Archive for the ‘teaching English’ Tag

Kalasiu picking   1 comment

Kalasiu – seen or ate it before?

I recently went off to the sea with my colleagues to find a particular seashell called ‘Kalasiu’, wednesday evening.  The idea came about during the staff meeting, when the teachers talked about having a craving to eat these things. It helps that it is currently their season, so they are abundant on the shallow sea waters. we managed to get 4 people, with 2 of our students as boat drivers and spotters.

Shafie, my student + sea guide

the sea was calm and the weather is merciful – theres some sun, but not too bright that it burns your skin. My students drove the boat for a good 10 minutes from Kuala Sugut, and we jumped off into the water about my waist high.

the process of picking up these ‘kalasiu’ is easy, you just have a walkabout around, if you step on something shell-like, put your hands in and pick it up. we didn’t really work much, we picked for about 10 minutes and then we had a jollyabout for a good 15 probably.

My two colleagues – Rudi and Mawi

overexcited after finding my first kalasiu – ‘orang bandar’ betul

10 minutes of picking

Towards the end, we picked close to a full pail of kalasiu, maybe about 30kg. Of course, that night, we threw a feast. the teachers all had boiled Kalasiu for dinner. you eat them like an escargot – use a toothpick, and pick out whats inside. I myself ate a few of them, but I don’t see what is so good about it, aside it being very high in cholesterol.

at least i enjoyed the picking process, and that a dip in the seawater and some walkies on the beach can do good, especially after a week or two of tense work.


Lesson Study Project in SMKTS   3 comments

I was recently being asked to conduct a lesson study program for teachers in my panel. So, I thought it would be interesting to share my experience with everybody. If you are confused about the concept of lesson study, it is basically a form of professional development program – teachers meet up, discuss a lesson plan, one teacher carry it out whilst being observed by the rest, and then they sit down again to discuss shortfalls and possible improvements. If you’re still keen to read more, do check on this link.

Lesson Study – Definitions

Being put in the spotlight to run the program for English Panel is quite interesting, as I found myself directing my Head of Panel on what to do! At least he’s happy not being dumped with more responsibilities. After a quick briefing from the Senior Assistant, the panel got down to work.

Instead of applying the standard procedure of having everybody sitting down and drafting a lesson plan, it was decided that I will draft a lesson plan based on goals set, and then the whole panel would sit down and scrutinize it later. The end product looked something like this:



It is an attempt to introduce the style of using the format of (Sequence Connectors), + (Imperatives) in writing instructions on ‘how to’ type of essays. The lesson runs on discovery learning and PPP (presentation, practice, production) principles.

The lesson finished without hitches, although I did not manage to achieve all my goals. Here are some pictures of the lesson as it goes along:




My own thoughts post-lesson is that I might have set the bar too high to my students – a problem that I tend to be trapped in. There is probably a need to reduce the amount of activities in the lesson, perhaps not write a short essay, but just sentences. The students might make use of the extra time to let the new input sink in, and they could put more effort into each of their new sentences. The post-lesson discussion would be done later, probably next week. It would be interesting to hear what my colleagues have to say.

I was made to know that this ‘Lesson Study’ project is a national exercise. Have you done yours? Mind sharing your experience? 

Its out! Its out!   5 comments

Sometime in March, I wrote a little piece about my life in SMK Terusan Sugut to InStep magazine, a quarterly publication of Teachers’ Christian Fellowship Malaysia. and guess what, it got published!

check this out.