Exploring pupils’ reading abilities of texts written in English as a foreign language: a case of the teaching and learning of English in a low resource primary school in Mtwara municipal

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Education (MEd)

First Supervisor/Advisor

Ms.Mary Oluga

Second Supervisor/Advisor

Prof. Marriote Ngwaru


Institute for Educational Development, East Africa


The issue of reading is very challenging, and the reading of the foreign language texts is much more difficult. Learners find it difficult to develop reading abilities of the texts written in a foreign language such as English. In Tanzania, the impact of local language‘s pronunciation towards English pronunciation makes the process of reading English texts worse. In public primary schools, the learners‘ low proficiency in reading English texts delays their performance in English subject. This is a qualitative study which was carried out to explore the pupils‘ reading abilities of the texts written in EFL. The study was conducted to standard six pupils in the low-resource context of Maisha (pseudonym) primary school. The study used the tools; observation checklist guide in observing 10 standard six pupils for reading activities, and in observing 52 standard six pupils for lesson observation. It also used interview guide in controlling the face to face interview with a teacher of EFL. The study used document analysis protocol which guided the reviews EFL documents. A tape recorder was also used to record interview talks and it used the camera to capture setting of ten pupils in reading activities. Findings from the analysed data indicated that the pupils in Maisha primary school were heavily influenced by their local languages‘ pronunciation such as Kimakonde and Kiswahili pronunciation in articulating English words. This led them to have poor reading abilities in EFL texts. As a result, this study, therefore, recommended that the pupils in low-resource contexts should be given enough reading materials, competent teachers and they should be sensitised about the importance of learning how to read EFL texts.

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