Making lessons more effective: practice paper

Organisation(s): UK. Dept for International Development

Date: 2017

Pages: 27 p.


ESSPIN’s goal is to improve pupil learning. In 2008, when the programme began, it would be fair to say that classrooms in Nigeria, like the schools themselves and the institutions that were supposed to support them, were failing. Teachers’ classroom skills and content knowledge were weak; they understood neither how to teach effectively, nor what to teach. A study of classroom practice undertaken as part of ESSPIN’s baseline described lessons where teachers organised learners as a whole class for 97% of the time, all but one minute of a lesson, and spent more than half their time standing at the blackboard. Mostly learners were passive. For half the time they were listening to the teacher, while for another 10% of their time they did nothing at all. A second baseline study looked at the degree to which teachers had sufficient working knowledge to teach the Primary 4- 6 curriculum. Out of 20,000 teachers in Kwara State, only 75 teachers reached this standard whilst there were no teachers at all reaching it in either Jigawa or Kano States.

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