Pre-primary SchoolTeachers' Use of Culturally Relevant Instructional Materials in Teaching in Kieni West District, Nyeri County, Kenya
Waigera, Joseph Karaigua
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Pre-primary school forms the beginning of formal education in Kenya. Research indicates that children who obtain quality pre-primary education have a headstart in life. It is also evident that early exposure and use of culturally relevant instructional materials prepare children to be well adjusted in life. Children are also equipped with problem solving skills that are important for daily living. A culturally relevant pedagogy provides a way for learners to maintain their cultural identity while succeeding academically. Despite many studies carried out on the use of instructional materials in primary schools, secondary schools and teacher training colleges. not much is known on what happens in pre-primary schools. The purpose of this study was to establish pre-primary school teachers' use of culturally relevant instructional materials in teaching. The study sought to determine the relationship between the use of culturally relevant instructional materials by pre-primary school teachers and the factors which are believed to influence their use. Theory of culturally relevant pedagogy by Gloria Ladson-Billings (1994) guided this study. An exploratory descriptive survey design was employed while stratified random sampling technique was used, to select a proportionate number of private and public pre-primary school teachers. A total sample of 98 pre-primary school teachers' was selected for the study drawn from 121 pre-primary schools in the District. Questionnaires and observation schedules were used to collect data. The data collected was coded and analyzed using the Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS). Qualitative and quantitative methods were used to analyze the data. Descriptive statistics computed included frequencies, standard deviation, means and percentages. The inferential statistics used to test null hypotheses were t-test and Pearson Product Moment Correlation Coefficient at alpha value 0.05 (p<0.05). Results from data analysis revealed that there is no significant difference in use of culturally relevant instructional materials between public and private pre-primary schools. Most of the instructional materials used in teaching were culturally relevant but inadequate. The relationship between availability of culturally relevant instructional materials, attitudes towards culturally relevant instructional materials and. pre-primary school teachers' use of culturally relevant instructional materials was' significant. However, the relationship between use of culturally relevant instructional materials, teaching experience, and professional qualifications were not significant. To improve the use of culturally relevant instructional materials in pre-primary schools, capacity building and sensitization seminars for pre-primary school teachers and other stakeholders on development and use of culturally relevant materials in teaching should be organized by D1CECE officers at the District level.