Yunnan Day 6/7: War of the Walls


As I sit here and create these posts of all these previously unreleased reflections, I really wish I had taken more time to organise everything because I feel that the reflections are messed up along the timeline. I guess the only person who would doubt my credibility and reliability now would be you dear reader, no?

That day I was assigned the scribe so here are some of our reflections (I really hope you guys don’t mind):

1) What are some potential problems we faced today & how do we intend to tackle them?

Joshua: Group of the cool girls, they treat it as a homework and a competition, and so that defeats the purpose of reflection. They are generally disinterested in what we have to say. We will try our best to talk to them and hope that they eventually warm up to us. One girl was ostracized because she cannot really understand so best would be if one person to follow her throughout the next few days. Simplify the questions for her.

Chong Ming: We need to take the soft approach first before we jump into sharing. They are quite scared to share their dreams despite the fact that they do have dreams. Slowly nudged her to use art to communicate.

Van: It was initially quite difficult to break down the first wall. But they are actually very prideful and they tend to follow each other. When one boy finally shared, the rest eventually shared and they were actually interested and shared well. Does it really meet our purpose if we continue to do things like an interactive play? Perseverance is key.

Jia Jue: They were very rowdy and unresponsive. But when we started sharing ourselves, they listened and gained more trust. Even though they tend to bully each other a lot, they are quite willing to listen. The key is really about opening up to them. But they also treat the dream journal as homework.

2) How do I feel now?

Jia Jue: at the end of the lesson vs the start made me less scared to face them tomorrow

Milton: as one of the ICs I was bouncing around and one of the potential problems is that since they are already very noisy, with everyone trying to help get their attention, everyone was kinda doing their own thing, it was difficult for the class IC. At the start, I was very angry but I knew it wasn’t the way. It’s good to have these frustrated thoughts but it’s what we do with them.

Jan: It would probably better if all of us go to the back except the IC so that the kids don’t get distracted by us.

Van: I was glad to see them grow up a bit more compared to last year that there was less physical bullying even though they were still pretty rowdy!

Glenda: We found the P3 teacher in charge and he was completely useless. I told MunYee and Tes to scrap progs for P3. But to scrap progs does not mean to scrap interaction. What you want to get out of this whole thing affects the way you look at the situation and the programmes. I’m grateful that the whole P3 incident happened because it brings us back to why we are here and forces us to really reflect more seriously.

Shi Yun: Quite scared that we can’t even interact with them but when we broke into smaller groups I think it was easier for them to share with us. Quite excited for the next few days and I can see hope.

3) What did you learn about yourself today?

Faith: Managed to build a bit of rapport with them and played along with them. What I learnt was to go along with their flow and stick with the progs for the sake of executing.

Jia Jun: what can we do better, let’s not hold it against them when what they do angers us because they are just a product of their environment. I also encountered moments like this where they scolded vulgarities. If you are good to them they will be good for you too.

Joshua: There were moments where I blanked out and was under a lot of stress. But to just keep going and hope that tomorrow will be better.

Joel: Personally as long as we have done our best it’s okay. whether we have set out to achieve what we wanted to achieve that’s another thing.

Chong Ming: I agree with Jia Jun and see things with perspective and you (start to) question (yourself), “Can I really do this?”


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