Introduction 2-4 Chapter I developing English vocabulary of students through role-playing games to B1 levels


Chapter I Developing English vocabulary of students through role-playing games to B1 level



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Chapter I Developing English vocabulary of students through role-playing games to B1 level.

1.1 Vocabulary is key element of students’ understanding and communicative ability in any language .

Vocabulary should be integrated into the teaching of those four skills-listening, speaking, reading, and writing. Teachers cannot teach vocabulary independently, unless all of levels will get confused and maybe frustrated in learning English. In order to communicate well in a foreign language, students should acquire an adequate number of words and should know how to use them accurately.

In reality, English as a foreign language is taught separately from the language skills. The teacher gives the vocabulary, asks the learners to write it down in their notebooks, and then finally they have to memorize it for the next meeting. This traditional way is quite boring even makes the learners hate English language lesson.

The teacher should give the materials through an interesting technique in order to make the learners enjoy the teaching-learning process. As Nation (in Linse, 2006) claims that “teachers should facilitate vocabulary learning by teaching learners useful words and by

helping learners figure out meanings on their own”. Moreover, the learners are children who love to play and learn best when they are enjoying themselves.. They are not always aware that they are learning language.

Vocabulary is one of the components of a language, besides sound system, grammar and culture. Students who want to learn a target language, in this case English, of course have to learn those elements.

Teaching vocabulary plays an important role in language acquisition because the mastery of vocabulary will help students master all the language skills- speaking, listening, writing, and reading. Vocabulary will make students practice the structure more easily. It is

useful for students in order to communicate in daily life and will strengthen belief that English can be used to express the same ideas or feelings they express in their native language (Finocchiaro, 1974). In the teaching of English vocabulary to young learners, teachers are expected to have the skills of language in simple English. In other words, the teaching of English aims at giving introduction to the language, which means that the teaching processes have to utilize the existing context of situation. Teachers have to do this because teaching English to children is different from adults, especially in vocabulary teaching. Teachers should try to give as clear as possible the explanation of the meaning of the words being taught by using a technique. Nation (1928) states that a good vocabulary teaching technique has the following things:

(1) It interests the learners.

(2) It makes the learners give attention to the form meaning or use of the words.

(3) It gives a chance for repetition. It affirms that choosing carefully and correctly the vocabulary which appropriate for children is the important things for teachers to consider.

“If language structure makes up the skeleton of language, then it is vocabulary that provides the vital organs and flesh,” (Hammer, 1991). Thus, the magnitude of vocabulary teaching and learning is never too far to be highlighted. For B1 level students perhaps it is less difficult to learn vocabulary items for the first time than to consolidate and remember them. We often hear young learners complain that they keep learning and forgetting.

When English language intermediate level students are acquiring new vocabulary, they need concrete methods to collect, store, and retrieve words for retention and future use. Therefore, it is necessary to find out effective methods to help young learners retain new words in long-term memory.

Memory is crucial in vocabulary learning and the benefits of revision and repetition have been clearly demonstrated in studies of vocabulary learning (O’Dell). According to Rubin (1987, p. 29), learning is the process by which information is obtained, stored, retrieved, and used”. The word “use” can mean “interactional communication” and “vocabulary practice” (Schmitt, 1997). Therefore, the teacher needs to provide initial encoding of new words and then “subsequent retrieved experiences” (Rubin, 1987). Similarly, research suggests that if learners see or use a word in a way different from the way they first met it, then better learning is achieved. Schmitt (2000) also states that the amount of exposure can affect second language vocabulary acquisition. In fact, research in vocabulary acquisition by Nation (1990) reveals that students require at least five to sixteen exposures to a new word before learning it. Also, Bunch (2009) points out that English language learners will benefit from a variety of activities aimed at increasing exposure to key vocabulary.

Besides, vocabulary acquisition is related to the effect of repetition on learning (Laufer, 1997). It can be said that repetition is one of the most effective ways to learn new words. Similarly, according to Carter and McCarthy (1988, ), new words are forgotten if they are not recycled in some way and make it into our long-term memory. In order to learn vocabulary, words have to be recycled numerous times. In fact, providing incidental encounters with words is one method to facilitate vocabulary acquisition (Sökmen, 1997). Through regular recycling, children can be given opportunities to meet the same vocabulary, embedded in different contexts, languages, and activity types. This not only improves their recall and develops memory processes, but also extends their understanding and associations of vocabulary in an ever expanding network of meanings and use. Ellis (1997) shares the same view that repetition is a strategy for consolidating vocabulary. In addition, Thornbury (2002) summarizes the process of meaning acquisition in L1 children in three basic stages:

(1) labeling (attaching a label to a concept),

(2) categorization (grouping a number of objects under a particular label), and

(3) network building (connections between related words).

Stages of teaching vocabulary

According to Doff (1988), there are four stages in teaching vocabulary, namely presentation, practice, production, and review.




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