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PROBLEMS MILITATING AGAINST EFFECTIVE TEACHING AND LEARNING OF GEOGRAPHY IN SENIOR SECONDARY SCHOOLS. A CASE STUDY OF IKA SOUTH LGA OF DELTA STATE
1.1 Background of the study
Geography (from Greek γεωγραφία, geographia, lit. “earth description”) is a field of science dedicated to the study of the lands, the features, the inhabitants, and the phenomena of the Earth. A literal translation would be “to describe or write about the Earth”. The first person to use the word “geography” was Eratosthenes (276–194 BC). Four historical traditions in geographical research are spatial analysis of the natural and the human phenomena (geography as the study of distribution), area studies (places and regions), study of the man-land relationship, and research in the Earth sciences. Nonetheless, modern geography is an all-encompassing discipline that foremost seeks to understand the Earth and all of its human and natural complexities – not merely where objects are, but how they have changed and come to be. Geography has been called “the world discipline” and “the bridge between the human and the physical science”. Geography is divided into two main branches: human geography and physical geography.
Geography is the science of place and space. Geographers ask where things are located on the surface of the earth, why they are located where they are, how places differ from one another, and how people interact with the environment. As the study of the earth’s landscapes, peoples, places and environments. It is, quite simply, about the world in which we live. Geography is unique in bridging the social sciences (human geography) with the natural sciences (physical geography). Because thinking about space and place give a variety of topics such as economics, health, climate, plants and animals, geography is highly interdisciplinary. It is also a very appropriate perspective to consider complex issues such as sustainable development, that involve economic, social, and environmental dimensions at the same time. Combined with the My Community, Our Earth’s fun, inquiry-driven, hands-on, project-based approach, you can use geographic learning for sustainable development to make a difference in your own community and for our earth.
The planet earth so far is the only dwelling place for man among the other eight planets. Numerous activities and interactions have some causes and effects. To understand these causes and effects, one has to understand his environment. Therefore, a general knowledge of what geography is all about and its importance to the society should be understood. The importance of geography has been clearly shown in the senior secondary school geography curriculum via:
• To understand the concept of differential character a spatial relationship of the surface features of the earth
• To understand the concept of man-environment relations to examine the life of man within his physical and cultural environment and to explain their interactions
• To appreciate and develop a sense of responsibility towards one’s own society and intelligent interest in the formation of rational goals and policies especially as they influence the different resources and regions of the areas
• To develop sympathetic understanding of the people of other lands based on the recognition and they may have different assemblies of resources, different goals and different problems from the people of their area
• To organize and formulate principles according to acquired geographic concepts which they use to analyze and interpret spatial problems in their environment
• To develop skills and techniques for accurate orderly and objective geographical investigation to be carried out both in the classroom and in the immediate environment. Hence most countries have already recognized the dependence of their social, cultural, environmental development on their geographical studies much as one could therefore, normally expect decades after independent that the foundation for geography should have been well laid in Nigeria but the truth is that the foundation not only remains rickety but infact crumbling (Afolabi, 1978) geography is relegated to the background while history, social studies, government are being projected in the primary, junior and secondary schools of the current 6-3-3-4 educational system
Secondary education has been recognized as playing very crucial roles in providing suitable preparation for further education (Cuttance, 1980). The state of formal education at secondary school level is a very important determinant of the quality and quantity of intake into tertiary level of education. On the same vein, the development of geographic studies in Nigeria is itself a function of the type of geographic teaching going on in the various schools. Eden (1982) confirms this in his research, that the poor quality of geography education in Nigeria is itself a function of the type of geographic education teaching going on in the various schools. His research recalls that the poor quality of geography in Nigeria might become a caricature of the real thing especially in the new and less established schools which he discovered were in very bad condition for effective meaningful geographic teaching.
1.2 Problem of the study
That differences exists in the teaching and learning of geography in urban areas has raised dust in several quarters in most recent times. It is in this light that the research will be carried out to examine the differences in teaching and learning of geography in urban and rural areas with a view to ascertaining the causes of the differences. As at present, there is poor student enrolment in the basic geography courses in the institutions of higher learning. This is due to problems associated with geography teaching in the various secondary schools such as field studies, text books and poor teaching methods among others. These problems seem to be serious in the various rural schools for example while it is not uncommon to find in some of the urban secondary schools an over concentration of qualified graduate teachers, students of the same subject in rural schools are compelled to make do with either unqualified teachers or none at all. It is generally believed to day that students in urban schools perform better than rural counterparts in school certificate examinations. Is the assumption then true that differences in opportunities offered for the teaching and learning of geography in both urban and rural environment affect students’ performance? What are some of these problems and how are they likely to be immunized if not eliminated? These and other related issues constitute the focus of the problems that are to be investigated. Many students are performing poorly year after year in their examinations in Ika south LGA of Delta state and this situation is growing worse. This in turn opens their door to poor life thereafter. This poor performance may be brought by non-innovative teachers who may not want to use the instructional materials in the right way. Unqualified teachers may also bring this problem. In this case it calls for a research to be carried out in this zone to find out exactly what the problem is.
1.3 Objectives of the study
1. To ascertain whether school locations affect School Certificate Geography achievement.
2. To establish whether school location affects quality and quantity of geography teachers in secondary schools.
3. To justify the assertion that in competency among geography teachers constitute a barrier to the teaching and learning of geography in government secondary school.
4. To determine if school location is related to availability of library and geography text books
5. To make inventory of number of field studies and geography teaching aids and determine their relationship to school location.
6. To know weather instructional materials is one the major factors affecting teaching and learning of geography in selected secondary schools in Ika south LGA of Delta state, Nigeria.
7. To find out to what extent do text books influence the students’ performance.
1.4 Research questions
1. Does the school locations affect School teaching and learning of Geography?
2. Does school location affects the quality and quantity of geography teachers in secondary schools?
3. How can one justify the assertion that incompetency among geography teachers constitute a barrier to the teaching and learning of geography in government secondary school?
4. Is inadequate instructional materials a major factor affecting teaching and learning of geography in selected secondary schools in Ika south LGA of Delta state, Nigeria?
5. To what extent do text books influence the students’ academic performance on geography?
1.5 RESEARCH HYPOTHESIS
H0: The school location cannot affect School teaching and learning of Geography.
H1: The school location can affect School teaching and learning of Geography.
H0: There is no significant relation between school location and the quality and quantity of geography teachers in secondary schools.
H1: There is a significant relation between school location and the quality and quantity of geography teachers in secondary schools.
H0: One cannot justify the assertion that in competency among geography teachers constitute a barrier to the teaching and learning of geography in government secondary school.
H1: One can justify the assertion that in competency among geography teachers constitute a barrier to the teaching and learning of geography in government secondary school.
H0: Inadequate instructional materials is not a major factors affecting teaching and learning of geography in selected secondary schools in Ika south LGA of Delta state, Nigeria.
H1: Inadequate instructional materials is a major factors affecting teaching and learning of geography in selected secondary schools in Ika south LGA of Delta state, Nigeria.
- SIGNIFICANCE OF STUDY
This research work is on the problem of teaching geography in nigeria government secondary schools using Ika south LGA of Delta state as a case study. This topic is a very interested one which will serve as a body of knowledge to teachers, students, researchers, entire public as well as policy makers towards improvement in teaching and learning of geography in government secondary schools.
- SCOPE OF THE STUDY
This research work is on the problem of teaching geography in nigeria government secondary schools using Ika south LGA of Delta stateas a case study.
- LIMITATION OF STUDY
In this research the researcher experiences numerous difficulties.
One of the most limiting factors is inadequate fund to run the cost of the project like traveling to research for data collection.
Another limiting factor is insufficient time to go to the libraries and other sources of information as much as the researcher wished, sometimes lecture times coincided with library time.
Another limiting factor was ineffective communicator, the researcher using questionnaire method, and the majority of people lacking formal education were unable to communicate effectively to question despites all this difficulties the researcher was successful as he was able to accommodate the problems through careful adaptation.
1.9 DEFINITION TERMS
Geography : Geography is the science which seeks to explain the character of places and the distribution of people, features and events as they occur and develop over the surface of the earth. Geography is concerned with human – environment interactions in the context of specific places and locations. Its special characteristics are its breadth of study, its span of methodology, its synthesis of work from other disciplines including the physical sciences and the humanities and its interest in the future management of people – environment interrelationships.
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