Strategic Intervention Materials in Science

DEVELOPMENT ON THE ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE IN SCIENCE

USING STRATEGIC INTERVENTION MATERIAL

Kristine Joan DA. Barredo

Teacher II

Tunasan Elementary School

Muntinlupa City

 

ABSTRACT

This study investigated the effectiveness on the academic performance in Science using Strategic Intervention Material than traditional method of teaching. An experimental research was employed using the comparison of the results during the pretest and posttest. The SIM focusing on the least mastered skills were developed. The experimental group was given set of SIM while the control group was exposed to traditional method of teaching. Performance from both group were closely monitored and showed that there is no significant effect on the pretest before the intervention and had significant difference in the posttest after the intervention. This suggested that the strategic intervention material significantly contributed to the mastery of the lesson presented.

INTRODUCTION

            Elementary school students are naturally curious, which makes science an ideal subject for them to learn. Science allows students to explore their world and discover new things. It is also an active subject, containing activities such as hands-on- labs and experiments. This makes science well-suited to active younger children. Science is an important part of the foundation for education for all children. (Jessica Cook, eHow)

            Science teaches children necessary skills that they can use in other areas of their lives. Kidsource.com reports, “Early experiences in science help children develop problem-solving skills and motivate them toward a lifelong interest in the natural world.”

            Consequently, science is included as a core element in elementary and secondary levels despite conceptual complexity and high cost of implementation. (Batomalaque, 2009) Another justification for the inclusion of science in school curricula is that all citizens need to achieve a degree of “scientific literacy” to enable them to participate effectively as citizens in modern societies. 

Studies indicate however, that many of our Filipino learners are not attaining functional literacy, without which they find it too difficult to meet the challenges posed by our rapidly changing world.

BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY

            Students’ performance in the National Achievement Test shows that Science continues to be the most difficult field of study in basic education. The results are intended to guide the Department of Education in its efforts towards the improvement of the quality of education in public schools and to provide appropriate intervention for the students.

            According to the Basic Education Curriculum Primer 2002, Science and Health aims to help the Filipino child gain a functional understanding of science concepts and principles linked with real life situations, acquire science skills as well as scientific attitudes and values needed in solving everyday problems. These pertain to health and sanitation, nutrition, food production, and the environment and its conservation. There is no Science and Health for Grades I and II but simple science and health concepts which include the child’s interaction to his immediate environment are contents of English. These concepts reinforce the sensory-perceptual activities introduced in the 8-week ECD Curriculum. Likewise, process skills may be developed in Makabayan subject like Sibika at Kultura. Teaching Science and Health will formally start in Grade III using English as medium of instruction. In Grades IV-VI, more complex study of Science concepts will be taken up in preparation for High School work. The goal of Science is to demonstrate understanding how science, technology and health relate to the comprehension of the environment and application of skills, attitudes and values in solving varied life situations.

 But with the problems persisting today in Philippine education system, our stand for functional literacy to empower learners is at stake. The scarcity of teachers, poor classrooms and dearth of instructional materials, low student achievement and increasing number of out-of-school children hamper our learners to be active makers of meaningful life. The Trends in Mathematics and Science Survey (TIMSS) alone which was conducted five years ago revealed unsatisfactory results, the Philippines ranked 41st in Math and 42nd in Science out of 45 countries that were tested (Manila Times 2004). This proved that vast majority of Filipino students have performed way below par in all national achievement tests, and below the levels of most students from other countries in the international tests. Thus, education managers must focus on reforming and delivering quality instruction so that the Basic Education Curriculum will not be overwhelmed by the crisis. Students must be provided with maximum opportunities to become functionally literate in science.

This reflects the high dropout rates of children before the start of Grade 4 (or by age 10). Department of Education (DepEd) data show that for every 100 children who enter Grade 1, close to 15 do not make it into Grade 2, and roughly one-quarter (24 percent) have dropped out before Grade 4.

It is for these reasons that the researcher embarks on developing strategic intervention materials in Science for Grade 4 students that will enhance learning and remedy the least mastered skills of the students, thus attain growth in their academic performance.

STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM

            This study aimed to develop strategic intervention materials in Science that will enhance learning and remedy the least mastered skills of the students, thus attain growth in their academic performance.

Specifically, it attempted to answer the following questions:

  1. What is the level of academic performance of the pupils based on the pre-test and post test results using the two strategies in teaching Science:

1.1  Traditional Method

1.2  Strategic Intervention Material

  1. What significant difference that exists between the pre-test and post-test results between:

1.1  Traditional Method

1.2  Strategic Intervention Material

SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY

          People who work with the students should clearly understand the nature of the learner in order to be more effective in their dealings with them and with their problems. With these findings, it is hoped that a vivid picture of their nature, needs and aspirations can be seen and therefore become foundations for a good teacher-student relationship. In particular, the study is important to the following:

School Administration.     The findings of the study may help them plan appropriate interventions to fit student’s needs, especially to students with learning difficulty. and provide necessary instructional aids, to uplift quality education in public schools.

Curriculum Makers. Through this study, curriculum makers may able to devise the curriculum in strengthening the academic performance of the students to achieve quality education.

Science Supervisors. The result of the study may serve as the catalyst in improving instructional methods and identify the needs that caused the weakness in achieving good scientific skill. Implementing of the strategies and other measures necessary to obtain quality education could be devised by them.

Science Teachers. They may find the result of the study helpful in planning and initiating appropriate strategic intervention materials in teaching Science at any learning level inside the classroom and encourage other teachers to upgrade their methods and techniques in the teaching-learning process.

Parents. The findings of the study may enhance parent’s active participation in supporting the needs of their child and improve their relationship as supporters and partners of the school in achieving high academic performance of their children.

Pupils. This study may be a great help to pupils. It could give them motivation on how to cope with their difficulty and motivate them to study hard to overcome their weakness in Science.

Future Researchers. This study may serve as valuable source of data while conducting their studies.

POPULATION AND SAMPLING SIZE

The sample respondents of the study covered all 330 Grade Four pupils (165 males and 165 females) currently enrolled in Tunasan Elementary School during the School Year 2011-2012. The grade four pupils were tested which consists of eight sections. Four sections were taught using the traditional method (155 pupils) while the remaining 4 sections were taught using the Strategic Intervention Materials (175 pupils).

The following showed the distribution of the population:

 

 

 

 

 

Table 2

Distribution of Population

 

Gr. And Sec.

No. of Male

No. of Female

Total

Teaching Method Used

Gr IV-1

21

24

45

Using S.I.M

Gr IV-2

23

21

44

Traditional Method

Gr IV-3

16

28

44

Using S.I.M

Gr IV-4

21

20

41

Traditional Method

Gr IV-5

16

25

41

Using S.I.M

Gr IV-6

16

27

43

Traditional Method

Gr IV-7

32

13

45

Using S.I.M

Gr IV-8

20

7

27

Traditional Method

 

165

165

330

 

 

DESCRIPTION OF RESPONDENTS

This study was composed of respondents from pupils who are currently enrolled in Tunasan Elementary School. In this manner, the respondents were grouped by grade level with eight sections. Each section had diverse qualities in terms of intellect and scientific ability.

The sample respondents of this study covered the 330 randomly selected pupils (165 males and 165 females) of Tunasan Elementary School enrolled during the School Year 2010-2011. 

INSTRUMENTATION

            The following were the research instruments used in the study.

  1. 1.    Strategic Intervention Materials

They were intervention materials which designed to help teachers provide the students a needed support to make progress. They tried to increase and deepen their skills, knowledge and understanding from concrete science to what is more abstract. They gave the students the opportunity to explore their understanding and make sense of these new scientific ideas. They helped the students what they know and understand from the teacher to formalize their thinking. Furthermore, they were instructional materials meant to reteach the concept (s) and skill (s) to help the learners master a competency-based skill which they were not able to develop during classroom teaching.

Each intervention material has five parts such as the guide card, activity card, assessment card, enrichment card and reference card. The guide card stimulated the students’ interest on the topic discussed and gave a preview of what they would learn. It presented the skill focus that mentioned the learning competency, the three subtasks or activities and the concrete outcome or product students are expected to demonstrate or produce. This cited the activities and challenged the learner in performing the tasks which were competency-oriented and can be done individually or per group. The activity card followed the guide card where it translated the focus skills in at least three activities. It provided activities that were organized based on the sequence of the focus skills written in the guide card and included examples to concretize the concepts, particularly those drawn from real life experience. The activities included in the activity allowed students to make discoveries and formulate ideas on their own, guide and challenge their thinking and learning and use local data and situations like interacting with people in the community. It also provided transition statements that reorganized students’ accomplishments. Likewise, the intervention materials provided questions that guided students to develop concepts and focus skills, elicited the message or meaning that a student can take away from an activity and established the relationship between the topic/lesson and what students already know or are familiar to them. The assessment card provided exercises, drills or activities that allowed students to assess their understanding of what they have learned correct errors when appropriate and monitor their learning and use feedback about their progress. This card was formulated standard test formats to give students practice in test taking techniques. It therefore has a separate card that includes the answer key. The enrichment card provided activities that reinforced the content of the lesson and provided opportunities for students to apply what they have learned to other subject areas or in new contexts. It .also encouraged students to work independently or in a group to explore answers to their own questions. The reference card provided reading to students. It related the content with the students’ life experiences. It included a carefully and well-researched list of resources that helped students reinforce concepts and skills that they learned. It also included additional useful content not found in the books.

In a nutshell, the strategic intervention materials ensured alignment of activities with the tasks/objectives, kept the activities short and simple, provided a variety of activities to cater to the diverse learning styles; provided number of activities so that the learner can have enough practice in developing the skill and lastly focus on the least mastered skills, simple, easy to understand and reproduce.

2. PRE-TEST/ POST-TEST

            It was a 20-items teacher-made test which was designed to measure the mastery level of the students on the lesson chosen by the researcher. The items in the test were analyzed and the difficulty/discrimination indices were taken to discard or reject the item. Items which were not within the range of 0.20 to 0.80 difficulty index and 0.30 to 0.80 discrimination index were discarded and items fall within the prescribe limit were retained. Furthermore the validated test was finalized and a pilot pretest was administered to two groups of respondents before the experiments. The experimental group was exposed to the use of SIM while the control group used the traditional way of teaching. Likewise, a pretest was given to both groups before the introduction of the lesson and a posttest after the end of the lesson. Both pretests and posttests given to the experimental and control group were the same.

 

 

 

 

ACTION PLAN

COMPONENTS

KEY IMPROVEMENTS

STRATEGIES

RESOURCES REQUIRED

PERSONS INVOLVE

TIME FRAME

EXPECTED OUTPUT

1. Pupil Development

Increase MPS in Science by 10%

Identify and target pupils with minimum growth (slow learners)

Performance Target Monitoring Chart, practice tests, Least Mastered Skills,

MTs, Science Coordinator, Science Teachers

Year-Round

Targets set in MPS are met.

Set targets for pupil achievement (by the end of each grading period)

Reported pupil's achievement

Conduct on-the spot tests

Pupils’ test performances were measured.

Develop personalized intervention programs for slow learners

Pupil's profile, strategic intervention materials, monitoring and evaluation report

Pupils-at-risk and below minimum performance decreased.

Engage pupils in meaningful activities that stimulate learning.

Allow pupils to do hands-on activities to learn more

Activity sheets, laboratory materials, others

MTs, Science Coordinator, Science Teachers

Year-Round

Pupils participation in science programs increased.

Conduct educational field trips in museums, observatories or science exhibits.

scheduled field trips, consent form, endorsement from Division Office and School

An increased in pupil's learning outcomes is evident.

 

DATA GATHERING PROCEDURES

            Had been permitted by the School Principal, Mr. Antonio C. Gagala and the School Science Coordinator, the researcher conducted the study in Tunasan Elementary School. The researcher informed the School Science Coordinator, grade chairman, and the teacher-advisers of each section.

            The researcher together with other Science teachers of Tunasan Elementary School had identified the least mastered skills in Grade Four Science and found out that mastery level was not achieved by the students in the previous years and current year. Thus, the researcher chose the least skill of all the least mastered in the competencies given by the Department of Education which was the content of the strategic intervention material.

A pilot pretest was administered to two groups of respondents before the experiments. The experimental group was exposed to the use of SIM while the control group used the traditional way of teaching. Likewise, a pretest was given to both groups before the introduction of each lesson and a posttest after the end of each lesson. Both pretests and posttests given to the experimental and control group were the same.

The lesson in the intervention was read and studied by the students and the researcher directed the students to learn in the context of their own personal experiences. Furthermore, the control group was given the same lesson, same number of contact time and rules with the experimental group. They were given the same pretests and posttest after the treatment. And their scores in every treatment were tallied and interpreted by the researcher to determine whether there were significant differences on their mean scores in the pretests and posttests.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

PRESENTATION, ANALYSIS AND INTERPRETATION OF DATA

This chapter discusses the results of the study on the comparative analysis of academic performance of pupils in Science using traditional method vs. the use of strategic intervention material. Statistically, the problems of the study were answered by the following data gathered by the researcher.

  1. Level of academic performance of the pupils based on the pre-test and post test results using the two strategies in teaching Science in terms of:

1.1 Traditional Method

Table 3

Results of the Pre-Test and Post-Test Results Using Traditional Method of Teaching

 

Grade & Section

TRADITIONAL METHOD

Difference

Learning Level

N

PRE-TEST

POST-TEST

Gr. IV-2

44

51.89

84.09

32.2

Mastery

Gr. IV-4

41

42.42

73.17

30.75

Nearing Mastery

Gr.IV-6

43

36.82

62.02

25.2

Nearing Mastery

Gr. IV-8

27

27.77

55.55

27.78

Nearing Mastery

 

155

39.73

68.71

28.98

 

 

It could be seen from Table 3 that all of the sections in Grade Four has an MPS increase between the pre-test and post-test results. However, only Grade IV-2 got the Mastery Level of 84.09 % MPS among the other sections in Grade IV. Most of them got nearing mastery and beyond the DepED Target which is 75% passing scores.

 

 

 

  1. Using Strategic Intervention Material

Table 4

Results of the Pre-Test and Post-Test Results Using Strategic Intervention Material

 

Grade & Section

USING S.I.M.

Difference

Learning Level

N

PRE-TEST

POST-TEST

Gr. IV-1

45

57.40

96.41

39.01

Mastery Level

Gr. IV-3

44

40.65

92.80

52.15

Mastery Level

Gr.IV-5

41

38.75

89.15

50.40

Mastery Level

Gr.IV-7

45

31.29

87.40

56.11

Mastery Level

 

175

42.02

91.44

49.42

 

 

Table 4 showed evident results after Strategic Intervention Material was implemented in teaching Science. Post-tests results got a remarkable improvement. (49.42%) Grade IV-7 got the highest increase (56.11%).  Posttests indicated that students who were taught with material employing the causal style of discourse had significantly better retention of facts and concepts and were superior in applying this knowledge in problem-solving exercises. They gained mastery level of the lesson presented.

  1. Significant difference that exists between the pre-test and post-test results between:

2.1Traditional Method

2.2 Strategic Intervention Material

 

 

Table 5

T-Test on the Significant Difference between the Pre-Test and Post-Test Results Between Traditional Method against Strategic Intervention Material

 

 

Variable

T-Value

P-Value

Decision

Interpretation

 

Traditional Method VS Strategic Intervention Material

 

Pre-Test

0.476

0.00855

Accept Ho

NS

         Post-Test

8.93

0.0046

Reject Ho

S

 

 

 

 

 

0.05 Level of Significance                         S= significant

                                                                                                               NS= not significant

It could be gleaned in Table 5 that there is no significant difference in the pre-test results between the two teaching method. This means that pupils from both groups had the same understanding of the lesson before it was taught. But during the Post-test periods of the two teaching method after the lesson was taught, it showed significant difference. This means that the experimental group which used the Strategic Intervention Material significantly better retention of facts and concepts and were superior in applying this knowledge in problem-solving exercises.

FINDINGS, CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS

The researcher’s findings agreed with the findings of Hogan (2000) and Woodward (2004), who found out that intervention materials contributed to better learning of the concepts among students. Posttests and maintenance tests indicated that students who were taught with material employing the causal style of discourse had significantly better retention of facts and concepts and were superior in applying this knowledge in problem-solving exercises. Furthermore, students learn best when they can build on past experience, relate what they are learning to things that are relevant to them, have direct "Hands-on" experience, construct their own knowledge in collaboration with other students and faculty, and communicate their results effectively.

Findings

The study came up with the following findings:

1.  There was no significant difference on the performance of the experimental group and control group in the pretests. They were of the same level of intelligence and mastery before they were exposed to experiment. Although there was slight difference on their mean score, it was not that significant based on the computed t-value of 0.476 at 0.05 significance level. This attested that both groups of respondents had the same level of mastery before an intervention was introduced to the experimental group and conventional method to the control group.

3. There was significant difference on the performance of the experimental group in the pretest and posttest. The difference in the mean scores of posttest and pretest of 8.93 was indeed significant. There was a positive transfer of learning in the two groups. However, higher mean was observed from the experimental group after the presentation of the intervention materials.

4. The strategic intervention materials were effective in mastering the competency based –skills in science based on the mean gain scores in the posttests of the experimental and control groups.

 

Conclusions

In the light of the findings, the following conclusions were drawn:

1. The experimental and control groups performed at the same level before the experiment.

3. The experimental group performed better in the posttest than the control group.

4. The strategic Intervention materials were effective in teaching competency-based skills. There was significant difference between the mean scores in the posttests of the experimental and control groups.

 

Recommendations

Based on the outcomes and implications of the study, the following are recommended:

1. Science teachers can use the strategic intervention materials made by the researcher to re-teach the concepts and skills and help the students master the competency-based skill

2. Seminars and in-service training should be conducted in the division level regarding development and implementation of the strategic intervention materials in the classroom.

3. Science teachers should develop more strategic intervention materials for the remaining lessons which were not included in researcher’s SIMS.

4. Strategic intervention materials for other subjects should be made to address the least mastered skills.

5. A similar study may be conducted covering a bigger number of respondents in another venue.

 

References

Bureau of Elementary Education 2004 Annual Report. http://bee-deped.tripod.com/bee2004annualreport

 

Das, R C.( 2004) Science Teaching in Schools. Sterling Publishers Private Limited

De La Cruz, Eduardo. (1990, March). Development of the Work-Text in Algebra, PCU March 1990

Ediger, Marlow.(2005) Teaching Science Successfully, Discovery Publishing House

Garcia, Maan V.( 2003, September). Educator, Magazine for Teachers, Manila Philippines

Llewellyn, D. (2005) “Teaching High School Science Through Inquiry: A Case Study Approach” Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press.

Manila Times, Tuesday, July 6, 2004. The Sorry State of RP Public Education

Manila Bulletin. (2003, September). Educators Speak. Manila Philippines

Panorama. (2004, May). Giving Quality Education to our children, Manila Philippines

 

 

 

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