Multimodal modelling of self-directed reading comprehension strategies in the Foundation Phase to improve comprehension skills
Solomons, Lorna Dorita
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In this research, multimodal modelling of self-directed reading comprehension strategies in the Foundation Phase was explored. The results of the systemic tests done by the Western Cape Education Department and PIRLS (2016) have shown that learners in the Foundation Phase have difficulty reading for meaning. The problem driving this research was to explore how teachers could be empowered to teach reading comprehension strategies and to incorporate multimodal modelling and to encourage self-directed learning in the Foundation Phase. The theories that pertained to reading (an important aspect of reading comprehension) underpinning this research relate to the simple view of reading, the schema theory and the social constructivist theory. The simple view of reading involves a psychologically based framework composed of two main sections that are key to reading, namely word recognition (decoding) and linguistic (language) comprehension. The schema theory entails reading, listening and comprehension. The original theoretical concept of social constructivism was that learning happens and is abetted during social exchanges. The theoretical framework for self-directed learning comprises constructivism, social constructivism, the socio-cultural theory of learning, Bandura’s social learning theory and self-determination theory. This research involved qualitative research which included an intervention encompassing an in-depth modelling of the reading comprehension skills for teachers in the Foundation Phase within the Western Cape. The research was paradigmatically situated in interpretivism. Purposive sampling was used to select the research participants, who were teachers and departmental officials. Initially, a literature study was done to discuss reading and reading comprehension, self-directed learning, and multimodal learning. Open-ended questionnaires, focus group and individual, semi-structured interviews were used to gather information. The findings suggest that reading comprehension strategies need to be taught in the Foundation Phase using various strategies. Teachers need to support learners to become self-directed in their learning and reading. The use of technology in the classroom caters for the needs of all learners, including those with diverse and special needs. An important finding during the research process was that in multi-grade classes the teachers have been supporting learners to be self-directed in their learning so that the teacher becomes the facilitator of learning.
- Education