ACICIS was delighted to welcome yet another group of great teachers from New Zealand on their Indonesian cultural connection trip from October 6 – 10 2017. Together with the Asia New Zealand Foundation, ACICIS hosted the group in Yogyakarta over five days, where they were able to immerse themselves in Indonesian language and culture, and visit many of Yogyakarta’s much loved cultural and historic sites.
Throughout the program, the group visited two arts vocational high schools in Yogyakarta, witnessing a more relaxed, yet very creative studying environment. Not only were they able to witness the fun studying environment but they also had the chance to participate in one of the Javanese dance classes at the school, which was a hit with both participants and school teachers alike!
In addition to exploring Yogyakarta schools, the group also had the chance to immerse themselves in traditional village life in Turgo, a small Javanese village at the base of Mt. Merapi. Staying in a traditional farm house, participants were able to get to know the people around the village by learning how to cook local specialties with host families. In Turgo, the group also visited the local primary school and kindergarten, where they witnessed an early Monday morning ritual: the weekly Indonesian flag-raising ceremony. The children from the Sanjaya primary school had a great time dancing and playing with the participants throughout the visit.
Aside from the formal educational activities with host schools, the group also took in many of Yogya’s beautiful sites: exploring Kotagede, the old town in Yogyakarta, through silver making and a walking tour; taking a jeep tour around Mt. Merapi; and taking in Borobudur at sunrise and the Ramayana Ballet against the backdrop of Prambanan.
Thank you to all of our New Zealand friends from the North and South Islands, and a huge thank you to Sean and everyone involved at the Asia New Zealand Foundation for making these tours available to NZ teachers and principals. Looking forward to hearing how you bring Indonesia into your classrooms, and of course, to seeing you all again in Yogyakarta!