Saturday, January 21

A Response to Royce Tan's "Maglish getting more mangled"

This is a response to "Manglish getting more mangled" by Royce Tan published in The Star on 21 January 2017.
    
"Manglish getting more mangled" is one of those clickbait articles that makes my blood boil because it does not propose any kind of solution nor inspire any kind of action. Basically, it's a shame piece. Just the read the Facebook comments on this piece. You love that thick decadent slice of schadenfreude, don't you?

How about a nice slap of reality? Articles like these exacerbate & legitimize our society's shaming of people with less than purrfect English. Honestly, Malaysians, if you really want English in Malaysia to improve, THIS KIND OF SHAMING HAS GOT TO STOP!

If you're wondering what I'm ranting on about, here's an excerpt from the article.
“Before you cross the strict, use your ase”.
Understand that? Not likely, because even Manglish is getting mangled in Malaysia.
In case you’re wondering what the sentence means, it was a student wanting to say: “Before you cross the street, use your eyes.”
There are other examples.
“The school are so many teacher and friend. I can read the book in this school.”
“We in deed very conscent of student safety...” and “It is beyond our limit as it held at outside of campus”.
The last two were excerpts from a press release from the student representative council of a local university.
If local universities are that bad, one can figure that sentences churned out by secondary school students have left volunteer teachers horrified.

What do you think will happen when students read this article & see sentences that very much resemble those of their own being publicly ridiculed in a national newspaper? Worse still, what if they come across it on Facebook & read the comments?

I didn't really bother me much when we (Yes, WE need to take collective responsibility for our society's insatiable desire for blood.) English-shamed our deputy prime minister & our award-winning footballer. While the haters were hating, the minister & the footballer were laughing all the way to the bank. But, when you start targeting our students for shame, you're looking for trouble. It really manifests the keyboard warrior in me. Now, watch me dissect & critique this article.

Saturday, December 31

My Birthday Wish: Give RM31 (USD7) To Aid A Burnt-Down School In My Hometown

I'm a firm believer in walking my talk. I've done it. Now, it's your turn.
Please, as a birthday gift to me, give RM31 to aid a school in my hometown which burnt down recently.
  
Since my 30th birthday, I've asked everyone I know to contribute to a cause I believe in, instead of giving me birthday presents. As they spam my Facebook wall with birthday wishes, I send them my humble requests.

Last year, I asked for RM30 for Teach For Malaysia.
This year, I'm 31. So, I'm asking you to give RM31 (USD7) to aid a burnt-down school, SMK St Teresa, in my hometown, Kuching.

What is RM31 (USD7) to you? That's one trip to a fancy cafe, like Starbucks. School reopens tomorrow. Go without Starbucks for a week & give the children going to this public school something to smile about. RM31 for SMK St Teresa. Your kind contributions are much appreciated!

Thursday, November 17

An Open-Letter To Parents After The 2016 UPSR Results


Dear parents,
As a government school teacher, I know that your children are worth more than a mere letter grade on a flimsy piece of paper. Like any kind of measurement tool, there are limitations to the generalizability of our exam results. The truth is our paper tests are only able to measure a very narrow aspect of your child’s overall intelligence. Usually, what is measured is their verbal linguistic intelligence (the ability to express oneself through language). There are plenty of other intelligences that are not measured or addressed by the UPSR.

Let’s not forget the influence of test-taking skills, like the consideration for what the examiner is looking for & the consideration of all 4 options of a multiple-choice before selecting the best one. Young children and test-takers with low language proficiency tend to lack these skills. This is why schools drill your children with model exam questions. Drilling is a tried and true method for the implicit acquisition and operational knowledge of test-taking skills.

Test-taking skills greatly modulate the results of an exam. Ever wondered why we have the curious phenomena of straight A students who are incapable of forming grammatical sentences in English or performing basic arithmetic in real-life situations? They have been perfectly trained to apply this knowledge in exam conditions, which does not naturally translate into being able to apply the same knowledge in real-life.

If exams are such poor measures of a person’s capabilities, is there a place for exams in our world?

Thursday, September 29

Webinar: What I Learned about Education Disparity on a Train Across the USA

Look at me waving my jedi hand at the attendees.
This was my first webinar ever! **gasp** **wipes tears**
Note to self: Get a HD webcam for future webinars. Get a haircut too.
    
In a nutshell, I talked about:
1) My train journey across the US. 2) What I learned. 3) How the topic relates to Malaysia.

As promised, here's a recording of the webinar:
 
Feel free to use the Discus board below if you have any questions!

Here are the sides I used:

Monday, September 19

Vote Jarod Yong For International Student Senator

Students of Teachers College, click here to vote!
Voting Period - September 19-22, 2016
   
I am competing with 10 other people for International Student Senator of the Student Senate of Teachers College, Columbia University. I've read all the entries & found that everyone is a true contender with something unique to bring to the table.

Honestly, I'm no politician & you don't have to vote for me. I just want you to participate in students politics (after all, you're funding this through your school fees) & vote for whoever you think will be a great students representative & be able to inclusively synergise with the greater TC community to enhance the TC experience for everyone, regardless of whether one's international or domestic.

If you are so inclined, vote for me here & help tip the odds in my favour by sharing this with your friends on social media. Once I am in office, I will do my best to truly represent & unite the students of TC.

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