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Azlie Bin Ibrahim1,Hamidah Yamat2

1Sekolah Kebangsaan Garama, Beaufort
1,2Faculty of Education, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia


Teaching reading is not an easy task especially to beginners. It is a complex process and systematic
instruction is needed. In line with that, the phonics approach was introduced by the Ministry of Education
in to equip students with reading readiness and later reading fluency. It is believed that systematic and
explicit phonics instruction also helps students to read accurately. Hence, this paper presents and discusses
a study investigating the effectiveness of systematic and explicit phonics instruction in teaching reading
among students in a rural school. 11 LINUS pupils from a rural primary school in Beaufort, Sabah were
purposively selected. A pre and post test quasi experimental design was employed. The finding shows that
the students’ reading scores improved as they began to read accurately from syllables to whole words. It is
concluded that the systematic and explicit approach in phonics instructions helped these LINUS students to
remember the sounds and systematically string them when reading words. This implies the potential of
phonics approach even for students in rural areas and that more exposure and training should be provided
for teachers to incorporate this approach in teaching reading.

Keyword: systematic phonics instruction, reading skills, LINUS, rural area, second language learners (L2)