Year-End Staff Seminar
The annual Year-End Staff Seminar (YESS) on 29th and 30th December saw the return of all Dunman High Teachers to the School Hall, refreshed and ready to start a new year ahead. The Day 1 programme started with Dr Foo’s address during which he reminded the staff the future path of our education system is to promote holistic development of students with the focus on values and character, create lifelong learning and opportunities over a lifetime for all so that we can help to build a cohesive society with a rugged people.
He continued to share with the staff the guiding principles when meeting parents. To be able to communicate effectively with staff and stakeholders, in particular the parents is one the fundamental roles of teachers. With the growing number of highly educated parents who are familiar with education topics and resources, it is important that teachers be fully prepared with accurate facts to discuss issues face to face with them. Having said that, Dr Foo pointed out that while some parents could be critical; some were constructive in giving suggestions that could help the school to improve.
During the Professional Learning time, our guest speaker, Professor Jasmine Sim from NIE Curriculum, Teaching and Learning, gave a succinct introduction of the Schiro’s four Curriculum Ideologies, which are the Scholar Academic, Social Efficiency, Learner Centred and Social Reconstructionist. Simply put, an ideology is a way of looking at things and each of the four ideologies has its own values system; its own purpose of education and its own meanings for words. When the DHS teachers were asked to draw a figure to represent their curriculum ideologies, they realised what Professor Sim said about no one holds on a single ideology to the exclusion of others and it is more of everyone having a dominant ideology over the others.
The Vice Principal, Mr Chua started the Day 2 programme rolling by sharing work life harmony with the staff. He elaborated on how the school had refined the organisational structure and streamlined workflow using the MOE teacher work management framework. All the changes made and measures put in place are to help the staff to strike a balance between work and family life.
The highlight of the second day programme was definitely the staff bonding activity. This year, the theme of the staff-bonding was “HOME”. To promote closer and better interactions among the staff, the SRWC organised a Roti Prata making session in the School Hall. After watching the demonstration of Uncle Choo, our very own canteen Malay food stall owner, on how to make Roti Prata, the staff eagerly laid their hands on the dough to make the “kosong” (plain) prata. Having successfully pressing, tossing, flipping and frying the prata, all staff was all set to make their own prata with different fillings. All of the staff had a great and enjoyable time discovering who were creative and who were adventurous to try out new things.
DHS staff’s high spirit was not dampened by the electrical fault of hotplates at some tables, at the call of the SRWC host June Kit, they started to play their imaginations to make creative products out of the prata dough and various ingredients provided. At the end, the staff got to cast their votes on three teams whose products that could bring out the “Home” feelings the most.
The grand finale of the YESS was the prize presentation for the following awards:
- Most Innovative Teaching Award (JH & SH)
- Outstanding Contribution Award (Individual)
- Outstanding Contribution Award (Group)
2015 YESS was indeed an event which all staff got to eat, play, learn, win prizes and receive gifts. As the Jubilee year of national building comes to an end, DHS staff looks forward to another exciting year in 2016 when the school celebrates her 60th anniversary.