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Teachers’ reflections on the teaching of Mathematics in Grade 4 in Nongoma Circuit Management Centre.

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This dissertation presents an action research study of four teachers who reflected on their teaching of the Mathematics curriculum (CAPS) in KwaZulu-Natal primary schools. The study employ a critical paradigm. The study intended to explore teachers’ reflection on the teaching of Mathematics in Grade 4 in Nongoma Circuit Management Centre. Hence, the study used reflective activity, one-on-one semi structured interview and observation with an aim of generating data. The groups were sampled (using purposive and convenient sampling) with the intention of including teachers with whom I could work with without any difficulty. Action research was instituted with an aim of scrutinizing challenges Mathematics teachers faced when teaching Mathematics CAPS in KwaZulu-Natal. The curricular spider-web was utilised as a conceptual framework for data analysis. The findings of the study revealed that teachers’ reflections were influenced by factors such as rationale, goals, content, accessibility, teachers’ activities, teachers’ roles, resources, time, location and assessment. The rationale for teaching (personal, societal and professional) were found to be most influential in teachers’ reflection. In the case whereby teachers were guided by personal rationale for teaching Mathematics, they demonstrated a conceptual understanding of what they were teaching. On the other hand, where teachers were influenced by societal rationale for teaching, they did not make decisions that contribution to successful teaching of Mathematics teaching. Teachers who were influenced by professional rationale believed that their qualifications assisted them to teach Mathematics effectively. This study recommended that teachers must be directed by rationale in their teaching in order to affect the teaching and learning of Mathematics in Grade 4. Moreover, the study recommends that there is a need for on-going capacity building for Mathematics teachers by the Department of Education, so that they keep well-informed with new and pioneering methods for teaching Mathematics in Grade 4.


Masters Degree. University of KwaZulu-Natal, Durban.