Influence of teaching methods on pupils performance in mathematics in public primary schools in Kasarani Division, Nairobi County, Kenya
Kunga, Elizabeth A
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Public primary schools in Kasarani when compared to others public primary schools in Nairobi have been found to perform the worst in mathematics scoring below the average mean score of 50. The purpose of this study was to determine the influence of teaching methods on pupils' performance in public primary schools in Kasarani Division, Nairobi County. The study sought to determine how pupil centered methods and teacher centered methods of teaching influenced pupils' performance in mathematics. It also explored ways in which the pupil centered and teacher centered teaching meth-ods could be integrated to improve pupils' performance in mathematics. The study targeted public primary schools in Kasarani and employed a descriptive survey design. Simple random sampling was used to select fifty (50) teachers and one hundred (100) student respondents from various selected public primary schools in Kasarani Division, Nairobi County. Five head teachers were also selected for the study. The questionnaires were the major source of primary data for the research while document analysis provided the bulk of the secondary data for this study. The data was analyzed using Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) and interpreted using descriptive statistics and presented as percentages, frequencies, pie charts and bar charts. The findings of the study show that the teachers teaching methods have an influence on the pupils' performance in mathematics. The te,achers approach to teaching mathematics impacts on the way pupils apply, analyse, and synthesize to create knowledge and solve problems. While teachers centered approach was found to inhibit pupils' participation in class by reducing them to mere spectators, pupil-centered teaching methods shifted the focus from the teachers to the pupils and were found to have a higher positive influence on pupils learning as compared to the teachers centered approach. The use of problem solving, cooperative learning, guided discovery and investigative teaching had a positive impact on students' performance in mathematics. The study recommends that the teacher centered method of teaching and the pupil centered approach be integrated together to help improve pupils performance in mathematics. The researcher further calls on the government to assist public primary schools in setting up of multimedia centers to enhance interactive learning for pupils which will go a long way in enhancing pupils performance in mathematics.