Tyas, Rofaningsih Rahmaning. 2011. Improving Elementary Students Vocabulary Skill Through Digital Game: Planet English Sample Conceptual Article. Cirebon. Muhammadiyah University.
ABSTRACTElementary students usually feel bored in vocabulary lesson because the way teaching of the teacher make the students fade up and can not interesting the student. It make students are indolent to memorize vocabulary. As a teacher we must choose the best of method that make the students excited and enjoy that is through digital game in class activities.
In relation to language teaching and learning we understand games as conceptual models (or doctrines, Gee 2005) that work across formal and informal contexts of learning. In language teaching games have often been used to stimulate motivation and authentic communicative practices, as games have been conceptualised as the the fun factor of language learning (Warschauer and Healey 1998, 60).Researchers have indicated that game-based learning could be the best way to trigger students learning motivation (Provost, 1990; Papastergiou, 2009a; Dickey, 2010; Huang, 2010; Tzn, Ylmaz-Soylu, Karaku, nal, & Kzlkaya, 2009). Several previous studies have demonstrated the ease of use and usefulness features of computer games by applying the game-based learning approach to a variety of learning activities (Bourgonjon, Valcke, Soetaert, & Schellens, 2010; Warren, Dondlinger, & Barab, 2008). For example, Terrell and Rendulic (1996) stated that using computer games for learning in elementary
schools can increase the internal motivations and learning achievements of students.
This article focus on one aspect of learning vocabulary, that is, improving students vocabulary skill through digital game to become more active and effective. It is took from some theories of learning vocabulary, especially for elemantary students. And here is explained too a vocabulary game sample that interesting and appropriate with elementary students. Key Word: Learning Vocabulary, Vocabulary, Game, Digital Game and Student Elementary
INTRODUCTIONEducation in indonesia is still not efective, especially learning vocabulary. Most of the students are difficult to remember vocabulary and do not use the vocabulary in daily activities because they just use the vocabulary during classsroom lesson. It makes students are indolent to memorize vocabulary. Sometimes the way teaching of the teacher make the students fade up and can not interesting the student. As a teacher we must choose the best of method that make the students fun and enjoy that is through digital game in class activities. In language teaching games have often been used to stimulate motivation and authentic communicative practices, as games have been conceptualised as the the fun factor of language learning (Warschauer and Healey 1998, 60).Learners of English have to deal with unfamiliar vocabulary during their language
acquisition. In order to learn and retain new words, learners should participate in different task-based activities in their classroom whether it is a guessing task, a describing exercise or conversation making. games have been shown to have advantages and effectiveness in learning vocabulary in various ways. First, games bring in relaxation and fun for students, thus help them learn and retain new words more easily. Second, games usually involve friendly competition and they keep learners interested. These create the motivation for learners of English to get involved and participate actively in the learning activities. Third, vocabulary games bring real world context into the classroom, and enhance students' use of English in a flexible, communicative way. (www.asian-efl-
journal.com/dec_03_sub.Vn.php) Utileze of digital game in school particularly in vocabulary learning need facility like the computer/laptop in class (one children one computer). That is make game still rare in school. because school must prepare the facilities in every class and that is very expensive for prepare all the facilities or every students must prepare and have laptop, whereas not all students have laptop. Some teacher still do not undersatand about the game and occasionally they can not operate the computer especially senior teacher. Less time also causes the problem, because digital game activity need extra time. Lot of the game make teacher confuse to choose the best game appropriate with vocabulary lesson or appropriate with the materi and sometimes some of game need connect to internet. So, digital game just use in certain school which have completed facility and some schoolstill use traditional game like card game.
This article focus on one aspect of learning vocabulary, that is, improving students vocabulary skill through digital game to become more active and effective. It is took from some theories of learning vocabulary, especially for elemantary students. And here is explained too a vocabulary game sample which interesting and appropriate with elementary students and easy to play by them with colorful picture and spelling that make them enjoy and fun to play it.
BODY OF THE TEXTA. Learning VocabularyLearning vocabulary is learn all about the words. Within learn vocabulary, we have memorize all the words, so that we can know and use all the words in our daily activities, like reading, writing, listening and speaking. There are some experts who give definition of vocabulary, Evelyn Hatch and Cheryl Brown (1995:1) define vocabulary as a list or set of words for a particular language or a list or set of word that individual speaker of language might use.Furthermore Webster Dictionary (1935:1073) noted that, vocabulary is A list or collection of words usually alphabetically arranged and explained or lexicon, stock of words use in language or by class, individual, etc. While according to Roget (1980:1036), Vocabulary is: - An alphabetical list of words often defined or translated, the vocabulary includes idioms and two words verb. - All the word of Language.
- Specialized expression indigenous to a particular fields, subject, trade or subculture. Vocabulary can be defined, roughly, as the words we teach in the foreign language. However, a new item of vocabulary may be more than just a single word: for exmple, post office, and mother-in-law,which are made up of two or three words but express a single idea. A useful convention is to cover all such cases by talking about vocabulary ,,items rather than,,words. (Ur, 2003, p 60) According to Coady and Huckin, the vocabulary is central to language and critical importance to the typical language learner (Coady and Huckin, 1997:5). It means that the learner should master the vocabulary so that they can learn or understand the language. Students ability to learn and use vocabulary effectively dominates language instruction. For many public school students, especially, those with language and learning disabilities, the ability to remember vocabulary words and use them in context presents a very difficult task (Donaldson & Nash, 2005; Hardman, Drew, Egan & Wolf, 2005) Learning vocabulary is a very important part of learning a language.
Because, if we learn vocabulary we can know more words, and than, you will be able to understand what you hear and read; and the better you will be able to say what you want to when speaking or writing.
B. Learning Vocabulary to Elementary Student
Learning vocabulary have be taught
in the beginning, especially in
Elementary schools. Because, vocabulary is a basic lesson of English learning and children can get and memorise all the words easly than adult. Vocabulary should be mastered by the students so that they will be easy to understand the language. The way to make them easy in learning vocabulary is by giving a good method in teaching. The teacher should have a creative way in giving the materials to the students, one of the ways is by doing some fun activities. Children play and children want to play. Children learn through playing. In playing together, children interact and in interacting they develop language (Brumfit, 1995:142). Similarly, Virginia in her book Techniques in Teaching Vocabulary said that there is truth in the belief that experience is the best vocabulary teacher (Virginia, 4). According to Harmer, At the same time childrens span of attention or concentration is less than adults. Children need frequent changes of activity: They need activities which are exciting and stimulate their curiosity: They need to be involved in something active (They will usually not sit and listen) (Harmer, 1991:7) As stated by Harmer at beginner and elementary levels it certainly seems a good idea to provide sets of vocabulary which students can learn (Harmer, 1991:159). Based on statement above, we can conclude that teaching more vocabulary to young learners is a good way. In their ages, they will be able to master foreign language if there is a good method in teaching them.
Halliwell states that: 1. Young children are already very good at interpreting meaning without necessarily understanding the individual words 2. 3. Already have great skill in using limited language creatively Frequently learn in directly rather than directly
4. Take great pleasure in creating fun in what they do 5. Their imagination is ready 6. above all take great delight int alking. (Halliwell,1992,p3) In summary, children (elmemtary sudents) is the best grade to learn vocabulary because their brain able to catch and memorize all the words easily. And the teacher must choose best methood that effective can make children fun and enjoyable within learning of vocabulary.
C. Improving Elementary Students Vocabulary Through Digital GameSome students have a low interest in learning vocabulary words. Thi