Traditionally the education curriculum was content based, concentrating on teaching facts, More recently, there has been a total shift towards curriculi that are cognitively based and numerous thinking skills training programs to address cognitive teaching have been designed. This study favoured the infusion approach to teaching which incorporated cognitive and meta-cognitive skills within the existing school curriculum and the specific program chosen for this research was the Bright Start Cognitive Curriculum for Young Children, designed by Haywood, Brooks and four theorists, namely, Piaget, Vygotsky, Feuerstein and Haywood. The focus of this research was unit I of the program which concentrated on the training of self-regulation as it was the pro-gram’s assumption that self-regulation forms the grounding for the effectiveness of the rest of the program. Although this research focused on an ‘at-risk’ group of grade 0 pupils, it can have broader implications for the training of self-regulation in the general education classroom. The aim of the research was to describe the problems experienced in the application of unit I of the Bright Start program and to formulate suggestions and guidelines that could improve the effectiveness of this unit during, its implementations in an ‘at-risk’ grade 0 class. The methodological framework used to achieve this aim was the qualitative single case study. The qualitative design produced a wealth of detailed, in-depth, and descriptive data about the program’s strengths and weaknesses that were used for the purpose of establishing the guidelines. The program was implemented in the grade 0 class of ‘at-risk’ pupils, and data was collected through journals kept by the teacher and the researcher, observations by the researcher, iconic material of the lessons and an interview of the teacher at the end of the program. Content analysis was performed on the data identifying coherent and important themes and patterns that were interpreted to form the research conclusions. The conclusions from this research indicated that the difficulties experienced by the ‘at-risk’ pupils are not adequately addressed in this pro-ram. The unit did not seem long enough to produce effective change in their inhibitory systems, the content and techniques used did not sufficiently meet the needs of these pupils. Guidelines to improve the effectiveness of unit I in the implementation of all ‘at-risk’ class of grade 0 pupils were presented.
|Degree Type||Masters degree|
|Degree Description||M Ed|