ERIC Number: ED458806
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2001
Reference Count: N/A
What We Know after a Decade of Hong Kong Extensive Reading Scheme.
Wong, Chun K.
If literacy is defined as the ability to read and write, in the context of Hong Kong, literacy is more commonly known as language proficiency. The introduction of the Hong Kong Extensive Reading Scheme in English (HKERS) in 1991 aimed to motivate the students to read and thus enhance their English proficiency. Yet, as of 2001, after a decade since its introduction, motivating students to read more English is still a daunting job. The attitude towards English reading among the students of Hong Kong remains negative, and the motivation to read stays at the same low level. Concern about declining English proficiency among the students is still widespread. If biliteracy (mastered written Chinese and English) and trilingualism (speak fluent Cantonese, Putonghua, and English) are the ultimate aims of Hong Kong is education policy on language proficiency, then that policy is a long way from realizing its goals. This paper attempts to look into the reasons why the English proficiency level has not changed much since the introduction of the HKERS and suggest what can be done further to make HKERS work best for the students of Hong Kong. It is suggested that general reading skills be strengthened, a favorable environment for reading be created, labeling be eliminated, the connection between reading and writing be more effectively understood, and a wide selection of authentic and relevant reading materials be made available. (Contains 17 references.) (KFT)
Descriptors: Cantonese, Elementary Secondary Education, English (Second Language), Foreign Countries, Language Planning, Language Proficiency, Literacy, Mandarin Chinese, National Programs, Reading Instruction, Reading Material Selection, Reading Materials, Reading Writing Relationship, Second Language Instruction, Second Language Learning
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Hong Kong