Thursday, May 17, 2018

Positive Teachers’ Camp Batch II


A Teachers’ Camp Batch 2 for teachers of SMA Negeri 14 Jakarta was held on 11 – 12 May 2018. It was conducted at Bumi Gumati Resort, Bogor. The theme of this two-day camp was Reflective Teaching: Let’s Learn from our Reflected Experience. Ramadhona, co-founder of GCI welcomed all participants and thanked the school principal for her support in this camp. “Through this Positive Teachers’ Camp, we hope that each of us will feel inspired to learn through this time together, particularly for the success of your school.” Dumaria, the school principal delivered her welcoming speech. “I would like to thank Generasi Cerdas Indonesia (GCI) for their continued collaboration. I am looking forward to following the sessions and interacting with the young facilitators.”

Teguh Khaerudin, a lecturer of UIN Jakarta led the session on reflective teaching. Just as it happened during the first teachers’ camp, a question was raised to interpret a quote which said that experience is the best teacher. John Dewey, an American philosopher, said we do not learn from experience, we learn from reflecting on experience. A teacher experiences different things from each class that he or she teaches. Our first evening session was about methods of reflective teaching. A teacher can also develop his or her skills in reflecting by having self-reporting, journaling and recording the learning process.

On the second day, we started having inner reflection and a sharing session. Umam, one of the facilitators shared how to apply self-reflection in our daily life. “Inner reflection plays an essential role in bringing more awareness to practicing gratitude. The participants were asked to have a quiet time with the input: What am I grateful for as a teacher? We shared in pairs and listened to one another. Miftahul Huda, another facilitator, led a session about active listening. Alfred Brendel said that the word ‘listen’ contains the same letters as the word ‘silent’. The quieter we become, the more we can listen. The participants practiced listening to another participant’s sharing without interrupting. They learnt to listen with the intent to understand.

Tanenji, a lecturer of UIN Jakarta, led a session about Creative Problem Solving. The participants were divided into groups and each group discussed questions that they wanted to ask and other groups would think of other groups’ questions. This session emphasized having discussions and that the importance of discussion is to listen to other points of view. Through discussions, the participants shared their thoughts on how to be an inspiring teacher and listened to others sharing their thoughts. In the end, each group presented the conclusions they made. During the presentation, the participants delivered the presentation by implementing 3 elements of communication which were identified by Albert Mehrabian, professor of Emeritus Psychology from UCLA: (1) 55% Visual (body languages, including facial expressions), (2) 7% Verbal (the words themselves), and (3) 38% Vocal (tones of voice).  Tanenji also asked the participants to reflect on how we can play our role in being a good Indonesian society.

During the decision making session, I shortly reviewed how the camp had been running. I then encouraged the participants to have self-reflection on the question: What can I do in accordance to my competence as a teacher? Self-reflection guides us to create action steps we can take. The quote was from Stephen Covey, being proactive means taking initiatives. As Tanenji stated in his session, “we do not have the authority to change the education system but we can create our own teaching methods in order to approach the students and to create a comfortable learning environment”.

In the closing session, Ramadona delivered his closing speech and encouraged the participants to apply what they have learnt during the camp in their school. At last we felt grateful for all committee members for their support, caring and great work.


Reported by Yofrina Octika Gultom