14 students and 1 memorable Indonesian Study Tour

Kilvington and Global Jaya International School (GJIS) share a common vision: ‘to be schools of excellence offering a holistic education to girls and boys, enabling students to excel individually and contribute meaningfully to the world.’ Our visit to the GJIS in Jakarta was highly successful, not only as a means of fostering our relationship with this school community on an international stage, but it also allowed students to fully experience another culture. Students were immersed in family and school life and they had opportunities see how people live in Indonesia.

Indonesian Study Tour1TIndonesian Study Tour4

The fourteen students displayed depth of character in all their interactions with fellow students and staff. They commenced the trip clinging to the other students in their Year level, but within a few days they had bonded with each other regardless of age. It was really a delight to see the little Year 6 boys explaining things that they had heard or seen to attentive older students or to see a Year 9 student offering assistance to one of the younger students who was struggling with the number of Rupiah notes required to purchase that special present for his dad.  They displayed respect and concern for each other when walking through the busy streets of Yogyakarta. They made sure that all were present and travelling well, looking out for each other crossing the roads or when exploring the Sultan’s Palace.

Moving from Yogyakarta to Jakarta and GJIS, students enthusiastically immersed themselves in daily school life and the special cultural activities organised by the GJIS staff. They were taught how to play the instruments of the Javanese gamelan orchestra. They exercised their creativity when making Batik, and they ate traditional foods. Visits to places such as, ‘Mini Indonesia’, allowed students to gain an overview of the diversity of Indonesia. Students also had plenty of time to reflect on life at home and in Indonesia whilst trapped in a classic Jakarta traffic jam – the development of patience is a virtue! The homestays proved to be popular and some told me it was “the best bit”. The families were very welcoming and hospitable.

My colleagues, Sebastian Earle, Teresa Deshon and I had opportunities to meet with staff at each of our levels to discuss the possibilities of future projects. I am keen establish projects at Year 7 and 8 levels so that students have opportunities to develop a broader perspective of the world and to nurture an appreciation of other cultures – Aust/Indo cultural Pinterest board for Year 7 and an international book club for Year 8. Projects like these will also add another dimension to the Kilvington Writing Flagship.

At the farewell dinner many tears were shed, and hugs and well wishes and promises of return visits were shared – a wonderful reflection of the huge success of this trip and of the wonderful possibilities that lie ahead for both our schools.

Marian Le Bas, Academic Dean of English

Student Reflections

The Indonesian Study Tour was a real eye-opener. Indonesia is home to 250 million people so the streets were always busy and full of life. This trip gave me a real understanding of their lives and culture.

Each day we attended normal lessons at GJIS with our year level, but in the afternoons we participated in cultural activities such as painting and traditional Batik tye-dyed shirts, attended the Jakarta Zoo and Duofun, as well as sight-seeing. After school we usually went out with our host families to dinner and other activities such as ice skating or more shopping at the many malls! Overall the trip was a very exciting and fulfilling experience.

Ruby Tighe-Martin, Year 9

Some of us had to get up at 5:30am to drive for an hour to get to school which started at 7:30am. Our school activities consisted of art, sport and on Friday we went to a big mall. On Friday night we had the leaving ceremony which was very sad. It was hard to say goodbye to our host families and new friends made.

I really liked how Indonesians work together in such a big community, and I also like their traditional food. I think everybody loved going to Indonesia and would love to go again.

Spencer Tighe-Martin, Year 6