ASILE conference presentation:
Teaching through Keywords: 3 years of ANU's pioneering school-to-tertiary program
Bridging the school-to-tertiary divide has been a significant issue in the ACT and the Australian National University now offers a 2-year course to Year 11 and 12 students as part of its wider Extension Program. Students of the course are engaged through performance-based activities, guided online research, and high-order content delivered by Indonesian experts at the ANU. Course content sits well outside the norm of conversational language instruction and instead targets significant content-orientated Indonesian keywords, language features and English derived cognates. This allows a mix of beginner and experienced students to be taught in the same class, and mediates many of the problems found in linearly designed programs. In an effort to capture the interest and capabilities of today’s digital-natives the course embraces the blending of languages made possible by modern technology and processes of globalisation, and seeks to build students’ capacity to engage with a constantly evolving language.
This paper will describe the design and implementation of the course in its first 3 years and outline its future directions. It will discuss how student numbers have behaved, the theory and real experience of a mixing skill-levels in a student cohort, how the program has linked school-based education and tertiary studies, and how it has forged connections between language teaching and other Indonesian expertise at the ANU.
Zara Maxwell-Smith studied Indonesian at the Australian National University and now splits her time between teaching Indonesian at a Canberra high school and Indonesian culture and politics at the ANU in their Year 11 and 12 Extension Program. In 2013-14 she was the ACT Indonesian Teachers' Network Leader, before taking some time off to have her first child. She launched the "Australia Bisa Bahasa Indonesia" YouTube competition this year via her website buzara.org, with a view to lifting the profile of Indonesian in Australian schools and overcoming some of the difficulties Indonesian teachers often face. She is a board member of the Balai Bahasa Indonesia ACT.
ANU, ACT Department of Education/Caroline Chisholm School