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Improving Students Listening Skill by Using Songs (An Action Research at the

Second Year Students of MA Pancasila Bengkulu 2008 View clicks


Improving Students Listening Skill by Using Songs (An Action Research at the Second Year
Students of MA Pancasila Bengkulu 2008
View clicks
Posted January 31st, 2010 by m.fadlij
Bahasa Inggris
abstraks:
The problem of this research was how to improve students listening skill by using songs. The
method was a classroom action research that consisted of pre-test, two cycles, and post-test. Each
cycle consisted of four steps: planning, action, evaluation, and reflection. The subject was the
second year students of Madrasah Aliyah (MA) Pancasila Bengkulu 2008/2009 academic year
that consisted of 18 students. The instrument was a test and analyzed by mean score formula.
The result showed that in pre-test, the students got mean score 44,55 (low). In cycle 1, they got
48,5 (low). In cycle 2, they got 60 (moderate). In post-test, they got 75,38 (good). So, it can be
concluded that the use of songs improved the second year students listening skill at MA
Pancasila Bengkulu.The problem of this research was how to improve students listening skill by
using songs. The method was a classroom action research that consisted of pre-test, two cycles,
and post-test. Each cycle consisted of four steps: planning, action, evaluation, and reflection. The
subject was the second year students of Madrasah Aliyah (MA) Pancasila Bengkulu 2008/2009
academic year that consisted of 18 students. The instrument was a test and analyzed by mean
score formula. The result showed that in pre-test, the students got mean score 44,55 (low). In
cycle 1, they got 48,5 (low). In cycle 2, they got 60 (moderate). In post-test, they got 75,38
(good). So, it can be concluded that the use of songs improved the second year students listening
skill at MA Pancasila Bengkulu.
CHAPTER I
INTRODUCTION
A. Background
Inspired from some researches about teaching and learning English as a second and foreign
language, especially in listening skill, there are some obstacles faced by students and teachers.
The obstacles are such as using unsuitable methods by the teachers and lack of motivation from
the students. Problem existing in students poor mastery of English listening skill is most of they
have very short attention span and lack of motivation (Tee and Fah, 2005: 1). The teachers have
to find the suitable methods to motivate the students in order to make them interest in learning
English. So, the goal of teaching listening is hoped can be reached.
As we know we can speak sensibly only if we understand what is said. In fact, people cannot talk
if they cannot hear other peoples talk. That simply means there is not enough language input and
there is no output. No deaf person can speak clearly because he cannot hear clearly. In the Noble
Quran, Allah SWT says:
?????????? ???? ?????????? ???????? ? ???? ???????? ??????????????? ??? ??
???? ??? ???????? ???????? ????????? ? ????? ????? ??????? ??????? ?????

Then High above all be Allah, the True King. And be not in haste (O Muhammad ) with the
Qur'an before its revelation is completed to you, and say: "My Lord! Increase me in knowledge."
(Thaahaa: 114)
In this verse, Allah SWT forbid the Prophet Muhammad SAW to read the revelation before he
listen it firstly. Furthermore, listening skill is one of the basics of learning languages and
acquiring them is very important in language learning. Moreover, with the development of high
technology, we more and more rely on our ears to get information. There is no doubt that the
speed of getting information is faster through listening than reading. Thus, it is crucial to
improve the level of listening comprehension of the students.
In Indonesia, English as a foreign language has been taught at school, from elementary school
until senior high school. In the Noble Quran, Allah SWT says:
?????? ??????????? ?????? ????????????? ?????????? ????????????? ?????????????? ???????????
???? ? ??? ??? ??????? ??????? ??????????????? ????
And among His Signs is the creation of the heavens and the earth, and the difference of your
languages and colors. Verily, in that are indeed signs for men of sound knowledge. (Ar Ruum:
22)
As a foreign language, English has four skills (reading, listening, writing, and speaking) that
have to be mastered by the students. From these skills, listening is a skill that felt difficult to be
mastered, because it needs more attention and concentration to comprehend the sounds (listening
material). It can be said that listening is not a passive skill; the process of listening is a complex
process in which many things happen simultaneously inside the mind. Besides being complex,
listening is far more difficult than many people can imagine (Mee, 1990).
There are some reasons why listening felt difficult to be mastered by the students. First, the
students begin to learn English by the way of reading, instead of listening. In fact, reading is
different from listening, like writing is different from speech. The biggest difference is that
speech consists of sounds. Listeners must know the sound system; otherwise, they cannot
understand speech. Moreover, writing uses different language. Written English consists of neat,
correct sentences, while speech does not.
Second, the materials on the tape are usually read by English speaking people. There are
different accents, difficult idioms and unfamiliar language chunks in their speaking. This is
another difficulty. For the students, their English teachers are usually local people. So the
students may not be used to the accents of the foreign people. It is hard for them to understand
native speakers.
Third, when English-speaking people speak English, they usually speak at a normal speed. It is
too fast for the students to follow. When listening, the students cannot choose a comfortable
listening speed; they have to keep pace with the speakers thinking process. So sometimes they
have not even got the meaning of the first sentence, before the second sentence has already
passed. Their results show that they have missed the whole passage.
Fourth, the contents of the tape are not always familiar with the students. Some of them are not
relevant to the students. The students may lack the background knowledge about foreign
countries and cultures. So sometimes they cannot understand the material or they may
misunderstand the meaning of it.

Based on the researchers small observation at Madrasah Aliyah (MA) Pancasila, the researcher
has also found that it is very difficult for the students to understand English through listening.
The problems are most students are from different minority areas. In some junior high schools,
there are no language labs to train their listening skills. Listening activities are not common for
the students. When they come to senior high school, they cannot adjust their study habits very
quickly. They still rely on their eyes instead of their ears to learn English.
Usually, in the lab, the students feel at a loss when they listen to some new text. Over 50% of the
students could not understand the meaning of the material after playing the tape for the first time.
Expecting them to understand the material, the teacher often gives them some instructions and to
play the tape again, at least three times. Still, at least 20% of students might not understand it.
Then, the teacher sometimes has to stop the tape to explain the difficult or unfamiliar words and
occasionally explain material sentence by sentence through the whole text. So, this is a serious
problem because some students cannot understand the whole text after listening to it three times
in class. Furthermore, the students might gradually lose their self-confidence. They are afraid to
go to the lab to listen to English again. When they are face to face with listening material, they
have little confidence in their listening comprehension abilities. Therefore, they may not
understand them because they have to battle the psychological suggestion that they could not
understand spoken English.
Beside of that, the teachers are difficult to find the suitable method or technique to stimulate
students in learning listening. If a teacher always uses the same teaching methodology, they may
become predictable and, perhaps, less interesting for their students (Ross, 2006). The students
have poor mastery of English listening skill because they have lack of motivation. The
motivation is much needed in learning listening, because sometimes students have to hear the
fast sounds or words more than one to be understood. Without high motivation, they will be
bored and can stop learning, and the goal of education cannot be reached. It will be dangerous if
there is no effort to reduce the problem.
In order to overcome those problems, it is better to look for good method in teaching listening.
We can use some activities that can stimulate the students to improve their listening skill. The
activities such as watching a film, listen to news report, and listen to English songs. In watching
a film, we can cover the subtitle with a piece of paper for a few minutes and try to predict what is
going to happen. In listen to news report, we can choose the topic that interests us such as about
sport, fashion, or education. When listening, we can write the vocabularies that appear on the
particular topic. In listening English songs, we can listen to the pronunciation of words and sing
along with the songs.
Listen to English song is felt more interesting from the other activities. English songs are a great
language package that bundles culture, vocabulary, listening, grammar and a host of other
language skills in just a few rhymes. Songs can also provide a relaxed lesson on a hot boring day.
It can also form the basis for many lessons. It can be used for a wide variety of English for
foreign language learning and teaching activities. It can start discussions on a topic or even
become the centre of debate (Futonge, 2005). Using songs in the classroom is a great way to live
up listening activities. It can be added a couple of steps that have been used with success to the
process though to make the listening activities more effective.
Therefore, the researcher tries to reduce the problems of the students listening comprehension
and intends to find out what can be done to help them improve their listening skill. So, in this
research the researcher would like to use songs to improve the second year students listening
skill at Madrasah Aliyah (MA) Pancasila Bengkulu in academic year 2008/2009.

B. Identification of the Problem


Based on the background above, there were some problems in teaching and learning listening.
The problems were:
1. Listening activities are not common for the students because most students are from different
junior high schools which there are no language labs to train their listening skills.
2. The students have little confidence in their listening comprehension abilities when they are
face to face with listening material.
3. The students may not understand listening material because they have to battle the
psychological suggestion that they could not understand spoken English.
4. The students have lack of motivation in learning listening.
5. The teachers are difficult to find the suitable method to stimulate students in learning listening.
C. Limitation of the Problem
There were some activities that can improve students listening skill, such as listen to films, listen
to news reports, and listen to English songs. In this study, the problem was limited on improving
the second year students listening skill by using songs at Madrasah Aliyah (MA) Pancasila
Bengkulu in academic year 2008/2009.
D. Formulation of the Problem
The problem of this research was formulated, How does using songs improve the second year
students listening skill at Madrasah Aliyah (MA) Pancasila Bengkulu in academic year
2008/2009?
E. Objective of the Research
The objective of this research was to find out whether using songs can improve the second year
students listening skill at Madrasah Aliyah (MA) Pancasila Bengkulu in academic year
2008/2009 or not.
F. Significance of the Research
The research was conducted by expectation that it will be useful for many sides. The
significances are:
1. to improve teaching practice in listening in the classroom
2. to develop and implement the students listening comprehension skills.
G. Definition of Key Term
1. Listening skill is the students ability to listen the listening materials as well as possible.
2. Songs is a piece of music with words that is sung.
CHAPTER II
LITERATURE REVIEW
A. Listening Skill
In Indonesia, English as a foreign language has been learned at school, from elementary school
until senior high school. It has four skills that have to be mastered by students. These skills are
reading, listening, writing, and speaking. From these skills, listening is a skill that felt difficult to

be mastered, because it needs more attention and concentration to comprehend the sounds
(listening material). Allah SWT said in His sacred Book:
???????? ????????? ????????? ???????? ??????? ???????? ????? ?? ???????? ???? ???????? ?????
????? ? ???? ?????? ?????? ?????? ?? ??????????? ?????
And the example of those who disbelieve, is as that of him who shouts to the (flock of sheep)
that hears nothing but calls and cries. (They are) deaf, dumb and blind. So they do not
understand. (Al Baqarah: 171)
From the verse above, it can be concluded that hearing carefully (listening) is a process to start
mind. Equally, by listening we can learn and understand many lessons.
1. Definition of Listening Skill
As defined by oxford (1993: 206), listening is a complex problem solving skill and it is more
than just perception of the sounds. Listening includes comprehension of meaning words, phrases,
clauses, sentences, and connected discourse. Furthermore, according to Bulletin in Saricoban
(1999), listening is one of the fundamental language skills. It is a medium through which
children, young people and adults gain a large portion of their information, their understanding
of the world and of human affairs, their ideals, sense of values, and their appreciation.
Rivers in Hasyuni (2006: 8) says that listening is a creative skill. It means we comprehend the
sound falling on our ears, and take the raw material of words, arrangements of words, and the
rise and fall the voice, and from this material we creative a significance. Russel and Russel in
Hasyuni (2006:8) also say that listening skill is listening with comprehension, attention and
appreciation. Then, listening activity needs integrating skill of language, such as pronunciation,
vocabulary mastery, writing, speaking, and reading.
Listening skill can be meant as ability to pay attention or to hear something. But, listening is not
same as hearing. Hearing is essentially an automatic, passive activity. It is possible to hear
sounds without consciously engaging in the process. While, in listening the brain doesnt
automatically translate the words into the message they are conveying. That is essentially what
listening is determining the meaning and the message of the sounds or words. It is active process
that involves much more than assigning labels to sounds or words. As mentioned in Mee (1990),
listening is a complex process in which many things happen simultaneously inside the mind.
Besides being complex, listening is far more difficult than many people can imagine.
So, we can say that listening is the ability to identify and understand what others are saying. It is
also a complex activity, and we can help students comprehend what they hear by activating their
prior knowledge. Furthermore, it will consider another way teachers can help ease the difficulty
of listening by training students in different types of listening.
2. Difficulties in Listening Skill
Listening is usually a hard skill to master by the students. The first reason is that the students do
not have the text in front of them to look at if they do not understand the information. A second
reason is the accent and intonation of the native English speaker. In addition, each country has
dialects and regional accents which can confuse the listener. All of these make listening learning
a major challenge and it is no surprise that the students can find it difficult.
Ur (1996: 111), says that there are some students difficulties in learning listening: trouble with
sounds, have to understand every word, cant understand fast and natural native speech, need to

hear things more than once, find it difficult to keep up, and get tired.
The other problem in learning listening is the students have no control over the speed of what
they are hearing and they cannot go back or rewind to listen again. Although, in class the
listening materials are recorded and can be played again or students to listen again, it is usually
under the control. Also, because the speed at which native speakers usually speak, students feel
that the teacher asks the students to listen to the overall message and forget about what they
could not catch, which probably means what they did not understand, the teacher has no idea that
sometimes what they do not really understand can add up to 75% of what is heard (Rixon, 1986:
37)
Moreover, Underwood (1989: 17) mentions some other kinds of difficulties that are directly
related to the students themselves. One of the problems which the students have established
learning habits in the sense that they were encouraged to understand everything by listening
carefully to teachers who probably speak slowly and clearly. Hence, when they fail to understand
every word while listening, they stop listening and lose the thread, which seems to be the reason
for state of panic and worrying they usually show before and during listening.
In relation to those problems, we cannot deny that students motivation plays important role in
learning listening. As mentioned in Brown (2006: 1), another theme will be motivation. Because
listening is so challenging, teachers need to think carefully about making the activities successful
and the content interesting. We can create the interest activity in learning listening such as by
listening English songs. By creating of high students motivation, it hoped can reduce the
listening difficulties. Furthermore, the students will be stimulated and not be panic or worry
when they are learning listening.
As mentioned in background, the students of MA Pancasila are very difficult understand English
through listening. The students could not understand the meaning of the material after playing
the tape for the three times in class. Furthermore, the students might gradually lose their selfconfidence. They are afraid to go to the lab to listen to English again. When they are face to face
with listening material, they have little confidence in their listening comprehension abilities.
Therefore, they may not understand them because they have to battle the psychological
suggestion that they could not understand spoken English.
3. Principles of Teaching Listening Skill
When teaching listening skill, the teachers have to know the principles. There are some
principles of teaching listening skill (http://teachinglisteningcomprehension.html), they are:
a. Listening should receive primary attention in the early stage of ESL instruction.
b. Maximize the use of material that is relevant to students real life.
c. Maximize the use of authentic language.
d. Vary the materials in terms of speakers gender, age, dialect, accent, topic, speed, noise, level,
and genre.
e. Always ask students to listen with a purpose and allow them to show their comprehension in a
task.
f. Language material intended to be used for training listening comprehension should never be
presented visually first.
Furthermore, the teachers have to take attention the principles in teaching listening skill. As
mentioned above, one of the principles in teaching listening is the teachers always ask students to
listen with the purpose of listening. So, we can help students listen more effectively if we spend
some time teaching them about purposes for listening. One way to do that is to use a simple

dialogue in order to show how they might listen differently depending on their goals.
4. Listening Material
The material is very important for the students to improve their listening skill. A suitable material
can make the students want to learn. The material which suitable with the students have to
interesting, in the right level of students difficulty, and presented in various activities (Puspita in
Hasyuni 2006: 4). The interesting materials that are familiar meaningful and various should be
provided for the students. It can help them to understand more easily.
Beside of that, the material should be as natural as possible in order that students can practice
and imitate the original voice from the speakers. As mentioned by Paulston in Hasyuni (2006: 4),
listening materials should consist of sample of natural language from as many different sources
as possible, so the students will have experience with many varieties of topics and situations.
In concluding, the teachers are better to know the students interest in learning listening with
kind activities. If not, students will get bored and do not want to learn anymore. The use of songs
also can motivate the students to attend lesson and pay attention in class, because songs can be
used for a wide variety of learning and teaching activities.
5. A Good Listener
The students can be said that they are good in listening if they are active in learning listening
process (Http://www.learningthroughlistening.org). The characteristics of active listeners as
below:
a. Make eye contact/follow the listening
b. Summarize the listening material has heard
c. Make connection what are hearing to what already know
d. Ask and answer the question during the learning listening process.
In other hand, Saricoban (1999) says that a good listener is one who has the enabling skills. The
enabling skill characterizes the listener can follow the material by well. The skills are:
a. predicting what people are going to talk about
b. guessing at unknown words or phrases without panic
c. using ones own knowledge of the subject to help one understand
d. identifying relevant points; rejecting irrelevant information
e. retaining relevant points (note-taking, summarizing)
f. recognizing discourse marker, cohesive devices, including linking words, pronouns,
references, etc
g. understanding different intonation patterns and uses of stress
h. understanding inferred information.
In summary, the students are said well in listening skill if they are active when learning listening.
The activeness can be seen from the students motivation and enthusiasm during learning
listening. The students who active in listening are characterized they always focus on what they
hear, they ask and answer the questions, and they can make a summary from the materials given
in the post-listening.
6. Types of Listening Activities
We always have a purpose for listening. We may listen to radio in the morning to know the up to
date reports. We may listen to a song for pleasure. We listen in different ways based on our
purpose. Having a purpose helps us listen more effectively.
There are some types of activities that can be applied in learning listening. Ur (1996: 113)

provides four of listening activities as follow:


a. No overt response, the students do not have to do anything in response to the listening;
however facial expression and body language often show if they are following or not. It includes
stories, songs, and entertainment.
b. Short responses, includes obeying instructions, ticking of items, true/false, detecting mistakes,
cloze, guessing definitions, and skimming and scanning.
c. Longer responses, includes answering questions, note-taking, paraphrasing and translating,
summarizing, and long gap-filling.
d. Extended responses, here, the listening as only a jump-off point for extended reading, writing
or speaking: in other words, there are combined skills activities. It includes problem-solving and
interpretation.
Beside of that, there are the other activities to improve listening skill that provided by PolyU
ELC (http://elc.polyu.edu.hk):
a. Listen to English pop songs, includes write a summary, sing along with the melody, do a cloze
exercise, and dictate lyrics.
b. Listen to TV news reports, includes predications keep a diary, and record the news.
c. Listen to film, includes read film reviews, make a gap-filling exercise, cover the subtitles, and
read the novel of the film.
d. Listen to TV programs or videos, includes follow instructions without looking at the screen,
cover the subtitles, and watch the first language version in advance.
e. Listen to radio, includes listen to fast speech, approach other resources in advance, listen to
colloquial expressions, and write a summary.
From the types of listening above, it is regarded that songs activity can be used in learning
listening process, and it will be hoped can motivate students in improving their listening skill.
B. Song
According to Hornby (1990: 1133), song is a piece of music with words that is sung. Song is also
a great language package that bundles culture, vocabulary, listening, grammar and a host of other
language skills in just a few rhymes. Songs can also provide a relaxed lesson on a hot boring day.
They can also form the basis for many lessons (Futonge, 2005).
Almost everyone loves songs. It is a part of our language and life from before birth onwards. As
a baby, we often hear our mother and father sing a song to deliver us sleep in the bedroom. When
young children, we play, sing, and dance to a rhymes. As adolescents, we are consumes by the
beat of popular songs artist in the world. As adults, we often hear song on television, movies,
theater, and even nightly news. When we work, when we play, song is there to reinforce or every
mood and emotion.
From explanation above, we are suggested to include songs in language learning as well. Songs
had heard by the people in the world since they are born until died. So, listening to the songs has
been a habitual and liked by everybody. Beside of that, by songs we can provide a relaxed lesson
on a hot boring day.
1. The Use of Song as Authentic Listening Material
The use of authentic materials is an important factor to take into consideration when designing
listening skill materials. By using such listening materials, the learner is given the chance to
develop the skills needed to comprehend and to use language that is commonly found in real
situations. Therefore, it is important to take the opportunity wherever possible to expose students

to example of real language usage to help them become more communicatively competent.
According to Ur (1996: 107), listening activities based on simulated real life situation and likely
to be most interesting and motivating to do than contrived textbook comprehension exercise. The
following features characterize real life listening activity:
a. We listen for a purpose and with certain expecting
b. We make an immediately response to what we hear
c. We see the person we are listening to
d. There are some visual or environment clues as to the meaning of what is heard
e. Stretches of hand discourse is spontaneous and therefore differs from formal spoken prose in
the amount of redundancy, noise and colloquialism, and it is auditory character.
From the features above, song is one of the authentic listening materials. Ross (2006) says that
the example of authentic listening materials is listening to song to learn more about well-known
bands that sing in English. As we know wherever we are, songs always follow us at home, at
school, at office, at cars, and so on. So, we can directly listen to the song and also interest to
learn the value of language in it.
When designing lessons and teaching materials to further develop listening comprehension skills,
students need to be motivated and stay motivated. This is best accomplished by determining the
suitable of the listening material such as the use of song as authentic material. The use of song
stimulates and motivates students to comprehend the content of materials.
2. Factors Contributing to Listening Comprehension of Song
The possibility of using songs in English as a foreign language class has been actively
considering for the last two decades. It is considered because songs have many value of
language. Orlova (2003), states that it is possible to suggest that among the methodological
purposes with songs are used in class, it is possible to rank the following:
a. Practicing the rhythm, stress and the intonation patterns of the English language.
b. Teaching vocabulary, especially in the vocabulary reinforcement stage
c. Teaching grammar. In this respect songs are especially favored by teachers while investigating
the use of the tenses.
d. Teaching speaking. For this purpose, songs and mainly their lyrics are employed as a stimulus
for class discussion
e. Teaching listening comprehension
f. Developing writing skills. For this purpose a song can be used in a variety of ways.
According to Lynch (2008), there are three factors that contribute to listening comprehension of
song, they are:
a. Use of new vocabulary, idioms and expressions It needs to address the new material offered
in each song. This includes grammar, vocabulary and usage.
b. Pronunciation and accent of the singer Every native speaker doesnt pronounce or sing with
the same accent. Students may be exposed to an accent which is outside the realm of what they
might normally hear in context.
g. Use of new grammar and structure Song researchers and singers are notoriously loose when
it comes to use of grammar, structure, pronunciation, stress and other language factors applied to
songs. The teacher must prepare for this.
In additional, the use of songs in teaching and learning English as a foreign language is felt much
needed. From the songs, we can learn many things such as vocabulary, grammar, listening,
speaking, writing, and especially in listening. .

3. The Criteria of Song Selection


The important thing about choosing a song to do with a class is to make sure that the lyrics are
clear. It can be very frustrating for the students not to understand a word. The recording should
also be a good one. A studio album is probably going to be better than a live version.
Furthermore, M. Lynch (2008), provides three principal song selection criteria, they are:
a. Use songs that are popular with the students whenever possible. Unfortunately, students
frequently select songs for classroom use which are objectionable in some way making the song
unusable.
b. Songs must have clear and understandable lyrics. Nothing is worse than a song almost nobody
can understand. If you have trouble understanding the lyrics by listening, then another song
needs to be selected.
c. Songs should have an appropriate theme. Theres enough bad news, negativity and violence in
the world already. Songs with any type of negative theme should be avoided. There are plenty of
positive, upbeat, even humorous songs available.
In order hand, Orlova (2003) says that while encouraging students to choose the songs for
discussion, it needs to ask them to following criteria below:
a. The song must be an example of a particular musical trend
b. There shouldnt be any form of violence in it.
c. The song should contain a certain artistic image.
It is realized when teaching the students; we should choose the songs that suitable level of
difficulty. The suitable of the song is a particularly important issue. It should be known whether
the students are going to like the song or not.
4. The use of Song Procedure
There are various ways of using songs in the classroom. The level of the students, the interests
and the age of the learners, the grammar point to be studied, and the song itself have determinant
roles on the procedure. Apart from them, it mainly depends on the creativity of the teacher.
According to Saricoban and Metin (2000), at the primary level of singing the song, the prosodic
features of the language is emphasized. At the higher levels, where the practice of grammar
points is at the foreground, songs can be used with several techniques. Some examples of these
techniques are:
a. Gap fills or close texts
b. Focus questions
c. True-false statements
d. Put these lines into the correct sequence
e. Dictation
f. Add a final verse
g. Circle the antonyms/synonyms of the given words
h. Discuss
According to Yoo (2002), procedure of songs activity can be done by steps below:
a. Pre-listening
1) As a warm-up or schema building activity, ask students what they know about American pop
culture. You might also want to bring some pictures or CD's of popular actors or singers to class.
2) Pass out the cloze activity handout, and have students read the lyrics and figure out what the
missing words might be, using their knowledge in grammar. Have the students compare their

guesses with their neighbors. Ask for volunteers to share their guesses with the class.
b. While-listening
Students listen for the missing words. Play the song once, and ask students whether they need to
listen to the song again. If they do, play it one more time.
c. Post-listening
After the second listening, go over the answers with the class. If necessary, replay the parts
where students had trouble understanding the words. Go over grammar points as necessary.
However in teaching listening by songs, there are three stages; pre-listening, while-listening, and
post-listening. Beside of that, the activity can be formed gap fills or close texts, true-false
statements, and dictation.
5. Benefit of Song
By using songs in the classroom, students can practice their listening skills and increase their
cultural knowledge. Almost any song can be used in the ESL classroom. The pronunciation and
rhythm lessons are the same as for the children's songs and the lessons may help students
become more interested in different types of songs. Practicing lyric reading, studying the
vocabulary, and listening to various songs can help students become more familiar with popular
songs and make them more confident in their ability to listen and understand the world around
them (Brown, 2006).
The other benefits of using songs in the classroom are songs can be used:
a. to present a topic, a language point, lexis, etc.
b. to practice a language point, lexis, etc.
c. to focus on common learner errors in a more direct way
d. to encourage extensive and intensive listening
e. to stimulate discussion of attitudes and feelings
f. to encourage creativity and use of imagination
g. to provide a relaxed classroom atmosphere
h. to bring variety and fun to learning
From explanation above, its considered that songs have much benefit. Some of them are songs
can motivate the students and make them more confidence in their ability to listen the materials.
C. Previous Studies
There are some studies related with the use of songs in learning listening. First, a research done
by Fismar (2003) entitled The Correlation between Delighting in Listening to English Songs
and Students Achievement in Listening Comprehension of First Semester of English Study
Program at Universitas Bengkulu Academic Year 2001-2002, where the result is the English
songs are helpful in stimulating the development of students listening comprehension.
Another study is a research done by Tee and Fah (2005) that use of songs in the teaching of life
skills modules for ITE students. The result is bringing in music and playing songs in the
classroom motivates the students to attend lessons and pay attention in class.
From those previous studies, this research is different in two cases. First, the study does not make
the correlation of using songs with listening achievement. Second, the study does not using songs
only to motivate the students to attend lessons and pay attention in class. Furthermore, the study
of this research is using songs to improve students listening skill.

CHAPTER III
METHODOLOGY
A. Research Design
This research was a classroom action research. It meant that an action research which is
conducted in a classroom to increase the quality of learning teaching practices (Arikunto, S.,
Suhardjono & Supardi, 2008: 2). In other hands, it can be defined that it is an action that is done
to solve the problem in the classroom. Therefore, this research purposed to solve the problems in
teaching learning listening skill.
In conducting this research, the researcher asked an English teacher of MA Pancasila to help
him. As mentioned in Arikunto, S., Suhardjono & Supardi (2008: 22), it is suggested for the
beginner researcher to make collaboration in conducting an action research. The teacher helps
the researcher in planning, action, observation, and reflection. Moreover, it is also possible for
the researcher to ask much suggestion from her in conducting of the research.
B. Subject of the Research
Subject of the research was the second year students of MA Pancasila Bengkulu in academic
year 2008/2009 that was consisted of 18 students, 8 males and 10 females. Most of the students
are from some villages. In their some junior high schools in villages, usually there is no language
lab to train their listening skills. So, listening activities are not common for the students. When
they come to MA Pancasila, they cannot adjust their study habits very quickly. Because of that,
we need to find suitable method such as by using song to make them enjoy the learning process.
C. Setting of the Research
According to Arikunto, S., Suhardjono & Supardi (2008:39), there is no population and sample
in an action research, but it is known as setting of the research. It is a place where the research is
conducted. Furthermore, the setting of the research was at Madrasah Aliyah (MA) Pancasila
Bengkulu.
D. Research Procedures
According to Arikunto, S., Suhardjono & Supardi (2008: 20), there are four steps in action
research: planning, actions, observation, and reflection. Clearly, can be seen below:
1. Pre-test, to know the score of students listening skill before treatments.
2. Treatments, the effort to improve students motivation in learning listening. There will be two
cycles in this step:
a. Cycle 1
1) Planning, making a plan what is needed and what will be done in action, and making a lesson
plan.
2) Actions, applying of songs activity in teaching listening based on the lesson plan.
3) Observation, observing and writing the situation and condition during the action.
4) Reflection, analyzing to know the effect of action and fixing the planning for the next circle
b. Cycle 2
1) Planning, identifying the problem from action 1 and deciding the problem solving.
2) Actions, doing the program of action 2.
3) Observation, collecting data in action 2.
4) Reflection, evaluation of action 2.

3. Post-test, to know the score of students listening skill after giving the treatments.
E. Research Instrument
The instrument of this research was test; song sheets (lyric) that were given in pre-test, actions,
and post-test. The instrument for pre-test and post-test was the same, which was taken from
Futonge (2007). The test consisted of 30 items; 15 items of filling in the missing words and 15
items choosing the correct words in bold. The tests for two actions were adopted from Isabel
Perez (www.isabelperaz.com), which consisted of 11 items of filling in the blanks for action 1,
and 10 items of choosing the correct words in bold for action 2.
F. Instrument Validity
According to Lather in Arikunto, S., Suhardjono & Supardi (2006: 128), there are four strategies
to make the instrument is valid. The strategies are:
1. Face validity, the observers altogether check, make a score, and decide each other the validity
of instrument in process of collaboration.
2. Triangulation, the instrument is taken by using some data sources to improve the quality of
evaluation.
3. Critical reflection, the cycles are planned to improve the quality of understanding.
4. Catalytic validity, the instrument is gotten from the researchers knowledge himself as the
effort to get improvement.
In this research, the researcher used face validity and critical reflection from the researcher and
an English teacher of MA Pancasila Bengkulu. It means that the instrument was gotten by the
researcher himself from some sources, and it was always discussed together in order to get the
students improvement.
G. Technique of Data Collection
The data was collected by test and observation. Observation was done to know the students
attitude (qualitative data) during the research. Meanwhile, quantitative data was taken from the
students score in pre-test, two actions, and post-test. The data in pre-test was taken to know the
students listening skill before treatment. In actions, the data was collected twice; in action 1 and
2. The data was to know students development during treatment. Then, post-test was taken to
know students ability in listening skill after giving the treatment.
H. Technique of Data Analysis
After collecting, the data was analyzed by the researcher in steps below.
1. Knowing the students individual score, by the formula:
Where:
S = score
= the students score
= total of sums
(Arikunto, 2002)
2. Knowing mean score each test, by the formula:
Where:
M = mean score

= total of the students score


N = number of the students
(Arikunto, 2002)
3. Comparing the result of each test to know whether using songs can improve students listening
skill or not.
The score of objects were interpreted by consulting with the following interval of five scales the
students score based on the scoring at MA Pancasila Bengkulu:
Table 1. The five scales interval of students score
Scores Categories
85-100
75-84
60-74
40-59
0-39 Very good
Good
Moderate
Low
Failure
In this research, the students would be hoped to get the score upper to moderate category. It
meant this research would be finished if the students got a good or very good score category. In
additional, the target was 75 to 100 students mean score.
CHAPTER IV
RESULT AND DISCUSSION
A. Research Setting Description
This research was conducted at Madrasah Aliyah (MA) Pancasila Bengkulu. MA Pancasila was
established on July 17, 1974. It is about 2500 H2 and addressed at Kelurahan Jembatan Kecil,
Kecamatan Gading Cempaka, Kota Bengkulu. It is located at the city and rounded with many
citizens houses. It makes this school easy to be gotten by using various kinds of vehicles, such
as cars or motorcycles. Although it is rounded with many houses, it still felt conducive,
comfortable and save.
The establishment this school was inspired from the villagers sake for their children to continue
study to Islamic senior high school after graduated from junior high schools at the villages. It
grows and increases from the idealism and society need to prepare the human resource that have
high quality in knowledge. The core of the education in this school is a combination of the public
and religion education. It is purposed after graduated from this school; the students are ready to
continue their study to higher level education or to look for a job.
In conclusion, MA Pancasila Bengkulu has a strategy place which make the mobility can run
well. Beside of that, this school was established to create the students that have high quality. It
has about 900 alumnus and they have continued their study at some colleges and universities.
1. The Condition of Teachers
MA Pancasila Bengkulu has 18 teachers, 12 males and 18 females. All of them are scholars who
graduated from some universities in Bengkulu city and the other cities. Every teacher teaches

different subject of study, but some of them teach more than one class.
There are two English teachers at this school; one teaches the first and second year, and another
one teaches only the third year students. Both of them are graduated from English education. So,
they are competence enough in teaching English.
Sometimes in teaching English, they also find some problems in motivating the students,
especially in teaching listening. They are difficult to find suitable method in order the students
enjoy the material given. Furthermore in this research, the researcher with the teacher helping
used song to improve the students listening skill.
2. The Condition of Students
In academic year 2008-2009, the number students of MA Pancasila Bengkulu are 70 students
that consist of 31 males and 39 females. Class X consists of 21 students, class XI consists 18
students, and class XII consists of 31 students. Clearly, it can be shown in the table below.
Table 2. The number of Students MA Pancasila Bengkulu
No Class Students Total
Male Female
1
2
3X
XI
XII 6
8
14 15
10
17 21
18
31
TOTAL 28 42 70
Most of the students come from villages which so far away from Bengkulu city. In their some
junior high schools, there is no language laboratory or there is the lab but cannot be used because
broken or something error. This condition makes them rarely learn listening. So, when they are in
this school, they cannot adjust their habit quickly.
Every day, they get up about 4:30 a.m. They go to school at 7 a.m. and come to the boarding at
12 a.m. At 14 p.m they have to come back to school for learning the boarding school subject.
Furthermore, this schedule makes them tired and has lack of motivation in learning English.
In this research, the researcher investigated Class XI that consists of 18 students. The students
were known have low motivation in learning listening. By using song material, they hoped can
be motivated and improved their listening skill.
3. The Condition of Facilities
The Facilities are very important in teaching and learning process. Although a school has good
teachers and students, the goal of education can be failure without supporting by good facilities.
MA Pancasila Bengkulu is a school which has good facilities. The facilities are shown in the
table below.

Table 3. The facilities of MA Pancasila Bengkulu


No Facility Total Condition
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12 Headmasters room
Teachers room
Administrator room
Classroom
OSIS room
Library
Laboratory
Mosque
Water closet
Tape and sound system
Whiteboard
Computer 1
1
1
3
1
1
1
1
2
1
6
2 Good
Good
Good
Good
Good
Good
Good
Good
Good
Good
Good

good
Furthermore, the facilities for teaching listening such as classroom, laboratory, and tape are
good. However, it is still needed the skilled hands to use them.
B. Research Finding
Before conducting this research, the researcher had observed the condition of the second year
students of MA Pancasila Bengkulu in learning listening skill. The students had little confidence
in their listening ability when they were face to face with listening material. Furthermore, it
made them had low motivation and it could make them stop learning. From that reason, the
researcher tried to grow the students motivation by using songs. It hoped can improve their
ability in listening skill.
For the first step, the students were given pre-test to know their ability in listening skill before
doing the treatment. The second, the researcher did the treatment in two cycles as the effort to
improve the students listening skill. Each cycles consisted of 4 stages; planning, action,
observation, and reflection. The last, the students were given a post-test to know students
listening skill after giving the treatment.
The result of this research described that students had improved their listening skill. In pre-test,
they got a mean score 44,55 and in post-test they got 75,38. It means that there is a significant
difference between pre-test and post-test. Beside of that, the treatment in two cycles showed the
students improvement in their motivation. They were very enthusiast during learning listening
by song. For detail, it will be explained below.
1. Pre-test
A pre-test was given before doing the treatment. The pre-test was to know students ability in
listening skill. It consisted of 30 items; 15 items of filling in the missing words and 15 items
choosing the correct words in bold. In this test, a piece of song was played on a tape and the
students have to answer the question while listening the song. The test given was the same with
the post-test which was adopted from Futonge (2007). The result of pre-test can be seen in the
table below:
Tabel 4. The score distribution in pre-test
Students Number True
Answer Total of
Items Score Note
1 12 30 40 Low
2 14 30 46 Low
3 14 30 46 Low
4 13 30 43 Low
5 14 30 46 Low
6 10 30 33 Failure
7 14 30 46 Low
8 12 30 40 Low
9 20 30 66 Moderate
10 13 30 43 Low
11 17 30 56 Low
12 10 30 33 Failure

13 11 30 36 Failure
14 17 30 56 Low
15 11 30 36 Failure
16 12 30 40 Low
17 17 30 56 Low
18 12 30 40 Low
TOTAL 802
MEAN SCORE 44,55 Low
From the table above, its known that the students mean score was 44,55. It means that the
students listening skill was still low. Most of them got score under 60. Only one student got
moderate score, four students were failure, and the others got low score.
During pre-test, the researcher also observed students attitude in answer the question. They
enjoyed the test given but they were still confused in identifying the missing words in the
questions.
From the observation and the students score in pre-test, it indicated that listening by using song
could create the students motivation. It was a successful effort, but it still needed the treatment
of suitable song activity in order to get the higher score.
2. Cycle 1
a. Planning
The data from pre-test was taken to arrange a plan in cycle 1. In this stage, the researcher
discussed with an English teacher of MA Pancasila Bengkulu about what should be done in
action 1. After identifying the problems in pre-test, the song Youre Beautiful by James Blunt
was chosen for the material in action 1. The reason of choosing this song was based on the
criteria of song selection; the song was popular enough with the students, it had clear and
understandable lyric, and it was suitable level difficulty.
After choosing the song, still in discussion, the researcher arranged a lesson plan. For the first
action, the material focused on simple past tense, synonym, antonym, and diphthong. The
procedure of action will be explained later.
b. Action
The action was divided into 3 steps; pre-listening, while-listening, and post listening.
1. Pre-listening
a) The research warmed the students up by asking them questions; what they know about English
songs and who artist they like. They were also asked to compare English songs with Indonesian
songs.
b) The researcher explained about the procedure of listening activity.
c) The papers materials were given to the students.
d) The students were given several minutes to read the material and guess the answer.
2. While-listening
a) After listening, the answers were gone over with class.
b) Replayed the part where students had trouble understanding the words.
c) Went over grammar points, the use simple past tense.
d) The researcher leaded discussion of the synonym, antonym, and diphthong.

e) Making a summary about the moral values/theme of the song.


f) The song was played again and students sang along.
3. Post-listening
a) Students listened to the song and answered the question.
b) The song was played once, and asked the students whether they need to listen to the song
again or not. If they do, the song was played one more time.
c. Observation
During the action, the researcher observed the students activity when they were learning
listening. The researcher found the students enjoyed the material given. Some of them asked
some and answer the questions. But the other students were still confused to follow the activity,
and they were talking with their neighbor.
d. Reflection
To know how far the students achievement in cycle 1, the researcher did an evaluation by giving
the students a test. The test was summary from material in action 1. It consisted of 11 items
which adopted from www.isabelperez.com. The result of the test is shown in the table below.
Tabel 5. The score distribution in cycle 1
Students Number True
Answer Total of
Items Score Note
1 5 11 45 Low
2 5 11 45 Low
3 6 11 54 Low
4 6 11 54 Low
5 6 11 54 Low
6 3 11 27 Failure
7 7 11 63 Moderate
8 5 11 45 Low
9 8 11 72 Good
10 6 11 54 Low
11 6 11 54 Low
12 0 11 0 Failure
13 4 11 36 Failure
14 7 11 63 Moderate
15 5 11 45 Low
16 5 11 45 Low
17 8 11 72 Good
18 5 11 45 Low
TOTAL 873
MEAN SCORE 48,5 Low
Its known that mean score of the students was still low, only 48,5. However, it had improved
from the pre-test. The failure students were decreased from four students became three students.
Even though, the next cycle was still needed to get a better result.

3. Cycle 2
a. Planning
Like planning in cycle 1, the data in cycle 2 was taken from reflection of the last action. From
cycle 1, the researcher discussed about what the weakness of action 1. The problem such as there
were some students still did not focus, and difficult to identifying the missing words. So, the
researcher prepared song Big World by Emilia. The material was adopted from the same
source with the material in action 1.
b. Action
1. Pre-listening
a) Warmed up activity to motivate the students
b) The researcher explained the listening procedure
2. While-listening
a) The students listened the song and answered the question
b) The researcher leaded the discussion about homophone
3. Post-listening
a) Summarizing of the material
b) The song was played once more and every student sang it together.
c. Observation
From the action 2, the researcher found that all of students were enthusiast in learning listening.
They were also being active listeners. If they had problem, they asked directly. They were not
talking with their friend during the lesson. They were full attention and enjoyed the materials.
d. Reflecting
The data by observation above was shown that students have higher motivation than before. It
indicated that students interest and enthusiast to the material. However, it is still needed the
quantitative data to know students improvement in listening skill. So, the next evaluation was
given again to the students. The test was summary from material in action 2. It consisted of 10
items which also adopted from www.isabelperez.com. The result of the test is shown in the table
below.
Tabel 6. The score distribution in cycle 2
Students Number True
Answer Total of
Items Score Note
1 5 10 50 Low
2 5 10 50 Low
3 5 10 50 Low
4 6 10 60 Moderate
5 5 10 50 Low
6 5 10 50 Low
7 6 10 60 Moderate
8 8 10 80 Good
9 8 10 80 Good
10 6 10 60 Moderate

11 9 10 90 Very good
12 5 10 50 Low
13 5 10 50 Low
14 6 10 60 Moderate
15 6 10 60 Moderate
16 6 10 60 Moderate
17 7 10 70 Moderate
18 5 10 50 Low
TOTAL 1080
MEAN SCORE 60 Moderate
It was a good result; there was no a failure student in this cycle. There was also one student got
very good score and two students got good score. The next cycle wouldnt be done because the
moderate score was enough to do a post-test.
4. Post-test
A post-test was given to know students achievement during the treatment. It consisted of 30
items; 15 items of filling in the missing words and 15 items choosing the correct words in bold.
The test given was the same with the pre-test which was adopted from Futonge (2007). The
result of post-test can be seen in the table below:
Tabel 7. The score distribution in post-test
Students Number True
Answer Total of
Items Score Note
1 20 30 66 Moderate
2 23 30 76 Good
3 23 30 76 Good
4 22 30 73 Moderate
5 21 30 70 Moderate
6 21 30 70 Moderate
7 23 30 76 Good
8 24 30 80 Good
9 27 30 90 Very good
10 21 30 70 Moderate
11 27 30 90 Very good
12 19 30 63 Moderate
13 21 30 70 Moderate
14 25 30 83 Good
15 23 30 76 Good
16 23 30 76 Good
17 26 30 86 Very good
18 20 30 66 Moderate
TOTAL 1357
MEAN SCORE 75,38 Good

From the table above, the students were got mean score 75,38 (good). So, there was a significant
different between the score of students listening skill in pre-test and post-test.
C. Discussion
Based on the score from pre-test, two cycles and post-test, the researcher could analyze them to
look for the result of this research. First, the researcher analyzed the students scores categories
from the five scales interval. See below:
Table 8. The students score categories
No Categories
Pre-test Cycle 1 Cycle 2 Post-test
1
2
3
4
5 Very good
Good
Moderate
Low
Failure 0
0
1
13
40
2
2
11
31
2
7
8
03
7
8
0
0
From the table above, most of students got low score in pre-test, cycle 1, and cycle 2. Even
though, the number of students who got low score decreased from 13 students to no student. The
students score were better from the last. Clearly, it could be seen in the chart below.
In pre-test there was no student who got very good and good score, but in post-test there were 3
students who got very good score and 7 students got good score. Furthermore, there were 13
students got low score and 4 students were failure in pre-test. Meanwhile, in post-test they
increased the score until there was no student who got the low score and failure.
In additional, the result could be seen by analyzing the score of each test. We could compare

them to know whether the score was increasing or not.


Table 9. The comparing score
Each Test Mean Score Note
Pre-test 44,55 Low
Cycle 1 48,5 Low
Cycle 2 60 Moderate
Post-test 75,38 Good
The table above shows that the mean score was increasing in each test. In pre-test they got low
score, in cycle 1 they were still low, in cycle 2 they got moderate, and in post-test they got good
score. The students improving could be seen in the chart below.
From chart above, it is shown the students always had improvement in listening skill, from low
score to good score. The score indicates that the use of song can improve the students listening
skill. Furthermore from the observation in two cycles, the students looked enjoy the material,
they were enthusiast, and it made them motivated in learning listening.
CHAPTER V
CONCLUSION AND SUGGESTION
A. Conclusion
Based on the data analysis in chapter IV, we can conclude that the use of song in the classroom
motivates the students to attend lessons and pay attention in class. Concept of the use authentic
listening material such song embodied in the lyrics of popular songs sung by their favorite artists
that they idolize are espousing the same values and the same principle that are taught in the
authentic material, things like commitment, responsibility, love and compassion. Getting the
message through the lyrics of the songs is much more hip and cool. Songs are also easily
available, songs present new vocabulary and expression in context, through songs students
become familiar with the pronunciation of native speaker, songs provide topics for discussion,
and finally most students enjoy listening and analyzing song.
The effectiveness of using song can also be seen from pre-test, two cycles, and post-test. In pretest, the students got mean score 44,55, in cycle 1 they got 48,5, in cycle 2 they got 60, and the
last in post-test they got 75,38. It shows that the students listening skill have improved in each
test and cycle. In other hand, the use of songs could improve the students listening skill.
B. Suggestion
Based on the conclusion above, the researcher would like to propose some suggestions as
bellow:
1. Because of limited of the time, so it is better to the other researchers to continue this research
in order to get more accurate data, and can create the suitable activity in listening skill by using
song.
2. From the result of this research, it is better for the teacher to use songs in teaching listening
skill, because songs have much value of language and can create students motivation.
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