Social Sciences Olympiads 2012 Memorable Experiences
“IN OUR PERFECT WEAKNESS, THERE’S CHRIST PERFECT STRENGTH”
Social Sciences Olympiads 2012 was conducted by student council of the most famous public university, Social and Political Faculty, Universitas Indonesia. It was totally different Olympiads because it equipped the students and the teachers more than just competition, but memorable relationships, inspiring experiences, and fun learning activities. Actually, to get accepted, each school should choose 3 students to write 3-5 pages essay about youth social movement. It’s great privilege for me to be selected and meet 30 selected teachers and students in Indonesia and all over ASEAN. It consist of two categories first, 15 schools for National Category and 15 schools for Regional Category. We joined the Regional Category which consists of public and private schools from ASEAN that used English as main language for competition. You could see the selected participants who join SSO 2012 at the attached SSO 2012 PARTICIPANTS file. There were several competitions for students and one competition for teachers called Essay Writing Competition. Thank you for reading my attached paper and presentation for Social Sciences Olympiads 2012 Teacher Essay Competition! I just made it only three days at after school time. It’s amazing experience to race on very tight schedule and due date but I tried my best to submit my papers and presentations to the committee and prepare my students for Social Sciences Olympiads 2012.
Okay, let’s get down to our memorable experiences at Social Sciences Olympiads 2012!
Actually Social Sciences Olympiads is conducted at Faculty of Social and Political Sciences University of Indonesia, Depok, South Jakarta from 15-21 September 2012. We stayed together at Cilandak Apartement with all teachers and students. These were our unique competition experiences at SSO 2012:
1. Problem Solving Essay Competition
First, there was a Social Movement Seminar which was presented by Mohammad Iman Usman who is the University of Indonesia Student of the Year, and the founder of Indonesian future leader, social movement. We learned a lot the importance of social movement and how we could start a change with social movement creatively. The students were asked to make a short essay 3-5pages about creating social movement in solving Rohinya moslem case in Myanmar. We have very limited time from 9-12pm to compose our ideas. I guided my students to do research first about Rohinya Case and Social Movement at that night. Even though we were very tired, but we were commited to give our best for the essay. It was memorable moment when we made an essay in 3 hours!
2. Problem Solving Presentation
The students were asked to present the essay in front of the judges. The students learned how to present their creative ideas in front of the judges.
3. Circle of Knowledge (General knowledge Quiz)
The students were divided in group and they should answer questions about Math and General knowledge.
4. Movie Review
We learned first about documentary movie process directly by Indonesian director and producers documentary movie and we watched two beautiful documentary movies “Preserving Mangrove” which presented an inspiring old man who preserve mangrove plants in remote area and “Indonesia is not Islam country” which presented multicultural and discrimination case in Indonesia.
5. Teacher’s Essay Competition
Teacher’s Essay Competition was a competition for teachers all over ASEAN and it was divided into two rounds. First, in elimination round, I presented my “six thinking hats” paper among experienced teachers there.
To be honest, I am very doubt I could pass this elimination round because the competitors are presenting amazing paper too and they have more experiences than me. I am the youngest teacher there and I just quote from 2 Timothy 3:16, “Don’t let anyone underestimate you because you are young, but be examples!” I just did my best and surprisingly I pass the elimination round and I got in the final! The committee told me the specific results for elimination round and here are the finalists. The first place who got 1100 score is Salatiga 1 Public School teacher, the second place who got 1090 is Phillipines Science High School teacher, and me from Dian Harapan who got 1085. After this round, we should present our second paper to pass the final. Actually, at the first time, I feel wow..I am competing with the most experienced teachers and I just did my best and I don’t care about the results. Unfortunately, a day before presentation, I got a great toothache at the day and It was really weaken my condition. I could not talk or even eat well on that day. I am very tired because of the tight schedule and I got a fever also. I took painkiller but it did not work and it was painful. Well, on the presentation day, all finalist teachers were preparing and practicing presentation, but I just got sleep and I could not prepare anything because I was very sick. At that point, I felt I could not present my paper on the day but God strengthened me a lot. On the day, I felt dizzy on my head and great pain on my tooth. However, I was very nervous to present my paper to all experienced teachers and the judge from Universitas Indonesia. In effect, my great nervous just case away my toothache at the same time. I thought I forgot my toothache at that time. Then, I presented my “Gamification paper” . I felt like it was really God’s enabled me to talk fluently as if I was not sick. My friends said, “Your toothache suddenly disappeared when you presented your paper!” Oh thank God! However, the judge asked me a very deep questions, she said “Gamification is interesting method, but I think your method can’t be applied in all schools because it’s expensive and it require a “high-tech” teachers to understand and applied, what do you think?” and I just said directly, “Well…I think that’s the point when gamification could inspire and encourage teacher from all over Indonesia learn more about tech, and for schools without tech, I think they could adapt the gamification element and create a manual badge for them.” Aah I just surrender to God for my spontaneous answer. At that point, I compared myself to another finalist presentation which is more applicable for Indonesian schools. I thought it was okay because I didn’t prepare well on my presentation because I was very sick and I felt I was too young to win this competition.
These are another inspiring moments at SSO:
1. Jakarta National Monument (MONAS) Visit
The students had fun games and historical exploration by watching Indonesian history diorama inside Monas. I think Monas Diorama is a great place to inspire students to picture Indonesian History.
2. Dewan Perwakilan Rakyat (DPR) Visit
There were public lecture by Indonesian government and we learned to ask critical questions about rules, constitutions, corruption, and social issues to the government.
Unfortunately, the government could not clearly give applicative answers for our questions.
3. Cultural Performances
There were 30 cultural performances from different regions in Indonesia. This was fantastic experiences to learn more about local music, drama, and dances which reflected the diversity of Indonesia. We performed “Ondel-ondel” dance which is famous and funny cultural performances. Everyone felt excited with our performances. We learned a lot to appreciate the diversity of Indonesian culture.
Especially, my students who usually have the same culture (Chinese) and religion (Christian) friendship at school learned that people who have different religion such as Islam and non-Chinese are very unique and nice. Before that, they actually are afraid of them but they found they were gentle, kind, and welcome people. We were practicing the true solidarity there!
4. Teacher Talkshow
This was one of the best moments when teachers could share about their teaching journey and we could learn a lot from the speaker’s experiences, Mr. Satrio who shared fun teaching methods to all teachers. I learned a lot from many public and private schools challenges in funding, motivation, teaching methods, curriculum, accreditation, administration and all stuff related to education. I am very blessed to learn from Philippines educational system which give more freedom to each students to develop their own potential. I also learned how Madrasah School (Islamic School) put tight boundaries between man and woman in their schools such as a strong limitation of different gender personal touch, meeting, and space. I truly learn each school has different values and cultures that enhance my insight about the reality of Indonesian education. After this we made our special “Yearbook” for Social Sciences Olympiads 2012 teachers community, we were committed to strengthened one another to build Indonesian education.
Finally, we have fun awarding night at Restaurant in South Jakarta. It was the announcement of students and teachers achievement in Social Sciences Olympiads. To be honest, me and my students did not expect much on the awarding night. We just want to have fun closing time with all parctipants! Surprisingly, at awarding night, the committee announced our students got the second place on Problem Solving Essay Competition. My students were totally shocked because they did not expect it before. They were very glad after they got the silver medal. At that time, I was completely thankful and I thought it was more than enough to see my students were experiencing God’s amazing favor to them. But, God hasn’t finished yet with His miraculous favor for us. At the end, surprisingly, the committee announced The Winner of Regional Teacher Essay Competition is…
STEVEN from SMA DIAN HARAPAN!
At that time, I felt it was like a dream but I still felt my toothache then I think it’s not dream. I could not believe it because I was competing with all greatest teachers from ASEAN and I won it! “Thank you Jesus!” oh Wow! At that time, I believed that in my perfect weakness, God’s power is perfect for me. He was the one who gave me the victory! The committee gave me a gold medal for winning this competition and at that time I thought all Social Sciences Olympiads committee, lecturer, the students, and all teachers were shocking because I was too young to win this competition because they knew I had been sick so much. Then, a lot of people congratulated me with surprised expression. I thought my toothache was a real blessing for me! What a lifetime experience! When I came back to school, all of teachers, staff, Curriculum Coordinator, and my principal congratulated me and my students. My students testified, “Did you know, we got unexpected silver medal and Mr. Steven got unexpected gold medal and he was definitely the best teacher of ASEAN in Social Sciences Olympiads. It was at our weakest point but it was at God’s strongest point. Thank God!”
For sure, Social Sciences Olympiad’s one of the best moment in my life and I eternally thank UPH TC and SDH Daan Mogot who greatly impact my life to have sustainable growth as professional Christian teacher. Definitely, I believe God is preparing me for more transformational experiences with Christ-empowered capacity in me! (2Cor 12:9)
“IN OUR PERFECT WEAKNESS, THERE’S CHRIST PERFECT STRENGTH”