|dc.description.abstract||The purpose of this study was to determine the knowledge and skills of Foundation
Phase teachers in the North West Province, with regard to the identification of reading
difficulties in English as First Additional Language.
A literature study was done on the Literacy Programmes in the Foundation Phase, as
well as the theories of language development and the development of reading skills. The
prevalence of reading difficulties in English First Additional Language was also
investigated. The empirical research included a sample of teachers in the Foundation
Phase in the North West Province, regarding their identification of reading difficulties in
English First Additional Language, as described by themselves in open-ended
questionnaires. The research was a qualitative study - the answers of the teachers to
the open-ended questions were analysed by the researcher according to themes. The
results of the empirical study were also integrated with the literature (literature control).
During this integration the results of the empirical study were discussed in the light of the
aims and purposes of the research.
The researcher concluded that the learners in this study did not experience out of the
ordinary learning difficulties. This means that the learning difficulties they experienced
are commonly described in the literature. However, the teachers participating in this
study did not succeed in correctly identifying all the reading difficulties. This, together
with the literature study, led to the conclusion that most teachers in this study lacked
intensive knowledge with regard to the identification of reading difficulties and the
associated support techniques. On a positive note the teachers' awareness of emotional
problems, hyperactivity and/or attention deficiency, should be mentioned. These can
contribute to reading difficulties and even bigger learning difficulties.
This study focused only on the identification and assessment of reading difficulties in a
few schools in the Foundation Phase (in the North West Province). The conclusion was
made that teachers do have a need for further in-service training, developing their skills
and expertise with regard to the identification, assessment and support of reading
difficulties. This opens this field of study to further research, focusing on in-service training of teachers in the identification, assessment and support of reading difficulties in
English First Additional Language.||