Baby Shark

I’ve been looking at the Baby shark YouTube clips and wracking my brain how to adapt them to comprehensible Indonesian,  i.e. using minimal new vocabulary. There are a couple of Indonesian versions and my  favourite one is this one:

While I love most about this clip is that it is in Indonesian! However, the pace is little too fast for my junior primary students and it uses language that I would rarely use in a classroom context e.g. berburu (hunt), selasai (I prefer to use sudah), aman (selamat would be a better choice from a TCI perspective). I do like the use of ‘Ayah’ though, which is definitely more common than ‘Bapak’ these days.

Then this morning, I found this brilliant Spanish version and just love the simple language it uses.


Incorporating the simple language and the slow pace of the Spanish version, I have attempted to create a song video based on the following lyrics which I believe are more appropriate for my junior primary students:

Bayi hiu
Ibu hiu
Ayah hiu
Nenek hiu
Kakek hiu
Hiu lapar
Ikan kecil
Berenang cepat
Sampai jumpa!

If you would like to see the video, inbox me on Facebook and I’ll send you a link. As it is not 100% my own creation, I can not publicly list the video!! I also need to prewarn you about my not so wonderful singing ability!



‘Sayang’ written by Helene van Klinken

Last term, the junior primary classes looked at the text, “Sayang” as part of their study about keluarga. The book is one of books in the Seri Mari Membaca, a series which I believe is out of print now.

The illustrator of “Sayang” is Sutarno and it is the illustrations that I love most about this book.

20140503-150332.jpgI love that the illustrations are of Indonesian people in an Indonesian setting and they are not westernised. I acknowledge that they are a bit stereotyped however, as it is not a negative stereotyping, it should provide a good opportunity for discussion.
The text in my copy has been altered by a previous Indonesian teacher who seemingly wasn’t comfortable introducing the word “aku”!

As these books are tiny (21cm x15cm), I decided to create a notebook file of the story for my students to make it more appealing. I photographed each illustration and then wrote my own text as I wanted to utilise the opportunity to introduce verbs, names and keluarga vocabulary. As Helene van Klinken has done in all her books, I kept the text repetitive to make the text as comprehensible as possible. For example, for the page about her mother, I wrote;
Ini Ibu saya.
Namanya Setia.
Ibu memasak di dapur.
Saya sayang Ibu.
I then asked an Indonesian friend to read the story while I recorded her doing so and attached each segment to the relevant page. This was a brilliant idea on so many levels. Firstly, my students were able to listen to a native speaker, which they absolutely loved. Secondly, Bu Mei read the last sentence of each page by putting stress on “sayang” (just as we would say, I loooove my mum) which fortunately emphasised the very word that was the point of the story! Thirdly, it was brilliant because it saved my voice! I could sit back for each of the 6 classes and just click on the picture and Bu Mei’s voice would fill the room and had us all spell bound!
Each time we focused on this story, students commented on the lack of colour in the pictures, so during week 10, I photocopied each illustration and enlarged it to A3. I then drew an 8×4 grid over each one and this was photocopied again as the master. Each class was assigned one of the picture grids, which was cut up into 32 rectangles. Each student was given one of the rectangles to colour in. The first class to complete this task provided me with the best example of why it is important to sit with others who are working on the same part of the picture!! Some of the following classes did an excellent effort and worked so cooperatively together. The pictures have all been laminated and are now up on a display board above a table where I often heard students discussing them while working on their work last week.