Sequential bilingualism and the teaching of language skills to early primary school pupils in Nigeria
Languages of publication
This paper argues that the poor mastery of language skills in Nigeria's educational system can be attributed partly to the poor methods of teaching language skills in the system, especially in early primary education. Given the fact that the bilingual concept is entrenched in the 1977 (revised 1981) Nigeria National Policy on Education, the approach of ‘simultaneous’ bilingualism has been utilised in teaching mother tongue and English language skills - listening, speaking, reading and writing - in the primary schools for a long time now. The use of this approach is noticeable, especially, in classroom presentation and text book development. However, it is apparent that the approach has not been effective and, thus, has not enhanced the inculcation of permanent literacy which is a major objective of the educational policy. Using illustrations from some common Yoruba (mother tongue) and English course books for pupils in early primary education in Nigeria, the paper observes some of the limitations of simultaneously presenting language skills to children in early primary education, and suggests that the sequential presentation of skills be done to promote efficient bilingual education in the school system. The paper suggests that teachers and writers of course books of Yoruba and English should present language skills in a way in which some skills learnt earlier will facilitate the learning of later ones.
- Adegbite, W. (1993): Towards an Efficient Bilingual Programme for Teaching Language Skills in Nigérian Primary Schools. In: Literacy and Reading in Nigeria, Vol. 6, 337-352.
- Afolayan, A. (1971): Contrastive Linguistics and The Teaching of English as a Second/Foreign Language. In: English Language Teaching, Vol. X, № 3, 220-229.
- Afolayan, A. (1977): The New Language Policy and Effective Instruction in Schools. In: Language in Education in Nigeria, Vol. 1, 26-38 (Proceedings of The Language Centre, Fédéral Ministry of Education, Lagos Nigeria).
- Akindele, F. and Adegbite, W. (1992): The Sociology and Politics of English in Nigeria. Ile-Ife: Obafemi Awolowo University Press.
- Brann, C.M.B. (1977): The Rôle of Language in Nigeria Educational Policy. In: The Nigérian Language Teacher, Vol. 1, № 2.
- Cummins, J. (1979): Linguistic Interdependence and the Educational Development of Bilingual Children. In: Review of Educational Research 49(2), 222-251.
- Cummins, J. (1984): Bilingualism and Spécial Education: Issues in Assessment and Pedagogy. San Diego, CA: College Hill.
- Dulay, H., Burt, M. and Krashen, S. (1982): Language Two. New York: Oxford University Press. Fédéral Ministry of Information (1977): Fédéral Republic of Nigeria National Policy on Education (Revised 1981). Lagos, Nigeria: NERDC Press.
- Olaofe, I.A. (1983): The Rôle of Reading in Integrated Language Teaching Programmes. In: Literacy and Reading in Nigeria, Vol. 1, 182-190.
- Omojuwa, R.A (1983): A Literacy Policy for the Nigérian Educational System. In: Literacy and Reading in Nigeria, Vol. 1, 33-48.
- Omojuwa, R.A J.O. (1985): Introduction to Literacy Skills in Two Languages: A Sequential Approach. In: Literacy and Reading in Nigeria, Vol. 2, 34-47.
- Onukaogu, C.E. and Arua, A.E. (1997): Towards a Better Understanding of Reading by the Nigérian Primary School Teacher. In: Onukaogu, C.E., Arua, A.E. and Jegede, O.B. (eds.): Teaching Reading in Nigeria. Ile-Ife: TAWL, 1-29.
- Pialorsi, F. (ed.)(1974): Teaching the Bilingual Arizona. The University of Arizona Press.
- Royer, J.M. and Carlo, M.S. (1991): Transfer of Compréhension Skills from Native to Second Language. In: Journal of Reading 34:6, 450-455.
- Stewart, W.A. (1968): A Sociolinguistics Typology for Describing National Bilingualism. In:
- Fishman, J.A. (éd.): Readings in The Sociology of Language Mouton. The Hague, 531-545.
Publication order reference