First term was a very long 11 weeks. It began with me readjusting to teaching 4 days a week as opposed to traveling 7 days a week and finding time to blog was challenging and the longer I left it, the easier it was to find reasons why I was too busy! So here goes….
My first 5 weeks back are a bit of a blur as that was how long it took me to get back on my feet and cope with the exhaustion of both teaching and doing the preparation needed to teach. It also took me 5 weeks to rediscover the balance of what was needed for a 50 minute lesson with each year level!
HIghlights for the term include the following:
1. Bu Maylanny’s visit.
Bu Maylanny is a university lecturer from Bandung (West Java) and her 2 week stay was nowhere near long enough. Her visit was organised by the wonderful Pak Nyoman at APBIPA. She spent 2 days with us at PEPS and I still have students telling me how disappointed that they missed working with her in class. She taught us how to play bekel ( an Indonesian game very similar to knuckles except with a ball).
We played this with several classes and they all really enjoyed the challenge. Very tricky picking up beads with one hand and bouncing and catching a ball in the other!
2. Hearing Impaired Worksop; “Supporting Students With Hearing Impairment”
I am very lucky to have a sound field system in my classroom complete with microphone. There are several hearing impaired students at our school however I find that using the sound field system benefits everyone as when learning new vocabulary every one can hear clearly and it also benefits my voice enormously as I can just speak normally instead of having to talk loudly all day. I used to have huge problems with my throat and voice and thanks to the sound field system, this has largely been eliminated.
The one thing that I brought away with me from the workshop regarded the use of smart boards. I use mine constantly both for introducing and revision and it was pointed out to us at the workshop that smart boards are usually used in darkened rooms. My room has blockout curtains on one side and there is no doubt my hearing impaired students would have difficulty trying to lip read to support their hearing while simultaneously looking at the smart board!! Can’t believe I hadn’t considered this already!
3. State Grant for Establishing a Sister School
The schools on the south coast all applied for this grant and we were all successful which is sooo exciting. We each won $2000 which will go towards buying ipads so that students can communicate with our sister school next term about “sekolah”.
This term I finished up with teaching all the junior primary and middle classes how to play congklak. It is a game I have only usually taught upper primary students but have realised that years 1-3 can also play it and enjoy it. It was hugely popular with all students!