Carly Boulter, a final-year Education student with a passion for teaching English, Business and Visual Arts was one of the students who participated in the service learning trip. She says that her time in Cambodia was an exciting and eye-opening opportunity.
“I mostly worked in the library at the school, where different classes rotated through each day,” she says. “This meant I was involved in assisting many different teachers and students throughout the school.”
The service learning placement in Cambodia was focused on reciprocal learning, rather than simply volunteering. This meant that 91³Ô¹ÏÍø pre-service teachers could provide their skills and knowledge to assist within the school environment, but they also gained strategies and experience for their own teaching repertoire.
“I can already see how my experience in Cambodia is beneficial to my future career in teaching,” Carly says. “I learned a number of strategies from the teachers in the school that I will be able to incorporate into my own teaching. In particular, it was a great experience to guide teaching and learning with English as an Additional Language or Dialect (EAL/D) students, and I will be able to use this to benefit similar students within my own classroom in Australia.
“I also gained a deeper understanding of how historical events from the past can impact on student learning within the classroom. We learned a lot about the history of the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia and how this still impacts students today. Learning about this also influenced my understanding of Australian history and its impact on students in our classrooms,” Carly says.
Carly’s time in Cambodia was also an enjoyable way to expand her networks, both within JCU and abroad. “Outside of school hours I spent my free time with the JCU group. We shared meals together, explored Siem Reap, participated in pottery classes and went to the markets. We had time to watch the incredibly talented artists at Phare Circus and went on a tour of TonlÃ© Sap Lake and the floating villages.”
“My time in Cambodia was a really good opportunity to build relationships with other pre-service teachers. Spending time with the other students and our lecturer, Tanya Doyle, was an amazing experience. We created such a strong support network that still exists now that we are home. I will always value the connections I formed with this incredible group of people.”
91³Ô¹ÏÍø Bachelor of Education student, Carly Boulter