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This paper is intended as the way how to teaching English conversation that interesting for student. This way can be done through using picture media. By using picture the students are easier to learn and enjoy directly practicing in conversation or speaking up.

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                      English Education Program, University of Ahmad Dahlan


This paper is intended as the way how to teaching English conversation that interesting for
student. This way can be done through using picture media. By using picture the students are
easier to learn and enjoy directly practicing in conversation or speaking up. This paper shows the
benefit of using picture in conversation, what the assessment are like, and what the procedure are
like. There are pre-teaching, process-teaching and post-teaching. The students can to measure
their ability. Moreover this paper shows the implementation using picture media for getting
output or result being better. It is caused by a creative idea of teacher that is using picture to
teach English conversation. Therefore this result can be seen that in fact the conversation can be
practiced by students fluently and interesting.

Key words: teaching conversation, communicative approach, picture.


        In Indonesia, language learning is very important for human’s social development. As a
language which is used by a half of people in the world, english holds the key as an international
language. Although in Indonesia english is a second language, which is not using for daily life,
but english is a tool for communication among people. Moreover english competence is very
needed and also important to improve the career. This means to help people as the Indonesian
citizen easier to get job, trade, social-culture and many others. Therefore teaching english is very
needed for students, in order that the students can to understand and use english to improve their
ability in the real life.

        Nowadays English is taught for every student’s grade, it is begin from elementary school,
junior high school, and senior high school. In spite of they do not can use English for
communicate well. It is caused by lack of the motivation, whether from the internal and external
factor. The internal factor is less of motivation on the students, so they are also less of curiosity
to learn much about English. Besides the external factor is not understood about how important
using English for the real life is, which makes society do not care about it. Both factors appear
the complicated problem, if they just keep silent and nothing effort to practice English.

       English as a formal subject is given for the students at school. Commonly teaching
english conversation is not far different with teaching english skill, like; grammar, vocabulary,
listening, speaking, and many others. Based on (Balitbang Depdiknas, 2002:42) said that the goal
of teaching and learning English are improving the four English skills. They are the mastery of
the receptive skills (reading and listening) and the mastery of the productive skills (speaking and
writing, within a specified word level and relevant grammatical structure and nations”.

       Before a teacher teach in the classroom, as a good teacher has to know about what the
materials needs are and how the condition needs is for teaching in the class. Thereby a teacher
can to control and manage the learning process in the classroom. For the material needs, the
writer has ever heard that as a good teacher needs a specific requirement before they teach the
students. Futhermore teaching english by using syllabus and lesson plan are the important and
alternative way in teaching. Because, its contain of pre-teaching, process-teaching, and post-
teaching which can help the learning process run condusively. Besides for the condition needs, a
teacher has to know about what the appropriate approach methode like is. In order that it can be
seen of the characteristic students in daily activities. Therefore a teacher can decide the
appropriate method and also using of learning media which can help teaching english
conversation in the classroom.

       English conversation has purpose to improve the students skill in speaking. Using
conversation is to communicate in the outside. Nowadays there are some problems to speak up
each others. When the students learn, sometimes they are burdened with intonation or rhythm
while they practice speaks up. This problem makes them less of self-confident where they have
an inappropriate intonation. It becomes difficult problem enough for them, moreover they wants
be like native speaker, and therefore they have to work hard to practice communication with
other people in daily life. The writer thinks that it becomes complicated problem in our English
learning. Thereby to solve this problem, the teachers use a media and method is as good way to
teach English conversation.
       Communicative approach is an appropriate method for teaching English conversation. It
can be seen that the students feel better and more confident to communicate, if they directly
speak. The teachers also feel satisfied, because they can measure the student’s ability, how far
the student’s fluency in communication. The appropriate media to teach conversation is through
picture. According to Raimes (1983:27) in Mahfud Effendi stated that the use of picture in the
classroom “provides a stimulating focus for students’ attention”. Commonly the picture can
interest the students to keep spirit in learning English, because the picture has much arts value
which makes them more interested. In picture teacher can make many creativities that
appropriate with the students needs in learning. They do not also feel bored in the classroom. In
other way, a teacher can also to keep follow lesson planning that they made. The writer has
concluded that learning English can run well conductively, because it has fulfilled the
requirement and needs in learning English process.


Teaching English Conversation

       English is as second language learning which is began with needs and interests of the
learners to know about language, culture, and ways of life other people. Conversation is also
provides sample of language patterns, vocabulary items, and expression for beginning of student
levels. Using conversation helps the students become more confident and proficient in an
atmosphere of thoughtfulness, besides respect for the student’s own value, opinion or idea.

       Conversation is speaking up about one subject in pairs or more. Teaching conversation is
notoriously difficult, it can be seen that there is contradiction in terms. In fact there are some
factors have a hunch that conversation is Sometimes the students feel unconfident to speak up, it
is caused they do not have a good skill, besides their mother tongue are still clearly visible. In
such a way, they shy to speak in public. There are some factors that make a student less of
bravery in conversation, such as:

   •   Less of self-confident on the students.

   •   Less of vocabulary to practice in daily activities.
   •   Less of motivation to learn about grammatically in English.

   •   Teaching method is not appropriate with the condition classroom.

   •   Teaching material is not appropriate with the students needs.

   •   Student’s ability to receive and understand English subject that various.

   •   Environment is not good to teach English.

       Occasionally, the dominant or smart students will make in one group, meanwhile the
students are poor reader or low thinker will often get difficulties in their group. It becomes a
complicated problems if it going on. It is important for a teacher to understand and to solve this
problem, in other that there is not social discrepancy among one student to the others. Besides
before the teachers teach in the class, they should take into consideration these elements, based
on Shavelson and Stern (1981:478).

    • Content is the subject matter to be taught.

    • Material is the thing that learners can observe.

    • Activities are the things that learners and teachers will be doing during a lesson.

    • Goal is the teachers’ general aim for this task or subject.

    • Students are their abilities, needs and interests are important.

    • Social community is the class as a whole and its sense of groupness.

       Getting a good conversation needs some equipment whether for the teachers or students,
such as: characteristic feature and teaching procedure. The characteristic features of conversation
include greater spontaneity and freedom, and greater equality among the students than other
discourse types. All these features are at odds with the nature of the classroom. Where language
is directed toward as a specific purpose, and where a teacher is traditionally charge of the
students. Teaching conversation has a procedure which is flexible. Conversation      focuses    on
developing student’s speaking and interaction skills while raising their awareness. Conversation
is based on the principles of a learned-centered curriculum and communicative language
learning. A teacher needs a special approach to teach. An approach to conversation development
is communicative approach. This method is considered be able to take charge of the students in
the classroom.

        Based on the Richards and Rodgers (1986:15) said that Edwards Anthony is someone
who expert in the linguistic subject on the 1963 had identified that there are three levels of
conceptual and organization which called approach, method, and technique. The arrangement is
hierarchical. The organizational key is that techniques carry out a method which is consistent
with an approach. “….An approach is a set of correlative assumptions dealing with the nature of
language teaching and learning. An approach is axiomatic. It describes the nature of the subject
matter to be taught…..”

        Communicative is a method which is used in teaching English is as foreign language with
the directly communication. This approach is teaching English which appears because the
language’s expert realized that there is a mistake on the last 1960s. This changing is caused by
teaching English with an old fashion that is a situational English teaching. Communicative is
taught with practice the activities based on the meaning situation. Moreover, this method is
recognized that they are not faced with oral situation when they are faced with outdoor class

        The communicative approach in language teaching starts from a theory of language as
communication. At the level of language theory, there are some of the characteristics of this
communicative view of language follow:

   •   Language is a system for the expression of meaning.

   •   The primary function of language is to allow interaction and communication.

   •   The structure of language reflects its functional and communicative uses.

   •   The primary units of language are not merely its grammatical and structural features, but
       categories of functional and communicative meaning as exemplified in discourse.

        Although communicative approach is one of the best ways in teaching English
conversation, it is not guarantee for the students to communicate to the target language well. But
rather ineffective if a teacher does not also support the students. In this case, giving motivation is
also important thing to encourage being better in conversation. Therefore learning activity will
be run effectively in the classroom.

Conversation Using Picture

       In the process of teaching and learning English, as a teacher should be creative to find out
the technique of teaching, so that the material of the subject that they teach can be easily
understood by the students. One of the techniques is using picture which is used as the learning
media. Based on Competence-Based Curriculum and KTSP that picture media have proved to be
effective and encourage the students in the learning process that purposed to improve their skills
of English subject, especially in conversation.

       Pictures can be employed for very creative use in communicative language teaching.
Using picture intended to be technique of teaching aid and constitute the material of which
language can be generated. The students can be divided into a group or in pairs. Based on
Brown (2001) stated that a group work helps to solve the problems of classes. A group or in pairs
can be asked to produce communicative sentence and giving expression from the picture.
Occasionally in this case is needed to guess and giving a concluding. Picture which is used has
to real thing form, for a reason that the students can imagine it explicitly. In such a way, their
imagination needs to be exerted. The activity of each group can work on different picture, and
attempt some kinds of a description which should involve question and answers related to the
matter on the picture.

Using Picture Procedure

       Commonly, a picture is more interesting than written. Sometimes cartoon is more unique
for teaching English conversation. Cartoon is delineations in painting form or caricature about
person, idea, or situation which is designed to influence society opinion. Cartoon is intended to
amuse reader. Thereby it is made as beautiful as possible. Before a teacher begin to learn in the
classroom. A teacher should prepare some procedures. It is intended for the keep conductively of
learning process. In teaching procedure, the writer will use three-step techniques which are
including pre-conversation, process-conversation, and post-conversation.

   •   Pre-Conversation

           • The teacher brings some picture and paste up on the whiteboard.

           • The students are divided into some groups, each of the group consist of two to
               five students.

   •   Process-Conversation

           •   Ask the students to analyze the picture for 5 minute.

           •   Ask them to discuss each group or in pairs.

           •   Ask the students to make one sentence or more using WH-word.

           •   Then, ask them in pairs to practice speak up or telling picture about.

           •   Sometimes, there is question from other groups, so they try to answer it.

   •   Post-conversation

           •   Assure all of students understand with the picture about. Sometimes it can be
               helped by the teacher.

           •   Ask one or pairs of each group to speak up the concluding or summarizing in
               front of the class.

           •   The last is the discussion will be lead by the teachers, giving some comments,
               giving a concluding, and also close the lesson.

       While the students practice the dialogue, advisable the model conversation is recorded on
the cassettes, therefore the students can hear clear of their nature interaction. The students may
use this model to repetition and compare their own conversation with other students. This is way
hoped that the students can do assessment about their own mistake. Thereby, they will get good
motivation and self- confident to speak up in the next day.

       Pragmatically, conversation lessons and exercises are intended to improve conversational
skills. For this reason, a teacher helpful to first focus on building skills by eliminating some of
the barriers that might be in the way of production. Implementing this approach can begin slowly
by providing students with short role plays using picture. A teacher can use some of pictures
with much creativity. These are examples of pictures that the writer used to practice the


Based on the three-steps technique can take the same point as the dimension, each of the oral
interaction tasks or conversation can make the task easier or more difficult, depending on the
characteristics of the task and the personal characteristics of the learners.

Conversation Assessment

       From some of pictures above, the last section of this procedure is assessment. Assessment
is intended to measure the speaking up ability every student. Many techniques would be
appropriate to assess the students, depending on their background and levels ability in English. In
this case, the writer thinks that to assess has to flexible. Flexibility is there must be consistent
evidence of the ability to turn-take in a conversation and to adapt to new topics or changes of
direction, Hughes Arthur (1989). There are some assessment which is used by the teacher in
conversation, these are:

   •   Self-confident, the students have to take upon to speak up about anything. Whether using
       incorrect structure or correct. Firstly they do not think about it.

   •    Fluency, it means that they are asked to conversation fluently.

   •   Accuracy, it means that how the students are using and word selection that considered
       being good sentences, thereby they can be a critical thinking and communicative skill.

   •   Complexity, it means that whether the students give a concluding and giving argument or
       not when their conversation or speak up.

       In addition to the value of the activity for communicative language learning, the teachers
encourage students to be receptive to other’s thoughts, idea, and opinion. Therefore they are
hoped to be more critical thinking people in everywhere they are.

The Benefits by Using Picture

       As a good teacher should know what the condition and needs of the students are like.
There are some reasons to teach conversation by using picture. The first and foremost, it is
remarkably interesting for students, because using picture can be created much creativity that
spends boredom. But even more important, using picture encourages speaking up in pairs, and it
demands to understand by giving a picture, then one of them describe it with directly practicing
or oral. The students have to work in pairs or together to get the main goal of this learning. They
can success completely unless they work well together in pairs. This cooperation made by design
interaction among all of students in the classroom.

       Pictures are media which is often used to clearer or explain an event. Sometimes news is
considered less, if there is no picture follows it. Using picture in teaching has some advantages.
Based on Latuheru (1988) in Mahfud Effendi stated that picture can translate abstract ideas into a
more realistic form, can be easily obtained, can be used in different academic levels, can save
teachers’ time and energy, and can attract students’ interest”. For instance, from the quantity
aspect, picture is about natural disaster. There is no clearer information, like; when the disaster
happen is, and what does the disaster happens like. For a reasons that picture shows only the
situation from the event. Therefore the picture cannot read detail, if there is encouraged with
texts or written. In other hand, the picture is also found two aspects; these are positive and
negative aspect. The negative aspects are;

    •   A picture will be considered less, if there is no detail information about time or

    •   The color is not interesting; the picture is only white and black. It is make students cannot
        to receive the material well.

    •   There is not clear information, and only show the picture. In such a way, it difficult to be

Positive aspects of using picture in teaching conversation are;

    •   Picture is more interesting

    •   Picture is also more encourage and clearer the text.

    •   Through picture, the reader can to know and imagine, although is not completely.

    •   The reader is also has different view about picture. Sometimes some people

        Considered ambiguity which is not appropriate with the real meaning of picture.

        Occasionally the students felt bored in the class, whether bored about the material or the
condition of classroom. This becomes a big problem, if it going concern without none effort to
solve it. Actually, being a teacher has to be creative with the condition of class about. Here, the
writer with high confident said that using picture is the best way to change the condition of class
that felt boring to the students.

       Conversation can be got in everywhere, but conversation will not be better if the students
just learn about the theory including among teacher and the students in the class. The
conversation will be better if the students try to practice often in class, whether with the other
students or the teacher. The teacher can measure how far the student to speak up ability and the
students also know about the less or excess of conversation. This way is hoped so there is
openness among the students and teachers that it helps the learning process in the class run well
and their conversation will be fluently if exercises in every meeting conversation class.

       Occasionally, lesson planning that the teacher made is not appropriate with the product or
output, and so does lesson conversation. A teacher gets a problem in teaching English. Being a
good teacher has to know and understand what the students wanted and needs to learn in the
class. Sometimes the students feel bored to learn. A creative teacher has to create an interesting
condition for them through the media. In fact, conversation using picture is one of good way to
create an interesting class, so they can easier to receive the material, and keep spirit to learn the
conversation in the class. Finally the views about conversation that is extremely difficult will
lose edging away.


Cahyono, Bambang Yudi. 2009. Techniques in Teaching EFL Writing. Malang: State
       University of Malang Press.

Pearson Education North Asia Limited. 1994. Speak Up. Hong Kong: Longman Asia ELT.

Richard. Jack C. and Rodgers. Theodore S. 2001. Approaches and Method In language
       Teaching. United Kingdom: Cambridge University Press.

Mukalel. Joseph C. 1998. Approaches to English Language Teaching. New Delhi: Discovery
       Publishing House.

CN. Candlin and H.G. Widowson. 1989. Discourse. New York Toranco: Oxford University
diunduh pada sabtu, 15 januari 2011 at 10.45 pm.

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