The 2002 revised curriculum for Kiswahili for secondary school education in Kenya incorporated content on poetry. Students have continually performed poor in Kiswahili paper 102/3 in Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) with the poetry section being the most failed. The purpose of the study was to investigate the influence of instructional methodology on students’ performance in poetry in Kiswahili in Kenyan secondary schools, taking a case of Lugari Sub-County. The objective of this paper is to present and discuss the research findings on the methods and teaching resources used by teachers of Kiswahili in teaching poetry. The study was based on Dale’s cone of experience theory which states that learners retain more information by what they ‘’do’’ as opposed to what they ‘’hear’’, ‘’read’’ or ‘’observe.’’ The study adopted a survey research design. It targeted secondary schools in Lugari Sub-County, Kakamega County in Kenya. The researcher used stratified sampling to place schools into three strata; four schools per strata were sampled making a total of twelve schools with twelve teachers of Kiswahili from the sampled schools. Purposive sampling was used to sample Form Three students. Data were collected using two sets of questionnaires, observation checklist, and document analysis. Descriptive statistics were used to analyse the obtained data and findings placed under themes. It was found that oral questioning and lecture methods dominated poetry in Kiswahili lessons. Therefore, the research recommends that teachers of Kiswahili should explore a variety of interactive teaching methods to enhance students’ mastery of content.
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