Language is the first element which used by two or more
than two people to communicate each other around the world. Communication is a
process of sending and receiving messages or to share feelings, ideas,
information, knowledges, etc by human using of any languages. There are two
types of communication to exchange information. They are Verbal Communication
and Non-verbal Communication. People
use verbal communication to interact with others, but, it should also be known that non-verbal
communication also helps to build up communication and make a connection. Leathers
(1992) stated that non-verbal actions are more effective and precise than
verbalization. Moreover, non-verbal cues make the communication process easy
where sometimes verbal communication also cannot help to express language. Abercrombie
(1968:55) states what is generally taken for granted: “We speak with our vocal
organs, but we converse with our entire bodies”. It means that facial
expressions and gestures contribute to the overall meaning of a statement we
Non-verbal communication is usually used for
children/students with special needed. Sometimes they use facial expression or
gesture to send their messages. As we know, not only special learners but also
every child can be benefited by the use of teacher’s non-verbal communication.
This action helps to reach any kind of language and makes them understand the
As an English Education student, our goals is to teach
language to the student and tell them how to use language to communicate with
other people effectively. Teachers should pay attention to non verbal
communication in the class. Non verbal language will help teachers to
communicate with their students in the target language and to control the
student’s knowledge and discipline in the class. It helps teachers to manage
student’s behavior too. This way will help both the teachers and students to
exchange information and knowledges. In fact, nonverbal communication is an important part of our daily
communication, and it is an indispensable part of language teaching.
Definition of Communication
Communication, in general, is the process of
sending and receiving messages that enable humans to share knowledge,
attitudes, and emotions. Aristotle defined communication as the use of
available resources to find a way to encourage others to express their ideas and opinions. The aim of
communication is to exchange information between
one and others. According to Istifci &
Demiray (2011) Communication is “the imparting or interchange of thoughts, opinions, or information by
speech, writing, or signs”. However, Negi (2009) said that communication is an
on-going process of sending and receiving messages that let people share their
ideas, feelings, attitudes, emotions in their daily life. As we know,
communication is separated into two ways, verbal communication and non verbal
Non Verbal Communication
communication is known as a process of delivering and receiving information by
human without words. It is usually communication using gestures, facial expressions, body movements, postures, pitch of
voice, and many more.There
have been various definitions of this term depending on the researcher’s theoretical
background and level of focus. Andersen (1999) stated that Non-verbal
communication includes all communication other than language (as cited in,
Gregersen, n.d., p.52). Non verbal
communication is universal in that many gestures and body movements are
understood and used by a wide number of people, even if those people belong to
different cultures. A
good example of these is Smile.
Roger E. Axtell (1998, p118) calls it the “Ultimate Gesture”, because it is
used everywhere and almost in every situation.
explained that not all the non-verbal acts can be considered as communication. In some
student stretches up his or her arm up on their head due to his or her
tiredness; in that case,
it will not be considered as any sort of communication. On the other side, if
the same act is presented in a classroom, it will symbolize that the student
wants to raise questions or give answer (p.53). Therefore, it can be said that
not all non verbal behaviors lead to communication (Gregersen, n.d., p.53).
Communication: Eye Contact
The aspect of non verbal
communication is the use of the eyes to convey messages or
For both the teacher and the learner, the eyes are a powerful tool around the
teaching and learning environment. Eye contact produces a powerful,
subconscious sense of connection that extends even to drawn or photographed
eyes. Because it is connected with human’s
earliest survival patterns. Teachers
can use numerous strategies to manage their classroom and offer students the
opportunity to build their knowledge and also to prevent misbehavior in
classroom. Students are more likely to be emotionally and intellectually
invested in the classes in which they have positive relationships with their
teachers. Therefore, teachers who build positive relationships by eye contact
with their students may enjoy the following benefits.
Wainwright (1999) person makes eye contact when:
Shows attention and interest,
Engages and controls interactions,
Dominates, threatens, and influences others;
Gives feedback on speaking
Poses an attitude.
Sometimes, too much eye contact
is instinctively felt to be rude, hostile and condescending (Chen, 2005). It
may also be perceived as a deliberate intent to dominate, intimidate, belittle,
or make “the other” feel at a disadvantage. Many learners are likely to find this
uncomfortable and consequently avert their own eyes and lose concentration. We reduce eye contact
when we are talking about something shameful or embarrassing, when we are sad
or depressed, and when we are accessing internal thoughts or emotions. But, it
is not always correct in language learning. Longer eye contact is associated
with trust or maybe
good feelings (Huang, 2006). Teacher increases eye contact when he wants to
admire or confirm students in the classroom.
Communication: Facial Expression
Face is the
complex part of the human body. Through the face expression, people communicate
perfectly in silent. Using facial expression, much of the informations are
carried out by the mouth and the eyebrows.
Haller and Rambaud (1980)
expressions into five basic categories. They are:
Primary expressions which used by all humans. These can be either
positive expressions, like tenderness, frankness, and curiosity; negative
expressions like anger, terror, and disgust; or mixed expressions such as submission,
impatience, and astonishment.
Facial expression which only produced by adults. They are subdivided into
negative expressions such as admiration, relief, and bravery.
Force the meaning of what the person’s expressed in
Examples of these are familiarity, humility, reflections.
Relating different expressions and giving a distinct
characteristic like helplessness, remembrance, satiety, etc.
It used in very particular situations.
function in very particular situations. It makes
them difficult to interpret.
Examples are boredom.
Facial expression of the teachers is a way to express
teacher’s feeling. From the facial expression, the student learns how the
teacher feels (emotionally) when teaching, whether the teacher is teaching with
feelings of joy, happiness, feelings of anger, etc. The expression of the
teacher’s face has a certain meaning for students who then responded by the
students. Based on my experience as a student, if the teacher shows ‘sumringah’
face or smile face, it means that she or he as a happy teacher. The student
will know that the teacher has a good mood to teach them. So, their enthusiasm
in learning maybe will increase.
Paul Ekman and Friesen (http:// www.paulekman.com) said that human facial
expression, expressing 6 major human emotions which used to show mood of the
person when they feel fear, disgust, anger, happy, sad, and surprise. Based on
Paul Ekman and Friesen study, facial expression of the teacher who shows
‘sumringah’ face is can be expression of happy emotions. The angry expression
and emotional expression of teachers, which makes student thinks that the
teacher is cruel can be said to be an emotional expression of anger according
to the two experts. While the emotional expression of teachers which maybe has
a lot of problem in their life and badmood teachers can not be explained with
the expert’s findings. So the expression of emotion of disgust, fear, shock and
sadness can not be determined from the findings of this study.
A teacher’s facial expression without a smile is
unpopular with the student because it creates a variety of unpleasant feelings
such as fear, anger, insecure, under pressure, and discomfort. In this
situation, many of student’s feedback to the teacher is silent. This silent
response means students do not want to ask, be passive in learning activities.
Another action of silence is not to ask the teacher even if the student does
not understand the material which explained by the teacher. Students choose to
ask their friends who are considered more intelligent or learn with private
Otherwise, the smiling facial expressions used by the
teacher cause feel happy (enjoy) or boost the spirit to follow the lesson
because it shows the feeling of happy teachers in doing learning activities.
This pleasure encourages students to want to ask the teacher, can concentrate
on the lessons and enthusiasm in learning activities.
For me, teacher’s eye contact has a lot of meaning. The
meaning of eye contact from the teacher are:
Teachers who teach with bright eyes and look to students
show pleasure with students;
Teachers who do not have eye contact means not paying
attention to students
Teacher who continually sees the student means watching
Teachers are more attentive to higher performing students
or favoritism teachers.
Related to Wainright’s opinion, the teacher’s goal of
making eye contact with the students are:
The teacher makes interaction
The teacher shows attention and interest to the student
The teacher is not interested or not interested in the
Teachers threaten students
The teacher poses an attitude (angry, dismissive).
ü Teachers use
various types of non verbal communication behavior in the classroom, but the
students give the main attention to the facial expression and eye contact.
expression of teachers is a way of emotional expression of teachers, while eye
contact plays a role in interpersonal relationships between teachers and
students. Smiling facial expressions are encouraged by students that teachers
teach with pleasure or enjoy and this makes students happy. This situation
makes student enthusiasm in learning activities. The facial expression without
smile shows that the teacher is teaching with displeasure, or there is a
problem or being angry. Teachers who teach with these feelings create various
negative feelings in students such as fear, depression or discomfort, laziness,
feeling angry, or indifferent to the lesson. Eye contact with the teacher to
students makes students feel cared for and heard so that students want to
communicate with teachers. Teachers who are not in contact with students are
interpreted by the students that the teacher will not listen, no matter, or any
other negative feelings.
ü The mean of
non verbal communication behavior of teacher for student is preparing emotion
condition for student to do learning activity. Thus, the smiling facial
expressions and eye contact of the teacher provide a positive emotional state
for students to follow the learning and atmosphere that empowers students to