The evidence “is about as close to conclusive as research on complex human behavior can get!” Eye-tracking studies & brain scans show that learning to read, is the work of deliberately practicing how to quickly connect the letters on the page to the sounds we hear each day. Genuine literacy teachers know phonics alone isn’t the answer; struggling students need to grapple with more advanced, interesting books, so they won’t get stuck in a cycle of low expectations & boredom. Kids in early elementary school would spend 1/2 of their reading/writing time on quality phonics, so that by 3rd grade, most students would not need explicit phonics. BUT, “the science that you need to know it is good. The science on how to teach it effectively is not.” And the education ‘market’ thrives on pushing the ‘debate ’into the classroom-practice of the teacher who knows what learning looks like!.