Background of the Study
English is believed to be the language of the people of England. It is said to have originated from the Jute, Angles and Saxon who are the early settlers in Britain. It is part of the Germanic branch of the Indo European language family. At the initial state, English was confined to Britain alone. Later, it developed and spread to other parts of the world. It spread to Asia, Germany, Africa and other continents as a native language, second language or foreign language. Progressively, the English Language has spread virtually all over the world Azi (2009). He stressed further that, English throughout the world has become significant everyday language. It is a global and widely distributed medium of instruction and communication. It has a prestigious official status and has acquired a constitutionally endorsed legal right. It has gained explicit recognition which has established it as a medium of administration, education, international relations, commerce and law. Throughout the world, the English language is very important.
In Nigeria, English is a second language and a lingua-franca. This means that it is the language for communication, economy, national pride, law, press, trade and instruction. As a language of instruction, it is an essential prerequisite for an advancement and career succession in the country. It means a lot in the life and progress of a child as it is a key subject with profound influence on all the school subjects. English is used in the Senior Secondary Schools as core school subject. It is a solid foundational course. The key elements of the course are designed to cover the basic four language skills which are: listening, reading, speaking and writing. It is expected that after learning these skills in Senior Secondary School, the students who choose to work can use the language fluently while those who wish to go further can be proficient in the language. According to Ekene (1999), the teachers are to integrate the key elements of the language experiences in schools. English at this stage tends to receive more critical attention. Ekene further posits that the professional teacher of English is one who has been trained or has trained himself to do a competent work. The teacher should at least possess a college major in English or a strong minor. He must have deep interest in literature and a solid knowledge of the language skills. Moreover, he has to acquire strong skill in the handling of the Audio Visual materials and educational problems. The emphasis here lies on training and qualification of the teachers.
According to (Anzaku, 2011) “the term audio-visual materials are commonly used to refer to those instructional materials that may be used to convey meaning without complete dependence upon verbal symbols or language”. Thus according to the above definition, a text book or a reference material does not fall within this grouping of instructional materials but an illustration in a book does. Some audio-visual components are in the nature of process and experience, for example, dramatizing an event or a procedure or making diorama. Some of the audio-visual materials like the motion pictures require the use of equipment to release their latent value. Some do not need equipment at all like an exhibit or a study print. This term designates in common usage both material things as well as processes such as field trips. Anzaku further stated that audio-visual materials include materials and equipment alike, that materials are considered to be system, or body of content of potential value when put to work, while equipment or instructions, often referred to as hardware, components, are the means of presenting such content. The importance of audio-visual materials in the teaching and learning processes cannot be over emphasized.
Some of the roles of audio-visual materials are; Basing learning in sense experience, Extending experience ,Encouraging participation, Stimulating interest ,Individualizes instructions, Serves as a source of information, Making leaning permanent, Basing learning in sense experience: stressing the importance of audio-visual materials, ( Ngozi, Samuel, and Isaac, 2012) unanimously agreed that audio-visual materials are very important and useful in education because, the normal learner in so far as the functions of his preceptor mechanisms are concerned, gains understanding in terms of multiple impression recorded through the eye, ear, touch and other series. This is to say that audio-visual materials are the equipment through which that function can occur, that is does not occur in isolation, rather through a balance pattern from any preceptor mechanism that are stimulated by external occurrences.
The subject English Language as a multidimensional discipline in the Nigerian school curriculum has got few text books on it with some marked specifications of teaching aids for illustrations. In some cases, directives and exercises for students as well as for teachers are not given, while in few cases such exercises and instructional guides are not given at all, this quite often than not lead to the learning of just some specified concept in an integrated curriculum. Many teachers hold the notion that English Language is a simple subject that requires little if any, preparation. To them, teaching English Language involves merely talking to students about a given topic as may be taken from text books or a more look at some pictures. (Talabi, 2004).
This is sometimes followed by some discussion and students may ask questions afterwards, about what they have learnt. They may draw pictures themselves of what has been discussed and that is all. English Language teaching is more than these that is why adequate teaching aids are needed in teaching the subject at any level of education. Moreover, the methods require in the teaching of English Language such as inquiry, discussion, Role-playing simulation (both activity and historical) demand a lot of preparation on the part of teachers and students alike. In order to communicate effectively or elicit the desired responses, there is the need to employ different ways and means (audio-visual aids) which will appeal to most if not all the senses of the person receiving the message.
The requirement needed by the teacher to make effective teaching is resourcefulness. Aguekobuo, (2004) is of the view that, way to do this is for the teacher to engage in human capacity building which will involve the use of variety of strategies and techniques in his/her teaching. For these reasons English Language teachers need to be acquainted with all the audio-visual aids that will help optimally teaching and learning process. It has also been observed that the use of verbalization method of teaching English Language over the years has not made the subject very interesting. Agu and Hammad (2005), state that, the performance of students has been very low. In fact the need for effective teaching and learning of the subject cannot be over emphasized. Agu, and Hammad, (2005) further observed that, teachers still use mainly traditional method of teaching which lead to poor students` understanding and performance of the subject. Abolade (2009) posits that English Language like other subjects, can be effectively taught by employing various Audio-visual aids that appeal to three senses sight, touch and hearing. Among the numerous possible factors affecting teaching and learning in our schools are the poor teaching strategies. Abolode, (2009) further stated that study have shown that out of the five (5) sense organs we use for acquiring knowledge, visual materials which are learning and instructional materials that can be seen only taken up to 80% in the learning process, while Audio materials and equipment that appeal to our sense of hearing takes 11% and olfactory, tactile and tasting takes 9%.
Therefore, it is stated that Audio-visual instructional materials have made qualitative and quantitative education more meaningful because they have produced desirable results. However, this subject does not seem to be receiving serious attention from all concerned, namely; students, teachers, sponsors of education and educational administrators/managers to mention but a few. These materials have value for instruction and present in different variants and qualities today. The uses of audio-visual materials have been discovered to facilitate effective communication transfer of information, knowledge skills, attitudes and other useful capabilities. Teachers should know that the resources for learning that instructor and students will use can influence the effectiveness of instructional programme. Audio visual materials could be said to be the various method, or devices used to disseminate information in the teaching and learning process, which the English Language teachers need to use to enhance the students better understanding of cultural, means of transportation system and conflict situations in Nigeria. However, lack of adequate and appropriate audio-visual materials essentially for the effective teaching and learning of the subject is rather making parents, teachers and students to perceive the integrated English Language in the school curriculum throughout the country with confusion and perplexity. It is against this background that the researcher tends to investigate the extent of the use of audio-visual materials in the teaching and learning of English Language in senior secondary schools in Ado Local Government Areas of Ekiti State.
Statement of the Problem
Asuquo (2007) says, “Education is the greatest weapon for self-confidence civilization”. She further says that most students of our secondary schools are faced with poor self-confidence and wrong oral expression in pronunciation of English words. An average child has a problem of mother-tongue sounds interfering with spoken English because he/she starts to speak and learn the language of his/her environment before learning the English as a second language. The child is faced with the pronunciation problem which is as a result of mother-tongue influence on the second language acquisition (Kutigi, Gambari and Gana 2010).
In teaching and learning, visual aids materials have been a triumphant entry, bringing benefits to both teachers and students. This makes it essential for every teacher and students’ to be familiar with the topic taught through the use of materials which the students can hear and see things for themselves. Several researchers in Nigeria have investigated into the use of instructional materials in teaching and learning. Unfortunately, most of the English Language teachers neglect the use of audio-visual aids in teaching the subject. Probably due to non-availability of the materials or lack of techniques for using them. It is against this background that this study is aimed at finding out the extent of the use of audio-visual materials in the teaching and learning of English Language and the effect on academic performance in senior secondary schools in Ado Local Government Area of Ekiti State