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Title: The development of reading skills in the Oshiwambo languages of the Oshana region of Namibia : a case study of Oshikwanyama and Oshindonga in Junior Primary phase
Authors: Haifidi, Eino Nghiikoshi 
Issue Date: Mar-2019
Abstract: The development and promotion of indigenous languages have been given little attention in Africa (Batibo, 2005). Namibia being part of Africa is no exception and hence there is a lack of literature regarding the indigenous languages (Smit, 2012). The study was motivated by Tötemeyer’s (2009) argument that there is a lack of reading culture which affects the development of reading skills, particularly in indigenous languages in Namibia. Since little research has been conducted in this area (Smit, 2012), there is a lack of information on indigenous language learning and development in Namibia. The study is the first of its kind done in Namibia looking at the development of reading skills in Oshikwanyama and Oshindonga concurrently as verified by the intensive review of literature done by me.
This research in form of a case study is a response to this gap in literature. The study focused on development of reading skills in two dialects of the Namibian Oshiwambo languages; namely Oshikwanyama and Oshindonga in the Junior Primary (JP) phase (grades 2 and 3). Data collected was essentially qualitative, relating to how teachers develop reading skills in indigenous languages with focus on factors facilitating or hindering the development of the reading skills. The data was collected through questionnaires, observations, interviews and focus groups discussions. The study used the interpretivist paradigm, although there are few elements of positivism.
In the findings, the study outlined factors facilitating the development of reading skills (e.g. drilling, repetition, peer reading/teaching, songs, poems, rhymes and short stories, using the Directed Reading Thinking Activity (DRTA), using scaffolding, modelling and cooperative learning strategies, using the Higher Order Thinking Skills (HOTS), using well illustrated story books with big font size, a print rich classroom environment, etc.), as well as factors hindering the development of reading skills (e.g. inappropriate use of punctuation marks, lack of readers with familiar texts and not using relevant children’s prior knowledge, poor knowledge of the relationship between letters and sounds (phonics), lack of a methodology for teaching reading, teachers’ unpreparedness, difficulties with teaching digraphs, trigraphs, quadgraphs, diphthongs and vowel confusion, lack of teaching aids and reflective teaching, lack of in-service training/workshop on reading development in Oshiwambo languages, etc.) in the two Oshiwambo languages (Oshikwanyama and Oshindonga). The study concluded with a list of recommendations for the improved development of reading skills in these languages.
Description: Submitted in fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Arts in Language Practice, Faculty of Arts and Design, Durban University of Technology, Durban, South Africa. 2019.
Appears in Collections:Theses and dissertations (Arts and Design)

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