3 education students teach in Indonesian schools

Three School of Education students of the University of San Carlos taught Descriptive Text to middle-school pupils and Practical Life for pre-schoolers in Indonesia and have completed their one-month international pre-service training.

The three Carolinians were Mary Nikka Richae C. Abangan (BS Education, Major in English), Jeciel Dacillo Orias (Montessori Education) and Jan Joshua Cuevas (Bachelor of Elementary Education). They participated in an exchange program of the Southeast Asian Ministers of Education Organization (SEAMEO), which is popularly known as the SEA Teacher Project. During the same period for practicum from Jan. 15 to Feb. 13, USC also accommodated Indonesians Yayang Juniarta and Dea Dimyathi Agus Putri and Thai Sattabut Hemarak.

They were among 200 participants from 31 universities in Indonesia, Thailand, Japan and the Philippines who joined the program meant to provide opportunities for pre-service student teachers to experience teaching practice in another Southeast Asian country.

“We are proud of our students for having demonstrated the mark of Carolinian education today,” remarked Sr. Geraldine C. Villaluz, RSCJ, Ph.D., research chair of the USC School of Education.

Abangan taught Descriptive Text in the Bahasa Inggris 5 (Bahasa English 5) subject at Yogyakarta State University–Junior High School in Wates, Yogyakarta, a special region by the southern belly of Java Island.

Cuevas also taught Descriptive Text in the same subject in Grade 8 at PGRI University of Yogyakarta–Secondary School in Kota Yogyakarta in the heart of the same region between the cities of Jakarta on the west and Surabaya towards the east.

Orias (above), on the other hand, taught Practical Life for pre-school pupils at the Quantum School of Pakuan University in Bogor, West Java after the southern border of the capital city of Jakarta.

While in Cebu, the visiting foreigners undertook their pre-service training with Grade 10 classes at USC South Campus. Juniarta taught English, while Putri handled Science, and Hemarak, Mathematics.


Abangan said she first thought she might compromise her Carolinian character being in a culture with practices, beliefs and lifestyle different from what she has been used to. But she realized she was “living what it meant to be Witness to the Word.”

“Despite the challenges it was important for me to visit places, taste Indonesian food, and learn Bahasa to contextualize teaching-learning sessions to my enthusiastic learners with authenticity,” she shared.

Meanwhile, Cuevas said the program challenged him to give sufficient time to reflect his lessons. “Excited as I am to share, I took into consideration the fact that my students should learn English in the context of Indonesian customs, manners and places,” he explained, adding: “Sensitivity to cultural context was important in the teaching-learning experience.”

Orias, on the other hand, shared she was amazed at how she and her students showed respect to each other’s religion. “Majority of my companions were Muslims. We prayed together, though differently before meals,” she said. One of the Muslim teachers planned and managed to bring her to a Catholic Sunday Mass and still found the right time for his evening prayers, she added. Orias said the SEA Teacher Project taught her the meaning and relevance of interfaith dialogue and respect, other than the application of teaching-learning strategies.

The SEA Teacher Project that has eight Philippine educational institutions participating started with the first batch in January last year, followed by a second batch in August. USC joined the third batch, the recent one.

Sr. Villaluz bared that they evaluated last March 28 the experiences of the third batch to prepare for a possible teacher research exchange project.

USC President Fr. Dionisio M. Miranda, SVD, SThD signed the agreement with his counterparts in the 30 other universities in Yogyakarta on Oct. 2, 2016 that Dr. Gatot Hari Priowirjanto of Thailand facilitated as head of the SEAMEO secretariat.

Eight universities in the Philippines took part in the program. The others included University of San Jose – Recoletos also in Cebu City, Xavier University in Cagayan de Oro City, Saint Louis University in Baguio City, Far Eastern University and Philippine Normal University in Manila, and Miriam College and Technological Institute of the Philippines in Quezon City.

Tags: Education, International linkage

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