This study examines the effectiveness of fieldwork in the teaching and learning of geography in secondary schools in Ondo West Local Government Area of Ondo State. This study was carried out in 10 secondary schools in the study area: one hundred and twenty Students and ten teachers were used as the sampling size of the study. Questionnaire method was used to gather data: The study also examines the attitude of students and teachers towards fieldwork and examined whether fieldwork as a component of geography is a regular exercise in secondary school or not. Findings show that fieldwork is important in the teaching and learning of geography, this is because it simplifies learning and gives students sound knowledge of natural and human phenomena. However, fieldwork is constrained by many factors such as economic, political and social factors. Recommendation were made that schools and teachers should be encourage to go on fieldwork, that fund should be provided by government, school and parents in other to embark on successful fieldwork exercise.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Geography as asocial science has to do with the relationships between man and his environment. This implies that geography is not an abstract subject; it deals with what can be seen, felt and experimented. It also deals with the inter action of man with his social, physical, natural and human environment.
Historically,geographyhadcomeundersomanydivisionsbasedondifferentschoolofthoughtandgeographers.However,followingimprovementsonworks in the 15th century,geographerandnaturalistBernhardVerneussuggestedthatgeographybedividedintothreeseparatebranches:thefirstdealswithformsanddimensionsoftheearth,thesecondrelatestotides,climates,seasonsandothervariablesthatdependsonrelativespositionoftheearthintheuniverse,and the third deals with comparative studies of particular regions of the globe. New or modern aspects of geography are Geographic Information System(GIS) and Remote Sensing.
1.2 background to the study
Everysciencesubjecthasitslaboratorywhereitcarriesoutobservationbyitsspecializedmethodandwhereitcollects‘factual’informationaboutthecharacteristicsofphenomenawhichitstudies-the laboratory also is where the subject or entire discipline ever ifies its conclusion for neither validation nor rejection of its guiding hypothesis or theories. The laboratory of geography is the field. And this is
Why field study is crucial to learning geography. Atthemacro-level,geographicfieldcoincideswiththeplanetitselftogetherwithitscomponents.Atthemoremanageablelevelthefieldofgeographicalstudyisanysub-unitofthemacro-erritorycomplexwhichadequatelyservesascontrol areafortheproblembeinginvestigated.Itisthefieldthatprovidestheprimary or first-hand data for geographical studies.
“Field working geography is a planned and guided tour of a given place, to observe, measure, inquire and collect information about some phenomena and arrive at a meaningful description, comparisons, relationship and inferences ”Areola (1978:91). It involves a close examination and analysis in the field of a place of a country, showing one or more aspect of area differentiation.
Rogers and Vilies (1994:182) defined field work as any teaching exercise outside the classroom. It involve students learning and outside the classroom by observing, questioning, planning, collecting, recording, evaluating, representing, analyzing, concluding, communicating, reflecting and responding.
Field work is fundamental to the study of geography because it makes the subject come alive, promote enthusiasm and motivate students. Geography teachers who participate in field work exercise make teacher and students engage in and develop a deep understanding of geographical process and enquiry. Field work makes teaching effective and understanding of geography easy especially in secondary schools.
Gold and Jenkins (1991:21) regards field work as a vital instrument for understanding our world through direct experience. They also see it as a basis for gathering basic data about the world and as a fundamental method acquiring
Field work also facilitates the collection of local level information that is not available through secondary source. Field work also help to understand theoretical concept better, it help to develop an understanding of the culture and the people of field area. Field work is enjoyable and gives student a great memorable experience.
It also provides an avenue for the development of an enquiring mind.
1.3 statement of the problem
The research work is carried out to conduct a survey on the effective use of field work as a teaching method in the teaching and learning of geography in Nigeria using some selected secondary schools in Ondo West Local Government Area as a
Students are losing interest in studying geography as a discipline. This trend has been attributed to several reasons but most important are inadequate teaching aids, wide scope and poor teaching. This could be arrested if teachers embrace field work in teaching and learning of geography.
1.4 Aim and Objective
The aim of this study is to investigate the effectiveness of field work as a teaching method in teaching and learning of geography in Ondo West Local Government Area. To achieve this, the specific objective to be pursued includes;
1. Examine the attitude of students and teachers towards field work
2. To establish whether field work as a component of geography is implemented in secondary schools or not
3. To investigate the procedures followed by teachers when undertaking fieldwork
4. Identify the importance attached to field work in secondary schools
5. Determine the problems associated with field work.
1.5 Significance of the Study
The findings of this study will be of great importance to teachers and students on the effectiveness of field work as at each in method in geography. It will also help teachers to know how field work is used to teach some topics effectively.
The study also investigates the view of teachers and students towards the use of field work in geography education in secondary schools. It will expose researchers to the immense advantages of using field work method. The study will expose teachers to the effective and efficient teaching of some difficult concepts in geography.
Finally, the study reviews the development and current position of field work in geography in secondary schools in Ondo West Local Government Area of Ondo State.
1.6 Research Questions
The researcher makes the following statements /questions to carry out the investigation and findings.
1. What are the attitude of teachers and students towards fieldwork?
2. Is fieldwork as component of geography implemented in secondary schools or not?
3. What are the procedures followed by teachers when undertaking a fieldwork?
4. Are school administrators showing enough support during fieldworks?
5. Are parents showing enough support for fieldwork exercise?
1.7 Scope of the Study
This study covers ten selected secondary schools in Ondo West Local Government Area. It focuses on the effectiveness of fieldwork as a teaching method in teaching and learning of geography in Ondo West Local Government Area of Ondo state.
1.8 Definition of Terms
1. FIELD: This is defined as any place where supervised learning can take place via first-hand experience, outside the constraints of the four walls of the classroom settings
2. FIELDWORK: Research or study that is done outside the classroom or laboratory especially by students to observe and study something and its location
3. LEARNING: The act of gaining knowledge from reading or teaching
4. TEACHING METHOD: This is the strategies or approaches teachers use to achieve the desire objective.
5. ENTHUSIASM: A strong feeling of excitement and interest in something and a desire to be involved in it.