Tuesday, July 2, 2013


I have no problem teaching both PMR and SPM students. Though sometimes, being a mortal, my brain sometimes does this trick when it switches PMR stuff with SPM stuff. Teaching according to the syllabus and marking exam papers with different schematic answer, though challenging but manageable at times.

What I don’t like is the meetings that I have to endure for both PMR and SPM levels. These meetings lasted longer than Spielberg’s movie. And usually I am the first one to arrive to these meetings but the last one to reach home as it took an hour drive from work to home.

If you are a teacher, you are familiar with post-mortem meetings to analyze why these kids got A but these kids failed. If you are an English teacher, you are very familiar with those reproachful stares and tsk tsking of the mouths when the whole meeting room analyze the results for your particular subject. If you are an English teacher, teaching in a rural area where no amount of creative TESL teaching skills that were imbedded in you cannot help you to magically create an A students (PMR and SPM levels) who manage to fail every single English exam that they ever took for their entire life.

Sometimes you wonder, what’s inside their brain? Shit? What made these kids unable to fathom any single word in English despite the fact that they have been learning the nook and crook of English since they were in kindergarten (singing nursery rhymes and learning ABC).

These meetings although should be useful however are very dragging especially if the chairman is not an English person or TESLians. Us TESLians, speak very directly, thus all English Panel meetings are done within 45 minutes, tops, regardless of how many agendas in the call letter (I know since I have been the secretary for the English Panel ever since I got posted; apparently typing the minute of the meeting using my laptop as the meeting is going on is a big deal). TESLians (who are blue-eyed and blondes, NOT) are usually talented in giving the short version of complicated matters, hence making our meetings not only enjoyable but a soul-sharing session (if you are surrounded with awesome English teachers as your colleagues as I do in school).

Not the case with meetings with the general population. Some people enjoy basking in the limelight and tend to talk gibberish and longer than necessary when being asked about the results of their subject. Mr/Mrs/Ms Know-It-All always linger before giving much needed important points of their report of their students’ achievement. I bet they failed at summary writing back in their school days.

There are also those who seemed to put others at the pointy end of blame when their subjects did not reach the target. The kids are brats, the classrooms are not conducive, the fans and lights in the classrooms are not working, yadayadayada...on and on it goes. 

As for me, I usually have my tab handy or my laptop, enjoying the Internet connection at the school since TM is shit and the Streamyx at my home is not working for like weeks. And when I complained to TM Point, this arse thought that I had no business doing here and purposely went there for fun. And there I go getting of topic again.

Sure, I looked like a disrespectful person as I buried myself in other things while other people are yapping away in the meeting, analyzing why the kids don’t just get all A’s. For me, in the words of my colleague who quoted from his brother and sister in law who happens to be a counsellor, if all kids get straight A’s, who would clean the toilets, fix the roads, pick up the garbage and other important jobs that others would not do. These kids, though not academically inclined, can be helpful members of the society if they were given opportunities to do something that they are good at. Not everybody is the apple of their parents’ eyes. Not everybody understands the purpose of them being in school. When I was in school and in the upper form, was in the Science Stream, I didn’t understand the science subjects that I was learning and it was such a frustration. God loves me and He gave me a good SPM result that was both a relieve for both my parents and I. And He loves me when He got me enrolled in TESL programme, learning English, a subject that I considered my saviour during my confusion era back in school. I excelled during my first and second degree because finally I found a purpose in studying and when my friends complained about the burden of reading notes or the tedious chore of reading literary texts, I shrugged it off and was mistaken for a stuck up bitch who tried to get on the lecturers’ good side for handing in my assignments extra early and doing extra reading on English subjects back in uni. And when my friends went out to reward and enjoy themselves after all the hard work studying and completing assignments by going out for lunch or watching movies or shopping, I was tucked away in my hostel room as I was saving up to buy a laptop and later, a scooter (during my first degree). And for that I was branded an anti-social (one of my course mates christened me as an anti-social in his blog) and everybody dispersed like ants being showered with water. During my second degree (part time programme since I hold a full time job) which I have just finished last April (keeping my fingers crossed for graduation in October), some of my course mates went on a holiday after a semester has ended, but my life just went back to normal, woke up at 6 in the morning to go to work and came back at ungodly hours depending on what happened at school. Why? Because for me, studying is a reward in itself. Sure, it is stressful at times, what’s with the depressed situation I was in. I wasn’t exactly Miss Popular and life was hard, I thought about suicides a lot during my first degree, what’s with being alone with no friends that I have driven away because I was too preoccupied with my relationshit with a psychopath (I came to this conclusion after watching a documentary on serial killers, saying that 1 in every 100 people is a psychopath and some of the characteristics of these psychopath is charming, manipulative and lack conscience, thus effortlessly lie their way through life and this sounds a lot like my ex). During my second degree, the same thing happened, there was this one person who hated my guts, probably because I was as straight as an arrow (never cheated in exams) and this person who did the opposite in almost every exam clashed where our morale is concerned. Nobody likes me, for sure. And it they were given a chance, being with me at a close range would be the last thing that they opt for. Maybe it is because I drive people away because I am a disagreeable person most of the times and I said it more than once, that I don’t need anybody in my life but according to psychology 101, those who said they never needed something are usually the ones who really need it.

Wow, how a ranting session about long meetings can turn out to be a reflection on my less than pristine life. Watching documentary on serial killers can really make you think out of the box. Sometimes beyond that imaginary box. No wonder they say serial killers are wired differently.

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