Explicitness - Word Level

Definition : "The teacher uses explicit word and sound strategies."

Whilst there are still divisions persisting amongst some sections of the education community, there is a growing recognition within the education community that the explicit teaching of sound-letter relationships and how to use these in reading and writing are important parts of early literacy teaching.

Research shows that phonemic awareness (awareness of the sound units of language) and letter knowledge measured at school entry were the two best predictors of reading success in the first two years of school and that systematic phonics instruction, in which the acquisition of sound-letter correspondences and their use in reading and spelling were explicitly taught, was highly effective in promoting early reading.

In the study, there were occasions where teachers directed children's attention to explicit word and sound strategies in all teachers' classrooms. As expected, explicitness word was observed in all episodes of the two most effective teachers' classrooms and one of the effective teachers' classrooms. However, it was also observed in 50% or more of the episodes for all but one of the other teachers' classrooms. Thus, frequency of use of this teaching practice did not discriminate between the more effective, the effective and the less effective teachers (see Chapter 5 of the full report for explanation in terms of Rasch analysis).

All teachers directed the children's attention to whole words, the sounds and letters within them, the relationships between sounds and letters and how to read and write them through segmenting and blending.