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THE CHALLENGES AND PROSPECTS OF TEACHING AND LEARNING VERBS IN SECONDARY SCHOOLS
This study is designed to investigate the challenges and prospects of teaching and learning verbs in secondary schools. The topic was built on the assumption that both the junior and senior secondary students are challenged when it comes to classifying and grouping the English verb groups.
Two secondary schools within Lagos were selected for the study. Questionnaires were distributed to the students and teachers in the selected schools. The responses were analyzed using simple statistical methods.
The study found out that indeed students do find it difficult to understand group the English verbs and also most grammar teachers are challenged when, it concerns teaching the English verbs to the students understanding.
Recommendations were made on how to improve the quality of the teachers already in the class room as well as those to be employed.
1.1 BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY
Human society can grow where there is growth of knowledge of which knowledge grows through education and research. So, the primary purpose of research is to contribute to the growth of ideas. Through research, new ideas are created and knowledge is increasingly enriched. A research work is a serious academics project which requires a high sense of responsibility, initiative, discipline, honesty and objectivity.
The research focuses on the challenges and prospects of teaching and learning of verbs in secondary schools. Abel Olaniyi (2012:58) sees research as reports of experimentation or investigation geared toward the discovery and interpretation of facts, revision of accepted theories or laws in the light of new facts, or practical application of such new or revised theories or laws.
Research appears to be making an increasing impact on our everyday lives. In public discussions today, the evidence of this fact is considered to be important. We are unlikely to accept authoritative statements without some explanation to prove the statement; As a result, we are in danger sometimes of being swamped by facts. The trouble is that the facts cannot always be trusted. Every profession requires its members to acquire certain specialized abilities and teaching is no exception (LUX, 1972).
Among the specialized abilities of a classroom teacher is to have some certain behaviors which promote both the teaching of the subject English language and the student's attitude in learning the word class "VERBS". Verbs as a word class are very important because they are the actions performed in a sentence.
Teacher's classroom Interactions can be analyzed in order to obtain information on how to be effective with regards to the teaching and learning process in the classroom and selection of teaching methods for which to develop and control their behavior in a continuing programme of self- development.
There is the need for using different methods in teaching different groups of students, For instance, in teaching the word class "Verbs" the teacher needs to make it an interactive class for the students, so, the demonstration method should be applied rather than the lecture method to make the subject easy to learn.
However the only way to find out the usefulness of the different methods is to observe their behavior in different ability levels, in selection of methodology of teaching the teacher has to bear in mind;
i. How should English language be taught?
ii. What teaching method would be suitable in the teaching of English language, Verbs in particular?
iii. What is the role of group discussion and classroom demonstration?
There are basically several methods of observing English verbs teachers, two of these are:
i. Interaction Analysis
ii. Topological Studies, that is, step by step observation based on record.
It is generally accepted that application and understanding of education events are essential to any analysis of educational process. Teachers should analyze their classroom interaction in order to obtain effective learning, especially, their own actions during the process of teaching and learning English verbs.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM.
For many years now, there have been expressed concerns about the problems laced by the most teachers in teaching English verbs and also most students who do not perform excellently in their English language especially in the word class, verbs, aspect in secondary schools. Such problems include:
Insufficient training, inadequate facilities, poor teaching techniques and inappropriate language communication skills. A.N Akwuanya(2009), Observed that the low performance of Nigerian students in English language both in terminal and secondary school certificate examinations has been worsening since the mid-1970s and it is often attributed to factors like:
i. Poor attitudes towards the second language
ii. Low investment in Education
iii. Poor training of teachers
iv. Lack of commitment among teachers
v. Poor teaching methods
It is in view of this that the research is carried out to find out the challenges and prospects of teaching and learning English verbs in secondary schools and at the end suggest possible sections for effective teaching and learning.
1.3 PURPOSE OF THE STUDY
The purpose of this study is:
i. To identify and examine the group of verbs as a word class.
ii. To high tight and examine the areas in which students are deficient in the verb class.
iii. To investigate the attitudes of the teachers towards the teaching of the verb class.
1.4 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
The following research questions would guide this study:
i. What are the inhibiting factors faced by students in identifying and discussing the various verb groups?
ii. What efforts are made by the students in tackling these problem areas in the study of the verb groups?
iii. How does the attitude of the English teachers affect the learning process?
1.5 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
Any venture into the problem of teaching and learning is a step further in the advancement of education, therefore, this study is expected to be of help to any English teacher who desires to teach English Grammar especially the "VERB" as ithelps in improving teaching and learning and also in putting the secondary students straight on the idea of the verb class.
Moreover, it would help in understanding the various problems affecting the teaching as well as the learning of verbs so as to proffer a solution to the problem as the future of our youths depends on the back ground we are able to provide for them.
1.6 SCOPE OF THE STUDY
For this research, we are limited to studying only verb groups and the challenge it poses in teaching and learning in secondary schools in Lagos State.
1.7 DELIMITATION OF THE STUDY.
This study cannot cover the whole of Lagos State due to time factor and financial constraints so; it would be limited to just two (2) secondary schools in Alimosho Local Government Area in Lagos State, Nigeria.
1.8 DEFINITION OF TERMS
VERB: - A verb from the Latin word ''Verbum'' meaning word is a part of speech that conveys an action E.g. bring, read, walk, run, learn, drive, an occurrence E.g. happen, become, or, a state of being E.g. be, exist, stand. In this study, it is the mostimportant.
TEACHER: - This is someone whose job it is to impact knowledge on learners.
TEACHING: - This is the activity of transferring body of knowledge to the students.
LEARNING: - This is the acquisition of knowledge or skills through experience, practice, or study or being taught.
LEARNER: - A learner is someone who learns from a teacher or takes up knowledge or beliefs.
ENGLISH: - A branch of the West Germanic Languages studied world over for effective communication.
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