Student Teachers Reflections on Prior Experiences of Learning Geography: A Kenyan ExampleJournal: International Journal of Science and Research (IJSR) (Vol.7, No. 9)
Publication Date: 2018-09-05
Authors : Timothy Walela Maonga;
Page : 1579-1586
Keywords : geography; teacher education; prior experiences; attitudes;
Geography in primary schools in Kenya is taught as part of social studies. In Teacher education it is still part of social studies The importance of prior experiences in the development of student teachers has long been recognized and there is growing evidence of the nature of those experiences in areas such as geography. This paper reports the findings of research conducted with five cohorts of primary teacher trainees (student teachers) in seventeen primary teachers training colleges in Kenya. The study explored the prior experiences of student teachers as learners of geography and their perceptions of the subject. While there were differences between student teachers from different training colleges, attitudes towards geography were predominantly positive. Positive experiences focused on interesting and enthusiastic teachers and active and participatory learning approaches. Negative experiences of geography centred on the dominance of textbook-based teaching and the requirement to memorise content. The article argues that by providing positive and negative images of practice in the teaching of geography, students prior experiences can prompt insight into practices that promote deep learning, facilitate the integration of the personal and the professional dimensions of teaching and provide a starting point for the development of a vocabulary of critique and evaluation.
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