TEACHING OF LANGUAGE AND PRE-PRIMARY SCHOOL CHILDREN’S READING READINESS IN HAMISI SUB-COUNTY, VIHIGA COUNTY, KENYA

Andahi Victor Serede, Teresa Mwoma

Abstract


One of the four skills of language development is reading. It is a form of communication that can be used in both official and informal situations. Reading entails the decoding of communicative symbols in order to get meaning from them. Children's early experiences with language lay a strong basis for future reading achievement. This article presents findings from a study that was carried out in Hamisi Sub-County in Vihiga County. The goal of the study was to look at language instruction and pre-primary school children's reading readiness. The research was guided by Vygotsky's sociocultural theory. The study utilized a descriptive survey research design. The study sample was 72 schools selected from a total of 238 to represent 30% of the school population. The schools were sampled using stratified random sampling to ensure that each division was represented by at least 18 out of the 72 schools sampled. Purposeful sampling technique was used to select two language teachers from each pre-primary school. One class was observed during a language session and five children were assessed in reading using the reading readiness assessment checklist in 30% of the sampled schools. On the study questions, headteachers and managers from the sampled schools were interviewed. Questionnaires, an interview schedule a reading readiness checklist and an observation schedule were used to collect data. Test re-test was used to establish whether the tools were reliable. The Alpha reliability coefficient of 0.9 from Cronbach’s convinced the researchers that the instruments were reliable. Data was analyzed both qualitatively and quantitatively. Findings revealed that the success rate of using the language teaching techniques was moderate, with only (47%) of students in the tested schools being well equipped in reading readiness. Findings further revealed that teaching strategy had little or no impact on learners' reading preparation. The most common teaching and learning resources, according to the study are those that are available locally (52.5 percent). The study also revealed that teaching the first language encourages the acquisition of a second language (85 percent). As a result, first language development must be nourished, nurtured, and improved in order to facilitate English learning, which has a significant impact on reading readiness. The study established that the learners' social environment, educational environment and family economic situation all had a significant impact on their language learning and eventual reading readiness (47 percent). The study concluded that the environment has the greatest impact on pre-primary school children's reading readiness. Parents are encouraged to enroll their children in pre-primary schools in order to get the benefits of the first level of education.

 

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reading readiness, teaching strategies, preschool, teaching resources

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.46827/ejse.v8i2.4279

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