Abstract ethnography study in which the researcher joined the

Abstract

The researcher document and analyse the impacts which are given by diary writing activity of Bangkalan beat box community. The study proceeds as an ethnography study in which the researcher joined the community from October till December as well as doing interview with the informant, Wendy. The findings reveal that the informant gets loads of benefits from diary writing activity in the beat box community which effects both her beat box skill and language learning. Unconsciously increasing English vocabularies, having self-esteem in speaking and writing in English, and being able to learn multimodal construction of meaning are the positive marked impacts of diary writing activity which are gotten by Wendy during joining beat box community.

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Keywords: Diary writing; language learning; beat box

 

1.    Introduction

The globalization has brought information easily to be accessed around the world in which also brings new euphoria in popular things. Beat box has developed a global phenomenon loved by millions worldwide especially in Indonesia. The numerous beat box community spread out in every corner of Indonesia especially in the big city. John Park & Andrew Huynh (2017) as the experts beat boxer define beat box as musical expression of the body through the improvement of sounds and the creating of music by only using the mouth, throat, and nose.

Creating unique activity as the main activity of the community is important in order to attract people to join the community. Those communities are competing to offer beneficial activities both from the member and society. As one of the beat box community in Indonesia, Bangkalan beat box community has unique daily activity for the members. It has literacy practices for learning those beat box techniques in which also beneficial for language learning. It obligates each member of the community to write a diary about everything related to hip hop as well as telling story about how struggle they learnt beat box sound effects. The diary has to be written in English because most of the sources in learning beat box used English.

To keep writing diary or journal is advantageous to explore self-potential like the ability in exploring the subject to write about and the capability to communicate in the written form which helps the readers understand the ideas. The best way to learn to write is by writing in which it is like letter to yourself (Leki, 2010). Constantly, writing a diary will help to preserve the precious idea, insight, and memories. Moreover, the one of prominent role of writing is giving tremendous contributions in education because of the eternal products of writing or the literacy artefacts that can be accessed now or in the future. There are numerous writing activities whether it is in formal form or in informal form.

Besides, the previous studies concerning on the strength of diary writing in improving language learning especially writing skill had been conducted by Indonesian researchers. One of them is written Ramadhani & Lestiono (2015) entitled ‘The Use of Diary Writing to Improve Eight Grade Students’ Writing Skill at SMPN 3 Malang’. The result of their study shows that diary writing is an effective way to make students more proficient in English writing especially in recount text.

Most of the previous studies emphasize the use of diary writing in the formal situation as the one of techniques to improve students’ ability. Nonetheless, in this research is focussed on drawing clear explanation of diary writing’s effects as special activity in the beat box community of Bangkalan because of Seeing the increasing number of beat box community and the positive impacts given by diary writing practices in learning language.

 

2.    Theoretical Framework

 

2.1     Importance of Writing

Warschauer (2010) believes writing is vital skill due to three reasons. First, writing well is a vigorous skill for academic or work-related success. Second, writing can be an effective tool for the development of academic language proficiency as learners more readily explore advanced lexical or syntactic expression in their written work. Third, writing across the curriculum can be irreplaceable for mastering varied subject material, as written expression lets learners to raise their awareness of knowledge gaps, abstract problem-specific knowledge into schemas that can be applied to other relevant cases, and elaborate mental depictions of knowledge that can be more easily retrieved, while at the same time allowing teachers to better understand the students’ state of knowledge and thinking process and thus adjust instruction as necessary. In short, writing is the primary basis upon which working, learning, and intellect will be judged in college, in the workplace, and in the community.

In the same view, Leki (2010) stated that the best way to learn to write is by writing in which it is like letter to yourself. It means keeping writing diary or journal is beneficial to explore self-potential like the capability in exploring the subject to write about and the proficiency to communicate in the written form which assists the readers to catch the ideas easily. Writing a diary will constantly help to preserve the precious idea, insight, and memories.

2.2          Diary Writing

Diary writing is an opportunity to travel around the development of selfhood in the world, and to record the process of constructing personal narrative within scholarship (Lejeune, 2009). It means that the chance of having extra writing activity outside the school which is given by diary or journal writing to the students in exploring their own life experiences is worth working. The diary or journal writing will give extensive writing practice for each student.

Penaflorida in Richard and Renandya, 2002:349 states that because students had been keeping the journal regularly, it eventually became a habit with them. They were given a maximum of 10 minutes to write briefly on anything (e.g., family gatherings, family problems, ideas on love and courtship, travel, current events, special occasions, and other relevant issues). They wrote down their thoughts in a few sentences at the beginning, but their writing gradually improved and developed so much at the end of it, they could already express their thoughts in longer paragraphs.

Someone is able to write everything that they think it is important that need to be everlasting memory. Without being judge by someone else makes the diary writing does not stop the fluency in expressing their idea by writing. Besides, as the expanding writing activity, it is also as third space of someone to show their own identity, activity, interest, or hatred feelings.

2.3     Beat Box

 

In oxford dictionary beat box is explained as imitating the sounds of drum machine with the voice. According to John Park & Andrew Huynh (2017) as the experts beat boxer defines beat box as musical expression of the body through the innovation of sounds and the crafting of music by only using the mouth, throat, and nose. Contrary to the definition given by dictionary, beat boxing remains to be rapidly growing art from sole replication of drum into full performance. It means creating musical by using human organ instruments specifically mouth, throat and nose. Beat box is not solely how to make voices, and it also has specific alphabet rules which are marked by using curly brackets.

Because of globalisation and enhanced technology, the interest in learning beat box is steadily increasing in Indonesia specifically in the young generation. It shows from the emergence of beat box communities in several countries of Indonesia. They have kinds of activities as beat box groups such as performing in the CFD (Car Free Day) every week, entertaining in the orphanage, having diary writing activity as the daily activity, and so on.

 

3.    Methodology

The researcher followed a beat box community in Bangkalan consisting of 25 members, both male and female, between 16 and 21 years old, coming from various schools and universities in Bangkalan. Writing what they have learnt inside and outside the community related to beat box using English is the one of unique activities in Bangkalan beat box community. For instance, the members write about what skill or technique what they have learnt, learning reading and writing beat box alphabets as well as telling story about their daily live. Our subject of study, under the pseudonym of Wendy, is a 17-year-old Madurese girl, the first girl who joins this community. She only joins one community without taking additional course especially English course. She has joint this community for 1 year and actively writes her diary using English. It is also filled by her beat box music wrote by herself using beat box alphabet (symbol using curly bracket).

The study proceeds as an ethnography study, designed as portrait of participant in order to capture all the elements that made diary writing activity in the community of beat box positively influence the language learning. An ethnography study is a written description of particular culture, customs, beliefs, and behaviour based on the information collected through fieldwork (Harris & Johnson, 2000). In addition, According to Zaharlick (1992), gaining a detailed understanding of how informants see their world and how they understand the problems of everyday life that they confront is the purpose of ethnography study.

The researcher collected and analysed the data through having and writing field notes while doing observation by joining the community, reading and coding the diary content, and having interview with Wendy. These data were collected between October and December 2017.

4.    Findings and Discussion

The impacts which are given by implementation of diary writing activity in beat box community are the discussion in this research. Unconsciously increasing English vocabularies, having self-esteem in speaking and writing in English, and being able to learn multimodal construction of meaning are the positive marked impacts of diary writing activity which are gotten by Wendy during joining beat box community. It is also believed that journal writing can be used to energize what we do and how we do it (Boud, 2001). As a medium for learning, it can be used in formal courses, our professional practice, or any aspect of informal learning.

4.1 Multimodal construction of meaning

By joining this community and having diary writing activity, Wendy writes every sound that she has learnt and practices it later. She is aware of multimodal resources in which meaning is distributed among the multiple semiotic modes that converge in a text and change those modes into sounds of music produced using her mouth, throat, and nose. She is aware that every sound has its meaning. She uses different kind of colours if she wants to write beat box lyrics which make her easy to distinguish which one that should be practiced.

Moreover, Wendy also draws on a wider range of linguistic specifically when she is trying to practice the given music text using beat box alphabet. Wendy is aware of types of written sound symbols based on SBN (Standard Beat box Notion) which are marked by using curly brackets. For instance, if it is written using uppercase alphabet {B}, it means she has to make heavy or force voice, while if it is written using lowercase alphabet {t} it means she should produce the sound effortless. She is also aware that every sound she heard have different kind of part or model which should be written using separated bracket. Thus, writing every rules, sounds given by the seniors or video, and making her own written sounds make her able to write the sounds and also able to change the beat box text into sounds.

4.2 Enriching English Vocabulary

            During the interview, Wendy said the most significant effect felt is her vocabulary mastery is increasing rapidly because of diary writing activity. She is usually watching video about beat box which is mostly using English. For the first time, she turns on the subtitle and writes the difficult words in the diary. As time passes, she watches the English video tutorial about certain effect sounds in bet box without using subtitle and she mostly understands. She also said about her regret of her diary writing activity lateness, it will be better if she start it sooner. She said diary writing helps her so much in memorising and mastering the technique because she can she what has been learnt in diary and practice it on other days.

            Moreover, most of the name of sounds that Wendy learns are using English name such as zipper, water, whistle scratch, sonic boom, dry kick roll, balloon squeak, classic snare, clown humming lip oscillation, inward robot voice, and etc. Although she does not know the meaning of the word at first, after hearing the sound she will understand the meaning then writes it in her diary. Sometimes, she also writes how to pronounce of certain name of the sounds or difficult words that she found in the beat box video which she faces difficulty in saying it but using her own style. For example, tongue clop (tang klop), balloon squeak (beluun sekuik), and etc.

4.3 increasing self-esteem while speaking and writing in English

The chain of activities in the beat box community Bangkalan, also influence Wendy’s self-esteem while speaking and writing English in her school. When she was in the first grade of senior high school, she often had remedial test due to her lack of ability in English and made her got score lower than passing grade. After joining this community and having diary writing activity, she is able to speak and write her idea using English. She said she never take remedial test since the second semester of first grade, she even got the highest score during her test.

Moreover, the various exposures of English unconsciously increase her ability as well as her confidence in showing her ability in English. When she is told to write a story for school assignment, she is able to write more than one pages because she is accustomed to write diary every day. Due to her numerous writings emphasizing on how to pronounce difficult words, she is capable to speak fluently using proper pronunciation.

5.    Conclusion

This study highlights the need to abandon those models of foreign language learning and teaching which merely consider semiotic as the main of the communication. In fact, paying attention to the multimodal resources such as symbols and sounds is important in order to get deeper understanding.

Besides, it is also highlighted the need of having third space for language learning improvement rather just giving dictate activity and imprisoned students with structured assessments. It shows that the implementation of diary writing is not only applicable in school content. It can valuably implicate in the community for learning specific purposes but still get language improvement as the bonus. Having extend and boarder English vocabulary which will in turn the increase of self-esteem while speaking and writing in English are the marked impacts of diary writing activity.