After signing its first formal provincial partnership with West Nusa Tenggara (NTB) in mid-2016, the INOVASI program implemented its first pilot in North Lombok and Sumbawa districts in the first half of 2017. Guru BAIK (with BAIK meaning Belajar, Aspiratif, Inklusif and Kontekstual) remains true to its local name: aspirational, inclusive and contextual learning. Or in other words, good teachers are those who are willing to learn and aspire to create an inclusive and contextual learning environment for their students. The pilot has since been replicated in other NTB districts.
In Central Lombok, the Guru BAIK pilot is currently being implemented with funding from local government and technical support from INOVASI. Initial teacher training began in September, to kick start the five-workshop series. By Guru BAIK pilot end, it is expected that teachers are well equipped to identify key learning problems in their classrooms, and develop learning scenarios and lesson plans to help improve teaching and learning for students.
The fifth and final workshop was held last month. Held every Friday and Saturday, workshops were carried out in sub-district clusters and teacher working groups.
“In general, all stages of the workshop, from the first to the fifth workshop have been going pretty well,” said Burdan, a local INOVASI facilitator for the Praya sub-district cluster and a primary school teacher at Tampar-Ampar school in Central Praya, Lombok.
Burdan explained that there have been significant changes related to the mindset of the teachers, especially when it comes to teaching approaches at the classroom level. Teachers are now no longer monotonous when they teach their students or when they develop learning materials. They are proving to be far more innovative, encouraging active student-centred learning. Before the workshop, teachers did not pay much attention to the learning material that was delivered and did not consider whether it was interesting or not for the students. Now, they try to develop learning material that is interesting, to keep students interested and motivated to learn.
“One important thing, after this Guru BAIK pilot program workshop, the teacher’s mindset became more open. Teachers are now more innovative in providing learning materials for students. It’s no longer monotonous, like with lectures,” Burdan said. He also emphasised the importance of teachers using their local surroundings to support learning. Materials in the local school environment can be turned into engaging learning props in the classroom.
In the final Guru BAIK workshop, teachers were also trained in principles of formative assessment, to help gauge improvements in student learning outcomes. Peer planning and evaluation is encouraged, particularly with the help of local INOVASI facilitators, to discuss what worked and didn’t work in the classroom. The aim is continual improvement.
“Why is monitoring and evaluation still being carried out? To ensure that the teacher is able to apply the training material provided in the classroom to maximum effect. In the end, the Guru BAIK pilot can be applied well in each school,” explained Burdan. Learning from experience is key.
After seeing the positive impact made by Guru BAIK so far, local government chose to continue the program in future with local government funding. This will be done with a select number of schools to begin with.
“In the future, we hope that the Guru BAIK pilot program should not just be here. Because it is very good and has a big impact on the teachers. Where teachers are taught how to provide good learning material for their students,” said Hilmiza Omniah Faozan, a teacher and workshop participant. Working at Selebung primary school in Central Lombok, Hilmiza spoke positively about his pilot experience, particularly the encouragement to teach with creativity and innovation.
“The process of the workshop has been very good. And, we as teachers are greatly helped by this Guru BAIK pilot program,” he said. When it comes to local government support, he hopes that the activity can spread to a much larger number of target schools. Guru BAIK is a program for all teachers.