The re-birth of South Africa in 1994 has brought the implementation of effective educational policies. Simultaneously, the Outcomes-Based Education (OBE) approach has been introduced to advance teaching and learning of the Learning areas in schools in South Africa. This article focuses on the learning of English as a Second Language (ESL) in Grade eight. The focus is furthermore on schools from the Black township areas, called previously disadvantaged schools. The introduction of OBE in South Africa heralds an era of meaningful teaching. The use of OBE strives to root out the last vestiges of Apartheid education. With an OBE approach, teaching and learning activities have the aim of empowering learners to succeed in the real life after leaving school. One of the main aims of using a language, for example English, is to develop communicative competence. Communicative competence is the ability to linguistically apply the language correctly in authentic situations. English though is the first language of only 9% of South African citizens (Van der Merwe & Van Niekerk, 1994). The qualitative research method was employed for this study, using semi-structured interviews and observations as research tools. The research study on ESL teaching and learning for Grade eight classes has shown that deficiencies and ineffectiveness occur in most of the classrooms. The findings confirm that Grade eight ESL learners experience problems with ESL due to insufficient use of advanced strategies for teaching and learning by the educators.


English Second Language, ESL Classrooms, and Outcomes-Based Education

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