Enhancing learners’ hands-on experiences in the acquisition of integrated production skills at Shimoni Core primary teachers’ college, Wakiso district in Uganda
Okillan Asianut, Grace
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This study was carried out at Shimoni Core Primary Teachers College (CPTC) located in Wakiso District in Uganda; and sought to enhance learners’ vocational experiences in the acquisition of Integrated Production Skills (IPS) at the college, particularly Home Economics (HE) component within the IPS discipline. Three objectives guided the study: identify intervention strategies for increasing students’ hands-on experiences in the teaching and learning of Home Economics component of IPS; implement the intervention strategies for increasing students’ hands-on experiences in Home Economics component of IPS; and evaluate the effects of the implemented strategies on increasing students’ hands-on experiences learning the Home Economics component of IPS. Participants comprised of 12 IPS students, 1 IPS tutor, 4 college administrators. This study was based on the learning to learn theory and grounded on the idea that effective learning is based on collective effort of learners as groups and individuals, aiming at accomplishing tasks that translate into various competences. A participatory action research design, which employed a qualitative research methodology as an approach for collecting and analysing data, was used. Data was collected using; interviews, observation, document analysis and the future workshop. The strategies were identified and implemented by the participants in this study as measures for enhancing practical learning in IPS by student teachers in Shimoni CPTC were: Practical learning within the classroom, creation of extra-time for hands-on experiences, Tutors giving adequate attention and time to students during the extra time hands-on learning activities, forming an IPS club at the college and selling of IPS products made by learners during the HE lessons. It is evident therefore that a combined intervention of theoretical teaching, practical learning and allowing learners to experience revenue from sale of their output has a formidable effect in enhancing learning of practical skills among students.