Thursday, August 19, 2010

Word list for year 1 primary students 2010

When I was a little girl and going to school there was a list of words that I was expected to know by the end of my first year of education. I've no idea if I made it, but would be pretty sure that I didn't as I couldn't really read until I hit collage.
I know that time has not produced change and there is still a list of words, probably even the same words.

I have just started Dumbing us down by John Gatto. I have only just started the introduction and after watching our daughter playing her first computer game (that is not Dora explorer) I realize that the idea of need to know first words is a bit...well old/odd/stupid?
Are children cakes that need to have the right ingredients and if they don't they will not make it to be an edible cake?
Is it right to have the same cake everywhere?In every town?
What happens if the ingredients available just do not work with the recipe (as in everyone is different) but would still make a good cake if another recipe was used.
Do all cakes have to start at the same time and finish at the same time?

This quote is from Dumbing us Down: Technology now makes it possible for individuals to learn whatever they wish, whenever they wish, and in the manner they wish. Students should be empowered with both the technology and the responsibility for their own learning and educational timetable.

The list of first words depends on the child's environment.
My daughters first spoken word (other than Mumma and Dadda) was "woo woo" (as in woof woof) as there is a dog next door that barks all day.
My son's first word was "morrmowa" (as is lawnmower) as both he and Daddy mow the lawn together.

In our environment we do a lot of cooking, art work, out door exploring and so on but a part that I can see will grow is the interacting with the computer.
So our word lists would have different words and should we really need to know the in's and out's of these words...I do not know?

One list could be...
  • Start
  • OK
  • Cancel
  • Search
  • Save
  • Delete (this is a funny one..ask an 80 year old bushman (my Grandpa) what this means)
  • File
  • Libraries
  • Documents
  • Pictures
  • Video
  • Music
This is only a start and would work for our children as a computer is apart of their life. But what about the bakers son down the road (if he gets to help do the baking) his list could be the same but with added personal words like; flour, butter, mix, temperature and so on.

These lists of words need to come from and be a part of our children's world to make them interesting, useful and understood.
But why limit our children to lists...they can have any word...and the in the opposite camp why create fear if they do not know the words?

More to think about...

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