Seeing happiness through narratives as written by school-aged children

Fitria Rahma Dewi, Bernadette Kushartanti

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


In the first years of school-age, children develop their narrative skills, spoken and written. In writing, children learn to express their feelings on certain experiences through composed clauses in written form. This study deals with the written narrative about pleasant experiences as written by Indonesian-speaking children and focuses on the narrative structures in the text. The questions to be addressed are: 1) how do children tell their pleasant experiences in written form, and 2) what are the tendencies found in their writings? We aim to describe children's ability to write narratives on pleasant experience and to examine tendencies of narrative structure in their writings. The participants in this study are Indonesian school-aged children (8-11 years). They are third-, fourth-, and fifth graders who attend schools in Bekasi and Depok. This study uses qualitative and quantitative approaches. The data source of this study are children's handwritings which based on writing task 'I would like to write about my pleasant experience.' The writings were then copied in printed from and were sorted based on the clauses as the units of discourse. Discussion on the narrative structure is based on sociolinguistic approach, as proposed by Labov and Waletzky (1967/1997). To examine It is found that children in this study are able to write a cohesive narrative. Based on the analysis, the narrative structures found were single complete structure, single incomplete structure, multiple incomplete cohesive structure, multiple incohesive and different component structure, and complex structure. This study also finds that the complexity of narrative structure chosen by children in telling a pleasant experience is not influenced by their age difference. Finding in the present study will contribute to the field of development of written narrative research as well as in the acquisition of Indonesian language.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationOn Language, Education, Politics, and Identity
Subtitle of host publicationA Cross-Linguistics Perspective
PublisherNova Science Publishers, Inc.
Number of pages17
ISBN (Print)9781536193374
Publication statusPublished - 19 Mar 2021


  • Indonesian school-aged children
  • Narrative
  • Narrative structure
  • Pleasant experience
  • Writings


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