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Rhodes > English Language and Linguistics > Research > Psycholinguistic perspectives on Early Literacy: A focus on Southern-Bantu Language Learning

Psycholinguistic perspectives on Early Literacy: A focus on Southern-Bantu language learning

Included under this project title are two research projects:

1. Translanguaging practices in multilingual pre-school classrooms

2. Linguistic Analysis of the Early Grade Reading Studies in South Africa

 

Translanguaging practices in multilingual pre-school classrooms

Ms Tracy Probert

The aim of this project is to conduct research which relates to the linguistic underpinnings of early literacy, especially as it relates to the indigenous languages and multilingual practices in South African education. The specific aim of the study is to investigate the ways in which translanguaging is used by teachers and learners at selected pre-schools in Grahamstown, Eastern Cape. In doing so, exploring the effect of translanguaging on the language practice and literacy outcomes of learners from a linguistics perspective.

 

The objectives of the research are as follows:

  • Observe and describe patterns of translanguaging in a multilingual classrooms.
  • Examine how translanguaging facilitates and/or hinders pedagogical activities in a multilingual classrooms.
  • Identify the discourse patterns of translanguaging in language and literacy learning and teaching in these multilingual classrooms.
  • Identify the level and functions of translanguaging used by teachers and learners in these multilingual classrooms.

 

Learner completing a morphological awareness task

Linguistic Analysis of the Early Grade Reading Studies in South Africa

Ms Tracy Probert (Rhodes University) and Ms Maxine Schaefer (UNISA)

This collaborative research project “Linguistic Analysis of the Early Grade Reading Studies in South Africa” seeks to provide nuanced linguistic analysis of the quantitative data from the Early Grade Reading Studies, run by the Department of Basic Education (DBE) of South Africa, to add to the growing body of literature on cognitive-linguistic and reading skills in African languages and English in South Africa.  The aim of the project is to better understand how literacy develops longitudinally in first language Setswana, isiZulu, and Siswati, and second language English speaking children in the Foundation Phase in South Africa.

 

The research questions that guide this project include but are not limited to:

  1. How does reading fluency develop over time in the African languages?
    1. What are the most important skills for the development of oral reading fluency and comprehension?
  2. What is the relationship between first language African language literacy and English second language literacy?
    1. Does this relationship differ between Nguni and Sotho languages?
    2. Does this relationship change over time?
  3. What are the predictors of spelling and writing ability in the African languages and English?
  4. How should these early literacy skills be measured more accurately in the African languages?
  5. What implications do these findings have on how reading should be taught in African languages?

 

 

 

Last Modified: Mon, 20 May 2019 16:44:21 SAST