Cooperative Learning Method and Development of Pre-School Children’s Competences Acquisition in Mathematical Concepts in Kirinyaga County, Kenya

Kamau Bonface, J. C. Gatumu, E. Muriithi, R. Kahiga


The research from which this paper is derived explored the effect of cooperative learning method on development of pre-schoolers’ competences in mathematical concepts. 20 pre-school teachers on their regular teaching in their pre-schools were observed teaching their 639 Pre-primary Two learners. The purpose of this study was to establish the difference between the mean score index of pre-school learners taught by a teacher who facilitates learning using the Cooperative Learning Method (CLM) and those taught by a teacher who does not. Data was collected through the use of observation schedule and teacher questionnaire. Each of the twenty pre-school teachers was observed by the researcher while facilitating mathematical concepts’ competences during number work lessons. A documentary analysis guide was used to access the pre-school teachers’ schemes of work and lesson plans to establish their level of preparation in line with CLM. Descriptive and inferential statistics were used to analyse the collected data and guided by the themes arising from the objective of the study the key findings were arrived at. The various levels of the teachers’ facilitation of CLM were tied to the pre-school leaners’ performance in the mathematical concepts competences achievement test. The findings emerging showed that those learners who were taught using CLM achieved higher mean score indices than those who were not. The implication here is that the use of CLM improves pre-school learners’ levels of achievement, indicating that it is a more effective method of teaching. Teachers’ facilitation of CLM seemed to have a significant positive influence on the learners’ Mathematical Concepts Competences Acquisition. These features were; availability of groupings and teacher preparedness, level of provision of learning resources, level of coordination, level of interaction, time taken in CLM activities. This implies that CLM imparts the required mathematical concepts competences better than traditional instructional methods. The study recommends that the Ministry of Education should develop programmes and policies that provide regular in-service training, in which CLM training forms a key part of the agenda and to refresh the mathematical concepts competences instructional skills of pre-school teachers.

Keywords: Competences; Cooperative Learning Method; Mathematical Concepts

DOI: 10.7176/JEP/12-32-05

Publication date: November 30th 2021

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