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67. The Grammatical Cohesion Of Reading Text Of Year Seven Junior High School Textbook “Smart Steps” Published By Ganeca Exact


1.1 Background of the Study

People live in what the so called social life, which always need companion. In this case, in order to facilitate their efforts to provide themselves with the necessities of life, human beings have to cooperate with one another which can only be carried out in a community. In doing so, they need a means of communication which is called language. With language they can interact with other people to establish and maintain relations between them and to express their ideas or view points on things in the world. Halliday in Feez and Joyce (1998:5) mentions “language arises in the life of the individual through an ongoing exchange of meanings with significant others”.

Languages are found among counties and English is one of the foreign languages that play an important role for the international relationship between English and non-English speaking countries. Harmer (2002:1) argues, English as a lingua franca. He adds “it is a language widely adopted for communication between two speakers whose native language is different from each other’s and where one or both speakers are using it as a second language”.

English itself has been taught in Indonesia as a first foreign language since the proclamation of Indonesia on 17th of August 1945 (Ramelan 1992:1). The teaching of English is aimed to develop listening, speaking, reading and writing skills. Today, reading appears to be an essential skill for people. It is intended to get them always keep up with the development of sciences and technologies. Besides, it is indeed, useful for students for the sake of literacy mastery. Wong (1974:186) argues the importance of reading in his article ‘The Educational Role and Cultural Orientation of English Reading Materials’ by writing: “if young is to grow up viable in literacy society, they should be taught how to read. Reading is the infrastructure on which rest much of the knowledge made commonly available today”.

Students of foreign language should be prepared to read to have them deeply internalise the English they learn (Paul,2003:83). Furthermore, reading text can be used to improve and build up reading skill. Having a good reading skill benefits student to be able to speak well. Scott and Itreberg (1990:49) propose that the printed words become the main source of expanding and strengthening the language. Reading is also the language skill, which is easiest to keep up.

It is true that reading is essential for learners of foreign language as well as other subject of learning. Mikulecky (1986:1) makes the point that “reading may be the only way for us to use English if we live in non-English speaking country”. He adds why reading is more important when you are learning a new language in
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