Contribution of Children's Involvement in Housework on Academic Competence in Early Childhood at City Primary School, Nairobi County
Early childhood education is now recognized as critical in laying the foundation for holistic development of young children during the formative years. Research in early childhood emphasizes the interplay between the home and the school in enhancing quality holistic experiences in children in the early years. However, the rise in industrialization and technological advancements in modem day society have led to a lot of changes in child rearing practices especially in the urban areas. These changes include: a greater number of mothers seeking employment, absentee fathers, employment of domestic servants in the homes, a more demanding education system and so on. These changes have had tremendous effects on childhood experiences that have all along been significant to the development of children including the participation of children in housework. Participation of children in housework is a traditional practice that has been imperative in the holistic development of school children including academic competences. However, current research does not show whether this practice is still being done, especially in the urban households where the effects of modernity are the greatest. This gap in knowledge is the basis for conducting this study. This is a descriptive survey, whose purpose is to find out whether or not school children in urban households are being involved in housework and how this relates to their academic performance in the school activity areas. Qualitative methods of data collection and analysis will be used during the study. Purposive sampling will be used to select the specific settings and respondents relevant to the study. It will be done among six to eight year old children, parents and teachers at City Primary School, Nairobi County. The sampling frame will be 77 respondents which is 30.08% of the population. Naturalistic observations of the children at home and at school and in-depth interviews and questionnaires will be the primary sources of data. In addition, document analysis, field notes, journals and tape recording will provide additional secondary data. A pilot study will be done among children and patents at Ngara Road primary school, to test the validity and reliability of the instruments. Qualitative analysis procedures will be used to analyze the data collected and the generated theory will be compared to existing theory. This knowledge is likely to inform parents, teachers and policy makers on the role of housework in developing academic competence in early childhood.