The Concept of Comics Media
According to Scott McCloud in Understanding Comics, comics are juxtaposed pictorial and other images in deliberate sequence, intended to convey information and/or to produce an aesthetic response in the viewer. By this definition, single panel illustrations are not comics, but are instead cartoons.
In other hand, Nana Sudjana and Ahmad Rivai state that comic is a cartoon form that reveal the characters and act out a story in a sequence that is closely linked to the image and is designed to provide entertainment to the reader. Thus the reader will not feel bored while reading it. In addition, the comic has a concise story and draw attention, action and equipped with every story there is educational moral messages for the reader.
Meanwhile, the media is the tools, materials, a bridge that Convey information from sender to receive or events that establish conditions used by a teacher to facilitate the instruction to acquire knowledge, skills and attitudes, and engage the learners, therefore it can be communication each other.
According to Nana Sudjana and Ahmad Riva’i media that used in learning process as follows:
1) Graphic media (two-dimensional)
Media that combine facts and ideas in clear and strong through combination of disclosure of words and pictures. Types of graphic media consist of Chart, Posters, Cartoons and Comics.
2) Photographic Images
Photographic images, including the still picture consisting of a flat opaque picture (photographic images, drawings and paintings printed) and a transparent picture (film slides, film strips and transparencies)
3) Projection Media
Media projections have two types of Overhead Projector (OHP) and Slide and Filmstrip. Both types have their respective advantages OHP media that can be used to maintain face to face communication so easy to control student teachers during teaching, while media Slides and filmstrips be motivating learning, stimulating students’ interest in researching further learning materials.
4) Media Audio
Definition audio media for teaching, intended as materials containing messages in the form of auditory to stimulate the mind, feelings, concerns, and the willingness of students, so unsettled learning process.
5) Three-dimensional media
Three-dimensional media is the media that has length, width and height and can be viewed from different angles. Therefore the three-dimensional media has nearly the same shape with the original object.
6) Environment Media
The environment as a medium and the source of students’ learning can be optimized in the process of teaching materials and activities to enrich student learning in schools such as the survey, camping, educational field trips, field trips, service to society, human sources.
From the categories above, not all of them can be applied in the classroom. But in this research, researcher uses comic media in teaching writing narrative text. Comic is a tool that has the function to convey the message. As a media, the messages conveyed through comics are usually clear, coherent, and fun. For that, comic media has the potential to be a learning source. In this case, comic plays a role as a learning tool that serves to convey the message of learning. This is similar to the statement of Nana Sudjana and Ahmad Rivai who argued that the principal role of media in teaching comics is its ability to create interest in the students, so the comic will be able to be an effective teaching tool. Cartoons in comics usually contains the essence of the message should be delivered and set forth in a simple image and uses symbols and characters are easily recognized, is also understood quickly. In addition, the selection is based on the comic media a reason that the purpose of teaching the class not only transforms knowledge, but foster active student role.
Strength of Comics Media
According to Christophe Dony comics are fit with curriculum, “somewhat trickier because it first depends on the type of comics that are used, and second, on the teacher’s ability and will to adapt and rework the comics s/he uses so as to make them fit into the curriculum.” Comics can use in English classroom, especially in writing subject. Comics are also having strengths in education. The strengths of comics in education are many such as:
Comic spirit can attract students to learn and teach students to translate the story into the picture even as if the students are faced with a real context. In addition, the material in the picture form can explain the whole story or the material accompanied by illustrations to facilitate students to know the shape or concrete examples of what the purpose of such material so there is a lasting effect on students and can remember things longer.
2) Introduce a particular concept
Several years ago, Doraemon comics published issue of learning to count as well. Comics like this course very useful and helpful because of the feel of a fun learning with beloved characters.
3) Introduce the environment and natural surroundings
Comics can bring children into the past, to introduce them to Tyranosaurus at the time of dinosaurs, for example. Children can be introduced to various types of plants and animals through the comic. So the comic can also be used as a means of introducing God’s creation that they never knew before.
4) Teaching moral values
There are many comics bring the moral values that are important known by anyone. For example, friendship value, hard work, unity, perseverance and unyielding spirit. Consider the Japanese comics raised many of these values. Comic sports generally teach the value of hard work, perseverance, and unyielding spirit.
Weakness of Comic Media
Indeed, not all comic content to give a positive teaching. There are any weaknesses or adverse impacts of comics in learning include:
1) Not everyone can learn effectively with the visual style
Each person has individual learning styles. Therefore, comic cannot always be learning media. In other hand, the learning media must adjust to the learning styles of each student.
2) Comics can make people lazy
People want to see the interests’ picture only; they don’t understanding about whole materials. Even don’t want to read the whole story so that students’ absorption of the material is low.
3) There is a dirty language style and too fanciful
There are many violence actions or behavior that illogic so that messages or material submitted is not on target and perception errors.
4) There are love story in comics that cannot useful for students’ intellectual progress.
Many people’ say that the comic has been instrumental in creating juvenile delinquency. Others believe that the comic poison reading, imagination, and eye irritation.
5) Comics can dull the reader’s imagination.
Readers are invited to imagine what the character’s face or when the author describes about the space background. These comic aspects are translated into an image and make the reader immediately to enjoy it, without having thought through the depiction of the mind.
6) Can make addictive effects
It means that comics can make readers desire to immediately enjoy the series connection (mostly out of curiosity) or read of other comics only. The effect, in addition to spending a lot of money to rent or buy the issue after issue, curiosity can also encourage us to spend more time with comics.
Each learning media have the strength and weakness include comic too. But the teacher must use teaching method, so the comic will be able to be an effective teaching media. According to Muchlish in Galuh’s Thesis states that the aim of using comics as an instructional media as follows:
1) To translate verbal sources (writing) and clarify student understanding.
2) To facilitate student imagine (visualize) the events in images.
3) To help students express their ideas based image accompanying narrative.
4) Learning to be concrete and correct the wrong impressions of
The aim of using comic can be sure that comics can be used as a learning media. Through the guidance of the teacher, the comic can be a bridge to foster students’ interest in reading. From the students’ interest in reading will grow imagination, ideas and creation students in thinking so that teachers can help in expressing those ideas in writing.