Early Literacy in an Emerging Society: The Missing Gaps

Ofodu, Graceful Onovughe


The paper examines the place of early literacy in an emerging society and what children have to say about their experiences. The study adopted a descriptive survey design. All basic school pupils in Ado-Ekiti, Ekiti State formed the population.  The sample consists of three hundred pupils. Simple random sampling technique was used to select the sample. The instrument used was a questionnaire which was an adopted version of Machado (1999). The reliability of the instrument was ensured by test-retest reliability method using Pearson Product Moment correlation coefficient, and a coefficient of 0.86 was obtained. Descriptive statistics of percentage and frequency counts were used to answer the two research questions raised while inferential statistics of t-test was used for the one hypothesis generated. Findings showed that there are missing gaps between the literacy activities and children's literacy development. Many parents do not engage their children in sufficient speaking activities, inquiries and discussion of books. They do not read to children, discuss television programmes and initiate family reading times. Findings also revealed parents do not provide different writing tools for children, they do not point out print and hardly create time and place for writing activities. Based on these findings, recommendation was made that, for early literacy to thrive in Nigeria, the place of the home and parents' literacy activities cannot be played down. The various ingredients that make children's literacy development a success must be nurtured and harnessed by parents for our country to have a viable manpower in the nearest future. 
Keywords: Literacy culture, Literate Behaviour, Language Development, Parents’ Literacy Activities

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