School and the community: Managing disruptive learner behaviour in rural learning ecologies
Keywords:Disruptive learner behaviour, Rural school, Critical consciousness, Community, Participatory action research
Managing disruptive learner behaviour has for many years been a matter of concern to school administrators, teachers and parents. In Zimbabwe, teaching and learning processes have been affected by serious interference that has adversely affected the learners and the teachers. The research question addressed in this study relates to the strategies that can be utilised by communities and schools with a view of managing disruptive learner behaviour in rural learning ecologies. To answer the research question, we used a participatory action research design. This community-based qualitative study was underpinned by the critical consciousness concept that can be described as central to the application of critical thinking. Data were generated utilising focus-group discussions and reflective narratives with teachers and parents and analysed following Fairclough’s (1992) critical discourse analysis. The findings suggest that disruptive learner behaviour in rural schools could potentially be managed through parental involvement, the use of problem-solving approaches, learner participation in all school programmes and the antecedent-behaviour-consequence approach. The study concluded that disruptive learner behaviour should be properly managed within and out of school to achieve meaningful teaching and learning.
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