The Influence of Role Play Teaching Technique on English Performance Among Learners With Hearing Impairment, Kenya

The Influence of Role Play Teaching Technique on English Performance Among Learners With Hearing Impairment, Kenya

Judith Opiyo Yabbi
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-6471-4.ch012
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Role-play is a holistic pedagogy in teaching. The technique instills critical thinking in pupils, enhances emotional intelligence, and improves morality and forms of realism about information. The chapter examines the influence of role-play teaching technique on English performance among the pupils with hearing impairment in Kenyan primary schools. The chapter looks at several elements of role-playing such as games, real-life expression, imitation, positive impact, and the challenges facing the effective implementation of the use of role-play in teaching and learning in primary schools of learners with hearing impairment. This study is a desktop review and only relies on secondary materials. The literature was sourced in various databases. The review revealed that role-play improves the self-efficacy of the learner since the technique is grounded in reality. Learning is enhanced when the activities involved are memorable and engaging.
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The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (1948) article 26 stipulates that children with special needs have a right to education as it is a fundamental human right. In Africa, Kenya is considered to be the most advanced country in the provision of special education. The Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD) has been at the forefront in the development of policies and strategies that schools should adopt and enhance quality education for learners, inclusive of those with hearing impairment. Despite all efforts made by the Kenyan government to provide education to learners with special needs, learners with hearing-impaired still lag behind in the National examinations more so in English subject (MOE, 2015). Several factors have been attributed to their poor performance among them being poor teaching strategies, lack of teaching and learning resources, incompetent personnel in the field of sign language, and many others. Learners with hearing impairment always need approaches that will engage them and improve their learning skills. This chapter looks at the Influence of role-play teaching technique on English performance among learners with hearing impairment in Kenya.

According to Emre (2015) role play is an active teaching technique that integrates theatre, imitations, games, and expressions of life realities in any educational topic. It involves, assigning roles, objects, or purpose to one or more members in a group. Role-play may be steered by a single individual, two persons, or in sets of persons (Mweri J., 2014). Play is a behaviour that is self-motivated, freely chosen, process-oriented, and enjoyable (Awopegpa et al., 2013, p, 99). Using role play as a teaching strategy could yield unflinching performance among the deaf (Emre, 2015). Therefore, this chapter addresses the impact of games on English performance of learners with hearing impairment, the extent to which imitation teaching approaches have on English performance among children with hearing impairment, the extent to which real-life expressions influence English performance among learners with hearing impairment. In addition, it analyses the positive and negative impact of role-playing on English performance among learners with hearing impairment, and investigate challenges facing the implementation of role-play teaching methodology.

In Kenya, English language dominate politics and commerce, spheres that are responsible for industrial development (UNICEF, 2016). The language is hailed for creating inclusive society (Mweri J., 2014). It is for this reason that the article 7 of the Kenyan constitution recognizes Swahili and English as co-official languages (Njogu, 2020). Moreover, the language is a de facto international language for business, advertising, academics media among other economic and industrial development (Ufier, 2017). Kenyans teach English as part of school curriculums and stand-alone subjects. English is the language of instruction in all Kenyan learning institutions. It is believed that language skills promote international trade and better workforce.

The understanding of English language by LHI not only promote inclusivity in industrial development but also enables the learners to be socially inclusive in the society. Studies carried out by Chabari and Awori (2017) state that the deaf student and pupils have continuously performed poorly in English in Kenya National Examination, both at Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) and Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE). The extensive studies blame poor performance on teaching strategies employed by the teachers (Chabari & Awori, 2017; Maina, 2018).

In teaching English, Chabari and Awori (2017) identify teaching new words and using them in sentences, continuous writing and copying sentences. On the other hand, Maina (2018) observed that teachers use old methods such as lecture and group discussion. Mweri (2014) criticized these pedagogical strategies, the scholar argues that they are a state of denial since they focus on teaching the deaf how to speak. This analysis of literature provides evidence of role play as effective teaching strategy in solving the chronic poor performance in English among the LHI.

“When I hear I forget, I see I remember, I do, I understand (Chinese old saying). “Tell me, and I will forget. Show me, and I may not remember. Involve me, and I'll understand” (Ancient American Proverb).

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