Summary and Suggestions

The SEA Teacher Project or the “Pre-Service Student Teacher Exchange in Southeast Asia” is an exchange program that aims to provide opportunity for pre-service student teachers from different universities in Southeast Asia to have teaching experiences (practicum) in schools in other countries in Southeast Asia.

Based on the SEAMEO seven priority areas for the eleven SEAMEO Member countries to work together to improve the quality of education in Southeast Asia, “Revitalizing Teacher Education” is one of the priority areas in building and strengthening capacity of teachers in the region.

The exchange program is geared towards 4th year University students whose major are Math, Science, English and Pre-school. The program is executed for a month with the expenses carried by the exchange – students . Students’ roles and responsibilities are assigned weekly during the one month period (observe, assist in teaching, teach and reflect). Moreover, the host universities will provide mentors to supervise and monitor the students throughout the practicum period.

Objectives of the Project

  • To enable pre-service student teachers to develop their teaching skills and pedagogy
  • To encourage the pre-service student teachers to practice their English skills
  • To allow the pre-service student teachers to gain a broader regional and world view
  • To expose future teachers to diverse teaching and learning situations and opportunities, and the value of flexibility.

Lessons learned

Students:

  • Should prepare lesson plans, materials and health insurance in advance prior to travel
  • Gain more confident & increase social skills
  • Able to improve their teaching pedagogy
  • Facilitation process:
  • Coordinators play an important role.
  • Mentors who understand the process.
  • Various channels of communication: Line and WhatsApp

Key Success Factors

  • Active mentors are very helpful in providing guidance to students.
  • Supportive schools enable students to conduct their practicum successfully.
  • Students who have open-minded and positive attitude.
  • Procedure of practicum
  • Able to observe and learn how other country teach their students
  • Able to prepare lesson plan and materials to made learning fun
  • Able to improve teaching skills and pedagogy

Outcomes of the practicum

The program contributed on my improvement as a future teacher. It boosted my confidence on teaching. It improves my flexibility in term of dealing with students in different culture and language barriers. It learned to modify my lesson in a way that the students can easily understand the lesson and partipate actively. It helped me built strong relationship and friendship with the teachers,students and friends which makes it hard to say goodbye. And I help me learn more about their culture,beliefs and their language.

Challenges of the practicum

The challege is how to break the language barriers among the students as most of them can not speak English at all and considering that english is their foreign language as compared to us who learned english as our second language our whole life. This changelle eventually turned into an appreciation of our diversity as the students really tried hard to speak English with us in order to be understood and I learned to appreciate their effort in showing how much they want to learn english to be able to speak with us.

Overall Impression

I can say that the I have confidently attained the objectives the program and its a success for both me and the Seamo. The project opened up a new world for future educators like me and Seamo made it possible for us to embrace not only our cultural difference but also the different bariers. Education in South East Asia is very diverse but with this exchange program we became one with them.

Suggestion for improvement

One month is too short for us to learn. I have much more to learn and they have much more to learn from us considering the period. When we finally learned to adapt with them and finally built a strong attachment, we have to go back to our country. And it makes it hard to bid goodbye knowing that you have much more to learn. But its still a good experience and we can still communicate with them with the use of technology.

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