This study has its titled as Effects of Inquiry Method on the Academic Performance of Junior Secondary School Students in Islamic Studies content of the curriculum”. The specific objective for the study were:- To compare the performance of students taught Islamic studies curriculum using inquiry method and those taught using traditional method of teaching. Find how the use of inquiry method of teaching enhances on the academic performance of male and female students in Islamic Studies. Determine the difference in the performance of students in pre-test and post-test for experimental groups and determine the difference on the academic performance of students in pre-test ands post-test for the control groups. Four (4) research questions and four Null-hypotheses were formulated to serve as guide for this study. Quasi-experimental design involving the pre-test and post-test was employed for the purpose of this study. A sampled of 300 students, male (160) One hundred and sixty and female (140) One-Hundred and forty, were proportionally selected out of 7,573 population and were placed into experimental and control groups i.e rural and urban. The study made use of a standardized Islamic studies performance Test (IPT) objective test items as the instrument for data collection. The scores obtained were analysed using the t-test statistical method. The result obtained in this study showed that out of the Four (4) Null-Hypotheses formulated and test at 0.05 level of significance two (2) were rejected while two (2) were retained. The rejection was attributed to the exposure of inquiry method to experimental groups which indicated that t-value is greater than t-critical in Ho1 and Ho3 while in the Ho2 and Ho4 its retention indicated a similar result in the t-value and in t-critical. The findings revealed that inquiry method have significant roles on the academic performance of Junior Secondary School (JSS) Students. In view of the above findings, it is concluded that effective use of Inquiry method in teaching should be employed as it will enhance the academic performance of not only JSS Students but the senior Secondary School (SSS) level of Education.

1.1       Background to the Study
Islam is a religion that is based on testimony of the existence and oneness of Allah (S.W.T.) and the massengership of the Prophet (S.A.W), the practical acts of worship (Ibadat) and the observance of moral teaching. It is a religion in which injunctions are translated into action. A Muslim child that goes to primary or post-primary school must be taught how to practice and observe these religious activities. Thus, a Muslim child should be able to make Taharah (Purification) of both minor and major impurities. Students must be able to correctly observe the five daily prayers. Students should also know the conditions governing Salat (prayer), Zakat (Charity), Sawn (Fasting); and Hajj(Pilgrimage).

The National Policy on Education (2009) emphasised that Islamic Studies is supposed to produce God-Conscious and responsible citizen for Nigeria. Responsible citizens, are considered as those who value their country, cherish their cultural values and are ready to safeguard the interest of their country NPE(2009) stated that one of the objectives of Islamic Studies is to lay a sound basis for moral habit as well as scientific, critical and reflective thinking. This would not be achieved if a suitable method of teaching is not properly indentified and utilized. Therefore, the NPE (2009) emphasised the adequate choice of method of teaching by teachers so as to solve educational problems and enhance students learning. (NPE, 2009)

Furthermore, methodology is the study and practice of various methods of teaching. This implies that methodology is both the study of different methods and the systematic means of presenting subject matter and learning experiences. This study of the methodology covers not only the philosophy of method, but also the influence of psychological principles involved in learning.

However, inquiry method of teaching is among the branches of methodology that have their origin in the various theories of learning. To make a success of various methods of learning, the teacher should observe certain principles. The teacher must understand both the theory and practice of methodology. The teacher must also use appropriate method to teach according to the nature of the topic, the subject, (like Islamic studies), the available resources in the school as well as the location and the prevailing situation in the environment.

Furthermore, the teacher must consider the individual differences of the students. The teacher must use his knowledge of the child‘s psychology and personality development to determine the teaching method and the evaluative method to be used.

There are several methods of teaching Islamic studies and the choice of a method at times is determined by the topic to be taught. There is hardly any method that can be used in isolation; rather, in a typical lesson, a teacher may need to use two or more methods that are related as to enhance effective teaching and learning. The National Teachers Institute (NTI, 2010) revealed that teaching method commonly used in Nigerian junior secondary schools are role play, lecture and demonstration methods. Other methods include discovery and team teaching. This research, therefore, intends to expose teacher to inquiry methods that could be used to enhance effective teaching.

The major conventional teaching methods were found to be used in teaching Islamic Studies by teachers in schools. Majority of teachers engage in what could be called ―Chalk and Talk‖ delivery as they do not give room for students‘ active participation in classroom or outside classroom activities.

Teachers contended that it is high time the policy provision that ―teacher education shall continue to take cognizance of changes in methodology and in the curriculum‖. Some teachers contacted through oral interview argued that these methods did not ensure effectiveness and efficiency in teaching and learning of Islamic Studies subject (NTI, 2004).

Furthermore, inability to teach Islamic Studies concepts in relation to Junior Secondary School students experience also shows that teachers make Islamic Studies lesson abstract and isolated to the immediate needs of students.

This may be the reasons for the low performance of students in the Islamic Studies subject. On the issue of pedagogy, teachers expressed the need for a shift from a pedagogy that is teacher-centered to the one that is students centered. Teachers also agreed that there was need for capacity building since as many as 84.5% of the teachers have never attended training, workshop/seminar concerning methodology of teaching Islamic Studies. 76.4% of teachers have never attended subject conferences on Islamic Studies. There was generally poor professional development of methodology of teaching Islamic Studies in Junior Secondary Schools (NTI 2010).

A teacher who intends to use the Inquiry method of teaching would do so by starting with questions about the objectives of each of the five pillars of Islam and how they can be achieved if rites are properly performed, then attainment of the objectives and the conditions attached to them. The teacher would then write on the chalk board the stages of salat (prayer). The demonstrative method is very suitable at this stage. The teacher would start with the Taharah (Purification) and demonstrate how it is performed, then goes on to demonstrate the Wudu (ablution) and salat (prayer). The teacher can show or demonstrate a concept or topic while the students watch. After the demonstration, questions are asked by the teacher to clear some doubts.

The students are then given the opportunity to participate before the class after which areas of lapses are appointed out by their colleagues for correction. This method is seen to be very effective because learning by doing makes it easier to understand. Teachers are encouraged to use this method of teaching the aspect of Taharah (purification), Wudu‘u (ablution) and salat (prayer). The method is effective in Junior Secondary School.

In addition, the reason why teaching Islamic Studies must use effective methods of teaching is to make learners develop critical thinking and cultivate the sense of gratitude to Allah (S.W.T) and submission to his guidance and moral law, both in worship and in behaviour toward other fellow-men. Islamic Studies teachers need to use effective methods by assisting the learners to work collaboratively to articulate their own ideas and to respect the opinions of others. It would also help learners to achieve the attainment of a balanced development of individual and community by giving due weight to the physical, social, intellectual, moral and spiritual need of man. Through inquiry method students would acquire skills that can be used in other aspects of their lives and intellectual pursuits of useful knowledge in accordance with the saying of the prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) ―the search for knowledge is a duty for every Muslim, male or female‖ and the application of such knowledge for the benefit of humanity in the field of Science and Technology and Medicine.

Moreover, the global objectives of Islamic Education can not be over emphasised. The first conference on Islamic Education that took place at Mekkah from 31st March to 8th April, 1977, under the sponsorship of the king Abdul-Aziz University, discussed in great details basic ideas, goals or aims of Islamic Education as follows:

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Item Type: Project Material  |  Size: 96 pages  |  Chapters: 1-5
Format: MS Word   Delivery: Within 30Mins.


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