Testing generative thinking among Swazi children
This study tested and compared the generative thinking of second graders (7-8-year olds) and fifth graders (10-11-year olds) as a means to assess how generative thinking develops among children. Results from this study were compared with results obtained by Mushoriwa (2003) in a similar study in Zimbabwe in order to establish if the development of generative thinking follows a similar pattern in different environments. Data were sourced from 40 second-graders and 40 fifth graders randomly selected from primary schools in Manzini region. The survey research design was used, with interviews employed to collect the data. Crosstabs and a two-sample t-test were used to analyse the data. The study found no significant differences in generative thinking between second and fifth graders in the Swazi sample. In the comparative analyses, while significant differences in eye placements were observed between second grade pupils in Swaziland and second grade pupils in Zimbabwe, no significant differences in eye placements were observed between fifth grade pupils in Swaziland and fifth grade pupils in Zimbabwe. As for reasons/explanations for eye placements, significant differences between Swazi and Zimbabwean children were noted at both second grade and fifth grade levels. The study recommended the use by teachers, of pedagogy that is promotive of generative thinking as well as the need for further research in the area focusing on environmental factors influencing the nature and developmental pattern of generative thinking.
KEY WORDS: Generative thinking, Developmental patterns, Hypothetical third eye, Environmental factors.