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Saturday, March 2, 2019

Family Size And Academic Performance Of Primary School Pupils In English Language

the expendable family
Family Size And Academic Performance Of Primary School Pupils In English Language
1.1 Background to the Study
Academic accomplishment is an essential parameter in measuring success in students. Observations and reports have shown that success or high academic accomplishment has become a Herculean task to accomplish by Pupils in recent times. Poor academic performance was recorded at the primary, Primary school and tertiary levels of education in Nigeria.
The performance of Pupils at all levels in educational institutions in Nigeria has attracted many criticisms from all and sundry and from time immemorial. The decline in academic performance of Pupils in Nigeria has been observed by Soyinka (2009) when he observed that the education system in Nigeria need restructuring. He went further to say that academic standard had fallen drastically and the quality of graduates being produced by the nations’ schools is questionable and subject to re-examination.
            Poor academic performance of Pupils has been of great concern to educationists, guidance and counsellor in particular. Despite all guidance programmes and counseling strategies mounted in schools to improve the students’ academic performance were recorded yearly. It becomes necessary to find out the causes of such poor performance in Nigeria primary institutions. Though these poor performances have been attributed to a lot of industries such as pupils’ factors, like pupil’s attitude to school, approach to learning and academic self-concept. Apart from pupils’ factors, school factors and parent’s factors, there are other indicators that cause poor performance. On the part of the parents, there are certain factors which influence children’s success, such as parents’ social class, parents’ education as well as parental input and other factors, the family size and birth order can contribute positively or negatively to students’ academic performance.
            Family size in this context refers to the total number of children in the child’s family in addition to the child him/herself, while the birth order refers to the child’s position in the birth order. However, the family type that a child comes from either monogamous or polygamous family usually has an impact on the child’s academic performance. It is important to note that either of the family type (monogamous or polygamous) family dictates the size of the family. The polygamous family is peculiar to Africa in general and Nigeria in particular in Oruk Anam Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom State; the data collected revealed that polygamous family is common among well-educated family as well as among poorly educated families. It is equally among professional and managerial fathers of the top of the occupational hierarchy. It is the unskilled workers at the bottom of ladders that the practice of polygamy is prominent, but it is equally common among intellectually oriented families living in homes full of recent books as well as families without a single book in their houses.
            Information from literature depicted that children from larger families are found to do worse than children from smaller families lower down the birth order do worse than those higher up the birth order (Lacovou, 2001). According to Adler cited in Uba (2011) first birth or the older child is usually advantaged by a good deal of attention and warmth during the early stage on the age of life, which he entertains all alone. Observations and studies have shown that more attention and time are usually accorded the firstborn (Becker, 2000). Parental attention by parents declines as the number of children increase and later-born children perform less well than their earlier born siblings. Studies carried out in the past on the relationship achievement and birth order have shown that there were negative relationships. For example, Leoma (2002) on the relationship of birth order and creativity, first born and configuration of oldest and only children are the significantly more creative or verbal test of creativity than later born.
            Nwafor and Ango (2008) observed that there was more significant outstanding academic performance amongst first birth children. Tenibiaye (2002) observed that there was a significant difference in intellectual capacity between the first and later born Spear in his study, investigated that birth order effect on intelligence with later-born children revealed that later-born children were less capable than earlier siblings when birth order controlled, family size was found to be negatively related to intelligence.
            However, Powell and Steelman (2003) and Vanejik and Degraaf (2005) argued that children’s attainment depends on the input of time and money from their parents. The more increase of children in a family the less of both inputs. These inputs are not money alone, but other essential things like time, attention, resource delusion and so on.
Moreso, Booth, and Kee (2006) confirmed that children from larger families have lower levels of education. Research on the effect of siblings, size, and position has been based on a theory of the allocation of parental resources as presented in Becker (2000) and Spanta and Paulson (2005) confirmed that differences were found in birth order and family size of adolescent achievement in academic.

1.2 Statement of Problem
Today teachers are often blamed for low academic performance of the students, without actually finding out other related factors that can contribute to the students’ problem as far as academic is concerned most people are quick in pointing accusing fingers on both the child and the teachers, should the whole problem be heaped on the teachers who always want the best from their students? One would like to find out the justification the people have for blaming the teachers as regards the low performance of the Pupils in their academic. The truth is that the foundation of the child socialization is laid at home more so children spend more time at home than in school. Many factors associated with the family could have contributed to the high or low performance of the Pupils with the family size as one of them. The family size in one way or the other contributes to the failure or success of a student in school, in the sense that when the family is large, there will be no adequate concentration on the child by their parents based on the academic performance of the child.
           This study, therefore, considered the influence of Family Size and Academic Performance of primary school pupils in English Language in Oruk Anam Local Government Area.
1.3 Purpose of the Study
The study will seek to achieve the following specific objectives;
i.            To investigate the academic performance of pupils in English Language from large family size homes
ii.          To investigate the academic performance of pupils in English Language from small family size homes
iii.        To ascertain the relationship between birth order and academic performance of pupils in English Language.

1.4 Significant of the Study
The study was designed to find out the influence of Family Size on Academic Performance of Primary Schools pupils in the English Language in Oruk Anam Local Government Area. The study will be of significant help to educates on how to hand pupils from different family size background in order to increase their performance. It will also enable school administrator to see the need for providing books, newspaper and magazine in the school library knowing very well that the same pupils may not have the opportunity in their house, maybe as a result of large children in the family and noise everywhere. The study will also help teachers in adjusting his/her method for effective in accommodating every pupil.
1.5 Research Questions
Based on the background to the study and problems discussed above, the following research questions were generated;
1)     How does family size affect the academic performance of Pupils in English Language?
2)     To what extent does birth order affect academic performance of Pupils in English Language?
1.6 Research Hypotheses
The following research hypothesis guided the study.
1.      Pupils from large family homes do not differ significantly from their counterparts from small family homes in their academic performance in English Language.
2.      There is no significant relationship between birth order and pupils academic performance in English Language.
1.7 Limitation of the Study
The limitation of the study includes the following:
i.    The time given for the study was inadequate to make research like this which has a wide scope. Also Apart from time, shortage of finance was the major limitation to research.
ii.  Is the inability of research to cover the whole primary schools in Oruk Anam Local Government Area as the title suggested?
1.8 Delimitation of the Study 
This research work has not only focuses attention on Family Size and Academic Performance of Pupils in English Language in Oruk Anam Local Government Area with selected public Primary School in the study area.
1.9 Definition of Terms
Family size: Is the total number of children in the child’s family in addition to herself \ himself.
Birth order: This refers to the child’s position in the family.
Small size family: Is a family with not more than six (6) people i.e. the father, mother and four (4) children.
Polygamy: The custom of having more than one wife at the same time.
Academic Performance: Refers to the mean score obtained by pupils in an examination. In this study, it refers to evidence of knowledge acquisition, literacy and learning through pupil’s end of term/year examination or cumulative grades.

Educational Attainment- The highest level of education an individual has completed from primary to university levels. The study investigated the influence of educational attainment of pupils “parent’s on pupils academic performance in public schools

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