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Hi, everyone! I have finally managed to write something. I hope 2017 will bring many great things for all of us!
-TM, 2nd February 2017

Saturday, July 27, 2013

How to Teach Young Children to Write a Simple Five-Line Poem

(skema giler tajuk, by the way)

I learnt this during a course I went to in KL. To cut things short, here is a simple way of teaching young children to create their own poems.

This method will create a five-line poem. Make sure your pupils have the basic on adjectives, nouns and verbs in the continuous tense. In order to be able to execute this well in class, you should try this out first.

First line
Write an adjective and your name. It is even better if the adjective starts with the same letter as your name.
For example: Super Sumaiyyah

Second line
Write two verbs in the continuous tense which describe the things that you like to do.
For example: Baking, reading

Third line
Write three things that you dislike. You can start off by writing just one word for each thing (a noun). Later, you can ask your pupils to write two words for each thing.
Example 1: smells, vegetables, worms
Example 2: funny smells, bitter vegetables, slimy worms

Fourth line
Write a four word sentence that describes yourself.
Example: I don't eat much.

Fifth line
Rewrite the first line of your poem.

And this is what you will get:

Super Sumaiyyah
Baking, reading
Funny smells, bitter vegetables, slimy worms
I don't eat much
Super Sumaiyyah.

Isn't it super easy and simple? I can't wait to try this out (yeah, I haven't). If you try this out, do share!

Selamat Berbuka for those of you who are fasting!


Friday, July 26, 2013

KSSR Listening & Speaking : Match-up Numbering

   I used to rather dislike teaching Listening & Speaking. For one, my first experience of teaching KSSR involved 2 Delima and boy what a time I had! From what I understand, in a L&S class you focus on teaching your children how to actually use the language in spoken form. This was not the easiest thing to achieve with 2D as they were more interested in copying (if they were interested in the lesson at all) and creating hoavoc in the class rather than actually sit down to listen and speak in English. Don't get me wrong, I learned a lot of things from teaching them but it was NOT easy.

   This year I was given the responsibility to teach one of the Year 3 classes, 3 Zamrud. At first it was not that easy either- they were much brighter and rather more disciplined (I say rather because there are quite a handful of monkeys there too! Naughty things!) and I was still unsure of how I was supposed to conduct a good listening and speaking lesson. For one, would they be interested in doing activities which does not involve any writing at all in one class? Of course you can include some written activities in an L&S class but they should not be the main focus.

   How was I to teach them to speak the language and understand it? These are kampung children, mind you. Even the children whose parents are teachers watch Spongebob in Malay. (Rolls eyes in desperation). Seriously, watch Upin and Ipin in Malay as much as you like but cartoons with English audio should be viewed as so! Haiya how on earth are you going to improve your English ah! The only thing they keep saying is "Oh My English!" every time I speak more than a few sentences in English.

   Then, as Emily of Newmoon would say, I got The Flash. A flash of inspiration. A simple but practical idea. My children love love love games and they are rather used to starting a class with a simple game. Every morning when I walk into class that's all they think about. "What game are we playing today? So came the The Flash.

   The idea of this game (if you can call it a game) is to get children to partner up randomly and talk to each other using the dialogue or sentence structure given. Follow the steps below:

The Match-up Numbering Game

1. Teach the children a set of sentence structures according to you topic. For example:

Unit 10: A Ride in the Safari Park

Question: What animal is this?
Answer: This is a _______________.

Question: Where can you find it?
Answer: You can find it _______________.

2. Give each child one number.
   Let's say there are 28 children in your class. Start a child off to say '1' and the others should follow suit.

3. Write the numbers on the board.
   If there are 28 children, write 1,2,3,4 and so on up to 28.

4. Explain the rules.
   The teacher will call out two numbers. The first number will ask the questions and the second number will provide the answers.

5. Have a try-out round. Call out two numbers so that the children can see how the game is played. The first number to be called will ask the questions and the second number will provide the answers.

6. Always cross out the numbers you have called out. Make sure you call out random numbers so that it will be more interesting. My children found this part fun because they could not expect the person they would be partnered up with.

And that's it! Super easy and when I think about it, not that brilliant. But it helps to keep my children in focus and they love it. At first it was awkward for some of them and I got so frustrated because one or two just would not open their mouths. But now they're used to it and we have a lot of fun in our L&S lesson. I need to get more Flashes so that we don't get bored of this game. Haha.

To my Muslim friends and readers, I hope you are spending your Ramadhan productively, in syaa Allah. Take care!

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Happy Ramadhan!

   I'm late! Again. Haha. Let me say it anyway- Have a blessed Ramadhan everyone! This month is the time to train ourselves to be better Muslims and individuals. If you are a Muslim, fasting, performing your prayers (both fareedah and sunnah), giving sadaqah... all those things have to be given extra work and effort! Ramadhan is our training ground. It will help prepare us for what we need to face after Ramadhan in syaa Allah.

   This year marks my second year as a working lady (ewahh kelas gitu bunyi). I am getting more and more work and tasks at school, and it doesn't help that I feel so exhausted and tired all the time. Sometimes I get frustrated because I get caught up with so much clerical work that my pupils are left to fend for themselves. It truly irritates and frustrates me.

   To be honest, I was afraid that when Ramadhan came, I would feel even more burdened. Normally, I always get hungry all the time as I spend most of it running here and there, from my classes to the office to the staff room, upstairs and downstairs, from one building to another. I would feel drained so if I have time I will run to the canteen or at least suck on a lollipop (of which I have an endless stock- my pupils make sure of that!). I wondered how I would get through Ramadhan without eating or drinking anything throughout the day.

   Allah truly knows best. I have never felt as strong and energetic as I have during these past seven days. Now that the Mid-Year Exam is over and done with, we have started using a new timetable (Jadual Anjal). We have also split the Year 6 classes from two into three groups. This means more teaching periods, which sums up to around 34 periods for me per week. I know that for some people this is normal but at my school the normal teaching periods per week is 25. Added to that are tuition classes, endless filing and clerical work, helping a teacher with his or her course assignments (doing it for them actually -_-) and so on. You name it. Sometimes I have so much work to do that I feel my head would explode. Sometimes I get so bewildered that I would just sit down and stare at all the mess on my table. Sometimes I just don't know what I should start working on.

   What worried me the most is that all this additional work would take away my focus away from my real job- to teach my pupils. Alhamdulillah. Allah has granted me the strength and energy, so far, to still be able to plan my lessons and teach in class. I used to get a bit tardy sometimes. I'd go into my classes without a single plan in my head and just teach spontaneously. I notice that the past seven days of fasting has helped me to be more serious in planning my work. It helps that we get up so early for sahur. I now set off for school at 6.00 a.m. so that I'll arrive at school at around 6.45 a.m. I have early morning classes with my Year 6 pupils. After school I'll continue with tuition classes, twice a week during school days and probably once during the weekend.

   Today, for instance, I had to teach for eight periods. Just imagine. We only have ten periods per day. I only had two periods to sit and do other work. When I entered my last English class, I thought I would collapse. But I didn't. To my surprise my voice has grown stronger (if you read my posts on my first year of posting you would understand how much this means to me) and I can still jump around and have fun with my children. Ma syaa Allah. The power of fasting. The beauty of Ramadhan. Allah truly knows what he has in store for us in this blessed Ramadhan.

   So dear friends. Take the opportunity to be even more productive this month. If you ever need any ideas or tips to plan better and become more productive especially during Ramadhan, do visit It's a wonderful, wonderful website. On that note, I must end here. Sorry if it all sounds rather abrupt. I wish you a happy and blessed Ramadhan. In syaa Allah, let us be become better Muslims, people and teachers throughout this training process. Take care!


Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Common Mistakes We Make In Using English

Happy Ramadhan everyone! I haven't posted anything for a long, long time so I thought I'd share this with you:

Red : Wrong
Black : Right

It's tail is long.
Its tail is long.

Look at the elephant's trunks.
Look at the elephants' trunks.

I and you are friends.
You and I are friends.

A also can help.
I can also help.

Chase after him.
Chase him.

Return back quickly.
Return quickly.

It's 10.00 p.m. at night.
It's 10.00 p.m.

Its price is cheaper.
It's cheap.

The reason was because...
The reason was that...

I don't think so you're fat.
I don;t think you're fat.

Though I'm small but I'm strong.
Though I'm small, I'm strong.

I'm angry at you.
I'm angry with you.

I prefer hockey than football.
I prefer hockey to football.

I'm interested to join the club.
I'm interested in joining the club.

I look forward to see you.
I look forward to seeing you.

We have lots of homeworks.
We have lots of homework.

This bouquet of roses are lovely.
This bouquet of roses is lovely.

Maths are fun.
Maths is fun.

One of the boy is here.
One of the boys is here.

Every match are exciting.
Every match is exciting.

Nothing scare me.
Nothing scares me.

Make less mistakes.
Make fewer mistakes.

Either he or she are right.
Either he or she is right.

I'm a ten-years-old girl.
I'm a ten-year-old girl.

Last year he can dive well.
Last year he could dive well.

I wish I can fly.
I wish I could fly.

It's time we go home.
It's time we went home.

You made me laughed.
You made me laugh.

I'll tell you when I 'll see you.
I'll tell you when I see you.

You're Lin, isn't it?
You're Lin, aren't you?

Please on the computer.
Please switch on the computer.

Last two weeks, I won a prize.
Two weeks ago, I won a prize.

He's my cousin brother.
He's my cousin.

We'll send you to the airport.
We'll take you to the airport.

I'll follow you to the concert.
I'll go with you to the concert.

You did good in the test.
You did well in the test.

The kids are singing.
The children are singing. (This one may be a difference between American and British English)