n Indilinga African Journal of Indigenous Knowledge Systems - The making of clay pots and its relevance to school science : reclaiming knowledge in the cultural practice of Ovawambo people in Namibia

Volume 18 Number 1
  • ISSN : 1683-0296


The article is based on a study that investigated the practice of making clay pots by the Ovawambo people and its relevance to school science. The study was conducted as a qualitative case study to get an in-depth understanding of this indigenous cultural practice. Data sets were generated using semi-structured interviews conducted with an experienced community elder in the making of clay pots and an experienced science teacher. Thereafter, a focus group interview was conducted with learners. The findings of the study revealed that making clay pots is still an important and respected practice in Ovawambo culture. Ovawambo people keep their cultural heritage by instilling the knowledge and skills of making clay pots in young girls to ensure that it is passed on from generation to generation. The other finding of the study is that the young generation has an interest and willingness to participate in the practice of making clay pots. It was also found, that making clay pots is relevant to the teaching and learning of school science. The study thus recommends that curricula in Basic Education be transformed in re-visioning Namibian education to take into account Namibian indigenous cultural knowledge, such as the making of clay pots.

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