THE IMPACT OF TEACHER’S IMPROVISED MATERIALS IN TEACHING AND LEARNING OF BIOLOGY IN SENIOR SECONDARY SCHOOLS IN ORU WEST LGA OF IMO STATE
1.1. Background to the Study
The impact of teacher’s improvised materials in teaching and learning of Biology in senior secondary schools in Nigeria has been a subject of interest in recent educational research. According to Akinbobola (2009), the use of improvised materials in teaching Biology significantly enhances students’ understanding and retention of biological concepts. The study found that students taught with improvised materials performed better in post-tests than those taught with conventional methods. This suggests that improvised materials, when effectively used, can foster a more engaging and interactive learning environment.
In a similar vein, Okebukola and Jegede (1992) reported that the use of improvised materials in teaching Biology not only improves students’ academic performance but also stimulates their interest in the subject. The researchers argued that these materials make abstract concepts more concrete, thereby facilitating comprehension. They further noted that improvised materials are particularly beneficial in resource-poor settings, where standard teaching aids may not be readily available.
However, the effectiveness of improvised materials in teaching Biology is not without challenges. According to Ogunniyi (1986), many teachers lack the necessary skills and training to effectively use these materials. This, coupled with the time and effort required to create improvised materials, may limit their widespread use. Furthermore, the quality of improvised materials may vary, potentially affecting the quality of instruction.
Despite these challenges, several studies have highlighted the potential benefits of using improvised materials in teaching Biology. For instance, Aina (2012) found that students taught with improvised materials showed a greater interest in Biology and were more likely to pursue further studies in the subject. This suggests that improvised materials can play a crucial role in promoting students’ interest and engagement in Biology.
The use of teacher’s improvised materials in teaching and learning of Biology in senior secondary schools in Nigeria has significant potential benefits. However, for these benefits to be fully realized, there is a need for teacher training and support in the creation and use of improvised materials. Further research is also needed to explore how these materials can be effectively integrated into the Biology curriculum.
1.2. Statement of the Problem
The problem of inadequate teaching materials in Biology education in Nigerian senior secondary schools is a significant issue that needs to be addressed. According to Aina (2013), the lack of appropriate teaching materials often leads to a decrease in students’ interest and understanding of the subject. This problem is further exacerbated by the limited resources available to schools, particularly in rural areas, which makes it difficult for teachers to access and utilize standard teaching materials.
The use of improvised materials by teachers has been suggested as a potential solution to this problem. However, the impact of these improvised materials on the teaching and learning of Biology in senior secondary schools is not well understood. A study by Okebukola (2010) found that while improvised materials can enhance the teaching process, their effectiveness in improving students’ understanding and performance in Biology is still unclear.
Furthermore, there is a lack of empirical evidence on the impact of teachers’ improvised materials on students’ interest and achievement in Biology. A study by Ajaja (2011) suggested that improvised materials could increase students’ interest in Biology, but the study did not measure the impact on students’ academic performance. Therefore, there is a need for more comprehensive research to understand the full impact of these materials on both students’ interest and achievement in Biology.
Moreover, the skills and knowledge required by teachers to effectively use improvised materials in teaching Biology is another area of concern. According to Ezeudu (2012), many teachers lack the necessary skills to create and use improvised materials effectively, which could limit their potential benefits. Therefore, there is a need for professional development programs to equip teachers with the necessary skills.
Additionally, the quality and appropriateness of the improvised materials used by teachers is another issue that needs to be addressed. According to Udo and Akpan (2014), some improvised materials may not accurately represent the biological concepts they are intended to teach, which could lead to misconceptions among students. Therefore, there is a need for guidelines and standards to ensure the quality and appropriateness of improvised materials.
Furthermore, while the use of improvised materials by teachers could potentially address the problem of inadequate teaching materials in Biology education in Nigerian senior secondary schools, there are several issues that need to be addressed. These include the impact of these materials on students’ interest and achievement in Biology, the skills and knowledge required by teachers to effectively use these materials, and the quality and appropriateness of the materials. Therefore, there is a need for more research and policy interventions to address these issues.
1.3. Aim and Objectives of the Study
The study examines the impact of teacher’s improvised materials in teaching and learning of biology in senior secondary schools in Oru West LGA of Imo State. The specific objectives of the study are:
- To examine the extent to which teachers’ improvised materials influence the teaching and learning of Biology in senior secondary schools.
- To investigate the perception of students towards the use of improvised materials in Biology lessons.
- To assess the level of creativity and innovation among Biology teachers in the improvisation of teaching materials.
- To determine the challenges faced by Biology teachers in improvising materials for teaching and learning.
1.4. Research Questions
The research Questions are buttressed below:
- To what extent do teachers’ improvised materials influence the teaching and learning of Biology in senior secondary schools?
- What is the perception of students towards the use of improvised materials in Biology lessons?
- How can the level of creativity and innovation among Biology teachers in the improvisation of teaching materials be assessed?
- What are the challenges faced by Biology teachers in improvising materials for teaching and learning?
1.5 Research Hypothesis
The hypothetical statement for the study is buttressed below:
Ho: Teachers’ improvised materials has no influence on the teaching and learning of Biology in senior secondary schools.
H1: Teachers’ improvised materials has influence on the teaching and learning of Biology in senior secondary schools.
1.6. Significance of the Study
The significance of the study on the impact of teacher’s improvised materials in teaching and learning of biology in senior secondary schools in Nigeria is multi-faceted. Firstly, it highlights the importance of resourcefulness and creativity in the teaching process. Teachers who can improvise materials for teaching biology can make the subject more relatable and engaging for students. This can lead to a better understanding of complex biological concepts, thereby improving academic performance.
Secondly, the study underscores the role of improvised materials in bridging the resource gap in many Nigerian schools. Due to budget constraints, many schools in Nigeria may not have access to state-of-the-art teaching aids. In such scenarios, the ability of a teacher to improvise can be a game-changer. It can ensure that the teaching and learning process continues unhindered, despite the lack of resources.
Thirdly, the study brings to light the potential of improvised materials to foster practical learning. Biology is a subject that benefits greatly from practical demonstrations. Improvised materials can be used to simulate real-life biological processes, making abstract concepts tangible. This can stimulate students’ interest in the subject and encourage them to explore it further.
Fourthly, the study emphasizes the role of teachers as innovators. By improvising materials for teaching biology, teachers are not just imparting knowledge, but also demonstrating problem-solving skills. This can inspire students to think creatively and innovatively, skills that are highly valued in the 21st-century workplace.
Fifthly, the study can influence policy-making in the education sector. The findings of the study can be used to advocate for more training for teachers on improvisation skills. It can also be used to lobby for more funding for schools, especially those in rural and underprivileged areas, to provide them with the necessary teaching aids.
Lastly, the study can contribute to the body of knowledge on teaching methodologies. It can provide insights into how improvised materials can be effectively used in teaching not just biology, but other subjects as well. This can be beneficial to educators worldwide, as they strive to make learning more engaging and effective for their students.
1.7. Scope of the Study
The study examines the impact of teacher’s improvised materials in teaching and learning of biology in senior secondary schools in Oru West LGA of Imo State. The study is restricted to selected Secondary Schools in Oru West LGA of Imo State.
1.8. Operational Definition of Terms
- Impact: This generally refers to the effect or influence that an event, person, or phenomenon has on its surroundings or on other entities. In a broader context, it could also refer to the physical force exerted by one object onto another.
- Teacher: A teacher is a person who helps others to acquire knowledge, competences or values. They are often employed in educational institutions such as schools or universities, and they use a variety of teaching methods to facilitate learning.
- Improvised Materials: These are teaching aids made from readily available resources or materials. They are often used in educational settings to enhance the learning experience, especially when standard teaching materials are not available or are too expensive.
- Teaching: This is the process of facilitating learning, or the acquisition of knowledge, skills, values, beliefs, and habits. It involves methods such as storytelling, discussion, teaching, training, and directed research.
- Learning: Learning is the process of acquiring new understanding, knowledge, behaviors, skills, values, attitudes, and preferences. It can occur through teaching, training, or research.
- Biology: This is a natural science that studies life and living organisms, including their physical structure, chemical processes, molecular interactions, physiological mechanisms, development, and evolution.
- School: A school is an educational institution designed to provide learning spaces and learning environments for the teaching of students under the direction of teachers. It is where formal education often takes place, and it can range from preschools to universities.
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THE IMPACT OF TEACHER’S IMPROVISED MATERIALS IN TEACHING AND LEARNING OF BIOLOGY IN SENIOR SECONDARY SCHOOLS IN ORU WEST LGA OF IMO STATE