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Stand up, Sit down

A couple of weeks ago I was lucky enough to have Bu Cathy stay at my home and visit my classroom. While she was here, I told her about an activity I used to do with my LOTE classes in English, as a warm-up. It was singing ‘My Bonnie lies over the Ocean‘. Students are asked to stand up (and subsequently sit) whenever they hear a word that begins with ‘b’. (Lots of fun when the chorus kicks in!)

Bu Cathy and I then came up with an Indonesian version to keep the input in the target language! It goes like this:

Susi tidak suka Sydney

Tidak suka Sydney Susi

Susi tidak suka Sydney

Kembali, kembali Susi

Chorus: Susi, Susi, Susi sakit dan sedih, sedih

Susi, Susi, Susi sakit dan sedih

This is sung to the same tune as ‘Bonnie’ and students stand up or sit down with every word that begins with ‘s’. Tried it with my Year 1s, 2s and 3s last week. The Year 1 and 2s were a bit all over the place,  but Year 3s really listened carefully and had lots of fun standing and sitting at the appropriate times. Try it with your classes! Fantastic Brain Break. Afterwards, I asked my students to tell me what the song was about.

Suka Suka

Another great idea inspired by Bu Cathy! I was trying to think of a way to get lots of reps with ‘suka’ (like) for my junior classes. Bu Cathy had posted about a game called ‘Double This Double That’. I realised this could be a fun way of getting those valuable reps!

Suka, suka es, es

Suka suka krim, krim

Suka es, suka krim

Suka, suka es krim

We went through the rhyme very slowly, line by line, repeating until all kids had it. Then I asked them to form two circles facing each other. We practised all the rhyme slowly once, then the outside circle moved around to the next partner. We did this until they were back at the start. It did not get boring as each time they had a new friend! Gave the struggling kids time to get the hang of it also.

Year Prep to Year 3 learned the rhyme. I then asked them to go home, teach someone at home, practise it at school with friends, practise against the wall and try to go faster and faster. The video below is what one class came up with – they were so proud that they could do it as a big group! I was totally blown away! Afterwards, we had the challenge of a whole class clap. Parents have come to me to tell me their kids are driving them crazy with the clapping rhyme (what wonderful feedback). So change the words to suit and get clapping!

TPRS Elementary Facebook snippets

Amy Roe teaches Spanish to young children and sells great picture story books on Teachers Pay Teachers – here is her response to a question about keeping the attention of younger students. I thought it was really helpful.

Amy Roe – This is my tenth year of teaching with TPRS and CI. I have found that my elementary students are the most engaged when I support the story with pictures. I do about half picture stories (which I then print out and add to my classroom library) and half story-asking stories. With kindergarteners, the story asking stories are usually very short. They go something like this:
Papa Bear. Who wants to be Papa Bear? (I call on a kindergarten student and give them a Papa Bear mask to put on.) Is Papa Bear big? Yes, Papa Bear is big. (Everyone shows me the action for big.) Is Papa Bear medium? No, Papa Bear is not medium. He is big. He is not medium. He is big. Is Papa Bear small? No, Papa Bear is not small. He is big. He is not small. Papa Bear has a plate. What size is the plate? (The class decides — big, medium, small.) Oh, Papa Bear has a small plate. Does he have a big plate or a small plate? Right, he has a small plate. So small! Does Papa Bear like the small plate? (The class decides.) Oh, Papa Bear does NOT like the small plate? Does he want a medium plate? (The class decides.) Oh, he does not want a medium plate. Does he want a big plate? Yes, he wants a big plate! He wants a big, big, big plate! Does he have a big plate? No, he has a small plate! Is Papa Bear happy? No. Is he sad or is he angry? (The class decides.) Oh, Papa Bear is ANGRY! Papa Bear says, “I do not like the small plate! I want a big plate!” (At this point in the kindergarten story, I ripped up the small paper plate I had and had Papa Bear throw the pieces — shock and awe from the class!) In a normal story, we would end here, since my kindergarten students have about a five-minute max for how long they can sit and listen to a story. However, ripping the plate was so cool that it gave me another few minutes of attention, so I pulled out my Star Wars masks (my kinders love Star Wars). I had Papa Bear go to Yoda. Yoda had a plate, and the class could decide whether it was big, medium, or small. Then Papa Bear went to Darth Vader. My class decided that Darth Vader had a big plate, but he would not give it to Papa Bear. Then Papa Bear went to R2D2. R2D2 also had a big plate, but he wouldn’t give it to Papa Bear either! At this point, I saw two kids starting to wiggle, so I ended the story. Papa Bear was angry! No one gave him a big plate! We all stood up and stomped our feet and roared with anger. Then we moved to a different activity.

A great question!

Hola grupo! I am off from school now and trying not to think too much about teaching…but there is a problem that is plaguing me and I need some advice!
Every year we have new students, never had Spanish. My students who have been with me since pk are fantastic. I feel pressure to start over for the sake of the new kids but I feel like I am not challenging my other kids. How do I challenge them? How do you all keep the balance between new kiddos and old? Gracias!

Amy Moeller Scott  – I just let them listen for the first several months, and don’t expect a lot of output. Sometimes I’ll call on them, and when I do, I give them extra help. I’ll say to the other kids things like, “Wow, wasn’t that great? He’s never had Spanish before this year!” Basically I just try to give them lots of encouragement and give them the easiest questions or simplest roles. I can’t afford to go backwards for them, so they just pick up whatever we’re learning at the time. For them it’s more of an immersion situation than CI. They seem to do pretty well and by their second year with me you almost wouldn’t know they’d never had Spanish. Also, I use spiraling techniques, so that helps, too.

Maria Plupis Sanjurjo – I have a listening center that new students can go to to get caught up. But I tell you its a challenge! I have students that arrive half way through the year!


Blaine Ray’s Kangaroo Story

Finally I have a chance to sit and write a blog – my first since the beginning of this year! I feel like this year has been very hectic and overwhelming.

The first story I asked this year with my Year 2s and 3s was an adaption of Blaine Ray’s kangaroo story as told to us at the conference in January. I used an elephant, mainly because 1) it is an Indonesian animal and 2) I had a very big one and a very small one handy!

It went like this (underlined words are characters students came up with):

Ada laki-laki. Nama dia John Cena. John Cena tidak senang. John Cena mau gajah.

Ada perempuan. Nama perempuan Taylor Swift. Taylor Swift punya gajah besar. Taylor Swift tidak senang. Taylor Swift mau gajah kecil.

Ibu Anne punya gajah kecil. Ibu Anne senang!

Taylor Swift beri John Cena gajah. John Cena senang. 

Ibu Anne beri Taylor Swift gajah kecil. Taylor Swift senang. 

Ibu Anne senang? Tidak!

Taylor Swift punya gajah besar.

The beauty of this story is that kids expect that Taylor Swift will be happy because she has a big elephant. But she isn’t! It really hooks them in!

‘Punya’, ‘beri’ and ‘mau’ were revision words from last year. I wanted to see if my students had really acquired them. We had used ‘senang sekali’ but not senang, so I began by telling students what it meant, then asking PQA, ‘Susi senang?’ ‘Ronald senang?’ ‘O, kelas, Ronald tidak senang! Kenapa tidak senang, Ronald?’

I then began asking the story, getting names of characters from the class. I brought actors to the front and used the giant and small elephant. It was very engaging! Afterwards, I gave the students a quick quiz 10 Q and was happy to note most scored 9 or 10.

The following week, I asked the students as a group to retell the story as I drew pictures, cartoon style, on a large piece of paper. I carefully questioned them to elicit correct details. Then I asked if anyone wanted to ‘read’ the pictures. Here is a sample year 3 video of the result. I was stoked! I realised some of my pictures needed improving because when students hesitated it was because they couldn’t remember what my picture was or it did not contain enough cues.

I also prepared a powerpoint cerita 1 2017 story about a principal who wanted chocolate, and then converted the powerpoint to a movie. We read the story together in class and I gave it to students as year 3 HW. Not all students completed the activity, but for those who did it gave me some valuable feedback, as I asked for comments from the parents as well as a signature. I made it into a class competition – the year 2 winning class would have a special treat (we haven’t decided what yet) as well as the winning Year 3 class. I placed the movie on my youtube channel Indonesian Fun for Juniors as extra support for those students who may have struggled with the reading.

TPRS Conference in Brisbane 14-15 Jan

I was so excited and very fortunate to be one of the attendees at the first ever TPRS-CI conference at QUT, Brisbane, Australia presented by three very well-known masters of the craft, Blaine Ray, Terry Waltz and Lizette Liebold.

Here are some notes I made of the demonstrations/talks by the presenters. I hope that the notes I made may be of some use to others.

Blaine Ray

TPRS (Teaching Proficiency through Reading and Story-telling) is based on ‘The Natural Approach’ written about by Stephen Krashen in the 1980s. It is based on the input hypothesis, that we learn a language through lots of Comprehensible Input. (CI)

Blaine’s Powerpoints about TPRS

The input hypothesis is based on constant repetition of new ideas. TPRS-CI takes time and practice.

Two Rules for class

  1. No social talking, using iPhone or sleeping
  2. Never say anything -ve about class

Three Procedures

  1. When I make a statement, respond with a sound ‘ooooh’. (Blaine prompts this with hand signal)
  2. If I ask a question, answer with a yes or no in the target language.
  3. If you don’t know the answer, you may guess with English names of things. Surprise me!

Blaine uses student actors. They are required to answer in whole sentences, to gauge how remainder of class is going. If they struggle, class is struggling.

Use clicking fingers, or soft clapping, to indicate you have not understood. The rest of the class needs to do this too, to support the student who has not understood. Praise the student for doing this!

Blaine began by picking out a student and saying ‘Xiao is a girl’ (in Spanish). He then circled:

Xiao is girl one. Is she girl one or two? Is she a girl or a boy? Is she happy or not happy?

He introduced a second person, Michelle Obama.

He continued:

I am happy because I have a kangaroo. I have a mini kangaroo. Xiao does not have a kangaroo. MIchelle has a kangaroo. He had all these structures on the board, and constantly referred to them by pausing and pointing. He said many times ‘If you forget, it is written right up there on the board’.

It is my kangaroo.

Xiao does not have a kangaroo and she is not happy.

Does Xiao have a kangaroo?

Does MIchelle have a kangaroo?

Michelle has a big kangaroo.

Is Michelle happy? No!

Michelle is not happy. Michelle has a big kangaroo. Michelle wants a mini kangaroo.

He often asked ‘What did I just say?’.

Always have a story where someone wants something. Blaine used 3 actors; Xiao (student from class), Michelle Obama and the big kangaroo. He interspersed Qs to the actors with Qs to the whole class.


  • constantly referred back to the board
  • used actors
  • asked actors to speak in whole sentences
  • repeated things ad nauseum (but I am a Spanish speaker – no-one else felt like that)
  • pointed and paused LOTS!
  • used grammar pop-ups (explain grammar as required or if kids ask)

Remember ALL kids are slow processors when it comes to learning a new language.

Actors are used as guides (barometer) for teacher – are they getting it?

If kids aren’t getting it, circle more and add more characters.

Blaine does not use front-loaded vocabulary (pre-taught vocab).

In years P – 2, everybody has to be an actor!

Whole class does sounds: aaaah

Blaine’s online resources

Recommended Text – Fluency through TPRS

Someone at the conference suggested having a picture for every word taught, especially to help younger students or those who need visual support. Kristy Kranz told me that she uses Boardmaker to find suitalbe images for some of those trickier words. You can access a 30 day trial at the link below. Get the super seven and any other high fluency words for no cost!

Boardmaker free 30 day download

  1. Ask a story (don’t tell!!)
  2. Make stories last as long as possible to get maximum reps.


Here is the Spanish reading (with the three steps of reading) Blaine prepared for us after our ‘class’. Translation:

The girl is Xiao. She is not happy because she doesn’t have a kangaroo. Xiao wants a kangaroo. Xiao is girl one.

Michelle Obama is girl two. Michelle is not happy. She has a kangaroo. It is a big kangaroo. She doesn’t want a big kangaroo. She wants a mini kangaroo. Michelle is not happy because she doesn’t have a mini kangaroo.

I am Blaine and I am happy. I have a mini kangaroo. I am happy because I have a mini kangaroo. My kangaroo is Barney.

Xiao wants a kangaroo. Xiao goes to Michelle. Michelle gives the big kangaroo to Xiao. Xiao is very happy because she has a big kangaroo.

Michelle goes to Blaine. Blaine has a mini kangaroo. Blaine gives the mini kangaroo to Michelle. Michelle is very happy because she has a mini kangaroo.

I am not happy because I don’t have a mini kangaroo. It is a problem!

Use CCI – compelling, comprehensible input.

‘I remember that which I learn with pleasure’. Quote from Blaine.

As an aside, I met a girl named Winnie at the conference and loved her homework idea. She writes her simple story on a single page for her students (could include pics for  younger kids) and gives it to them to take home to read to parents. The parents have to listen. Then kids translate to parents, so they understand what story means. Finally, parents write the story in English, and sign off the homework. Love the idea! You could even get your students to do the pictures in class before taking it home.

Lizette Liebold

TPRS is story asking, not story telling!

TPRS leads to:

  • higher percentage of students reaching advanced levels of a language
  • even non-finishers of language at high school level have some fluency

Learning versus acquisition

Learning                                                                          Acquisition

result of study                                                                 how we learned L1

conscious                                                                          unconscious

effort, drills, practice                                                    no effort required

info about language                                                       S is unaware it is happening

language learning is like another subject               sounds or feels right

CI (Comprehensible Input) must be:

  • meaningful (personalize it!)
  • understood (T’s responsibility – do comprehension checks! Use gestures or images to help)
  • interesting and engaging (personalize it!)

Terry Waltz

Circling most important. Gives S time to acquire. Uses lots of repetitions. Aim for 100 – 120 reps. Some kids need more, some less. It is all about COMPREHENSIBLE INPUT!!

Ask questions kids know the answer to.


  1. Pick a sentence. Anything you say is true. eg ‘Xiao is a girl’
  2. Your sentence is true. Anything else is false. eg ‘Xiao is hungry.’ No-one else is hungry!
  3. Ask Qs about that sentence ONLY.
  4. Ask ‘YES’ questions.
  5. Ask ‘NO’ questions. S need to hear negated form.
  6. Ask either/or sentences.
  7. Ask 5 W questions: who, when, where, how, why
  8. Be unpredictable – make ’em squirm!

What do I circle?

Circle NEW language.

Circle things they are not firm on.


Terry gave us the above example to show how circling can be made more interesting and relevant to the curriculum by adding ‘shadow’ structures. She then gave us some circling cards for us to practise our circling skills with, we did this in our L1 in small groups.

Terry’s cool circling cards

Terry told us:

  • put all new stuff on the whiteboard and point and pause all the time
  • Don’t shelter grammar, shelter vocabulary! (Don’t shy away from more complex grammar, use natural speech for the situation. But DO limit the amount of new vocabulary you expose students to)

Grammar pop-up for Indonesian teachers!

benar/salah = true/false or correct/incorrect

betul is less formal = right

Terry recommended a good book for classroom management – Tools for Teaching by Fred Jones

She suggested not using Blaine’s ping-pong reading activity unless kids know the vocabulary really well.

After circling well the above, you can then add another fact by asking, ‘Where does Bob want to buy noodles?’ You can also stretch things out by saying a beautiful long answer after S gives a short one. ‘No class, absolutely not, Bob does not have a kangaroo.’

You can throw a 3-FER into the mix, that is restating the correct answer, then adding the negative, then restating the correct one. eg He met his girlfriend at the library. He didn’t meet her at the water treatment plant. He met her at the library. ( I like the way the students then get to hear ‘her’ as well as her name.

Make sure you go SLOWLY!!

Count 1 hippopotamus 2 hippopotamus after each statement/question. Or try tapping on your palm to slow yourself down. Give one S a job as Slow Policeman to ensure you are going slowly enough.

Regularly ask ‘What did I just say?’ (in L1) for a comprehension check.

Use grammar pop-ups (What does this word/part tell you?)

Put up helper words like ‘and’ ‘or’ and ‘because’ up on your board, as well as question words.

Indonesian pop-up

a masa! = no way, that’s ridiculous

The Rules of TPRS

This is what Terry uses in her classroom (print out from link above)

  1. Listen
  2. Two – can only use 2 words of English when you are stuck
  3. Stop – stop me if you don’t understand with a gesture eg clap gently
  4. Grandma – don’t say anything that my Grandma would not like
  5. Wow! We are smart, we say cool, interesting things.

Useful gestures: when you rewind, walk backwards and roll your hands backwards. ‘and’ is fists together. Always use these gestures to help kids understand.

When you are writing stuff up on the board, or getting something ready, remember that teachers are very uncomfortable with ‘dead air’ but S aren’t. They are probably using the time to take in new stuff, or having a brief rest. Pause and point OVER and OVER. Bactrack if people aren’t getting it.

Terry showed us a photo of her board. She had conjunctions across the top, question words down the side and known words down the other side.

3 Steps of TPRS

  1. Establish meaning
  2. Use the language – ask a lot of Qs, personalize, use paralle/shadow characters for more Qs and reps
  3. Read the language

Terry tends not to use actors, she works the crowd! When you point and pause – don’t move the pointer! Too distracting.

Circling a Skeleton

Skeleton is the bones of the story, meat is the details.

Teacher has the skeleton in his/her head, S add the details through asking/circling.

Let’s make a story!

  1. Establish a fact. mau beli topi = wants a hat.
  2. Go fishing – ask a Q. Who wants to buy a hat? Point and pause. SLOW. Use the magic fairy dust gesture, this indicates to S that no-one knows the answer and they need to make something up.
  3. Throw fish back NICELY. How to reject a suggestion: a. Love the answer. Give it lots of love. b. Throw it back but do it nicely. Good idea, but… Maybe… Oh, you’re thinking of (someone else)
  4. Keep the big one!
  5. What if you get no bites? Have some bait ready. Pictures on ppt of popular characters eg Harry Potter, Elsa, Mickey Mouse, sports stars. Talk to a partner about who wants a hat, when you are ready raise your hand. OR take an idea from the jar (can have prepared people jar, places jar and things jar, taken from student interest surveys) OR if kids just don’t answer, warn them they will get the worm – Barney the Dinosaur or Justin Beiber! We fish to get repetitions. Don’t take the first answer!
  6. Share the secret – Kelas, James Bond wants to buy a hat!
  7. Circle, circle, circle – point and pause every time.
  8. Fish the next fact. Fish for more detail OR the next sentence in the James Bond is in Canada.
  9. The problem. Write a script out. The first try to solve problem always fails! And sometimes the second and third try!)
  10. Free ending.

Terry used slides as in the examples above for us to practise reading the Hawaiian we learned.Most of the characters we were able to guess even though we had never seen them before, due to the comprehensible input we received while circling. The pictures helped us with the meaning. I thought this would be a great way of introducing reading to younger students, with lots of visuals as support.

Beginning Writing

Some ideas:

Give 4 pictures – write captions under the pictures

Draw a story. Students can retell the story by pointing to pictures.

You can have a parallel story about Putri at the same time as your story for cultural information.

For reading, 98% of text should be known.

We talked about the super seven.

Indonesian Super Seven

Location (to be at a place) = (pronoun) di
Existence (to exist somewhere, “there is”) = ada
Possession (to have something)  = punya
Identity (to be something or someone)  = saya/kamu/dia
Preference (to or dislike something) = suka
Motion (to go somewhere) = (pergi) ke
Volition (to feel like doing something) = mau
Get your students to learn these first. With the super seven you can make amazing stories!

Just found a cool little tool to write objectives on Terry’s website. You can find the objective writing tool link here.


Lizette Liebold, Terry Waltz, Ray Blaine and Ian Perry. Ian was the brainchild behind getting the TPRS conference in Brisbane and did so much work to get quality presenters coming to Australia! (photo taken by Sheryl Saunders at QUT Kelvin Grove)

Sample Year 3 Story

NO changes by teacher!

Ada keluarga. Ada bapak. Bapak nama Donald Trump. Ibu nama Hillary Clinton. Ada laki-laki. Laki-laki nama Kazi. Kazi suka bermain salju. Kazi lihat orang salju.

Kazi berkata, “Halo orang salju!” Orang salju tidak berkata. Orang salju lari. Kazi lihat Donald Trump. “Bapak, orang salju lari!”

Donald Trump berkata, “Kazi gila! Orang salju tidak lari!”

Kazi lihat orang salju lari. Kazi beri orang salju wortel. Orang salju berkata, “Terima kasih.”

Oh, I love TPRS!!!

Oldie but Goodie – brain break

Today younger students loved the Number Game – I used to do this one all the time and haven’t for sooo long!

Play some cool Indonesian music. Students walk, dance around the room. When the music stops, they freeze. Then T calls out a number in the target language, and students have to form a group of that number.

Once they have the correct number, they sit down. Teacher walks around and counts, or left-over kids do the job. Great for practising numbers and for getting the wiggles out of littlies!!!

They were so much more settled after this game. I even tried it with a tricky year 3 class, they loved it.

Movie Talk for Elementary and Primary Students


I decided that as my report cards were almost done for the year, it was time to try out something new in the classroom. MovieTalk was it! I read through Bu Cathy’s blog about Movie Talk and had a look at Martina Bex’s blog. Martina had a cool powerpoint which she used in conjunction with a movie about two wildebeests. I ditched that particular one, as she used it with beginners – I wanted something to revise lots of language we had done throughout the year. Plus the cognates (like ‘tronco’ for trunk in Spanish) didn’t really suit Indonesian.

Someone suggested a clip from Frozen. I took a look at it and thought ‘Wow!’ I was able to use lots of vocabulary we had introduced already, such as ‘mau’ (want), ‘lari ke’ (run to), ‘tidak bisa’ (cannot), ‘berjalan’ (walk), ‘cium’ (smell – which I had done with Preps but not other year levels, but apparently it doesn’t really matter if you use new vocabulary – after all, the students can see what you are talking about, and I check for comprehension and also used a real ‘bunga’ for them to sniff!), ‘jatuh’ (fall down), ‘lihat’ (see), ‘punya’ (has), ‘sedih’ (sad), ‘senang’ (happy), ‘beri’ (give). Some new ones were ‘salju’, ‘es’ and ‘bersin’ (snow, ice and sneeze). You can see there are many high-frequency verbs in here!

Firstly, I watched the video at home and made up a script for the clip. I think I may have become a bit carried away and made the script too long, but as it is being used for revision I am hoping it will be OK. Then I made a powerpoint presentation with photo stills from the story and added text, a la Martina.

I showed the kids about 4 photo stills from the first scenes of the clip and talked about these. I asked them in L2, ‘Who has seen snow?’ Who has made a snowman? Do you eat carrot? Have you got a carrot nose? I showed them a flower and asked them to smell it – ‘Cium bunga’.

Then I began showing the clip (no sound) and stopping it everywhere something important happened that contained the structures I wanted to introduce/revise. I stopped it at the scene where Sven gives Olaf back his nose and they are happy.

Lastly, I showed the clip it its entirety without stopping, with sound. This meant the students still had the surprise at the end. There a a number of things you can do post-movie talk.

With my Preps – 2, I intend to a One Word Image about a snowman, so we can re-use the lovely structures we used in the movie talk. We will also choral read the power point story together.

Here are some activities I will choose from to do with Year 3s:

  • Show them the story in text only (no pics) and have them ping-pong read or echo read.
  • Show them text and one person acts out a line, others have to read and guess the line.
  • Use words from the text in a Wordle. I read the story and they try to beat each other to find the word I stop on.
  • Liar, Liar – I ask personalised questions from the story, they have to lie about the answers!
  • Fix- It-Dictation – write a line that teacher reads, fix it, translate it.
  • Choose 2 – 4 sentences, copy, illustrate.
  • Quick Quiz
  • Tidak Game – teacher reads lines from the story and makes up some silly ones that are untrue. Class has to listen carefully and shout, ‘Tidak!’ when teacher fibs.

Wow! I reckon that should keep me (and them) busy until the end of the year!

I also made a movie clip where I slowed down the clip to half speed, said what was happening, and included a text. This can be seen at my you tube channel, Indonesian Fun for Juniors. (Olaf dan Sven) If you click on the CC at the bottom of the screen, a red line should appear beneath it and text to accompany the audio will appear.

olaf-dan-sven-movie-talk   Here is the powerpoint I made. It does have one small error, which my students have not been able to find yet. I told them first one to tell me gets a prize. Can you find the error?

Helpful advice: Don’t talk about photo stills first with Preps, go straight into the movie clip – it was too much listening for them!

One Word Images

I have been thinking about trying one word images since I read about them on Bu Cathy’s blog. So today I took the plunge with my Prep classes. I found a large cardboard box in the office, and took it into each class with me.

I asked the students, ‘Apa ada?’ (What is it?) They came up with a few suggestions. When one student said ‘Ular’ (snake), I agreed. I asked if it was big or small, what colour it was and what it was doing: ‘Ular makan? Ular berjalan? Ular lompat?’ (Is the snake eating? Walking? Jumping?) by giving choices using known vocabulary.

The first class said the snake was green and orange and it was walking to a mountain (child said ‘mountain’ in English, so I just translated and went with it. We had used the word some time ago) with Ibu Anne. The second said the snake was green and brown and it was eating all the class! The third class said it was pink and brown and it was eating a small mouse at Point Cook College.

The subsequent drawings were sooo cute, and gave me a great indication of who understood the discussion. They all asked me if it was true and if they could look in the box, which of course was empty! Lots of fun!

Looking forward to trying this activity with the older kids as well.