A critical analysis of the importance of oracy in the classroom, with particular reference to secondary schools in the Cape Education Department

Malherbe, Neil (1995) A critical analysis of the importance of oracy in the classroom, with particular reference to secondary schools in the Cape Education Department. Masters thesis, Rhodes University.

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In the past thirty years, oracy has received prominence as a means to enhance teaching styles and assist with learning. Much of what has been written in this field has been by those interested in a 'language across the curriculum' approach, such as Barnes (1969) who developed the terms 'exploratory talk' and 'final draft talk'. The linguist, M.A.K. Halliday {1989} and others have suggested that the teacher's approach should be to encourage what he terms 'heuristic talk' i.e. relatively unstructured exploratory language used by the pupils in talking towards an understanding of a concept. It is more evident in certain school subjects that pupils may have difficulty in understanding abstract or complex concepts. In this regard, English, mathematics and physical science were selected for the purpose of this study, as each has its own metalanguage, specific to that subject. It is presumed that some pupils may find difficulty in these subjects because of the subject-specific language inherent in each. This work explores whether a programme of increased oracy alleviates some of these problems and it makes recommendations for the implementation of such a programme. The period involved for the purpose of this study was five weeks, during which teachers of three selected classes presented lessons in such a way that oral work was stressed. At the completion of this programme, a test was written for comparison with past experiences. Pupils answered a comprehensive questionnaire and staff involved were interviewed; the results of this feedback, in conjunction with what has been written by others in this field, forms the basis for this work. The primary recommendation emerging from this and other studies is that a shift away from a teacher-/ and textbook-dominated approach isnecessary. Pupils need to contextualise knowledge in their own terms. One important way of accomplishing this is by affording them theopportunity to interact orally with each other and with the teacher

Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Uncontrolled Keywords:Education, Oracy, Communication, Discussion, Classroom
Subjects:L Education > L Education (General)
Divisions:Faculty > Faculty of Education > Education
Supervisors:Van der Mescht, H.
ID Code:3785
Deposited By: Mrs Carol Perold
Deposited On:23 Oct 2012 13:59
Last Modified:23 Oct 2012 13:59
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