PROBLEMS FACING TEACHERS AND STUDENTS TOWARDS EFFECTIVE TEACHING AND LEARNING OF PRACTICAL AGRICULTURE IN JUNIOR SECONDARY SCHOOLS IN SELECTED LOCAL GOVERNMENTS IN EDO STATE

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ABSTRACT

The research seeks to examine the problems facing teachers and students towards effective teaching and learning of practical agriculture in junior secondary schools in selected local governments in Edo State. The main purpose of this study was to find out the problems facing teachers and students towards effective teaching and learning of practical agriculture in junior secondary schools in selected local governments in Edo State. One research question was used raised for the study and a self designed questionnaire was used to carry out the sampling size of two hundred and forty (240) respondents from four local governments in Edo State. The method adopted for analysis is the Mean  and Standard Deviation (SD). Based on the analysis carried out, the researcher found that there is unavailability of teaching aids and instructional materials in the schools. Also, teachers teaching practical agriculture are not very proficient in the teaching and learning of Agriculture. It was therefore recommended that the state government should provide sufficient instructional materials needed for the teaching/learning process of agricultural practical. Also, community leaders should be made to allocate land for agriculture practical or for school farming.

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

Background of the Study

Nigeria is an agricultural country before and after the discovery of petroleum. According to the Food and Agricultural Organization of United Nations (1999) agriculture is usually the mainstay of the economy and level of food consumption are relatively low.

Lawal (2000) noted that agriculture is perhaps the greatest single innovation that made it possible for man to live in settled community which grew gradually in complexity from families through village and Cities to modern nations.

Similarly Makinjola (2001) observed that the transformation agriculture from nomadic life was made possible by modern agriculture. To this effect importance of agriculture in a developing nation such as ours, cannot be over-emphasized. As a source of food supply, foreign exchange earners and employment of labour, agriculture should receive a priority of consideration towards the maintenance of a healthy economy agricultural education therefore is imperative and should be taken more seriously so that it will wipe away ignorance with regards to practical agriculture and developed interest toward farming. It was in line with taught that Inoaya (2004), stated that food supply is generally inadequate in quantity and quality in the Country. According to him, there is at present a significant increase in the Country’s population. Thus with too many months to food and too little land to farm, Nigeria has resorted to importing a lot of her food with her foreign exchange earning.

It therefore, become pertinent at this juncture to state that lack of property agricultural, education in our schools and lack of properly qualified agricultural teachers has resulted to reduced interest and poor performance of students in agriculture.

Uchegbu (1993) rightly observed that poor remuneration situation of agricultural teachers with irregular payment of salaries as well as fringe benefits and lack of teachers motivation, attributed to their low moral. This point was further highlighted by Ayandele (2005), Babalola and Ezenwa (2010) who asserted that one of the mentioned reasons for teachers ineffectiveness in schools arise out of the frustration due to non-participation in the organization’s decision-making process. Similarly, students poor performance and lack of interests are attributed to so many factors.

According to Ayandele (2005), non-availability of school equipment, inadequate instructional supervision, socio-economic background of students, etc. hinder the effective performance of students in teaching and learning.

Furthermore Madike (2003), pointed out that most of the schools in Nigeria do not teach agriculture and even in schools where it is taught, there is no serious attempt to provide adequately qualified teachers and necessary facilities. Most of our students he noted, lack both interest and aptitude for agriculture. The syllabus are not oriented towards the need of the society and the society and the standard of teaching of many agriculture science teachers is nothing to write home about.

 According to Mbanuju (1998), teachers of agricultural science make the subject boring. They use the farm as punishment ground for offending students, and this make students feel that the school farm is mainly for punishment. This goes a long way to kill interest of the students especially for practical work. As a result of this, students feel very proud to be associated with such subject like Chemistry, Physics, Biology, Mathematics and Additional Mathematics even when they do not have aptitude for such subjects. This makes them disregard subject like Agriculture science which they feel is for then never-do-wells. This impression of the youths about agriculture makes it difficult for the teachers to make any meaningful impact on the students both in the classroom and school farm during practical lessons.

Okoro (1999) pointed out that it is important to mention that there has been no evidence to show that secondary schools have gone into fulltime, on graduation because of the problems of finance, land tenure system, immature agriculture procedures, among others. According to him, the only exception is usually getting employed with ministry of agriculture. This observation, he tended to make some parent to choose for their children to take up agriculture. From the foregoing, one can infer that an exposure to agricultural science at the secondary school level is factor for higher studies in agricultural science.

In his own contribution Eze (1990), observed that teaching agricultural science in schools has been greatly lacking in their goals aspiration. Many agricultural educational institutions he pointed out should be established to educate and train people in the science of agriculture. He concluded that from this, young people will receive formal education and training which provides them with a career since agriculture is one of the main features of economic development of a country and a contributor to National income and employment, it should be accorded priority consideration towards the maintenance of a healthy economy.

In the light of the above problems the purpose of this study is to investigate the problems militating against effective teaching of agricultural science in our junior secondary schools in Nkanu West Local Government Area with a view of finding a way that will help generate a sound foundation for the improvement and development of agriculture in Nigeria.

Statement of the Problem

Agricultural science today is regarded as one of the most important aspects of human life. It has greatly increased man’s knowledge of his environment together with basic needs of food, shelter and clothing. Nigeria being a developing country and in a great need to meet the food demand of her population requires effective and purposeful agricultural education in her schools.

Presently, performances of students do not predict the hope of fulfilling our agricultural expectation as regards meeting the food need of the population through schools inspite of the effort being made by government to improve standard of teaching agricultural science in our secondary schools.

It then became pertinent to look inwardly for a better way of having a solid base for effective agricultural education in secondary schools. This study uses the junior section of the secondary school system to discover the problems causing failure of student especially in external examinations as the senior school certificate (S.S.C.E) and junior secondary school Examination (J.S.S.E). The identification of these problems for lasting agriculture programme for secondary schools in turn meeting the national objective in food production is the subjects of this research.

Purpose of the Study

            The main purpose of this study is to find out the problems facing teachers and students towards effective teaching and learning of practical agriculture in junior secondary schools in selected local governments in Edo State.

Research Questions

            The following research question will further guide the study:

  1. What are the problems affecting the effective teaching and learning of practical agriculture among secondary school students in selected local governments in Edo State?

Hypothesis

            The hypothesis that was tested in this study is:

There is no significant difference between the perceptions of teachers and students on the problems affecting the effective teaching of practical agriculture in secondary schools.

Significance of the Study

The findings of this study will be of immense benefit to science teachers and students.

This study will be significant to a number of Agricultural science teachers who will become aware of problems to teaching agricultural science, and guide them in making adjustment in their methods and techniques of teaching agriculture science. The teachers and students will have a true concept of, and develop positive attitude towards agriculture science. The Government, the researcher believes will come to realize the importance of agricultural development of the nation.

The need to provide the school with facilities relevant to the learning and teaching modern agriculture practices as secondary school level is very essential. It will also help in the acceptance new innovations in present day agriculture.

This information may be helpful in the evaluation of teaching and learning of Agriculture thus helping in putting in place the strategies aimed at improving teaching and learning of Agriculture in schools. Findings may be of value to teaching learning strategies and teaching learning resources in implementation of agriculture curriculum.

Finally, it will be helpful to farmer and creates in them the awareness of being part of the economy and contributing measures towards its development.

Scope of the Study

            This study covers on the problems of effective teaching and learning by teachers and students of agricultural science in Junior Secondary Schools with specific focus on selected local government in Edo State.

Limitation of Study

            In carrying out this research work, the researcher had to go through severe of challenges as money in the dispersing, photocopying and transportation was a major constraint for the success of the research work.

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