In order to answer the above objectives, two null hypotheses were tested, namely: (a) there is no significant difference (P [less than or equal to] 0.05) in the learning achievement between pupils with home-based SAEPs and pupils with school garden-based SAEPs; and (b) there is no significant difference (P [less than or equal to] 0.05) in the attitudes of parents with home gardening children and of parents whose children had gardens at school.
A posttest written exam for pupils and posttest questionnaires were administered to the pupils and parents at the end of SAEPs activities.
However, the study design did not envisage the long-term learning impacts of SAEPs beyond the home gardens.
The respondents were also asked to report whether or not they learned from the SAEPs approach.
The results in Table 1 show that SAEPs activities provided opportunities for self-learning as pupils worked on their own projects.
The results in Table 2 show that acquisition of knowledge and skills for vegetable growing was the most important benefit of pupils' participation in SAEPs gardening activities.
The results in Figure 3 show the specific skills reported before and after introduction of SAEPs. The results show that the number of pupils reporting specific gardening skills increased after SAEPs than they did before.
This confirms that the key feature in using SAEPs is supervision (Dyer & Williams, 1997; Newcomb et al.
However, the qualitative findings from the participatory evaluation of SAEPs in FGDs with members of Agricultural Advisory Committees at each school revealed that home gardens had a number of additional benefits.
In particular the findings showed that the SAEPs method enhanced pupils' learning achievement and learning transfer from school to pupils' home farms.
However, agriculture teachers should be given specialized training on the SAEPs method and incentives in order for them to effectively advise pupils on a one-on-one basis during home visits.