Noah Kenny Sichula: Integrating the Socially Constructed Pedagogy in Non‒School Based Adult Literacy Classes

  • mwape mwape
Keywords: Adult literacy, pedagogical practices, socially constructed pedagogy.


This study sought to explore the integration of the socially constructed pedagogy in adult literacy classes by the adult literacy learning facilitators in Mkushi District of Zambia, under the Department of Community Development. The study focused on the teaching of farming literacies to small scale farmers as recommended by the Department of Community Development. This study sought to answer two research questions: The first question aimed at finding out how the adult literacy learning facilitators socially constructed pedagogy, and the second research question focused on understanding how the socially constructed pedagogy was integrated into the teaching of farming literacies. This study followed a qualitative research approach and data was collected through face‒to‒face interviews and class observations of the adult literacy learning facilitators. The findings of the study show a concentration on school based literacy skills of reading and writing, with minimal emphasis on the application of these skills in real life. In addition, not all facilitators were able to socially construct pedagogy because they lacked training in adult learning pedagogy. Instead, they relied on how they were taught when they were in secondary school and in college. For those who were able to construct pedagogy, they applied it in a situated manner, largely characterised by locally generated resources and practices. This approach was seemingly responsible for fostering a sense of belonging and ownership of the teaching‒learning activities exhibited by the adult learners. The facilitators incorporated some of the locally based literacy practices in their effort to make learning relevant to the adult learners. The study concluded that the ideal platform for the integration of the socially constructed pedagogy in adult literacy classes is by adhering to the adult learning principle of beginning from the perspective of the adult learners as opposed to applying the one–size–fits all pedagogy. The study also included that literacy and learning are situated practices, and there is not one universal pedagogy but multiple situated pedagogies. Therefore, the study recommended the need for regular evaluation of pedagogies applied in adult literacy classes which should be followed by regular professional development of the facilitators in adult learning pedagogy. This may also involve regular refresher courses for those already trained in adult learning pedagogy.