About the authors of the CSP Spelling and Language Programme - 29-Jun-2016
Sharon McMurray MBE
Ph.D, AMBDA, APC (Spld Assessment Practising Certificate), B.Ed, B.Sc, DASE, CCET
Sharon was appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) in the Queen's Birthday 2017 Honours list for services to Children with Literacy Difficulties and to those with Special Educational Needs.
Sharon graduated in 1980 and taught in primary schools until she moved into higher education in 2007. Sharon began developing spelling materials in 1987 when she was teaching a class of 30, 6-7 year olds. Her interest in this area and in difficulties in literacy development have been a focus of her research and study throughout her teaching career. Sharon draws on extensive teaching experience. She has taught in a wide range of schools including both preparatory and mainstream primary schools, a school for children with moderate learning difficulties and a unit for children with dyslexia. She graduated in 2004 with a Ph.D from Queens University, Belfast. The focus of her Ph.D was learning to spell and her research provides robust evidence of the importance of ensuring that children learn to spell through an integrated approach to develop orthographic, phonic and morphemic knowledge from the very beginning. The CSP Spelling and Language Programme: The Complete Spelling Programme was the focus of this research. Sharon and Christine began developing the CSP Spelling and Language Programme in 1994 and published the first three stages in 1998.
Christine Fleming M.A, B.Ed
Over her 30 years’ teaching experience, Christine has taught every year group in the primary school, in a number of different schools.
The majority of her career has been in Northern Ireland but she had the opportunity to teach for a few years in two international schools in Papua New Guinea, encountering the challenges of teaching in a different country, a different culture and a different climate! Her pupils there came from over 10 different countries and language backgrounds. She has also been involved in developing pre-literacy materials for a reading project used in teaching children in the slums of Jakarta, Indonesia.
Her working environment has primarily been in the mainstream setting, with a specific interest in literacy and also in children with special needs, including those who encounter difficulties in their learning and those who excel. In addition to her classroom experience, she has held the post of SENCO (Special Educational Needs Coordinator) in a primary school. At Education Authority (EA) level, she has been the founding leader of a team, teaching children whose mother tongue was not English. She has also had 10 years’ experience working in the Special Education sector, as Head of a Speech and Language Unit in a mainstream school, teaching children with a complex range of special needs, the common factor being communication difficulties.