What is ER?

Extensive Reading is a skill of reading that aims to improve learners reading speed and reading fluency by reading easy and enjoyable texts on a regular and progressive basis. ER allows learners to meet language in its natural context thus getting exposed to a sense of how grammatical patterns work in context. This, in turn, aids in incidental acquisition of vocabulary which helps learners master language and also build confidence, motivation, enjoyment and create love for reading. Through ER, learners not only read for information, but also deepen their knowledge of already met language items which helps process language faster and improves comprehension and enjoyment.

In order for students to benefit from their Extensive Reading, they should be reading at an appropriate difficulty level and at a good speed (150-200 words per minute or a little lower for beginning students) with a major aim of practicing the skill of reading itself. Selecting appropriate reading materials can help build reading confidence, reading ability and build a life-long love of reading in English. Conversely, selecting inappropriate materials can lead to a vicious circle of poor reading.

It’s therefore essential that students choose something in their ‘comfort zone’, one in which they can read smoothly, quickly, enjoyably and with very high levels of comprehension. Because only the students know what they can and can’t cope with, selecting the right book is the student’s decision. Teachers must be flexible in providing guidance to students about most suitable titles that will allow students to read at their own ability level comfortably.  It is therefore important for the teacher to have read many of the books in their library.

The reading can be considered ‘extensive’ only when the students are reading quickly, with high levels of comprehension and without needing a dictionary. If the reading is too slow it probably means the students need to use their dictionaries often, and so this type of reading isn’t considered ‘extensive’.


Integration of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) into learning is an education approach recognized by UN STEM Policy Paper as a priority for a fast-moving technology-driven world. Unfortunately, African countries fall behind STEM education outputs compared to more developed countries with less than 25% of African higher education students pursuing STEM related career fields against more students taking social sciences and humanities while in the United States, between 2010-2018, the number of STEM bachelors degree awarded grew by 62% and 20% for all other degrees (UN, 2022). The vital role and urgent need for STEM education in Africa is articulated and emphasized in existing frameworks including Continental Education Strategy for Africa (Union, 2015), Science, Technology and Innovation for Africa (Daniels, 2017) and the East African Community Vision 2050 (Tramberend, et al., 2020). The Kenya Vision 2030 (GOK, 2008), Constitution of Kenya 2010 (Kenya, 2013), and the New National Education Curriculum released by the Ministry of Education in Kenya (MOE, 2018) accentuates this stance. English as the official medium of instruction in education institutions in Kenya (KIE, 2002) is central to STEM education as it provides meaningful contexts for learning STEM education (National Academy of Sciences, 2018).


The BASELINE SURVEY REPORT ON STATUS OF TEACHING AND LEARNING OF ENGLISH AND STEM SUBJECTS IN PILOT SECONDARY SCHOOLS IN KAKAMEGA, VIHIGA AND KISUMU COUNTIES recommended the “Need to inculcate a reading culture” by providing relevant reading materials via digital libraries”

Access to Other Extensive Reading Resources

We also provide access to Xreading.com and Mreader.org, which like MMUST-DEI PARTNERSHIP promote extensive reading in English as a Foreign Language.

Extensive Reading Foundation (ERF)

The ERF is the ultimate source of resources for researchers and teachers. An example is the Annotated Bibliography of Works on Extensive Reading in a Second Language.

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