Neha Kabra – Chemistry teacher -Singapore Intercultural School, Jakarta

Posted April 17, 2019 1:22 pm by

Neha Kabra is a Chemistry teacher at Singapore Intercultural School, Jakarta, Indonesia with 7 years of teaching experience and post-graduation in Organic Chemistry from Mumbai University. She has taught several curriculums including IBDP, IGCSE, ICSE, CBSE and Maharashtra State Board from various schools based out of Mumbai, Pune & Jakarta (Indonesia). She is also an online tutor, mentoring students across the globe studying various curriculums. She talks about teaching in Indonesia and more…..

Singapore Intercultural School
Singapore Intercultural School Bona Vista in Jakarta is one of the seven schools that the SIS group has in Indonesia. It is a school with a highly diversified group of students and caters to IGCSE, IBDP and Singapore Curriculum from Pre-school to K-12.

Education in Indonesia
The Indonesian education system has religion as a subject. Students in Indonesia learn about different religions other than their own as well. There are academic, spiritual, social and emotional advantages that come with attending a religion class. Religious studies are a diversified and multi-faceted discipline focusing on the study of specific traditions and the general nature of religion as a human phenomenon.

Let me share an example of how a non-Hindu student can learn a scientific fact from Hindu religion class. In the epic Mahabharata, some excerpts indicate the possibility of nuclear weapons being used in the Mahabharata war or post-war. This fire of suspicion has further been fueled by the recent discoveries of green glass and many radioactive samples in certain excavations in India which apparently were associated with the Mahabharata war. Green glass is said to form when sand melts at very high temperatures prevalent in nuclear explosions. This can become a great topic of discussion for Theory of Knowledge (TOK) which is an important component in IBDP.

Learning with music
Every student has their own style of learning. A lot of my students say listening to music makes them relaxed and stress-free, but everyone is different because I personally can’t concentrate with music on in the background. Further, music can actually help you learn too because all of us are good at remembering lyrics to songs because the melody and rhymes cement the words in your mind, students can use the same principle in studying too. They can remember the dates, facts or figures by setting them to music. It sounds cheesy but picking up a tune and substituting the lyrics with content (to learn) is a great way to remember things.

Teaching as a profession
There is an old saying, “Those who can, do. Those who can’t, teach.” Earlier teaching as a profession was looked down upon, but things are changing for educators now. Most teachers are dedicated and are in the profession for the right reasons. I personally love teaching and cannot think of anything else as a profession because I am passionate about what I do.

In recent past, teaching methodologies have changed a lot with evolving new curriculums like IBDP, IGCSE &different boards in the country, and growing significance to practical knowledge vs theory. With this shift in the education pattern, Teaching has also become a specialized profession to ensure level of education reaches new heights.
Today, teachers are in the public spotlight because of their direct impact on the nation’s youth.

But with evolving teaching methodologies, teachers are also overburdened with too much workload, lesson plans, collaboration and meetings, and along with this, teachers are always under pressure to ensure that their students get best grades in the subject they teach.I think one of the key reason for this is lack of parental support because most parents expect teachers to get the best results out of their child, whereas ideally there should exist a partnership between school and home for the student to have the best learning experience.

Technological tools for teaching
Teachers in the classroom are like entertainers who have to hold the students’ attention for the entire lesson and what can be the best way to do that other than using technology and newer mediums. Children today are tech addict and thoroughly enjoy the use of technology in the classroom, I have always received positive feedbacks whenever I introduce any technology in the classroom, be it simulations, interactive quizzes or virtual labs. Technology is causing a deeper shift in how students learn. So instead of labelling technology as a distraction, we should use it as a tool to make our students process information.

An Ideal Chemistry Laboratory
Today technology is evolving faster than ever; new devices become obsolete within months. Modern chemistry deals with extreme temperatures, unbelievable pressures, vacuums and incredible velocities. Even the students want to push their boundaries, explore and research more of their subject knowledge.

To overcome this problem, every chemistry department needs high tech laboratories of advanced equipment and also the capable faculty to fully utilize the equipment’s potential. A good chemist without a good laboratory cannot do much.

Singapore Intercultural School, Bona Vista
Jl. Bona Vista Raya,
RT.8/RW.6, Lb. Bulus,
Cilandak, Kota Jakarta Selatan,
Jakarta 12440