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Another ‘first’ for PUPET: our Indonesia hub trains 18 aspiring sign language teachers.

10 November, 2017
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Our Indonesia hub, PUPET, has marked another milestone, delivering its first training programme for deaf Indonesians who want to become teachers of BISINDO (Indonesian Sign Language).

The training, which was run at the end of October by iSLanDS research fellow Nick Palfreyman and hub co-ordinator Muhammad Isnaini, was attended by 18 participants from Solo, Bekasi, Sragen and Boyolali. Over three days, participants covered a range of teaching skills, including effective planning, class management, developing thematic resources, and integrating linguistic and cultural content.

IMG_3413Participants discuss sign language with co-facilitator Nick Palfreyman.

One of the key aims of the training was to raise the metalinguistic awareness of participants. ‘The experience of the iSLanDS team over many years has shown that this is vital if deaf people are to become effective sign language teachers,’ Nick said.

He continued: ‘We were really impressed with the focus and enthusiasm of the participants, and PUPET will of course keep in touch to see how their teaching activities develop over the next few months.’

IMG_3492Co-facilitator Muhammad Isnaini gives feedback to one of the participants, as they explore a learning activity together.

The programme included 18 linguistic games, which made the training hugely enjoyable – but these games can also be used to teach BISINDO, and each participant was asked to introduce one of the games. This gave them the chance to increase their confidence to use such games in their own classes in future.

Oktaviany, one of the participants, said ‘I really enjoyed this training! It was interactive and fun, and now I understand how to plan the class week by week.’

Muhammad Isnaini added: ‘We would like to thank everyone who made this training possible, especially Clark Denmark, who kindly shared examples with us from his own experience as teacher of British Sign Language over many years.’

workshop_2The 18 training participants came to Solo from four other cities.

The training programme will be developed further to include examples based on the Corpus of Indonesian Sign Language Varieties, and PUPET plans to make parts of the programme available online in BISINDO in the near future.

The training took place alongside the testing of materials as part of the iSLanDS SIGNSPACE project, and was possible thanks to funding from the European Research Council and the Leverhulme Trust.

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