Our journey in exploring and learning the isiXhosa Language and the culture in which it is embedded, starts informally in Grade 3. The focus at this stage is to encourage the children to develop an awareness of, and an appreciation for, the unique qualities of the language through games, songs, poetry and African folklore. The emphasis is on developing a love of the language and on experimenting with all the sounds that are unique to the language in an interactive and play orientated environment.
The children are exposed to the written language from Grade 4 onwards, by which stage the sounds of the language have started to “click” in and the children are ready to make the connections between the written and the spoken language. The children are challenged to recognise and predict patterns in the language from an early age and encouraged to appreciate the poetically rich and naturally musical nature of the language. This opens up many opportunities to teach in collaboration with other subjects and learning areas such as Music, Drama, Information Technology and Life Orientation.
Most of our lessons happen outside of the classroom. This allows for more practical and meaningful interaction between the children and offers them the freedom to work in smaller groups and experiment with the sounds of the language in a less formal environment. Great emphasis is placed on encouraging the children to put into practice all they are learning through active engagement in class activities.
Mrs Jo Knowles
Head of isiXhosa