I am delighted to introduce you to a great friend of mine, a pioneering teacher from Solihull, who has become an internet sensation after helping almost a million people around the world to read.
Chris is quite a phenomena as he initially started to make his phonics videos for his class in Hampstead. That grew to over 240 videos and now the BBC, The Times and the internet have taken Chris to their hearts as he transforms reading into something magical and practical.
But what started out as a tool for pupils, parents and teaching staff has turned into a worldwide phenomenon, with people logging on from as far afield as Brazil and the US for the classes on “phonics”, which use the sounds of groups of letter to help with reading and writing.
To download the fantastic Mr Thorne Does Phonics App go to => http://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/mr-thorne-does-phonics-letters/id432883474?mt=8
Here is an interview from the Evening Standard
“A teacher whose spelling videos have become an internet sensation today called for more men to work in London‘s primary schools.
Christopher Thorne, 27, has posted more than 200 classes on “phonics”, which use the sounds of groups of letters to aid reading and writing. The videos, often featuring his puppy, Sophie, and Geraldine the Giraffe, have been viewed more than 500,000 times.
The year one teacher, who lives in Limehouse, said: “I got the idea after attending a phonics conference and I wanted to do something that would help teachers and parents. I couldn’t believe there was such an audience out there that wanted to improve their pronunciation and reading skills.”
He made the videos with his laptop webcam, starting with the letters A and B and moved on to long vowels and the “igh” and “ough” sounds.
Mr Thorne, who teaches at The Phoenix, an independent school for three to seven year olds in Hampstead, said: “I do it to help my class. For example, I could take my laptop to London Bridge for the ‘L’ sound.”
Mr Thorne says more men should teach young children. “Teaching infants is so much fun,” he said. “Every day for them is about enjoyment and hearing the stories you tell them. But a lot of men are frightened of teaching infants. They fear that if they pat them on the back they will end up with negative press. Hopefully, I can inspire more men to teach younger children and embrace their paternal side.”
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