Language plays a role in mediating people’s communication. Children acquire language through listening their surrounding environments, i.e. family, friends, or community and it applies to the deaf children, too. They need the language as a tool to communicate with others so as not to feel alienated from their surroundings. Nonetheless, the process of language acquisition in the deaf children do not proceed normally as children in general. As a result, deaf children are exposed with language barriers especially with respect to syntax. In support of the process of learning the syntax amid deaf children, visual learning media is deemed necessary to be used continuously by teachers through training and mentoring.
A group of Yogyakarta State University students initiated the idea of training and mentoring through sentence scramble games as learning media for the hearing impaired in Yogyakarta Special Region.
The team in charge utilized sentence scramble games in this training and mentoring, consisting of Yeni Norma Irawati and Sayidah Alawiyah from Special Education, Eggi Sutanto from Education Technology, Muhammad Muslim Machbub Sulthony from Elementary School Teacher Education, and Vindy Lailatul Mukaromah from Indonesian Literature.
As Yeni affirmed, sentence scramble game is a game of rearranging sentence structure that has scrambled and is designed according to the characteristics and needs of the deaf children in learning syntax. It is displayed in flash, completed with animation figures.
"The function is to facilitate children in rearranging sentences " Yeni said. "It is adapted to the characteristics of the the hearing impaired who tend to rely on their visual organ when learning."
Eggi Sutanto informed the training and mentoring were carried out in Karnnamanohara and Yapenas, two prominent schools organizing special education in Yogyakarta. He asserted the training and mentoring are designed for both teachers and students. For teachers, they are imposed to insert this game during their teaching practices of Indonesian language.
Meanwhile, students could benefit the training to learn arranging sentence structure using the scramble game. "This learning media, in addition to be adapted to the characteristics and needs of the hearing impaired, focuses on the visual organ”, Eggi added.
As Muhammad Muslim Machbub Sulthony explained, the training starts with socialization of the program to the deaf kids, and proceeded to pretest as the early stage to measure students' ability. "In the next stage, students are invited to recognize functional sentence pattern, comprising a subject, a predicate, an object, and an adverb” he suggested.
The methods in use are general lecturing and answer-question conducted orally or through gesture. Then some equipment in the sentence scramble game were introduced, followed with the description of how to use the game. This method is done repeatedly with different levels.
Next, the facilitator started oral conversation oral or gesture in pronouncing sentences with a structured pattern. "It ends with a simple short essay-making practice " he said. This activity received a grant in Community Service category of 2015 Student Creativity program. (NN)