Influence of strengthening mathematics and science education on pupils science performance in public primary schools in Samia sub-county, Kenya
The purpose of the study was to investigate the influence of strengthening mathematics and science education on pupils‟ science performance in public primary schools in Samia Sub County, Kenya. The in-service training in Strengthening Mathematics and Science Education (SMASE) has had little improvement in the performance of science. The objectives of the study were to establish the influence of teachers‟ use of improvised teaching and learning resources, teachers‟ attitude, teachers‟ lesson planning and use of learner centred approaches. The study was based on constructivist theory which says learning is an active process. The study adopted descriptive survey research design. The study targeted 63 public primary schools, 63standard eight science teachers and 1901 standard eight pupils. Study sample consisted of 18 head teachers, 18 standard eight science teachers and 190 standard eight pupils. Simple random sampling was used to select public primary schools and purposive sampling was employed on standard eight science teachers and pupils. Data were collected using interview guides for head teachers and questionnaires for science teachers and pupils. Piloting was conducted in two schools using two head teachers, two standard eight science teachers and 20 standard eight pupils to check the validity of the instruments. The obtained data were computed for reliability using Pearson‟s Product Moment Correlation and correlation coefficient was 0.82 for teachers and 0.94 for pupils. Data were presented in form of tables and figures. The study findings revealed that 50 percent of the teachers studied improvise teaching and learning resources. Findings on teachers‟ attitude revealed that 77.8 percent of teachers find ASEI/PDSI lesson plan difficult to prepare. On teachers‟ lesson planning, the study found out that majority of teachers considered learners background before lesson planning. 83.3 percent of teachers do not use learnercentred approaches. From the study findings, the researcher concluded that ASEI/PDSI approach has not been fully implemented by science teachers as expected after the SMASE in-service training. From the study findings, the researcher recommended that Ministry of Education in conjunction with Centre for Mathematics Science and Technology in Africa and Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development provide prepared ASEI/PDSI lesson plans for teachers. To enhance learner centred approaches, monitoring and evaluation by SMASE coordinators at sub county level in liaison with quality assurance should intensify regular inspection. The researcher suggested further study on the influence of strengthening mathematics and science education on pupils‟ mathematics performance in public primary schools.