Foundation Phase student teachers' views towards learning isiXhosa in the B Ed Teacher Education programme

Nokhanyo Mayaba


Teacher Education programmes in South Africa are mandated by the Minimum Requirements for Teacher Education Qualifications (MRTEQ) framework to ensure that students can converse competently in one of the indigenous languages.  Therefore an opportunity to learn such a local indigenous language should be given.  As part of the B Ed recurriculation process, students were involved in their learning and development of an isiXhosa module.  I conducted a qualitative inquiry with a group of 4th year foundation phase students (n=15) who volunteered to participate in this study.  The aim of this study was to explore students’ views on learning isiXhosa in their B Ed (Foundation phase) programme.  I used a draw and write/talk technique followed by semi structured group interview discussions as data generation methods.  Themes that emerged from the data revealed the following: 1) the value of learning isiXhosa for communication purposes in the classroom, 2) the recognition of isiXhosa as a resource for teaching and learning, 3) isiXhosa as an enabler to function in a multilingual society and 4) a need to design a module that enhances the acquisition of isiXhosa.  These findings suggest that teacher education programmes need to recognize the value of indigenous languages in advancing the pedagogy of teaching in multilingual classrooms.  Understanding student teachers’ views on learning an indigenous language will contribute to knowledge on the purpose of learning isiXhosa and how the current isiXhosa module is capacitating them to teach in multilingual contexts. 


Teacher Education programmes; isiXhosa conversational module; foundation phase;multilingual context; indigenous language

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ISSN 2224-0012 (online); ISSN 0259-2312 (print)

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