An investigation of teachers',pupils'and parents perceptions towards the use of Chinyanja as a medium of instruction at lower primary schools: A case of selected primary schools in Lusaka district,Zambia
Mbewe, Esau G.
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The study investigated perceptions of teachers, pupils and parents towards using Chinyanja as a medium of instruction in Lusaka district. The study further investigated the challenges that teachers and pupils were facing during implementation of Chinyanja as a medium of instruction. In addition the study investigated the measures to overcome the challenges being faced by teachers and pupils in the implementation of Chinyanja as a medium of instruction in Lusaka district. A multiple-case study was used which involved application of quantitative and qualitative methods. A sample of 123 participants was drawn from three selected schools and residential areas. The sample comprised of 63 pupils; 30 teachers; and 30 parents. Teachers and parents were selected purposively while pupils were selected using random sampling. The data was collected using semi-structured interviews and observation schedules on parents and teachers whilst semi structured interviews and focused group discussion were used to collect data from pupils. The qualitative data were analysed thematically. Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) was used to analyse the quantitative data in order to generate simple descriptive statistics. The findings of the study revealed that teachers perceived using Chinyanja as a language of instruction beneficial to the pupils in the early stages of literacy development because it enhanced increased teacher-pupil interaction in the learning process. This study also established that pupils do not support learning in Chinyanja because they are not proud of it and they are not proficient in Chinyanja used in class in Lusaka district. It was revealed that pupils preferred using English to Chinyanja as a medium of instruction. Parents regarded using Chinyanja as a medium of instruction as retrogressive and not beneficial to their children in acquiring future success in different life endeavours. The study identified that translational and mispronunciations challenges; lack of pedagogical knowledge by teachers to teach in Chinyanja; lack of proficiency in Chinyanja by teachers and pupils; over enrollment; language diversity; inadequate teaching and learning material; and lack of parental support for Chinyanja as language of instruction were the challenges being faced by teachers and pupils in implementing Chinyanja as a medium of instruction. Measures that could be taken to overcome the challenges that teachers and pupils were facing in implementation of Chinyanja as a medium of instruction in include: training teachers in local languages; providing adequate teaching and learning resources; teachers and parents to promote the usage of Chinyanja outside class, teacher to come up with continuous profession development in schools; cross-coding so that the difficult words in Chinyanja can be explained in English distributing more teaching and learning materials, re-translating Chinyanja books into Chinyanja that is spoken in Lusaka district and giving lower grades to teachers who knows Chinyanja well. The study recommended that in the future there is need to find out if there is a significant difference in acquisition of basic literacy skills between pupils who perceive a language of instruction positively and those who perceive it negatively and establish if there is a significant difference in perception between teachers and pupils in urban areas and teachers and pupils in rural areas.
The University of Zambia
Literacy and Reading (chinyanja)-study and Teaching
Language ang Languages--Study and Teaching
- Education