Indonesian Teachers Meeting With The District Curriculum Advisor

One of the local Indonesian teachers, Cheryl, organised a meeting with our District Curriculum Advisor , Mel Jones, and generously allowed Hannah (my student teacher) & myself to gate crash the workshop. With the implementation of the Indonesian curriculum (and thus reporting to it) in 2016, our familiarisation time has almost finished. While other teachers seem to have been overwhelmed with curriculum support, there has been little available for language teachers, especially, it seems for regional language teachers. Up to now, the only training we’ve accessed was organised inhouse. We invited Andrea to workshop our hub group last year and Intan also has helped where possible at our Intan conferences and AGM’s. Intan members also received an email this week from our marvelous and generous Intan president, Brent, advertising the following seminar for next Friday:

At our hub meeting yesterday, we followed the link to the above seminar excitedly, and then groaned as we looked at the price; $286!! With my annual T & D budget of $50, the difference is exorbitant. Hopefully if we ask our principals to contribute the difference with curriculum monies, it might be possible?? My principal in particular has been very supportive considering the inequitable amount of training available for specialist teaching staff.

So the possibility of sitting down to a locally held workshop specifically for Indonesian teachers to  help us “unpack” the curriculum, assess how well we’ve covered it to date in our classrooms and then design an assessment task that will help with reporting to parents and for moderation was too good to be missed.

We began by looking at the content descriptors in each of the substrands for F-2 and on a grid, writing the ways in  which they have been covered this year. This is how I filled mine in and considering it was done very quickly and off the top of my head, I was thrilled with the result:

Socialising – calling the roll daily and asking students ‘apa kabar?’

– Activities eg listen and draw, arranging song/story lines into the correct order

– songs

– brainbreaks iincorporating gestures and movement (eg kasi game, Bu Cathy berkata, )

– class instructions eg. cari satu teman, matikan lampu, Bu Cathy mau mengabsen, duduk di ekonomi (my room is set up like an airplane – kelas satu, kelas 2 & ekonomi),

– TPR (Total physical Response)

Informing – asking/telling stories

– target structures (new vocabulary) eg finding them in the text

– rearranging song lines and then singing the song together

– acting out songs/ stories

– illustrating song/story phrases

–  discussing the size of the jacket – terlalu kecil/terlalu besar/pas

– Movie talk  – eg Mr Bean

Creating    – acting stories/ songs

– writing shared class stories


– songs

– rearranging the song lines and siunging together

-making a shared class book – eg Sekolah Saya (year 3’s making it for our partner school)

Translating – comprehension checks

– word walls

– displays eg seragam sekolah, Boleh saya pinjam?, numbers,

– introducing target structures using visual pictures eg a picture of a cicak with the word  ‘cicak’ written underneath it, the same for dinding, jendela, kursi & pintu.

–  greeting adults who enter my room Pak/Bu

– presenting at assembly the different ways in which Indonesians greet each other

– contributing to class displays of ‘cicak di jendela’ & ‘cicak di dinding’

– grammar pop ups eg ‘c’ (cicak) is always pronounced ‘ch’

Reflections – cognates eg pizza, sprite, hotdog, jaket, hamburger etc

– etiquette eg  mencium means to kiss and to smell, kasi hormat,

–  cultural manners eg pointing, gesturing come here,

– the gender vs age difference (we are more focused on gender however age is of greater significance for Indonesians)

Systems of Language –  TPRS step 1 – introducing  the target structures eg repeat the TS in various voices  modeling the trilling of the ‘r’, the pronouciation of ‘c’, the short vowels etc.

– personalisation eg jaket Ebony terlalu besar? Ebony pakai jaket?

– basing stories around high frequency verbs eg makan, minum, pakai, kasi, punya and using these verbs in sentences which are meaningful and relevant to the Caleb mau  minum sprite? John mau pakai jaket?

– incorporating question words and negatives into my circling. eg. cicak di dinding. cicak di dinding atau cicak di jendela? cicak di pintu? cicak dimana?

– introducing conjunctions eg students answering apa kabar? with panas dan haus.

– using the roman alphabet to write the target structures on the board.

Language Variation & Change – Students ‘kasi hormat  kepada’ visitors appropriately.

– All visitors to our room are greeted using Pak/Bu

– use and discuss the cognates in stories

– greeting the first class of the day with selamat pagi and the rest with selamat siang. Encouraging students to greet Indonesian teachers out of class reinforces this.

Role of Language & culture – meeting our many Indonesian visitors throughout the year and understanding that Indonesian is their national language.

– Asking ‘Boleh saya Bahasa Ingriss?” before using in English in class.

– playing games like hom pim pah & batu, kertas, gunting to choose participants.

– choosing texts about cicaks, kancils, orangutan.

– greeting teachers appropriately eg hand to their forehead.

How great is that!! TCI, TPRS & TPR complement the Indonesian curriculum beautifully!!

We next moved onto the Indonesian Achievement Standards. Mel had already ‘unpacked’ it for us and this is what it looks like: (excuse my scribbling!)


We went through this together and discussed it with Mel. We had several questions for her which she will follow up for us:

1. Does the wording ‘such as’ mean for example or does it mean that the vocabulary include must be covered?

2. What does the ‘similarities and differences in meanings of words’ mean?

3. What does “comment on aspects of using Indonesian’  mean for teaching junior primary students?

4. We also want to know how a F-2 student can present a news report in Indonesian!!! (more to the point, why?)

Following on from understanding the achievement standards, the next component of this workshop was to learn how to use the achievement standards and the content descriptors to plan a unit of work. We realised then that we haven’t yet met to plan term 4. Sharon suggested using a kancil story from Siara Siswa which we all agreed had great potential as students love the wily kancil. Mel gave us a proforma which helped to break down all the aspects of the curriulum that could be covered via the kancil story. Here is my sheet:


After realising just how much potential this story has, we put our heads together to create an assessment task that is appropriate for F-2 students and will provide them with the opportunity to demonstrate a variety of achievement levels.

Mel shared this to help us:


We pointed out that it didn’t truly apply when using TCI to teach Indonesian  For example we took ‘name’ and demonstrated that if we asked a student, “ini pensil atau ini cicak?” while holding up a pencil, how could that be ‘lower intellectually’ challenging for language students? One could argue that circling operates at a lower intellectual challenge level yet because it is all conducted in Indonesian, that surely is requires a higher intellectual challenge!  Still it was food for thought.

Creating an assessment task definitely was a higher intellectual challenge!! We could all suggest many ways in which students could demonstrate pproficiency at a ‘C’, yet it was harder to provide students with an assessment task that provided them with the opportunity to demonstrate above average achievement. We wracked our brains and thankfully Sharon suggested showing students a picture from the Kancil story and asking them to tell the teacher as much as possible about the picture using Indonesian. The sentences would be graded:  ‘C’ if the student could accurately describe the picture using simple yet correct sentences, ‘B’ if the student could accurately describe the picture using complex sentences and an ‘A’ if the student accurately described the picture using complex sentences incorporating additional vocabulary from previous stories and class work.

Other sheets that Mel shared with us included:

image image

The one on the right also comes in all other year levels and will be available soon (hopefully early next year) digitally and the boxes can be checked off!

If you want any more iinformation  or would like your own copies of any of the handouts we received, please contact Mel on Fleurieu Teacher Talk on Facebook.


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