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Teaching literacy in Fiji classrooms: curriculum innovation at Levuka Public Primary School

Lagi, Rosiana (2019) Teaching literacy in Fiji classrooms: curriculum innovation at Levuka Public Primary School. Directions: Journal of Educational Studies, 33 (1). pp. 52-59. ISSN 1011-5B46

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Literacy is the ability to read, write, think critically and make wise decisions. Although education is free in Fiji, more than 50% of primary schools in Fiji scored below average in the Literacy Assessment in 2013. This article explores the main literacy problems in Levuka Public Primary School and highlights the school approach implemented to address the literacy issues. Using the qualitative approach, data was collected through Talanoa (an indigenous Fijians’ culturally acceptable way of collecting information through oral communication) and lesson observation. This article discoversthat the main literacy problems are speech sounds (phonology), spelling (orthography) and the lack of relevant reading materials. Students who cannot sound letters are not able to pronounce, spell and read. To address these issues, a school based approach was taken by first teaching students in infant classes’ vernacular phonics before bridging this skill to English phonics. Then, in situations where students still find difficulties in understanding English vocabulary, teachers code switch to vernacular and English to explain. Finally, fundraising was held by the school for the purchase of relevant reading materials to broaden students’ vocabulary and improve their literacy skills. All in all, this approach can be replicated in schools that have similar problems. If this is done, the literacy skills of children in Fiji will be improved and so their academic performance and critical thinking skills.

Item Type: Journal Article
Subjects: L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB2361 Curriculum
L Education > LC Special aspects of education
Divisions: School of Pacific Arts, Communication and Education (SPACE)
Depositing User: Ms Shalni Sanjana
Date Deposited: 31 Mar 2023 00:43
Last Modified: 31 Mar 2023 00:43

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