Make your own free website on
Multigrade material development
Multigrade teaching guide for Zambian teachers.


Guide for organizing a Multigrade Teaching Workshop in your province,district,zone or school.
What is multigrade teaching ?
Classroom management
Multigrade material development
Tips for the multigrade teacher
Teaching in the multigrade classroom
Survey to assess the impact of a multigrade teaching workshop
Demonstration lesson plan for a multigrade lesson on the subject staggering option
Lesson plans integrated per grade.You can put yourself the lessons in the multigrade way.
More sample lesson preparations. Have a good time.
Lesson preparation book made by students.

A.Multigrade teaching is often associated with schools in remote and difficult contexts dealing with rural and other disadvantaged persons, with the result that there are few resources available, given the poverty of the region in which this type of teaching is found. Multigrade teachers have, therefore, to work in a considerably negative context in terms of materials support.

The provision of teaching-learning materials is constrained by limited financial resources.

Low-cost teaching learning materials are materials which have the following characteristics/qualities:

a.         The materials can be made by teachers, pupils or members of the community.

b.     The materials supplied can be put to effective use by the teachers and pupils in the classroom and do not incur extra costs.

c.      The processes in the production of the materials are simple and    inexpensive.

d.     The production of the materials is not time consuming.

e.      The materials are freely and easily available from the local environment.

f.       These materials can be:

-         plants ( bambou, leaves, etc.)

-         animal ( Shell, skin, bones, etc.)

-         mineral ( limestone,charcoal,etc)

-         Industrial waste : fuses, used batteries.

-         Domestic waste : tin cans, milk or chibuku boxes, bicycle parts

Because of this, the main consideration is not the low-cost factor of the materials, but factors like ease of availability, ease of production .



Examples of Low-cost Teaching Learning Material



        Name of the material : Educational TV ( ETV)

        Subject : Mathematics grade 4

        Topic  :  fractions

        Aim : to enable pupils to  ^ recognize different fractions forms

                                               ^ name fractions

                                               ^ write fractions


   Materials    biscuits tins, boxes , paper, tape.



a.      The centre part of the biscuit tin is cut off and pieces of glass are fixed to act as a TV screen.

b.     Nails, sticks, are fixed to both ends of the tin to hold in place of the lever.

c.      A series of pictures is rolled on the lever.

d.     When the lever is turned the picture comes out on the TV screen.

e.         The holder and an aerial is fixed to the top part of the biscuit.



        Name of the material :  Magic Tree;

        Subject : Language

        Grade 1

        Material, tree branch, pot, string and (coloured )bulb

        Procedure:   a. Firstly put the branches in the pot.

                          b. Certain syllables according to the topic taught are written on the bulbs.

                          c. Each bulb is hung on the branches by using strings.

Educational use: a.  Teacher mentions a word and choose the right syllable to form the correct word.

b.        The process continues and the teacher involve pupils using more lengthy words.


A.   Local topics



a.     Local topics taught at primary schools are very meaningful as well as beneficial:


        It makes the curriculum more comprehensive and relevant.

        If local topics are taught as primary schools, it will make the schools closer to the communities, serving the socio- economic development of the locality.

          If local topics are well developed and suited to primary school children, it will create more interest for the children. They will have a chance to study topics relating to their daily lives. This will connect them more closely with their communities, their classes and schools.


b.    The local topics must be:







c.     Checklist for developing local topics:


        Geographical features : geography , climate

        Flora   :  natural plants and trees/ plants grown by people

        Fauna  :  wild animals, tame animals

        Transportation and construction:  transportation system, construction works, traditional architecture, construction materials.

        Population :  number, features, distribution.

        Cultural activities of different (ethnic) groups, festivals, fairs, games, traditions and costumes, traditional musical instruments, traditional songs and dances.

        Folk songs, traditional songs, idioms, proverbs,sayings

        Typical art works, literature works.

        Traditional costumes.

        Local history: local cultural personalities, historical characters, major historical events of the locality.

        Production: traditional handicraft trades and local products, tools of local production and livelihood.

          Environment and sanitation: protection of forest and natural resources, protection and improvement of water sources.


d.    Planning a topic- eight teaching steps



Step 1 : choose the topic.

Step 2 : choose resources.

             Which resources suit this topic best ?

Step 3 : finding out what the students already know.       

              What do the students already know about this topic ?

              What else about the topic are they interested in finding out ?

              How will the children tell me what they know ?

Step 4 : Write understandings about the topic.

              What do we want the children to learn about ?

Step 5 : Introduce the new resources that will help the children learn about the topic.

Step 6 : Develop the topic through the different curriculum areas. (e.g. mathematics, language, art)

Step 7 : Allow the learners to share what they have learnt about the topic.

Step8 : Assess the students learning. Evaluate the teaching strategies.





e.     Sample topic for trees


Topic : understanding for trees


        Trees are the most important plants on earth because they contribute to the conditions, which support life.

        Trees provide many types of living places and food for animals.

        People have used trees and their products for many different purposes.

        Different trees are suited to different habitats.

        The roots of trees help to hold the soil together and prevent erosion.

Make a chart of one tree.







Parts of the tree


Describe Features.


Have a talk on the topic understanding for trees.

The children draw, colour tree


Observing in the school garden.

All the children look at the same tree.


Have a talk on the topic understanding for trees.

The children draw, colour trees.

They name the parts of the tree








Observing in the school garden.

All the children look at the same



Have a talk on the topic understanding for trees.

The children draw, colour trees.

They name the parts of the tree.

Describe these features.








Working in groups and each group will choose a different tree.

Afterwards the results will be compared in the classroom


Have a talk on the topic understanding for trees.

The children draw, colour trees.

They name the parts of the tree.

Describe these features.








Working in groups and each group will choose a different tree.

Afterwards the results will be compared  in the classroom



Comparing the trees you and your partner chose with those of other learners.

At the end you will have an inventory of the trees in the school garden.




Name of the tree

Pine tree

Green dragon cactus.

Where it grows

Hill, roadside, forest

Ground, sand


Pin shaped, long,sharp points

Stem looks like a leaf


Straight, many branches at top

Trunk is itself the leaves;


Rough, easy to peel, peels sometimes, brown colour.

Thick, smooth











Brown colour, elliptical, thorny skin with overlapping pieces

Red colour, elliptical, average weight is 1 kg.


Like rice

Like black sesame seeds.

Special features

Planted for liquid, fruit and wood.

Flower blossom at night.

Animals living

Birds, insects, ants, spiders, monkey

Ants, insects, butterflies.


f.       Sample lesson on local trees

The red sugar cane

Grade 3-4


        Objectives and requirements:


1.      By observing the red sugar cane, learners know the appearance characteristics of the red sugar cane ( from simple to detail depending on the grade group).

2.         Students know the benefits of sugar cane to animals and human.







1.      Three sugar canes.

2.      One picture-illustrating animals using sugar cane.

3.      Work sheet for each grade group.

4.      Charts.

5.         Game cards.


        Class activities:


1.      Whole class activities ( 4 minutes): teacher introduces the new lesson.

2.      Group activities ( 10 minutes): The teacher divides the class into groups by level - Guide learners to observe 3 sugar canes in 3 groups. Students discuss in group- write the outputs of observation on the work sheets .Students exchange work sheets between groups to check the outputs of discussion themselves.

3.      Whole class activities ( 6 minutes)

4.         Teacher checks the outputs of discussion and make charts.



Characteristics of the red sugar cane



Long, round, divided into sections, having nodes and roots.


Smooth, soft.



Around the sections of the trunk and base.


White colour



Long, gren, with rib in the middle and down.


Teacher asks children to name parts of the sugar cane in local language.






5.     Group activities ( 10 minutes)


        Discussion based on teacher's questions in mixed level group.

                 -What animals use sugar cane ?

-         What do people use sugar cane for ?


        Pupils exchange work sheets between groups to cross-check


6.      Whole class activities ( 10 minutes):


        Teacher hangs pictures of sugar cane and animals using sugar cane.

        Students observe and check the output themselves.

        Teacher checks the outputs of discussion and fill in charts.

        Teacher reviews the lesson by using a piece of card-board to hide part by part of the picture and asks students to recall what they have observed.

        Teacher guides the pupils to play the sticking game ( sticking the word cards to the picture charts).

Enter supporting content here