SKILLS REQUIRED BY AGRICULTURAL SCIENCE TEACHERS FOR EFFECTIVE MANAGEMENT OF SCHOOL FARMS IN SECONDARY SCHOOLS IN ANAMBRA STATE

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TABLE OF CONTENT

Title Page      —          —          —          —          —          —          —          —          —          i

Approval Page          —          —          —          —          —          —          —          —          ii

Certification              —          —          —          —          —          —          —          —          iii

Dedication                 —          —          —          —          —          —          —          —          iv

Acknowledgement   —          —          —          —          —          —          —          —          v

Table of Contents    —          —          —          —          —          —          —          —          vi

List of Tables            —          —          —          —          —          —          —          —          viii

Abstract                      —          —          —          —          —          —          —          —          ix

CHAPTER ONE: INTRODUCTION         —          —          —          —          —          1

Background of the Study   —          —          —          —          —          —          1

Statement of the Problem               —          —          —          —          —          5

Purpose of the Study          —          —          —          —          —          —          7

Significance of the Study               —          —          —          —          —          7

Research Questions           —          —          —          —          —          —          9

Hypotheses   —          —          —          —          —          —          —          —          9

Delimitation of the —            —          —          —          —          —          —          —          10

CHAPTER TWO: REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE     —          —          11

Theory and Conceptual Framework of the Study          —          —          11

Skills in planning required for effective management

of school farm           —          —          —          —          —          —          —          23

Skills in organising required for effective functioning of the

school farm   —          —          —          —          —          —          —          —          31

Skills in directing required for effective school farm operations —      36

Skills in controlling required for effective functioning of

school farm activities           —          —          —          —          —          —          39

Skills required for evaluating students’ performance in the

management of school farm          —          —          —          —          —          48

Review of Related Empirical Studies       —          —          —          —          55

Summary of Literature Review      —          —          —          —          —          59

CHAPTER THREE: METHODOLOGY   —          —          —          —          —          61

Design of the Study            —          —          —          —          —          —          61

Area of the Study     —          —          —          —          —          —          —          61

Population and Sample of the Study       —          —          —          —          61

Instrument for Data Collection      —          —          —          —          —          62

Reliability of the Instrument           —          —          —          —          —          62

Validation of the Instrument          —          —          —          —          —          63

Method of Data Collection             —          —          —          —          —          63

Method of Data Analysis    —          —          —          —          —          —          64

CHAPTER FOUR: PRESENTATION AND ANALYSIS OF DATA   —          66

Research Question 1          —          —          —          —          —          —          66

Research Question 2          —          —          —          —          —          —          67

Research Question 3          —          —          —          —          —          —          68

Research Question 4          —          —          —          —          —          —          69

Research Question 5          —          —          —          —          —          —          70

Hypothesis 1             —          —          —          —          —          —          —          71

Hypothesis 2             —          —          —          —          —          —          —          72

Hypothesis 3             —          —          —          —          —          —          —          73

Hypothesis 4             —          —          —          —          —          —          —          76

Findings of the Study         —          —          —          —          —          —          78

Discussion of Research Findings            —          —          —          —          —          86

Findings of the Hypotheses          —          —          —          —          —          90

Discussion of Findings of the Hypotheses–      —          —          —          91

CHAPTER FIVE:

              SUMMARY, CONCLUSION, AND RECOMMENDATION                 94

Restatement of the Problem          —          —          —          —          —          94

Purpose of the Study          —          —          —          —          —          —          95

Summary of Procedures Used      —          —          —          —          —          95

Major Findings of the Study           —          —          —          —          —          96

Conclusion              —           —          —          —          —          —          —          97

Implications of the Study    —          —          —          —          —          —          97

Limitation of the Study        —          —          —          —          —          —          98

Recommendations —           —          —          —          —          —          —          98

Suggestion for Further Studies     —          —          —          —          —          99

References             —           —          —          —          —          —          —          100

Appendices             —          —          —          —          —          —          106

LIST OF TABLES

1:                     Mean Ratings of the Responses of male and female agricultural science teachers on the skills in planning required for effective management of school farm in secondary schools in Anambra State

2:                     Mean Ratings of the Responses of male and female agricultural science teachers on the skills in planning required for organising the school farm in secondary schools in Anambra State

3:                     Mean Ratings of the Responses male and female agricultural science teachers on the skills in planning required for directing the school farm operation in secondary schools in Anambra State

4:                     Mean Ratings of the Responses of male and female agricultural

5:                     Mean Ratings of the Responses male and female agricultural science teachers on the skills required evaluating school farm management

6:                     t-test Analysis of the mean ratings of the responses of male and female agricultural science teachers on the skills required for planning management

7:                     t-test Analysis of the mean ratings of the responses of male and female agricultural science teachers on the skills required for organising the school farm

8:                     t-testAnalysis of the mean ratings of the responses of male and female agricultural science teachers on the skills required for directing the school farm operations

9:                     t-testAnalysis of the mean ratings of the responses of male and female agricultural science teachers on the skills required for controlling the school farm activities

Abstract

This study is focused on the identification of skills required by Agricultural Science teachers for effective farm management in secondary schools in Anambra State. Five research questions were posed in conformity with the purpose of the study. Four null hypotheses were formulated and tested at 0.05 level of significance at relevant degrees of freedom. The study made use of survey research design. A structured questionnaire was generated from the literature reviewed and developed for the study. The questionnaire was face validated by three experts from the Department of Vocational Teacher Education, University of Nigeria, Nsukka. The reliability of the instrument and its sub-scales were determined using Cronbach’s alpa reliability coefficient. The reliability coefficient for the instrument was 0.91 while that of sub-scales were 0.87 for skills in planning in school farm, 0.96 for skills in organizing school farm, 0.89 for skills in directing school farm operations, 0.93 for skills in controlling school farm and 0.90 for evaluating students’ performance in the farm. The data were collected from 445 agricultural science teachers in secondary schools in Anambra State using the same instrument. The data collected were analysed using mean and standard deviations to answer the research questions, while the t-test statistics was used in testing the hypotheses. The findings from the study revealed that eleven (11) planning skills were required in management of school farm, nine (9) organizing skills were required in the operation of school farm, sixteen (16) directing skills were required in school farm management, eleven (11) controlling skills were required in the activities of the school farm and seven (7) evaluating skills were required for evaluating student’s performance in the school farm. The result of the null hypotheses tested revealed that there was no significant difference in the mean rating of the responses of the groups of respondents on skills required by Agricultural Science teachers for effective management of school farms. It was recommended that Faculties of Education in universities and other institutions involved in teacher preparation should incorporate specific practical farm management skills identified into their training programmes in order to equip the would-be teachers with the skills for good performance after graduation.

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

Background of the Study

Agricultural Science is a pre-vocational subject in the junior and senior secondary schools respectively. The objective of this subject is to provide basic knowledge and skills that will prepare students either to perform in an occupation or to make a career in the chosen subject (FGN, 2004).

For the students to acquire the skills in agriculture, opportunity has to be provided for them to practice the skills they are taught in an environment that is relevant to the job skills learnt. In the study of sciences in schools, science laboratories are provided where students are taught the practical aspects of the subject as in integrated science laboratory in junior secondary schools just as there are physics, chemistry and biology laboratories in the senior secondary classes. Thus, the school farm is a laboratory for theteaching of agricultural science in the schools.

According to Osinem (2004) it is a miniature pilot farm where scientific findings, and innovations can be tried thoroughly and adjustments made before feedback is sent to researchers for improvement. The importance of school farm in skill development and acquisition of basic entry skills cannot be over-stressed. Olaitan and Ogbazi (1988) in support of the above stated that school farm provides an environment where theoretical aspects of agriculture taught in the classroom in respect of improved knowledge, skill and practices in agricultural production are tried out and put into real life situation.

The school farm is also recognized as a laboratory for teaching agricultural practical lessons. It means that students are supposed to possess skills required to its effective utilization to entry level skills in school farm management. A study by Agbulu (1998) on the utilization of school farms for improvement of the teaching of agricultural science in Benue State found that the school farms were not utilized for improving the teaching of agricultural science teachers. The findings also revealed that teachers taught only the theoretical aspects of the subject in the classroom.

This undoubtedly, is contrary to the improvement of agricultural education, which is greatly needed at this period for the development of the students (Okorie, 2001). Even though the school farm has been perceived as very important for imparting manipulative skills to students it requires effective management to do this and relevant skills required by the agricultural science teachers to manage the farm effectively. Skills is defined by Winfield (1983) as any series of mental or physical acts executed in a such a way as to demonstrate complete control by the executor. Skill can also be said to be amanual dexterity learned through repetitive performance of a task. It is anestablished habit or a way of doing a particular job (Okorie, 2000).

In the context of the management of school farm, skill can be regarded as expertise or accuracy in carrying out tasks and activities that lead to efficiency or perfections in the performance of farm functions. The school farm is a laboratory for agricultural classes and for it to function effectively, it has to be well managed.

Management in this context is defined as the process of planning, organizing, directing, controlling and evaluating activities in the farm to achieve specific objectives.

These objectives include:

  1. To demonstrate appropriate practices
  2. To provide valuable experiences to students
  3. To provide opportunities for co-ordinating classroom theory with
  4. To conduct some experiments.

In their own view Thieurauf and Collins (2000) saw management as a process of allocating an organization’s input (human and material resource) through planning, organizing, directing and controlling for the purpose of accomplishing organizational objectives. In his opinion Ojukwu (1992) defined farm management as a skillful treatment towards crop and livestock production as well as the art of controlling the resources of producing crops and livestock.

Osuaia (2000) explained the expected management practice needed by an entrepreneur (just like it affects agricultural science teachers) as:

Planning: Deciding what work to be done and plan to accomplish it.

Organizing: Deciding how the work is to be divided and co-ordinated.

Staffing: Ensuring that there are sufficient personnel to carry out the work.

Directing: Motivating students to perform leading them towards a goal achievement and informing them about their assignments. Controlling: Setting standards, measuring performance against standard and taking corrective action as needed incorporating specific activities into farm management practices. Olaitan (1984) included maintenance of soil fertility, control of soil erosion, weed pest and disease control and feeding of livestock as part of farm management. The agricultural science teachers therefore inadding to the possession of these skills are supposed to have skills.in soil management, plants and animal production, that would help him co-ordinate and control available resources and activities in the school farm for psychoproductive oriented teaching of the subject. Effective management of school farm therefore requires basic skills for planning, organizing, directing, controlling and evaluating.

The relevance of skills for effective planning, organizing, directing, controlling and evaluating of the school is buttressed by the observation of Upton (1973) who noted that physical resources of land, labour and capital cannot be productive unless they are organized and co-ordinated by someone who makes the necessary decisions and carries them out.

In case of the school farm management, the agricultural science teacher is supposed to be the decision maker, the organizer and co-ordinator of the learning experiences and activities his students will be exposed to, inorder to achieve set goals. The extent to which the teachers can perform these functions depends on their possession of the required managementskills.

Okeke (1991) highlighted that one of the reasons why available farm resource materials are not utilized by agricultural science teachers in the secondary schools is that they lack necessary skills to operate them emphasizing that teachers should understand how to use and control resource materials such as the school farm and other facilities that could be derived therefrom. Similar observation was made by Nkajemeje (1988) who observed that lack of practical competencies on the part of agricultural science teachers was a factor inhibiting effective farm operations for educational benefits of the students. In the context of school farm management, a great gender gap exists between the male and female agricultural science teachers. Equality and justice between the sexes remain illusion of most societies of the world.

Keller (1991) defined gender as a cultural construct that distinguishes the roles, behaviour, mental and emotional characteristics between females and males developed by a society. It therefore becomes relevant for some concerted efforts to be made towards identifying the skills required by agricultural science teachers for effective management of school farm in secondary schools in Anambra State.

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