age four and private schools at three.

For the front cover of The Phonics Handbook, that I publish, we chose children aged four. Overseas, particularly in the Far East, the use of phonics to teach English (as a second language) is commonplace at three and four. In this competitive world it is likely Ms Scott's advice, inadvertently, will simply help those not affected by it.

Chris Jolly

Managing director, Jolly Learning Ltd, High Road

Chigwell, Essex

Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?


To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers


Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar,, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today