The Unofficial Practices: What Are the Children Telling Us?

  • Esther Mukewa Lisanza


This chapter discusses children-controlled practices (i.e., the unofficial curriculum) at Nyika and Mutituni schools in Kenya. These practices include talking, reading and writing (i.e., drawing and printing). This chapter brings to the fore what children possess and can do using the available resources, for instance, multilingualism, wall charts, books (i.e., storybooks and textbooks), their experiences, their imagination and so on. Through the unofficial curriculum, children in both schools were involved in meaningful activities which gave them agency in their language and literacy development. The chapter shows how talk, drawing and reading of storybooks play a major role in the development of children’s oral and written language. The data from this chapter also show that children’s writing is not necessarily linear.


Unofficial curriculum Children-controlled practices Agency Drawing Stories Storybooks 


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© The Author(s) 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Esther Mukewa Lisanza
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of African StudiesHoward UniversityWashington, DCUSA

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