Background of the Study
The introduction of social studies into the Nigeria School System was based on certain philosophical considerations. One of them is to address social issues and man’s problem of life in their interrelatedness, as they appear in real life situations instead of addressing them in an uninterrelated manner as those learnt through separate disciplines like Geography, Religion, Sociology and Anthropology. Social Studies according to Ezegbe (1994), was therefore introduced as an integrated discipline to make education real to life. Social studies was also introduced into the Nigerian School System to achieve one of the philosophies of Nigerian education as indicated in the National Policy on Education (2004) which is “the development of the individual into a sound and eective citizen”. The realization of this objective through social studies is possible since the subject is an integrated programme which is taught and learnt. Social studies looks at all aspects of the life of the child in the society. It is further stated in the National Policy on Education (2004) that the essence of education is to achieve the inculcation of national consciousness and national unity; the inculcation of the right type of values and attitudes for the survival of the individual and the Nigerian society. All these, according to Ezegbe (1994) involve the development of modern democratic values which are taught and learnt in social studies because of its broad based scope. The accomplishment of the purposes for which social studies was introduced in schools would depend to a large extent, not only on the availability of the right caliber of professionally trained social studies teaching personnel but also of the material resources available in schools for its teaching. Of the personnel involved in the development, implementation and evaluation of a curriculum, the teacher is the most important. Brown (1982) pointed out the vital role of the teacher in the curriculum process when he notes that: The curriculum can be a great success or a dismal failure, depending on the teachers. They are the key persons who alone can make the curriculum design achieve whatever it was designed to achieve… (pg. 19). No matter how strongly motivated a nation may be in desiring to provide education for its citizens irrespective of the financial resources ProjectTopic: ProjectInformation: ProjectDepartment: ProjectBody: 11/6/2019 SOCIAL STUDIES TEACHERS’ PERCEPTION ON THE USE OF COMMUNITY RESOURCES IN THE TEACHING/LEARNING OF SOCIAL … https://www.projectclue.com/education/project-topics-materials-for-undergraduate-students/social-studies-teachers-perception-on-the-use-of-community-reso… 2/10 and the good will, the eectiveness of the system ultimately depends on the quality of the teachers that operate it. It is the teacher who translates societal values and aspirations to practical lessons in the class. Several educators amongst who are Coombs (1970), Fafunwa (1974), Fayemi (1991) and Ukeje (1970) have written on the vital role of the teachers as implementers of the curriculum. According to them, whatever abilities are available, whatever content is presented for teaching, whichever kind of environment the school is situated and whatever kind of pupils are given to teach, the important and vital role of the teacher cannot be over-emphasized. Teachers represent a large proportion of the input of an educational system. Instructional materials are also educational inputs and they are of vital importance in the successful implementation of any curriculum. Relevant and appropriate textbooks, visual and audio-visual materials like globes, charts, slides, maps, tapes etc are of paramount necessities in the teaching and learning process. Audio-visual materials supplement and consolidate what is read in textbooks and journals. An important, but oen – neglected source of instructional material for eective teaching and learning of social studies is the community. No matter the nature, size and location of the community, there are various resources both human and non human which enhance the teaching and learning of social studies within and outside the classroom. Social studies as a broad discipline deals with the study of the activities of man in his physical and social environment (i.e how man influences the environment in which he lives and in turn examines the environmental effect on man). Consequently, the community becomes the laboratory for social studies teachers. A careful examination of the Nigeria primary and junior secondary school social studies curriculum would show that they are heavily loaded with topics and issues that are common in our communities. These could be historical, geographical, economic, social and cultural issues.
There is no better place than the local community for effective teaching and learning of social studies bearing in mind the nature and scope of the subject. The students can see at first hand the social processes and interactions. Social studies is about home, school, community functioning, work and government at the local level and about the explanation of these things at the national levels. Members of the students’ families can often be used as a resource. A parent may be able to describe his or her job when the class is studying community workers or the job market. There may be artifacts from different nations in the homes of the students that would be of interest to the class. Many teachers have found that these add sparkle to the class. Students are to be prepared to think constructively, to make judgment and decision, to analyze and criticize what they have learned and to affiliate themselves with these things when they become adult citizens of the community.