Environmental education in Namibia : a case study of the biology teachers

Haindongo, Nyeuvo-Saima (2013-03)

Thesis (MEd)--Stellenbosch University, 2013.

Bibliography

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The focus of this study is on Biology teachers in selected Namibian schools. The researcher seeks to understand how Biology teachers implement Environmental Education (EE) as part of the Biology curriculum as is mandated in the curriculum policy. Literature indicates that the EE curriculum and the science curriculum are underpinned by different philosophical and pedagogical perspectives. This prompts the research questions, and the subsequent research reported on in this thesis. During a case study guided by a qualitative interpretive paradigm, Biology teachers and Biology advisory teachers are interviewed about their experiences and actions and invited to make suggestions. In addition curriculum document analysis and observation are used. The data point to the aspects that can facilitate the implementation of EE in the curriculum, However the implementation of EE is associated with many obstacles and challenges. Teachers struggle to implement EE because of an inadequate understanding of EE and its underlying philosophy. Further enhancement of EE will also require the reduction of tensions between policy and practice, logistic barriers, and the gap between EE and science, while increasing the involvement of teachers in curriculum development, collegiality among teachers and principals, teachers and advisory teachers’ knowledge of EE, teachers and advisory teachers’ curriculum understanding and professional support. Teachers cannot achieve the objectives of EE unaided; therefore the establishment of EE co-coordinators in schools is suggested, since schools have failed to implement EE without such support. In addition, it is suggested that activity systems be studied in totality and that boundaries be crossed to enrich the outcome of EE. . Subject advisors are mandated by the government to support teachers experiencing problems, and it is suggested that ideas linked to the activity systems and activity theory be investigated and implemented to solve the problems. This should improve the implementation of EE as part of science teaching in the schools where the study was conducted and in other schools.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Die fokus van hierdie studie was op biologie-onderwysers in geselekteerde Namibiese skole. Die navorser probeer om te verstaan hoe biologie-onderwysers Environmental Education (EE) implementeer as deel van die biologie van die kurrikulum wat in die kurrikulum beleid mandaat. Literatuur dui daarop dat die EE kurrikulum en die wetenskap kurrikulum word ondersteun deur "anders" filosofiese en pedagogiese perspektiewe wat die navorsing vrae gevra, en die daaropvolgende projek berig in hierdie tesis. Het egter Biologie-onderwysers se pre-diens onderwys sluit nie EE. Tydens 'n gevallestudie gelei deur 'n kwalitatiewe interpretatiewe paradigma, is biologie-onderwysers en biologie raadgewende onderwysers ondervra oor hul ervarings, aksies en voorstelle. Kurrikulum dokumente is ontleed en waarnemings van onderwysers in klaskamers in Benewens onderhoude en dokument-analise is gebruik. Data dui daarop dat die implementering word omring deur baie struikelblokke en uitdagings. EE is beperk tot opvoeding oor die omgewing en word gelei deur wetenskapsfilosofie. Dit lyk asof daar 'n gebrek aan begrip van EE en sy onderliggende filosofie deur onderwysers. Die meeste onderwysers noem baie struikelblokke as struikelblokke tot die implementering en dit sluit in logistieke hindernisse, en die gaping tussen EE en wetenskap, 'n gebrek van die betrokkenheid van onderwysers in kurrikulumontwikkeling, 'n gebrek van kollegialiteit onder onderwysers en skoolhoofde, gebrek aan onderwysers en raadgewende onderwysers se kurrikulum begrip en professionele ondersteuning. Terwyl, dokument-analise het gewys op die spanning tussen beleid en praktyk. Verdere data wys na die aspekte wat kan ondersteun as die inlywing van EE in die kurrikulum EE implementering, Biologie word gesien as 'n goeie voertuig vir EE, onderwysers benaderings is kennis van leerder, onderwysers se houding teenoor die implementering is positief. Advisory onderwysers kennis van hul algemene verantwoordelikhede, maar hulle lyk nie te verstaan hoe dit is van toepassing in EE weens gebrek aan EE kennis. Onderwysers kan nie die doel bereik sonder hulp, dus die vestiging van EE mede-koördineerders in skole word voorgestel, aangesien skole het misluk EE te implementeer sonder ondersteuning. Daarbenewens word dit voorgestel dat die aktiwiteit stelsels in totaliteit bestudeer word en dat die grense oorgesteek om die uitkoms te verryk. In hierdie verband, vakadviseurs mandaat deur die regering om onderwysers te ondersteun wat hindernisse ervaar, en daar word voorgestel dat die idees gekoppel aan die aktiwiteit en aktiwiteit-teorie ondersoek word en geïmplementeer word om die hindernisse aan te pak. Dit moet EE implementering te verbeter as deel van die wetenskap-onderrig in die skole waar die studie gedoen is.

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