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Lecturer of English Teaching




Vocabulary seems has a very important role in studying English. Many
people believe that the starting point in studying a foreign language is by
learning words or vocabularies. Perhaps this is true because how someone will
communicate with other people without having vocabularies (words) in their

1. Introduction

A. A Brief Description of Vocabulary
One of the most important language components was vocabulary. The
mastery of it would be very helpful when someone was learning English.
Having a great mastery on it would also facilitate him to comprehend. The
subject learnt in which it was in English.
Vocabulary is one of the English components, which has to be mastered
and acquired by students in learning a new language. Allen (1983 : 5) give one
reason for the emphasis on vocabulary in English learning.
Scholars are taking a new interest in the study of the word meaning. A number
to research studies recently dealt with lexical problems (problems related to
word). Through research the scholar are finding that the lexical problems
frequently interfere with communication. Communications break down when
people do not use the right word. Such discoveries by scholars do not surprise
classroom teachers. Teachers have never doubted the value of learning
vocabulary. They know communication stop when learners lack the necessary

From above statement it can be argued that vocabulary is one of most
important part in communication, because communication cannot run well
when people do not use the right words. Vocabulary must be mastered by
students to get a succes in learning English. They will find some difficulties in
their learning process without mastering it, since most learning activities such
as listening, reading, speaking and writing need a large and solid vocabulary.
As it is stated by Michael Bennet (1991 : 63) : Yet everyone, especially the
English learners need a lot of vocabulary to succeed in their learning process
because reading and listening are the ways they learn.
According to Morgan (1961 : 192), says : Vocabulary is a number of
words person possesses which is considered to be ones vocabulary, so
vocabulary is the word with has meaning and should be posed by a person. The
students who have a good vocabulary are more successful in studying English.
A good vocabulary is a vital part of effective studying. Vocabulary
includes all the word they normally use in daily activities of listening, speaking,
reading and writing. The vocabulary increases ability to understand a
conversation or a text. Thus, vocabulary is an aspect that is very fundamental
for every body to be mastered in language learning. John Morgan and Mario
Rinvolutry (1986 : 3) say that :
The acquisition of vocabulary is not a linier but a branching process. Words
are not learnt mechanically as little packets of meaning but associatively. It is
not an impersonal but an intensely personal process, therefore, the associations
and vibrations that a word sets up depend on our own past and present fell
experience. It is not a solitary but a social process, we expand our apprehension
of word meaning by interchanging and sharing them others. It is not a purely
intellectual, effortfull process but an experiental hands on process too. An
over intellectual approach cause the language to be incorporated with in the
subject and the learners.

Unfortunately, most of students consider learning vocabulary as a
tedious job. Because of that, the teacher should look for an effective technique
make learning vocabulary easier, more pleasant and enjoyable.

B. A Brief Description of Singing
Singing is an activity that used sound tone with certainly lyrics. It is one
of the best ways in teaching vocabulary. Asking the students to sing an English
songs in getting their vocabulary. It will improve students skill in vocabulary.
Before giving the English songs, a teacher sould select familiar and easy
listening songs for the students. The selection the songs are important because
it will increase students motivation in learning vocabulary.
Geist (1970 : 25 - 28) defines that one of the best ways in teaching
vocabulary is using English songs. Asking students to listen English songs in
finding their vocabulary, it will improve students skill in vocabulary. Singing
plays an important role in learning vocabulary. In order the students can learn
and easy to memorize vocabulary, of course, teachers must find the best ways
in teaching vocabulary. In this situation, Dave Maier (2002 : 23), says that :
People can learn goodly in physic environment, emotion and positive social
namely good environment and arise spirit. It may be means that in learning
English, a teacher is allowed to do anything to raise up students enthusiasm
and education spirite include sing a song which can deep out all educated
participant in learning vocabulary. Hopefully, the words used in the lyrics
remain in the active store as long as students listen to the particular song and
since the aim of this work is to use students favourite songs, the period of time
when pupils listen the song for long time. Scott Thornbury (2002 : 17) described
the following challenges that a learner of a second language has to face the
following problem. He further says : Making the correct connections, when
understanding the second language, between the form and meanig the words.

2. Explanation
A. Teaching Vocabulary Through Singing
Using songs to teach vocabulary, several conditions for teaching stated
by Scott Thurnbury are met in lyrics, words usually appear in context, the
sound of new words is easily remembered along with the melody of the song
and by listening to the song, and the students are exposed to the new words
many times. As mentioned earlier, the roots of singing and speech seem to be
closely connected. Stansell (2005 : 125) says, Singing positively affects
language accent, memory, and grammar as well as mood, enjoyment and
motivation and that pairing words and rhythm properly helps to hold songs
together and to improve the ability of the mind to recall it. He also stated that
singing and language teaching help each other in the process of teaching
In the teaching learning vocabulary process, some words seem to be
easier to remember than the others. Scott Thurnbury (2002 : 27-28) made a list of
several factors that make some words more difficult than others do as follows :
a. Difficult pronunciation (some words in English are rather difficult to
pronounce especially the loan words derived from french, example :
mosque, league, unique, lieutenant, and etc).
b. Spelling (words that contain silent letters such as foreign, listen, often, etc).
c. Length and complexity (long words are more difficult).
d. Grammar (verb patterns).
e. Meaning (two words overlapping in meaning get confused, words with
multiple meanings).
f. Range, connocation and idiomatic (idiomatic expressions will generally be
more difficult than words whose meaning is transparent).
On the same page the expect Scott Thornbury gives the ways to the
English teacher to do some steps to overcome students problems in teaching
vocabulary through singing as follows :
a. Students need tasks and strategies to help themselves to organize their
mental lexicon by building networks of associations more better.
b. Teachers need to accept that the learning of new words.
c. Students need to wean themselves of a reliance on direct translation from
their mother tongue.
d. Songs need to be presented in their typical contexts, so that the students can
get a feel for the meaning, the collocations, and the syntactic environments.
e. Teaching should direct attention to the sound of new words, particularly
way they are stressed.
f. Students should aim to build a threshold vocabulary as quickly as possible.
g. Students need to be actively involved in the learning of words.
h. Students need multiple exposures to words and they need to retrieve words
from memory repeatedly.
i. Students need to make multiple decisions about words.
j. Memory of new words can be reinforced if they are used to express
personally relevant meaning.

B. Method of Teaching Vocabulary Through Singing
Method is one of the components which can not be separated from
others components like purpose, materials and so on. Method is a way of doing
something, it is a systematic arrangement of thing or idea. According to
Mackey (1996 : 20) : Method determines what and how a lesson is taught
(selection), the other in which it is taught (graduation), how the meaning and
from are conveyed (presentation) and what is done to make use of the language
unconscious (repetition).
In choosing and selecting method a teacher should be aware of the
purpose of materials and media, whether they are suitable with the teachers
skill or not in proceeding the teaching vocabulary process. As Howard (1996:
97) says : A good teacher uses a variety of teaching methods and does not
entirely upon any one of these, with the combination of method in process of
teaching learning. It is hoped that the goal of teaching learning will be
achieved effectively because no method which can be said more or less effective
if they stand alone. The using of good method depends on the goal that they
want to achieve, teacher skill, the ability of the student, the number of the
students, the time and technique that are needed to reach the goals. The use of
methods in teaching learning process will help teacher to increase her students
capabilities and their motivation in learning.
The suitable method for teaching vocabulary through singing is
suggestopedia. This method is also known as suggestive accelerative learning
and teaching. It was introduced by Goege Lazanov in 1978, a psychotherapist
and physician, who believes that relaxation techniques and concentration will
help the students tap their sub conscious resources and retain greater amounts
of vocabularies and structure that they ever thought possible. The general goal
of this method is to enable students to learn language in an athmosphere that is
liberated from the restrictive influences that students experiences in more
traditional classroom setting.
Freenum (1996 : 80) states in his book about the principle of
suggestopedia, they are :
a. The goal of this method is to accelerated the process by which students
learn to use a foreign language for everybody communication.
b. The teacher is the authority in the classroom. In order to the method to be
succesfull, the students must trust and respect him.
c. The characteristic of this teaching learning process are :
1) It is conducted in classroom in which students are as comfortable as
possible. Ideally, easy chairs, soft lighting and music are all available to
contribute to a relaxing environment.
2) Students select target language names and choose new occupation.
3) The texts students work from are hand outs containing lengthy songs in
target language.
4) The teacher present the singing during two or more times.
d. The language emphasized on vocabulary while the language skill is
emphasized on speaking communicatively.
e. As the course proceeds, the teacher uses the native language lesson less.
f. Evaluation usually is conducted on students normal in class performance
and not through format test.
g. When errors of from do occur, the teacher uses the form correctly latter on
during class.
This method seems to have a variety of features that are helpful in the
development of language profiency. The language is initially presented in
context of song that is culturally based. The athmosphere of the classroom are
with soft lights, baroque music, cheerful room decorations, comfortable seating
and dramatic technique used by the teacher in the presented of material. All of
these feature as are aimed at totally relaxing students, allowing them to open
minds to learning the language in unencum bared fashion.


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