Situbondo- At 7:30am a member of the school’s staff picked us up in front of our hotel and drove us to the school where we are going to be educating students for the following 3 days. After reaching the SMKN 1 Panji, we were greatly welcomed by all members of the school’s staff with appropriate introduction and also a tour throughout the entire school and its facilities.
Right from the beginning of this day that I find to be remarkable, I quickly noticed of extraordinary attention that students paid to us. As I was told later, foreigners are only rarely spotted in Situbondo and therefore we witnessed this particular interest to greet us and approach us to say hi.
When this wave of greeting and saying hi gradually diminished, I had a chance to notice how clean the school’s environment was. There were many signs around all the school area how to keep our environment clean, how to separate rubbish and also how to be sensitive towards the environment that all of us are sharing.
A few moments later me and Wenjun visited a number of the classrooms where teaching progress was going on. Immediately after walking in the classroom, we were again the main point of interest resulting in taking group photos and briefly chatting with students. We also visited en English laboratory room, computer room and library. These study rooms had sufficient equipment to make teaching practice effective enough; they also were air-conditioned which can dramatically increase their attention span.
The only significant difference is their library that could be more equipped with relevant materials and other aspects of potential students’ interest as opposed to that of European or Australian ones, where these libraries are very spacious containing plenty of books, journals, newspapers and other sources of knowledge. When it comes to teaching methods and practice, this is simply something what I was not able to compare to the techniques known to me thus far. Hopefully next time I will be able to experience this side of perspective on my own in order to judge or compare the differences.
The school’s environment was very green with lots of reminding spots to make students aware of its importance. After this short tour we moved to an administration room to get ready for our presentations, which was our main assignment to undertake – environmental education and discussion. The staff handled all the arrangements precisely, we were constantly given refreshments and essentially all what we eventually needed and thus our preparations were going so well that we were ready in a blink of an eye.
Afterwards we moved to separate rooms in order to give our presentations; I was running the workshop called “Environmental Issues in the Czech Republic and Australia” and Wenjun was running the workshop called “Australia and its culture”. I tried to handle all my presentation in an entertaining way where students would be involved in the discussion part and would follow with their questions and potential concerns. I have to say that all students were cooperative and actively participating throughout the entire presentation, which vastly pleased me.
When all presentations had come to an end, we all moved to an administration room where we were served traditional Indonesian food for our lunch. The afternoon activities essentially involved our necessary preparations for the following day with different topics of our presentations. After leaving our work, we all together with members of the staff concluded this successful day in a local restaurant to taste some secrets of the local cuisine. Our evening activities again involved preparation phases for the following day.