Improvised Instructional Materials Utilization and Teaching of Biology

Abstract: The study was undertaken to examine improvised instructional materials utilization and teaching of Biology in secondary schools in Abak Local Government Area. Two (2) research questions were formulated for study. An expo facto research design was adopted to guide the study. An expo facto research design was adopted to guide the study. From the population size of 30 Biology teachers, fourteen (14) Biology teachers were randomly sampled from seven (7) public secondary schools in the study area. The instrument used for data collection was a researcher-structured questionnaire. Data collected were analyzed using mean (x) and Stand Deviation (S.D). Findings showed that teachers perception on the use of improvised instructional materials in the teaching of Biology was positive and that teachers years of teaching experience influences the utilization of improvised instructional materials. It was recommended that Biology teachers should make teaching-learning process learners-centred by teaching with improvised instructional materials, heads of schools should sponsor their teachers to attain workshops and symposiast on the  skill of production and utilization of improvised instructional materials, teachers with lesser years of teaching experience should get in contact with the teachers with longer years of teaching experience so as to acquire more ideas on how to effectively produce and utilized improvised instructional materials in teaching and teachers should endeavour to use improvised instructional materials in teaching irrespective of their years of teaching service.

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Improvised Instructional Materials Utilization and Teaching of Biology

CHAPTER ONE: INTRODUCTION

1.1       Background to the Study

The importance of improvised instructional materials in the teaching of Biology cannot be over-emphasized. Successful implementation of Biology curriculum depends on the quality and quantity of improvised instructional materials available to teachers and how it is utilized in teaching Biology in secondary schools. Improvised instructional materials stimulate learners’ interest and teachers to overcome some limitations during presentation of the subject matter (Peter, 2009).

However, according to Eya (2009), improvised instructional materials enhance learning and how it is been utilized in teaching makes it more pleasurable. Instructional materials consists of variety of equipment and materials used for teaching by teacher and stimulate self-activity on the part of the students. This equipment includes chalkboards, real objects, models, pictures, charts, television, computers, textbooks, projected and non-projected materials, etc.

The use of instructional materials in teaching Biology helps to enrich learning; while lack of these materials in the classroom makes teaching of Biology less interactive and more difficult to understand. These instructional materials can be improvised in place of the standardized ones to bring about the same learning results as the standardized instructional materials. It is well known among educators that educational experiences involving learners’ active participation lead to concrete experience than abstract experience.

Instructional materials add elements of reality by providing concrete examples to learning. Many authors have written on the use of instructional materials both in teaching Biology and other related subjects in order to enhance teaching for desired social and behavioural change (Michael, 2001).

Improvised instructional materials possesses some inherent advantages that make them unique in Biology teaching. It provides the teacher with interesting and compelling platforms for conveying information since they motivate learners who want to learn more (Udo, 2005). Also, by providing opportunities for private study and references, the learners’ interest and curiosity are increasing stimulated. Further, the teacher is assisted in overcoming physical difficulties that could have hindered his effective presentation of a give topic. They generally make teaching and learning easier and less stressful. They are special indispensable catalysts of social and intellectual development of the learners (Aku, 2008).

Bassey (2008) pointed out a good relationship between the teaching of Biology and using of instructional materials to enhance teaching and learning, teachers lagged behind in using instructional materials during teaching and learning.

However, the primary concern of all teachers is to teach. Teachers owe students their best efforts in providing meaningful learning through the use of different types of materials in teaching. The serious problems being faced for a long time is that of achieving educational sustainability and lack of sufficient fund to produce and distribute quality materials in sufficient quantity to schools (Awosiyan, 2005). It is observed that most of the teachers at the secondary school level do not know the importance of improvised instructional materials in the teaching of Biology because they were not properly trained in terms of materials development and utilization. Those who know it are lazy towards using it. Also those who utilized it face the poor environment to store and maintain the materials for future use. Bassey (2010) ascertain that teachers who utilize improvised instructional materials well always capture the attention of the learners as well as maintaining long term retention. Therefore, teacher education programme must integrate material development whereby teachers learn how to design and construct various materials and equipment which could be used for teaching-learning process (Edward, 2000).

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Experience they say is the best teacher. A seminar paper by Peter (2009) indicated that teachers with many years of teaching experience know how to improvise materials for teaching Biology. Improvised instructional materials when efficiently improvised and utilized can turn a dull student’s intellect to a great academic achiever.

Improvised Instructional Materials Utilization and Teaching of Biology

1.2       Statement of the Problem

The use of instructional materials in Biology instruction has been widely researched but many questions still remain unanswered. The need for exploring locally available materials in our schools and resourcefulness of the teacher must be in line with the learners’ curriculum. But the availability of Biology related instructional materials has not been fully encouraging; hence, teachers should improvise the materials for effective teaching. However, some teachers who may want to improvise have difficulty in the processes of improvisation and utilization of improvised instructional materials. The rationale behind the choice of this study was to ascertain the effect of utilization of “improvised instructional materials on the teaching of Biology in secondary schools in Abak Local Government Area”.

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