Original Research

The effectiveness of Grade 3 teachers’ implementation of poetry through play pedagogies

Charity Z. Fynn, Blanche Ndlovu
South African Journal of Childhood Education | Vol 14, No 1 | a1368 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajce.v14i1.1368 | © 2024 Charity Z. Fynn, Blanche Ndlovu | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 20 April 2023 | Published: 15 March 2024

About the author(s)

Charity Z. Fynn, Department of Languages and Social Sciences, Faculty of Education, University of Zululand, Empangeni, South Africa
Blanche Ndlovu, Department of Childhood Education, Faculty of Education, University of the Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa


Background: Poetry predates all other genres of literature, and it has been argued that the relationship between poetry and language is inextricable. The ability of African people to articulate their own stories was largely silenced by colonialism. Poems and lyrics have been known to create a bridge between individuals in meaningful words and songs.

Aim: This article explores Grade 3 teachers’ experiences of teaching poetry and their utilisation of play pedagogies to enhance learning and make it pleasurable.

Setting: Three schools in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, were purposively selected because of their rural location. The sample comprised six Grade 3 teachers who worked in these three rural primary schools. The learners in the study were using isiZulu as a language of learning and teaching.

Methods: Semi-structured interviews, document analysis and non-participant observations were employed to generate the data.

Results: Regardless, Grade 1 teachers know their knowledge of the value of play pedagogies in the development of young children.

Conclusion: Researchers suggest that Grade 3 teachers need to align their practice and lesson plans with Curriculum and Assessment Policy Statement (CAPS) proposals and guidelines. Moreover, play pedagogies need to be implemented and these need to be realistically aligned with allocated time frames and available resources to mitigate the severe restraints that impede effective poetry teaching as a tool for facilitating learning.

Contribution: To ensure the success of all Grade 3 learners in the realm of poetry understanding and writing, it is imperative that Foundation Phase (FP) teachers align their teaching to the CAPS pedagogies to expose learners to various forms of poetry.


poetry; Grade 3; teaching; learning; zone of proximal development; rural areas


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