Senin, 25 Maret 2013

Improving Students’ Vocabulary Mastery Using Crossword Puzzles (A Classroom Action Research at The Fifth Grade Students of SD Negeri 2 Ngerangan in The Academic Year of 20112012)

                                                                        CHAPTER I                                                                    INTRODUCTION

A. Background of the Study
English is an international language. It plays an important role, especiallay as a bridge to communicate between people of different nations. English is also used in almost all aspects of human life for example: economy, science, education, politic, etc. English is mostly used in the scientific field as means of expanding science and technology written in English. People cannot deny that they need English as early as possible. It is clear now that English is very important for all people in this world. Due to the importance of English, in Indonesia, English has been taught and learnt at elementary school since some years ago. Elementary school is the basic level of educational system in Indonesia. Teaching English in elementary school is important in order to give student basic knowledge and ability on English. Moreover, English at elementary school can help student to be more ready and confident in learning English at the higher level. In Indonesia, English is introduced in the curriculum to a number of elementary schools as a local content. It is stated in the curriculum of elementary school 2004: “Sebagai upaya peningkatan kualitas pendidikan khususnya pengajaran Muatan Lokal Bahasa Inggris Sekolah Dasar, pada tahun anggaran 2005 Dinas Pendidikan dan Kebudayaan Provinsi Jawa Tengah telah menyusun Kurikulum Muatan Lokal Mata Pelajaran Bahasa Inggris
Sekolah Dasar untuk kelas I s.d kelas VI”(Kurikulum Tahun 2004 Mata Pelajaran Bahasa Inggris untuk SD/MI Provinsi Jawa Tengan 2004:iii) The years at primary school are extremely important in children’s
intellectual, physical, emotional, and social development. One of the elements in the language that cannot be separated from teaching English at elementary school is English vocabulary. It is difficult to master foreign language without mastering or understanding the vocabulary. Zimmerman (1997) states that for young learners, vocabulary is central to language and words are the critical importance to language learning. It cannot be separated from the other language elements in the teaching and learning process because it influences the students’ ability in learning English. Thus vocabulary mastery is very important to support other
English language skills. Wilkins (in Thornbury, 2002: 13) says that without grammar very little can
be conveyed, but without vocabulary, nothing can be conveyed. Dellar and Hocking (in Thornbury, 2002: 13) add whether most of the time is spent in studying grammar the English will not improve very much. However the most improvement will be seen if more words and expressions are learned. One can say
very little with grammar, but they can say almost anything with words. Likewise, Hatch and Brown (1995: 1) add that vocabulary refers to a list or set of words that individual speakers of language might use. Since vocabulary is a list, the only system involved is alphabetical order in dictionaries. The choice in vocabulary selection and methods used in teaching vocabulary are important. It means that the choice of words and method of teaching are important factors in vocabulary learning, especially formally at school. According to Pinter (2006:83), fluent speakers and writers put together the component parts of the language system quickly and efficiently. To be able to do this, they need to know a large pool of vocabulary items and a long list of grammatical structures. From the explanations above, we can conclude that learning vocabulary is important as the basic need to encounter a new language. Teaching vocabulary to children is not easy. There are many problems that will be faced by the teacher when he or she introduces English to his or her
students. For the students, they will be given something new and different from their mother tongue. Based on those phenomena, teacher has to help his or her students so that they can learn vocabulary effectively, and the result is that they can improve their vocabulary mastery. Therefore, the sample of the study will be the fifth grade of elementary students who receive English subject as their foreign language. Based on the age level of learners which is range from nine to eleven they are called as children.

Ditulis Oleh : Angga Eka Patria // 07.30

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