Improving students’ speaking competence through communicative activities (a classroom action research in the tenth grade at SMA Negeri 7 Surakarta in 2008/2009 academic year)

Oleh :
Catharina Anggraheni - - Sekolah Pascasarjana

The objective of the research is to improve the students’ speaking competence, and to what extent the teaching technique of using communicative activities in teaching English speaking can make progress to learning process and the students’ competence, and describe and / or evaluate the response of the students towards the use of communicative activities. The research was carried out in the tenth grade at SMA Negeri 7 Surakarta from September 2008 to February 2009. The subject of the research is the students of X-1 of SMA Negeri 7 Surakarta. The data were obtained from interview, observation, and document analysis. To analyze the quantitative data, the writer used the non-independent t-test. It is used to analyze the result of teaching and learning process and to know the difference before and after the cycle. To analyze the qualitative data, the writer used Constant Comparative Method as suggested by Strauss and Glasser in Lincoln and Guba (1985: 339) comprises comparing of incidents applicable to each category, integrating categories and their properties , delimiting the theory , and writing the theory. The research methodology included the setting and time of the research, the method of the research, the procedure of the research, the technique of collecting data, and the technique of analyzing data. The writer divided the action into three cycles and carried out in four steps namely planning the action, implementing the action, observing and monitoring the action, evaluating and reflecting the result of implementation. The findings reveal that the communicative activities can improve the students’ speaking competence effectively. It could be seen from the increase of motivation, interaction and cooperation and they are fun and comfortable. Besides, their main obstacles as like shyness, nervousness, being afraid to make mistakes, and even feeling inferior significantly decreased. Furthermore, the students had better progress from cycle to cycle based on the data collected. For instance, the mean of pre-test was 64.47, while the mean of cycle one was 70.24, cycle two was 78.60, and cycle 3 was 83.08. The research findings of the study imply that the implementation of communicative activities is effective to improve the students’ speaking competence. Therefore, it is recommended that (1) the English teachers should learn how to enhance their capability in teaching English before conducting the teaching and learning process; (2) the English teachers should be creative to use various teaching techniques in teaching English speaking; (3) the English teachers should create the most appropriate approach to make the students not to be shy, nervous, afraid to make mistakes, and inferior to communicate each other; and (4) the English teachers create an interesting atmosphere to make the students easier and braver to express their mind in English orally.