Original Research

A socially inclusive teaching strategy for fourth grade English (second) language learners in a South African school

Mots'elisi L. Malebese, Moeketsi F. Tlali, Sechaba Mahlomaholo
South African Journal of Childhood Education | Vol 9, No 1 | a503 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajce.v9i1.503 | © 2019 Mots’elisi L. Malebese, Moeketsi F. Tlali, Sechaba Mahlomaholo | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 28 October 2016 | Published: 25 April 2019

About the author(s)

Mots'elisi L. Malebese, Community-Based Educational Research (COMBER), North-West University, Potchefstroom, South Africa
Moeketsi F. Tlali, School of Mathematics, Natural Sciences and Technology Education, University of the Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa
Sechaba Mahlomaholo, Teaching and Learning, University of Zululand, Richards Bay, South Africa

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Background: Learners from predominantly less priviledged South African schools encounter English as a language of teaching and learning for the first time in Grade 4. The transition from the use of home language to second language, namely English first additional language, is complexly related to the learners’ inability to read text meaningfully. This complexity is traceable to the reading materials, actual teaching practices and learners’ cultural underpinnings. Learners’ inability to read text meaningfully impacts negatively their academic performance in general.

Aim: This article demonstrates how a socially inclusive teaching strategy is used to enhance the teaching of reading in a second additional language to Grade 4 learners.

Setting: A one-teacher public school situated on a remote private property with bad access roads. Learners from neighbouring farms walked long distances to school. The teacher’s administrative work and workshops often clashed with teaching and learning that received very limited support.

Methods: The principles of the free attitude interview technique and critical discourse analysis were used to generate and analyse the data. Socially inclusive teaching strategy that is participatory action research-oriented and underpinned by critical emancipatory research principles guided the study.

Results: The use of socially inclusive teaching strategy helped improve reading of English text significantly.

Conclusion: Socially inclusive teaching strategy can help improve learning and teaching support materials, teacher support and learning.


socially inclusive teaching strategy; critical emancipatory paradigm; English First Additional Language; critical discourse analysis; public farm school


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