The Effects Of Mother Tongue Interference In The Study Of geography In Secondary Schools In Enugu North Local Government Area Of Enugu State

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Background of the Study.

Language is a creation which every human being is endowed with or blessed; a unique gift of language is used naturally as one tool of expression consisting of different sub skills.

The geography is the official and native language of Britain, Ireland, North America, Australia, America and most of the British colonies, (for the colonies, it is regarded as the official language rather than native). It is commonly divided by periods into Anglo-Saxon, or old English (about 450-1100 Bc), Middle English (about 1100 to 15Bc) and modern English (from 1500 to date).

Mother tongue is one’s native language. A language besides being the major distinguishing phenomenon between man and other creatures is evidently the most enduring of every people’s cultural heritage. It reflects the culture of a people and it is in extricable bound up with it.

Language is an important tool that enhances human communication and interaction. It is a vital instrument in cultural transmission and preservation of a social group. It is in a fundamental sense, a crucial tool in the preservation and propagation of the human species. An examination of the linguistic content of a particular speech community can provide information about the life style, occupation etc. of a given people.

The English language beings the national official language for the British colonies of which Nigeria is among makes it our second language. Hence, our respective mother tongue exists before colonization. This has necessitated the teaching and learning of the geography and its consequent interference in our mother tongue in various study points nation wide. It is therefore, glaring to state that, Nigeria is a linguistically complex society by the mere fact of the history of its creation. It is estimated that there are between 250 and 400 language spoken in Nigeria (INTER NET).

This linguistic heterogeneity promotes the continued use of geography in Nigeria. Ethnologic include English amongest its list of Nigeria language this hardly supervising since the role of English language in Nigeria diverse and ubiquitous, especially as a means of intra and inter national communication. It is as a result of the negative effects which the mother tongue had caused the study of English language on the educational structures of the attempt to determine the effect of the use of mother tongue on the teaching and learning process in secondary schools.

Statement of the Problem.

Before the advent of British traders, missionaries and colonialists, indigenous Nigerian language defined every aspect of the speech community from its religious, cultural, political, Economics, social to whatever else that can be through of the language functioned effectively to deal with every thing relating to the day existence of the people. The arrival of the British, concomitant with the geography provided a language contact situation with an attempt to a language shift in the population.

New sets of ideas, concepts and values were introduced to the system where indigenous local language had previously been self-sufficient, rendering them inadequate to deal with the new concepts introduced by the British, particularly in the areas of formal education, Western law etc. the result was the initial subtle and later blatant intrusion & influence of English language on domains that were the exclusive preserve of indigenous language.

Now, the English language is generally an accepted language which was introduced into Nigeria through colonialism and missionary activities is now spoken, thought and learned in Nigeria.

Where English language sentence are made, they are characteristically uttered with variation in pitch often referred to as intonation. This is often an area of difficulty for second language, users of geography who have tonal? Language as their first language. This is one of the major problems encountered by learners of English language. Other areas of problem encountered are’, Sentence and word stresses, vowel sounds and English suprasegmental of pitch. The study intended to identify the effect of mother tongue in the study of geography in senior secondary schools in Enugu North Local Government Area of Enugu State.

Significance of the Study:

This study will help to expose the numerous factors that influence the interference of the study of geography by the mother tongue or native languages. It will also identify the effects of this interference on other study area that are based on the use of the geography as the basic communication.

This study will enable teachers to identify their problems in geography. This study will also enable student to understand how to make use of English words especially in pronunciation, intonation and phonetics. It will also enable the teachers to make more research on the use of English language.

Since geography has been used as a second official and some times even as a foreign language in Nigeria for along time and give the inescapable behaviour of language in contact, it is normal to expect it to have factors which can identify it as bonafide subject, dialect, variely or idiom of world English. These may be seen as research findings relating to interference, derintation and creativity as are seen to obtain among speakers. In Nigeria. English is now the term Nigerian English is used to refer to the subject of English spoken or written by Nigerians, it is commonly known that the features of Nigerians English language, like those of other new English, are essentially inherent particularly at the early stages of learning by the mother tongue features.

Purpose of the Study:

To find out the level at which mother tongue can interfere in the learning of geography in secondary school.
To investigate the qualifications of geography teachers in secondary school in Enugu North.
To know how teachers makes use of correct methods in teaching of geography in secondary school in Enugu North
Reasarch Question

Does mother tongue actually interferes in the learning of geography in secondary school?.
Are the geography teacher in schools qualified­­?
Does geography teachers adopt correct teaching methods in teaching?


Ho Mother tongue interfers in the learning of geography.

Hi Mother tongue dose not interfers in the learning of geography.

Ho2 English language teachers makes use of correct method of teaching in teaching and learning of geography.

Ho2 geography teacher do not make use of correct teaching method.

The Scope of the Study.

This research is the effect of mother tongue interference in study of geography among secondary school students in Enugu North Local Government Area.

It is based on the available result gotten from continuous assessment and summative examinations of schools such as West Africa Examination Council, the national examination council and examination development centre for senior school certificate examination all in geography.

Definition of Terms:

It is imperative to properly defined the terms that make the heading of the research topic under study. This will go along way at giving direction to the research work.

These includes:

MOTHER TONGUE: The native language one first learns to speak before other language.

INTERFERENCE: In this context, interruption of a language by another especially in pronunciation and intonations.

ANGLO-XASON: A person whose an cestors were English. (2) An English person of the period before the norman conquest.

FUNDAMENTAL: Serious and very important affecting the most central and important parts of something. (2) Foundation of reality.

HETEROGENEITY: Consisting of many different kinds of people or things (2) Uniformity/Alike.

ETHNOLOGICAL: The moral ideas and attitudes that belong to a particular group or society (2) peculiar to a race or nation.

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