Tuesday, September 30, 2008

The Lost Diary

Visiting my parents-in-law on Raya eve.

"We figure that you have lost your diary and you are trying to make up for the loss?"

Gosh! What a funny message I received from someone 'caring'.....

Whatever she says! My blog is an important part of my daily routine.

Anyway, the sender is really a caring person, hence, I am NOT offended in any way...

It's 12.48am, 1 October 2008. I received a number of messages with "Happy Raya" greetings. In fact, the first one reached me 24 hours ago, sent by ? (your guess is as good as mine).....

But the sms traffic was jammed! I could not reply to some of these messages, furthermore, some messages did not carry the sender's name....my apologies.

Whatever it is, Selamat Hari Raya! Do leave your comments after reading my blog, it's free! Yeah, perhaps, I'm trying to make up for my 'lost' diary.....Yes, sis, you are funny!

The Crossroads I 'Love' ....

After 7-Eleven, you'll see a small bookstore. Get ready.....
This is the crossroads, take the left turning. Go straight on until you come to Jalan 11 where you should turn right.
When you want to go back to Rawang town, you'll have to be careful with that flower pot which will obstruct your views....can you see it?

By 4.30pm, I was done with my Raya dishes.... among others- Sambal Kacang, Rendang Ayam, Ayam Masak Merah, Ketupat, Vegetables and Ayam Masak Kicap (for the little girls) . My plan to make Mee Rebus was changed at the last minute 'coz I felt that it would spoil our Raya eve dinner. Aisyah and Hawa baked a special cake and they also made raya cookies, but I had surrendered after 5 hours of cooking.

"Yeah, shall we go buy a few more items for Raya?", a brilliant suggestion by my husband.

As we were in the car, it occurred to me that I should remind my Raya guests about the crossroads to Taman Mawar.

*Please refer to the pictures above.

I would like you to be careful when you are coming to my house as this crossroads is quite tricky to the motorists who think that most pedestrians are law-abiding citizens.

Some of these pedestrians think that they are stronger than the lorry. Being hit or not, won't make any difference to them.

Some 'beautiful' girls think that the drivers are enviously looking at their body which may make J-Lo rush to the best plastic surgeon!

Some 'busy' pedestrians must start dialling a number on their handset when they are crossing at this crossroads.

In the morning, some students are walking half-asleep at this same place!

Motorcyclists must do some stunt acts here.... weaving through cars which stop at this place.

Certain 'stuntman' who comes back from work, loves to drive straight from the road beside the 7-Eleven to Tun Teja....

A 'good Samaritan' has added the beautiful feature at this crossroads by placing a flower pot, so that more drivers will curse him when they can't see the oncoming cars from the main road.

Anyway, when my husband and I were using the road just now, the crossroads was quite deserted 'coz many people had balik kampong. We too will take a break from this crossroads, only to find many, many more crossroads in Melaka!

Sunday, September 28, 2008


A helping hand

I am not very sure if I would get the chance to blog in the next couple of days.

3 reasons for my doubts:

a) I'll be quite busy with household chores , plus making some Raya cookies and rendang, also painting and spring cleaning, oh yes, maybe I want to go to the beauty salon (gosh)

b) I may have to spend hours contacting my friends via the phone and the net (Yahoo Mail and Facebook, just to name a few)....

c) I should start packing to go back to my kampong in Alor Gajah, Melaka and next, I'll be busy cleaning my house in Tampin 'coz little children will surely come even though I only plan to rest there.

Anyway, if I happen to drop by, I'll be happy to do so...

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Somewhere Over The Rainbow

Somewhere over the rainbow,
Way up high,
There's a land that I heard of once in the lullaby...

That's part of a song that I learnt in my secondary school, a premier school called Tunku Kurshiah College in Seremban.

To tell you the truth, I'm not sure of the lyrics, but I am sure about one thing, that is the Music lessons with Mrs Ho were never boring. She could understand what songs we needed
to sing. If it was the last couple of weeks before the school holidays, she would surely play 'Home Sweet Home' and I would be among the girls who would sing our hearts out at the tune of this poignant song....Well, I was always homesick then, sob sob.

TKC, how I was always in a love-hate relationship with you!

Yesterday, in the Star (Friday, 26 Sept), I came across the latest development in our country's secondary education system which was on page N3.

"Students of Malay College Kuala Kangsar and Tunku Kurshiah College may soon choose if they want to sit for the International Baccalaureate (IB) or the Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia......Ed.Min.,DS Hishammuddin Tun Hussein announced that both schools would be offering the IB from 2011...."

Wah, what can I say about my alma mater? I guess I am quite proud to be a student of TKC, once...

When I went to photostat a document at the Batu 16 Xerox shop, I bumped into my TKC super senior who now runs her own business. She has a son in 4 Anggerik. While waiting for my turn, I had the pleasure to listen to her reminiscing about her life in TKC, where Datin Rosmah and Dato' Shahrizat were her seniors...it seemed that all that happened about 40 years ago could be narrated in such a manner that one might think it happened just yesterday....

I could understand her story well because I was there for 5 years and I played quite an active role there. I was not a bully and I also learnt to put up with the hardships, if that is what it should be called....

But Mrs Ho is certainly an important person in a chapter of my life. Her songs were soothing to my ears and they were sung melodiously by us , the sweet girls of TKC......

Somewhere over the rainbow,
Blue birds fly,
Blue birds fly high,
Oh why can't I?

Friday, September 26, 2008

The Quiz

The last few minutes of today's class seemed like ages......

I had a few green-pows in my handbag in case the class went berserk!

When I tried to start 'teaching', I found their form teacher busily dealing with her students. I asked ,"Do you need more time with them?"

She seemed desperate, as though she was racing against time , to complete some co-curricular marks. Hence , I went down to the staff room, whereby I found a teacher asking my friend about making the 'Bread Pudding'. Wah! The 'homemaker' in me was suddenly aroused by the idea of baking something for my family. Gosh! Kitchen is not really my favourite place.

After 40 minutes, I found myself marching to 5A again. It was almost twelve noon. Would they be able to maintain their sanity? Since the last paper for the SPM Trial Exams ended 2 hours earlier. I was worried....

I decided to carry on with the Raya Quiz even though they were as good as angels!

A few students were expecting some quiz on idioms or literature but soon their fears were brushed aside when I explained that the question could be "Who is the student who used to send me toys over the net?". Well, that was just an example.

I started off by asking questions including "Whose house phone number ends with ####?" and "Who lives on Jalan #/##?" , of which there was bound to be somebody who was able to make a wild guess.

A kind soul helped me to distribute the green-pows to the winners, for which he was rewarded with a green-pow too! This was because he was not allowed to answer any of the questions posed during the quiz.

Before I left the class, I wished them a happy holiday . And don't forget ya! Everyone is invited to come to my house after I come back from kampong for Hari Raya!

What Next After School ?

Now the SPM trial exams are over and it's the beginning of the Raya holidays.... Naimah is not spared the stress that is also suffered by Hasif. But my girl who will turn 12 next Thursday is going to REALLY enjoy herself after the gruelling weeks of UPSR followed by PSRA.

As for Hasif and my form 5 students, I can understand their need for a proper rest from all the torture they have been through; nevertheless, they will become stronger and armed with the psychological defence when facing the real exams in November.

But, what next after the SPM? I guess it's important for these young , aspiring SPM candidates to also scout for opportunities for scholarships etc offered by colleges or any organisation......NOW.... I mean before SPM.

Will that divert their attention from the exam itself? No, in fact, they can start talking about it with their friends (form 5 and those in colleges). I know there are forums which they can take part in. (Try the net).

These SPM candidates should also approach their school counsellors, who have easy access to information regarding the pre-university studies.

Yes, it is vague initially but you'll get a clearer picture soon. At the same time, study hard for the exams. Frankly, I personally believe that SPM is the most important exam...............after that, everything is quite easy.

Great Minds

I think everyone can guess what I did yesterday- none other than shopping, this time we took the 3 girls along.

Aisyah was left on her own to pick her choices. Little Sarah and Zainab had to be accompanied for safety reasons- for their safety and for the safety of my purse...... The prices of items for little girls are simply shocking!

By the time our car left the parking lot, I was half-dead. In fact I just slept until I reached my lovely bed and another 2 hours were spent dreaming.

No wonder I could not blog last night.

I also spent quite some time contacting a pal to exchange views on some current issues. Really hot issues! I bet my pal is smiling reading this. I remember saying "Great minds think alike". Do you?

Anyway, since last night my husband and I found one very interesting movie to enjoy together, we stayed up late until it ended at 1.00 am. For a couple who hardly watch tv , there must be a very good reason why we were glued to the tv this time. It was the best movie this year....to me. It was an adaptation from a novel written by Stephen King. Now you understand why.....right?

To all my students, happy holidays!!!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Being Taken For Granted?

Oh! What a wonderful world I live in. I know there is starvation and there is war, and there is natural disaster too; but there is so much oxygen for us to share. There is also an abundant supply of solar energy that has been consumed by us for years and years (indefinite time).

Wednesday, I am back to work.

It was 10.10 am, I was in the hall, invigilating the SPM Trial Exams (Modern Math). First, I was with my 5KJ students and after forty minutes, I went to the back of the hall, to keep an eye on the 5SI students (a relief duty).

The students were restless, the Math paper was just a valueless set of booklet which bore no significance at all to them. A teacher reported to me about how some of the students from that class (and from 5SJ) were being rude by ignoring her instructions to 'shut up'. I nodded (to mean 'Yeah, I got it!').

And there off I went to the battle ground.....The students could sense my determination and almost immediately only a pin drop could be heard in the back of the hall. Yes! Job done! The students seemed sleepy suddenly and one by one, they were 'shot' to the dream world. I remained standing near them, in case a riot would spark out of boredom.

In my case, I was actually enjoying the sound of music, of pens dancing (some did waltz,some did breakdance) on the paper; of the squeking noise made by the students' chairs ; and of the sound produced by the snips made by the gardener to trim the hedges. The little birds were chirping and the sun was glowing fiercely; and the wind was blowing my tudung gently. It felt like spring!

A few hours later, when I was at home, the sights and sounds during the invigilation duty took my mind off my ailing body. Oops! That's too much! No, my body was only slightly weak and it was getting better.

After breaking fast, I checked on Hasif, who had smsed me to wake him up at 9.50pm. My little princesses (Sarah and Zainab) cajoled me into going out just for a ride (but of course, must drop by at Pasar Mini Malek to buy something).

Later, Mukhlis (who had to come back from the hostel-owing to his chicken-pox) asked me about any food that he should avoid as his friends warned him to abstain from eating certain food. I was ironing my batek at that time (it's Batek Day tomorrow) but I carefully listed down the 'forbidden food' - it may upset him but he had to be forewarned.

I also had to remind Naimah to study as she was over the moon (already) because tomorrow would be her last day of exams- Penilaian Sekolah Rendah Agama. Last but not least, Aisyah asked me to guide her in making a bar chart using the Ms Excel. Gosh! Quite a long list of things to do in one night.

I think if you do wish to give an undivided love and attention to all your children, make sure you keep the number of children to one that is within your capability ; in terms of your strength and endurance.

But in my case, it's not only my 6 children I care about. I also have my students in my mind.

Just hope that I'm not taken for granted!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Hari Raya Card

Imagine, receiving a Raya card from an old pal!

Well, you don't see its value, do you?

Today, my day is brightened by a Raya card sent by my friend who shared the joy and hardships in 1989/90 while doing our Diploma of Education in the International Islamic University, Petaling Jaya.

Of course , I was still in my dream world when suddenly I was awakened by my little daughter, who was proud to be the one handing the card to me. I guess, for the past few days I have had more dreams than what I normally had before. Sometimes, I was in class, dealing with the unruly students (I was wondering why the class was so chaotic- thank God it was a dream!).

Back to the card. She has also given me her new contact numbers and e-mail address, and a little note saying : 'I'm on Facebook too!'

Yes, no worries. I shall reply to this card either through the snail mail or e-mail or through Facebook.

Monday, September 22, 2008

A Longing For Health

Medicines are supposed to be taken to help you recover from an illness.

The problem is , whenever I take my medication, I feel helpless and lousy.

The cold weather is not kind to me either. Everything is cold. Everything. Even smses are cold too.

Only my forehead feels hot!

I guess I'd better get out of my room and find some other therapy, a 'retail therapy' sounds tempting because if I'm not mistaken government servants receive their hard-earned salary today.....but my body doesn't seem to agree with my desire.

So long!

Sunday, September 21, 2008

SPM Trial Exam Questions

I am still unwell but I think I have something to share with those who don't mind spending some time to peruse the SPM Trial Exam questions from SBP (the Boarding Schools) and from the other states.

Just refer to my
'LINKS' on your right --------> Yes, that's right!---------->

*Credit goes to Hasif who provides me with this info.

Before I forget,
thanks to the caring heart who inquired after me.

Love you and leave you -
lulu (Meaning: I must go although I'd like to stay longer).

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Shut Out.........

What a day! I spent the entire day in bed.

I was in the dream world from 6.00 am to 6.00 pm. Of course, I got up to perform my Subuh, Zohor and Asar prayers. Apart from that I was zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.............

I am barred from doing anything by my weak body.

If I happen to be stronger in a couple of days, I hope to be able to perform my duties as usual. For now, I need to lie down again...........

Friday, September 19, 2008

Why Do You Remember My Name?

I was the form teacher of 5 Science 2 (SM Dato' Haji Talib Karim, Melaka) in 1991. This photo has no connection with this story. (Then why is it here?)

In 1992, I came to Rawang to be with my husband after spending a year as a weekend wife.

One day, as I was assigned to do relief duty in a form 5 class, I headed to the class with very little idea of what was bestowed on me. I hardly knew the students of this class, neither was I fit enough to control them. You see, I was new to the school (it's not SEMEKAR) and I was carrying my second child, with morning sickness still haunting me.

Unfortunately, the principal was doing his rounds and he was not pleased to see a few boys standing outside the class. I just reached this bl##*! class when I saw my big boss furiously scrutinizing the class, as though by doing that the class could be silenced forever.

This big boss hardly knew me and he seemed unsure who to blame, .....Gosh! I became his easy target!

"Teacher, where did the boys come from?"

"I'm sorry, I have no idea..I just reached this class"

He just shook his head and left me, who was dumbfounded, looking like a stray sheep. It was the first time, and in fact,
the only time I had to deal with such a situation!

I turned to the class, (my blood was boiling inside), and the students were extremely quiet.

Suddenly, a boy got up and went to his friend's place, presumably to ask him about something.

But, oh oh, too bad, this teacher had turned into a tigress. In no time, she was already beside him and mercilessly she gave him a light tap on his face. It certainly didn't hurt him physically, but his pride, yes.....The boy was startled, he turned red and immediately he went back to his place.

My anger turned into pity, as I had acted foolishly, and emotionally......

As a new teacher, I secretly swore to myself that I should learn about the culture of the students in this school and I must learn to take control of such situations. I also secretly learnt the name of my victim just now...


Fast forward in 2007, sixteen years later ; .......

a supplier came to SEMEKAR and when I met him on his way to the office, (without hesitation) I called him by his name. He must be puzzled but he remained composed. After a brief conversation, smilingly he asked me,

"Teacher, what made you remember my name?"

This Is The Least We Can Do!

Teacher = Ustazah = Teacher
"Remember, the first ayat sent to our Prophet is IQRA' , meaning :BACALAH! (READ!)"
"Please, help yourself!"


This is the sort of greeting which can be expected from students when they meet me along the corridor of the school. No problem,...... anyway, to be called 'ustazah' is an honour.

The real
ustazah can be seen in the second photo, whereby she is giving a tazkirah or a 'reminder' to the muslim students and teachers on a Friday morning.

This is one programme to help students spiritually, especially when their parents may have lost control over their children, this is the least we can do, ie to guide them to be on the right path.

On a lighter note, the
makan-makan we have in the third photo is a dinner function (breaking fast) in school. After the breaking fast, there was a solat terawih and solat hajat for the PMR candidates (all of them, muslims and non-muslims). Hopefully, the PMR candidates will be motivated to do their best in this coming exams!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

A Man's Choice

I have been wondering why have I not written anything about my shopping experience?

If you like the term 'penchant', well, I am willing to use it to describe my inclination toward shopping.

The photo above is quite deceiving because it was taken a few days ago when I did my first round of shopping this month. That's when I learnt about a number of favourite brands for jeans. (Yeah, you guessed it right, my first round of shopping was done only with my two boys).

My first boy seemed as happy as he could be but my second one was preoccupied with the commuter train schedule since he had to flee the shopping complex a.s.a.p. or he would arrive late at his boarding school, .........dealing with the warden is no fun!

This afternoon, my 'gentleman' invited me to go shopping at a shopping complex in Shah Alam. (Oh! I'd better not tell you just which round of shopping it is this time!) .

The place was haven to people like me, I was mesmerised by the rows (and rows) of display that I encountered the moment I stepped into this shopping mall.

Fortunately, I had someone to bring me back to my senses. Without further ado, we made our selection and had everything done in a jiffy.

My husband doesn't waste his precious time over trivial matters! His favourite encouraging words are, "Yes, I think it looks good on you" , "Trust me" and "Let's try this one, I am sure it is your favourite".

Being a woman, I can be flattered by him and I actually do trust
his choice, it is always well thought-out and also it is always the right thing to do. Why else do you think I became his bride? Hehe....

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

My Young Man, You Da Man!

It must be cold and lonely being the only boy in this house.

I am blessed with 2 boys and 4 girls (among other gifts and blessings which God has showered me with).

Since my second boy is studying elsewhere, the other young man has to bear the costs of loneliness. He didn't want to leave this house 4 years ago even though he had the opportunity to do so. My husband and I found his preference to be wise, hence there was no interference from us in his decision-making. Keeping an open mind helps develop a child to take up responsibility for his choice.

Every now and then, my husband goes out with him (or sometimes it is done in our living room), just to let him enjoy the 'man-to-man' talk. Mum must be kept out of the way, at these times, since she has her own private time with each of her children.

Whenever he is down, (mum can sense it best), we let him tell us every thing, yeah, I repeat, every thing, .........no matter how ridiculous it is. Of course, being a young man who is macho (and handsome, ehem, beauty lies in the eye of the beholder), he knows his limits, and if it is none of my business, he has every right to keep it to himself.

I know, what my prof mentioned in the lecture room , is certainly true , that is :

"...One day, a young man/lady will find solace in some other form (could be a thing/ a person) , no parent is able to provide him with the comforts which he/she needs...then."

But before that happens, my husband and I would like to be the ones he needs most.....

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

The Unpredictable

"I think this has something to do with tangents"
Waiting for the bell with Ah Cheok in 5A

Didn't I warn you about being a teacher? Always be prepared for the unexpected!

In the morning, the first surprise was that all the teachers were present!!!! So, I escaped preparing the relief duty. Even my partner, Pn Nor Anisah couldn't contain her smile......

Later, I entered the hall, expecting the worst to happen. But, hell NO! My 5KJ were quietly doing Pendidikan Seni Visual SPM Trial Paper. There was a class , 5KM, doing Gerak Gempur (Math) at the same time. I just had to smile (with THAT smile) at them and the hall was all peace and quiet.

Vinod from 5KM (I taught him in 2005 and 2006) turned to me with a pleading expression.
"Teacher, do you mind showing me how to do this one? Maybe I didn't come to school when my teacher covered this topic".

"OK, I'll try. But first, take out your Maths reference book".

And so , suddenly, my Maths knowledge was put to the test and I managed to explain to him how to derive the answer. Just hope that he could remember the technique!

Very much later, about half an hour before school ended, I went to 5A; thinking "Ah, this is going to be easy". But, hell NO!

I thought I could admire RFuh's drawing but there was no peace. I also thought of asking NTHuan about her birthday today but she was not in school. I also thought of asking a student who's planning to buy a laptop whether he had read today's The Star InTech regarding 'Mini Wonders' (this is a must-read for him!) but the class was simply not conducive for a decent conversation.

I began to think that the hall was an easier place to handle! And so finally, as you can see above, I stood near the door, asking 2 questions (as part of my Aidil Fitri quiz). Ah Cheok seemed at ease before someone pointed out the fact that he would be in that photo.

Thank God, at 12.30 pm I was saved by the bell!

Monday, September 15, 2008

I Am Good, Mr N!

When I was in form 5, my form teacher (who was also my Physics teacher) asked us to disclose our little secret that was our ambition. I still remember that it took place in the Physics lab.

When my turn came, I was not really prepared but I thought why not I just mentioned something safe, that was I wanted to become a teacher. Wow! The effect was immediate! A resounding sound of laughter could be heard in the lab, even that teacher gave a cynical smile....he must have thought that I was teasing him. No, Mr N, in fact I had always been a level-headed person .... but it's too late to tell you now...

My class was full of intelligent girls who were very ambitious. Now many of them are professionals but they are humble and they keep a low profile. A few end up being teachers owing to the economic downturn in the late 1980's. But the only reason why I didn't choose teaching as a profession before was because my father (who was a teacher) really discouraged me from being one.

My answer to my form teacher was basically meaningless but now I AM a teacher.

It is a very satisfying profession if you don't mind dealing with cranky students and their unpredictable parents.

Many people thought they knew school inside and out just because they have been there....

No, actually you may have spent 5 years in a secondary school but you don't know much about education which takes place in a school.

As a reflective teacher, I have a number of things to suggest to the Ministry of Education (shall write about this next time). But for now, I just want to tell myself to pick up the new teaching skills which are essential in this era.

Certain clerical work must be reconsidered . Take for example, I started typing the minutes of the meeting at about 4.00 pm and finally now, at 10.30 pm I am able to say that my task is complete! Please use simple Maths to calculate the time spent
solely on this work, albeit my breaking fast and prayers,and 5 minutes of sms-ing; from 4.00 pm to 10.30 pm.

Fortunately, every one in my family is immune to my routine......No wonder only my youngest daughter thinks that teaching is cool!

Can Hardly Wait

The original plan was to attack the shopping complex(es) right after school and Aisyah had pledged support to this noble plan. It's sheer luck to have a daughter to be my accomplice.

But at 12.30 pm, both of us were in my room; she was busy answering some quizzes to be submitted to the Ustazah and I had to sit down, writing down my daily report , tomorrow's lesson plan, checking the teachers' attendance for tomorrow, checking the stuff to photostat, checking the Borang Penilaian Ko-kurikulum (just to make sure that my debaters will get the grades they deserve) and finally I checked my Big Pinky Book to see if anything else needed to be done by this week.

"What are we going to cook for breaking fast?", Aisyah broke the silence.

"Oh, gee! Could you please rephrase that question?"

"Yeah, are we stopping at the wet market to buy some fish afterwards?" (Aisyah didn't get it!)

So, that's it! She and her love for cooking. Whereas mum had the shopping complex in her mind....

Eventually, now it's 4.00pm and I am about to start typing the Minutes of Meeting , the television is on and Aisyah is watching it. Today's berbuka dishes are ready in the kitchen....It took us only 1 hour and 30 minutes to get everything done.

That shopping plan can wait......

Sunday, September 14, 2008

20 More Please

Mum to the rescue. Thank you!

My mum was really concerned that I still could not stretch out my hands as I used to.

As she is the 'best masseur' in our family, I didn't hesitate to let her give me the much needed treatment, even though it would be a miracle to expect an instant recovery...........

Her brief visit was a real blessing, as the pain had been quite a nuisance lately. Sometimes, I used to feel like shouting out loud (sol) in order to ease the pain. But, certainly, that is not my style. There are millions of people out there who are in a worse condition than I am. I guess, my body just needs another 2 months, and after that everything should be fine. On my part, I just need to take an extra care..... I might need it for the next 20 years.

Friday, September 12, 2008

I Am A Mum, Too!

My mum pacifying my niece (little Wahidah).
"Bye mum, I love you!". Friday tuition is more fun when he goes with a friend.

My mum just arrived from Alor Gajah, Melaka to be with me for a few days.

Every now and then, I am faced with friends (who are mothers) who want to know my opinion about raising children................come on, this is an art that is never taught in a formal education. But , to me, I take it seriously whenever a friend wants me to give my views on this matter.

I am a mother and I still have my mum , not forgetting a mum-in-law......Soon, I will have a D-I-L too!

I deal with this matter professionally, and we (my friends and I) are engaged in an animated discussion about 'growing pains'. Sometimes, it is the question of how much freedom should we let our children have? In most occasions, mums want to know how to motivate their children to be diligent. Among the many things which always interest me, is the question of how to mould our child into a responsible and reliable young person ?

Most of the time, I say that a child will become a somebody when you let him/her take charge of himself/herself. Smothering our children with attention can kill them! Similarly, they deserve our gentle (yet firm) words and also the touch of our hands.

But most importantly, parents must be the
role models to their children. Leading by example sends a clear message. Eg When on the road, at the traffic lights, parents should not run the red light. (Or in Malaysia , the term is 'beat the red light').

I make mistakes too, but this sort of mistake is a rarity and I don't wish to repeat the same offence!......'coz I am a mum, too!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Watch Out!

Real Date: THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2008

Habits die hard. Of course, you take out the 'h' and you are left with 'a bit'. Take away the 'a' and there is still 'bit' standing tall. Take out the 'b' and you will still see 'it', and you know that by getting out of it this way, you are constantly haunted by this 'habit'.

The moral of the story is, you simply have to chuck it out altogether! Yes, you heard me, you have to break it, yes, that's right..there's no turning back.

However, certain habits are harmless and could even give you an edge over the others. Take for example, the things you like doing while answering the exam questions.

Do you realise where exactly you place your
watch? Most students have it on their left wrist, while some, like Furqaan, Intan and Chloe; wear it on their right wrist. Some students like Aaron (with a mysterious-looking watch), Joel and Chew Wei, like to admire their watch by placing it on their desk, and for reasons best known to himself, a student of mine (LCH) likes to hide his watch in his bag! Actually, it's not a bad idea, after all!


The Secret of The Torn Batek

Oops, again, it's the time of the month where I should only wear red baju kurung.

But it's Thursday tomorrow. I won't have much choice 'coz only Batek can be worn on every Thursday.

Being the 'efficient' me, without delay I grabbed the only reasonable red batek I could find and took it to the laundry room , and there I spent my next few precious minutes ironing the batek that would be worn tomorrow.

Suddenly, something on the batek caught my attention!. I certainly despise this! A
torn batek, but the only red batek that I could find! Furthermore, this batek is just one year old!

I kept on ironing while mulling over my next course of action. After what seemed like ages, (with a sigh), I decided to just carry on with my original plan. My students would be busy answering the Agama/ Moral questions tomorrow and they would hardly look up, hence, that would save my day. It is also 30 minutes past midnight, so nobody would read this blog until school is over tomorrow....the secret is safe!

Deep down, I wish I lived just 100 metres away from Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman ! That reminds me that I should do my shopping as soon as possible, while the traders are eager to sell their stuff at low prices.

Yes, that batek is not very old. It is the same batek I wore on the day our school lost to SMK Darul Ehsan in the debate competition. Remember, "Organic Food Is Better Than Conventional Food"? It is an important event!!!! Since that day, I started to lose at least 6kg! Not a big number but enough to show what a great effect it had on me.... maybe that's what we call a blessing in disguise!

Certain old baju kurungs are worn again when I , out of the blue, become 'lighter'. I tell you, if I can fit into the baju below (again), I would hold a kenduri (thanksgiving) to celebrate this occasion.....

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Working After Sleeping Less Than 2 Hours

She will remember this day, one day in her life.
This is Pn Rachel, invigilating the SPM trial exams.
"Teacher, we want to be in the debate team!"
"Maybe, I get to lose weight doing this duty"
That, is the G Block!
'All in a day's work', what a cliche......

But on a September Nine, I had to get up as usual , dodging the fact that I had had only less than two hours of sleep, mind you, I didn't take any nap the day before!

My husband woke me up at 4.30 as usual so that this chef could make another version of fried rice. "Mak, this is the best fried rice this Ramadhan!" Oh, compliment again!

Before I went off to school, (with good feelings that I had prepared the relief duties at home), I took a snap with Naimah so that one day the photo would help her to reminisce about the day she sat for UPSR.

Invigilating the trial exams was a breeze because the SPM candidates were taking it seriously, at least, for today's English paper. While in the hall, I also had a chat with Pn Rachel about her progress after her surgery (she had hers about 10 weeks ago , but hers was a more serious one).

Not long after that, I was at the form 3 block, checking on the progress of the Optima Programme for the form 3 students. Jolene (F2), stopped me outside her class to introduce me to Siti Khadijah, another budding debater (her words, yet to be verified by my F5 Team).

Later, I went up the G Block (Levels 3 and 4) to do my daily observation. This is the new duty that I was assigned to immediately after I recuperated from my surgery. It sounded more like a 'welcome note', really! It came to my knowledge right after my friends , who were concerned about my early return, advised me to '
duduk diam-diam' (sit and rest) 'coz I still looked pale.

But as mentioned earlier, it is all in a day's work. What to do, maybe the coming bonus will bring a spark to my humble self? (do I sound materialistic?)

It is just me........OK, now, where's that essay written in such a beautiful handwriting? It's factual, this time....

Monday, September 8, 2008

SPM Trial Exams, UPSR and the Baby Boom

Good luck to all my 'children'!

I had my first child, Hasif in May 1991. Interestingly, most of my form 5 students were also born in the same year.

Another interesting fact is that my 4th child, Siti Hawa Naimah, was born in 1996 and she is going to sit for her first major exam which is UPSR, tomorrow.

In SEMEKAR alone, another 18 teachers are sharing the same experience, which is, each of them has a child sitting for UPSR. They are namely, (in random order) :
1. Pn Jamani
2. Pn NorMariha
3. Pn Nora
4. Pn Noraidah
5. Pn Fauziah
6. Pn Zarina
7. Pn Kartini
8. Pn Rani
9. Pn Rachel
10. Pn Noor Anisah
11. Pn Norhayati
12. Pn Harlina
13. Pn Zuraida
14. Pn Nor Rizan
15. Ustazah Rahimah
16. Datin Nachiamal
17. Ustaz Zulkifli
18. En Jamil

Wow! Imagine if in 1996, all the 17 woman teachers were teaching in the same school!

Sunday, September 7, 2008

To Err Is Human, To Correct An Error Is Divine!

To understand this post better, you need to read the post below, first. They are somehow inter-related.

Soft skills are simply vital in this competitive world. It helps you to get the message across subtly, thus depicting a mature, noble attitude that simply charms the other person you are dealing with.

The end result? A desirable one, in fact, if it is well-rehearsed, you can :
- secure an important project,
- or get a raise from your boss,
- or win a customer's heart
- and better still, win the heart of that person you are courting.....he/she will have no doubts whatsoever about you...

But it takes awareness, practice, sincerity and a good intention...

My lackadaisical attitude towards applying soft skills
was thankfully changed gradually, through my experience in dealing with the 'right' people, through reading and through getting hurt myself by others' hurtful actions and unintentionally 'unpleasant' remarks.

Eg When a person has taken the trouble sending an item through e-mail, just reply to it by acknowledging his effort. Just write "Thank you"

If the message is somehow lost(?), (e-mails are like that) , and the sender asks you "Have you received our photos? ", just answer by saying "Oh, I haven't received it. But thank you, I appreciate your effort."

It's a good start, is it not?

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Photos Are Important!

With my school basketball team in 1980.
Kak Gee, mum and my three younger brothers in 1982.
With Pn Lee SL, as soon as I knew about my transfer to SEMEKAR in December 2003.
With my English teacher, Ms Dale in 1984. Guess who is standing directly behind me?

I value photos very much.

As you can see, the first photo on top was sliced thoughtlessly because I was ignorant about its importance, at that time, that is.

One day, I will publish photos of my old friends in an effort to trace their whereabouts, they mean a lot to me!

He Who Dares, Wins.....

We were razed in the Computer Lab this morning. It was all because we left for the assembly ground more than 3 minutes late, during the fire drill.

It didn't feel right to ignore the shrilly ringing of the school bell, hence the interesting 'course' or briefing on the 'what and how' to take part in the ICT Website Competition (Teacher Category) by En Shah (as shown in the above pictures) had to make way for the fire drill.

I am going to be one of the many teachers who want to try their hands at building a website. It's not going to be easy, but as the saying goes:
'Just because something is difficult, does not mean you should not give it a try'.

Then why not?

SEMEKAR's Got Talent!

CMing Yeet and LRFuh the artists.
Anita and Aisyah from 5KJ are busy at work.
Wa'ie and gang from 1 Melati won the Merdeka Bubur Competition.
Intan, Yasmin and Sakinah are showing off their own masterpiece of the day.

"Look at those boys, they may be great athletes but they are empty upstairs"
These were the words uttered by an irresponsible adult about 14 years ago.... (I may be quite forgetful lately but I don't forget remarks such as this easily).

I can be quite a sensitive soul, but my sensitivity does not go awry, it is normally directed in the right direction and it is focused on relevant issues.

Please don't say that my students are useless, hopeless or good-for-nothing, or even intelligent but disrespectful? Don't just say that and put a full-stop to it. We adults must check ourselves, maybe we are just as irritating , .....well, I said 'may be' ...remember this clause.

Children are children. So, adults, it is our duty to mould them into a better generation. There's nothing to fear if they are special in their own way because they will take up different roles in the future and they will make an impact on the society, both locally and globally!

Friday, September 5, 2008

Future Bloggers

Today I decided to do my work in the staff room. I chose the area where the sofas were strategically placed, placing my laptop and my big blue bag beside me before I finally settled myself and started marking the students' answer scripts.

Only minutes had passed when Pn Mastura brought up the matter about Maxis Broadband. "Yeah", I said ," you should get one for yourself as it is cheap".

This conversation was later joined by Pn Ramlah, Pn Zuraidah, Pn Fauziah, Pn Norakmar, Pn Norhayati and Pn Anita, all future (and existing) bloggers who would like to take part in the coming ICT competition (Teacher Category).

Eventually, the discussion became quite heated. We exchanged notes and we were also planning to have a short course on websites.

Wah! I am happy about this progress. At least no student of mine can say that, "Our teachers
buta (are ignorant about) websites"

Confirmed! She's Expecting!

If you are reading this post, you are one of the first to know this latest news.

I remember that in all my pregnancies, all my babies had to go through the phase of Ramadhan. Actually, I was reminded of this when I vomited again in my bathroom this morning. It was definitely not my intention, it just happened!

At first I wasn't sure about disclosing the latest development, as usual, I could be secretive...Proven by what happened during my stay in the Selayang Hospital. Only readers of this blog were able to get the latest updates....

Anyway, if I disclose it to a student of mine, he might give me the look that says ,"Why are you telling me? Am I responsible?". Yeah, some people could start being nasty at the slightest provocation. Furthermore, the students are mostly walking zombies now as they are busy with their exams. So , why bother , anyway?

Oops, here comes my cat, Mamamiow, who is heavy and a bit lazy as she is carrying her latest babies. I guess through this blog I can proudly announce that Mamamiow is pregnant again, confirmed!


I must have pushed myself too far!

Last Wednesday's sahur (predawn meal) was a disaster. We got up late, past the 5.00 am mark.

Normally my husband wakes me up at about 4.30 am so that I could cook some fried rice and chicken nuggets. In fact, on certain days I can get up on my own at 2.00 am to complete my work before heading to the kitchen.

So, on that Wednesday, during the panic, I was having trouble with my memory. "Hey, where's the panadols?" You see, panadols are what I normally take to ease my pain these few days. As it was almost subuh (5.51 am), and we cannot consume anything after subuh, I had to resort to my painkillers, reluctantly.

Everything seemed normal until my head began to spin at 11.00 am. I was in the hall invigilating the Gerak gempur. As soon as Pn Kelly took over my duty, I went up to my room eagerly, thinking of what I should do next in my pathetic condition.

It was another one hour to the meeting between my boss and the Math, Science and English Language teachers, regarding the use of computer and LCD.

Guess the ending of this story?

I was nowhere to be found during the 2-hour meeting because I was overcome by the drowsy effects of the painkiller and I was actually snoring (not literally) on my office floor. Sorry boss!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

And So I Thought!

Another 30 minutes to breaking fast, Wednesday 3 Sept 2008.

My youngest daughter, Zainab liked to treat mum as her idol.

Q : "Zainab, why are you doing that?"
A : "Mak likes doing it this way".
Q : "Zainab, what do you want to become?"
A : "A teacher, like Mak".

Sometimes, she could be exaggarating too. Eg:
Q : "Zainab, why are you wearing such tight pants?"
A : "Mak also wears like this".

And so my perception was that Zainab was trying to be Haslina Junior. Whatever mum did was good to her.

Things took a turn, one day. (I am not very sure whether it is for the better or worse).

On Tuesday, 26 August Zainab came home, looking very determined when she entered my bedroom. At that time, I was still weak after the operation.

"Mak, please sign here, below my essay"


Out of curiosity, after signing at a space marked
'Dibaca oleh ibu:...', I read her essay. Let's read it together:

Cuti Sekolah.

Pada cuti sekolah yang lalu saya melawat ibu saya di Hospital Selayang. Ibu saya dibedah kerana ibu saya banyak lemak jadi itulah akibatnya sebab tak berjasmani.......

Oh gosh, I must have got the wrong message about being her idol!

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Angan Irau!

It is 10.00 pm, Tuesday 2 Sept 2008

My little girls were so engrossed in the net that they hardly noticed an avid photographer was at work, using her camera which could be described as her favourite tool.

These little girls' minds are as free as a bird, unlike their elder sister's (who is sitting for her UPSR), as well as their strict big bro's (who is sitting for SPM). What about their mother? Let others speak for her.... she doesn't do 'self-praising', ehem, whose words are these?

Angan irau! I pick up this expression after watching the 'Maybank' advertisement. It means DON'T WORRY!

So, my friends and my students,
angan irau too much ; to the extent that you sound as though you are giving me the cold shoulder, takutlah (it's creepy).........