Critical Analysis of Problems Encountered in Incorporating Indigenous Knowledge in Science Teaching by Primary School Teachers in Zimbabwe

  • Edward Shizha


In Zimbabwe the need to incorporate indigenous knowledge in science education to reflect local cultural settings cannot be overemphasized. Current policies on science are situated in Western cultural definitions, thus marginalizing indigenous knowledge, which is misconceived as irrational and illogical. This study used qualitative research methods. Ten teachers were purposively selected and interviewed to gain their insights into problems faced in incorporating indigenous knowledge into science teaching. The study found that the problems were attitudinal, institutional, and systemic. Teachers were found to be conservative “gatekeepers” who exhibited negative attitudes toward indigenous science and supported maintaining the teaching of Western science. The study suggests reforming and transforming science curriculum, policymaking, and teacher education to promote cross-cultural science in Zimbabwean primary schools.