The purpose of this study is to investigate the understanding, nature and practices that comprise basic science teachers’ PCK. In this study the research participants demonstrated their PCK by responding to questionnaire, teaching in the classroom and discussion during an interview section. The researcher determined the extent and nature of their PCK in relation to the Magnusson et al (1999) model. The findings revealed that the 52 basic science teachers who took part in the quantitative study exhibited the five components of PCK in this study. 66.7% of teachers whose classroom teaching were observed exhibited adequate PCK, while 33.3% exhibited inadequate PCK. Neither gender, qualification nor years of teaching experience was found to enhance basic science teachers’ PCK . Information obtained from the interview revealed that basic science teachers’ had clear views about the nature and purpose of teaching science, but the lack of laboratory, science equipment and facilities, over population of students as well as inadequate science teachers and poor teaching and learning environment in their schools hindered teachers’ ability to develop and exhibit adequate PCK in their classroom teaching. Consequently, it was recommended that teachers should endeavor to reflect on their teaching methods, while the various teacher education programmes should place emphasis on teaching teachers how to develop their PCK for teaching effectiveness. In addition, laboratories, science equipment and facilities as well as more qualified science teachers should be provided in schools, while efforts should be made by government to improve the teaching and learning environment in schools.
Keywords: PCK, PCK, Basic science, Teaching and Learning.