Definition of whole language in US English:

whole language


  • A method of teaching children to read at an early age that allows students to select their own reading matter and that emphasizes the use and recognition of words in everyday contexts.

    • ‘He may be right about phonics and whole language - I'm not an education expert and I don't know the research.’
    • ‘As a result of adopting such fads as whole language, where students are taught to ‘look and guess’, generations of students, especially boys, are placed at risk.’
    • ‘I have a strictly early childhood education background, grounded in student-centered learning, whole language, and allowing students to make their own choices.’
    • ‘The establishment of this review was a response to the heated debate over the relative merits of whole language and phonics as methods of teaching children to read.’
    • ‘From this experience, I conclude there is simply no comparison - if you want to teach a child to read, you must use phonics, not whole language or sight reading or whatever they're calling it now.’
    • ‘Despite the law, because of foot dragging by teachers and their unions which resist change, sixty percent of school systems continue to teach whole language.’
    • ‘A common sense combination of phonics and whole language is the best way to teach kids to read.’
    • ‘Rote learning by phonics drills, or whole word or whole language methods of absorption, repetition or guessing, or hoping the penny will drop by intuition, can all have casualties.’
    • ‘By the early 1980s whole language theory was dominant in schools of education and professional associations, and the direct instruction of phonics, grammar, spelling, and penmanship was out of favor.’
    • ‘The curriculum eschews the fashionable pedagogies of whole language and constructivist math.’
    • ‘Another reason might be, they assert, that more middle school teachers are implementing whole language or ‘immersion’ approaches to reading instruction, thus buying more trade books for their classrooms.’
    • ‘Barrett and Wootten also present a successful program that emphasizes active learning and whole language use and note an unusual camaraderie among students and faculty.’
    • ‘The whole language movement became popular in the 1980s and remained a primary pedagogy into the 1990s.’
    • ‘Sometimes whole language strategies are appropriate, and there needs to be active learning too.’
    • ‘And in California, the State Department of Education essentially adopted whole language and foisted that on mot of the school districts.’
    • ‘It was generally replaced in classrooms in the 1980s by the whole language method of immersing children in print and allowing them to absorb words.’
    • ‘These studies address questions of student learning, whole language instruction, and relationships between schooling and the sociocultural processes.’
    • ‘Whole language can mean simply having printed material readily available to children to use and reading to kids to get them excited about reading.’
    • ‘Illiteracy has been growing for at least four decades, and yet whole language continues to be used.’
    • ‘But, thanks to whole language, millions of schoolchildren in the 1990s never learned to read adequately.’