Determinants of Standard One Pupils’ Readiness to Learn Mathematics in Primary Schools in Kasarani Sub-County, Kenya
Magoma, Phyllis M
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Research has shown that when children enter school ready to learn, they perform better. Readiness for school would help to reduce repetition and school dropout rates in primary schools. The purpose of this study was to establish pupils’ readiness to learn mathematics at the start of primary school. The study was guided by Ecological Theory by Urie Bronfenbrenner. The theory was selected for this study because it is suitable in understanding school readiness processes and contextual elements related to preparing children for school. Correlation research design was used in the study. The dependent variable was pupils’ readiness to learn mathematics. The independent variables were: Pupils’ school entrance age; gender of pupils; type of pre-primary school pupils attended, and parents’ level of education. The target population was standard one pupils enrolled in primary schools in Kasarani sub-county. Purposive sampling was used to select Kasarani sub-county and standard one pupils. Stratified random sampling was used to select 15% (12) primary schools to be involved in the study. The sample of the study consisted of 15% (123) class one pupils, 248 parents, and 12 class one teachers. Pupils’ readiness to learn mathematics check-list and questionnaire for teachers and parents were used to collect data. The researcher pre-tested the instruments in two primary schools, one public and the other private which were excluded in the final study. Content validity (item analysis) was used to test the validity of the instruments, while Guttman split-half test was used to test the reliability of the instruments which was found to be 0.85. Descriptive statistics involving frequencies, percentages and means were calculated. The inferential statistics used were Chi-square and t-test. Results from data analysis were presented using tables and were organized according to objectives and hypotheses of the study. The results showed that more than 25% of the pupils were not ready to learn mathematics and girls were more ready to learn mathematics than boys. However, the difference in pupils’ readiness to learn mathematics between boys and girls was not significant at p<0.05 level of significance. On the other hand, the relationship between pupils’ family economic class; pupils’ school entrance age; parents’ level of education; type of pre-primary school attended and pupils’ readiness to learn mathematics was significant at 0.05 level. It was recommended that school management should fully comply with education policies by not admitting pupils who are underage. Pre-primary school teachers specifically those in public primary schools should regularly assess children’s readiness to learn mathematics so as to enable them to identify pupils with difficulties in mathematics.