Disclaimer : Certain things have been omitted or edited. The school particulars will not be disclosed. If you feel offended at any time, let me know why and perhaps I would make some changes. The things said herein are solely my opinion and has nothing to do with the school, or the government’s standing. Pictures taken were edited, and definitely not shot with the intention to be posted on social media as something nice so don’t expect too much from the pictures. Certain sentences are not grammatically correct. Continuing would mean you have read and understood this message.
<The events took place on the 3oth of March 2016.>
When you spot the bus at 5.48am and it reminds you of ‘A new hope’ with the Star wars music in the playing in the back of your head.
Bus passed by Dataran Merdeka at about 6am. A few minutes went by as I walked after I got off the bus, purchased my token and walked to the correct platform. The sound of the LRT was reassuring, that they indeed have started work on schedule or earlier.
The ride took about 20 mins and I arrived within the targeted time frame. Waited a little for my friend to come with her mum (her mum was driving). I got in the car and said hi >< . I was offered a drink, a blended vegetable drink with black sesame if not mistaken, it was the first time I drank this kind of drink that was home-made. I only drank such drinks by pouring out the contents from a sachet and stirring it (which we can buy easily). It tasted rather good~ Being about 7a.m I could see the sky come to live, the colour and its shades. I guess I was too engrossed looking at it that I didn’t bother to snap a picture or was it because I believed that its fine to experience something nice without documenting it? We chit chatted, introductions and questions were exchanged.
Upon arriving at the school, I realized how humongous it was. One of those mega schools. The students were definitely happy to see her (my friend) and asked if I was her brother, or bf? After she answered no to the first question. It was a no for the second too haha.
Looking at the uniforms of these students, I realized that I may have made a huge mistake. It was a S.J.K.(C), a Chinese primary school. I would be deep in trouble, if I had to take any classes where I was required to teach in Chinese. FYI : Science and math is taught in Chinese, in fact everything is taught in Chinese with the exception of Bahasa Malaysia and English.
Had my Nasi Lemak at the school canteen with 2 other teachers, they were having a discussion, something that I should not disclose since its rather private. For some reason, the Nasi Lemak was, to me quite big, so much so that I could not finish it. She didn’t even touch her food, saying that she wasn’t feeling hungry, the students were still swarming her.
We proceeded to the administrative building, signed in at office and met the GPK HEM, she was one tough lady, commanding respect. Now the students earlier were questioned as to what their intentions were, they were caught off guard, they left promptly after realising their mistake. Thankfully, we were not subjected to such a treatment.
The GPK HEM checked her list and assigned us to step in for 2 teachers, one each. One was on leave while the other was attending some seminar or “kursus”. My first class was at 8 a.m. I took my seat, wondering if I had to carry any textbooks and do some actual teaching. The teacher next to me told me that the teacher I’m stepping in for has probably already left them with some homework. Now this teacher reminded me of my BM teacher from Standard 1. In terms of both voice and looks.
The Adventure begins
1st class was really noisy until the show larva started playing. They called it labba. I let them have the computer to search for it. It was smooth sail from there. I introduced myself as Sun, as in Sun Wu Kong, they laughed ~
Ps : Teachers are refereed to by their surname, in my case it was Sun or Soon.
2nd class was actually better at first. They had to copy some English homework, which the previous teacher gave. Played a movie called The Good Dinosaur since the internet wasn’t working, thankfully I had my Pendrive with a movie or two inside. Deadpool was definitely not appropriate for these little kids so The Good Dino was the way to go.
3rd class. Noisy as well. The same English teacher game them the same work I suppose since they were doing the same thing as earlier class. I told them to do their own work, some played at the back, some did their homework, chit chatting or just plain talking. Then all of a sudden this prefect started crying. I had no idea why and she would not say. The others didn’t know as well. I advised her to freshen up in the wash-room. She came back better and okay I suppose. Oh, English homework is easy, however there was this kid named Adam, an “ang mo” (a term to refer to white people) but he got them wrong… I guess he wasn’t thinking and processing those simple questions.
4th class, oh man, a mess. Standard 5 and needless to say they more or less know stuff. Bad words etc you name it. The class assistant monitor was a petite girl. This class was really talkative, since their teacher did not leave them any homework I let them do what they want. Some did math and man I suck at it 😂. There was this kid who was boycotted, they didn’t want to be in a group with him to discuss or do it together for whatever reasons and I had to teach him instead and walao eh, my math, much bad, much no wow. He soon lost interest at the second question, not even halfway. I would like to help but looks like he wasn’t having it. Needless to say, they bigger they come the more noise they make.
Last 2 classes, thought it would be easy since the teacher had left them something to do, far from the truth mate. Things got so out of hand that I had to use brute-voice to get them back in order. I don’t like the idea of screaming at people but looks like it became a necessary evil. That did show them I meant business, it was okay from then on, despite having to interfere a few times after they were done. Oh ya, it was a Chinese lesson. I was probably saved by “pin yin” because I could type the words they wanted on my phone and show them.
- Teaching is not easy. You have to come to school early, which means waking up early. Deal with students, many students and each of them have their own thinking. You have to manage the class, keep things in order, teach, cater to them and make sure no one suddenly starts a fight or cuts his or her classmate’s tongue. Questions will come in bulk and you have to handle them. I was surrounded and everyone was asking or calling out to me. Parents whom are reading this, understand that a teacher has lots to do, the fact that they have their own lives hasn’t even been taken into account. Let them do their work, I believe that they are trying their best but being human means we have ups and downs and sometimes are unable to perform at their peak. Don’t complain complain haha, you should try being a teacher for a day then you’ll know.
My classes were only 3 hours (6 classes) for the day but it was enough to drain me. Together, I have easily had to handle more than 100 students. (I’m referring to numbers here not that students were easy to handle).
Students at this age :
- Do not poses the understanding that they should not spoil the movie for others. Its normal. If I were a kid of their age, I’d be oh yes, I’ve seen this movie, I can tell you what happens. I’m so great ~
- Will tell you everything. Every tiny thing can lead to a bigger thing, they will tell you that so and so hit them, so and so took their stuff, so and so said unkind things and the list goes on. This is also normal. As a kid I looked up to my teacher to be assertive. To be their protector and serve justice.
- Are playful, at times hyper. I was no different, maybe worse maybe better >< There is nothing wrong with playing. I neglected most of my studies in Primary 1 and 2. I had to play and watch cartoon okay, no time for all the homework.
- Are shadows of what we once were. You know, where in class there are the clever ones, the hyper ones, and the quiet ones? I was the hyper and naughty one.
- No minister should dictate or simply change the way they would like things to be done. Its just been like that, frustratingly. They introduce something new and just go head on to implement it. If you’re a full time teacher instead of a minister who gets paid waaaayyyy more and sits around in the office with aircond then yes maybe you can have a say. If not just lay your hands off.
- You get paid for being a replacement teacher, I didn’t know until the very end. I just took it as an adventure at first, oh silly me.
- I wish I was a better student back then but the idea of dealing with a class of monkeys like I was is still dreadful.
Lastly, the teacher whom I stepped in for is a pretty lady and no I don’t want to be a teacher ><