Strategies the administrators use to support teachers teaching reading among grade five pupils in selected schools of Sinazongwe district of Southern province.

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Nyanga, Arthur
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The University of Zambia
Reading is a deliberate process of looking at and understanding written language. The aim of this study was to explore strategies the administrators use to support teachers teaching reading among grade five pupils in selected schools of Sinazongwe District of Southern Province. The research design was a case study. Qualitative methodology was used to collect and analyze data. The methods used were interviews and focus group discussion. A note book and voice recording were also used as the researcher was taking notes during the interviews. Sample random and purposive samplings were used to come up with a sample consisting of four primary schools, four headteachers, four grade five teachers, four school In-Service Coordinators, fourty pupils, ten from each school and two standard officers from the District Education Board Secretary Office (DEBS). The data was analyzed qualitatively and grouped into intensified themes generated from the research objectives. The findings revealed that headteachers used different strategies to improve teaching of reading to the learners in school such as assessment and monitoring, teachers when teaching the learners. The teachers also facilitated teachers through the provision of resources to enable them use different materials such as flash cards, books, happy readers books, basket game, bridge game and story books. This could not be achieved without the support from the headteachers. The teachers faced some challenges of teaching reading to grade five learners because of absenteeism from school because the learners were going out for fishing and ‘guarding of fields’ (Nchelela) and long distance to school which made them to miss out the literacy lessons. The learners also revealed that they had some difficulties with the help from parents with homework in reading because of high levels of illiteracy among the parents and wished administrators took it upon themselves to write to their families on the requirements needed in the teaching of reading. The measures used to address the challenges the teachers were encountering when teaching reading were provision of reading materials and training of teachers. The study recommended that the Ministry of General Education should make deliberate efforts to encourage the support the in-service training and capacity professional development in their schools to support the in-service training of teachers through conducting workshops in order to improve the methodologies used when teaching. It was established that the administrators should revive the Family Pac arrangements where parents were taking part in the learning of their children. This is despite the challenges parents faced in giving comments on the homework due to high levels of illiteracy among them. It was found that girls were better than their counterparts the boys in terms of reading. It was recommended that the Ministry of General Education would do well to continue to partnering with the Non-Governmental Organisations so that they can help out in the building of infrastructure development and provision of reading materials. The study also established that the headteachers should sensitize the parents on the importance of Education to their children and this could be exhibited through the support giving of reading materials, for example. The study also found out that both internal and the external monitoring of teachers should be intensified in all schools to ensure that reading is being improved from the learners.
Supporting teachers' growth.