An investigation into the teaching practice component of pre-service primary teacher education in Zambia
Moyo, Jojo Angelo
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The purpose of this study is two-fold: 1. to identify and investigate specific characteristics of selected dimensions of teaching practice; and 2, on the basis of the findings, make possible recommendations as regards an appropriate pattern for primary teacher education teaching practice provision and organisation in Zambia. A review of the literature identified critical issues pertinent to Teaching Practice and established criteria for examining them. Other techniques of the study included participant observation at Kasama, Malcolm Moffat, and Kitwe Teachers' Training Colleges; a review of selected documents of teaching practice which were available at the University of Zambia and at the three selected Colleges; documents on teaching practice from the Ministry of Education and Culture; minutes of the teaching practice committees at the three Colleges. As further part of the study a questionnaire was administered to student teachers and scheduled interviews with Tutors were conducted. The findings revealed that the rationale for the inclusion of teaching practice was vaguely stated; there were no written down objectives of teaching practice; pre-practice instructions were not adequate; the period for pre-practice Instructions was too short; most of the demonstration lessons were not given by experts; organisation of teaching practice was inadeo'uate; evaluation of teaching practice was rather biased and unconstructive. R e co mm endat io ns To make teaching practice programmes more meaningful to both student teachers and tutors it is recommended that (1) the rationale for the inclusion of teaching practice be spelled out clearly; (2) teaching practice in Zambia should have clearly written down objectives; (3) pre-practice instructions should be comprehensive enough to cover the propositions stated in the criteria for teaching practice; the period for pre-practice instructions be extended to three weeks (the period to be divided into two phases - two weeks for expert demonstration lessons, peer - and micro-teaching; and one week for observation of class teachers' lessons); (4) transport and teaching aids be made available; (5) all student teachers should be adequately supervised; (6) evaluation of teaching practice should expose students' weaknesses and offer suggestions which might enable students to overcome those weaknesses. Team research on teaching practice as a component of teacher education which would incorporate all the pre-service primary teachers' colleges should be initiated; and an investigation into the methods used to train pre-service primary school teachers in Zambia is also recommended.
- Education