1.1 Background of the Study
Nigerian Educational System has gone through various developments and changes viz-a-viz curriculum issues. The dynamic nature of the curriculum process informs the concept of effective planning of integrated science curriculum in secondary schools.
This is so because science education plays a vital role in the lives of individuals and the development of a nation scientifically and technologically (Aleboisu and Ifamuyiwa, 2008). It is widely and generally acknowledged that the gateway to the survival of a nation scientifically and technologically is scientific literacy which can only be achieved through science education. This starts from giving students a good foundation in integrated science from junior secondary level.
But government in this direction can not be said to have yielded much fruits given the dwindling nature of student’s performance in integrated science in junior secondary school and the low rate of students offering science in senior secondary school as well as their performance in core science subjects.
Disturbed by this ugly development, researchers in the field of science education in Nigeria embarked on series of studies to find the logic behind this ugly development. They found that the problem stemmed from the first form of science a child comes across at the junior secondary school level that is integrated science. Integrated science provide students sound basis for further science education study, hence a child that is not well grounded in integrated science at this level would not show interest in offering core science subject (Biology, Chemistry and Physics) at Senior Secondary Schol level which are pre-requisites for studying science oriented courses at the Nation’s tertiary institutions.
They also found that lack of qualified teachers, lack of practical work as well as lack of equipments and facilities for teaching, insufficient allotment of time for integrated science on the school time table and poor methods of teaching are the major factors militating against the successive implementation of the core curriculum in integrated science (Ajuwape and Olatoye, 2004).
It is against this background that the researcher seeks to investigate the subject matter of this research: The impact of effective planning and curriculum development on teaching and learning of integrated science in secondary school.
1.2 Statement of Problem
Integrated Science have been taught in Junior Secondary Schools since 1972 in order to inculcate science knowledge and encourage students to offer science subjects in Senior Secondary School (Ifamuyiwa, 2008).
But inspite of this, government effort cannot be said to have yielded much fruits given the dwindling nature of students’ performance in integrated science which has a negative effect on the future performance of those offering core science and consequently poor performance inc ore subjects in WAEC and NECO examination which are prerequisites for studying in the Nation’s tertiary institutions. This has been attributed to myriad of problems ranging from lack of qualified teachers, lack of equipments and facilities for teaching, lack of practical works, insufficient allotment of time for integrated science on the school time table and poor teaching methods.
Disturbed by this trend, the subject matter of this research: the impact of effective planning and curriculum development on teaching and learning of integrated science in secondary school becomes an empirical problem worthy of investigation. As such the researcher seeks to find out if the integrated science curriculum is effectively planned to enhance effective teaching and learning of integrated science from JSS I to JSS III in sequential order of simple to complex topics.
1.3 Objectives of the Study
The overall objective of this study is to determine the impact of effective planning and curriculum development on teaching and learning of integrated science in secondary schools. To this end, the study seeks to accomplish the following specific objectives:
- i) To determine the effect of planning on teaching and learning of integrated science in secondary school.
- ii) To examine the effect of National Integrated Science Curriculum on teaching and learning in secondary schools.
- iii) To identify the problems militating against the teaching and learning of integrated science in secondary schools.
- iv) To proffer workable solutions to the identified problems.
1.4 Significance of Study