SUGGESTOPEDIA AS A METHOD FOR TEACHING SPEAKING
FOR YOUNG LEARNERS IN A SECOND LANGUAGE
The emphasis at this level its on the code as code. Becoming literate,
according to this perspective, is simply a matter of acquiring those skills
that allow a written message to be decoded into speech in order to
ascertain its meaning and those skills that allow a spoken message to be
encoded in writing, according to the convention of letter formation,
spelling and punctuation. At the performative level it is tacitly assumed
that written messages differ from spoken message only n the medium
employed for communication.
SHERLY PRAMAWITA SHAULA
SEKOLAH TINGGI KEGURUAN DAN ILMU PENDIDIKAN MUHAMMADIYAH
SUGGESTOPEDIA AS A METHOD FOR TEACHING SPEAKING FOR
YOUNG LEARNERS IN A SECOND LANGUAGE CLASSROOM
SHERLY PRAMAWITA SHAULA
PROGRAM STUDI PENDIDIKAN BAHASA INGGRIS
JURUSAN PENDIDIKAN BAHASA DAN SENI
SEKOLAH TINGGI KEGURUAN DAN ILMU PENDIDIKAN
MUHAMMADIYAH KOTABUMI LAMPUNG
Assalamu’alaikum Wr. Wb.
Alhamdulillah hirobbil’alamin, all praising for Allah SWT given amenity to us, so
that we can finish duty compilation of handing out entitling “ Suggestopedia"
“.We also render thanks to dosen of counsellor of lesson that is Mr. Johan
Supangkat, what ever assist us in solving of this handing out.
Hopefully result of compilation of this handing out can good for us specially for
other party reading result of this compilation and also at society of generally.
Finally we apologize if there are a lot of insuffiency, because that's our ability
boundary in compiling this handing out and we also very expect constructive
suggestion and criticism for perfection of handing out which we present this.
Wassalamu’alaikum Wr. Wb.
Kotabumi, Juni 2013
TABLE OF CONTENT
Table of Content...................................................................................... ii
CHAPTER I INTRODUCTION............................................................. 1
1.1. Background .......................................................................... 1
CHAPTER II........................................................................................... 4
2.1. Suggestopedia....................................................................... 4
2.2. Key Features Of Suggestopedia........................................... 6
2.3. Suggestopedia In The Classroom......................................... 8
2.4. Advantages And Disadvantages Of Suggestopedia............. 10
2.5.Suggestion For English Teacher............................................ 13
CHAPTER III.......................................................................................... 16
3. 1. Conclusion........................................................................... 16
1.1. Background of the Problem
Teaching speaking for young language learners (YLLs) is an interesting and
challenging duty for teachers for some considerations. In one hand, YLLs are
individuals of very early age who are interested in many new things such as a
foreign language, English. Young language learners (YLLs) are defined here as
being school pupils up to around 13 years old (Hasselgreen, 2005). In this level,
young learners seem to have the same proficiency in speaking that is novice level.
The characteristic of novice level is the students’ ability to communicate
minimally with learned material and oral production consists of isolated words
and perhaps a few high-frequency phrases essentially no functional
communication ability (Brown, 2001).
Related to this, Wells (1991:52-53) cited in Hammound (1997) divided the
students’ literacy into four levels. They are performative, functional, informative
and epistemic level. YLLs are included into performative level. It emphasizes the
ability to master speaking skill:
The emphasis at this level its on the code as code. Becoming
literate, according to this perspective, is simply a matter of
acquiring those skills that allow a written message to be
decoded into speech in order to ascertain its meaning and those
skills that allow a spoken message to be encoded in writing,
according to the convention of letter formation, spelling and
punctuation. At the performative level it is tacitly assumed that
written messages differ from spoken message only n the
medium employed for communication.
On the other hand, teaching YLLs is regarded as the most difficult thing to do
in a second language classroom by some teachers. Since YLLs have little or no
prior knowledge of the target language. We can find many distructions done by
the students in every short time. Making noise, playing with others, walking
around, etc are phenomena encountered in every day teaching and learning
process by the teacher. So, the teacher is the central determiner to accomplish
their goal. Every eye and ear are focused on the teacher.
Moreover, English has been introduced as a second language for years for
YLLs, but the result is not satisfying. It can be seen when they are asked to make
small conversations in the first class of senior high school. They tend to keep
silent and do speaking activities after the teacher gives some models of dialogues.
There are some reasons why they have difficulties to do speaking activities. One
of which is the use of uninteresting and unapplicable method in the teaching
learning process by the teacher. Ramelan (1991) says ‘The failure of English
instruction can be explained by many factors including little knowledge of
principles of foreign langauge taching and the ways of teaching’.
The teacher should utilize a teaching method that is attracting to teach
speaking for the students which includes materials, comfortable environment,
self-confidence teachers, etc.
Georgi Lozanov is a formulator of opinion about suggestopedia, said that a
method developed and specific set of learning recommendations derived from
suggestology, concerned with the systematic study of the nonretional and/or
nonconscious influences. Suggestopedia tries to harness these influences and
redirect them so as to optimize learning. The most conspicuous characteristics of
suggestopedia are the decoration, furniture, and arrangement of the classroom, the
use of music, and the authoritative behavior of the teacher. The claims for
suggestopedic learning are dramatic. “there is no sector of public life where
suggestology would not be useful” (Lazanov 1978:2). Memorization in learning
by the suggestopedic method seems to be accelerated 25 times over that in
learning by conventional methods. (Lazanov 1978:27).
Suggestopedia is a teaching method, which focuses on how to deal with the
relationship between mental potential and learning efficacy and it is very
appropriate to use in teaching speaking for young language learners (Xue, 2005).
This method was introduced by a Bulgarian psychologist and educator, George
Lazanov in 1975. Maleki (2005) believed that we are capable of learning much
more than we think, provided we use our brain power and inner capacities. In
addition, DePorter (2008) assumed that human brain could process great
quantities of material if given the right condition for learning in a state of
relaxation and claimed that most students use only 5 to 10 percent of their mental
capacity. Lazanov created suggestopedia for learning that capitalized on relaxed
states of mind for maximum retention material. By using this kind of methof,
YLLs can get the memorization 25 times faster rather than conventional methods
Suggestopedia is an effective comprehensible input based method with a
combination of desuggestion and suggestion to achieve super learning. The most
important objective of Suggestopedia is to motivate more of students’ mental
potential to learn and which obtained by suggestion. Desuggestion means
unloading the memory banks, or reserves, of unwanted or blocking memories.
Suggestion then means loading the memory banks with desired and facilitating
Lazanov (1978) cited in Lica (2008) argued that learners have difficulties in
acquiring English as the second language because of the fear of the students to
make mistakes. When the learners are in this condition, their heart and blood
pressure raise. He believes that there is a mental block in the learners’ brain
(affective filter). This filter blocks the input, so the learners have difficulties to
acquire language caused by their fear. The combination of desuggestion
and suggestion is to lower the affective filter and motivate students’ mental
potential to learn, aiming to accelerate the process by which they learn to
understand and use the target language for communication to achieve super
learning. It is the final goal of suggestopedia
Richard and Rogers (1998) stated that there were some theoretical
components through which desuggestion and suggestion operate:
(1) Authority: students remember best and are influenced when information
comes from an authority or teachers
2) Infantilisation: learners may regain self-confidence in a relation of teacher-
student like that of parent to child
(3) Double-Planedness: learning does not only come from direct instruction but
also comes from the environment in which instruction takes places
(4) Intonation, rhythm, and concert pseudo-passiveness: varying tone and
rhythm of presentation frees the instruction from boredom, and presenting
linguistic material with music gets the benefit of the effect produced on body.
2.2. Key Features of Suggestopedia:
1. Comfortable environment
In this kind of teaching method, the classroom is very different from
common classrooms. In the classroom, the chairs are arranged semicircle
and faced the black or white board in order to make the students pay more
attention and get more relaxed. The light in the classroom is dim in order
to make the students’ mind more relaxed (Xue, 2005).
2. The use of music
One of the most uniqueness of this method is the use of Baroque music
during the learning process. Ostrander and Schroeder cited in Harmer
(1998) said that Baroque music, with its 60 beats per minute and its
specific rhythm, created the kind of relaxed states of mind for maximum
retention of material. It is believed that Baroque music creates a level of
relaxed concentration that facilitates the intake and retention of huge
quantities of materials. Baroque music helps the suggestopedic student to
reach a certain state of relaxation, in which the receptivity is increased
(Radle, 2008). The increase in learning potential is put down to the
increase of alpha brain and decrease of blood preasure and heart rate. The
music used also depends on the expected skill of the students: grammar,
imagination exercises, making future plans, discussion, etc
3. Peripheral Learning
The students acquire English not only from direct instruction but also from
indirect instruction. It is encouraged through the presence in the learning
environment of posters and decoration featuring the target language and
various grammatical information. They are changed everyday. By doing
this, the students can learn many things undirectly in the classroom or
outside classroom. For example, YLLs can make simple oral production
by using the posters or grammatical information on the wall.
4. Free Errors
In the teaching learning process of speaking, YLLs who make mistakes are
tolerated. The emphasis is on the content not the structure. Grammar and
vocabularies are presented and given treatment from the teachers, but not
5. Homework is limited
YLLs reread materials given in the classroom once before they go to sleep
at night and once in the morning before they get up.
6. Music, drama and art are integrated in the learning process
They are integrated as often as possible
2. 3. Suggestopedia in the Classroom
Teaching speaking for YLLs using suggestopedia, the teacher should take
three steps (Lazanov, 1982) cited in Xue (2005):
Presentation is the basis of conducting Suggestopedia in class successfully.
The main aim in this stage is to help students relaxed and move into a
positive frame of mind, with the feeling that the learning is going to be
easy and funny. Desuggestion and suggestion happen at this stage at the
This involves the active presentation of the material to be learnt. The
original form of Suggestopedia presented by Lozanov consisted of the use
of extended dialogues, often several pages in length, accompanied by
vocabulary lists and observations on grammatical points. Typically these
dialogues will be read aloud to YLLs to the accompaniment of music.
The students are now guided to relax and listen to some Baroque music.
The best choice of music according to Lozanov, with the text being
studied very quietly in the background. During both types of reading, the
learners will sit in comfortable seats, armchairs rather than classroom
chairs, in a comfortable environment. After the readings of these long
dialogues to the accompaniment of music, the teacher will then make use
of the dialogues for more conventional language work. The music brings
the students into the optimum mental state for the effortless acquisition of
the material. The students, then, make and practice dialogue after they
memorize the content of the materials.
The use of a range of role-plays, games, puzzles, etc. to review and
consolidate the learning. Here is an example of teaching speaking using
1. The teacher greets the students with either English or their native
language and tells them that they will have a new and exciting
experience in language learning.
2. The teacher asks the students to close their eyes and tell them that they
will go to an English speaking country. For example, they are in an
airport. “Now, you are in an airport of America, listen to the people
around you. They are talking with immigration officials”, said the
teacher. The teacher asks them to open their eyes and bring their
awareness to the class. She says,”Welcome to English!”.
3. Then, the teacher tells them that they will have new names and
identities by showing a poster showing English names. The students
will pronounce the names by repeating the teacher. The teacher helps
them by doing pantomime to help them understand about their new
identities such as doctor, nurse, police, etc.
4. The teacher greets each student using his name and ask some questions
in English about his occupation. Through her action, the students
understand the meaning and they reply ‘yes’ and ‘no’.
5. The teacher teaches them a short dialogue about greeting in English.
After that, the students will practice. The teacher tells the students that
they are having a party and they have to introduce one another by their
new names and identities.
6. Next, the teacher announces that the class is over and they will have
another exciting activity tomorrow and they do not have homework.
2. 5. Advantages and Disadvantages of Suggestopedia
As a particular method, suggestopedia offers some benefit for its use in the
second language classroom for YLLs. There are some benefits in utilizing
1. A comprehesible input based on dessugestion and suggestion principle
By using this teaching method, YLLs can lower their affective filter.
Suggestopedia classes, in addition, are held in ordinary rooms with
comfortable chairs, a practice that may also help them relaxed. Teacher
can do numerous other things to lower the affective filter. According to
Kharsen (1989) cited in Xue (2005) activities that allow students to get
better acquainted with each other may help lower anxieties and make
students to adopt new names for the duration of the language course may
have a similar effect.
2. Authority concept
Students remember best and are most influenced by information coming
from an authoritative source, teachers.
3. Double-planedness theory
It refers to the learning from two aspects. They are the conscious aspect
and the subconscious one. YLLs can acquire the aim of teaching
instruction from both direct instruction and environment in which the
teaching takes place.
4. Peripheral learning
Suggestopedia encourages the students to apply language more
independently, take more personal responsibility for their own learning
and get more confidence. Peripheral information can also help encourage
students to be more experimental, and look to sources other than the
teacher for language input. For example, the students can make some
sentences using the grammatical structure placed on the classroom’s wall,
describe a particular place in an English speaking country by looking at the
poster on the wall, etc. When the students are successful in doing such
self-activities, they will be more confident.
It is not fair to analyze only from the benefit aspects. Suggestopedia also
has limitation since there is no single teaching method that is chategorized
as the best based on some consideration such as: the curriculum, students
motivation, financial limitation, number of students, etc.
The main disadvantages of suggestopedia are as follow:
1. Environment limitation
Most schools in developing countries have large classes. Each class
consists of 30 to 40 students. One of the problems faced in utilizing this
method is the number of students in the class. There should be 12 students
in the class (Adamson, 1997).
2. The use of hypnosis
Some people say that suggestopedia uses a hypnosis, so it has bad deep
effects for human beings. Lazanov strongly denied about it.
3. Infantilization learning
Suggestopedia class is conditioned be child-like situation. There are some
students who do not like to be treated like this as they think that thay are
2. 6. Suggestion for English Teacher
Teaching speaking for young language learners (YLLs) using suggestopedia is
not easy especially in the countries in which the level of education is still low. It
needs a professional and experienced teacher. Very few working teachers are in a
position where they can use this system (Adamson, 1997). The teachers should
take more training in order to utilize suggestopedia in the classroom. Richards and
Rogers (1998) cited in Xue (2005) stated that in conducting Suggestopedia for
YLLs, there are some suggestions:
(1) Teachers show absolute confidence in the method.
(2) Teachers display fastidious conduct in manners and dress.
(3) Teaches organize properly and strictly observe the initial stages of the
teaching process. This includes choice and play of music, as well as
(4) Teachers maintain a solemn attitude toward the session.
(5) Teachers give tests and respond tactfully to poor papers (if any).
(6) Stress global rather than analytical attitudes towards material.
(7) Teachers maintain a modest enthusiasm
Material consist of direct support materials, primarily text and tape, and
indirect support materials, including classroom fixtures and music. Although not
language materials, the learning environment plays such a central role in
Suggestopedia that the important elements of the environment need to be briefly
enumerated. The environment comprises the appearance of the classroom, the
furniture, and the music.
Procedure of suggestopedia as with other methods we have examined, thre
are variants both historical and individual in the actual conduct of suggestopedia
classes. Bancroft (1972) notes that the four hour language class has three distinct
part, there are :
1. The first part, we might call an oral review section. Previously learned
material is used as the basic for discussion by the teacher and twelve
students in the class. All participants sit in a circle in their specially
designed chairs, and the discussion proceeds like a seminar. This session
may involve what are called micro-studies and macro-studies. In micro-
studies specific attention is given to grammar, vocabulary, and precise
questions and answers. In a macro-studies, emphasis is on role playing and
wider-ranging, innovative language constractiona.
2. The second part of the class new material is presented and discussed. This
consists of looking over a new dialogue and its native language translation
and discussing any issues of grammar, vocabulary, or content that the
teacher feels important or that students are curious about. Bancroft notes
that this section is typically conducted in the target language, although
student questions or comments will be in whatever language the student
feels he or she can handle. Students are led to view the experience of
dealing with the new material as interesting and undemanding of any
special effort or anxiety. The teacher attitude and authority are considered
critical to preparing students for success in the learning to come. The
pattern of learning and use is noted, so that students will know what is
3. The third part is the one by which suggestopedia is best known. Since this
constitutes the heart of the method, we will quote Lazanov as to how this
At the beginning of the session, all conversation stops for a minute or two,and
the teacher listens to the music coming from a tape-recorder. The teacher waits
and listens to several passages in order to enter into the mood of the music and the
begins to read or recite the new text, teacher’s voice modulated in harmony with
the musical phrases. The students follow the text in their text-books where each
lesson is translated into the mother tongue. Between the first and second part of
the concert. In some cases, even longer pauses can be given to permit the students
to stir a little. Before the beginning of the second part of the concert, there are
again several minutes of silence and some phrases of the music are heard again
before the teacher begins to read the text. Now the students close their text-books
and listen to the teacher’s reading. At the end, the students silently leave the room.
They are not told to do any homework on the lesson they have just had except for
reading it cursorily once before going to bed and again before getting up in the
morning. (Lazanov 1978:272)
Teaching speaking for young learners using suggestopedia is very interesting
but challenging to do. It can be seen from some considerations. In one side it has
some benefits, but on the other side it also has some weaknesses. In addition, the
key factors of effective teaching are not the approaches and methods in language
teaching themselves but the teacher’s deliberate selection of different approaches
and methods and the devoted practice of putting theories into real teaching
activities in a corresponding social-cultural context. It is a fact that no approach or
method is perfect. However, there is no end for us to seek the perfection of the
approaches and methods in language teaching. The language teaching method
known as Suggestopedia provides some valuable insights into the power of
cognition and creates techniques that make students feel comfortable, relaxed and
suggestible to the material being learned.
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