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Localization and Contextualization of Science Activities


in Enhancing Learners’ Performance
Jeffrey O. Ballesteros
jedyl_0120@yahoo.com
Capas Integrated School
Agoo, La Union, Philippines
+63909-6409-240
Adviser: Dr. Tessie Q. Peralta, Ph. D.

ABSTRACT

Localization and contextualization is a new approach to learning and highlighted in the K to 12


Curriculum. This study determined the performance of learners using localization and contextualization
approach in teaching Science. The one-shot pretest- posttest experimental research design was used. The
data gathered were treated using frequency, percentage, mean, standard deviation, Pearson correlation
and t- test. SPSS software was used. This study was conducted during the third quarter of the SY 2014-
2015 to 37 Grade 9 learners of Capas Integrated School.

Findings showed that most of the respondents had a “developing” proficiency along their
previous grades in Earth Science. Most of them are “tactile” learners and showed a “favorable” attitude
towards Science. The overall performance of the learners showed a “proficient” level with a
mean of 86.67 that implies that there was significant improvement in their performance in Science using
localization and contextualization approach in teaching Science.

Keywords: localization, contextualization, performance, style, attitude

Introduction
There is a consensus that in many places around the world, science education is facing serious
challenges. Those seeking to improve science education face numerous, and sometimes coupled,
problems. In many places, the lack of resources – both educational and financial – is linked with a dearth
of adequately trained teachers and the growing popularity of non-scientifically-based belief systems. As
countries face the demands of expanding populations under economic constraints and political realities,
education as a whole is frequently one of the first areas in which funding is cut to free up resources for
other, apparently more pressing, demands. This trend is amplified in the area of sciences, since often
those in the political decision-making sector have limited appreciation of scientific disciplines and their
importance to the vitality of their country’s economy and future well-being. It is clear that developing
countries face greater challenges in science education than economically developed countries due to lack
of teaching materials, including books, computer and communications technologies, community-based
science centers, laboratory facilities and equipment, as well as shortage of skilled teachers.
In order to attain or reach globally competitive learners and produce a 21 st century learner,
science has been the keystone to quality education. Science is an active subject that demands that hands-
on and mind-on experiences that challenge pupils’ initiatives are encouraged. Teaching methods that
promote understanding and thinking with emphasis on scientific processes should be employed and the
rote learning of scientific facts de-emphasized. Also, there is a need for science teachers to take the
abstract notion out of science by using real-to-life, simple and down-to-earth instructional materials which
can be resourced from the environment.
Resources for science teaching are not only found in the classroom, but they are also available in
the immediate school environment and community. As such, a science teacher should be familiar with
the immediate school environment and the community in order to be able to source out all the human and
non-human materials that can facilitate science learning.
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There is a consensus that in many places around the world, science education is facing serious
challenges like the lack of resources -both educational and financial, and dearth of adequately trained
teachers. As countries face the demands of expanding populations under economic constraints and
political realities, education as a whole is frequently one of the first areas in which funding is cut to free
up resources for other, apparently more pressing, demands.
It is clear that developing countries face greater challenges in science education, than
economically developed countries, due to lack of teaching materials, including books, computing and
communications technologies, community-based science centers, laboratory facilities and equipment, as
well as shortage of skilled teachers.
According to IBE (2007) and UNESCO (2008), education in science serves four purposes: First,
it prepares students to study science at higher levels of education. Second, it prepares students to enter the
workforce, pursue occupations and take up careers; third, it prepares them to become more scientifically
literate citizens; fourth, it prepares them from the changes that are resulting from the application of digital
technologies that are the most rapid, most widespread, and probably the most pervasive influence that
science has ever had on human society.
The Report reviews recent international studies of math and science achievement (PISA, TIMSS,
ROSE) and identifies some common conclusions of these studies, namely, that student achievement is
highest in countries where education has been traditionally valued, and where teaching is a respected
occupation. These studies also show, however, that high student achievement in science by young people
of high school age is not necessarily tied to an increased interest in a scientific or technical career.
Different international surveys or assessments of the performance of Filipino learners in Science
and Mathematics in the TIMSS and PISA tell that we rank very low. The high performing countries, like
Australia, Brunei, England, Japan, Taiwan, Thailand, Singapore, New Zealand and USA follow a spiral
progression approach (Achieve, Inc., 2003).
Because of the importance of science education across the nations, the Philippines is on its way in
upgrading Filipino learners to be globally competitive and holistically developed through the
implementation of one of the major changes in the Philippine educational system, which is the
implementation of the K to 12 Curriculum, kinder to 12 years of Basic Education. This reformation is
constituted in the Republic Act 10533 of the Philippines known as the "Enhanced Basic Education Act of
2013". One item here is: "The curriculum shall use the spiral progression approach to ensure mastery of
knowledge and skills after each level" as well as the implementing rules and regulations which state that
“the curriculum shall be contextualized and global and shall be flexible enough to enable and allow
schools to be localized, indigenous and enhance the same based on their respective educational
context.”(Rule II, Curriculum Section, 10.10.2)
As such, contextualization and localization are now an emerging theory or strategy in order to
gain the goal of quality education and scientific literacy.
Contextualization is developing new skills, knowledge, abilities and attitudes in students in
presenting new subject matter in a meaningful and relevant context. Localization on the other handby
Taylor (2004) is “...Freedom for schools or local education authorities to adopt this curriculum to local
conditions,” and “relating the content of the curriculum and the processes of teaching and learning to the
local environment”. It is based on local needs and relevance for the learners where there are flexibility
and creativity of the lessons. According to Tomlinson and Masahura (2004), the advantages of localizing
and contextualizing the curriculum are: cultural sensitivity, potential for personalization, easy availability
of resources, direct relevance of materials to learners, and ownership of the development process.A
holistic learning process aims to help students understand the meaning of teaching materials with it in the
context of day to day (the context of personal, social and cultural), so that students have the
knowledge/skills which are dynamic and flexible to actively construct their own understanding (Bandono,
2008).
Localization, according to Taylor (2004) is “...Freedom for schools or local education authorities
to adopt this curriculum to local conditions,” and “relating the content of the curriculum and the processes
of teaching and learning to the local environment”.
Dease (2012) states that CTL is a theory which is based on the notion that learning can only occur
when students are able to connect between content and context. Gabby (2011) defines CTL as a concept
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of learning that helps teachers link between the materials taught with real-world situations of students and
encourage them to make the connection between the knowledge possessed by its application in their lives
as family members and in the community.
Johnson (2010) says that CTL is based on the discovery that the students find meaning in their
schoolwork when they join the content of academic subjects’ lessons with the context of daily life. It is
identified as a promising strategy that actively engages students and promotes improved learning and
skills development (Baker, Hope & Karandjef, 2009).
Another definition promoted by Johnson (2002) is that CTL is an educational process that helps
students see meaning in the academic subject in the context of their daily lives, that is, with the context of
their personal, social, and cultural circumstances. To achieve this aim, it covers the following eight
components: making meaningful connections, doing significant work, self-regulated learning,and
collaborating, critical and creative thinking, nurturing the individual, reaching high standards, and using
authentic assessments. In other words, when we talk about context, most people say that it relates to their
social life. In the classroom teaching, CTL means teacher should present to the student the real world
inside the classroom.
One of the weaknesses of contextualized instruction is the unavailability of resources in which
most of the school in the Philippines lacks resources to support authentic learning and the realization of
competent and result-based mechanism of science literacy and quality education. With this weakness of
contextual teaching and learning, localization of resources will serve as an avenue in generating authentic
learning to the 21st century learners.
Localization is about making content usable and adaptable to meet local needs, address a
particular teaching style or learning style, to adapt to a different grade level, to adapt for a different
discipline, to adjust to a different learning environment, to address diversity needs, to address a cultural
preference, to support a specific pedagogical need, and to address either a school or a district's
standardized curriculum.
Furthermore, localization and the contextualization learning approach constitute different learning
strategies as mentioned below:
Graphic organizers link the language and content, often forming a bridge to knowledge that the
students may already have in their first language.
Conceptmapping can help students visualize how ideas are connected and lead to understanding
of linguistic relationships and how knowledge is organized.
A decision-making model such as What I Have, What I Need offers a step-by-step process that
encourages students to look for more than one solution, choose the best alternative and develop an action
plan for implementing their decision.
Flowcharts graphically depict a sequence of events, actions, rules or decisions.
Idea builders create a context for introducing or clarifying new concepts like developing an
understanding of a particular value.
KWL is a brainstorming strategy that encourages students to be active learners.
Think–pair–share strategy makes students think individually, turn to a partner and discuss in
pairs (or trios) and then share responses with the large group.
Games strategy can be an effective means of learning new vocabulary, reinforcing concepts and
assessing literacy skills.
Interviews and surveys can be conducted on almost any topic and aim to facilitate the
development of language through application. They can be used to collect information from a defined
sample of people to determine and report the frequency of particular responses to specific questions.
Model making strategy is a process where students make a representation or three-dimensional
representation of a thing which aids the learners better visualize the real world or identity of the object.
Interactive Engagement (IE) methods are those designed at least in part to promote conceptual
understanding through interactive engagement of students in heads-on (always) and hands-on (usually)
activities which yield immediate feedback through discussion with peers and/or instructors.
Peer Assisted Learning Strategies (PALS) is designed to help students improve in reading and
other academic skill areas. The steps are reading: (a) predicting, (b) partner reading, (c) retelling, and (d)
summarizing.
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Differentiated instructional materials are targeted toward classrooms with students of different
learning needs.
Experience-based environmental learning is an opportunity to learn through one's own lifestyle
and actions like applying classroom topics like global warming or energy use to their own lives.

Framework of the Study

The foregoing discussion on the contextualization and localization of science activities in


enhancing the learners’ performance provides the theoretical framework of the study.

Authentic Learning

Fig. 1. Framework of the Study

A literature review indicates that contextualization is grounded in a range of interrelated theories


about how people learn. These include researches on motivation theory, problem-based learning, social,
cognitive theory, learning styles, brain research, constructivism, progressivism, cognitivism, collaborative
learning, social learning theory and community –based learning theory.
Brain research theory helps us to understand how we learn and can stimulate a student’s brain
to develop patterns and create meaning by linking experience and sensory stimuli to new knowledge
through real-life application.
Collaborative learning theory assumes that students create learning within this social context
rather than within the solitary confines of their own studying or by just listening to the instructor. This
approach is also distinct from “cooperative learning” which many theorists deem more appropriate for
children; collaborative learning is more closely aligned with the needs of adult learners and adult
education (Van Hook, 2008).
Another is John Dewey’s theory of Constructivism. This theory encourages the students to
create their knowledge based on their own experience, applying these ideas to a new situation, and
integrating the new knowledge gained by pre-existing intellectual constructs (Berns& Erickson, 2001).
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It can be gleaned also from John Dewey progressivism in which it helps students to study well if
they learn about something that they have known. Teaching-learning process will be produced if the
students are involved actively in the teaching- learning process at school.
The theory of Cognitivism also influences the philosophy of contextual teaching and learning
(CTL). The students will learn so well if they actively involved in the classroom activities and have a
chance to inquire it by themselves.
In keeping with the philosophy of CTL and learning styles sensitivity, Brown (1996) also
suggests “personalizing the learning environment, have the students related personal experiences to
content” helps learners engage the material and makes learning more powerful and significant (Silverman
&Casazza, 2000).
Another relevance and highlights of CTL summarized by Baker, Hope &Karandjef (2009) is the
motivationtheory that asserts learners to be self-directed, enriched by a diversity of personal experience,
ready to learn, life-centered, task- centered and problem-centered and motivated by internal factors.
As an intentional dimension of the curriculum, community-based learning helps students
acquire, practice, and apply subject matter knowledge and skills. At the same time, students develop the
knowledge, skills, and attributes of effective citizenship by identifying and acting on issues and concerns
that affect their own communities.
Social cognition theory emphasizes the primary role of culture in knowledge construction. In
other words, cognitive development occurs as children acquire information from the surrounding culture,
typically processing it, directly or indirectly, through interactions with a teacher, parent or friends who
transfer knowledge from that culture.
Situated learning theorists also hold that social interaction plays a major role in constructing
knowledge. Learning arises out of a specific activity, context, and culture. It occurs in a “community of
practice” organized around certain beliefs, behaviors, and knowledge.
Harvard psychologist Howard Gardner’s theory of multiple intelligences counters the view of
intelligence as a single trait or set of traits that some people have more of or less than compared to others.
Learning can be facilitated by activities that allow children to learn in harmony with their own unique
minds.

Objectives of the Study

The objectives of the study are the following:

1. Determine the profile of the respondents in terms of their previous grades in Earth Science,
learning styles and attitude towards Science.
2. Determine the performance and significant difference between the pre-test and post test of the
respondents’ after being exposed to localization and contextualization of science activities.
3. Determine the relationship between the respondents’ profile and Science performance after
being exposed to localization and contextualization approach in teaching Earth Science 9.

Figure 2 shows the research paradigm of the study with the Input -Process -Output model. The
input consists of the learner profile which includes learners’ previous grades in Earth Science (Grades 7
and 8), learners’ attitude towards Science and their learning styles. The different competencies or skills to
be mastered under the topics Volcanoes, Climate and Constellations are also included.
In terms of the process, the assessment instruments in terms of learning styles and learning
attitudes were administered to the respondents. After being administered, pretest was given to the
respondents to determine their prior or background learning about the topics to be discussed. The
activities given were validated before the implementation of the localized or contextualized approach to
learning in enhancing their performance. The validated activities were used during the teaching- learning
process within the duration of the third grading period. After which, posttest was given to assess their
learning throughout the grading period.
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The output of the study enhanced learners’ performance in Science 9 as based from their grade
for the third grading period, result of the post test, the summative test given to them for every topic
discussed and their performance in the different activities

INPUT PROCESS OUTPUT

I. Learners’ Profile A. Administration of the


Assessment
A. Learners’ Previous Instrument
Grades in Earth in terms of
Science (Grades 7 & a.1 Leaners
Grade 8) Attitude Towards
B .Learners’ Attitude Science Enhanced Learners’
Towards Science a.2. Learning Style
C. Learning Style of Inventory Performance
Respondents B. Validated Science
II. Competencies in Activities in
Science 9 under the Contextualized and
following Topics: Localized Science 9
a. Volcanoes and C. Administration of
the Interior of the Pretest
Earth D. Teaching Learning
b. Climate Process
c. Constellations E. Administration of
Posttest
F. Analysis of the
Result

Fig. 2. Paradigm of the Study


Methodology

The respondents of the study involved the Grade 9 learners in the Capas Integrated School,
currently enrolled for the school year 2014 – 2015. There were 37 learners in one section. The method
used in this study was the one-shot pretest-posttest experimental research design since there was only one
section of respondents available for the research. In terms of the respondents’ profile in attitude towards
Science, it was adopted from Open Educational Resources(OER). It comprises of 30 positive and
negative attitudes in which the respondents will describe their attitude towards Science as to Very
Favorable (VF), Favorable (F), Indiffirent (I), Unfavorable (U) and Very Unfaborable (VUF).
In terms of the learning style of the respondents, three different learning styles were adopted
having the AVK model (Auditory, Visual and Kinesthetic/Tactile). These are learning styles from
Homolulu Community College, Abiators’ Online Learning Styles Inventory Test and Dunn and Dunn
Learning Style Inventory Test. The Learning Style inventory test contains 24 items divided into 3
learning styles. The respondent’s highest score from the inventory will be their chosen learning
preference.
A test instrument was constructed to determine the performance of the respondents. The pre-test
was given to the learners prior to the teaching learning process in which the result of the pretest was used
as the baseline in determining if there was a positive increase in terms of the competencies learned as well
as in terms of their performance in Earth Science. The test instrument and Science activities underwent
validations validated by five competent and reliable teachers. Kuder Richardson Formula 20 was used
to determine reliability of the test instrument and computed for its index of difficulty to indicate the level
of appropriateness of the test questions. The DepEd Evaluation Rating Sheet for Print Supplementary
Materials was adopted to validate the Science 9 activities.
After the administration of the validated contextualized and localized Science activities, a
posttest was given with the same content as the pretest. Formative tests were given in every lesson
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undertaken which are recorded, but not graded, to determine the number of learners who did not master
the lesson. On the other hand, summative test, were given to the learners which were recorded and
graded which was given every unit or chapter discussed. This serves as an additional factor to consider
in determining their performance during the duration of the research and their grade for the third quarter
after being exposed to the new approach to learning which was the contextualization and localization
approach to science activities.
Their scores along the different activities was graded using prepared rubrics and their scores in
the pre – test – post test, summative and third grading grade results will be interpreted using the DepEd
proficiency descriptive rating:
Score Range Descriptive Rating
90 % and above Advanced (A)
85% - 89% Proficient (P)
80% - 84% Approaching Proficiency (AP)
75% - 79% Developing (D)
74% and below Beginning (B)
The data gathered was processed and analysed for a systematic presentation using dummy tables,
frequency counts, and percentages.
Moreover, t – test was used to determine the significant difference between the performance of
the respondents’ along pretest and posttest. Pearson r correlation was used to determine the relationship
between the profile of the respondents and their science performance using Statistical Package for Social
Sciences (SPSS) software at 0.05 level of significance.

Results and Discussions

This study determined the performance of the Grade 9 learners of Capas Integrated School using
Localization and Contextualization of science activities in enhancing their performance and participation
in Earth Science for the third grading period of school year 2014-2015.
Specifically, it determined the following: profile of the learners as to previous grades in Earth
Science (Grades 7 and 8), attitude towards Science and learning styles. It also determined the
performance of the learners after being exposed to localization and contextualization approach to
learning; significant difference between the learners’ pre-test and posttest scores and the relationship
between the learner profile and their academic performance in Science.
The study employed one–shot pretest-posttest experimental research design since there was only
one section of respondents involved in the study. The respondents were the 37 Grade 9 learners of
Capas Integrated School, barangay Capas, Agoo, La Union for the school year 2014-2015. The learners’
previous grades in Earth Science were taken from the Form 137 from their respective adviser. The
learners took the test in determining their attitude towards Science and learning style inventory taken
from three different inventories having visual, auditory and tactile/kinesthetic preference of learning.
A pretest-posttest was given to the respondents to assess their performance. The test instrument
and activities in Science incorporating localization and contextualization used were validated by five
experts in science from Don Mariano Marcos Memorial State University, South La Union Campus, Agoo,
La Union. The pretest-posttest was subjected to reliability test using Kuder Richardson Formula 20.
Index of difficulty was also served to amend the test points. Moreover, their Earth Science grade for the
third quarter was also applied to find out whether there was a positive gain in their performance towards
the study. The grade of the learners for the third quarter was composed of the obtained scores in
summative tests, activities and posttest. Outputs and participations were graded using rubrics. The data
gathered were treated using frequency, percentage, mean, standard deviation, Pearson correlation and t-
test. SPSS software was used to determine the relationship between the profile and performance as well
as the difference between the pretest and posttest.
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The following are the salient findings of this study:

1. The profile of the respondents showed that the majority of the respondents or 35 percent obtained a
proficiency level of “developing” with a grade ranging from 75 – 79 in both grade levels. Very few or 8
percent of the respondents had a proficiency level of “advanced” and nearly the same as regard to the
mean of the two grade level grades with a verbal description of “approaching proficiency”.
As for the learners’ attitude towards Science, majority of the respondents rated themselves to
have a “favorable” attitude with 59. 46 percent and few of them had an “indifferent” attitude towards
Science. Their responses towards the inventory were homogenous because of its very low value of
standard deviation which is 0.2242.
As to the learners’ learning style, 41 percent or 15 learners were categorized as tactile learners
while almost the same numbers of respondents were audio and visual learners having 12 or 32 percent
and 10 or 27percent, respectively.
2. As for their performance, 49 percent or 18 of the respondents obtained a “proficient” level and
2 or 5 percent of the class received a “developing” proficiency level. The overall performance of the
learners showed a “proficient” level with a mean of 86.67. The mean grade was kept from the scores
read in their summative tests, Science activities along volcanoes, climate and constellations and posttests.
3. There is a significant difference in the pre-test and posttest scores of the respondents which are
significant at 0.05. It showed that the mean score along post test is greater than the mean score generated
from the pretest which are 14 or equivalent grade of 68 and 30 or equivalent grade of 87.20 respectively.
4. The previous grade of the learners in Earth Science (Grades 7 and 8) showed a substantial
relationship, along their performance because both the grade levels obtained a p-value of 0.000 which is
lower than the 0.01 level of significance. On the other hand, the Pearson r-value of grade 7 and grade 8
grades, which are 0.874 and 0.867 respectively, showed a strong positive correlation along with the
performance of the learners in Earth Science.
The attitude of the learners towards Science obtained a p-value of 0.953 and r value of 0.010
which is considered as not significant and weak positive correlation to the performance of the learners.
The mean value of 0.256 of the learning styles of the learners which are visual, auditory and
kinesthetic proves to be not significant. On the other hand, the visual and auditory learning styles were
considered not significant because they have a p- value of 0.342 and 0.180 respectively which is higher
than the significance level.
Moreover, the tactile learning style with a p- value of 0.019 was evaluated to be significant with their
Science performance.
5. Localization and contextualization approach of Science activities was proven to be effective in
enhancing the performance of Grade 9 learners and showed a positive effect as regard to the participation,
motivation and attitude towards the lessons.

Conclusions
The following conclusions are drawn based from the findings:

1. Majority of the respondents fall under “developing” proficiency level based from their previous
grades in Earth Science. They had “favorable” attitude towards Science and most of them are
tactile learners.
2. There is an improvement in the performance of the learners in Earth Science after being exposed
to localization and contextualization of science activities as described to have a “proficient” level.
3. There is a significant difference in the performance of the respondents in the pre-test and posttest
scores.
4. There is a significant relationship between the previous grades of the learners in Earth Science
and their performance. However, no significant relationship exists between the attitude towards
Science and learning styles of the learners. The performance of the learners is independent and
cannot be predicted based from their styles and attitude.
5. Localization and contextualization approach to learning is an enhancement, empowered and
innovative strategy in teaching science.
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Recommendations

In the light of the findings and conclusions of this research, the following recommendations are
hereby presented:
1. Science teachers should try to attain advanced and proficient in Earth Science and sustain
very favorable attitude of learners towards Science through differentiated instruction, diverse
strategies and student-centered approach. Consequently, this becomes a culture of unending
learning regardless of their learning preference and to obtain a good standing in their
performance in Science.
2. Science teachers must employ localization and contextualization approach in learning
Science. The needed skills or competency-based outcome is a must for the learners to become
adept in their chosen careers as prescribed by the K to 12 programs. They must embrace and
commit their time to be creative, forward-looking, and adept in using available resources
inside the community and construct or integrate real life experiences of the learners to
connect the concepts to issues and concerns that necessitate to be spoken.
3. Educators in any field should try to apply or integrate localization and contextualization of
learning materials in teaching any subject because it shows a positive effect in the
performance of the learners’ and it is an effective means of imparting lifelong learning
outcomes
4. Science teachers should create learning strategies that will cater to different learning abilities
to improve their performance.
5. Localization and contextualization approach in teaching Science can be proposed to enhance
the Science performance of the learners and further study on localization and
contextualization approach to learning to test the effectiveness using a bigger sample or
different Grade level to verify the result of this study.
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