Publication Date

Summer 7-12-2012

Degree Name

Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT)

First Advisor

Susan Barduhn

Second Advisor

Elizabeth Tannenbaum

Abstract

Education in Kuwait is centered on rote learning methodology. Historically, the Kuwait educational system was created to mimic the Egyptian rote learning systems that date back to Pharaonic times. Furthermore, Kuwaiti educators are convinced that rote learning is the optimal form of education. In this paper, I will attempt to prove that this method is unsuccessful, and that educators, within their classroom and lesson planning, should adapt their teaching strategies to the adoption of the whole language philosophy.

The major limitation of this research is that the observer is also participant. However, the fact that the observer is fully trained and cognizant of the methodology and procedure and will be referencing parts of the methodology within the paper in addition to applying other techniques in her lesson plans should be of assistance in overcoming this limitation.

The whole student methodological construct of this research is a structured observation instrument based on definitions and theories as defined in Yvonne and David Freeman’s (1992) book Whole Language for Second Language Learners. The Freemans are professors in the Division of Language, Literacy and Culture from the graduate school at Fresno Pacific College. They have an intensive background in applying this philosophy and assisting in the training of teachers to improve their classroom learning environment. This research will be limited to high school students in Kuwait, at the International Academy of Kuwait, in Maidan-Hawaly, Kuwait. These students are from a mixture of Arabic heritages, mostly Kuwaiti, Lebanese, Egyptian and Syrian. The students whom I have applied these various methods on are in grades 9-12th.

The whole language philosophy has been discussed in countless research mediums. This paper will explore Yvonne and David Freeman’s (1992) investigation of whole language usage for second language learners and their multiple application aspects that outline the scope of this philosophy. This information will likely impact my future teaching practices and increase the learning abilities of my students.

Disciplines

Bilingual, Multilingual, and Multicultural Education | Curriculum and Instruction | Educational Assessment, Evaluation, and Research