You are on page 1of 15

Teaching Vocabulary by Using Games to Young Learners I.

Introduction People all over the world use a language to communicate and interact with other people around them. Language can be used not only in spoken form but also in written form. A complex system of symbols or signs that are shared by the members of a community is called language. It will be useful to think about the other signs that people know and how they are reacting to the signs. People use language to interact and communicate with other people not only around them but also around the world. The most popular and important language for every people to interact and communicate with people around the world is English. English is a universal language. Nowadays, it is very important to mastering English in global era. In English, there are some skills that students have to master. Those skills are speaking, reading, listening, and writing. Due to the important role of English as a universal language, so English is not only taught and learnt in English speaking countries but also in non-English speaking countries, including Indonesia. In Indonesia, English is the first foreign language. It is not easy to teach English because every education level has different capability and characteristics especially in teaching young learners. In teaching young learners, teacher must be patient. He or she have to find new and interesting method to make the students feel enjoy when they are learning. Teaching young learners are more difficult than teaching teenagers or adults because young learners are very easy to be bored. In mastering the English skills the basic thing that students have to learn and understand is vocabulary because vocabulary is a key to learn any language. It is easier to use games in teaching young learners. It can make the students feel enjoy in learning vocabulary and it will be easy for them to acquire the lessons. Vocabulary is lists of words with their meaning. Teaching vocabulary to

young learners by using games will make them easier to remember, understand, and recognize the vocabularies that will be used. II. Discussion A. TEYL Young learners can be categorized as kindergarten or elementary students. According to Louanne Piccolo, teaching English to young learners is teaching children that the aged is about 3 until 11. In this paper the writer has specified young learners as children aged ten or at 4th grade of elementary school. The writer chooses children aged 10 or at 4th grade of elementary school for they have enough ability in learning a language. On the other hand, the teacher may find a difficulty such as the students will less focus on teaching learning process; but also the teacher will find a fun experience. Teaching English to young learners is a challenging job for the teacher. According to Monique Barb, TEYL (teaching English to young learners) is difficult and enjoyable. It can be difficult for the teacher because he or she has to be creative in finding new and interesting way to get attention from the students and attract students interest; however, it can also be enjoyable for the teacher because he or she got a chance of becoming children again by working together with them and seeing the world through their eyes. Cameron suggested that there are 4 things that the teacher needs to teach English to young learners beside knowledge and skill: A conscious of how the children think and learn. Skills and knowledge in speaking English to deliver the whole lessons orally. An ability to find and know what children interested in and uses that for language teaching. Being equipped to teach important literacy in English. As a teacher who teaches young learners he or she will find some problems or difficulty when he or she is teaching. Shelley Vernon's website,

Teaching English Games stated that there are some problems that the teacher have when he or she teaching English to young learners. Those problems are: yet. same. Children that are learning through repetition can be boring. Therefore, the teacher who teaches English to young learners should find the best activities and method in order to solve the problem. B. Vocabulary In English, there are 4 skills. Those skills are speaking, reading, writing, and listening. In English, there are also some elements that the children should paid attention such as structure, pronunciation, spelling, and vocabulary. The basic things that the students need to know to mastering Englishs skills are vocabulary. Vocabulary is very important to support the improving of their skills. Vocabulary is list of words with their meaning. In normal situations, children at least need 1 until 2000 words to speak and write English. According to Raja T. Nasr, vocabulary of a language includes many words that aim to part of experience. In English, all of those words include vowels and consonants that are arranged in special sequences. Vocabulary is the important element of language learning. It includes many words, not only as individual word but also as a group of word that have meaning. Vocabulary is very important for children. It is a key for children to understand what they read and hear, and to communicate with other people successfully. There are a lot of vocabularies that children have to learn. Children usually can be shy and uncertain to join the The development of every child is different so in one class activities. there will be mixed ability levels although the age of all children is Children have short time attention Children are easy to forget things quickly. Very small children can not speak their own language exactly

Therefore, to make the children enjoyable and do not feel bored when they are learning vocabulary; the teacher can use game. C. Games As the writer has explained above that young learners are often being bored when they are learning language especially in learning vocabulary, it will be enjoyable learning if the teacher use varieties method or activities in teaching vocabulary such as games. According to Jones, 1986 (Jones in Teaching English to Children) game is played one or more players to compete something or collaborate for playoffs based on the rules that are set. Games are one of interesting method or activities that can be used to teach especially in teaching young learners. In this case, games help the students to learn vocabulary effectively. They will not be bored and will acquire the lessons easily. According to Mark Koprowski, there are ten games that can be used to teach vocabulary, that are: 1. Taboo (aka hot seat) In this game, the class is divided into team A and team B. team A sits on one side and team B in the other side of the classroom. Put two chairs in front of the room so the student who sits on the chairs will be faced with her or his respective team, and the back of the students is blackboard or white board. One member of each team sits in their teams chair. Then, the teacher writes a word on the board. The students who sit in the chair mustnt see the word that is written on the board. After that, the teacher shout go and teams have one minute. They only permitted to use verbal clues to make their seated teammate say or guess the word that is written on the board. The rule (taboo) is that they mustnt say the word that is written on the board. 2. Memory Challenge

In this game, students are asked to make a small group or sit in pairs. Then, give them a time limit for example 3 minutes and ask them to write down as many words as they can from the last lesson (e.g. the topic of the last lesson is animals). The group or pairs that can remember many words from the last lessons will win the game. 3. Last one standing. The game is called last one standing where the students are given a topic (e.g. food, clothes, animals, things in a kitchen) and ask them to stand up in a circle if it is possible. Then, the teacher says, one, two, three, and followed by a topic (e.g. animals). After that, the next students in the circle say the item that is related to the topic and so on. The student who can not think and say the word or repeat the word that already said he or she has to sit down. Then, its time for another student and so on. The last one standing is the winner. 4. Pictionary The next game is pictionary. In this game the teacher divides the class into two teams (teams A and teams B). Teams A are asked to sit in group on one side of the classroom and teams B sits in the other sides. One member of each team is asked to go to the board. The teacher gives them a word, phrase, or expression that is written on a piece of paper. The students only have one minute to make their team say the item of the word only by drawing picture on the board as a clue. The first team who say the word will get a point. 5. Bingo The teacher writes up 10 words on the board. Each student chooses 5 words from 10 words on the board then writes down the words. After that, the teacher selects one of the words randomly and gives the students a definition or synonym of the word but does not say what the word is. If the

students think that the can guess the word that the teacher has described, they thick it. When a student has ticked all of the words, they should shout BINGO! Student who shouts BINGO wins the round. 6. Outburst In this game, Mark Koprowski suggested to divide the class into two teams that are team A and team B. the teacher give a topic to each team, then ask them to keep it from another team. Each team is given 5 minute to discuss the items related to the topic then write down the lists. After that, the games begin. The teacher tells to A the Bs topic. Then team A is given one minutes to try to guess team Bs lists. The member of team B has to listen carefully and thick the items that are guessed by team A. every item that is guessed by team A correctly means that team A will get a point and every item that they miss means that team B will get a point. After one minute, its time for B to guess team As list. The team who get a lot of point will win the game. 7. Concentration In this game, the teacher is suggested to divide the class into small group. A set of card which consist of 2 types of card, words card and picture cards, is divided to the each group. They play in turn. Students in turn open one of their cards and match it with the corresponding card. If it is matching, they can play again and if its not, the turn is going to the next student. The winner is the group which can match most of the card than the others group. 8. Scrambled Letters What should the teacher do in this game is writing eight words on the board with their letter shuffled (e.g. eicscen for science). After that, the teacher shout go and the students individually or in pairs try to disentangle the words as quickly as they can. The first student who is able to disentangle the word will win the game.

9.

Q&A Divided a class in to two group, A group and B group. Each group get a list of a word write down on the board, A group with A list, B group with B list. Each student should make questions based on the word they has. Then the question will exchange with the other student of other group. Each student has to answer the question. Then the answer is exchanged again and the original student has to read the question and its answer.

10.

Categories (aka the alphabet game) Divide a class into 3 or 4 teams. Write 6 categories in common life like sport, jobs, countries, furniture, verb, etc. then, the teacher choose randomly a letter of alphabet and write quickly in board. Each team should work together and find the words of each category with the start of the letter. The team that have found all words of categories should say stop and one member of the team write the word they found in board. Teacher check the words found by other teams. The points will be given to a team which find quickly and correctly the words. The winner is the teams with most points. D. Teaching Vocabulary In teaching English there are four skills namely reading, speaking, writing, and listening. Those skills are supported by some language elements that are structure, pronunciation, spelling, and vocabulary. The most important element that the children should learn more to mastering Englishs skills is vocabulary. As described above, vocabulary is lists of word with their meaning. It can also include collection of words. Teaching vocabulary to young learners is not easy. Teaching children or young learners are different from teaching adults. Children have special

characteristics than adults and they need special treatment. Teacher should be creative because children are often feeling bored. He or she have to find an interesting activities to make the children feel enjoy when they are learning. E. Learners Teaching vocabulary to young learners as mentioned above is not easy. Young learners have special characteristics so they need more attention. It is different from teaching adults. Vocabulary is list of words with their meaning and it also consists of collection of words. There are many words that children have to understand and remember. To help the children easy to remind and understand the words, the teacher should be creative. He or she has to find a suitable method and interesting activities to make them enjoy when they are learning. According to vale and Feunteun (1998:2) children have a lot of special characteristics in learning. Children as young learners have special needs. They will learn best if they are participated and their work are appreciated and they have an opportunity to experience and experiment by themselves. Children are like playing, so it is more useful if the teacher uses games as a method in teaching vocabulary to young learners. Games are interesting activities that will make the students enjoy and easy to acquire the lessons. The best interesting activities that the teacher can use to teach vocabulary to young learners is game. Aydan Ersoz stated that games are motivating the children in learning vocabulary because games are very interesting and amusing. Games are not only used in teaching vocabulary but also in all language skills and many types of communication. According to Lee Su Kim, there are many advantages of using games in the classroom: Games can break the usual routine of the language class. Games can motivate and challenge the children in learning process. In learning a language needs an effort. Games help the students to make the effort of learning a language. Teaching Vocabulary by Using Games to Young

Games are providing the students to practice in the four skills of English that are speaking, reading, writing, and listening. Games help the students to interact and communicate. Games create a meaningful context in using language. In choosing a game, the teacher have to consider some things such as

time, material, the topic of the lessons, and the students it self. In this case, the writer has specified what game that is suitable for 4th grade students to learn vocabulary easily. The game is last one standing game which is quoted from Mark Koprowski. The writer chooses this game because this game is easy to be applied for 4th grade students. In this game, according to Mark Koprowski, the students are asked to stand up in a circle if it is possible and they are given a topic (e.g. animals) Then, the teacher says, one, two, three, and followed by a topic (e.g. animals). After that, the next students in the circle say the item that is related to the topic and so on. The student who can not think and say the word or repeat the word that already said he or she has to sit down. Then, its time for another student and so on. The last one standing is the winner. Teaching vocabulary by using games to young learners is one of the effective ways. Teaching vocabulary by using games is helping the students to learn with fun and it also will decrease students bored so it will make them easy to understand and remember the vocabulary that is taught by the teacher. According to the explanation above that the writer has specified or decided young learners as children aged 10 or at 4th grade elementary school, the writer would like to enclose a lesson plan in teaching vocabulary by using games to young learners. One of the games that the writer chooses by quoting Mark Koprowski opinion is last one standing game.

F.

Closing In conclusion, when teaching young learners, teacher must be patient. He

or she have to find new and interesting method to make the students feel enjoy when they are learning. Teaching young learners are more difficult than teaching teenagers or adults because young learners are very easy to be bored. In this case, the writer has specified young learners as aged 10 or at 4th grade. It will be easier to use games in teaching young learners. Games help the students to learn vocabulary effectively. As explained above there are 10 good games that can be used to teach vocabulary to young learner according to Mark Koprowski. Those games are Taboo (aka hot seat), memory challenge, last one standing, pictionary, bingo, outburst, concentration, scrambled letters, Q & A, and categories (aka the alphabet game). In choosing games the teacher should consider about the time. It is not only time that teacher must be considered but also the material if it is suitable with the game and the students it self. Teaching vocabulary by using games to young learners is one of the effective ways to make the students understand and remember all the vocabulary that is taught by the teacher easily. Teaching English to young learners is helping the students to acquire the lessons with fun. Teaching vocabulary by games is amusing the children so it will decrease their bored in learning. Therefore, teaching vocabulary to young learners has many advantages. Those advantages are: helping the students to acquire the lessons decreasing the students bored the children will learn with fun

10

The children are able to remember and understand the vocabulary easily. The writer concludes that teaching vocabulary by using games will make

the children learn effectively and with fun, and help the children easy to remember and understand vocabulary. Lesson Plan Subject Class Theme/sub-theme Meeting Time : English : 4th grade elementary school : vocabulary/ transportation : twice a week : 1x 45 minutes

Teaching aid : Board marker, Eraser, White board. Standard Competence To understand the meaning of vocabulary and kinds of vocabulary about transportations in the context of daily life and to access knowledge. Basic Competence To understand the meaning and type of vocabulary about transportations accurately, fluently, and acceptably to interact with closest environment. Indicator: Students are able to know kinds of transportation. Students are able to remember kinds of transportation by playing the games. Teaching-learning Method Genre Approach, GTM (Grammar Translation Method) Teaching-learning Media Papan tulis, penghapus, board marker, buku yang relevan, kamus, gambar. Sources

11

Buku Panduan (LKS) Dictionary

Valuation Tugas individu Tugas kelompok Tanya jawab singkat

Teaching- learning process: Beginning: 1. 2. Example: Teacher: ok, kemarin kalian telah mengetahui tentang jenis-jenis binatang, sekarang saya akan mengajarkan topic yang baru, tapi sebelumnya saya akan bertanya kalau pergi ke desa biasanya kalian naik apa? Students: bis, pesawat, kereta, kapal, dan lain-lain Teacher: ok, in English bus, train, ship, and plane. All of them are called transportation. Jadi topic kita hari ini adalah transportasi. Saya akan menjelaskan lebih banyak lagi macam-macam transportasi yang bisa digunakan. Please look at the black board. 3. The teacher patches many kinds of transportation picture with their name. example: greeting The teacher explains to the student about transportation.

12

Main activity: 4. The teacher asks the students to read the transportations name after her or him. Example: Teacher: tirukan setelah saya. Bus= bis, train=kereta, plane= pesawat, car=mobil, motorcycle= sepeda motor, taxi= taksi, bicycle= sepeda, ship= kapal, boat= perahu motor, Students: Bus= bis, train=kereta, plane= pesawat, car=mobil, motorcycle= sepeda motor, taxi= taksi, bicycle= sepeda, ship= kapal, boat= perahu motor, buggy= andong Teacher: very good, once again, skali lagi, setelah itu kita akan memulai permainan. Ok, 1, 2, 3. Students: Bus= bis, train=kereta, plane= pesawat, car=mobil, motorcycle= sepeda motor, taxi= taksi, bicycle= sepeda, ship= kapal, boat= perahu motor, buggy= andong. 5. The teacher asks the students to make a circle then start to play the game. Example: Teacher: baiklah, sekarang berdiri membentuk lingkaran. Tadi kan kalian sudah mengenal dan mengetahui berbagai jenis transportasi. Untuk membuat kalian lebih mudah dalam mempelajari dan mengingatnya. Sekarang kita buat sebuah permainan. Setuju? Students: ya, bu Teacher: nama permainannya adalah last one standing. Dimana kalian berdiri membentuk sebuah lingkaran yang sudah kalian lakukan seperti ini, kemudian setiap siswa akan mendapatkan sebuah topik yang telah kita pelajari hari ini dan sebelum-sebelumnya. Mengerti?

13

Students: ya Teacher: kemudian siswa yang saya beri sebuah topik harus bisa menjawab kata apa yang berhubungan dengan topik tersebut. Misalnya siswa A saya kasih topik animal jadi siswa pada hitungan ketiga harus menyebutkan nama atau kata yang berhubungan dengan animal, misalnya dog. Paham? Students: paham. Teacher: aturannya, jika siswa tidak bisa menyebutkan kata yang berhubungan dengan topik maka ia harus kembali ketempat duduknya, kata yang sudah disebutkan tidak boleh disebutkan kembali, dan yang sampai akhir tetap bertahan dan masih berdiri karena bisa menyebutkan kata yang diminta maka dia yang jadi pemenang dan mendapatkan hadiah. 6. Teacher Teacher Teacher Teacher Teacher Teacher Teacher Teacher Teacher The teacher starts the games. Example: : ok, first! Start to student A, animals?1,2,3 : animal. 1,2,3 : transportation. 1,2,3 : student C please back to your seat, next animal : transportation (back to student A)1,2,3 : transportation. 1,2,3 : transportation : please back to your seat. Animal, 1, 2, 3 : transportation. 1, 2, 3

Student A : cat Student B : lion Student C : (cant answer) Student D : butterfly. Student A : car Student B : ship Student D : (cant answer) Student A : giraffe

14

Student B : (cant answer) (and so on until the teacher got the winner) Teacher : so, the winner is student A Closing: 7. The teacher ends the class. Example: transportasi dan sebelumya kalian juga sudah mempelajari tentang animal. kalian murid-murid yang pintar bisa mengingat apa yang sudah kalian pelajari. Ok, good afternoon, see you Students: good afternoon and see you Teacher: ok, enough for today. Kita sudah banyak belajar mengenai

15