Collaboration: A collective bargain for effective mathematics classroom practice in Nigerian secondary schools

Iliya Joseph Bature, Bill Atweh

Abstract


The world today had identified the importance of collaboration in finding solution to individual, societal and global problems. Also associations and clubs are being forms annually in order to fight common problems. However mathematics classrooms especially in Nigeria are still concentrating on teacher centered learning where mathematics teachers claimed the monopoly of knowledge and their students’ mere recipients of such knowledge. This paper sought to look at collaboration as an effective tool for mathematics classroom practice. Four inservice mathematics teachers from the Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University, Bauchi participated in a collaborative action research project as part of their final year undergraduate research work. They taught mathematics in one secondary school for a period of nine weeks. Six students willingly submitted themselves to three focus group discussions on the effectiveness of the new mathematics classroom setting created by the mathematics teachers. The mathematics teachers also held three reflection meetings after each of the three cycles to review the progress of their project. This research reports on the collaborative aspect of the whole research specifically on the perception of the students. The result reveals a positive influence in students’ participation in the mathematics classroom practice, as they were able to collaborate and shared ideas with one another during problems solving. The findings of the study also reveal that the domineering attitude of most mathematics teachers gave way for collaborative mathematics classroom practice with students leading the class and hence were in charge of their learning.

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