The Role of Culture in the Experiences of Pre-Service Teachers in Using IsiXhosa to Teach Science Subjects in Grade 4-9
International Journal of Education, Culture and Society
Volume 2, Issue 6, December 2017, Pages: 158-164
Received: Feb. 14, 2017; Accepted: Feb. 23, 2017; Published: Nov. 24, 2017
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Nozuko Zukiswa Gxekwa, Department of African Languages, IsiXhosa, Faculty of Humanities and Social Science, University of Fort Hare, East London, South Africa
Nomsa Satyo, Department of African Languages, IsiXhosa, Faculty of Humanities and Social Science, University of Fort Hare, East London, South Africa
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There are language limitations that can prevent certain concepts from being part of a culture. In other words, there is an intricate relationship between culture and language that cannot be denied in any context including science education at primary school level. The purpose of this study is to identify and offer solutions to the main challenges that are experienced by pre-service teachers in using isiXhosa as a medium of instruction in teaching scientific subjects such as Biology, Geography and Life Orientation. The theoretical frameworks used in this study drew from the theory of cognitive dissonance and cultural linguistics. A purposive sample of thirteen pre-service teachers who were majoring in these subjects was used. Data was collected during teaching practice, using classroom observations and one-on-one interviews, and it was inductively analysed into four themes reflecting cultural experiences that do not translate directly between cultures, use of “taboo words”, dialects and “ukuhlonipha” a form of respect for elders, married women and initiates in isiXhosa.
Culture Specific, Cognitive Dissonance, Ukuhlonipha, Science Subjects, Dialects, Sensitive and Taboo Words, Pre-service Teachers
To cite this article
Nozuko Zukiswa Gxekwa, Nomsa Satyo, The Role of Culture in the Experiences of Pre-Service Teachers in Using IsiXhosa to Teach Science Subjects in Grade 4-9, International Journal of Education, Culture and Society. Vol. 2, No. 6, 2017, pp. 158-164. doi: 10.11648/j.ijecs.20170206.11
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This article is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License ( which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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