A Survey of resources for teaching and learning environmental education in primary teachers colleges in Kenya.
Wambua, Lois Mutang'a
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Environmental Education (EE) has been a subject of great importance the world over, in the last two decades. This has been necessitated by the fact that environmental problems created by man, especially during this technological era, are seriously threatening the very survival of man himself. It was the awareness of the seriousness of environmental degradation rampt throughout the world that led to the formation, in 1972, of the United Nations Environment programme (UNEP). Soon after the launching of UNEP, the UNEP Governing Council realized through its deliberations that education on the environmental problems. This realization culminated into the formation of the International Environmental Education Programme (IEEP) in 1975, by UNESCO in collaboration with UNEP. It is the desire of the IEEP that all the nations of the world incorporate EE in their education systems, using either the inter-disciplinary or the multi-disciplinary approaches. Kenya decided to incorporate EE in her education curriculum during the implementation of her adopted 8-4-4 systems of education. This study was an exploratory was an exploratory survey whose purpose was to find out whether EE has been properly implemented in Primary Teachers Colleges in Kenya or not. In particular, the researcher wanted to find out: a) Whether teaching/learning resources for EE are available in the Primary Teachers Colleges, b) Where such resources were obtained from, c) Whether the tutors of EE had been academically and professionally prepared to teach the subject, d) Whether students were exposed to the environmental problems that face Kenya in particular, through the use of field trips or studies, e) How the resources were stored and finally, f) Whether the tutors of EE were afforded a forum for sharing ideas on production and use of EE materials. Design: Two instruments were employed to gather the data. These were: a questionnaire and a check-list appearing as appendixes A and B respectively. A total of 32 respondents were sampled from among the GHC, Science, Agriculture and Home Science tutors from the 4 Primary Teachers Colleges used for the study, namely: Highridge, Thogoto, Machakos and Kilimambogo. After the questionnaire and the check-lists were completed, the researcher analysed the data in Chapter Four of this project. The data analysis revealed that there are no adequate resources for teaching EE in the 4 Colleges from which the sample was drawn; that most of the tutors were nt even aware of what EE was all about. Consequently, field studies were not being effectively used and hence it could be concluded that EE has not properly taken off in Primary Teachers Colleged in Kenya, since this study can be generalised to the other thirteen Teachers Colleges which were not covered.
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