Primary Education

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    An assessment of preparation level, survival skills, and enterpreneural knowledge among retired teachers in Zambia.
    (2016) Mambwe, Robinson and Chisha Mwape
    This study investigated the preparation level, survival skills, and entrepreneurial knowledge among retired teachers in Zambia, as well as the success of their post-retirement business ventures. Descriptive survey design utilising both quantitative and qualitative methods were employed through use of questionnaires and semi-structured interviews. Convenient and purposive sampling techniques were utilised in sampling. The conclusion shows that most retired teachers lack survival and entrepreneurial skills to manage their business ventures. Lack of pre-retirement entrepreneurial training, lack of pre-retirement counselling, and poor planning for retirement life were found to be the major hindrances to retired teachers’ success in managing their business ventures. The article points to the need for major reforms in teacher training and in pensions scheme policies in Zambia to accommodate issues of financial literacy and entrepreneurial skills among teachers as a way of preparing teachers and other civil servants for life after formal employment.
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    Primary teachers’ conceptual understanding and implementation of components of a science lesson plan in three selected primary schools of Chibolya Zone, Lusaka district.
    (2024) Mambwe, Betty Bethar
    This study sought to examine the primary teachers’ conceptual understanding and implementation of the components of a Science Lesson Plan in three selected primary schools in Chibolya Zone in Lusaka District. The study explored the primary teachers’ conceptual understanding of the components of a science lesson plan, determined what primary teachers write on the components of a science lesson plan and found out how primary teachers implement of written science lesson plans. This study employed a pre-experimental survey design, which allows for a mixed approach. The study sample consisted of thirty (30) primary school teachers from the three selected primary schools in Chibolya Zone of Lusaka District. The three primary schools were selected randomly out of the five schools in Chibolya Zone. The thirty (30) teachers were purposively chosen. Data was collected using a questionnaire, document analysis and observation schedule. SPSS was used to generate descriptive statistics as tests of significance were not the goal of the study. Thematic analysis was used to categorise data qualitative data broadly as befits a pre-experimental survey design. The findings of the study revealed that the majority of primary teachers either possessed knowledge of the components but failed to apply them in practice, or lacked understanding of the components but still incorporated them into their lesson preparation. The findings showed that primary teachers had a relatively shallow conceptual understanding of the various components of a lesson plan as evidenced in the conceptual knowledge test. The findings of the study also revealed that some teachers’ lesson plans did not have some components that are fundamental in lesson delivery. Lastly, statistical evidence showed there were discrepancies between what was written in the lesson plans and what was being implemented in the lessons. Based on the findings, it is recommended that a policy could be suggested to introduce mandatory continuous professional development as a potential development for teachers to acquire skills for planning to teach. It is recommended that there could be clear teacher requirements in schools in terms of the appropriate design and format of the lesson plans by teachers. Lastly, in strengthening compliance to lesson plan implementation, more classroom inspections should be undertaken.
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    Teacher futures: global reaction to teacher shortages in rural locations.
    (2022) Mitchell, Robert; Patrick Hampton and Robinson Mambwe
    Upcoming changes in the teacher labor supply will have an impact on nations that provide government-based education for their youth. Faced with a significant global shortfall of educators, most countries have taken steps to incentivize teaching as a profession and ensure that qualified teachers are available to students in all locations -- particularly in rural environments. To understand these initiatives more thoroughly, a short-term policy analysis focused on incentives for teacher labor through a lens of governmental policy implementation has been completed. This resulted in a review of the efforts three nations (Australia, the United States and Zambia) have undertaken to ensure a viable and consistent teacher workforce in rural areas. While each nation has specific factors that contribute to current and projected shortages, each also provides unique solutions to assist in resolving this ongoing issue. Through the examination of multiple hiring factors and incentives used in each location, a better understanding of the specific challenges and strategies employed to secure a viable teaching workforce has been developed. Outcomes related to this policy analysis showed commonalities in the lack of developed strategies to prepare rural educators to address teacher shortages in more remote regions. In addition, while education leaders in each country continue to publicly call for additional support for rural teachers -- very little legislation or policy implementation has been enacted to bolster this subsection of public education in any of the specified nations. Additional discussion about the long-term concerns regarding rural teacher supply and student equity is also developed.
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    Exploring curriculum hurdles in implementing the social studies curriculum in Zambia: perspectives and experiences of civic education teachers.
    (2024) Mate, Matilda Musho and Robinson Mambwe
    The study explored teachers’ experiences in the teaching of Social Studies subject at Junior SecondarySchool in selected schools of Zambia. Employing the qualitative interpretivism research paradigm, theinvestigation utilized purposive sampling to select participants. Data collection instruments includedinterview guides for Head of Departments (HODs), Focus Group Discussions (FDGs), and observationchecklists for Social Studies Teachers who included Civic Education instructors. Thematic analysis wasemployed to analyse the collected data. The study revealed a multifaceted perspective on the integration ofCivic Education into the Social Studies curriculum. While the integration offered the advantage ofstreamlining the examination process by consolidating subjects, it also introduced challenges such ascontent overload, diminished academic performance, resource inadequacies, time constraints in completingthe syllabus, elevated pressures on untrained educators, and deficiencies in teaching competency, skills, andtechniques. Drawing from these findings, recommendations were made, including the need for the Ministryof General Education (MoGE) to increase the training of Social Studies teachers, provision of essentialteaching resources to schools, engagement in seminars, workshops, and continuous professionaldevelopment (CPDs), and enhancement of school infrastructure. Furthermore, the study proposes that thegovernment should provide support to educators involved in the creation of Social Studies teachingmaterials, encourage action research practices among teachers, foster collaboration among colleagues toshare best teaching practices, and allocate increased funding to schools. [accessed May 11 2024].
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    Exploring factors contributing to poor pupils’ performance in social studies at grade 9 in selected schools in Lusaka district, Zambia.
    (2024) Mutale, Prisca
    Social Studies is a beneficial subject to learners who take it, as it builds cultural awareness, develop critical thinking skills, gain citizenship skills and main more. However, learner performance in national examinations in Zambia has remained poor country-wide in general, and Lusaka District in particular as evidenced by successive Examination Council of Zambia (ECZ) reports of 2015 to 2019. The 2015 and 2016 Grade 9 Examination Results (Highlights), which inspired this study, reported a nation-wide failure percentage of 39.65 % while the 2017 reports by ECZ showed 30.03%. Thus, this study was conducted to establish the factors contributing to the poor performance of Grade 9 pupils in national social studies examinations in selected secondary schools in Lusaka district. To do this, the study sought to establish: the preparedness of teachers to teach the subject; the strategies teachers employ in teaching the subject; the attitudes of teachers and learners towards the subject and the factors leading to poor performance of learners. A qualitative approach, employing a case study strategy of inquiry, was adopted. The following data collection techniques were used: classroom observations, interviews and focus group discussions. The purposive sampling technique was used to select teachers and Grade 9 pupils a total of 55 respondents were selected distributed as; 40 Grade 9 pupils 10 from each school, 8 teachers of social studies and 4 Heads of social sciences. Data were analyzed qualitatively and identification of emerging themes. The study is based on the theory of constructivism which was espoused by Jean Piaget. The constructivism theory has relevance to this study, because the theory is particularly on Performance being an outcome of learning, and the manner in which leaners learn determines outcome or performance. Therefore, the academic performance in social studies observed from 2015- 2019 was the outcome of how the subject was being handled by teachers. The study established that teachers of social studies were mostly inadequately prepared to teach the subject, teachers using wrong teaching methods, teachers not being involved in curriculum development, negative attitude by both the teachers and the learners, teachers not understand the aims, purpose and goals of social studies, less time allocation on the timetable and learners not having access to educational tours. Majority of teachers lacked relevant subject background knowledge and were limited in terms of pedagogical practices. Additionally, the serious shortage of texts books in some schools, poor reading culture among learners, negative attitudes by some teachers and learners towards the subject were found to be some of the major factors affecting performance. The study recommends holding of periodic capacity building program, training of teachers of social studies, and use of interactive teaching strategies as possible remedial measures. Teachers need to be sensitized, motivated and supported on the importance of Social Studies for this will assist to develop positive attitudes in leaners towards the subject.