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Background of the Study
Basic Science and Technology is one of the core subjects in the primary education curriculmu as enshrined in the National Policy on Education (Federal Republic of Nigeria, 2004). McGraw-Hills (2005) has it that science is the knowledge about the structure and behaviour of natural and physical world, based on facts that one can prove, for example by experiments. Science and technology can be said to be a system of organising the knowledge about particular subject, especially one concerned with aspects of human behaviour and society.
The term science can be used to refer to a product (body of knowledge), a process (a way of acquiring new knowledge through observation, questioning and experimentation), and an enterprise (an institutioanl pursuit of knowledge of the natural world/environment (Egbuna, 2010). The current development of science and technology has greatly affected the lives of every human being that no one can fane ignorance of their significance
Basic Science and Technology as defined by Asun, Bajah, Ndu, Oguntonade and Youdeowei (2010) is the foundation knowledge given to primary school pupils to help them learn and understand science and acquire basic scientific training to become creative and capable of innovative thinking. It is an activity-oriented course which follows strick thematic approach whose aim is to make learning science effective through a series of activities and exercises, as well as a modern approach of discovery methods. The overall objectives of Basic Science and Technology curriculum under the Universal Basic Education Programme are to:
i) develop interest in science and technology;
ii) acquire basic knowledge and skills in science and technology;
iii) apply their scientific and technological knowledge and skills to meet
iv) take advantage of the numerous career opportunities offered by science and
v) become further prepared for further studies in science and technology.
The interaction of about 150 million Nigerians with their environment creates indelible marks on the landscape. The Vision 2010 Committee of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (1997) and Omoogun (2004), catalogued Nigeria’s environmental problems to include soil erosion (sheet, gully, coastal), flooding (coastal, river, urban), over population in cities and urban centres, drought and desertification in the northern parts and deforestation in the southern parts of Nigeria, municipal solid waste and loss of biodiversity,climate change and global warming, urbanization, diseases, all types of pollution and poor sanitation as problems confronting Nigeria and other developing countries. Pollution is the introduction of substances that contaminate the environment and are dangerous to the health of human beings and other living organisms (Onoh, 2007). Corvalan (2005) reported that the world’s biodiversity is declining at an alarming rate requiring important efforts and new decisions on conservation.
According to the McGraw-Hills (2005: 828), the term environment is "the sum of all external factors, both biotic (living) and abiotic (non-living) to which an organism is exposed to." Here, the biotic factors include influences by members of the same and other species on the development and survival of the individual. It is important to note that for each environmental factor, an organism has a tolerance, in which it is able to survive. For this reason, different individuals or species have different tolerance ranges for particular environmental factors. This variation represents the adaptation of the individual to its environment. In general, the environment provides all support systems, in the air, on water and on land, as well as the materials for fulfilling all developmental aspirations. These impacts on the environment occur as the people attempt to satisfy their seemingly endless desires for food, shelter, recreation, infrastructural facilities and to generally subdue the physical environment in order to achieve economic growth. The quest is based on their mentality supported by two assumptions. Firstly, the earth has an unlimited supply of resources for human use for full exploitation to advance human civilization. People employ advanced and sophisticated technology for the intensification of the exploitation of resources within the environment and to subdue the earth. According to Emeh (1997), there is a gradual but painful realization of the falsehood of this assumption evidenced from the myriads of environmental problems. The second assumption is that humans see themselves as separate from the environment, rather than being a part of it. This anthropocentric view of humans has led to a seeming biological terrorism, an attempt to overcoming nature to fulfill their needs with little regard for the consequences (Asoegwu, 2009).
Although, these wants and desires contribute to the development of the country, which everybody clamours after, the unwise use of the land and its resources produce negative impacts on the environment, thereby leaving the biophysical environment degraded, sometimes permanently. All these negative impacts amount to unsustainable development (Omofonwan and Osa-Ado, 2008), since development is 4 sustainable if it meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs (Brundtland Commission, 1987). Concerted efforts are being made by national and international communities to save the environment, yet the rate of degradation is moving at an alarming rate. For instance, the United Nations (UN) Earth Summit in 1992, the 1994 UN Convention to Combat Desertification, the Kyoto Protocol in 1997, and the 2003 UN Decade for Sustainable Development are all efforts to save the environment. The UN Millenuium Development Goal 7 seeks to ensure environmental sustainability in member countries. Sustainability means improving the quality of human life, while living within the carrying capacity of supporting ecosystems (Urbanito, 1994). UNESCO Tblisi Declaration (1978: 3) defined environmental education as “the learning process that increases people's knowledge and awareness about the environment and associated challenges, develops the necessary skills and expertise to address the challenges, and fosters attitudes, motivations, and commitments to make informed decisions and take responsible actions”. Environmental education helps to create awareness, and will be particularly useful in teaching pupils in the primary school, who are future generations and tomorrow’s leaders, to correct the existing anomaly in the environment and mobilize action by the general public. For this study, EE is the learning process that teaches children the skills, attitudes, and expertise of environmental cleanliness, wise use of natural resources and active participation in environmental improvement and protection.
Statement of the Problem
A journey through the streets of Enugu South Local Government Area (LGA) of Enugu State, Nigeria reveals ugly litters of refuse. Heaps of refuse abound around schools, markets, hospitals and residential houses, spoiling the beauty of the environment and incurring environmental health hazards through pollution. There is public outcry against mountainous heaps of solid wastes in various parts of neighbourhoods. The situation calls for aggressive awareness creation on the delicate nature of the natural environment and the need to maintain clean and healthy environment to the point of achieving emotional, social and health stability. Sanitation initiative to address the public outcry against mountainous heaps of solid wastes may require improved teaching of EE to primary and secondary school who will be the future users and leaders of tomorrow. This improved teaching could adopt the use of cartoons, as against the conventional teaching method. Such teaching and learning of EE is aimed at the transfer of in-depth knowledge and the creation of sufficient awareness to help young people understand the value of natural resources and the ecological processes that maintain or destroy them. Other topics or subject matter of EE included in Basic Science and Technology are: Pollution: Meaning of pollution, types of pollution, harmful effect of types of pollution, control of air, water and land pollution; waste and waste disposal, meaning of waste, types of waste, solid and liquid waste, disposal of solid waste or (refuse), disposal of liquid waste or (sewage), dangers of improper waste disposal, recycling; environmental quality, qualities of a healthy environment, qualities of an unhealthy environment, advantages of a healthy environment; disadvantages of an unhealthy environment/disadvantages of degrading the environment; ways of maintaining a healthy and beautiful home/school environment
1.3 Objectives of the Study
The objectives of this research are
1. To determine whether cartoons as a television programme affects children learning of environmental education.
2. To find out whether children do actually understand the Environmental education from cartoon
3. To determine whether children should be encouraged or discouraged from watching cartoons.
4. To make reasonable recommendations on the children and cartoon selection.
1.4 Research Question
For the purpose of this study
The following research questions are formulated
1. Does cartoons affect children learning of environmental education?
2. Do children actually understand the environmental education from cartoons?
3. Should we encourage or discourage or children form watching cartoons.
4. Should we make reasonable recommendations on the children and cartoon selection.
1.5 Research Hypothesis
The following hypothesis were formulated to;
H0: Children do not learn environmental education from the cartoons
Hi: Children learn environmental education from the cartoons they
H0: Children should not be encourage to watch cartoons
H2: Children should be encouraged from watching some
Significance of the study
This study will help the child in the acquisition of EE skills and culture and increase conciousness of environmental cleanliness.Environmental education ensures that the children and generations yet unborn will live in a clean and healthy environment by sanitation culture. Theoretically, the study will be of benefit to researchers on early childhood education, as it will provide insight into and stress that cartoons attract and stimulate even the reluctant pupils to discuss their ideas, thereby enabling teachers to have access to those ideas. Practically, school children will benefit from the results, as they get involved in managing and maintaining a healthy and clean environment. They will also benefit from the study, which will improve their performance in Basic Science &n
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