The weather’s fine. It is 22 Celsius degree today and everyone looked happy; smiling with bright faces. And suddenly, I saw the juice stall in the Agora – a rendezvous place in La Trobe University – became crowded. I remember I had to return some books I borrowed from the library as I couldn’t extend them anymore. After returning the books via the returning booth, I walked back to my office.
As I passed two workers vacuuming carpets in front of Business Department building, I saw two ladies wearing lovely black shirts. One was wearing a black shirt and the other one came with an attractive ornamental bling. They seem to be European. As I didn’t know them, I just kept walking while enjoying the beautiful flowers fully blossoming in this lovely spring.
Suddenly, after a few steps, one of the women said, “Hey, you inspired me!”
I hesitated and stopped for a while. I don’t think I’ve met them. I looked around, there were only three of us in this place. I got confused.
“Yeah, you’re right.” Her friend, the one who wore the bling, seemed to affirm.
I bet I looked silly because I looked around to make sure they were talking to either themselves or someone else. But, one of the women pointed at me and said, “Yes, you. We’re talking to you.”
I turned back and walked approaching them. I said, “Sorry, I don’t get it. What do you mean?”
“You came to our class last time and gave a talk,” said one of them.
“I am sorry, which class?” I need to ensure myself as I just recently gave talks in two classes. One was in a Masters’ class having the pedagogical principle subject and the other one was an Indonesian class.
“Oh, the Pedagogical Principle,” they said. “Your talk was very good!,” they added.
I then remembered. I went to a class where my supervisor is teaching this semester and I shared some of my experience learning in a Western context. Knowing that most of the students come from the International context, I tried to share something common, such as issues of being autonomous and the need to critically think on particular ideas and matters. I understand that, like me, coming from a didactic learning context could be challenging when learning is expected to be student-centered in an active engagement.
As I shared my experience, I also didn’t forget to share the fun part! Joining any important activities that may support one’s professional development can be one of them. Activities, like teaching students learning Indonesian, organizing events in the Indonesian students’ association, participating in the Youth Summit ASEAN Forum, competing in the 3-minute thesis, or attending various religious events were some of my highlights. Yet, I understand that others would likely to have different activities and ways, for sure.
“Oh, thank you,” I said. “I was only sharing my experience, though,” I added.
“No, we learned a lot from you as you experienced more than us who just newly came here. And we found the things you shared were inspirational!”
I could sense the enthusiasm in their talk to me. Their hands went up, high-fived my hand that raised automatically.
“Well, thanks so much!” I said.
I walked back to my office and smiled. It’s a lovely spring!
Tulisan ini dibuat untuk #SumpahPemuda. Selamat hari #SumpahPemuda, kawan. Selamat belajar, semoga suatu saat ini apa yang kita pelajari dan lakukan bisa memberi inspirasi bagi lainnya.
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