Sunday, 13 May 2012


If the government were really willing to send local English teachers  to overseas to improve the level of mastery and competence, of course it is most welcomed. There are also opportunities to go abroad for teachers like us. Recommendations from Tan Sri Yahaya Ibrahim, the Kirkby International College Board of Directors Chairman was very good, but it still needs in-depth study, said the Deputy Prime Minister,Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.In the 1950s, most English teachers went for teaching training at the Kirkby College ,England for 2 years and the results was the production of excellent teachers in the language. Why not .. For 2 years, the communication was with English native speakers  .. In addition, this could give opportunity for teachers to  dive into their culture which led to the formation of English, as pointed out by Tan Sri Yahaya.Indeed, if given the chanceI also wanted to attend the course  .. but alas, I have to give the golden chance to single  teachers ... becausealthough it would take 'only' two yearsa lot of sacrifices have to be done .. not only to the family, but as well as to our students who thirst for knowledge here ...
There is also a proposal to let excellent local teachers providing courses here....Just to ensure of  no 'wasting of money' issue to occur.. Hmmm....We have to wait and see ... Yes or not, which is which.... We teachers are really hunger for more and more knowledge and proficiency for the sake of our pupils..

Friday, 24 February 2012

50 Ways to Learn English

1. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes. Be confident. People can only correct your mistakes when they hear you make them.

2. Surround yourself in English. Put yourself in an all English speaking environment where you can learn passively. The best way to learn is through speaking.

3 Practise the 4 core skills: reading, writing, speaking and listening. They all need to be worked on for you to improve.

4. Keep a notebook of new words you learn. Use them in sentences and try to say them at least 3 times when you speak.

5. You will find words easier to remember if you try to remember an example sentence using that word rather the word on its own.

6. Create an atmosphere in which you want to learn, not because you have to. You’ll learn more when you’re learning because you want to.

7. Figure out how you learn. It can be by memorising, reading, speaking, summarising or other methods. Find out how you study best. It can be in a quiet place by yourself or with a group.

8. Get help! If you don’t understand something you’ve got to ask someone. Ask your teacher, classmates or friends for help.

9. Watch DVDs rather than TV. It’s better to use something that you can watch over again to catch information you might have missed the first time.

10. Watching TV only gives you the chance to hear something correctly first time. This is better for high level students. It can be great practice for speaking to native English speakers so you don’t have to ask them to repeat themselves!

11. Children’s books have easier words and are a good alternative to graded readers.

12. Newspapers are a good place to find passive constructs. Read through an article and see if you can find the passive sentences.

13. Read for the general meaning first. Don’t worry about understanding every word, then go back and look up new words.

14. For a word you don’t understand in a sentence, look at the other words around it. They will give you a hint. Try to guess the meaning from the context.

15. Learn root words. They’ll help you guess the meaning of words. For example: scrib = write, min= small

16. When you learn a new word, think of all its other forms: Beautiful (adjective), beauty (noun),beautifully (adverb).

17. Learn prefixes (dis-, un-, re-) and suffixes (-ly, -ment, -ful), these will help you to figure out the meaning of words and build your vocabulary.

18. Use English whenever you can. It’s as simple as that!

19. Don’t translate into English from your own language. Think in English to improve your fluency. Talk to yourself…but not on the bus otherwise people will think you have gone crazy!

20. You can’t learn English from a book. Like driving a car, you can only learn through doing it.

21. The most natural way to learn grammar is through talking.

22. Keep an English diary or journal. Start by writing a few sentences a day and then get into the habit of writing more.

23. Sing your heart out! Show the world your beautiful voice! Learn English songs and sing along with them to improve fluency and intonation… anyone for Karaoke?

24. Get a penfriend or use chat-rooms, forums and community sites. If you can’t speak to someone in English, this is the next best thing.

25. Have English radio on in your house. Even if you are not actively listening to it, you will still be training your ears.

26. Mirror CDs. Read out loud along with a CD. Again, this is great for intonation, pronunciation and rhythm.

27. Dictation. Listen to a CD or friend and write down what you hear.

28. Nobody likes to hear their own voice, but be brave and try it! Record your voice and listen to your pronunciation and intonation. It will help you to identify your problem areas.

29. Ask your helpful teacher if you can record his lesson. This is a great way to review. You can also listen to your teachers speaking speed and intonation.

30. Use an English/English dictionary as it will help you to keep thinking in English and not translating.

31. If an English/English dictionary seems scary, there are learner’s dictionaries for English students of your level.

32. Don’t become too reliant on your dictionary. Your dictionary should be an aid, not your main teacher. Try to guess the meaning of words rather than going straight for your dictionary.

33. Don’t give up! Stay positive! Sometimes you will feel that you aren’t learning quickly enough. Everyone feels like this, don’t worry about it. You’ll get there in the end.

34. Enjoy it! We learn more when we are having fun!

35. If you get nervous when speaking, take two deep breaths before you say something. You’ll speak better when you feel relaxed.

36. You are never too young or too old to start learning English. Don’t make excuses not to learn. What are you waiting for?

37. Carry cue cards with you. These are small cards which you can write new words on. You can pull them out and look at them whenever you have a free minute.

38. Use post-it notes and stick them around your home. You can use them to label things. Stick one on your pet cat!

39. You can’t ignore phrasal verbs (two words verbs), there are hundreds of them in English and they’re widely used. The more you focus on their meaning, the more you’ll be able to guess the meaning of new ones. You’ll start to recognise their patterns.

40. Gather your thoughts. Take a second to think about what you’re going to say. You know the grammar, but maybe you don’t use it correctly when you speak.

41. Meet new people. Make the effort to mix with English speakers in your town. 

42. Be the person to start conversations in English. Try to keep the conversations moving and use listening words (‘really?’ / ‘go on…’/ ‘what happened then?’) Don’t wait for others to speak to you. Get in there!

43. Learn English with a friend. You’ll have someone you can practice with and you can motivate each other to study.

44. Idioms can be difficult to memorise, but they are great fun to use and they’ll make your English more colourful.

45. Use the correct article (a/an, the). Be aware that there is more to this rule than a/an= non specific, the=specific. For example: A university (not an university because it begins with a consonant sound). An hour (not a hour because the ‘h’ is often silent).

46. For fluency, try image training. Before you go to that restaurant think through what the waiter is likely to say to you. Think of what phrases you are going to use.

47. Get yourself a qualified teacher. Who wants to learn wrong things?

48. Nobody can learn all of the English language. No need to worry about trying. A useful shortcut to learning is that in English we have lots of words that have the same pronunciation, but a different spelling and meaning. For example, ‘come here’ has the same pronunciation as, ‘I can hear the birds’. You might find it easier to build vocabulary by knowing the different meanings.

49. Once you have a basic level of English explore the different ways you can say the same thing. This makes your English more interesting to the listener and it shouldn’t be too difficult for you because you already know the basics. For example, how many ways can we say, ‘Goodbye' in English?

50. And finally.....Don't sit next to people who won't speak to you in English.

Wednesday, 22 February 2012

English Language Panel  ( First Meeting )

Date      : 30 December 2012
Venue   : SK Taman Bunga Raya 1 Meeting Room
Time     : 8.30 a.m

Content :
1.   Reminder from the headmistress about the transmission of the record book along with the annual   lesson plan, how to fill a complete record book, the importance of keeping good record books and to bring teaching and learning materials in doing L&T in the classroom.

2 Filling Analysis System Examination School as the date specified.

     3.    Aware of the importance of government policies such as the USSR and MBMMBI

4. Teaching entirely in English and encourage students to speak in English.

5. Filling TOV marks in the record books.

6. The exam paper must be made according to JSU and different levels of students.

7.  Conducting post mortem after each test and examination.

8.  Record the impact of good or bad in the record books.

9.  Maintaining neatness and control of class before running L & T in the classroom.
     10. Encourage peer teaching to pupils.

11. Display the student's work if necessary.

12. Provide adequate work or exercises appropriate to the level of student abilities.

13. Yearly Scheme of Work must follow the school calendar.

14. Coordinator for the Year 2012:
            Year 1 - Azlinawati bt Sofian
            Year 2 - Nurul Ezzah bt Ishak
            Year 3 - Mariani bt Aziz
            Year 4 - Suhaila bt Samsuddin
            Year 5 - Hazliza bt Kamaruddin
            Year 6 - Fadzlina bt Kadri
     15. Coordinator for activities:
            Story Telling (Level 1) - Intan Erisha bt Jamaluddin
            Story Telling (Level 2) - Haslina bt Md Ismail
            Public Speaking          - Wan Arisah bt Ariffin
            Spelling Competition   -  Hafifah Mazlina bt Mohamed Hamid
            Choral Speaking         -  Fadzlina bt Kadri
            Action Song               -  Intan Erisha bt Jamaluddin
     16. The selection of exercise books over the years:
            Year 6 : 3 books ( 2s No 1  and 1 No 10)
            Year 5 : 3 books ( 2s No 1  and 1 No 10)
            Year 4 : 3 books ( 2s No 1 and 1 No 10)
            Year 3 : 3 books ( 3s No 1)
            Year 2 : 3 books ( No 1, No 3 and No 4)
            Year 1 : 2 books ( No 1 and No 4)
     17. Encouraging teamwork, drilling and leisure teaching.

18. Lesson Study will be held at the school for Bahasa Malaysia, English Language and History conducted by Excellent Teachers who will be invited.

Monday, 20 February 2012

Type of Poems

Here are some different types of poems to try in your classroom or at home for fun.

1.       ACROSTIC
In Acrostic poems, the first letters of each line are aligned vertically to form a word.
The word often is the subject of the poem.

An example is-

Elegantly and efficiently shaped
Good to eat
Great fun to find at Easter
Smooth shelled

2.       ALPHABET
Each line begins with the letters of the alphabet in order.
An example -        
        A young girl was busy working on her project for school
                            But suddenly she had a question.
                            Could this be her lucky day?
                            Deciding to find out, she
                            Entered her backyard and
                            Found  hundreds of green shamrocks waiting for her.

Another type of alphabet poem requires you to use all 26 letters of the alphabet in your poem.

Write a poem about yourself using  this form or another poetry form.
Line 1: __ Your name
Line 2: _, _, _ 3 personal characteristics or physical traits
Line 3: Brother or sister of__ or son/daughter of
Line 4: Who loves__, __, and __ 3 people, things, ideas
Line 5: Who feels__ about__1 emotion about 1 thing
Line 6: Who needs__, __, and __ 3 things you need
Line 7: Who gives __, __, and __3 objects you share
Line 8: Who fears__, __, and __3 items
Line 9: Who'd like to see, __1 place, or person
Line 10: Who dreams of __ 1 item or idea
Line 11: A student of__ your school or teacher's name
Line 12: __ Nickname or repeat your first name
4.       BALLAD:
Retell an event in history, in the news, or in your life as a ballad.
You will want the ballad to rhyme. You may copy the style of other poets.

An example is -
Joan of Arc

The day was cold,
Both armies bold,
As hands grasped the ladders,
Ramparts were scaled,
Arrows were sailed,
But the French climbed the Tourelles.

Although Joan was hit in the shoulder,
The French continued to grow bolder,
Even slowly healing in a field,
She raised a fiery French revolt,
Just hit by a crossbow bolt,
Armor glistening white.

The English got cold feet,
And began a hasty retreat,
As French crawled out of Orleans,
Passing the cold river on boards,
Attacking English with sharp swords,
They set the Tourelles on fire.

English Captain Sir Glasdale,
Certainly looked very pale,
When they found him drowned in the river,
Sir Talbot ordered the English forts be left,
To avoid anymore French fort theft,
And so Orleans was freed.


5.       CINQUAIN:  (History of)

Cinquains have five lines
Line 1: Title (noun) - 1 word
Line 2: Description - 2 words
Line 3: Action - 3 words
Line 4: Feeling (phrase) - 4 words
Line 5: Title (synonym for the title) - 1 word

An example is -

Helpful, caring
Loves to garden
Excitable, likes satisfying people

6.       COLOR:
A poem about your favorite color. Express your feelings about a single color with analogies or similes or list nouns which are (or remind you of) that color. Another easy form is to use the 5 senses-looks like, sounds like, smells like, tastes like, feels like.
Color looks like
Color sounds like
Color smells like
Color tastes like
Color feels like

An example is -

Orange is feeling in your stomach after an orange soda quenched your thirst.
Orange is the sun after a summer day.
Orange is the sound of a field filled with dandelions blowing in the wind.
Orange is the taste of a pizza that just came out of the oven.
Orange is the sound of a busy bumblebee.
Orange is the taste of cold glass of orange juice.
Orange is the feeling inside you when you accomplish something.
Orange is the sound of a tomato plant growing.
Orange is the color of a carrot that just popped out of the ground.
Orange is the smell of a Tiger-Lily petal.
Orange is the feeling after a baby smiles.
Orange is the color of a brown beaver's incisor.
Orange is the smell of a late July day.
Orange is the feeling of a puppy's fur.
Orange is the color of peach marmalade on a side of toast.
Orange is the sound of a canoe paddling through shallow water.
And orange is a color that is safe and alive.


7.       DIAMANTE:
The Diamante is a form similar to the Cinquain. The text forms the shape of a diamond.
Line 1: Noun or subject - one word
Line 2: Two Adjectives that describe line 1
Line 3: Three 'ing words that describe line 1
Line 4: Four nouns - the first two are connected with line 1; the last two are connected with line 7
Line 5: Three 'ing words that describe line 7
Line 6: Two adjectives that describe line 7
Line 7: Noun Synonym for the subject

               An example is-

Sharp, skinny
Writing, answering, erasing
Wood, lead, ink, plastic
Drawing, smudging, leaking
Durable, comfortable

By Abbie

8.       EPITAPH:
"Here lies Sam Shay,
Smoked six packs a day.
He started smoking when he was five.
Now that fool is no longer alive."

Explorer Poems:
      Remember "In 1492, Columbus sailed the ocean blue"? I mentioned that line to my students while we were doing explorer reports, and they assured me they had never heard of it before. So, it made great sense to assign explorer poems. The plan was to start with 5-10 facts about the explorer from their reports. Then we reviewed simple rhyme schemes and discussed poetic license. The students began their poems in class, and then took them home to share (and revise) with parents.

9.       HAIKU:
Haiku is Japanese poetry that reflects on nature and feelings. You use your observation skills to write what you see in a new or different way.
There are three lines with five syllables in the first line, seven syllables in the second, and five syllables in the third.

Harry Potter haiku –
His hair black as night
A lightning scar tells his life
He is a legend.
-- Cherie, age 10

A powerful blast
Harry is blown off his feet
From the shadow steps ...
-- Alyssa, age 12


Each line of the poem begins with the words "I wish" and then you fill in your ideas.
The poem should be 8-10 lines long.
I wish I had three day weekends
I wish I had a nap at noon
I wish I had more time to play
I wish I had greener grass
I wish I had whiter teeth
I wish I had summer year round
I wish I had six pack abs
I wish I had a magic wand
to make all my wishes
come true.

11.   LIES:

Here is your chance to tell a falsehood and not get punished!
In this type of poem, each line contains an outrageous lie.
Each line must begin differently.
The main rule is not to say anything that hurts anyone.

A limerick has five lines.
The last words of lines one, two, and five rhyme.
The last words of lines three and four rhyme.
A limerick has to have a pattern of stressed and unstressed syllables.
    U S U U S U U S
    U S U U S U U S
    U S U U S
    U S U U S
    U S U U S U U S

An example is -
"There was an old man from Peru
Who dreamed he was eating his shoe
He awoke in the night
With a terrible fright
To discover it was totally true."

Limericks online -

Describe an imaginary monster. Try to have a theme (food, sports, animals, school subjects etc.)

An example is-
"The Scrumptious Sweet- Tooth Monster"

The Scrumptious Sweet- Tooth Monster has:
Hershey Kiss Cranium
Peppermint Smirk
Appealing Rock Candy Torso
 Red Licorice limbs
Black Licorice appendages

Green and Blue M&M eyes
Bubble gum feet that blow up into hefty bubbles when he scampers
Snout is made of a bulky scoop of rocky road ice cream that is so cold it will never liquefy
Vibrant Colored Chiclets for his choppers
 Tootsie Rolls for eyebrows
In a crown form he has Sweet Tarts for locks of hair

Left Fingers are made of grape lollipops
Right Fingers are made of Watermelon lollipops
This is one appetizing monster!

By: Kate

14.   RHYMING:
Couplets are made up of two lines whose last words rhyme. They are often silly.

An example is -
 The cat ate a mouse
And then brought it in the house.

Triplets are made up of three lines. The rhyming pattern can be AAA or ABA.

An example is -
What a fine day
To go out to play
In the month of May.

Quatrains are made up of four lines. The rhyming pattern can be AABB or ABAB.

An example is -
The Purple Cow
Gelett Burgess

I never saw a purple cow,
I never hope to see one:
But I can tell you, anyhow,
I'd rather see than be one.

****For help finding words that rhyme, go to

15.   SHAPE (or CONCRETE):
Shape poems are made up of words that have been placed in such a way that they make the shape of an object and also use words to describe the object.

 Start by making a simple outline of the shape or object ( an animal, a football, a fruit etc.) large enough to fill a piece of paper.
Then brainstorm a minimum of ten words and phrases that describe the shape. List action and feeling words as well.
Next, place a piece of paper over the shape and decide where your words are going to be placed so that they outline your shape but also fit well together.
Separate words and phrases with commas.

16.   THIRD EYE:
The Third Eye poem tells about things that might go unnoticed and are improbable or  impossible to see with regular eyesight. The Third Eye knows what is really happening.

An example is -
The third eye notices when Abbie spilt juice on the rug and said it was Lizzie.
The third eye notices when you tell your mom you brushed your teeth for two minutes,
      and you only brushed for one.
The third eye notices when you're supposed to be doing your homework, and you're listening to music.
The third eye sees when you're on the phone for five minutes longer then you're supposed to be.
The third eye can tell when you had ice cream for dinner when your parents went out.


The Song of the memory

I can hardly find this song in youtube or whatsoever..It seems that I have to pay just to listen to the whole song.. This is the one that I still remember taught by my primary school teacher when I was 10.


(Edward Lisbona / Joe Lubin)

Lou Preager & His Orch. (vocal: Eileen Orchard) - 1947
Roberto Inglez & His Orch. - 1947
Johnny Denis & His Ranchers - 1947
Radio revellers - 1949

He'll mend your shoes for you, he'll mend your blues for you
With clicks of the tricks of the trade
For as he taps away your heart will start to sway
To the shoemaker's serenade

Tick-a-tick-a-tee, tick-a-tick-a-tay
Tick-a-tick-a-tick tick tick tick tick tick tick-a-tick-a-tay

The things that gent can do to any bent old shoe
No matter how tattered and frayed
And as he sews your seams he mends your broken dreams
With his shoemaker's serenade

Tick-a-tick-a-tee, tick-a-tick-a-tay
Tick-a-tick-a-tick tick tick tick tick tick tick-a-tick-a-tay

I'd like to state his work is great
And if you wait he won't take long
And you can watch the children of the neighbourhood
Gaily dancing to his merry song

If you're along the street and hear a song that's sweet
It's not any penny arcade
It's just a cobbler gay who shoos your blues away
With the shoemaker serenade

Tick-a-tick-a-tee, tick-a-tick-a-tay
Tick-a-tick-a-tick tick tick tick tick tick tick-a-tick-a-tay

(Transcribed by Bill Huntley - November 2004)