SCHOOL CHARACTERISTICS AND ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE OF PRIMARY SCHOOL PUPILS IN MATHEMATICS

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Introduction

Primary education is an essential phase of education that lays the foundation for a child’s future academic success. Mathematics is an important subject that is taught in primary schools worldwide. However, the academic performance of primary school pupils in mathematics varies across different countries, schools, and individuals. This essay will examine the characteristics of schools that influence the academic performance of primary school pupils in mathematics.

School Characteristics

  1. Quality of Teaching:

The quality of teaching is an essential characteristic of schools that influence the academic performance of primary school pupils in mathematics. Teachers who are knowledgeable, skilled, and enthusiastic about mathematics are more likely to engage their pupils in learning and motivate them to achieve their best. Teachers who are passionate about mathematics also tend to have a positive attitude towards the subject, which they can impart to their pupils. Good teaching practices, such as providing clear explanations, using real-life examples, and encouraging pupils to ask questions, can also improve pupils’ academic performance in mathematics.

  1. Curriculum and Pedagogy:

The curriculum and pedagogy used in teaching mathematics can also influence the academic performance of primary school pupils. The curriculum should be well-designed and aligned with the pupils’ cognitive abilities, interests, and needs. The pedagogy used should also be appropriate for the pupils’ learning styles, such as visual, auditory, and kinesthetic. Active learning strategies, such as problem-based learning, inquiry-based learning, and collaborative learning, can also enhance pupils’ academic performance in mathematics.

  1. Learning Environment:

The learning environment of a school can also influence the academic performance of primary school pupils in mathematics. A conducive learning environment that is safe, comfortable, and well-equipped can help pupils to focus on learning and improve their academic performance. The school should also have adequate resources, such as textbooks, teaching aids, and technology, to support effective teaching and learning of mathematics.

  1. School Culture:

The school culture, including the values, beliefs, and attitudes of teachers, pupils, and parents, can also influence the academic performance of primary school pupils in mathematics. A positive school culture that promotes high expectations, mutual respect, and a growth mindset can motivate pupils to perform well in mathematics. Teachers who provide constructive feedback, recognize pupils’ efforts, and celebrate their achievements can also enhance pupils’ motivation to learn and perform well in mathematics.

  1. Parental Involvement:

Parental involvement is another characteristic of schools that can influence the academic performance of primary school pupils in mathematics. Parents who are involved in their children’s learning by providing support, encouragement, and resources can improve their academic performance. Parents can also reinforce mathematical concepts and skills at home, such as through games, puzzles, and real-life applications. Moreover, parents can communicate with teachers and participate in school activities to create a supportive learning environment for their children.

Academic Performance of Primary School Pupils in Mathematics

The academic performance of primary school pupils in mathematics can be measured by various indicators, such as test scores, grades, and achievement levels. However, these indicators may not capture the full range of pupils’ mathematical abilities, such as problem-solving skills, reasoning abilities, and creativity. Therefore, it is essential to use multiple assessment methods that reflect the diverse nature of mathematics and the pupils’ learning outcomes.

Research has shown that school characteristics, such as the quality of teaching, curriculum, pedagogy, learning environment, school culture, and parental involvement, are significant predictors of pupils’ academic performance in mathematics. Schools that have high-quality teaching, well-designed curriculum and pedagogy, conducive learning environment, positive school culture, and parental involvement tend to produce pupils with better academic performance in mathematics. Moreover, schools that provide opportunities for pupils to engage in problem-solving, inquiry, and collaborative learning tend to foster their mathematical thinking and creativity.