1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Social Studies, for long has been regarded as an amalgam of all the social science subjects including humanities. The subject has become unwieldy to teach effectively, particularly in view of the government position that a new civic education curriculum be disarticulated from the subject. Therefore, social studies curriculum has been realigned to take cognizance of these challenges facing the subject as a core subject at basic education level. Effort has been made to redress the observed inadequacy by teaching the subject as a discipline that brings the reality of everyday societal living to students with the desire to making them acquire the knowledge, attitude, values and skills required to be responsible and discipline members of their society. The nature and objectives of Social Studies in Nigerian secondary schools emphasize students’ familiarity with their physical and social environment; improved social relationships and interactions; skills and ability to think reflectively, critically, creatively and independently. All these objectives are required in life- problem solving. As a totality of man’s experiences in the society and a problem – approach discipline, it becomes imperative to emphasize students’ active participation in the learning process (Akintola, 2000). Social Studies could be seen as a programme of study in our schools which is used to inculcate in the learners the knowledge, skills, attitude and actions considered important in human relationship in the society CESAC (2014). The basic education curriculum in social studies, apart from taking into consideration societal needs, has incorporated many of the contemporary issues of local and global concern such as youth unemployment and youth restiveness, environmental issues, drug abuse, family live education, security, peace and conflict issues including other aspects of the Seven- Point Agenda of the government. Social Studies is society bound. This requires that, its curriculum reflects the problems, yearning and aspiration of a given society. It is observed that, the nature of the problems and aspiration of the society as always determined the nature of social studies curriculum and of course, determines the purpose which the curriculum is out to serve. Probably, that is why Awoyemi (2012) opined that when we plan a social studies curriculum for any society, it must take the problem of that society into consideration. He stated further that, Nigeria for instance, has her problems which are not necessarily identical with the problems of other societies. It is essential therefore, that the social studies curriculum of Nigeria should take into consideration the peculiar problems of Nigeria among which is the problem of insecurity which has become an issue of national concern irrespective of cultural background. According to Technical Committee on Security (2008), security is conceptualized as the actual or potential freedom and safety from physical/military, political, economic, socio-cultural or psychological danger or attack. That is, it is the protection or defence of people against all kinds of victimization from external/military attack, economic want, poverty, illiteracy, disease/ill-health, political oppression, social exploitation, criminality, etc. And it is perceived in terms of the generality of the population i.e. the physical, political, economic, and social security of the average citizen rather than that of the government of the day and its officials. By implication, security is the condition which enhances the ability of government, its agencies, and its citizens to function without hindrance. Differently put, it implies the absence of threat to life, and property; encompasses the socio-economic well-being of the people; and enables co-existence in peace and harmony. Section 14  b of Chapter 2 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria captures the importance of security when it states that ―security and welfare of the people shall be the major aim of Government. Seen this way, security is a social contract between the state and its citizens in which the former is expected to protect, defend, and provide for the latter in the public arena. Various people such as Okiro (2008), Etim (2009), Adelugba, et. al (2008), and Odah (2009) have observed the unpalatable state of security of the Nigerian Nation which is highly lamentable and nothing to write home about. There has been growing insecurity, an increase in the incessant kidnapping incidents, the reigning cases of broad day-light robberies, hired assassination or political sponsored killings and the most recent attacks and religious crises in the north. In addition, there are the destructive demonstration of the militants in the pre- amnesty period and other grave problems besetting the country. The growing insecurity in the country has made the Nigerian government to come up with 7-Point Agenda in which human security is considered a critical infrastructure. In an attempt to provide adequate security, the Nigerian government provided 9- year basic education and realigned social studies curriculum. Illiteracy and innumeracy are forms of insecurity in themselves. So, the first and most immediate contribution of successful basic education and social studies curriculum is a direct reduction of one form of deep rooted insecurity. Second, it is believed that if basic school social studies is taught well, it can be very helpful in guiding individual to live effectively in the society (Iyewarun, 1989). It therefore becomes of paramount importance to bring about the type of basic school social studies and teaching that world reflect the areas that need to be addressed. The areas are the values that need to be emphasised and the problems to solve in our society constitute the security. One of the viable means of reducing this society’s problem is the realignment of the basic school social studies curriculum.
1.2. STATEMENT OF THE GENERAL PROBLEM
Much has been learned through the arena of educational research since the Civil Defence strategies were in place decades ago. A key finding was “fear” is not necessarily the best way to promote learning and using pedagogy for learning is a better strategy since there are multiple ways children learn. (Wisner, 2006; Wachtendorf, Brown & Nickle, 2008) The previous implementation of the civil defence program for schools across the country was sponsored by the federal government and would allow for the a new and updated curriculum developed with pedagogical theory to prepare our school aged children for an all hazards approach to disasters with age appropriate materials, lesson plans, small group projects, and exercises. (Wachtendorf, et al., 2008). Emergency preparedness, homeland security, life safety, and disaster risk reduction educational programs taught in primary and secondary schools is not a new concept and can lead to resiliency in our young school age children. If allowed to develop these types of curricula, the schools would be a major force in developing a resilient Nigeria, as desired through multiple government sponsored documents, while preparing our children for the inevitable disaster whether man-made or natural. Although collaboration, coordination, training, and exercises are discussed within each of the documents in order to achieve a resilient America, there is no mention of education, either formal or informal. Developing an educational component or curriculum in emergency preparedness, homeland security, or overall disaster risk reduction should be a priority in order to attempt to achieve the goal of resiliency. Absent from all of the documents is a large and potentially critical group of people who are generally a “captive audience” on a daily basis throughout the nation. The Kindergarten through Twelfth grade (K-12) educational sector, which is very large with approximately twenty percent of the United States population (U.S. Census, 2012), is critically important due to the sheer numbers of students and should be included within this framework and discussion for developing resiliency throughout the United States. The development of a curriculum for a K-12 environment in emergency preparedness, homeland security, or disaster risk reduction could be a potential solution to develop a resilient Nigeria by starting with our young school aged children. The long term implications would provide for K-12 students learning about disasters, natural and man-made, as a normal part of an overall educational program and would also solve an immediate need since we would be educating one of our most vulnerable populations, children, who generally suffer disproportionately during a disaster.
1.3. AIMS AND OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
The major aim of the study is to evaluate teacher’s perceived instructional strategies for teaching securities and safety concept in basic education social studies curriculum. Other specific objectives are as follows;
1. To examine the various perspectives of the basic school social studies teachers on the present social studies curriculum and security concept in Nigeria.
2. To examine the extent to which security is adequately taken care of in the present basic school social studies curriculum.
3. To examine the extent in which teaching and learning strategies accommodate a variety of perceptual preferences in order to promote security and safety.
4. To examine the content that should be included in the basic school social studies curriculum to cater for security and safety.
5. To examine how security should be addressed in the basic school social Studies curriculum.
6. To recommend comprehensive strategies that can be used for teaching securities and safety concept in basic education social studies curriculum.
1.4. RESEARCH QUESTIONS
1. What are the various perspectives of the basic school social studies teachers on the present social studies curriculum and security concept in Nigeria?
2. To what extent is security adequately taken care of in the present basic school social studies curriculum?
3. What is the extent in which teaching and learning strategies accommodate a variety of perceptual preferences in order to promote security and safety.
4. What are the content that should be included in the basic school social studies curriculum to cater for security and safety?
5. How should security be addressed in the basic school social Studies curriculum?
6. What are the recommended comprehensive strategies that can be used for teaching securities and safety concept in basic education social studies curriculum?
1.5. RESEARCH HYPOTHESIS
H0: There is no significant effect of teachers perceived instructional strategies for teaching security and safety concept in basic education.
H1: There is significant effect of teachers perceived instructional strategies for teaching security and safety concept in basic education.
1.6. SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
The inclusion of security in the teaching of social studies has been on the agenda of curriculum reform in Nigeria for at least three decades. A variety of topics that did not exist before the adoption of the agenda, have surfaced. Teaching of security is a fundamental necessity for Nigeria, which is ensuring pluralism, tolerance, multiculturalism, and the spread of democratic values. Young Nigerians today know less and care less about what is going on in the world than young students of previous generations. At the same time, the contemporary Nigerian society is characterized by differences of opinion arising from conflicts and values due to the various events that are taking place nowadays in the Middle East, in general, and Nigeria, in particular. Through social studies, teachers can raise students’ interest in and awareness of the stories making news headlines. Needless to say that social studies domain is robust with many historic and current safety/security issues. The focus of this study is to uncover the social studies teachers’ point of view in relation to incorporating contemporary safety/security issues in the classrooms of the middle basic cycle. It explores all the circumstances surrounding the instructional strategies and the major constraints many teachers feel in tackling safety/security issues. Therefore, this study provides significant implications and practice for teachers, educators, school principals, parents, and curriculum reform and innovation. It also provides an argument with supporting empirical evidence that teachers perceived instructional strategies for teaching securities and safety concept in basic education social studies curriculum can be significantly approved.
1.7. SCOPE OF THE STUDY
The study is restricted to teacher’s perceived instructional strategies for teaching securities and safety concept in basic education social studies curriculum: case study of Olamaboro L.G.A, Kogi State.
1.8 LIMITATION OF STUDY
Financial constraint- Insufficient fund tends to impede the efficiency of the researcher in sourcing for the relevant materials, literature or information and in the process of data collection (internet, questionnaire and interview).
Time constraint- The researcher will simultaneously engage in this study with other academic work. This consequently will cut down on the time devoted for the research work.
1.8 DEFINITION OF TERMS
TEACHING: Teaching is the process of attending to people’s needs, experiences and feelings, and making specific interventions to help them learn particular things.
Instructional strategies: Are primarily a medium for delivery of content; the teacher reiterates and builds on the content. Curriculum is defined by the content of the textbook; the teacher's job is to teach the textbook.
Security: Security is freedom from, or resilience against, potential harm from external forces. Beneficiaries (technically referents) of security may be persons and social groups, objects and institutions, ecosystems, and any other entity or phenomenon vulnerable to unwanted change by its environment.
Safety: Relative freedom from danger, risk, or threat of harm, injury, or loss to personnel and/or property, whether caused deliberately or by accident.
Social Studies: A part of a school or college curriculum concerned with the study of social relationships and the functioning of society and usually made up of courses in history, government, economics, civics, sociology, geography, and anthropology.