The Practical  Solution for Teaching English Reading, ESL and Beyond -           file1.png

 by Thomas E. Zurinskas, creator of , Greenacres FL.

The big problem with English is its spelling .  Spelling makes it hard for even English- speaking k-3 children to learn how to read creating failures.  In 2015, 66% of USA 4th graders were below proficiency in reading  and 30%  were failures, below basic level in 2013.  This is a critical age for competency.  It creates a projected social cost in crime and financial dependence if reading is not learned.  One reason, I believe,  for reading failures is a perpetuated gap in teaching instruction that holds students back .   What can be done to help?  The answer is  truespel phonetics for initial reading instruction, and ESL and overall literacy integration.

Note that there are two ways to spell any word, traditionally and phonetically.  It has been established that the teaching of letter-sound relationships helps learning reading and is called for by the National Reading Panel of 2000 and the National Early Reading Panel   Note that as little as 18 hours of gradual phonetic instruction in k or 1st grade can establish phonemic awareness .  And once phonemic awareness is accomplished, children can WRITE phonetically as well as READ phonetically.  Thus child writing can be actual phonetic writing.

 In a new 2017 study it has been found that children who are the best readers also try to “write” phonetically as they apply their own created phonetic systems.  They are not taught academic phonetics because academic phonetics uses cryptic notation such as the British Council recommends for students and this can only confound them.  On the other hand, the US does not use special symbols.  The VOA phonetics, as an official organization for  the US, is based on regular letters .   Also avoiding special symbols is UK's, "synthetic phonics"  (which presents sounds and the letters that spell them) and now works well d in the UK .  But both the VOA notation and synthetic phonics are not true systems.  They don’t provide the total answer for kids and adults to spell what they hear phonetically in an English-based total phonetic system as a dictionary guide would do and as truespel does.   In fact adults as well learning a new language do much better in comprehension and fluency by learning it phonetically than those that learn it using wrote word method  .  And better yet if the phonetics is spelled similar to traditional spelling .

 The final answer is truespel phonetics .  Truespel is a “writable” phonetics for the first time and shows that for practical reasons an replacement is needed for academic phonetics.  Change is due to reflect practicality, just as the International Phonetic Association Journal changed from French to English in 1970  to reflect reality.  The new phonetic criteria based on the lingua franca of the world, English,.  are given here .

 Whether or not English spelling  evolves, truespel provides a second view of a word to retain in memory to help link spelling and pronunciation.   Kindergarten kids need and crave phonetics, and show this by making up invented spelling themselves .   And now phonetics is easy to learn, only 18 hours for kids, while teachers and ESL's can learn in an hour, all at no cost.  Tutorials are free on the internet and include a free two-way converter at .   Phoneme frequency data re there for teachers as well.

In summary, truespel phonetics is the way to go for teaching reading  to US K-1 kids.  It also shows USA English pronunciation to ESL's.  But more. The goal is to evolve an intermediary spelling for all languages based on English, the language all are learning   Truespel's always free.  For quick tutorials of truespel see .  To automatically convert US English to text, paste words or paragraphs into the two-way converter at .  A demo of the convertetr is at .  Once truespel is learned the student can type what they hear or say phonetically. See typing as I talk at 

Now is the time to integrate dictionaries, translation guides, and teacher's manuals to a common system.  Practical phonetics is needed and isn’t difficult any more.   The dream for the future is to integrate all languages together with truespel.

Created: 05/09/2017
Changed: 26/01/2018
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