The Demonstration Methods On Teaching And Learning Chemistry In Senior Secondary School In Some Selected Schools

Project and Seminar Material for Chemistry Education

The Demonstration Methods On Teaching And Learning Chemistry In Senior Secondary School In Some Selected Schools


The main concern in education sector is how Chemistry demonstration teaching methods affect students’ performance. This study examined demonstration teaching methods on performance of students in Chemistry in senior secondary schools (O-level) in Nigeria precisely in Enugu urban in Enugu state. The study applied descriptive research designed that incorporated qualitative and quantitative approach. The sample of teachers 78, students 129 and inspectors 9 was surveyed using in-depth interview and questionnaire. Qualitative data was analyzed descriptively using SPSS while thematic analysis was used to analyzed qualitative data. The study findings revealed that most effective demonstration teaching methods were demonstration followed by question and answers and then brainstorming, teachers should know the value and impact of different demonstration teaching methods and regular training/workshop should be conducted on demonstration teaching methods. The study recommended that traditional methods like lecture should not be used. The study also suggested other areas for further research as the same study should be carried in other district before generalization is done and similar research also should be conducted in private schools to know the teaching conditions.

Chapter One


1.1 Background of Study

The demonstration methods on teaching and learning chemistry in senior secondary school in some selected schools in Enugu urban, Enugu state.

The performances of chemistry students in senior school chemistry examinations is of great concern to many people in Enugu urban. Olaitan et al quoted in Aigbomian (1997) on this issue of chemistry students performance in senior school examination. The performance of secondary school students at the external examination in the science like chemistry has been causing some concern to parents, teachers as well as the government. He said that this has been particularly disturbing as it is believe that the much talked about technological take-off cannot be realized without a considerable improvement on the present students’ performance in school certificate examinations in the sciences like chemistry. Many scholars have studied some of the factors that could affect student’s performance in examinations and have made some useful discoveries.

Some of such discoveries are that:

“That achievement in public and teacher-made examinations in chemistry have not been encouraging-various factors have been identified for the negative attitude and apparent lack of interest among senior Secondary school students in chemistry.

One of these factors is the inability of teachers to put across chemical concepts, idea, et ecetera, to the chemistry students”. Olaitan et al (1991-98). Other scholars have suggested that the teacher is the main determinant of students performance in examination. Okpara (1987) stated that teachers play important roles in teaching and learning. Hill drug (1982) made it clear that the personality of the teacher determines to a large extent, the students’ performance. This was well explained in his statement that teachers who do not know what they are supposed to be teaching rather obviously cannot teach it, no matter what the quality of the children placed under their care. Ali (1984) in his own view said that:

“Certain science teachers behaviours affect the efficiency and effectiveness of his science teaching. If the teacher possesses and uses a behaviour which fosters a certain secondary school science objectives then such an objective will most likely be achieved when he teaches science to his students”.

Okoro (1990) in his own observation said that the teacher is directly connected with every educational programme and plays an important part in its implementation.

We now wants to find out if the degree of learning of the chemistry students in senior secondary certificate chemistry examinations in most schools in Enugu urban is as a result of what the teachers are or what they do.

1.2 Statement of Problem

We can see that some scholars have said that student’s failure or success in senior school certificate chemistry examinations depend on their teacher’s competence. But to the researcher’s best of knowledge, no works, or probably not much works have been done to prove specialfically in Enugu urban, Enugu State the extent to which teachers’ competence students’ learning ability in some selected senior school certificate chemistry examinations. The aim of this research therefore, is to find out whether performance or ability of chemistry students in senior school certificate examinations in schools in Enugu urban is as a result of the type of teachers they have.

1.3 Need / Importance of the Study:

This research would help to improve the performance of chemistry students in senior school certificate chemistry examinations.

This is because, if it is found out that teachers are the basic influence of students performance time would be taken to make sure that the best teachers are employed.

According to him, the teacher has the difficult task of interpreting programme goals, objectives and course content to the students; the teacher understands the students more than those who see them outside the classroom and is more aware of their learning problems than the administrator or members of the school Board.

Hilldrup (1982) observed that since the teacher is in a kind of intermediate position between the students’ failure and success, there are certain attributes which he must posses to attain his aims. Ukeje (1986) agreed that there are some skills, ability, and knowledge required by the teacher in order to perform his duties efficiently so as to influence the students towards success.

Okpara (1984) is of the view that for the teacher to perform well in science examinations, the teacher must posses competence in language, innovation abilities and skill in provision of instructional materials, good manual skills in the science laboratory and lesson planning skill et ecetera.

Now, the researcher have learnt from the works of many scholars that there is a certain standard to which the personality of a teacher should reach or what he/she is expected to be doing before he/her aim can be acquired.

The teacher training colleges and universities would enjoy better equipment and resources through this research. The reason for this is that the government would be motivated to provide them with necessary things in order to produce more compotent teachers. Parents and students would also benefit from this research because once the problem is proved right and corrected, the parents would no longer spend their time in schools without achieving their desired aims.

Lastly, it is also of immense benefit to the researcher since it is a requirement for the award of Nigeria certificate in education.

1.4 Purpose of Study

In this study, the researcher intended to find out whether the nature of the effect of lecture and demonstration method on teaching and learning secondary chemistry in Enugu state, Enugu urban is as a result of their chemistry teachers’ personality and chemistry teaching approaches. In other words, the researcher wanted to:

  1. Find out whether the degree of learning performance of students in senior school chemistry examinations in schools of Enugu urban Enugu state is as a result of the type of teachers they have.
  2. Find out the teacher variables or factors which influence the chemistry students’ performance in senior school chemistry examination in Enugu urban, Enugu state.

1.5 Scope of Study

The study covered from 2000-2009, for content, the variables that were looked into are the performance of chemistry teachers in teaching and the performance of chemistry in teaching and the performance students in senior school examinations. This research was meant for or covered the final year chemistry teachers and final year chemistry students of selected secondary schools in Enugu urban.

1.6 Research Question

The study answered the following questions

  1. Are demonstration teaching methods used in teaching chemistry in senior secondary school?
  2. What are students’ perceptions on the appropriateness of demonstration teaching methods use to teach Science subject in senior secondary school in Enugu urban?
  3. To what extent demonstration teaching methods impact on students’ performance in senior secondary schools in Enugu urban?

Chapter Five

Conclusion and Recommendations

5.1 Introduction

This chapter presents conclusion recommendations and suggestion for further research based on collected and analyzed information in chapter four.

5.2 Conclusion

The study revealed that demonstration teaching methods identified by respondents (teachers) as the most used in teaching chemistry are question and answers, group discussion, presentation, brainstorming, demonstration, seminars and lecture. These methods make students understand and grasp science concepts better. Learner-centered methods are thus emphasized because they provide opportunity to ask for clarification compared to teacher- centered methods such as lecture and use of seminars which place the students at the receiving end.

The study also revealed that a great number of students do not really understand and grasp the subject matter most of the time during instruction when new concepts are introduced. Question and answers, demonstration and group discussion were selected by students as most effective method of understanding new concepts in chemistry. However it was revealed that the suitable methods of teaching are cultural dependent but science subject teachers should use at least two demonstration teaching methods and demonstration method should be one because in science subject’s student learns more and remember better when they physically see an activity being performed by their instructor.

The same demonstration teaching methods were preferred by students when teachers are introducing new concepts. Thus at least more than one teaching method should be used to make teaching effective.

The study also revealed that there is greater impact on demonstration teaching methods and student performance as it demonstrated that demonstration teaching methods such as group discussion, question and answer and combination of strategies are excellence ways of teaching which in turn have positive impact on students’ performance. Students often have little expertise in knowing if the method selected by an individual instructor was the best teaching method or just “a method” or simply the method with which the teacher was most comfortable.
This study has demonstrated that types of demonstration teaching methods used by teachers have impacts on students’ performance. This agrees with the previous studies of Haas, (2002), Gulobia, Wokadala and Bategeka (2010) and Sajjad, (2011).

Generally, the study revealed that demonstration teaching methods which were most effective are demonstration the next is brainstorming followed by question and answers, other methods are group discussion, presentation, lecture and the use of seminar being the least effective. Teacher’s choice of teaching strategy or model to enable effective teaching and learning is affected by context in that, for example, it would be difficult to do ‘role play’ or whole class ‘questioning’ in a noisy workshop within confined space. In brief the type of demonstration teaching methods has an impact on students’ performance. Question and answers method has the greatest impact in teaching of chemistry compared to other demonstration teaching methods and this agrees with previous with the study by J-Ping and Collis (1995) in (Faraday, Overton and Cooper, 2011) and contribution to the body of knowledge.

5.3 Recommendations

The results of this study revealed several areas of concern the following are recommendations to address each of that concern. First, the findings of the study also revealed that the choice of what teaching method to be used by the instructor depend on flexibility of the teacher. This may led the students fail to grasp the subject matter. The heads of schools should showed on regular basis, find out from students on which methods is helping them to understand and their request the relevant teachers to apply the methods leads to better students’ understanding. That way high students’ performance will be insured.

Second, the study revealed that teachers seem not be aware of value and impact of different demonstration teaching methods on students’ performance. This has lead to inappropriate application of ineffective and often outdated demonstration teaching methods (such as teacher-centered approach). The heads of schools in confliction with Ministry of Education and Vocational training should regular conduct training/ workshops on demonstration teaching methods in both science and art subjects. This will help teachers to appreciate and learn the best teaching practices particularly new demonstration teaching methods. It will also help to improve students’ performance and go along a way to meeting new government agenda of Big Results Now (BRN).

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