Abstract: This research work examined Method of Teaching and Integrated Science Performance among Students in Secondary Schools. Three research questions and three null hypotheses were stated to guide the researcher. The population of the study comprised of 914 Junior Secondary Two (JSS 2) students. The sample size used for the study was one hundred students (100) draw from two public schools. Basic Science Achievement Test (BSAT) was the instrument for data collection. Data obtained for the study were analyzed using mean, standard deviation and t-test statistics analysis.
Findings showed that: there is a significant difference in academic performance of students in Integrated Science taught using demonstration and lecture methods of teaching in favour of demonstration group. It was also revealed that there is no significant difference in academic performance of male and female students taught Integrated Science using demonstration method as well as lecture method. Based on the findings, it was recommended among others that Integrated Science teachers should use demonstration method of teaching during lesson delivery.
Method of Teaching and Integrated Science Performance among Students in Secondary Schools
1.1 Background to the Study
Integrated science is an approach to science in which the fundamental unity of science is stressed while the traditional boundaries between science related courses are eliminated (Ekpo, 2016). Integrated science subject has enjoyed a wide range of acceptance among science educators since it is expected to lay adequate foundation for future progress and success in the various disciplines in science such as Biology, Physics, Chemistry, amongst others. Integrated science as an integrated subject is taught at the primary and junior secondary school level so as to prepare the students for the core science subjects in the senior and higher level of education.
Integrated science is a revolutionary new introductory science curriculum developed for students considering a career in Science. Integrated science formally known as Integrate science is the first form of science a child comes across at the secondary school level for core subjects (Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics, Geography and Biology) at the senior secondary school level. This implies that for students to be able to study science subjects at the senior secondary school level successfully, such students has to be well grounded in Integrated Science at Junior secondary school level. In view of this, Integrated Science is given great emphasis in Junior Secondary School Curriculum. Thus Integrated Science provides
- Students at the junior Secondary schools level a sound basic for continuing science education either in single science subject or further integrated science.
- It enhances the scientific literacy of the citizenry.
- It allows students to have general view of the world of science.
- It allows students to understand their environment in its totality rather than in fragments.
- Serves as unifying factors for the various science subjects (Federal Ministry of Education, 2008).
The fundamental aim of the Nigerian Integrated science Project which is a process oriented curriculum is to develop in students’ science oriented skills. The teachings of Integrated science make students have first-hand experiences of the way a problem situation is tackled by a scientist; inquisitive about their physical and biological environment; enable students to comprehend the major unifying science concepts and pattern such as the principle of conservation of energy, the structure of materials and the law of gravitation. It provides opportunities for students to use measuring instruments such as thermometers, voltmeters, ammeters and observational aids such as a simple microscope, and it also make students acquainted with science process skills such as measuring, observing, experimenting, inferring, predicting, classifying, communicating, and recording of data.
However, many factors have hindered the successive implementation of the core curriculum in Integrated Science. These factors according to Chukwuneke and Chikwenze (2012) include teachers’ method of teaching, learning environment, student’s view of the subject, availability of instructional aids, among others these hindrances had led to the poor academic achievement of students in school. Abudullahi (2017) and Ogeba (2017) were of the views that methods employed by science teachers for teaching science in schools are unsuitable. They pointed out that most teachers of science put more emphasis on theoretical aspect rather than practical aspect even when science had long shifted from talking to doing.
According to Okwu and Karume (2016), what students are taught and how well they comprehend is greatly influenced by teaching methods applied. The researchers further noted that some students encounter problems with a topic or concept as a result of the methods that were used by the teachers.
Teaching methods here refers to the various teaching strategies and approaches adopted by a teacher in the cause of delivering a lesson. According to Idigo (2016), teaching methods are standard procedures use in the presentation of instructional materials and the concept of activities. Ogbozer (2014) posited that teaching methods refer to the various approaches a teacher uses when presenting the lesson content or instruction to the learners.
However, for teaching to be effective, Odili (2011) opined that the methods of teaching should be carefully planned and organize so as to produce positive result and factors such as class size, teachers’ ability to handle the methods, teachers knowledge of the learners, facilities available to enhance effective use of the methods and the amount of content to be presented should be considered. Idigo (2010) noted that there are several methods at the disposal of the teachers but which ever method is preferred by the teachers should give students opportunity to participate effectively in the teaching-learning process.
There are several teaching methods that can be used in science teaching. Some of these methods include demonstration method, lecture method, project method, problem-solving method, discovery method, lecture method, laboratory method among others. Most of these methods have been researched on by educational researchers but demonstration method seems to be less popular even when it can afford the learners opportunity to take charge of their learning. According to Harris and Katz (2011), instead of using rigid lesson plan and methods that will only direct a learner down a free specific path (teacher centered), methods such as demonstration method should be adopted which will allow in-depth investigation by the learners thus, making the learners active participants (learners centered).
Also, to arrest students’ attention, interest, curiosity and promote their performance, the use of activity stimulating and student-centered approach like demonstration method instead of depending on the conventional approach need to be embraced. Demonstration method refers to the type of teaching method in which the teacher is the principal actor while the students watch with the intention to act later. Here the teacher does whatever the students are expected to do at the end of the lesson by showing them how to do it and explaining the step-by-step process to them (Ameh, Daniel and Akus, 2017).
Mundi (2016) described it as a display or exhibitions usually done by the teacher while the students watch with keen interest. The author further added that, it involves showing how something works or the steps involved in the process. Some of the advantages of this method as outlined by Olaitan (2014) and Mundi (2012) include: It saves time and facilitate material economy; the method is an attention inducer and a powerful motivator in lesson delivery; students receive feedback immediately through their own products; it gives a real-life situation of course of study as students acquire skills in real-life situations using tools and materials; it help to motivate students when carried out by skilled teachers and it is good in showing the appropriate ways of doing things.
Conventionally, lecture method is a common strategy teachers employ in the teaching of Integrated science. It is also referred to as talk and chalk or textbook method (Gbamaja, 2011). In the course of employing the method, the teacher dominates the teaching with very little participation on the part of the students. Here the teacher is seen as the repository of all knowledge while the students are passive recipients of knowledge transmitted by the teachers in the process of learning.
The method has the advantage of covering a wider area within a short time but it is not student centered and students do not gain mastery of concepts. Having critically examined these two methods of teaching, the question now is what the effect of demonstration method of teaching and students’ academic performance in integrated science? In order to provide answer to the above question, the researcher is to investigate teaching methods (demonstration and lecture) and academic performance of students in Integrated Science in secondary schools in Etim Ekpo Local Government Area?
Method of Teaching and Integrated Science Performance among Students in Secondary Schools
1.2 Statement of the problem
Education sector in Nigeria has series of challenges. The important area of Integrated Science challenge is inability to select appropriate method of teaching by teachers in schools. Improving quality in education requires adequate competent teachers, appropriate facilities, materials and methods which are lacking; these form part of the problems in the study. Thus, one of the major challenges for the of educational system is the teachers’ knowledge of selecting appropriate method of teaching for teaching Integrated science at all levels, which also affect the quality delivery of educational institutions, teacher’s training and production.
The inability to select appropriate instructional method in junior secondary schools is a problem to students learning, they do not learn at the same space. This study therefore, is geared towards finding out if the use of teacher’s demonstration could bring a solution to the problem of poor students’ achievement in Integrated Science. Hence, this study will be to determine the effect of methods of teaching (demonstration and lecture methods) on students’ performance in Integrated Science in secondary schools in Etim Ekpo Local Government Area.