The role of indigenous knowledge in/for environmental education : the case of a Nguni story in the Schools Water Action Project.

Masuku , Lynette Sibongile (1999) The role of indigenous knowledge in/for environmental education : the case of a Nguni story in the Schools Water Action Project. Masters thesis, Rhodes University.

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Abstract

In March 1997 an indigenous knowledge story was included by the Schools Water Action Project (SWAP)partners in a resource pack for Water Week educational activities. This research developed as the result of an interaction between myself and some of the schools while we investigated water quality within Howick in the KwaZulu Natal Midlands. An interest in understanding the role of indigenous knowledge in/for environmental education developed. Some of the teachers and students involved in the water audit were requested to share their views on the role of indigenous knowledge in/for environmental education. From here the study broadened to also include interviews with elderly community members and environmental educators involved in materials development processes. This post-positivistic case study documents the views of a small sample of interviewees using the SWAP story entitled Sweet Water as a spring board towards a better understanding of indigenous knowledge within the school context, with a particular aim to inform educational materials development processes. The study displayed that a link which exists between indigenous knowledge and environmental education needs to be brought to the fore. This is likely to happen with the blurring of boundaries between home and school as learning contexts, a process which student interviewees emphasised, along with the need for respecting values that award respect to the environment. Elderly community members were of the view that they have a role to play in addressing educational problems such as interpersonal and intercultural respect. However, the study also raised several issues around the complexities surrounding indigenous knowledge processes, including its appropriation, commodification and reification.

Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Uncontrolled Keywords:Environmental education, South Africa, KwaZulu-Natal
Subjects:L Education > L Education (General)
Divisions:Faculty > Faculty of Education > Education
ID Code:2318
Deposited By: Madireng Monyela
Deposited On:12 Dec 2011 07:12
Last Modified:06 Jan 2012 16:22
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