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By : Marsha Diva Nursanndy

(Student of SMAN 1 Nubatukan)

CAKRAWALANTT.COM - English is a language that we need nowadays. Every aspect in this world has use English commonly. This language has been dominating in entire of the world. But there’s a problem here that we face. We are struggling in English and still have so many difficulties to master this language. Especially here in SMAN 1 Nubatukan. Only some teachers and students in our school who can speak English. Though, we’ve been learning English since we were 12 years old (on 7th grade). This is showing that we still have difficulties to speak in this language.


Based on my experience, I’ve seen my friends who always get best score in English tests but they can’t speak at all. Though, speaking is one of the productive skills that we should master. Then why? I found out school measure students ability in English is not appropriate. What we have done so far is we just measure through National Examination. If the students can answer correctly by crossing a b c d or e and he or she gets 100, then that’s the result. We may sum up that the student is smart or good at English. But can we guarantee that the student is be able to speak or write? Actually, getting good grades is not enough and we should measure what should be measured.


Learning English as a foreign language is not always easy for all students. Some of them always say “why should we learn English? It’s boring, and tiring”. Though, language is tool of communication. Then, it’s easy to learn because we can practice it anytime and anywhere. That’s why I try to write my essay under the title : The difficulties faced by students of SMAN 1 NUBATUKAN in speaking English. The reason why I choose this topic because i want to tell the truth about learning new language based on the journey of my  study. It took much energy and effort to get this level (Last year I took English test from British council and I found out my level is B1. On this year, I haven’t take that test yet). It’s quite difficult at the beginning, I couldn’t even understand what people said. Even though, the conversation was basic things. And after I get this level, it changed me a lot. I had positive mindset about language. English is just language as well as Indonesian Language and it’s easy to learn. For that reason, I try to talk more detail about reasons why students of SMAN 1 Nubatukan always see English as a difficult subject.


There are some reasons why we can not speak English after learning it for long time. First reason is wrong mindset. This factor is the most influential. When we want start to learn English, we always set the unrealistic goal. For instance, get fluent in 4 months. But the problem we don’t enjoy the learning process at all, feel stressed and bored, can’t be consistent anymore, and finally we end up with nothing. This is very common and happened to everyone especially students here. According to James Clear (Writer of best seller book : Atomic Habits), he said “If you want better results, then forget about setting goals. Focus on your system instead.” So, thing that we have to do is make our own system and get comfortable with it so that we can enjoy our learning process. Furthermore, we always afraid to make mistakes. Based on my observation, students want to speak but  they are afraid of being criticized. They are afraid to making mistakes. It’s normal because we are not English native speaker. We are learners so make mistakes is a part of our study journey so we can fix our mistakes and won’t repeat the same mistake again. Carol S Dweck, an American Psychologist and writer of book : Mindset has said “Mistakes are so interesting. Here’s a wonderful mistake. Let’s see what we can learn from it.”


Second reason is improper method. Students usually learn through text book, remember grammatical rules but never practice it in daily life. They only know the theory. Some students have good marks in English exam but when it comes to conversational session, they do not understand and they can’t speak at all. Based on my study journey, The proper method that I find really works is consider ourselves as baby on this language. Remember when we were babies, we didn’t know how to speak Indonesian language at all. We only know some words that we heard before and we tried to imitate what people around us talking about. We only know how to listen and speak and also didn’t afraid to make mistakes. We used to make mistakes a lot without felt guilty at all. Then over time, we can understand what people said, make proper sentences and can even speak fluently without knowing the grammar rules and how to read or write. And when we entered school, we learned ‘abjad’, Indonesian grammar, and others literature. This shows that our method in school is totally opposite. Basically, we are not immersing ourselves on this language which makes it’s difficult to having conversation in English. If we want to speak English, then the first step to do is try to listen and repeat or speak in this language as much as possible as we did when we learned our mother tongue.


Third reason is unsupportive environment. To practice and get used to in this language, we have to stay in the environment which supporting us and probably use this language as well. But in here, most of students still judge other students who want to practice or always talking in English. I experienced this problem when I was in 10th grade and it was so difficult to find partner to talk. Then this causes a lot of students don’t want to speak English because they afraid to get hate and judge. Remember! The key to master the language are speak and listen more. Then, how can we get fluent in this language meanwhile the environment isn’t supportive at all?


Well, the important thing here is practice makes perfect. The more we practice, the better our chances of becoming fluent in this language. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes. Make sure to make a hundred of mistakes so that we can fix and remember for long term use. Other than that, try changing the learning method that students will surely enjoy the process. For example, listen to music, watch movies or series, reading stories, gaming, or looking for chat partner as I did. If students don’t have friends to talk English in their real life, there is another option. It’s social media platform such as Facebook, Wakie, Ome TV, Omegle, Ablo, Speaky and Discord. These are applications and website which I always use until now. Remember that learning a language is a marathon, not a sprint. So don’t be rush. Enjoy the process, keep practicing and try to always be consistent. I hope this essay can open students’ minds in overcoming the problems they face. (red)

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