Sue and Yeni markedly improve linguistic skills


A language teaching unit barely two years old is achieving remarkable results with Transition to Year 6 students at Woodroffe Primary School.

The Intensive English Unit works largely with children arriving from Papua New Guinea, China, the Philippines, Bangladesh, Vietnam and India.

Principal Miranda Watt said the school’s IEU teacher Sue Hargreaves, and Language Liaison Officer Ketut Suyeni (Yeni) have helped many of these students to become proficient in English and enter mainstream classes.

“Sue has designed and developed a program applicable to students arriving at Woodroffe with very limited English, and those able to communicate through speaking and listening,” she said.

“She and Yeni overcome learning obstacles in these children by working in small groups, by repetition, and by including them in mainstream events such as lunch with English-speaking children of a comparable Year level, Harmony Day, exposure to a garden with familiar vegetables, and by celebrating the diversity of languages.”

Sue Hargreaves, formerly an English as an Additional Language or Dialect tutor, has been a teacher for eight years and previously worked at Marrara Christian College, St. Philip’s College and Yirara College.

Yeni, who has six years’ experience in Intensive English teaching, transferred from Sanderson Middle School’s Intensive English Unit this year.

Ms Watt said both educators use a content-based program founded on phonics and grammar, speaking and listening, and build literacy and numeracy by employing topics such as insect life cycles, Australian culture and geography.

“The program has successfully built relationships with Darwin communities, such as the Vietnamese and Papua New Guinean communities, encouraging students to attend the unit if they need help learning English,” she said.


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