ERG SES C 14, Language and Education
It is an undeniable fact that communicative aims are at the center of the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR) approach to language learning/teaching. That is because learners learn languages through communication better and drama activities tend to foster the development of communicative competencies because it provides learners with a plot, or at least a situation.
In the field of language teaching, there are four basic skills of reading, writing, listening, and speaking. Among these skills, reading and listening are receptive skills which are important for enhancement of comprehension while writing and speaking are the productive skills that aim to improve expressing the ideas (Emiroglu & Pinar, 2013). Writing can be defined as the process of transferring feelings, ideas, facts, and actions; and it is a crucial skill occupying an important place in the curriculum of K-12.
Writing is one of the important skills in individuals’ expressing their opinions and their effective communication. When we take writing into consideration, it is an activity combining cognitive, affective, social, and psychomotor processes. In the writing process, the students need to realize various cognitive processes coordinately in order to express their feelings and ideas efficiently and to transfer comprehensible messages to the readers (Flowers and Hayes, 1981). Along with this, individual’s attitude, interest and desire play an important role in the writing process. Attitude towards writing is an affective feature that related with how individual feels himself/herself while writing. Student developing a positive attitude towards writing can enjoy writing and are more likely to become successful in this skill.
Numerous techniques should be employed to enable the students to develop positive attitudes towards writing. Such techniques are student-centered, creative and enjoying (Kirmizi, 2008). Creative drama is one of these methods. We can utilize the creative drama method in order to progress the students’ writing skills and their attitudes towards writing (Aykac, 2011).
Looking at the high school curriculum improved in 2015, it can be stated that there is a special focus on improving writing skill in the course of Turkish Language and Literature. When we have a close look at the 9th-grade Turkish Language and Literature course, there are writing activities in each unit and they consist of planned writing processes. However, it might be more important to enable the students to combine different senses by breaking the limitation of only cognitive dimension. In other words, it is assumed that the combination of drama and creative writing can help the students make use of cognitive, affective, physical, and even humanist dimensions while interacting. Drama activities creates an environment in which the students can express themselves freely, participate in the interaction both physically and cognitively, learn while enjoying, and show their creativity. Therefore, creative writing juxtaposed with drama is assumed to have a positive effect on students’ attitudes towards writing in native language.
This study aimed to investigate the effect of creative writing activities based on drama on 9th class students’ writing attitudes in their native language, Turkish. Since research indicates that creative writing based on drama is not employed as effectively as possible, the findings of this study might have a positive contribution to the literature. The research method of this study was the mixed methods research design so both qualitative and quantitative data were utilized. Research questions are: 1. Does drama have an effect on students’ attitudes towards writing? 2. What are the opinions of students about creative writing activities based on drama technique? The target population of the study was the 9th class students taking Turkish Language and Literature course at high schools in Turkey. The sample of the study consisted of 65 9th class students at two high schools in Istanbul, Turkey. Pretest-posttest control group design was used to measure the difference between treatment and control group after administrating the creative writing activities based on drama technique for 15 weeks and 4 hours a week. As an instrument, Writing Attitude Scale was used developed by Akaydin and Kurnaz. As for the the qualitative part of the study, semi-structured interviews developed by the the researchers were utilized to have a more in-debth understanding through the opinions of students about creative writing activities based on drama technique.
The quantitative data was analyzed through t-test analysis and it was found that there was a significant difference between the groups on behalf of the treatment group (M= 3.73, SD=.62). Moreover, the qualitative data was put into the content analysis and it was deduced that the students’ overall perceptions about creative writing based on drama was very positive and it has a motivating effect on their attitudes towards writing in Turkish. The results indicated that writing based on drama activities has positive effect on students’ attitudes towards writing. Moreover, the students have constructive opinions about creative writing activities based on drama technique and they expressed that writing based on drama activities should be used more effectively in writing classes. In addition to that, there is a need for curriculum innovation through including more writing based on drama activities into the 9th class Turkish curriculum. On the other hand, the quality of these activities should be improved to increase the effectiveness of these activities and create more positive attitude towards writing.
Aykac, M. (2011). Turkce ogretiminde cocuk edebiyati metinleriyle kurgulanan yaratici drama etkinliklerinin anlatma becerilerine etkisi. Yayimlanmamis Doktora Tezi. Ankara Universitesi. Emiroğlu, S. ve Pınar, N., F. (2013). Dinleme Becerisinin Diğer Beceri Alanları ile İlişkisi. Turkish Studies, 8(4), 769-782. Flowers, L. & Hayes, J. R. (1981). A cognitive process theory of writing, College Composition and Communication, 32 (4), 928-950. Kirmizi, F. S. (2008). Turkce dersinde yaratici drama yontemine dayali yaratici yazma calismalarinin yazmaya yonelik tutuma etkisi. Yaratici Drama Dergisi, 4 (7), 51-68.
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