1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Information and Communication Technology (ICT) was introduced into secondary school in Nigeria in recognition of the important role of Computer Science Education (CSE) in expanding knowledge and skills required for optimal functioning in the modern world. The government of Nigeria attempted to include computer studies in the education system from basic to tertiary institutions on the basis that computer education is critical to national growth (Olaitan, 2009). "A computer," according to Vermaat (2008), "is an electrical device that can collect input, process the data according to established rules, create results, and store the results for future use, all while functioning under the direction of instructions stored in its own memory." As a result, a computer may be described as an electrical machine that receives, stores, retrieves, communicates, and processes data to generate information under the direction of stored programs (Vermaat, 2008). The goal of the study was to see if teachers and students take into account the computer's architecture when teaching and learning programming. For the teachers and students to have the accurate interpretation of the computer, they must first comprehend how it works, how it is organized, and what it can do (Mandi, 2011). The knowledge that a computer is a programmable device or machine would drive both instructors and learners to desire to program the computer to solve their unusual or specific issues constitutes the basic foundation for computer science (Shelly, 2009). Understanding how to operate a computer is a huge step forward since it piques students' interest in solving issues and inherently stimulates instructors and students to mentally prepare for any hurdles that may arise, which can hinder progress in topic mastery (Vermaat, 2008).
According to Olaitan (2009), computer studies is a course of study meant to provide students with a detailed yet broad understanding of how computers are utilized. Computer studies provide students with the information, skills, and abilities necessary to use computers effectively.
The following are some of the goals of computer studies in secondary school:
i. To cultivate a computer-scientific mindset.
ii. Using the computer, to pique interest in an awareness of life's plan
iii. To teach or assist the youngster in developing a scientific approach to problem-solving.
iv. To assist the youngster in gaining practical computer science knowledge.
To assist the youngster in gaining a meaningful understanding of computer science fundamentals.
"A subject that tries to create a scientific foundation for such issues as computer design, computer programming, information processing algorithmic solutions challenges, and the algorithmic process itself," according to Brookshear (2013). Computer science "provides the groundwork for today's computer applications as well as the foundations for tomorrow's computing infrastructure," according to Brookshear (2013). The process of teaching and instructing children and young people on how to use and operate computers in order to build fundamental computing skills and contribute to society may be termed as computer in education. The computer science education curriculum material should be prepared in such a manner that it covers all of the important areas that presumably impact computer science teaching and learning in order to improve students' performance throughout their studies. Teachers and students must both approach computer science with an open mind if they are to have a meaningful engagement during the teaching and learning process (Cashman, 2010).
Any set school curriculum need methods of implementation in order to achieve the goals at various levels. Teaching and learning methods are pre-planned activities that take place throughout the presentation of the curriculum. Students are brought into contact with the subject matter through discussions, tutorials, lectures, discoveries, and demonstrations. This contact's effectiveness necessitates activities and educational materials. This might take the shape of symbolic and graphical representations, genuine items and specimens, experimentation, and demonstrations.
One of the ideas that instructors must keep in mind, according to Imosie (2012), is that man learns by his senses. He went on to say that some kids learn better through one of the senses or the other. Some people believe that seeing is believing, whereas others believe that hearing, touch, smell, and taste are the most important senses in learning. The instructor must communicate effectively with the students in order for the intended learning to take place. To accomplish effective communication between himself and his pupils, the teacher must have a basic understanding of the communication process, which will allow him to have a wider range of options for conveying his message to his students. According to Mundi (2008), the greatest strategy to assist pupils in learning is to expose them to the world that education is intended to present to them. This is accomplished by using genuine objects in real-life situations. Teaching materials are the genuine items that are utilized to improve learning.
Materials, equipment, or strategies that assist the instructor in taking a realistic approach to his or her job are referred to as teaching materials. Whether actual or made-up, these representations all have the same goal: to assist the instructor in successfully and meaningfully transmitting the intended information to the students so that they absorb, comprehend, retain, and apply the knowledge obtained to achieve overall educational goals. Instructional materials are those that assist pupils to form a mental image of what has been taught and to remember the lesson for a long time. Radio, television, chalkboards, charts, micro-projectors, still photos, specimens, and other instructional resources are all available (Ogoma, 2011). It may be defined as the tools that the classroom instructor use to impart information to students in order to meet his objectives. Instructional materials are those that are used to make teaching and learning easier. It allows the instructor to easily explain ideas or concepts by appealing to several senses at the same time (Mundi, 2008).
Computer studies is more of a practical learning learning experience than a theoretical one. As a result, teachers should create settings that allow children to learn more quickly and efficiently (Eya, 2013). To make teaching and learning easier, the instructor should use appropriate teaching materials. Computers, which include the keyboard, mouse, monitor, processor, interface, printers, and disk drives, as well as laboratories, projected pictures, textbooks, and chalk boards, are examples of teaching materials. Without the availability of these instructional materials materials in schools, the use of the aforementioned instructional materials in teaching and learning computer science in secondary schools would not be able to achieve its goals. There is also an increased demand on the time and expertise of instructors (Eze, 2011).
Previous research has criticized the lack of availability and/or use of instructional resources for studying computer science and other topics in Nigeria. Adedijio (2010) found that the availability of instructional resources for teaching and learning is quite poor. According to Neboh (2011), public schools require four different types of teaching resources: two-dimensional materials, three-dimensional materials, audio materials, and audio-visual materials. According to studies, most audio and audio-visual materials such as cassette recorders, tape-recorded materials, radio, projectors, film strips, slides, transparencies, television, and video recorders are not available in most Nigerian schools, and when they are, they are insufficient (Eya, 2013). While textbooks and two-dimensional resources for computer studies are commonly available in schools, three-dimensional materials, audio materials, audio visual, computers, and computer laboratories are not available in most Nigerian secondary schools (Adedijio, 2010). This is a circumstance that severely impedes efficient computer science teaching and learning, as well as the development of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) skills among Nigerian secondary school pupils (Akanbi, 2008). According to Mkpa (2007) many instructors are hesitant to employ instructional materials in the classroom due to their perceived value. Many teachers, he claims, used teaching materials last when they were being evaluated or observed for certification. They no longer bother to use the resources because such supervision is now rare. According to Enem (2012), some instructors find it difficult to employ instructional resources in their courses, owing to a lack of enthusiasm, resourcefulness, or poor training on the need for and how to use instructional materials. This goes a long way toward demonstrating that the problem with the utilization of teaching materials in the classroom is intertwined (Akanbi, 2008). The materials needed for computer science education may not be available, and even if they are, instructors may choose not to utilize them owing to a lack of knowledge or a refusal to put in extra effort to improve their professional competence. This necessitates an investigation into the availability and extent of teaching materials used in the learning of computer science in junior secondary schools in Ebonyi State's Ikwo Local Government Area.