Monday, 30 November 2015

Most memorable moment, the MTCP Programme-IAB 2015

Hi. It has been ages I have not been updating my journey. I have taken a new post since February 2014. A post that is rather challenging and at the same time gives me the satisfaction. Due to that new post, I have been busy lately and unable to update anything...

15th-27thNovember 2015 has changed all that and I could not help to start writing my journey...sharing my experiences. I have been in the teaching field for 22 years. This was my first time attended an International Training Course(it was held in Kuching though but still INTERNATIONAL okay...hehehe). Made new friends from ASEAN countries such as Philipines, Laos, Cambodia, Mynmar, Vietnam and Indonesia.  I, however have been following INTERNATIONAL events twice. First time as a presenter for the Melta Conference Teacher Showcase.

Here it goes...my memorable journey. It all started when I received a call from IAB, informing me that I have to attend MTCP(Malaysian Technical Cooperation Programme) 2015: 21st Century Leadership for Educational Leaders of Rural and Indigenous Schools from ASEAN Member States in Kuching, Sarawak for two weeks. The caller was Caroline, from IAB sarawak. She managed to call me at 10pm on Friday. Asking for my e-mail account to enable her to e-mail me my air ticket. At first I was reluctant to go as it was such a short notice. Imagine that IAB called me on Friday night to get my personal info, Saturday received my air ticket via e-mail and Sunday I took a flight to Kuching.

I took the 3.30pm flight to Miri from Lawas. Met Saiful, Mr Markus and Hj Jaffri at Miri airport. An hour before we boarde the plane, I got a call from Lily. She told me that the training would not be in Merdeka Palace as planned. The venue has changed to IAB Santubong. The four of us boarded the 7pm flight to Kuching with mixed-feeling. We reached Kuching about 9pm. The flight was bumpy all the way. It was showering when we landed in Kuching. We took a taxi to IAB, Santubong and it seemed gaes for us to reach IAB Santubong. We were practically drenched when we got out of the taxi. After we have registered for our rooms, we dragged our luggage with the help of the IAB staffs. At least it lightened our burdens and grudges after being informed that we have to stay in IAB instead of Merdeka Palace...hehehe. Thank you Hairol for the help and the hospitality that night. Thank you for the band aid too. I shared an apartment with Lily, who was also my TESL coursemate in UNIMAS. We slept soundly that night which I usually don't on the first day. Later we were informed that we have to move to Merdeka Palace at about 9pm. Thanks Hjh Serina, Mr Gerald, the Ministry of Foreign affairs and IAB Sarawak especially Beatrice for working hard to make sure we have a comfortable place to stay for 2 weeks.

For that two weeks, I have made friends with everybody. I met many interesting and important people from ASEAN countries. Getting to know our ASEAN friends Nay Min Aye, Chau, Jehane, Jonaid, Leav Ora, Souk, Ly Keang, Ye Myint Than,  Kaygyosone, Dr Hanna and Samer. Not forgotten our Malaysian participants too...it is a pleasure knowing you Mr Marcus, a wise and humble man. Mr K.Mutharasu, who is such a cool guy and will jog every morning at Dataran Merdeka without fail. Dennis, our 'Penghulu' who is always full of ideas on what to say. Same goes to our witty Ms Jalilah. Thanks kak Ramsi for the 'story-mory' and Janet for the car ride. I would not leave you out Clare...hehehe. Thanks for the car ride  and for accompanying me to the Dentist on the third day of our training...hehehe. Did I leave anyone out? Oh yeah...Hj Jaffri, my dancing partner. Saiful, our dancing instructor and thanks Cg Edward for the gift. Dr Fareeda, nice knowing you. Hj Edmund,  whom I knew when I was still teaching in SMK Semerah Padi and that time he was teaching in SMK Openg. Teena Chang, it is great knowing you. You are such a humble and friendly young lady, who has the look and height(a compliment okay...hehehe). Dr Hanna or known as Pak Hanna by most us, thanks for the gift. Thank you everyone for the gifts that each of you brought from your respective countries.

Within that two weeks, we seemed to tango very well. We became one big family despite our differences in culture and belief. The bond that we have are special and it will be treasured forever. I could not resist writing about a young man from Mindanao, Philipines. He is an interesting young man from Philipines. His ideas always amazed me since the very first day of the Training Course. As I got to know more about him and his people, my interest deepens. He has changed my perspective and views of the world around me. Since then, I have considered him as my little brother(since I don't have any...hehehe). Thanks little brother Samer for that. It is a great pleasure knowing you...

There are so many things that I wanted to write and tell...but let the pictures tell you everything.



The last day of the Training Course was the hardest moment and the farewell at the airport was the hardest too...Could not help crying no matter how hard I tried not too. Seeing Souk from Laos cried and I also cried...

Bon voyage little brother Samer...Insyallah, we will meet one day in the future.

Well...What have I learnt from the training course? I learnt a LOT. There were new and beneficial information shared from our ASEAN friends. There are similarities and differences. My conclusion is...in order to change the mind set, it must come from the individual herself or himself. No matter how good are the teachers, the education system and also the infrastructure...if you are not able to change their mind set...it would not work...bear this in mind the importance of local wisdom.

Psst..Sorry for any spelling error

Monday, 31 March 2014

i-THINK in the classroom


Wednesday, 27 November 2013


Common Errors in English Usage!!! The definition of errors can be very complicated and controversial, hence I will not elaborate on this technical term. Rather, I am more concerned with some usual deviations from the standard use of English, especially by ESL students. In this part, we’re looking at the errors in word usage.

When you hear about something in advance, you get notice or information ahead of time. Advance also means to move forward or to make progress. Advance can also function as adjective, as in the case of “an advance payment”, which means payment made ahead of time/before hand.
When you say something is advanced, it means “complex or sophisticated” and should not be confused with the past tense form of “advance”.

Note: We often see advertisements use “Advance Level”, which should be “Advanced Level”.

A, B and C are called letters of the alphabet, NOT alphabets. Alphabet is a character set that includes letters and is used to write a language.

When “awhile” is spelled as a single word, it is an adverb meaning “for a time” (“stay awhile”); but when “while” is the object of a prepositional phrase, like “Lend me your monkey wrench for a while” the “while” must be separated from the “a.” (But if the preposition “for” were lacking in this sentence, “awhile” could be used in this way: “Lend me your monkey wrench awhile.”)

To “back up” is an activity; “back up your computer regularly”; “back up the truck to the garden plot and unload the compost.”
A “backup” is a thing: “keep your backup copies in a safe place.” Other examples: a traffic backup, sewage backup, backup plan, backup forces.

Most of the time the word people intend is “compliment”: nice things said about someone or praise.
Complement, on the other hands, means supplement each other or making something complete.

e.g. vs. i.e.
“e.g.” is the short form for exempli gratia, and means “for example”. “i.e.” is the short form for id est, and means “that is”. Use “e.g.” when you want to give an example (or several examples) of something just mentioned. Use “i.e.” when you wish to explain briefly or to clarify what you just said, or say the same thing in other words.

Mexico Hat for tea anyone???

FYI, we used to eat this and most of us know it as 'Kuih Penyaram' in Malay. In English, it is known as MEXICO HAT...


Most Malaysians know that JAMBU BATU is Guava in English. But how many of us know JAMBU AIR in English???
Add caption


In English, this fruit is called the Rose Apple, or was known in the U.S. market as champoo, referred to as the most interesting exotic fruits in the world. According to the tongue of the Caucasians, this fruit has the smell and taste like roses. The fruit is hard to come by in Europe and America because of rapid deterioration. It is also known as wax apple, Water apple, bell fruit, water cherry, watery rose apple.

Have you ever wonder the name of certain Malaysian fruits and food found in English???

You might be wondering the name of this fruit in English???

This is 'buah salak', scientifically known as salacca zalacca, or SNAKESKIN FRUIT in English. It’s a fruit native to Malaysia and Indonesia, closely resembling the size and shape of a fig…but — as its name suggests — with a skin like that of a snake.

Don’t be scared of its reptile-like outer covering. Just break off the top portion of the fruit and the skin will tear apart quite easily, revealing the garlic-like cloves inside.

Sunday, 13 October 2013

Are Still Playing Your Flute: Form 5 Poem

Are You Still Playing Flute?

The Original Version of the Poem (Malay Version)

Masihkah Kau Bermain Seruling oleh Zurinah Hassan

Masihkah kau bermain seruling
walau waktu telah terlewat untuk kita bercinta
aku semakin terasa bersalah
melayani godaan irama
lagu yang tersimpan pada lorong halus buluh
dikeluarkan oleh nafas seniman
diukir oleh bibir
diatur oleh jari
dilayangkan oleh alun angin
menolak ke dasar rasa.

Masihkah kau bermain seruling
ketika kampung semakin sunyi
sawah telah uzur
waktu jadi terlalu mahal
untuk memerhatikan hujan turun
merenung jalur senja
mengutip manik embun
menghidu harum bunga.

Masihkah kau bermain seruling
ketika aku terasa mata bersalah
untuk melayani rasa rindu padamu
di kota yang semakin kusut dan tenat
adik-adikku menganggur dan sakit jiwa
bangsaku dipecahkan oleh politik
saudara diserang bom-bom ganas
dunia sudah terlalu tua dan parah.

Di sinilah berakhirnya percintaan kita
kerana zaman sedang menuntut para seniman
hidup di luar dirinya.


Date / Place of birth : 13 June 1949, Alor Setar Kedah.
Permanent address : No.2, Jalan Pinggir, 8/1L, Seksyen 8, 40000 Shah Alam since 1974.
Academic Qualifications : B.A.Hons (Universiti Sains Malaysia), M.A. (Universiti Putra Malaysia). Doktor Falsafah, Akademi Pengajian Melayu, Universiti Malaya.
Awards :
Anugerah Penulisan Asia Tenggara (S.E.A. Write Award) 2004
Book Category Award
i- Pujangga Tidak Bernama, Hadiah Sastera Perdana(1994/1995)

ii- Memoir Zurinah Hassan Menjejak Puisi, Hadiah Buku Perpustakaan Negara 2002/2004)
iii- Memoir Zurinah Hassan Menjejak Puisi , Hadiah Sastera Perdana 2002/2003.

Are You Still Playing Your Flute? by Zurinah Hassan   (English Version)

Are you still playing your flute?
When there is hardly time for our love
I am feeling guilty
To be longing for your song
The melody concealed in the slim hollow of the bamboo
Uncovered by the breath of an artist
Composed by his fingers
Blown by the wind
To the depth of my heart.

Are you still playing your flute?
In the village so quiet and deserted
Amidst the sick rice fields
While here it has become a luxury
To spend time watching the rain
Gazing at the evening rays
Collecting dew drops
Or enjoying the fragrance of flowers.

Are you still playing your flute?
The more it disturbs my conscience
to be thinking of you
in the hazard of you
my younger brothers unemployed and desperate
my people disunited by politics
my friend slaughtered mercilessly
this world is too old and bleeding.

You can view the poet’s opinion regarding her own poem http://zurinahhassan.blogspot.com/2010/05/masihkah-kau-bermain-serulingare-you.html

This poem his about a persona who reminisces the time he/she spends when in a village. There are many things that are now luxury to her such as listening to the melody of the flute itself, gazing at the evening rays, collecting dew drops, or enjoying the fragrance of flowers. The village is now deserted as many have moved to the city. Now that she has moved on with her life, she wonders whether the flutist is still playing the flute. This is because, there are many challenges in the world today such as the world is dying, the unemployment issue and the people are disunited because of different political views.

Family commitments
Priorities in life
Neglect of one’s duties

We should be aware of our family commitments and carry them out properly.
Everyone has priorities in, life and we should know what is important and what is not.
Following a hobby is good but there is a time for work and a time for play.

The poem is the first point of view.
The person is addressing another person and describing a situation to him.

Rhetorical question
Descriptive and questioning
Simple style and no rhyme

Sombre and regretful
Serious atmosphere

Imagery – e.g. ‘blown by the wind’, ‘depth of my heart’
Alliteration – e.g. ‘fragrance of flowers’
Symbol – e.g. ‘flute’, ‘song’
Repetition – e.g. ‘Are you still playing your flute?’
Figurative Language – Metaphor e.g. ‘The melody concealed in the slime hollow of bamboo – Personification e.g. ‘sick rice field’