IMPROVING THE VIII C STUDENTS’ VOCABULARY ACHIEVEMENT BY USING CROSSWORD PUZZLES AT SMP NEGERI 2 LUMAJANG
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English as a global language is used in countries throughout the world, including Indonesia. In Indonesia, English is considered as the first foreign language that must be learnt by students beginning from Elementary School, up to University level. Considering that English is a global language, the students have to master the four language skills of English, those are: listening, speaking, reading, writing and the three language components, namely: vocabulary, pronunciation and grammar. Thus, to support those four skills, we need vocabulary as one of the components which should be acquired and mastered first among the other language components. Based on the preliminary study that was held on 16th August 2015, the VIII C students of SMPN 2 Lumajang faced some difficulties in mastering English, especially on vocabulary. This was proven by their English scores which showed that only 9 students (28%) of 32 students of class VIII C got 75 and the mean score was 68.5. Further, based on the observation, only a few students were enthusiastic in the teaching learning process. The classroom action research with cycle model was applied in this research because this research was intended to improve class VIII C students’ vocabulary achievement. This research was done collaboratively with the English teacher of class VIII of SMPN 2 Lumajang. It was conducted in class VIII C of SMPN 2 Lumajang that consisted of 32 students. The observation of the students’ active participation and the vocabulary test were the methods that were used in collecting the data. The data were then analyzed quantitatively. The action was implemented in two cycles in order to achieve the goal of this classroom action research. The first cycle was done in three meetings. The results of the classroom observation showed that 58.62% in meeting I and 65.62% in meeting II and the students were less actively involved in the teaching learning process. Based on both results of first and second meeting of the first cycle, the average result was 62.12%. It showed that there was an improvement of the students’ participation from meeting I to meeting II but did not achieve the target percentage of this research, that was, 75%. Fortunately, the result of the vocabulary test in Cycle 1 achieved the target percentage of this research that 75% of the students got score 75 or more in the vocabulary test. The percentage of the students who got score 75 was 96.87%. In order to know the consistency result, Cycle 2 was conducted. The process and product evaluations improved in the second cycle. The observation of the students’ active participation improved from 75% in meeting I to 90.62% in meeting II. Based on both results of the first and second meetings in the second cycle, the average result was 82.81%. So, the results of both observations in meeting 1 and meeting 2 had achieved the goal in this cycle. For the product evaluation, the percentage of the students who got 75 in the vocabulary test was 100%. Based on those results, it could be concluded that the action in Cycle 2 was successfully done because the results of the students’ active participation and the students’ vocabulary achievement achieved the objective of the research. Finally, it could be concluded that the use of crossword puzzles could improve the students’ vocabulary achievement and the students’ active participation in teaching learning process of vocabulary at SMPN 2 Lumajang.