Sunday, October 25, 2009

Why I Skipped Class

This is the latest book that I read. It is authored by MMU graduate, Jay Tiew Jin Jie and co-authored by Mdm. Rahayu Tasnim, my ex-office mate cum my neighbour in Muzaffar Height now.

I received the free book with the free T-shirt. Special edition hehehe...

Written using a simple english, the 91 pages book explores why students like to skip classes - something that always make most lecturers and teachers got heart attack! As I experienced last semester, after waiting more than half an hour, less than half of the class turned-up. The cliche reason was - friday morning class, overslept, insomnia, back to hometown or no reason at all. And as the cosequence my barring list was the longest ones in the faculty. And another consequence is my teaching evaluation was very bad. The worst after being a lecturer more than 6 years! that is the reward for being strict and cruel lecturer... for the sake of education.

However, reading this book gives me another perspective. Something that actually I know but can't really accept it when I wear the lecturer's hat.

The author wrote in one of the chapters:

" Now, I started skipping school since I was in high school. The logic is simple. Since the main reason to go to school is to get good results in exam, I stayed at home to study for my exam".
(That's true. Last semester, out of 200++ students in my lecture, less than 30 students appeared and I the class have to be cancelled. Giving my students space to study for their midterm that night. The students thanked me for being generous and understanding - is that what I want? Do they really score the paper?).

I like the part when the author points out this:

" we would like to point out that every individual is gifted in different ways. Do you know anyone in your class who is the academic genius but is a below average athlete or sings like a frog?"

And also this part - Are teachers to be blamed?

"Now, should we start blaming teachers for not using more interesting teaching methods? my answer is no. Teachers are trained in teachers training college to teach, set exam questions and grade students in the way the system wants them to".

" In fact, parents are constantly demanding for better results from their child. They ask teachers to produce straight A's students. ...."

Lets read the book. The unique part of this book is, it is written from two perspectives - from student's perspective and from an educator's perspective. The common thing about both of them is - they skipped classes when they were a student!!

The price is only RM18. You can visit for more info or if you want to order you can inform me from this blog.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Counting days...

Less than two months - baby akan menjenguk dunia.

Ayah dah sangat-sangat tak sabar. Bila balik dia mesti akan tanya " bila baby nak keluar ni?"
Bila ibu rasa lain macam sikit... pening ke, sakit pinggang ke, kaki cramp ker.. dia mesti akan kata " jangan-jangan baby dah nak keluar tak?"
Ibu kata " Ish..jangan dulu, kita tak ready lagi".
Ayah kata " tak sabar nak cuti ni.."
Ibu kata... " tunggulah nenek datang stay dengan kita. Kita mana nak reti benda-benda macam ni"
Bilala.. nenek dengan atuk nak stay melaka ni.

Lagipun ibu belum beli lagi beberapa barang. Stroller, car seat, bouncer. Sebabnya, tunggu ayah balik baru boleh nak gi beli. Ibu tak larat la nak shopping benda-benda berat ni sorang-sorang. Ayah pulak dah start kelas master, kadang-kadang dia boleh balik sekejap jer, jadi tak sempat nak kemana-mana. Lagipun kesian dia travel sana-sini.. bagilah dia rest bila balik Melaka.

Makin dekat harinya, ibu rasa ibu makin busy pula. Banyak kerja yang perlu diselesaikan. Taknakla nanti menyusahkan kawan-kawan ibu kat office. Taknak juga bos-bos kacau masa ibu berpantang nanti. Untuk phd ibu pulak.. at least bagila ibu achieve something sebelum bercuti panjang. Sekurang-kurangnya, adalah progress. Jadi, ibu pulun la buat semua kerja, sampai tak ada masa nak cuti balik ke KL masa semester break hari tu. Tapi yang bestnya, ada juga kerja-kerja yang ibu boleh buat kat rumah jer. Ibu pun dah tak larat sangat nak pandu kereta... perut dah melekat kat stering dah....

Sekarang ni... ibu risau juga, kot-kot baby nak keluar awal dari jangkaan. ibu target paling awal baby keluar raya haji nanti. So, maybe akan sama dgn ayah atau ibu. Ayah lahir 10 zulhijjah, Ibu pulak 12 zulhijjah - sama-sama hari tasyrik. Kot-kot la baby nak keluar hari tasyrik juga. Tapi kalau ikut due date Dr. akan lahir masa 1st anniversary ayah ngan ibu. 13 disember. Mana-mana pun ibu ok.....

So, ibu dah pun buat beberapa persiapan.. memandangkan ibu stay seorang diri kat rumah ni. Ada beberapa perkara penting yang ibu akan pastikan:

1. Ibu duplicate kunci rumah bagi kat auntie ayu (office mate merangkap jiran terdekat). Kot-kot emergency takkan dia nak pecah rumah kan?
2. Ibu pastikan handphone sentiasa ada bateri. Kalau tinggal 2 bar je, cepat-cepat charge.
3. Kunci rumah, kunci kereta sentiasa ada dekat-dekat ibu especially masa ibu tidur. Mesti boleh dicapai dengan tangan. Taklah terkial-kial mencari nanti.
4. Ibu akan test beberapa kali.. call ayah tengah-tengah malam. saja nak check dia boleh bangun tak kalau ibu buat emergency call malam-malam buta. Kalau tak..ibu kena fikirkan alternatif lain. Kawan-kawan ayah... silalah bersedia juga ya.
5. Set speed dialing untuk nombor-nombor penting.
6. Beg untuk bergegas ke hospital pun dah ibu siapkan...

So, kawan-kawan kalau nak tambah cheklist ni..silakanlah. Manalah tau ada yang terlepas pandang...

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Exam week... bla..bla..bla...

Exam week is finally over. Now we have two weeks break. Doesn't mean anything for me. Given a big group which the exam scheduled at the end of the 2nd week of exam period, it means no semester break for me. Unluckily, Dr. Paul is the coordinator. He marked all his papers in 3 days and pushing us to submit asap. That's unfair! my group is the biggest one. Others have around 170++ scripts but mine is more than 200. I wonder why students like to register into my class.
"I'm a killer lecturer lar... my dear students, can you forward this message to your juniors so that not so many people will be joining my section next semester. Believe me... my average this semester is the lowest one... as compared to Mr. Goh, Mr. Senthil and even Dr. Paul".

Exam week gives me colurful experiences as there were few incidents happened:

Incident 1 - I was invigilating and starting to collect attendance sheet from the last row. The exam has started for about 5 minutes. One student came to me and asked me to go to the toilet.
"Maam... may I know where is the bathroom?"
" Erm... bathroom? no bathrooom here... but if you mean toilet, it is at the back, my right hand side".
I was not very sure whether students can leave the hall within the first 30 minutes or not.
"Can I go to the toilet?" I looked at him, start thinking whether to let him go or not and finally said.. "yes, you can but you have to leave your handphone with me" (after I saw his pocket and found that his handphone is in his pocket).
Actually I want to ask him to empty his pocket but I don't want to be so cruel to him. He took his handphone out from his pocket and said
"actually maam, I already switched it off".
"Never mind, just give it to me, and collect it back later. I'll hold it while you are in the toilet".
He still refused to give his handphone and I know a few invigilators already looked at me suspiciously. He tried to convinced me that he already switched off his phone then I said:
"stop arguing with me, i'm not going to do anything with this expensive handphone, i'll return it back to you".
Finally, he let me to hold his phone and few minutes after that... the phone vibrates... (how come a phone that already switched off can vibrates?) and on the screen appears:
"From m3abady: Business Development Stages.... answer" I checked the question paper....and... hahaha....i know you know..

Incident 2 - I received an email.
Madam, can I see you by today because tomorrow i'm going back to my country.
I replied:
Sure... come and see me at 2.30pm.
I reached office at 11.30am and coincidently met that student at the cafetaria.
"Madam, I mailed you this morning".
"Oh, ok.... you may come to my office now".
In my office, I asked him.
"So, you are leaving tomorrow? back to your country?"
"No madam... we have only two weeks break, no point going back, wasting time and money".
"Erm... but you said that....erm.. never mind".

Incident 3 - Another email reached my mailbox.
I'm sorry for disturbing you madam. I'm now in my country. I hope that you can increase my assignment mark so that I can pass your paper. I worked hard for that madam. Please pass me because my father will not allow me to go back to study if my CGPA drop this semester. I almost reply that email - I hope you will never come back!.
I also coincidently saw this guy in campus. Maybe his father already let him back to Malaysia to continue his student life....

Incident 4 - 60 MCQs and one case study. I have two papers with the following answer for all case study questions.
Question 1:
P3 - L1
P4 - L6-L7
P7 - L4-L5
(notes: P = paragraph, L = Line) - please refer to the case study.

"Is writing the answers in the space provided very hard for you? I'm sorry, i never marked my own case study.. I only mark answers written in the space given".
(if I can send this message to this two culprits).

Me = warrrghhhhhhhhhhhh!!! I want a break!!!!