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Influence Of Punishment On Primary School Pupils’ Learning In Oshimili South Local Government Area Of Delta State

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Abstract

This study was carried out to ascertain the influence of punishment on primary school pupils’ learning in Oshimili South Local Government Area of Delta State. The study adopted a descriptive research design. The population of the study comprised of the thirteen thousand, five hundred and thirty (13530) pupils (male and female) in all the 23 public primary schools in Oshimili South Local Government Area of Delta State. Out of the 23 public primary schools in Oshimili South, 10 primary schools were randomly selected. A total of 150 pupils was sampled (Male and Female. Three research questions were raised to guide the study. The instrument used for data collection was a structured questionnaire which was developed by the researcher and validated by two experts; one in Measurement and Evaluation and one in Primary Education Department of Federal College of Education (Tech) Asaba. One hundred and fifty (150) copies of the questionnaire were administered to primary school pupils in the selected primary schools in Oshimili South Local Government Area of Delta by the researcher with the help of two research assistants. 142 copies of the instruments were retrieved and analyzed. Based on the analysis, it was found that teachers ask pupils to kneel down and carry stones in their hands when they commit offence and pupils who are subjected to punishment have low self-esteem and discourage them from reading their books which affects their learning. On the basis of the findings, it was recommended that teachers should avoid the use of verbal abuse on the primary school pupils and there should be a strict law guiding the use of punishment in primary schools.

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

Background to the Study

The school is a place where individuals are raised from cradle to adulthood to be able to become useful not only to themselves but also to their family and the society as a whole. In the process raising and training the individuals, discipline is instilled and failure to adhere to the laid down rules and regulations attracts punishment which is usually not favourable to those involved. Children spend most of their time at home, with friends and in school. Intrinsically, they have some innate characteristics, while they learn most of the behavioural attributes form external sources.  Most of the learnt behaviours are greatly influenced by the environment, at home or in school (Saul, 2011) If there is use of abusive language and punishment at home, is likely that primary school children will learn the same. Similarly, if teachers motivate and encourage primary school pupils, their moral social and psychological development will reach the peak; however, if primary school teachers fail to tackle their needs, one cannot expect best possible development.

Pupils who are punished develop negative attitudes towards learning. Such pupils, when developed to adulthood possess no empathy for others. Research has shown that primary school children who are beaten up by their teachers learn aggression (Boser, 2011). They develop low self-concept and see aggression as a means of solving problems in life. They develop low self-esteem and show dejection and hesitation to participate in learning activities (Patel, 2010). This type of behavior has wider implications as it leads to bigger violence later in life.  The use of corporal punishment inculcates a strong belief in the impressionable minds of pupils that force is justified to control unwanted or undesirable behaviour. Ultimately, this promote the attitude of children that use of force or aggression is acceptable in the society (Robert, 2011). According to Roussow (2013), pupils who receive corporal punishment show symptoms of dejection in studies, poor performance in tests and also do not participate in the teaching and learning process enthusiastically. According to Roy (2011), the effect of physical punishment on pupils develop more severe psychiatric and traumatic conditions in children. Pupils in such conditions consider schools as unsafe place and thus avoid coming to school. Pupils remain absent from school and this situation of absenteeism leads to withdrawal from school.

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Reward and punishment have always been associated with each other in education. The latter used to have a greater role. However, advances in science and the study of behavior have led to the role of punishment being reduced. Nevertheless, some still believe that the technique is useful despite its damaging nature and must be used in certain conditions.

In everyday language, punishment is understood to mean shouting at a child, scolding or hitting; in the behavioral sciences, punishment is taken to be the reduction of the probability of the behavior being repeated in the future. It takes on many forms in schools: criticism, scolding, shouting, giving extra work, detention, slapping and beating.

There are two types of punishment: in the first, an unpleasant stimulus, such as spanking or scolding, is given; in the second, a pleasant stimulus is removed, as in denying love to a child, denying break time privileges and separating from friends (Erden, 2013). The first type of punishment is closely related to the concept of violence. According to John (2011), violence is the cause of pain by one individual to another, either knowingly or unknowingly. Examples of violent behavior include bursts of temper, hitting, kicking, pushing, pinching, slapping, fighting, wounding, threatening, insulting, shouting, abusing, bullying, limiting freedom, confiscating possessions and withholding what should be given.

Punishment should be applied in proportion to the behavior in order to inhibit it; thus, it is necessary that the pupil knows why s/he is being punished. Examples of such punishment include assigning difficult or unpleasant tasks; not carrying out the pupil’s requests; separating the pupil from the group, game or lesson; making him/her sit with his/her back turned to his/her friends; or detention (Philip, 2010). According to the applied behavior analysis approach, if a reaction is punished, the probability of it being repeated is reduced. When this principle is applied correctly, it works in 95% of children, and their behavior is easily affected by reward and results. However, clinicians accept that the behavior of children with attention disorders who are oppositional and defiant by nature is not affected by the systematic application of reward and punishment (Hall, 2013).

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When administering a punishment, it is necessary to take into account the child’s age, personality and the context in which s/he is found. The child must be told why s/he is being punished, the punishment should be in proportion to the undesired behavior and based on valid reasons and it should be the final resort. Punishment by denying affection to a child, or threatening to do so should be avoided, because an extremely oppressive attitude in a child’s education can cause the child to be intimidated, develop a weak character and can bring about emotional unbalance (Kelvin, 2014). According to Glasser (2011), in quality education, teachers do not scold, punish or oppress. Instead, they encourage the pupils and show that they are always willing to help them. Punishment never corrects a pupil’s behavior; and since punishment should never be used to control unwanted behavior, alternative methods to do so should be applied. Gordon believes that effective discipline cannot be achieved by pressure or by reward and punishment (Charles, 2013).

It is true that punishment has side effects on pupils; however, these effects differ in degree according to the type of punishment applied, and the characteristics of the teacher and pupils.

Corporal punishment applied in order to correct behavior has the following negative effects: reduction in ability to focus on cognitive activities; turning to harmful habits as refuge; running away from home; truancy or leaving school; deviating from the truth; lying to escape punishment and turning to crime; a low level of identity; lack of courage; the development of an ineffective character; anger; formation of feelings of grudge; physical stimulation at an early age; preparing the ground for sexual disorders; physical harm; permanent incapacitation; nervous disorders that cause incapacitation; suicidal thoughts (Dickson, 2014); cowardice; reclusion, hating teachers, fighting with teachers, fighting with friends; the desire to kill one’s oppressors; hating oneself and others, a reduction in self-respect; a decrease in academic success; learning not to trust others but to fear them, become obsessed as an adult with seeking revenge on those who applied the punishment, a weakening of friendships, behaving appropriately solely to avoid punishment; keeping away from the teacher and from class, playing truancy, denial and shyness; rebellion, the  desire  to  seek  revenge,  hate,  fear,  guilt.

Statement of the Problem

The process of child upbringing requires a lot of effort particularly from the part of the parents and the classroom teachers. Maintaining discipline in school seem to be practically impossible without the application of punishment. When children are not punished for their offences, they tend to continue repeating the same kind of behavior which may in a long run affect them.

Over the years it has been reported by teachers and parents that children tend to develop hatred and other kinds of attitude towards anyone who punish them for their actions or inactions. Some children skip classes especially in public schools when they know fully well that they will be punished for one offence or the other. This attitude seems to affect them psychologically, emotionally and academically. This study is therefore carried out to examine the influence of punishment on primary school pupils learning in Oshimili South Local Government Area of Delta State.

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Purpose of the Study

The main purpose of this study is to examine the influence of punishment on primary school pupils learning in Oshimili South Local Government Area of Delta State. Specifically, the study seeks to:

  1. Influence of positive punishment on pupils’ academic activities in Oshimili South Local Government Area.
  2. Determine the influence of corporal punishment on pupils’ level of participation in learning activities in Oshimili South Local Government Area.
  3. Ascertain the influence of corporal punishment on pupils’ learning in Oshimili South Local Government Area.

Research Questions

The following research questions were raised to guide the study:

  1. What are the of positive punishment on pupils’ academic activities in Oshimili South Local Government Area?
  2. What is the of corporal punishment on pupils’ level of participation in learning activities in Oshimili South Local Government Area?
  3. What is the influence of corporal punishment on pupils’ learning in Oshimili South Local Government Area?

Significance of the Study

The findings of the study would be of benefit to students, teachers, school management, ministry of education and the field of Primary Education.

The findings of the study would enable the students know how their attitude towards punishment affect their relationship with teachers and how affect their academic performance.  Teachers would also benefit from the findings of the study because it will help them to identify different types of punishment that they can give children with love and care and the consequences of using corporal punishment on the children.

The school management through the findings of the study would understand the kinds of attitude demonstrated by pupils towards the use of punishment which will enable the school management to spell out the kinds of punishment not to use on the students.

The findings of this study, ministry of education would know the kinds of punishment used by teachers at the primary school level and the attitude of the pupils towards the which will enable them to make a guideline on the type of punishment to use and the ones not to use.

Finally, this study would be an addition to the literature in the field of Primary education. It would also serve as a reference material to for scholars and researchers who may which to carry out a related study.

Scope of the Study

This study focused on the examine the influence of corporal punishment on primary school pupils in five selected public primary schools in Oshimili South Local Government Area of Delta State. With particular emphasis on influence of punishment meted on pupils, influence of corporal punishment on pupils’ level of participation in learning activities and the influence of corporal punishment on pupils’ academic performance.


Pages:  58

Category: Project

Format:  Word & PDF               

Chapters: 1-5                                          

Source: Imsuinfo

Material contains Table of Content, Abstract and References.

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