Even though it is almost a decade of grappling and interacting with, firstly curriculum 2005 (C2005) followed by a second revised and supposedly a more user friendly National Curriculum Statement (NCS). One of the key and central concepts of these two Outcome based education (OBE) curricula remains the issue of integration. The NCS document for Mathematics speak about short term integration and give examples of LA‟s ( Learning Areas)that can be integrated. Interestingly, the NCS document is silent on LA‟s that can be integrated with Mathematics, but it does suggest any other combinations of integrated LA‟s are combinable. Hence, I am going to explore the integration of EMS with Mathematics. The Policy also mentions the integration of concepts or themes between Learning Areas.
“The Learning Area content, concepts or themes are NOT the starting point when planning integration.
However, they are important vehicles for achieving the outcomes and are to be considered as part of planning” (SA. DoE, RNCS Mathematics Policy document, 2003 pp.47)
The notion of integration mentioned in the quotation above guides me to explore the mathematical concepts and EMS (economic management science) concepts that I want to find in EMS and explore how it is implemented during teaching and planning to integrate with mathematics. The Mathematical Policy also mentions that it is an implication for planning to consider how well teachers know other learning areas in order to integrate and assess effectively. Therefore teachers are required to know the Learning Areas that they are integrating with. My study is therefore investigating the understanding and knowledge of teachers about the Learning Areas they teach and the Learning Areas that they integrate with.
Since we, the teachers and the implementers of the curriculum has been interacting with the notion of integration in and across Learning Areas (subjects) for almost a decade, it is tacit that we are required to have a fair degree of understanding what it means to integrate within Learning Areas (LA‟s) and across Learning Areas and that we interact with policy documents and research materials. The latter is also what the policy documents require from teachers. Learning Areas and the pedagogy are required to prepare the learners in order to contribute effectively to uplift the economic status of the country and teachers are given the task to ensure that these goals are clearly set out and met by learners.
Prevein Marnewicke: Forms and meanings of Integration. A case study towards completion
of a Master of Education degree.