Effects Of Literature Circle And Drama In Education Secondary School Attitude To Prose Literature
This study investigated the effects of literature circle and drama in education secondary school attitude to prose literature. Literature indicates that students‘ poor command of English language, unwillingness to engage in reading tasks and lack of engagement with recommended texts cause poor performance. Previous studies have been carried out on the use of basic literature circles, literature circles with roles and scaffolding strategies to enhance students‘ reading and writing achievement. However, the use of these strategies in studies conducted in Nigeria especially in the area of prose literature in English is not common. This study therefore investigated effects of these student-centred and socio-cultural strategies on senior secondary school students‘ achievement and attitude to prose literature in English. It also determined moderating effects of verbal ability and gender on the dependent measures. The study adopted the pretest-posttest, control group quasi-experimental design using a 4x3x2 factorial matrix. Three hundred and eighteen Senior Secondary II students in intact classes from eight senior secondary schools purposively selected from four local government areas of Ogun State were randomly assigned to treatment (basic literature circles, literature circles with roles and scaffolding) and control groups. Three response research instruments: Verbal Ability (r =0.82), Prose Literature in English Attitude Questionnaire (r =0.77), Achievement Test in Prose Literature (r =0.88) and four stimulus instruments: Basic Literature Circles Instructional Guide, Literature Circles with roles instructional Guide, Scaffolding Instructional Guide and Conventional Method Instructional Guide were used for data collection. Seven hypotheses were tested in the study at P< 0.05). The students exposed to Scaffolding had the highest mean achievement score ( x = 16.84) followed by Basic Literature Circles ( x = 16.30) then Literature Circles with Roles ( x = 15.25) and the Conventional Method ( x = 9.93) in that order. However, treatment had no significant main effect on studentsattitude to Prose Literature in English (F (3,293) = 33.74; P > 05). In addition, verbal ability and gender had no significant effect on students‘ achievement and attitude to prose literature in English. There were also no significant interaction effect of treatment and verbal ability; treatment and gender on students‘ achievement and attitude to the subject. In the same vein, there was no significant three way interaction effect of treatment, verbal ability and gender on students‘ achievement and attitude to prose literature in English. Student-centred and socio-cultural strategies (literature circles and scaffolding strategies) enhanced students‘ active engagement with texts and were more effective in promoting students‘ achievement in prose literature in English. It is, therefore, recommended that teachers of literature especially prose should be encouraged to use these strategies in their lessons.
Table of Content
- Title Page
- Table of Content
- List of Tables
- 1.1 Background of the Study
- 1.2 Statement of the Problem
- 1.3 Objective of the Study
- 1.4 Research Questions
- 1.5 Research Hypothesis
- 1.6 Significance of the Study
- 1.7 Scope of the Study
- 1.8 Limitation of the Study
- 1.9 Definition of Terms
- 1.10 Organisations of the Study
Review of Literature
- 2.1 Conceptual Framework
- 2.2 Theoretical Framework
- 2.3 Empirical Review
- 3.1 Research Design
- 3.2 Population of the Study
- 3.3 Sample Size Determination
- 3.4 Sample Size Selection Technique and Procedure
- 3.5 Research Instrument and Administration
- 3.6 Method of Data Collection
- 3.7 Method of Data Analysis
- 3.8 Validity of the Study
- 3.9 Reliability of the Study
- 3.10 Ethical Consideration
Data Presentation and Analysis
- 4.1 Data Presentation
- 4.2 Analysis of Data
- 4.3 Answering Research Questions
- 4.4 Test of Hypotheses
- 4.5 Discussion of Findings
Summary, Conclusion and Recommendation
- 5.1 Summary
- 5.2 Conclusion
- 5.3 Recommendation
1.1 Background of the Study
Language is an important means of communication and cultural transmission. The potentials of language are utilized in discourse by humans to satisfy their quest for expression, understanding and control of the world. Language is first and foremost oral and secondarily, wrriten. As a vehile for communicating thoughts, feelings, ideas, knowledge, information and imaginative products of the writer, language becomes a potent tool in the hands of the literary artist who is endowed with the noble responsibility for transmitting the cultural experiences of his/her people through generations. Therefore literature is communicated through language making language and literature two sides of the same coin. However, literature is a more elevated form of language used in a more special and beautiful manner to express views, feelings, ideas, beliefs and emotions (Lawal, 2000). Based on the above, literature may be described as an imaginative creation of human experience, expressed orally or in writing. Reeves (2004) asserts that literature launches readers into a voyage of discovery, exploring ways of seeing and being as well as clarifying their own worlds.
Literature is the window through which readers see the world; their knowledge of that world provides the basis by which they assess the worth of their own lives and come to a better understanding of themselves and their society. Literature is a useful tool in the socialization and education of the individual because a literary text is a compendium of information and knowledge about humans and their social experiences. Proficiency in reading literature text is as important as being proficient in the use of language. Language and literature are important aspects of culture. They are also means of communication, though their foci differ in some ways. While literature is concerned with the literary aspect of communication, language is concerned with all forms of person to person relationships and interactions in the conduct of human affairs (Ayebola, 2006). By this submission, the study of literature does not only bring learners into contact with functional varieties of English which they need in actual communicative situations, it demands that learners apply their knowledge of language to read, understand and appreciate literature (Wilmott, 1979; Ogunsiji, 2003.
Proficiency in the language of the text is required for learners to enter into the imaginative world of the author, understand that world and react to it. The author‘s creative manipulation of language in literature creates a sense of beauty, wonder and pleasure in the reader. Besides exposing students to the uniqueness of language, literature is studied for the vicarious experiences it offers readers. Literature enriches and develops the mind. It also widens readers‘ horizon as they are exposed to the various human conditions presented in the text. In her explication, Klages (2006) asserts that literature, as part of humanism, ‗is supposed to foster the intangible, immeasurable values of life, the benefits and forms of art without which life would be lifeless equations and bare facts‘. This submission implies that studying literature exposes students to the important ideals and acceptable ways of behavior within the society that make life and living meaningful. In the same vein, Applebee, Bermundez, Blau, Capla, Dorn, Elbow, Hynds, Langer and Marshal (1997) assert that literature gives one insight into different worlds and different cultures, into oneself and helps one to understand oneself and the world in which one lives better and makes one a better person. It is for these profound experiences which literature inculcates in the learner that literature is studied in schools.
Some literature researchers Aluko (1990); Ogunsiji (2003); Reeves (2004) Anyaniyi (2009) found that the study of literature enhances not only the development of language skills; it gives readers insight into themselves and their social experiences. This is why the study of literature is of utmost importance at both the junior and senior secondary schools. Literature is taught as an elective subject in the senior secondary school while at the junior level, it is designed as an integral part of the English language curriculum. The objective is to promote integrated English studies stated in the National Policy on Education (NPE) issued in 1977 and revised in 2004. The idea of integrating literature within the English syllabus at this level is based on the view that English performs both ‗service and educative functions‘ therefore, it is needed everywhere (Adeyanju 1979).
The literature studied and examined at the senior secondary school level comprises the three genres (prose, poetry and drama). Success in each of these genres contributes to the overall success of students in the examination. However, there are certain attributes or characteristics of the prose text that make it distinct from the others. According to Williams (1990), prose sharpens students‘ awareness of life as they share in the imaginative experience of the author. Secondly, it is believed that prose is simple and easier to read because its linguistic structure is closer to the language of everyday life. Prose makes students aware of the possibilities of language use (Lawal 2000) and provides them a greater opportunity for reading due to its simplicity of language. One implication of this is that some teachers of literature in Nigeria assume that students can read and understand prose even when they are not taught. Based on this assumption, some literature teachers in Nigeria do not employ effective teaching methods (Ogunaike 2002). Such teachers focus on story narration, vocal reading and treatment of past examination questions. Meanwhile, effective instructional procedure is aimed at helping the Nigerian child who has chosen to study literature to achieve desired expertise and independence in the reading of a text; build up a lifelong love for reading as well as achieve improved cognitive and affective skills in literature and reading.
Second language learners lack the basic language skill needed to appreciate literature (Chief Examiners‘ Reports 2004, 2005, 2007). Thus, they are predisposed to becoming resistant readers; lacking both literary and linguistic competence to read and understand prose literature texts or texts in other genres. Research has shown that when students encounter texts written in a language that is not familiar to them, they tend to struggle with the linguistic problems associated with such texts and Nigerian students are not an exception (Elliot 1990; Lawal 2000). Chamot and O‘Malley (1994) also assert that the most critical task facing second language learners is learning to read a text written in a language in which they have limited proficiency. The researchers observe that the second language learners whether learning to read for the first time or trying to transfer reading skills already learnt in the native language encounter an inordinate amount ofunfamiliar language even in beginning texts. Lawal (2000) posits that part of the problems that students encounter in reading and understanding written literature in Nigeria are twofold, first is the complex and subtle nature of the English language itself; second is that the English language learners are exposed to is ‗limited in scope and function to specific purposes, which are educational. Emphasis is on linguistic competence to the detriment of literary competence. Therefore, they lack exposure to the creative use of language needed to understand and interpret literature texts in English. These problems can frustrate the actualization of the objectives of teaching literature in schools.
In spite of the objectives and the profound values of literature, its teaching and learning in secondary schools have continued to undergo setbacks, resulting in the recurrent poor performance of students in the subject as indicated in the 2004, 2005 and 2007 May/June SSCE Chief Examiners‘ Reports. Most often, these reports reveal that students display absolute lack of knowledge of the texts, understanding of the questions asked and good mastery of the English language needed to respond to the texts. There is also the indication that students do not read the set texts. For instance, the SSCE Chief Examiners‘ Report for May/June 2004 noted that ‗candidates could not adequately interpret the questions due to lack of expected in-depth knowledge of the texts. As a result, when they had points to deliver, they were mostly vague and shallow‘ (Pg. 42).
Sometimes teaching prose literature, especially at the senior secondary level, can be a challenging task, not only because teachers are dealing with students whose linguistic background differ from the language of the text, but also because as Lawal (2000) observes, learners at this level have a poor background in reading. Some of them have not been exposed to extensive reading at the junior level and this constitutes a barrier to their reading and understanding of the novel at the senior level. These are in addition to other individual differences which students bring to the learning context. Second language learners of literature need assistance through student-centred and sociocultural instructional strategies to actively engage with the texts they are reading, appreciate and interpret the text, understand the plot, identify with the characters, figure out the theme, appreciate the author‘s style, the social-cultural background of the text and author‘s point of view (Elliot 1990). They also need assistance to make personal connections with the text and understand how the various elements of the prose text and students‘ personal characteristics affect the overall comprehension of the text.
Besides problems associated with the nature of the literary text, methods and instructional strategies have also been identified as being responsible for the recurrent failure of students in literature examination (Uwaifo 1979; Bisong 1996; Okedara 1992; Ogunaike 2002; Anyaniyi 2009). The prevalent conventional strategies used in teaching literature in Nigerian classrooms today emanate from the transmission of knowledge approach to teaching. Beach, Appleman, Hynds and Wilhelm (2006) assert that transmission of knowledge as an approach to teaching literature focuses on how best to impart knowledge to students assumed to be empty vessels, dutifully waiting to be filled up with the knowledge the teacher provides through lectures or presentations.
Consequently, the teacher is believed to be the custodian of knowledge whose duty it is to impart this knowledge to students who do not question his/her authority. In the context of African culture, this situation becomes more significant because it isconsidered impertinent for children to question the authority of their elders. Naturally, students accept whatever information the teacher passes across, leaving the former no option than to assume a dependent role in the prose literature discussion while all classroom activities revolve round the teacher as the centre of instruction. The traditional literature classroom is characterized by much of teacher-centered instructional approaches and strategies than student-centred ones. Elliot (1990), Langer (1995), Beach, Appleman, Hynds and Wilhelm (2006), Bagherkazemi and Alemi, (2010) note that traditional text-based approaches such as linguistic analysis, stylistics, structuralism, critical literary approaches and transmission of knowledge approaches have been criticized for their inability to promote learners‘ active engagement with the texts, independent reading and personal creation of meaning. In these approaches, focus is on knowledge of facts, right answers and pre-determined interpretation, hence meaning of text is imposed on learners.
Besides, these approaches emphasize knowledge of formal grammar and the development of linguistic and communicative skills (Elliot, 1990; Stockwell, 2007; Bagherkazemi and Alemi, 2010). For instance, Van (2009), cited in Bagherkazemi and Alemi (2010), notes that the stylistic approach focuses on the relationship between learner‘s linguistic knowledge and literary experience; structuralism emphasizes knowledge of the linguistic code without any regard for meaning and reader‘s response; the critical literary approach centres on the relationship between language use and social power while the new criticism as a traditional approach to literature teaching conceives literature as a self-contained whole, independent of the author‘s intention, the reader‘s response and the social, political and historical background of the text. On the other hand, Van (2009) argues in favour of the reader response and language-based approaches. According Van, the reader response predicates on the transactional relationship between the reader and the text while the language-based approach provides opportunity for students to read literature and at the same time acquire the four language skills. It facilitates students‘ responses and experiences with literature through a variety of classroom activities such as cloze procedures, brain storming, summarizing, jigsaw reading which are believed to enhance collaboration, independence, interaction, peerteaching and motivation.
In line with current criticism against the use of traditional literature teaching approaches that promote linguistic and communicative language skills, Tseng (2010) observes that using literature in English as a foreign language (EFL) classroom is mainly for the purpose of linguistic development hence, Van‘s (2009) language-based approach may not completely solve the problem of students‘ lack of active engagement with the literary text. The language –based approach would be appropriate when the emphasis of the literature instruction is on language development.
Teaching literature goes beyond analysis of the linguistic elements of the text or a simple narration of the events in the story for the purpose of examination instead, literature is taught and learnt for literature sake as an art worthy of appreciation. For this reason, contemporary approaches such as the student-centred and socio-cultural learning approaches that have been found very effective in promoting students‘ active involvement in the text and enhancing personal construction of meaning have become the focal point of contemporary research in literature teaching.
According to Elliot (1990), Beach, Appleman, Hydns and Wilhelm (2006), innovative teachers are moving away from teacher-centred approaches where meaning is imposed on students to the student-centred approaches which expose students to activities that encourage personal response to the text. Crandall, Jaramillo, Olsen and Peyton (2002) believe that learning strategy is very important in the learning of concepts and teachers can employ various strategies to help students see how ideas or concepts relate to one another and help them develop a well structured mental picture about the content they are learning. Exposing students to effective learning strategy helps to deepen their understanding of the content. Chamot and O‘Malley (1994) asser that students who have a storehouse of strategies to draw from consciously or unconsciously monitor their own learning and do better than students who do not have such strategies. Therefore, teachers can use a variety of strategies to ensure students‘ active engagement with the prose texts they are reading and make personal responses to the texts too. Allington and Cunningham (1996) advocates for strategies which offer students opportunities to read literature that appeal to them and their interest and to which they will respond in unique ways. Stringer, Reynolds and Simpson (2003) emphasize strategies that allow children to learn by doing and take ownership of their learning through opportunities that lead to freedom of choiceand social interaction. By inference, researchers are advocates of child-centred and sociocultural strategies that promote students‘ active participation in the learning process.
Unfortunately, as research indicates learners are not exposed to these student centred strategies probably because teachers lack knowledge of these approaches and strategies or they do not consider their use of any importance (Uwaifo 1979; Ogunaike 2002). Teachers resort most often to the easiest strategy of ―take your book and read‘, making literature teaching in secondary school a teacher-centred activity. One way to enhance students‘ performance in prose literature is by the use of instructional strategies that promote students‘ active engagement with texts and provide opportunities for sharing what is read with others which the prevalent teacher-centred strategies used in the teaching of literature have not been able to achieve (Ogunaike 2002; Anyaniyi 2009). Teachers spend more time reading and narrating the story without much of students‘ participation in meaning construction. Hence, some researchers, Martinez-Roldan and Lopez-Robertson (2000); Fountas and Pinnels (2001); Daniels (2002); McElvain (2005); Marshall (2006); Sanusi (2010) favour the use of student-centred and participatory strategies to improve students‘ achievement in literature. Such strategies include literature circles and scaffolding instructional strategies. This justifies the use of literature circles and scaffolding strategies in this study.
Literature circle is not a new practice, it originated from the ‗reinvented‘ adult book club of the 1980‘s in the United States of America, but Daniels‘s first book in 1994 launched literature circles into limelight and increased its popularity among teachers and educational researchers (Rutherford, Carter, Hilmer, Kramer, Parker and Siebert 2009). According to Daniels (2002), the term ‗literature circles‘ was first coined and used by Kathy Short and Gloria Kaufman to refer to contemporary school-based book clubs and kid-led groups which exhibit real features of cooperative learning and studentcenteredness. Since then, literature circles has been called by many names such as Grand conversations (Brabham and Villaume 2000); literature study groups (Fountas and Pinnel 2001); Literature circles (Daniels 2002); Literacy clubs (Moller 2004); School based book clubs (Daniels and Zemelman (2004); Collaborative reading groups (O‘Brien 2007).These variations in terminology has resulted in what Daniels (2002) describes asundue divergence in the implementation of the strategy. This perhaps has led to the different definitions given to literature circles.
Literature circle has been described as ‗a group which brings students together for an indepth discussion on a work of fiction or non-fiction‘ (Fountas and Pinnell 2001); ‗a group of connected, competent readers who read for a personally meaningful purpose (Moller 2004) or ‗a small temporary collaborative literature group where students meet to select, read, discuss and share ideas on self-selected literature texts (Daniels 1994; 2002). Daniel‘s definition appears to be more detailed because it aptly depicts the characteristic features of the ideal literature circles. In literature circles, students are placed in small groups and are encouraged to read with focus, share and discuss what they have read and determine what is significant in what they are reading and why they consider such significant. The use of roles which are re-assigned at intervals provides a structured framework for sustainable focus during the discussion. Literature circles may be structured in various ways depending on what model best suits the needs of the students as well as the type of text being studied, in terms of fiction, non-fiction or content area text (Brown 2001; Chandler 2004). Besides the face-to-face structure, teachers and researchers are experimenting with virtual or online literature circles. The essence of virtual or online literature circles is not to replace the face-to-face classroom structure but to re-enforce it. The basic concepts and elements of literature circles are maintained while students are provided more opportunity to extend their interactions and sharing beyond the classroom space (Moreillon et al 2009; Kitsis 2010; Petko 2011).
1.2 Statement of the Problem
Literature is expected to promote reading for pleasure and encourage the development of reading skills. However, many students in secondary schools do not possess the necessary cognitive and affective skills needed to read and understand texts in literature. Hence, students‘ performance in WAEC literature in English examination has not been much to reckon with. Several factors affect students‘ performance in literature. They include factors associated with learners‘ home background, low level of interest in reading, poor language proficiency, poor comprehension skills and the instructional strategies used by teachers. Although Previous studies have been carried out on studentcentred strategies like discussion, reading-questioning techniques, outlining and advance organizers with regards to enhancing students‘ performance in literature but much empirical studies have not been carried out on literature circles and scaffolding instructional strategies in Nigeria. This study, therefore investigated the effects of basic literature circles, literature circles with roles and scaffolding instructional strategies on senior secondary school students‘ achievement and attitude to prose literature in English. It also determined the moderating effects of verbal ability and gender on the two dependent variables.
1.3 Objective of the Study
The main objective of this study is to investigate the effects of literature circle and drama in education secondary school attitude to prose literature.
Specific objectives include to:
- Examine the main effect of treatment on students‘ achievement in and attitude to prose literature.
- Assess the main effect of verbal ability on students‘ achievement in and attitude to prose literature.
- 3. Investigate the main effect of gender on students‘ (a) Achievement in and (b) Attitude to prose literature.
1.4 Research Questions
- What is the main effect of treatment on students‘ achievement in and attitude to prose literature?
- What is the main effect of verbal ability on students‘ achievement in and attitude to prose literature?
- What is the main effect of gender on students‘ (a) Achievement in and (b) Attitude to prose literature?
1.5 Research Hypothesis
- Ho1 There is no significant main effect of treatment on students‘ (a) Achievement in and (b) Attitude to prose literature.
- Ho2 There is no significant main effect of verbal ability on students‘ (a) Achievement in and (b) Attitude to prose literature.
- Ho3 There is no significant main effect of gender on students‘ (a) Achievement in and (b) Attitude to prose literature.
1.6 Significance of the Study
The fundamental roles of literature in the making of the enlightened and educated mind and exposing readers to important human values and human condition cannot be fully achieved without qualitative instruction in the teaching of prose literature. Hence, 19 the findings of this study would be useful to students and teachers of literature, curriculum planners, textbook writers, policy makers and other individuals interested in the teaching of literature-in- English. Specifically, it is hoped that the study would improve the way literature is taught and learnt through the strategies employed. This would in turn influence students‘ interest in reading and increase achievement in literature. It would also help to foster independent reading skills in students. It would likely make teachers who participated in the study aware of alternative and more effective instructional strategies for teaching literature, especially the ones used in this study. Again, the findings would equally be useful to textbook writers who may wish to incorporate these instructional strategies into their texts so that schools, individuals and interested groups may adopt them for schools and for private study. The result of this study would probably be beneficial to the general public because it would enable learners and teachers to see reading as a fun-filled activity, through the atmosphere of play pervading the classroom during literature circles discussion, thereby raising the reading interest of students which is presently considered to be low. This will also help to improve the low literacy level being experienced among students. The study would serve as basis for further research on the use of other child-centered strategies in the effective teaching of literature in senior secondary schools.
1.7 Scope of the Study
This study was basically concerned with senior secondary II students while eight senior secondary schools drawn from Abeokuta South, Abeokuta North, Odeda, and Obafemi/Owode local government areas in Ogun state were used for the study. The study made use of two modes of literature circles (basic literature circles and literature circles with roles) and scaffolding instructional strategies in the six experimental classes while the conventional teaching method was used for the two control groups. The two prose texts used wereEarnestHemingway‘s The Old Man and the Sea and Asare Konadu‘s A Woman in her Prime. The dependent variables are: achievement and attitude to prose literature while the dependent variables were gender and verbal ability which were manipulated at three and two levels respectively.
1.8 Limitation of the Study
This study is limited by issues like the completion time, which seems insufficient to carry out this investigation successfully and efficiently. This study is further constrained by the paucity of materials on the subject, which appears to be quite rare. The quality and scope of this study were greatly influenced by the lack of compliance of the teachers and students who participated in the research.
1.9 Definition of Terms
Scaffolding Instructional Strategy:
This is a teaching device/technique through which assistance is given to learners to enable them perform tasks which otherwise, they would not be able to carryout on their own without assistance.
Zone of Proximal Development:
This is the area in a learning continuum between what children can do without help and what they can do with competent assistance from either the teacher or the peer.
These are students‘ study groups which teachers appropriate as teaching method. Thus, it involves small groups of students coming together to read and share ideas on the text(s) they have read.
These are the various purposeful activities designed for the purpose of this study to enable students effectively read, comprehend, and interpret the prose literature texts used in this study.
Attitude to Prose Literature:
This involves learners‘ disposition in terms of their feelings, opinions, and beliefs about prose literature.
Achievement in Prose Literature:
This is what the student has learnt after undergoing a course of instruction as determined by the score of a test designed to measure what has been learnt. In this study, the achievement would be determined by the pre and posttest scores.
In this study, gender is used biologically to mean sex of students who participated in the study.
1.10 Organisations of the Study
There are five chapters in this study, the first of which discusses the background, statement of the research problem, aims, research question, and research hypotheses as well as the study’s significance, scope, and limitations. Chapter 2 contains conceptual, theoretical, and empirical reviews. The study methodology is covered in Chapter 3. This chapter covers the research design, the study’s population, the sample size and methodology, the data collection source and method, the study’s instruments, the data analysis method, and the validity and reliability of the study. Chapter four contains data presentation, Analysis and discussion of findings. Chapter five of this study encompasses the summary of findings, conclusion and recommendations.
Summary, Conclusion and Recommendation
5.1 Summary of Findings
The results of the study are summarized thus.
- There was a significant main effect of treatment on students‘ achievement in prose literature. Students in the scaffolding experimental group had higher achievement scores than those in the other three groups viz: basic literature circles, literature circles with roles and control. However, there was no significant effect of treatment on attitude towards prose literature. Students taught with basic literature circles obtained higher achievement scores than those taught with literature circles with roles. Similarly, students taught with literature circles with roles had higher achievement scores than those in the control group.
- There was no significant main effect of verbal ability on students‘ achievement and attitude to prose literature.
- There was no significant main effect of gender on students‘ achievement and attitude to prose literature. This shows that male and female students are not significantly different in their posttest achievement scores in prose literature. The same was also found in their attitude.
- The 2 – way interaction effect of treatment and verbal ability on both achievement and attitude to prose literature was not significant.
- There was no significant interaction effect of treatment and gender on students‘ achievement and attitude prose literature.
- The interaction effect of verbal ability and gender on students‘ achievement and attitude to prose literature was not significant.
- There was no significant 3-way interaction effect of treatment, verbal ability and gender on students‘ achievement and attitude to prose literature.
The results of the study have shown that the application of student-centered instructional strategies involving scaffolding and literature circles are effective in promoting students‘ engagement with text, personal responses, active participation during lessons and achievement in prose texts irrespective of their gender and verbal ability.
Recommendations Based on the findings of the study, the following recommendations are made:
- Teachers at both the primary and secondary levels of education are encouraged to adopt literature circles and scaffolding strategies in teaching literature in English.
- Teachers who teach other content area subjects are also encouraged to employ these strategies in their teaching.
- Due to students‘ poor language proficiency, it is recommended that bilingual approach should be adopted in using literature circles in the literature classroom.
- Literature circles have the potential to promote students‘ attitude to reading over time, this study recommends that researchers and classroom teachers should increase the duration of literature circles application for it to have positive impact on attitude.
- Schools are challenged to encourage the establishment of reading clubes in schools and communities to enable students improve their reading skills.
- Teachers of literature should be encouraged to attend conferences, workshops, seminars and in-service training to acquire practical experiences on how to manipulate these strategies.
- Government should address the issue of textbook availability. Texts should be made available to all levels of students or encourage parents to purchase texts for their wards.
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