Whole Language

"Whole Language" should not be confused with the "whole word" method of Edward Ward (1890's) or William Gray(1920's). Both of these methods can be traced back in the nineteenth century to several scholars in Europe. But Ken Goodman agrees that starting with the word gives students a meaning and context which starting with letters or word-parts such as syllables or word roots cannot do (assuming the child knows the word).

When Horace Mann and his wife Mary Peabody Mann honeymooned in Europe in the 1840's, they learned of the "whole word" teaching in Germany by Friedrich Gedike, and probably the "whole word" teaching made very popular in France by Jean Joseph Jacotot, which was based on Gedike.

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Author: Bob_Doyle
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