Taking international inspiration to the classroom Taking international inspiration to the classroom

Language students at St Rita’s College are reaping the benefits of diverse teaching strategies, leveraging on the conception of an international Japanese language teacher network.

Japanese teacher Mrs Chani-Alia Murtagh said she had been following language teachers in different countries for inspiration via Instagram.

“It was a great way to look at different international teaching strategies,” Mrs Murtagh said. 

“With us all being isolated in different countries and looking for connections to help this new way of teaching, we started having a Zoom meeting every fortnight to discuss different approaches.”

Mrs Chani-Alia Murtagh tries out a new technique with her Year 12 Japanese class. 

The group, whose common language is Japanese, started with three people and has now grown to include participants from Germany, Thailand, Japan and Australia. 

“Every two weeks we each present and discuss strategies, apps, online technology and techniques that we have found useful in teaching Japanese,” Mrs Murtagh said.

“The network is also a great extension for use of our language skills, sharing inspiration and building some very useful connections.”  

The newly-formed international Japanese teacher network meets via Zoom.

Year 12 Japanese student Sophie said she enjoyed Mrs Murtagh’s use of a variety of teaching styles.  

“We use a combination of traditional methods and online applications, and today tried the shadowing technique which involves repeating and translating after your teacher as a group,” Sophie said.

“I think it was quite helpful as it allows you to visualise and articulate the Kanji and the translation.” 

 The Japanese language teacher network will continue to meet each fortnight.