n Mousaion - Creating a Foundation Phase classroom that promotes reading amongst children

Special issue 1
  • ISSN : 0027-2639



Reading is an essential component of early childhood development. The ability to read is a foundation that paves the way for further learning. The environment within which initial reading is taught is crucial for the future development of young children. Therefore, classrooms in the Foundation Phase (grades R to 3) need to be geared towards promoting reading. This article explores the role of reading in the Foundation Phase, as envisaged by the National Curriculum Statement (NCS) and the Foundations for Learning Campaign. The central focus of this article is on practical ideas that Foundation Phase teachers can use in their classrooms to promote reading in children. These practical ideas, based on my extensive professional experience, are aimed at the interest level of Foundation Phase learners. Some of the subsections of this article are word recognition; storytelling and news; creating an interest in newspapers; journals kept by teachers and learners; breakthrough words; handwriting; chalkboard writing and writing on charts; use of readers; use of charts; reading table (mini-library); practice and teaching of reading and writing; phonetic development; remediation; second-language learners; word / picture matching; making own resources; visual stimuli in class; competitions; special days; use of song and dance; games; reading of instructions; using the telephone; reading road signs; themes to teach reading; reading checklist for teachers; and teaching parents to teach reading. This article concludes with suggestions for teaching reading to children from rural, disadvantaged and impoverished backgrounds.

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