An Examination Of The Challenges Of Teaching Social Studies In Junior Secondary School

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An Examination Of The Challenges Of Teaching Social Studies In Junior Secondary School


Chapter One


Introduction

1.1 Background of the Study

Social studies is a program of teaching or study that a society employs to instill in students or pupils the concepts, information, skills, attitudes, and behaviors that it deems significant in regard to the relationships and things we have with one another Jiboku (1993). This is a dynamic body of knowledge in a subject that studies man’s interaction with his physical and social environment, specifically how he influences and is influenced by his physical, social, political, economic, psychological, and cultural settings. Social studies education in Nigerian secondary schools has a brief but significant history in the school curriculum. Social studies is more than a course of study; it is a way of life that combines social science and humanities to foster civic competency Jiboku (1993). There is a peer-reviewed journal that publishes papers of interest to educators at all levels, as well as a branch of research that studies society. Through the proper development, implementation, and utilization of the knowledge that social studies can provide about society’s best, the right environment can be created for the development of the right laws, ethics, and values for society in a way that is superior to what could be obtained through application of any knowledge obtainable for any of its component subject parts. Social studies, according to Jiboku (1993), is that aspect of learning that deals with how to get along with one’s environment, both physical and human, and how to develop those skills, knowledge, attitudes, and values that characterized a responsive and responsible citizen in a free world and free society. Teaching social studies is a relatively new phenomenon in most Nigerian secondary schools; it was previously known as general knowledge. This development posed a number of challenges for teachers, including the nature of the subject as a broad term, its precise definition, and the selection of appropriate objectives, content, and methodology. If correctly designed and managed, social studies as a tool may assist young people in solving a variety of problems. For example, in the United States and Canada, social studies has as its principal goal the education of children for effective citizenship in a democratic society.

The advantages of studying social studies cannot be overstated since it is a single integrated topic that has just lately been adopted by Nigerian institutions of learning from secondary to university levels, and it is now gaining national support. The planning and organization took place mostly in the domains of social science experts and professionals recruited from universities and who are generally out of touch and reach with the schools Jiboku (1993). The problem of dealing with a new subject that is quite different but has emerged from other well-established ones, the problem of lack of a clear out definition, the problem of lack of a definition majority of the current teachers who can teach the subject are unfamiliar with the result that they continue to teach the old concept and ideas under the new title. All of these issues, as well as others, pose challenges in social studies education. The discoverer or researcher truly wishes that social studies students have developed their initiative, inventiveness, and judgment in order to become clever and utilize social media.


1.2 Statement of the Problem

Despite the discipline’s crucial contribution, social studies education in secondary school has been plagued with issues. Since the main issue in Nigeria is how we should be united, many researchers have come to the conclusion that the importance of social studies to Nigeria can be appreciated when we look back to the experience of the two-and-a-half-year civil war, which taught all Nigerians the lesson of the age-old adage that says united we stand, divided we fall unity for strength learned from the war has been translated into all aspects of our lives political, educational, physical, and economic Jiboku (1993). In today’s Nigeria, a lot of problems have arisen between social studies and social subjects, which are physics and chemistry, due to a lack of qualified social studies teachers, lack of materials for teaching social studies subjects, the nature scope and lack of clear definition of the subject, and lack of knowledge of the method of teaching the subject. Because of the importance of science and technology, some schools pay less attention to social studies.


1.3 Objective of the Study

The general objective of the study is an examination of the challenges of teaching social studies in junior secondary school.

Specifically, there are:

  1. To find out if lack of instructional material is a challenge to teaching of social studies in secondary schools.
  2. To examine the challenges involved in teaching of social studies in secondary schools.
  3. To evaluate the extent to which the existent social studies curriculum is adequate in realizing functional education.
  4. To suggest appropriate solutions to the challenges of teaching social studies in secondary schools.

1.4 Research Questions

The following questions have been prepared for the study

  1. Is lack of instructional material a challenge to teaching of social studies in secondary schools?
  2. What are the challenges involved in teaching of social studies in secondary schools.
  3. To what extent is the existent social studies curriculum is adequate in realizing functional education?
  4. What are the appropriate solutions to the challenges of teaching social studies in secondary schools?

1.5 Significance of the Study

This research is of significance to the domain social studies education and as well throw more light on appropriate methodology and choice of instructional material. These aims and objectives however cannot be achieved if there are no sufficient and effective means of running these subjects into our Nigerian institution of learning.

The finding of the study would help to expose the problems and betters ways of teaching social studies, the introduction of social studies subject in Nigerian school curriculum is not without aims and objectives. The rational behind this introduction is to meet the state and nation man power needs.


1.6 Scope of the Study

This study will find out if lack of instructional material is a challenge to teaching of social studies in secondary schools. The study will also examine the challenges involved in teaching of social studies in secondary schools. The study will further evaluate the extent to which the existent social studies curriculum is adequate in realizing functional education. Lastly, the study will suggest appropriate solutions to the challenges of teaching social studies in secondary schools. Hence the study is delimited to secondary schools in Lokoja, Kogi state.


1.7 Limitation of the Study

This study was constrained by a number of factors which are as follows:

Just like any other research, ranging from unavailability of needed accurate materials on the topic under study, inability to get data.

Financial constraint, was faced by the researcher, in getting relevant materials and in printing and collation of questionnaires.

Time factor: time factor pose another constraint since having to shuttle between writing of the research and also engaging in other academic work making it uneasy for the researcher.


An Examination Of The Challenges Of Teaching Social Studies In Junior Secondary School


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An Examination Of The Challenges Of Teaching Social Studies In Junior Secondary School


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