News clipping – The Mercury – 7 March 2011

Grammar will be taught differently

The teaching of grammar is an essential part of the language curriculum and will be reflected in new curriculum documents, says the Department of Basic Education.

This was after an article in The Mercury, which said teachers were “horrified” about a new curriculum document that would mean the teaching of grammar in home languages disappeared from Grade 10 upwards.

Grammar is now being covered as a separate section in language teaching.

Department spokesman Granville Whittle said the Curriculum and Assessment Policy Statement for Further Education and Training: language teaching had not yet been completed. It was still being edited.

Whittle said trends worldwide promoted an “integrated approach” to language teaching where grammar was not separated from writing and literature components either in teaching or assessment.

The South African Council for English Education noted with great concern the “downgrading of the teaching of language structure and usage” and urged the department to reconsider this decision.

Teachers’ union, Naptosa president, Ezra Ramasehla said an integrated approach might be successful where the language of teaching and learning was the same as the home language, or where pupils had a solid foundation in the language of learning.

By Michelle Jones