Anne Syomwene


Language is very important in our lives. Through language, we convey our feelings, desires, and thoughts. Of importance is English language in Kenya which is the medium of instruction from upper primary school and beyond. English is taught as a Second Language in schools in Kenya and has implications to the school curriculum and education in general. This paper is a discussion of the Social Development and Interaction theory advanced by Vygotsky (1978) and its implications for English language teaching in Kenya. This theory formed the theoretical framework for a study that looked at the teaching of English oral communication skills in upper primary school in a particular district in Kenya in the year 2009. This paper is drawn from part of the literature review that guided the study and the recommendations that the study arrived at. The study utilized a qualitative research approach with a heuristic methodology. The research population consisted of primary school teachers teaching English in upper primary classes and standard six pupils. Data was collected using structured and focused group interview schedules, observation checklists, and document analysis. In the light of the findings, the study concluded that the kind of new language items, learning activities and methods of conveying the meaning of new language items that the teachers selected were inadequate and ineffective in enhancing interaction. So were the practice activities adopted by the teachers and the strategies used in motivating learners in the teaching and learning of oral communication skills. The argument advanced in this paper is that effective teaching of English language in Kenya demands an interactive approach. In other words, English teachers should use interactive strategies in their teaching because as Vygotsky (1978) argues, children learn language best through interaction.


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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.46827/ejes.v0i0.52


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