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Showing posts from October, 2019

Pulai Baru: Finding Myself At SMK Katibas Again

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I left SMK Katibas in late 2015. Although I really miss SMK Katibas & the children there, I never expected to be able to return so soon after having a kid. Therefore, I was extremely grateful when MESTR wanted to involve me in a Parental & Community Engagement Program in Song, Sarawak. I was engaged to conduct a breakout session for SPM students of Song with one of their "killer" subjects, English.

The plan was a 2-in-1 program at 2 longhouses. An educational event involving students in Song at one longhouse & an official event with Dato Sri Michael Manyin involving the local community at another. The dream was to demonstrate that the rumah panjai (longhouse) could be a place of learning & encourage tuai rumah (longhouse chief) to have learning programs conducted in their ruai (common room).

Children benefit from associating reading/learning with the love, especially when parents read to them or get involved in their early learning. Also, if regular educatio…

2019 PostcardX with ASEAN Countries

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A few months ago, I was engaged as a mentor at a YSEALI regional workshop with representatives from all 11 ASEAN countries. At the end of the workshop, I had access to all of them via a WhatsApp Group. I really hate WhatsApp Groups. I realized the value of having contacts abroad & the great potential for collaboration, so I asked if anyone in the group wanted to do a postcard exchange between their classes & mine.

Working with students who have low-proficiency, low-confidence & low-interest in English is a significant challenge & I jumped at the opportunity to provide a authentic context for my students to use English & to experience first hand how this language can connect them with the world. Fortunately, I received enough affirmatives to pair every class at my school with a different ASEAN partner, specifically Brunei, Indonesia, Vietnam, Myanmar, Thailand, Philippines & Cambodia. Almost had a Timur Leste counterpart too, but she had difficulties securi…

2019 Post-PT3 English Day Activities

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Before my arrival, the different language teachers under the Language Department worked together to plan & run activities for a Post-PT3 Language Day. Many hands made light work. However, last year, I noticed that, instead of practicing their English during the English segments of the day, students would revert to BM/BIban. This reflects their low English proficiency & highlights the critical need for more practice & exposure to English.

Therefore, this year, I asked for English to have it's own day & the surprised reaction I got indicated that I was likely the only teacher to ask for more time with the post-PT3 students. Therefore, I'd like to thank my colleagues, Cikgu Gan & Cikgu Amy, for going the extra mile by leading their own segments & providing support to the students during my sessions.

Special thanks to Dr. Tamas Kiss who designed Activities 2 & 3. He is a highly qualified & cited ESL teacher-trainer who is currently in Kuching hopin…

Judge At Junior Innovate Sarawak 2019

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Honored to be involved as a judge of Junior Innovate Sarawak 2019 during the Borneo International Drobotex at the Borneo Convention Center Kuching (BCCK). We were tasked with selecting the best 3 teams to represent Sarawak at the national finals in Penang.

Students developed computer games with both hardware & software components using Adruino & a whole lot of creativity. There were bonus marks for making recycled materials a key part of the game.

What I Learned & Shared At Sarawak English Langauge Education Symposium 2019

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Pictures of idea & slides from the symposium shared by me & others. If you're teaching English in Sarawak, join us at Sarawak English Educators.

A few weeks ago, I had the privilege of participating in the 3rd Sarawak English Language Education Symposium (SELES) organized by the Ministry of Education, Science, Techonological & Research (MESTR) Sarawak in collaboration with JPN Sarawak. At last year's, I was involved as a speaker. Year after year, I've witnessed the symposium highlighting all the amazing English teachers in Sarawak & providing a platform for them to share with their peers. It was indeed a sparky moment to rekindle the flames of our battle-weary teaching spirit.
Initially, I was roped in as one of the MCs for the Opening Ceremony, so I decided to submit a workshop-proposal abstract to kill 2 birds with 1 stone. Thankfully, it was accepted! (More about it later.) When I got there, I found out that I was dropped as MC, & given a bigger role in…