Sunday, March 28, 2010

Things Teachers Are Thankful For

I read this article this morning and it compelled me to jot down my thoughts on the matter. It's definitely an eye opener, envisioning that there are a lot of Malaysian teachers who are in the same boat. Some of the issues I've mentioned in my previous post were echoed in this article. It made me wonder whether our plight would be answered with a victorious outcome. Only time would tell.

On an optimistic note, I'd like to share some comic strips that are very heart warming indeed. They are drawn by David Finkle, a talented high school teacher from New York. I am his ardent fan and I have also used some of his works for my lessons. Do check out his website!

" There's a time for daring and there's a time for caution, and a wise man understands which is called for."
           ~John Keating (Robin Williams)

Monday, March 22, 2010

Quality vs Quantity

By now, I am sure you've heard of this news. As much as I applaud the Education Minister's interests towards upholding the excellence of English Language proficiency in our Malaysian classrooms, I sincerely believe that we should rationalised the issue thoroughly from myriad perspectives.  Would increasing hours of English lessons per week overcome the declining state of English Language among our students?

Frankly speaking, it's the quality that counts, not the quantity. Let's face it, teachers nowadays are too bogged down with documentation and clerical work that at times, we are gulping and gasping for breath in preparing the best lessons for our beloved students. Teaching is challenging, no joke. We would deliver the best if we are allowed to do what we know best, being a teacher. No teacher in the right mind would settle for mediocre approach towards teaching (the late Tan Sri P.Ramlee's depiction of 'hari hari cikgu main bola' might be one-in-a-million scenario)

God saves our children. *shudders*

I strongly hope that our government won't scrimp on the needs of professional development for the sake of our future generation. If we want top notch teachers, we must be willing to allow the teachers to develop their niche. I have full optimism that all the English teachers in Malaysia are willing to go the extra mile for their students. If we were to teach extra hours for our students, I am sure we are able to do so willingly if we are allowed to focus sans the interference of  extra clerical works. With the right mindset, we are able to achieve anything. As uttered by the late Martin Luther King, I have a dream and right now my dream  is to be the best teacher that I could ever be. Let us teach.

p/s: I've updated My Lit Project. Do check it out :) 

Monday, March 15, 2010

Taking a breather

Things I did for the past one week:

*Documentation & execution of MY LIT PROJECT, my latest action research project (pheww!)
*Gave a talk to the Form 5 students at SM Teknik Johor Bahru, Johor  (I had a great time, such an attentive crowd )
*Formed the committee members for the School Website Contest - english version (dateline: 31st March *cringes*)
*Built website for the School Resource Centre (in progress)
*Marked test papers (sigh..5 failures for 5KN, need to do analysis item & module to overcome this problem)
    Things I am planning to do this week:

    *Take my sons out ( park, zoo, library,beach or some nice holiday spots)
    *Catch up on my reading (check out the MPH Sale, great books up for grab!)
    *Watch Alice In Wonderland!
    *Set items for the upcoming JB's SPM midyear examination 
    *Construct writing module, targeting on 5KN weak students (a simple academic writing template that would guide them to write better)
        Have a nice holiday!

        Friday, March 5, 2010

        MY-LIT : Updates!

        MY-LIT Project, my school-based action research is up and running. Phew! It's been a painstaking process but I do hope my students would immensely benefit from my innovation. For the moment, I've updated the site with some digital notes, courtesy of the Curriculum Development Centre, Ministry of Education Malaysia. The materials are currently limited to Latif Mohidin's In the midst of hardship and Alcock's QWERTYUIOP as the focus was on my Form 4 students. Nonetheless, I'm hoping to develop more materials on other genres from time to time.

        Do check it out!

        Thursday, March 4, 2010

        MY-LIT: My Action Research Project

        I am in the midst of preparing my latest action research project for this year which revolves around the 2010 English Literature Component. Based from the feedback I've received from my colleagues, students and also my blog visitors, it is inevitable to deny the lack of information on the aforementioned subject on the Internet. Hence, I have developed  MY-LIT, a website that provides digital notes and audio-visual learning stimuli to assist students to learn more about the literary texts without the constraint of time and place. I am utilising the Web 2.0. technologies to assist me in building this innovation. This is also the topic of my paper that I shall be presenting at the upcoming 19th MELTA International Conference in June. Apart from that, I'm also building interactive modules where the students can do the exercises online and check them on their own. My objective is to provide a platform for my students to conduct autonomous learning and instead of providing some monochromatic notes, the notes and activities are jazzed up with multimedia and dynamic contents. Good news for teachers, as it provides an alternative for us to take a breather and let students do all the hard work ;)

        As it is still a pilot project, I haven't release the materials to the mass yet but I shall do it soon. For meanwhile, check out some of the materials on Slideshare.Still assessing the students' remarks and responses on MY-LIT and all I can say, it's a raving success. I'll link the site and hopefully, everyone could benefit from this humble project of mine.