Saturday, 27 February 2016
NIE News March 2016
By Office of Teacher Education
From left: Ms Lin Siyue (third) with her students at Dos Pueblos Senior High School, Santa Barbara, USA
Just a few of the phrases gleaned from our NIE student teachers’ blogs about their recent International Practicum (IP) from December 2015 to January 2016 include: “Incredibly eye-opening experience …”, “I have learnt so much …”, and “… enjoying the experience thoroughly…”
Since its humble beginnings in November 2012 with just one University Partner and a handful of student teachers, the programme has grown from strength to strength. Since then, NIE has successfully signed agreements with 12 partners across the globe – three in Asia, two in the USA, six in Europe and one in New Zealand. From its modest cohort some three years ago, now more than 60 student teachers from our Bachelor of Arts and Science (Education) cohorts have benefitted from this invaluable experience.
Firmly rooted in its purpose to help broaden and deepen our undergraduates’ learning experiences, the aim of an IP experience is to help student teachers develop a global mindset as well. From the December 2015 cohort, 10 of our student teachers returned from their IP from the USA, Denmark and Taiwan. Ms Lin Siyue who was attached to the University of California, Santa Barbara, USA, felt enriched by her experience:
“Being able to immerse in another culture by spending five weeks at a local high school is truly a valuable experience. I’ve learnt so much and gained a range of perspectives about teaching and learning from various members of the education system – teachers, the administration, student teachers, lecturers and students, themselves. I’m particularly glad to have gotten a Cooperating Teacher (CT) who is so willing to share her experiences, classroom management techniques and struggles with me – it was really amazing how well we have worked together and enjoyed each other’s company in the classroom!”
Mr Noah Zhang Hua’an who opted to go to Denmark had this to say about his attachment:
“Teaching in a school, with an education system vastly different from ours, has been an incredibly fulfilling and unforgettable experience. This is much more than just an international school attachment; addendum to this practicum stint in Denmark was a unique Home Stay Programme. I enjoyed being a part of my host family so much that at the end of the seven-week stay, I found it too short!”
Our university partners
Our latest partnership
From left: Assoc Prof Eddy Chong; Assoc Prof Ivy Tan; Assoc Prof Liu Woon Chia; Dean, Faculty of Education, HKU, Prof Stephen Andrews; Assistant Dean, School-University Partnerships, HKU, Assoc Prof Tammy Kwan
NIE signed a Memorandum of Agreement with Hong Kong University (HKU) in November 2015. This agreement facilitates the start of an additional University Partner to the IP programme. NIE is set to send its first cohort of up to four student teachers to HKU from November 2016.
In the true spirit of exchange, we had also welcomed 55 international student teachers from our University Partners. Likewise, the students were attached to Singapore schools for their International Practicum stints. The Partnerships unit at NIE works closely with the Singapore Ministry of Education (MOE) to expand our local School Partners to meet increasing demand. Some of the schools which have recently joined the IP network to host our international student teachers include Yishun Town Secondary School, Yishun Primary School, Anderson Secondary School, Anderson Primary School, Presbyterian High School, Rosyth School, Yio Chu Kang Secondary School and Woodgrove Primary School. We thank them, as well as the current School Partners, for providing these international student teachers with fruitful experiences and treasured lessons to take home.
Ms Jane C. Pejtersen from the University College Capital, Denmark, who was attached to Andersen Secondary School from July to August 2015 shared this:
“I got great support from my teachers, my mentor and the Head of the English department. It was great fun teaching different levels as well. I love that students have CCA after school so students can enjoy non-academic skills with their peers. We do not have this offer in Denmark… I also see the importance of teaching students the valuable learning of being able to live together as one nation despite different cultural and religious backgrounds.”