Saturday, June 25, 2005

leaving town continued

Last night at Youth, Bryce and Samn had the opportunity to share their thoughts on the topic 'Media'. It followed on from Dave's talk last week about television programmes. It made me 'reflect' back on what I'd been learning in my Society & Environment unit. The unit emphasised that we all should become critical-democratic learners. Being a critical-democratic learner requires the learner to not only be absorbing information, but to think about it, and give opinions and actions in response. It's actually an intriguing topic to me because it also talks about the influences learners get exposed to. What are the teachers (and I was thinking about the church as a teacher influence) saying? What is popular culture saying? What are the responses the learner has towards certain issues... etc. As learners (as Dave and Bryce both pointed out) we have the control over what we want to take in into our lives. We should not be the victims of our influences, but instead we should be empowered by them (by being active learners, reflecting and critical thinkers). Remember: The remote is in our hands!

Samn + Brycey

On a different note, there are more people leaving town... my cousin Jan has decided to leave Perth and head over east to Melbourne and continue her studies next semester at my alma mater Monash, we sent her to the airport on Thursday... and my other cousin Eve will be going back to Malaysia to do her occupational therapy prac and won't be back in Perth till September! And as for me, like my fellow classmates, I'll be going away (tomorrow to be exact!) - going to check out Kunming, China for 5 days and also back to Hong Kong for 9 day! yippee! can't wait!

my beautiful cousins - eve, jan, syl at the airport

Thursday, June 23, 2005

leaving town

I finished my final exam... what a relief it is! Now I finally get to relax for a few weeks (and clean up the pig-sty of my room! not looking forward to that..) Some of us decided to head down to the uni tavern after the exam finished... It was really great being able to hang out with some of the other people from my course... we often don't get to hang out together just because everyone is so busy and most have other jobs/ errands to do on top of this crazy course. The weather was nice, sunny and warm, and our gathering got quite big, so we moved down to the lawn outside and just lounged out on the grass - what a carefree life! One hot topic of conversation today was what everyone was doing for the holidays... it seems that the majority of my classmates (I'd say about 80%) are all going away, leaving town for a bit, getting away from Perth... hooray for travelling! btw happy birthday Louisa, the brave girl who had to sit for our most unappealing exam on her supposed day of celebration!

carol, nicole and a friend + soaking up the sun

chilling on the lawn + katherine
Speaking of leaving town, my friend Peter has left town to go back to his home country Poland for good. He'd been in Perth for about a year and a half and has been a brilliant bass player in the youth and church worship team. Hopefully will be able to see him back in town soon... otherwise we'll all have to trek over to Europe for a good visit! We had a surprise farewell party for him on Saturday night... a great night, a terrific party!

the worship team + ann and peter

anne & jess + peter giving some input

watching the video + samn

jess bryce anne + karina & peter - the cute couple

ann and anne + mike karina mat leanne

Saturday, June 18, 2005

rote learning sucks

Finished my prac, and completed another 2 exams... another 2 more to go (finishing on Wednesday) then it's holiday!!! yay! can't wait! I can't understand after spending a semester being preached to about norm criterion testing and exams not being a good way to show students' progress, I'm now cramming for exams (and all the information read keeps popping back out!).... a good way to show how I've reflected my study units? I don't think so. And I can't believe that it's been four and a half years such I last had an exam at uni... scary!!!

Anyway during my prac I was introduced by my fellow student teachers Matt and Dave, a pretty interesting time-filler: Sudoku - the brain busting number pattern puzzle that orginated from Japan. I haven't tried it yet, but I will after exams! Sounds like a prefect game to play huddled in front of a heater on a cold day.

Congratulations to Derek & Janice who are getting married today in HK, and to Rhiana & Kaz who are getting married tomorrow in Toronto!

Monday, June 06, 2005

having a rest day

It's Foundation Day's public holiday today in Western Australia... celebrating the day Captain Stirling and his crew entered the Swan region (Perth) many many years ago. Anyway I was able to sleep in today... I don't know how teachers do it, but how do you write lesson plans day after day and then have the energy to go and teach the kids?! I've finished one week of this prac, and another four days to go... really loving teaching the kids, not as excited about writing the lesson plans for each subject, and definitely not excited about having to revise for exams and also to start an assignment for LOTE. sigh!

Yesterday at church, Sante, a group from Sydney's CCC Oxford Falls came and shared and ministered. They were really awesome. I wasn't too familiar with the music, but that was the thing, it helped ignite real worship in me, not me singing words I knew to match the lyrics written, but it helped free my spirit into singing something I want to sing and say to God. I loved the experience. It was also good to catch up with Jeff Crabtree, a member of Sante... he stayed in my house in Hong Kong for a conference ages back... It's really inspiring seeing what God has done through his life to impact others.

It reminded me of what Brian Houston, from Hillsong Church, spoke about at the Leadership Rise last week. He said, "What's in your hand in your calling, it's what you do. What's in your heart is your purpose, it's what you love." and he went on to explain that often we forget about our calling, because we just want to see our purpose fulfilled. But it's actually being faithful to what you have in your hands, what you're gifted with, then and only then can it open what's in your heart. Another thing Brian said was, "Accept that God designed you the way you are." It really helped me put my priorities back into perspective. Often I strive to be someone I want to be, but the reality is, it isn't me. And reflecting it back into my teaching practices, I see so many fantastic teachers out there, and I really want to be like them, but I need to know and accept the teacher God has designed me to be.