An attempt has been made in this paper to study the attitude of high school students towards role play as an instructional intervention. Experimental method has been used in the present investigation. Purposive sampling technique has been used in the selection of the sample of 80 students studying in St. Vincent Matric Hr Sec School, Chennai. The finding of the study show that majority of the students are having neutral attitude towards role play. It is found that there is no significant between the (i) gender and (ii) students having interest in science and not having interest in science in their attitude towards role play. Further it is noted that there is a positive moderate correlation between the attitude towards role play and gain score.
Keywords: Attitude towards role play, High School Students.
Role-play in science is a product of the use of drama, games and simulations. It involves children in physical and intellectual activity, it has a potential to elucidate scientific concepts. The theory behind the use of role-play in science teaching is that learning is active, experiential and child-centered. Children are encouraged to be physically and intellectually involved in their lessons and allow them to express themselves in a scientific context and develop an understanding of difficult concepts, (Taylor 1987). The key to role-play, and the reason why role-play can help to make science relevant to many children, is that it is based upon play. It gives science teachers another option that can be used to link their work with the more feeling, creative side of education and as a method of increasing the manipulation of factual material by children (Watson, 1985). It gives children a feeling of ownership of their education (Danby and Upitis, 1988). It can help children across the full spectrum of educational needs to interpret their place in the world (Cayton, 1989). Many role-plays are based upon analogy, which helps children to conceptualise and greatly increases learning (Lawson, 1993).
REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE
From the studies related to role play as an instructional intervention Van Ments, (1983) identified three general advantages to role-playing activities: they are positive and safe in dealing with attitudes and feelings, they provide a safe venue for expressing personal and sometimes unpopular attitudes and opinions, and role-playing is highly motivating as the majority of students enjoy these types of activities and become more inspired learners.
McDaniel, (2000) identified four basic elements that are essential for the success of any role-playing activity. The first element is that the activity builds on knowledge the students already possess about a particular historical context. A teacher cannot expect students to role-play about something they have no prior knowledge of. The second element is to design the roles yourself to maximize student involvement and student conflict. Having conflicting perspectives is a must. The third element is to set up a specific situation. Do not let the students go without giving them a focal point for debate. The last element is the instructor’s limited involvement and willingness to be flexible. The instructor needs to guide the students along, but not overbear the conversation and let the students take their own path to understanding.
OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
- To find out the level of attitude towards role play of the experimental group students.
- To find out whether boys and girls students of the experimental group differ significantly in their attitude towards role play.
- To find out whether students having interest in science and not having interest in science differ significantly in their attitude towards role play.
- To find out the relationship between the attitude towards role play and gain score of the experimental group students.
HYPOTHESES OF THE STUDY
- The level of attitude towards role play of the experimental group students is low.
- There is no significant difference in attitude between the boys and girls students of the experimental group towards role play.
- There is no significant difference between students having interest in science and not having interest in science in their attitude towards role play.
- There is no relationship between the attitude towards role play and gain score of the experimental group students.
Experimental method was used in the present study. The study adapts pre-test, post-test equivalent group design.
Sample of the Study:
Purposive sampling technique was used for the selection of the sample. Out of a sample of 80 students two groups were divided namely experimental and control groups with 40 students in each group. The experimental group was engaged by the investigator and the control group was engaged by their science teacher.
Procedure of the Study:
The students were divided into five groups with eight members in each group in order to provide one sub unit for each group. One student from each group was chosen as the leader. The leader guides the group in maintaining the time limit, assigning the roles to the members of the group, ensure cooperation among team members, and leads the group in the presentation of role play. The topic was divided into five sub units. Preparation of soil and sowing, Adding manure and fertilizers, Types of irrigation and protection from weeds, Harvesting and Storage and marketing.
Each group was given one sub unit. The investigator gave a short briefing to each group on the sub topic that they have to enact, the dialogues were discussed with the students in the group, the role each individual have to play, the date and time for each groups were allotted, student preparation of the activity was supervised by the investigator.
Attitude scale towards role play was prepared and validated by the investigator (2012). For the study Likert type of attitude scale was constructed and used. The scale consists of 10 items with the lowest of 10 and the highest score of 50.
Statistical Techniques Used:
The investigator used descriptive, differential and correlation analysis in this investigation.
Table 1. Level of Attitude towards Role Play of the Experimental Group Students
|Attitude towards Role Play||Mean + SD||42.50 + 3.35||46 and above||Favourable||8(20%)|
|In-between Scores||38 to 45||Neutral||28(70%)|
|Mean – SD||42.50 – 3.35||39 and below||Unfavourable||4(10%)|
From Table 1 it is inferred that the majority of the experimental group students 28(70%) are having neutral attitude towards role play, while 4(10%) are having unfavourable attitude and 8(20%) are having favourable attitude towards role play.
Table 2. Comparison of the Attitude towards Role Play of the Experimental Group with respect to Gender
|S.No.||Attitude||Gender||Mean||SD||t||Level of significance (0.05)|
|1||Role Play||Boys||42.10||3.81||0.751||Not Significant|
From Table 2 it is inferred that the‘t’ value (0.751) is lesser than the critical value 2. 02 at 0.05 level of significance. This implies that there is no difference between boys and girls with respect to their attitude towards role play. Hence the framed null hypothesis is accepted.
Table 3. Comparison of the Attitude towards Role Play of the Experimental Group with respect to Interest in Science
|S.No.||Attitude||Interest in Science||Mean||SD||t||Level of significance (0.05)|
|1||Role Play||Having interest in science||42.63||2.98||0.349||Not significant|
|Not having interest in science||42.23||4.15|
From Table 3 it is inferred that the ‘t’ value (0.349) is lesser than the critical value 2. 02 at 0.05 level of significance. This implies that there is no difference between students having interest in science and students not having interest in science with respect to their attitude towards role play. Hence the framed null hypothesis is accepted.
Table 4. Correlation between Attitude towards Role Play and Gain Score
|Score||Attitude towards intervention||‘r’ value||Level of significance at (0.01)|
|Gain score||Role play||0.581||Significant|
From Table 5 it is inferred that the ‘r’ value (0.581) is significant at (0.01) level. This implies that there is a significant, positive and moderate relationship between attitude towards role play and gain score. Hence the null hypothesis is rejected.
FINDINGS OF THE STUDY
- Majority of the students had neutral attitude towards role play.
- Both the boys and girls showed equal enthusiasm towards role play.
- The involvement of both the categories of students who had interest in science as well as students not having interest in science were the same in their attitude towards role play.
- There was positive moderate relationship between improvement in the gain score of the students and their attitude towards role play.
The present study reveals that there exists relationship between improvement in the gain score and the attitude towards role play. Role play can increase the learning motivation; it actively and consciously involves the student in activities, and determines the teacher to be aware of the temper, learning style and intellectual level of the students. Role playing is interesting, it’s fun and causes students to interact. Through this method students develop skills and abilities like responsibility and leadership in learning, peer learning/teaching, group work, confidence and creative problem solving that would be difficult to develop when using traditional teaching techniques.
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 Ph.D Research Scholar, Department of Education, Annamalai University.
 Professor, Department of Education, Annamalai University.