1.1 Background to the Study
Education remains the greatest instrument for academic advancement, social mobilisation, political endurance and successful national development of any nation. It establishes the biggest venture in Nigeria that is why the government continues to ensure that funds, school facilities, instructional materials, teaching personnel and a beneficial learning environment are made available for the sector in Lagos State. The state Government has continuously encouraged primary education by adopting a social demand approach towards planning the education sector by making sure that every child in the state must have at least primary education (this was more pronounced during the administration of Babatunde Raji Fashola) in line with Archibong’s (2013) position that quality education does not just occur miraculously but can be achieved through continuous improvement efforts by the stakeholders in the education enterprise.
In recent times, education stakeholders have expressed their concern over the poor performance of students in the primary schools in Nigeria and most especially, Lagos State. Some blamed the school administrators (headmasters) and the teachers while some blamed the pupils themselves and the parents. Whoever to be blamed, the fact remains that, the school and its organizational management has correlation with the academic performance of the students (Olaleye, 2013). Sule (2013) in a reaction to pundits on the nature of quality and as a proportion of enhancement for the glaring descending pattern on educational accomplishment opined that school management (internal or external) has become a genuine instrument for checking teachers’ job performance.
Educational researchers have attempted to probe into the causative factors of poor performance of pupils in primary schools. While some researchers have reported that hard curriculum content is a causative factor, others blame the deficiencies on teacher factor. For example, Osalusi (2010) reported that if the children are given opportunity to be listened to and guided in a non-threatening atmosphere, they would achieve tremendously in terms of problem-solving and decision making. The absence of a child-centred technique to teaching according to Osalusi results to pupils’ poor achievement. Zimmerman (2010) reported that poor quality of instructional techniques was responsible for the poor achievement of pupils. A good number of these findings are teacher- related and this casts some doubts on the effectiveness of teachers especially in the areas of demonstration and role playing instructional strategies.
There are many research works supporting various instructional techniques which enhance teaching and learning as well as enhance achievement and interest among primary school pupils (Chiodo & Russell, 2006; Leming, Ellington and Schug, 2006; Russell and Waters, 2010). Russell and Waters (2010) stressed that teachers need to connect the content of the subject to the learners’ interests. Thus increasing learners’ interest in the content and actively engaging them in the learning process. There may be no doubt that some of such instructional techniques are being used in our primary schools by some teachers. However, despite the reported usefulness of some of the techniques and the possibility of their usefulness in teaching and learning, the poor achievement and low interest persist. This has created the need for this study which focused on the effect of demonstration and role playing instructional strategies on academic performance of pupils.
Instructional technique refers to action and processes through which the goal of a particular method of teaching is realized. ADPRIMA (2003) observed that techniques are building blocks of learning, remembering and effective learning. Techniques facilitate the development of skills that can be used to encourage and assist learners develop the concepts and processes required for achieving the set goals and objectives of learning and teaching. In this study simulation activities which processes revolve around role play, dramatization, games and other related actions were arranged for the pupils. Methods could be defined as the way a teacher decides on what learners will learn. Lawal and Oyeleye (2003) defined method as an orderly arrangement and systematic procedure of doing things. Method is a teacher’s approach to instruction on facts, concepts and generalization, that is, a systematic way in which teachers approach their teaching.
This study was carried out in order to address the importance of demonstration and role playing instructional strategies on academic performance in both public and private primary schools in the study area. The absence or shortage of facilities and equipments in primary schools would be a stumbling block and impediment towards the excellent academic performance of the primary school pupils. It is in view of this that a decision was taken to make a research on the effect of demonstration and role playing instructional strategies on academic performance of pupils in selected primary schools in Lagos state.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
Poor achievement among the primary school pupils has persisted despite the efforts of the government in raising the standard of the primary education and the overall educational development of the country. Given the value placed on the primary school curriculum, the need to teach effectively through effective techniques is indisputable. Over the years, experience and available records have indicated that many teachers find it difficult to teach with new methods, strategies, approaches and techniques. Whether poor achievement and low interest or ineffective teaching is due to lack of proper application of the integrated techniques by teachers is yet to be known.
Okam (2012) shows that out of many challenges in the teaching and learning, poor instructional techniques play a major role. Despite some efforts that have been made by researchers such as Okam, (2012) and Fadeiye (2005) to remedy the situation, there seems to be no evidence that achievement and interest have improved. Consequently, over the years, educational psychologists/theorists have frowned at instructional techniques that are teacher-centred, a situation bereft of active participation, social interaction and high achievement and interest of the learner. Among the educational psychologists/theorists that hold this view are Jean Piaget (cognitive development) and Lev Vygotsky (social development).
There is, however, inadequate documented information in research conducted in Nigeria on the effects of simulation instructional technique on pupils’ achievement and interest at the primary level of education. The problem of this study, therefore, is: what are the effects of demonstration and role playing instructional strategies on academic performance of pupils?
1.3 Objectives of the Study
The study examined the effect of demonstration and role playing instructional strategies on academic performance of pupils in selected primary schools in Lagos state. However, the specific objectives are:
- To understand the effect of demonstration on the academic performance of primary school pupils
- To examine the impact of field trip on the academic performance of primary school pupils
- To investigate the influence of problem solving on the academic performance of primary school pupils
- To determine the role of question and answer method of teaching on the academic performance of primary school pupils
- To ascertain the effect of laboratory method of teaching on the academic performance of primary school pupils
1.4 Research Questions
The following research questions guided the study
- What is the effect of demonstration on the academic performance of primary school pupils?
- Is there any impact of field trip on the academic performance of primary school pupils?
- What is the influence of problem solving on the academic performance of primary school pupils
- What is the role of question and answer method of teaching on the academic performance of primary school pupils?
- Does the laboratory method of teaching have any effect on the academic performance of primary school pupils?
1.5 Research Hypotheses
The following hypotheses were formulated to be tested at 0.05 level of significance.
- There is a significant relationship between demonstration and the academic performance of primary school pupils
- There is no significant correlation between field trip and the academic performance of primary school pupils
- There is no significant influence of problem solving on the academic performance of primary school pupils
- There is a significant relationship between question and answer method of teaching and the academic performance of primary school pupils
- There is a significant correlation between laboratory method of teaching and the academic performance of primary school pupils
1.6 Significance of the Study
This study has both theoretical and practical significance to education, teachers, pupils, professional bodies and researchers. The theoretical bases of this study were Piaget’s theory of cognitive development (1954) and Vygotsky’s Social Development Theory (1978).
The significance of Jean Piaget’s theory of cognitive development is that it recognized the role of children’s active involvement in learning activities through a spontaneous interaction with their environment rather than passively waiting for the teacher to present to them ready-made knowledge. This has assisted this study in organising various activities where pupils engaged themselves in role playing and dramatization. The novel situations and interesting activities that were created in the process of this study helped pupils to be motivated for greater mental activities.
Lev Vygotsky’s theory of learning emphasises interpersonal interactions that is, co-operative learning activities in which pupils engage themselves in learning. The significance of Vygotsky’s theory of social development is that it acknowledges social interaction as key to learning amongst pupils. In view of this, the study applied this principle in organizing simulation-based activities for the pupils.
Practically, the study would popularize simulation instructional technique and maximize its use by teachers in Nigeria. Teachers would be exposed to the instructional technique through conferences, seminars and workshops to be organised by professional associations of Teachers.
Furthermore, the technique would be of benefit to teachers as it would serve as a road map in the choice of a more efficient instructional technique. The teacher would also benefit from the study as it would indicate relative efficacy of the simulation-based instructional techniques with respect to gender and pupils’ achievement and interest. The teachers’ efficiency in using the technique to teach would enhance the achievement and interest of pupils.
In addition, pupils get information, encode, store and recall it differently. The use of the technique would enhance pupils’ retention and retrieval of information easily. This would be realized through active participation and construction/reconstruction of ideas by the pupils.
Finally, the study would be of benefit to researchers as it would serve as a yardstick for making comparison with similar studies outside Lagos State or Nigeria with a view to stimulating internationalization of studies in education. In addition, it would add to the existing pool of knowledge on school location/gender studies and provide an anchor upon which further studies may be carried out, thereby leading to increased pool of knowledge.
1.7 Scope of the Study
The study was carried out in Ibeju Lekki Education Zone of Lagos State. The schools, which are co-educational, are located in urban and rural areas of the zone. The primary six pupils in the twelve schools were used for the study. The study determined the effect of demonstration and role playing instructional strategies on academic performance of pupils in selected primary schools in Lagos state. The study covered effect of location, gender and interaction effect on these moderating variables using simulation instructional technique. The curriculum content covered was from the course outline which includes: Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome, Sexually Transmitted Diseases or Infection, Drug Abuse and Gender Discrimination.