Factors influencing use of sign language in teaching and learning in public primary schools in Kiambu County, Kenya
Pakata, Bibianah Florence
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Sign Language plays a critical role towards realization of education. The purpose of this study was to investigate factors influencing use of Sign Language in teaching and learning in public primary schools in Kiambu County, Kenya. The study was based on Naomi Chomsky theory of Language acquisition of 1977. This theory emphasis, everyone has an inborn faculty for first language acquisition, at birth children already have brains whose neural circuits have linguistics information, if nurtured well first language acquisition and use is realized within the shortest time expected. This theory also emphasizes that children think in their first language. This theory advocates for use of Sign Language for learners who are deaf. Neuman, 2009 narrates that a sample size depends on what one wants to investigate, the purpose of the inquiry, what is at stake, what is useful and what can be done within available time and resources. The researcher used 3 reliable instruments; questionnaires, observation checklist and interview schedule. The researcher employed qualitative Case Study design which involved in depth investigation of the problem at hand. The Statistical package for social sciences (SPSS) was used to analyze the data and the data which was presented using frequency tables, pie and bar graphs. Descriptive Statistics that included frequency tables and thematic analysis were used. The study was conducted using the descriptive survey design which describes respondents‟ characteristics such as opinions, attitudes, believes based on educational or social issues. The study used descriptive survey design. The target was 1 head teacher, 25 teachers and 265 learners. The questionnaires were the main tools used to collect data from the head teacher, teachers and learners. The researcher purposively sampled 1 head teacher, 10 teachers and 104 learners. The researcher established that the teacher factor, the school environment, the curriculum, teaching / learning resources, influenced the use of Sign Language in teaching and learning in public primary schools. Based on the findings, the researcher recommended that: there should be provision of refresher courses in Sign Language, the government through the Ministry of Education to facilitate a good school environment that enhances use of Sign Language. The researcher suggested that a similar study should be replicated in the entire County to establish factors influencing use of Sign Language in public primary schools.