- Paperback: 192 pages
- Publisher: Harpercollins (May 1983)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0060910313
- ISBN-13: 978-0060910310
- Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 5.5 x 8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 8 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,128,277 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Why Johnny Still Can't Read: A New Look at the Scandal of Our Schools Paperback – May, 1983
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Top Customer Reviews
The first book was mainly a primer on phonic reading, with enough about the phonics debate to justify following his program. The second book is devoted exclusively to the ongoing debate about phonics, and makes for fascinating reading--especially if you get steamed by incompetence, and are fascinated by conflict.
Some thirty years after the first book was written, Rudolph Flesch observes that things haven't improved in reading class. Kids still get through school functionally illiterate, and the perpetrators of this crime still claim that we need THEM to solve the problem.
Too bad it's out of print! Well worth reading.
Throughout his life, Flesch took on our education establishment and, in the short term, lost. Sure, his book Why Johnny Can't Read was a bestseller in 1956; and this second one on the same theme was a big bestseller in 1981. But Flesch was trying to save the country from what he viewed as a plague; and in that he did not succeed. He died depressed, thinking that the promoters of Whole Word had won. Indeed, this [...] actually reached its peak around 1995, almost a decade after Flesch died.
Read either of these books and you will be asking: How could Flesch's clear, concise and devastating analysis, presented in two bestsellers, be vanquished by the flimsy fallacy known as Whole Word??? Ah, that is a great question you ask there. Dare we mention that some publishers made mega-millions selling Dick and Jane nonsense? Or that some educators seem to have built stellar careers on the backs of functional illiterates? Can we speak of conspiracy? Let me just note one of the past century's most peculiar facts: as "progressive" educators worked tirelessly to discredit Flesch, our media and academics stood silently aside.
The saga continues. Today's educators use the phrase "Balanced Literacy," which seems to mean: as much Whole Word as they can get away with.
This book is the sequel to Flesch's earlier book, "Why Johnny Can't Read"; but this book is a continuation and it is many things to many people. I used it as an aid for educating myself as a homeschooling parent.
More than this, Flesch's book is a brief history of the English language, explaining how English was taught in the past several hundred years, show why children learned English so easily in the past. At the time of the American Revolution, Americans were a very literate society. Many people read and wrote with fluency. Flesch tells what happened. The historical aspects of the English language is very exciting.
More than this, Flesch's work is an indictment of the relationship between large publishing companies and the public school system.
Other books of interest are those written by John Holt, and John Taylor Gatto
The persistence of the enemies of Phonics is nothing short of amazing, and equally amazing is the fact that most parents are blissfully unaware that their young children are not being taught real phonics in school.
For a good example of phonics for 4-6 year olds see "An Ant - Learn to Read" by Kallie Woods.
An Ant - Learn to Read, Book 1, Home School Version
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Great book that ppl should know & read, exposes the cover up & harms the ability to read,,,,,Published 17 months ago by Nancy Stanley
I always wanted to read this book so was delighted when I found a used copy to purchase. The book was in good condition.Published on April 29, 2013 by Robert L.
In `Why Johnny Still Can't Read: A New Look at the Scandal of Our Schools`,
Mr. Flesch attempts to discredit the `look-say` method (visual reading),
in favour of the... Read more