1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
The need to study mathematics becomes very important because it is a subject that affect almost all aspect of human endeavour. There is no area of study that does not use mathematics as a tools or guide in making her concept Clearer. Most students find it very difficult to study mathematics because of their ignorance about the importance of mathematics.
The social, economics, political, geographical and technological aspect of man are centered on numbers. Disciplines where numbers are predominant and form integral part of mathematics include statistics, account, arithmetic engineering, e.t.c for example, the earliest civilization of man kind came through mathematical manipulations.
The inter-relationship between mathematics development and advancement of human shows the importance of mathematics in life. Due to its numeric and symbolic nature, it is more related to the scientific and technological face of man’s world than toany other natural sciences.
However, the performance of students in mathematics has been a great concern to the society. Awokoya (1975) and Fafunwa (1980), both agreed in different researches that we live in a world where science and technology have become an integral part of the world culture. Therefore, for any nation to be relevant it must not over the importance of mathematics in her educational system.
The numbers of researches conducted in mathematics over the past two decades have increased drastically. Finding from these studies indicated that certain teaching strategies and methods worth careful consideration as teachers strives to improve their teaching practices in mathematics (Erakan, 2005).
A student who want to move forward in school has to be successful in mathematics. While some excel in thus subject, majority fund it difficult and quickly label it as the most hated subject. Mathematics can be a stumbling block in the road of educational success if a student gives up on it. That is why it is important to change student’s attitude towards the subject.
Most students’ often feel that the study of mathematics is all about things they won’t need in life, others look at mathematics as the master and servant of most disciplines and thus a source of enlightenment and understanding of the universe. In a similar vein, (Setidisho, (2001) submitted that no other subject form a strong binding-force among various branches of science as mathematics and without it, the knowledge of science is often remain superficial i.e not thorough or deep.
Mathematics has been the bedrock of knowledge and technological advancement in the whole universe. The main objectives of every teacher is to achieve effective communication with the students so as to ensure smooth passage of knowledge to learners. This task has not been easy, as disposition for instruction, attention span, comprehensive rate and mode of reaction vary from learner to another (Meehan, et.al 2003).
John Dewey and other progressive educators theorized that learners flourish to grow freely in their own way at their own rate without being forced or limited to, by too much teaching.
Mary Montessori similarly argued that learners should discover knowledge for themselves and learn by doing with a clear emphasis on sensory perceptions.
However, the performance of learners of mathematics at secondary school level in particular has been a great problem to science education as the level of their performances in both school and external examinations amount to failure. Effective and efficient use if instructional materials as a mean of enhancing smooth relationship between teachers and the learners will as well make learning more permanent.
Therefore, the need to meet the required level of students performance and situations in schools among other things can be attained by studying the attitude that exist between the teachers and students/ learners in the teaching and learning of mathematics.
A mathematics teacher is a distributor of knowledge and a developer of intellect. The communicates mathematics skills needed and desired by scientist. Government parastatals financial workers and individual learners for adequate and effective teaching i.e, for learners to understand and learn at their own rate. However, teaching and learning process can only proceed effectively if and only if the teachers have the knowledge of human nature and individual learners in particular.
Individual differences in learners such as environment, hereditary, sight e.t.c has made learning difficult for learners. Therefore, teacher must be child-centered in his teaching because of the uniqueness of each learners. Careful observation in a mathematics class reveal those who are talented, those who are constructive and accurate and those who are confused. The use of symbols in algebra, the use of plane shapes in trigonometry, the ability to think logically in word problem and in solid shapes all enable the learners to learn from concrete to abstract i.e from known to unknown. (Hamre, et.al. 2001).
Mathematics by nature has two aspects.
i. Its structure which is purely abstract and theoretical.
ii. The functional aspect which deals with its application in science, technology, other fields of learning and our daily lives.
Relating mathematics and student’s future career option in secondary school may serve as a motivating factor to the students participation, interest in and attitude towards mathematics.
This nation was supported by Sidlu (2006) who asserted that efficient study of mathematics raise the students competency in various vocations. By pointing out its application teachers could render valuable services in stimulating students interest and positive attitude toward mathematics.
1.2 STRATEMENT OF PROBLEM
Mainly, the aim of the researcher is to discuss some problems facing learners and their learning outcome when the teachers refuse to make use of cordial relationship with their learners. Some teachers have turn themselves to their learner’s enemy due to the inability of the teachers to study the learners difference.
Also, the use of appropriate method of instruction is seen as a great means in which learning proceed effectively. Learner’s interest or eagerness to learn, also make the lesson more interesting as mathematics has been a platform for all sciences and the determinant of learners’ achievement not only in science but all areas of education.
The following are problems that the study intend to provide answer to:
i. Lack of interest of student in mathematics
ii. The method of learning mathematics.
iii. There is no sufficient facilities to enhance teaching and learning of mathematics.
1.3 PURPOSE OF THE STUDY
The study sought to investigate the factors influencing the attitude of students towards the teaching and learning of mathematics. It also sought to determine the relationship between mathematics teachers attitudes and students attitudes towards mathematics and to identify the effect of student and teacher attitudes on student performance in mathematics.
1.4 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
i. Does exposure to the career opportunities of mathematics affect the attitude of students towards mathematics?
ii. Does lack of facilities affect student’s attitude to mathematics?
iii. What are the relations between teachers attitude and students attitude towards learning ofmathematics?
iv. Does teacher interest stimulate the student when reaching mathematics?
1.5 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
This will help students, society and teachers to understand the importance of mathematics and creating awareness that it is a subject for both male and female.
This study will also proffer solutions to the problem of type of instruction, technique and methods to be used in teaching mathematics with a view for serving as guide to educational authorities for a more effective utilization of this solution to achieve a better result.
1.6 LIMITATION OF THE STUDY
The study shall cover factor influencing the attitude `of students towards the teaching and learning of mathematics in Secondary Schools in Ogun State (OdedaLocal Government). The study has to X – ray two (2)Senior Secondary Schools in OdedaLocal Government.
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