COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES AND SENIOR SECONDARY SCHOOL STUDENTS’ CREATIVITY IN ENGLISH SENTENCE CONSTRUCTION
1.1 The Study’s Background
A teacher is regarded as a link between students and the curriculum. Teachers are in charge of organizing all educational activities within the school system. It is their responsibility to interpret curriculum content and break it down into teachable units in order to achieve the stated goals and objectives.
To achieve the goals, the teachers’ mode of operation and their relationship with the students are critical. These are determined by the teachers’ perception and acceptance of the teaching job, the methods and materials used, and their communicative strategies in the classroom during the instructional process.
The effective teaching/learning of English in the classroom is solely dependent on the teacher’s communication skills. Their potential and creativity are developed once they communicate appropriate instructions to the students. These skills of communicating appropriate instructions to students help instill in students the fundamentals of the English language, which they can then use to construct readable sentences in English.
In essence, students do not have a better chance of understanding and applying the fundamentals of English sentence construction until they are taught. On this basis, Ekah (2015, p.49) stated that: learners are drilled to memorize language rules as a way of developing sufficient ability to translate one language into another. Eka emphasized the importance of recitation and translation because students have no minds of their own and thus always speak the mind of their teacher.
As a result, communication is the driving force in any healthy relationship (Hasan, 2010). During the teaching/learning process, communication promotes effective classroom interaction. In this case, English language teachers must be well-versed in the complexities of the language in order to effectively communicate instructions to students.
The reason for this is that if English teachers do not understand the complexities of the language, they will struggle to guide students in forming sentences in the language. As a result, the quality and caliber of teachers, as well as the teaching of sentence formation, determine the outcome.
Communication strategies are important in the teaching and learning of sentence formation because they improve mutual understanding between teachers and students during the teaching process. These strategies ensure that students understand the instructions communicated to them by their teachers and thus participate fully in the classroom learning process.
In other words, English teachers must carefully and effectively apply communication strategies such as rehearsal strategy, questioning strategy, oral communication strategy, and morphological creative strategy to develop students’ creative ingenuity toward sentence formation. In doing so, English language teachers should remember what Rand, Phyllis, and Edgerton (2001, p.38) said: “Everyone is unique.”
One person’s creative ability is not the same as another’s. Finding one’s creative talents and then polishing and improving them for global relevance is important and rewarding. We can hone and improve our creativity by learning to think and write more effectively.”
Rehearsal, as one of the strategies for developing creativity in students, focuses on continuous sentence formation practice. The students’ skills and knowledge are harnessed through rehearsal, allowing them to function well, double their productivity, and perform well in sentence formation. Tracy (2010, p.79,101) observed: “Your ability to learn and remember can last your entire life if you keep your brain alive, alert, and functioning at its best.”
When you develop and hone your ability to focus and concentrate, you will be able to double your productivity, performance, and output.” Rehearsal necessitates a great deal of concentration, determination, and sample. This necessitates the teachers’ constant attention in order to provide the necessary guidance to the students during rehearsal.
This is made possible by good relationships between teachers and students, which results in effective interaction between them. This is consistent with Shulman’s interaction theory (2002), which states that interaction theory is a model of helping process in which workers’ skills help to create a positive working relationship. In turn, this relationship serves as a conduit for workers to influence practice outcomes.
Clarify one’s professional function and role in the helping process as a prerequisite for effective practice. This is because the professional will do his or her own part while also involving the workers in their own parts.
Furthermore, the questioning strategy improves the teaching of sentence formation. This entails using appropriate interrogative statements in the classroom when teaching sentence formation. During the learning process, both teachers and students use this strategy. Teachers use the questioning strategy to assess their students’ understanding of the subject matter, while students use it to clarify issues in the lesson that they do not understand.
One of the characteristics of a skilled teacher, according to Etim (2016, p.165), is the effective use of the questioning technique. Throughout a lesson, questions are asked and answered. Students are given the opportunity to think creatively and respond positively through this strategy, allowing them to be actively involved in the teaching/learning process. As a result, the questioning strategy is one of the most effective strategies for developing students’ creativity in sentence formation in the English language.
Another strategy that can help students develop creativity is oral communication. It is a solid strategy for conveying instructions to students. This strategy involves using verbal cues to communicate instructions to students. Oral communication is an essential component of the classroom teaching and learning process. In essence, all explanations and illustrations for the lessons taught in class are done orally.
It involves both teachers and students (interlocutors) in an interaction that promotes learning. Messages are thus transmitted through sound symbols in oral communication. This allows students to make significant contributions to what they are learning.
According to Karunaratne (2009: p.171), “oral communication allows students to contribute to what they learn and how they learn it.” As a result, effective use of oral communication strategies encourages effective participation in classroom teaching/learning activities, which develops students’ creativity in sentence construction.
Morphological strategy is also a communication strategy that encourages students’ creativity in sentence construction. It is about word formation and the process of word formation. Morphology, according to Udofot (2010), is “an aspect of language that deals with the internal structure of words and the rules governing the formation of words in a specific language.”
This strategy assists students in forming new words while adhering to the existing rules of word formation in order to communicate ideas to others through the use of words. The words formed will be added to the students’ word bank for use at any time in their lives.
With this, students will never be short of ideas to communicate through sentences, but rather their creativity will be channeled toward sentence formation. As a result, as students learn how to create new words with the help of their teachers, their creativity is directed toward sentence construction.
Looking at the topic of this study, it is clear that the students’ inability to perform well in English language exams, both internal and external, is due to their inability to communicate their ideas, knowledge, or opinions in simple but correct sentences.
This is due to a gap in teachers’ ability to apply communication strategies in the classroom teaching/learning process. As a result, the researcher is attempting to fill gaps and encourage teachers and students to use communication strategies in order to achieve optimal results in their English language performances.
1.2 Problem Identification
A critical examination of our Itu Local Government Area school systems and the activities of English Language teachers reveals the important roles of communication strategies in the development of students’ creativity in sentence construction in English. It has been observed that students have difficulty constructing sentences in English.
The reason for this is not far-fetched given that students lack adequate knowledge of the rudiment of English language in which sentences are formed, as well as a sufficient word bank to guide them in sentence formation. As a result, these deficiencies pose a significant challenge to students’ and teachers’ performance in the teaching and learning process of sentence construction in the English language. This allows the researcher to conduct a study on communication strategies and students’ creativity in sentence construction in English.
1.3 The Study’s Purpose
The primary goal of this research is to investigate the impact of communication strategies on students’ creativity in sentence construction.
This study in particular tends to:
Determine the effect of rehearsal strategy on students’ sentence formation creativity.
Investigate the impact of questioning strategy on students’ sentence formation creativity.
Determine the impact of oral communication strategy on students’ sentence construction creativity.
Determine the impact of morphological strategy on students’ sentence formation creativity.
1.4 Importance of the Research
The study’s findings are significant in that the rehearsal strategy would assist English language teachers in teaching with ease and involving students in the learning activity, as well as students in mastering the lesson taught. The questioning strategy would be beneficial to both teachers and students in that it would help teachers identify areas where students did not understand the lesson and thus revisit such areas, and it would help students think creatively, thus broadening their scope of experiences. It would also allow them to read more widely.
The oral communication strategy would be beneficial to both students and teachers in that it would assist teachers in communicating his instructions to students in a meaningful manner and would assist students in understanding and responding positively to the instructions communicated to them by the teachers.
Morphological creativity strategy would be extremely beneficial to students because it would assist them in understanding the structure and components of words, creating and storing new words in their word bank to make it easier for them to construct sentences in English
1.5 Research Questions
What effect does the rehearsal strategy have on students’ sentence formation creativity?
What effect does questioning strategy have on students’ creativity in sentence formation?
How does students’ creativity in sentence construction differ depending on their oral communication strategy?
How does morphological creative strategy influence students’ sentence formation creativity?
The researcher developed the following hypotheses to carry out this study:
There is no discernible effect of rehearsal strategy on students’ creativity in sentence formation in English.
There is no discernible effect of questioning strategy on students’ creativity in sentence formation in English.
The oral communication strategy has no significant influence on students’ creativity in sentence formation in English.
Morphological strategy has no significant influence on students’ creativity in sentence formation in English.
1.7 The Study’s Fundamental Assumptions
A valid and reliable research instrument can be used to measure the study variables, which include rehearsal strategy, questioning strategy, oral communication strategy, and morphological strategy.
Teachers and students in schools have different communication strategies and learning styles when it comes to sentence formation in English.
1.8 The Study’s Limitations
This research is being conducted in all secondary schools in Akwa Ibom State’s Itu Local Government Area. The researcher restricts his study to selected public secondary schools in Akwa Ibom State’s Itu Local Government Area. The 2017/2018 school year is being considered. The research focuses on teachers’ communication strategies and students’ creativity in sentence formation in English.
1.9 Terminology Definition
The researcher defines the terms in this study operationally, as follows:
Communication Strategy: Communication is the process of expressing ideas, feelings, or providing information to others. Strategy, on the other hand, refers to a plan that is intended to achieve a specific goal. Communication strategies are blueprints that show how information can be exchanged between teachers and students.
Students’ Creativity: This refers to students’ abilities and skills in the classroom during the teaching/learning process.
Sentence Construction: This is the process of arranging words in grammatical order in order to convey meaningful ideas to the audience.
Rehearsal Strategy: This is the plan devised to ensure that students practice the lesson taught.
Morphological Strategy: This is the plan devised to encourage students to form new words in accordance with the existing rules of word formation in the targeted language (English) in order to communicate their ideas, opinions, and messages in sentences.
Oral Communication Strategy: This is a plan for communicating instructions to students in the classroom using sounds produced with the mouth rather than writing.
Questioning Strategy: This is the process of asking questions that stimulate students’ creative thinking and further readings in order to provide a satisfactory answer to the teacher’s question.
REVIEW OF RELATED WORKS
2.0 Getting Started
This chapter examines related literature under the following headings: theoretical framework, which includes connectionism learning theory and social learning theory; conceptual/empirical framework; rehearsal strategy and students’ creativity in sentence construction in English language; questioning strategy and students’ creativity in sentence construction in English language; oral communication strategy and students’ creativity in sentence construction in English language
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