Implementation of the Communicative Approach Techniques by Teachers of French in Secondary Schools in Kabwe District, Central Province, Zambia
Keywords: Communicative Approach, Communicative Competence, French as Foreign Language, Teachers, Understanding, Application, Challenges, Kabwe
AbstractFrench has been taught in Zambia as a Foreign Language even before independence. Manchishi and Chishiba (2016) indicate that French was introduced in African schools, as a subject, in the educational system of the then Northern Rhodesia in 1953. At that time, French was offered at Munali Boys Secondary School, in Lusaka and Chipembi Girls in Chisamba. In 1964, when Zambia obtained its Political Independence from Britain, the teaching of French spread to 12 other secondary schools. The French Language Syllabus for Secondary Schools recommends that teachers of French use Communicative Language Teaching in their teaching to enable the learners develop Communicative Competence (MESVTEE, 2013). The study explored the implementation of CLT in Government Secondary Schools of Kabwe District. The purpose of the study was to establish how teachers of French as a Foreign Language in Kabwe District were implementing the Communicative Language Teaching Approach, as recommended by the Syllabus and the extent of the implementation. The objective of the study was to assess teachers’ understanding of CLT, The study employed a descriptive design under qualitative approach. The study participants comprised of 14 teachers, 3 subjects specialists and 178 pupils who were purposively sampled. Data was collected through interview guides, naturalistic observation schedules and Focus Group Discussions guide and analyzed using thematic analysis. The study findings revealed that teachers had very little ideas that CLT aims at making learners attain communicative competence. Bordering on the findings of the study, the following recommendations were made. Among them, the need for the trainers of teachers of French to be practical and not theoretical in their training. The study recommended that teachers of French be sensitized on the need to implement the recommended approach. The sensitization will act as a Continuous Professional Development (CPD) to remind them of the pedagogical requirements of the syllabus and also that monitoring of teachers by standard officers should be effectively done and there should be increased funding to schools, the French Section in particular so that equipment and materials to support CLT is procured.