Background of the Study
In Nigeria, the government pronouncement and activities geared towards encouraging secondary school students to study the science abound. Towards this development, the Nigeria Educational Research and Development Council (NERDC) was mandated to develop science curricula for use in Junior Secondary education and indeed all levels of educational system in Nigeria. In line with government declaration for Universal Basic Education Programme, The NERDC was directed by the National Council on Education (NCE) to re-structure and re-alignthe existing Junior secondary school science curricula to meet the target of the Nine (9) year Basic Educationwhich seeks to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDG). The curriculum reflects depth, appropriateness, and interrelatedness of the science curricula contents. Since the curricula represents the total experience to which learners must be exposed, the contents, performance objectives, activities and instructional materials were provided. Instructional materials referto materials that are used to facilitate teaching and learning. It enables the teacher communicate ideas or concepts with ease as they appeal to many senses at a time (Munchi 2008).
Education is a preparation for life, this is related to the acquisition of skills to earn a living. Today as always, the definition of education is the ever change and increasing in scope. Our schools are confronted with new pressures arising from changing needs with students; societal expectation, economic changes and technological advancement are to look into.
Effective teaching of any subject will not stimulates student’s interest in the subject but also enhance their achievement in the examination. To achieve effective teaching and learning process, there is the need for use of instructional materials. Instructional materials are the different teaching aids or apparatus which a classroom teacher employs to facilitate his or her teaching for the achievement of the stated objective. Agun (2012) defined instructional materials as those materials which are helpful to the teachers and students and which maximize learning in various areas. The use of instructional materials in teaching basic science is very important because it provides a concrete basis for conceptual thinking motivates people to learn and captures pupil’s imagination if used correctly (Ajalla, 2007). The cognitive domain of learning involves knowledge and the development of intellectual skills. It includes the recognition of specific facts, procedural patterns and concepts that serve in the development of abilities and skills achievement test is a test given at the end of find out the extent to which a student has achieved something, acquired certain information or mastered certain skill as a result of planned instruction or training. The importance of instructional materials in teaching basic science especially at the primary and junior secondary school cannot be over emphasized considering its effect on the development of intellectual skills on the students.
Instructional materials are all the tools which are needed by the teacher to provide help and encouragement to pupils’ learning activities (Ema and Ajayi, 2004). In the words of Onyejemezi in Eya and Ureme (2011), instructional materials are resources or teaching materials, which a teacher utilizes in the course of presenting a lesson in order to make the content of the lesson understandable to the learners. The implication is that the use of instructional materials is inevitable if effective teaching and learning must be achieved. Instructional materials range from home made devices to sophisticated machines and also people who assist the teacher in disseminating knowledge and information to help learners learn meaningfully (Ololobou, 2008). Since the sense organs of pupils are gateways to learning, materials provide learners the opportunity to become actively involved intellectually, perceptually and physically in the instructional process (Jekayinfa, 2005). The National Teachers Institute (NTI) teacher training manual quoted in Ololobou (2008), categorized instructional materials into print materials, audio-materials, audio-visuals, static/displays and electronic materials. The materials are derived from various sources, including collection of items from the community, improvised materials by teachers and pupils, distribution of materials by government and non-governmental organizations, donations from various agencies and creation of resource centres. Any effective utilization of instructional materials, requires the instructional process to be organized with a combination of people, materials, facilities and equipment for the realization of stated objectives. To ensure quality instructional delivery for the benefit of both teacher and learner, basic education requires the appropriate use of a judicious mix of both print, audio, visual, audio-visual and other materials. These materials include; textbooks, journals, magazines, periodicals, wall charts, posters, pictures, maps, globes, filmstrips, slides, projectors, graphs, radio, tape-recorders and televisions. (Adebule, 2008;Okam,2013). Some of the mentioned materials like pictures, posters, charts and globes appeal to the sense of sight (visuals), while some like television, films and slide projector are audio visuals, as they appeal to both sense of sight and hearing. Garba (2004), affirms that material resources help bridge the gap between reality and the abstract. For effective instructional delivery, the teacher is encouraged and expected to effectively utilize relevant instructional materials. Such materials make the teaching and learning process more interesting, more effective, more lively, appealing to the learner, instructional delivery simpler and easier.
Statement of Problem
The relevance of education in any society cannot be understand. It is regarded as the single potent factor that leads to the improvement of the individual as well as society. The need to provide basic formal education to all schools whether public or private sector in Odogbolu Local Government Area is therefore a paramount social responsibility. The question of how credible the students, teachers, education programmed is in terms of effectiveness and appropriateness of instructional materials has remained a major issue of interest to many people
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