The Impact of Instructional Transition on Grade 4 Learners’ Academic Engagement: Mother Tongue to English, South Africa (77810)

Session Information: Teaching and Learning
Session Chair: Yun-Hsia Liang

Sunday, 26 May 2024 10:20
Session: Session 1
Room: Room 604
Presentation Type: Oral Presentation

All presentation times are UTC + 9 (Asia/Tokyo)

This study explored the impact of English as the language of instruction on grade 4 learners’ academic engagement. Vygotsky’s socio-cultural theory underpinned this study. The study employed a qualitative approach guided by the case study design. Purposive sampling was used to select five learners from the cohort of 70 to participate in the semi-structured interviews and on the other hand all 70 learners were observed learning mathematics. The data were collected using semi-structured interviews and the observations. Thematic analysis was employed to analyse qualitative data. Learners were unable to: follow basic instructions in English, ask questions in English, communicate in English many used their mother tongue, discuss the task at hand using English, confidently answer mathematical questions in English, participate and engage in their small groups in English. In the classroom: the teachers mostly used code-switching, overcrowded classes, the teacher used banking method of teaching, the main resources were the chalkboard and chalk, more than two learners sharing a textbook. We, therefore, recommend: mathematics teacher to provide learners with extra language classes to prepare them for the complex mathematics concepts taught in grade 4, question papers to be set in both mother tongue and English so that learners who are not competent in English can gradually grasp the concepts and understand them better, mathematics lessons to be more practical than rote learning, learners to be given homework regularly, mathematics teacher to meet regularly and discuss how to deal with language issues in their classrooms.

Zine Njebedulana, Walter Sisulu University, South Africa
Shakespear Maliketi Chiphambo, Walter Sisulu University, South Africa

About the Presenter(s)
About the Presenter(s)
Professor Shakespear M. Chiphambo is an Associate Professor of Mathematics Education at Walter Sisulu University in South Africa, Interested in teaching geometry, measurement, primary school mathematics and science education

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Posted by Clive Staples Lewis

Last updated: 2023-02-23 23:45:00