PART 2: THE EFFECT OF GAMES AND SIMULATIONS METHODS ON ACADEMIC ACHIEVEMENT OF J.S.S.2 (junior secondary school class 2) MATHEMATICS IN NIGERIA

The questions in my previous blog post on this topic, could not be answered without students being engaged in authentic learning. Authentic learning requires the learner to ammunicate an in-depth understanding of a problem or issues rather than memorize sets of isolated facts and it our result in achievements that have relevance beyond school (Bettina T.O and Lankard T.O, 1997). Therefore, for authentic learning to take place in mathematics, method or style of teaching needs to be innovative.

Adewuyi (2001) noted that the style of teaching employed by teachers is a potent factor in motivating learners to learn. According to him, mathematics is subject, which is very easy to make difficult and very difficult to make easy. The perennial methods of teching mathematics through listening, looking and learning have not been successfull and if anything, it has resulted in making students dislike mathematics. Akinsola, 2002).

Coudron (1997) as stated in Akinsoka (2002) offers the following suggestions to teachers for targeting instruction to individuals.

– Focus on outcomes rather than technique.

– Make learning experiential.

Give students control over their own learning.

– Respect learners ability to engage in parallel thinking.

– Highlight key point.

– Motivate Learner.

– Provide Challenges.

The suggestions above might not be possible using a single instructional strategy or style. So a combination of strategies might be required. Providing motivational environment, challenging and making learning experiential, demand active participation by students.

Simulation-game instructional strategy might be an antidote. The present situation of mathematics at all levels of education more especially the secondary school nowadays is becoming very deplorable. Most students prefer art subjects instead of mathematics. Obodo (1997) stated that performance of students in mathematigcs is at a very poor state.

It’s on this basis of problem facing Nigeria students in learning mathematics that i chose this topic “the study of the effect of games and simulations on the academic achievement of J.S.S.2 mathematics”.

Methods of approaches used by the teachers in presenting their lessons. Morris, Randel, Wetzel and White Hill (1992) pointed out that game significantly improved learning in a computerized drill and practice mathematics lesson for third to sixth graders over those who did not have the game opportunity, even though the game playing students did fewer exercises because teachers who used the game to teach did not cover enough ground as teachers who did other wise. Considering the way many students learn mathematics, it’s absolutely nothing to write home about. That is why Adenira (1993) observed that teachers struggle to teach mathematics against the nature of children; hence the children does up disliking mathematics. He stressed further that the traditional learning method of memorization has done much harm to the learning of mathematics. Therefore if a child is asked of what if learnt after one month if may not be able to recall the information.

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