THE EFFECT OF RELIGIOUS EDUCATION IN UPBRINGING OF CHILDREN IN PRIMARY SCHOOL
Background to the study
Religious education forms part of the basic national curriculum for primary schools this may be a surprising fact but it has come up to be the truth and nothing but the truth. Some individuals have linked religious with social habituation and they have also gone a long way to argue that it has no consign in either a working environment or a schools. At the same time, others believe religion in education have to be about fostering students within a meticulous religious faith system. Over the year’s religious education has actively been known to be a strong promoter of the values of genuineness, fairness, honesty, deference for all and care of the environment. Religious education consign specific emphasis on children appreciating themselves and others, it teaches us the real responsibility of family and the community in religious principle and action, the contentment of diversity in society through of acknowledgment of their similarities and differences, and individual custodianship on earth. Religious education is also acquainted with shifting environment of the general public, including transformations in religious practice and appearance and the authority of religion in the neighborhood, homes, state and in the universal society.
The study of religious education with children helps to develop the children knowledge and understanding of Christianity and in some cases, not just Christianity but also other religious cultures and other belief systems. Previous studies have also shown that religious education has encouraged children to learn from various religious beliefs, values and culture while at the same time, exploring their own beliefs regarding their religion. This comprehensive study in primary schools has also help children to mature personally and socially as well as refining their psychological judgments and decisions on religious, moral and social issues, preparing them for life in a secular society.
During my time in primary school I can clearly recall that Christian religious education popularly known as (CRE) was a compulsory subject for us we had no right at that time to make it an optional subject. It was also mandatory to pass it although it wasn‟t compulsory that you had to pass it before you can get promoted to the next class. This curriculum schedule gave us no other option than to study as pass it. In fact anyone who could not pass CRE is assumed not to be able to do well or pass other subjects. This education gave us a stronger sense of our own identity and it made us to know our place in the world that we live in through the religious and ethical teaching. For those of us who just gained admission into primary school the subject was not just at a personal level anymore but was also aimed at make these students understand how the community they live in functions religiously, socially, politically and culturally. At the end of the day, these new admitted students are encouraged with such religious education to develop a sense of societal unity and communal accountability in the direction of others. (Lopez-Muniz, et al., 2006)
Religious education has made a significant involvement principally in its center of attention on promoting value for everyone equally. Religious education has taken a front responsibility in fighting against injustice, unfairness and pessimistic bias. By teaching or providing religious education to children who just begin primary school means you have just opened the doors to moral development for them.
Statement of the Problem
The ultimate target of RE, in the long term, is to educate people to be happy, both in this world and in the Hereafter. That is why religion admits certain principles- to realize these targets, and constructs a moral and merit system to frame the behaviors of mankind regarding personal and social life. By this dimension, religion and its education makes all the necessary regulations for people to conduct their lives in accordance with these aims.
Critics of religion, however; often point to certain behaviors of religious adherents as a means of condemning religion. For instance children raised in the different religious groups will always at one time or another look down upon each other. They fail to show maturity in handling issues and neither portrays rationality nor altruism when confronted with matters that need problem solving. Generally according to the critics, there is no pattern marking one of the different groups as superior to other groups since religionists behaviors do not vary differently from those of non religionists. There is the dire need to investigate therefore the effect of religious education on the child upbringing in primary schools in IKERE LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA OF EKITI STATE
Objective of the Study
The general objective of this study was to investigate the effects religious education in upbringing of children in primary schools in IKERE LOCAL GOVERNMWENT AREA OF Ekiti State
The study was set to achieve the following objectives:
i. To investigate how the religious education helps in upbringing of child in primary schools
ii. To establish how religious education influence the moral development of children.
iii. To ascertain the influence of religious education helps to inculcate value on primary school children
iv. To determine how religion education influence children socio-cultural upbringing in primary school
The study was guided by the following questions:
i. To what extent do religious education helps in upbringing of children in Primary schools?
ii. Does religious education influence the moral up bring of children?
iii. To what extent does religion education inculcate value on primary school children?
iv. Does religion education influence children socio-cultural upbringing in primary school?
Significance of the Study
The study will examine the effect of religious education in upbringing of children. The study will be significant to the curriculum developers and the ministry of education who through the findings of the study will be able to establish a proper curriculum to be incorporated in the learners‟ syllabus that will transmit moral values that are acceptable in the society. The study will also be of significance to religious leaders of the different religious groups since through the research findings they will be able to evaluate how strong their teachings and activities impact on the moral development of learners in schools and adjust them to correspond to the moral requirements of the children. Subsequently, the study will be significant to the parents and caregivers since they are the first moral teachers to the children and therefore the findings of the study will enable them to re-evaluate and enact good parenting styles that will transmit acceptable moral behavior in the society as well as act as good role models to the children.
Scope of the study
The study will be conducted in private and public primary schools in IKERE LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA OF EKITI STATE. The study will mainly focus on primary school students in six selected schools who will be the respondents in the study.
Assumption of the study
The researcher assumes that all primary school pupils belong to a certain religious group which could either be Christianity, Islamic, or African Traditional Religious groups among others.
Definition of Key Terms
In this research the key terms are:
Moral Degradation: Decline of morality in the society primary children: Children between ages 3-6 years who have been exposed to different religious beliefs.
Religious Groups: A number of people sharing common beliefs.
Moral Development: Acquisition of moral characteristics such as rationality, independence, maturity, altruism and responsibility.