Becoming A Great and Inspiring Teacher

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Photo 1. Muhammad Jufrianto

"The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires."

William Arthur Ward's quote above may have inspired Muhammad Jufrianto, an English teacher and a school counselor of SMAN3 (High School) Takalar, South Sulawesi. As a teacher, Jufri has always dreamed to inspire his students through his experiences in order to motivate them to achieve their goals.

To realize his dream, Jufri desired to study abroad. At last his wishes finally came true through a scholarship program called USAID Scholarship PRESTASI Program. "PRESTASI is a scholarship program that makes my dream for over 10 years to study abroad come true," said Jufri.

Through PRESTASI, Jufri got the opportunity to pursue his master degree at ST. Michael's College, Vermont, USA. His major was in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) program. TESOL program is a study about how to teach English to people whose first language is not English. Jufri certainly took this program in order to increase his ability to teach English for his Non-Native Speakers (NNS) students.

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Photo 2. Jufri when making presentations in TESOL Conference 2014 at the Oregon Convention Center, USA.

This man, who likes basketball, admits that he got a lot of knowledge and experiences during his studies in the United States. In his study, Jufri focused on "learners centered classroom". He managed the class that focused on the needs of the students such as the needs of knowledge and skills development.

He reported the result of the "learners centered classroom" study in his caption project. In it, Jufri described the results of the analysis of learning outcome, and the methods of assessment and test. He combined the theory and the reality he faced in the classroom.

Jufri applies the knowledge he gained from the USA in teaching English, as his profession is an English teacher. One step at a time he applied it, from developing the lesson plan, teaching materials and to other things that he needs to teach English.

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Photo 3. Jufri with students in Kelas Inspirasi.

"Not only to my students, but I also want to share my experiences to other teachers. I am inspired to form a study group for the teachers called Teachers' Talk. This is the place for the teachers to share their experiences of how to handle the English classes based on the experience they got in the classroom. It is also useful to improve verbal communication skills in English for teachers, "says Jufri.

Not only in the English class, but Jufri also applies his knowledge as a teacher in the Inspiration Class in Takalar, South Sulawesi. Jufri shares his experiences during his study abroad to motivate others. He does so by telling his success to achieve his goals through hard work, patience, sincerity, responsibility and blessing of parents.

Through the Inspiration Class, Jufri also got the opportunity to teach Indonesian for Speakers of Other Languages (BIPA) for 4 months at Northern Illinois University (NIU), United States. In the program, Jufri was responsible to teach Indonesian language to speakers of other languages as well as to introduce Indonesian culture, especially to students at NIU.

It was a very memorable experience for Jufri as he could increase his ability as a professional and inspiring teacher through PRESTASI. To the younger generation Jufri advises, "If you have a dream, never stop trying, working, and praying. The success belongs only to those who strive and pray. Success does not depend on how smart we are, but how Our God sees our effort to convince Him that we deserve the dream. Believe, the result will never betray the effort."