Correspondence between Themes in ESL Textbooks and Reading Comprehension Curriculum in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan


  • hafiza Department of Education, University of Malakand
  • Itbar Khan University of Malakand


Textbooks utilized for the instruction of English as a Second Language hold significant influence over the pedagogy of reading comprehension. These textbooks serve as both instructional aids and evaluative instruments employed by teachers, while also serving as educational resources for students within the public schools of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan. According to the curriculum document, the purpose of teaching reading comprehension is twofold: to develop reading skills and enhance students’ knowledge by including important themes and subthemes suggested by the designers of the curriculum. Numerous studies have revealed that the content in terms of themes within textbooks fails to adhere to the prescribed national standards established for such educational resources. This study employed qualitative content analysis as a research method to examine how the main themes recommended in the SNC English I-V 2020 have been incorporated in Textbook English 1 in Pakistan to enhance readers’ content knowledge. The comprehensive examination revealed that the main themes and sub-themes in the revised curriculum document for teaching reading comprehension in English as a second language to enhance students content knowledge have not been included in the textbook in a thorough and organized manner. It shows that out of the 21 main themes, a mere nine have been incorporated, with 22 sub-themes out of 63 in the textbook, with repetition of some themes instead of including new themes in each unit of Textbook English 1. This suggests that the absence of a coherent arrangement of themes in the particular textbook is likely to have an impact on the achievement of content in terms of knowledge and information in a systematic and chronological order, consequently impeding students’ cognitive knowledge about important topics prioritized in the curriculum document looking for their educational importance in recent years. The findings suggest that for the purpose of improving content knowledge through teaching reading comprehension of English and subsequently enhancing students' reading comprehension skills at the primary level in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan, it is recommended that the curriculum be methodically and comprehensively integrated into ESL textbooks by proficient textbook writers.

Key words: English as L2, reading comprehension, themes, sub-themes, content knowledge of teaching English, SNC English Grade I-V 2020, textbook  

Author Biography

hafiza, Department of Education, University of Malakand

PhD scholar