Wednesday, 15 July 2015

Eid Mubarak!

Eid Mubarak all!
Maaf Zahir Batin

(credit: google images)

Those who can DO, Those who can do more TEACH

Saturday, 11 July 2015

Descriptive Writing in 5 Razi: My Ideal Home

I was very pleased with this lesson in 5 Razi. Despite having taught them for a mere two weeks and the many negative comments I've heard about this class, they showed me that they were more than capable of learning. They were willing to learn. It was amazing how the introduction of the composition we were working on somehow 'fitted' with the ending although the groups were working independently! Here's the lesson plan:

Topic: My Ideal Home
Time: Double-period
Skills: Descriptive Writing (Place)
Materials: 1. How to start your essay (click here) 
                 2. Essay scaffolding (photo below)

1. Introduce descriptive writing briefly. (as opossed to factual and argumentative for example)
2. Put SS in groups of four (Four is the ideal number as they can collaborate with their shoulder partner too)
3. Distribute mahjong papers and marker pens to groups.
4. Distribute the scaffolding (structure to help SS write...imagine no safety net, no scaffolding, no parachute..just blowing in the wind peeps! SS need a lot help trust me! Sorry my files are so messy I can't seem to locate the scanned file)
5. Before dealing with the essay plan, teach how to start and essay that grabs the examiner's attention. (For this I have Annuar Tahar to thank for sharing his material with me many many moons ago. You can also dig or google or pin..there are thousands of resources in the net. However I've decided to be kind today haha - here's the worksheet to save you time :) By the way the Razians were all's like they had never heard of this before so the they took it like fish to water.)
6. Then assign each group with the one of content points in the scaffolding: introduction, location, facilities, size, decor and conclusion. (I had six groups of four)
7. Let each group write 1-2 paragraphs on the points given and the T assists them with vocabulary and sentences. (Some groups may need more than one piece of mah jong and make sure they write big enough to be seen on the wall)
8. Always give a time frame. (They needed a double period for everything to be completed. The next single period was for editing and feedback)
9. In the single period, put up the mahjong papers around the classroom (not just the front) As you move from one product to another, SS will change sitting directions too. (We used up all the boards and walls..I wish we had whiteboards all around the classroom but the typical Malaysian classroom doesn't have that so improvise!)
10. Get SS to point out the mistakes in the writing and then underline and correct them. (You can focus on tense and SVA if you like or else the masterpieces will be bloody :) Get SS to evaluate out of 10.
10. Finally, SS copy the essay. (Pleased to see minimal mistakes in their work and praised them for their effort. Alhamdulillah for giving me the strength to conduct my lessons as usual this holy month of Ramadhan for I usually tire a little)

The scaffolding taken from "Diagrammatic Compositions"

Groups expanding the notes...

Drafting first...

I forgot to capture photos of the walls though..sigh. On a final note teachers, I think what is most important is teacher guidance in the process of writing. We can have all the materials in the world but there is no substitute for teacher presence and guidance. No sitting allowed.

By the way, the group used the "Question" technique in the opening paragraph.
 Hope the scratchy plan helps :)
 Happy teaching!

Those who can DO, Those who can do more TEACH

A change of Skin

Time for a skin change :) I'm actually really busy with this research am presenting in September. Hoping to publish it in the proceedings. But as usual I get easily distracted and hooked on blogging! I think I've wasted a good two hours on this and I should be back working on that research!

Ramadhan Kareem

Those who can DO, Those who can do more TEACH