Trisha Reloaded

Dedicated to Trisha, as always. Dedicated also to L, my source of inspiration, and the reason why I choose to see the bright side of teaching.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Faint signal

Several people have asked me if I'm still alive in cyberland, or if I have migrated my blog to some secret hideout.

"Blog fatigue," I told them.

I'm simply exhausted. But not to the extent where I'll shut down my blog - yet.

I'm just sending out a faint signal for now, to say that I'm still here, still teaching, still trying to be super-mum. Still trying to stay sane in the midst of the O level results frenzy, setting targets for this year's graduating students, counseling students, and trying my darndest to stay motivated and uplifting in this crazy world.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

On another note, to those who lambasted the famous Principal who gave her now immortal words to her Sec 5 students, perhaps this quote may make you think a bit about another possibility which is not necessarily better:

"We schoolmasters must temper discretion with deceit." Evelyn Waugh

I shall not say more. It is a tough job trying to motivate kids who don't want to study. Let those who have tried teaching a neighbourhood school cast the first stone.


At 6:53 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Welcome back. Missed you. Like your analogy of casting the first stone. Everyone claims to be an expert on teaching cos everyone has been a student before - in the past - where there were no N-levels. I guess that is where the problem lies.

At 4:49 AM, Blogger Ensui said...

Good to see you blogging again, albeit its just one post. :)

I'm currently doing a few projects that involves schools. When i walk past the classrooms, its quite nostalgic and awe-spiring to see the teachers motivate the students.

Good luck with your work! Try and stay sane. :)

At 7:38 AM, Anonymous Germs said...

Earth calling Pluto. Earth calling Pluto.
ohh.... u got my msg! Wow.
:) Nice to hear from u.
Couldn't quite make out what the (in)famous principal said but i could imagine that it was along the line that my mum would have said in my school days:
"If u don't study hard, u will end up sweeping the streets".

An earlier version (when i still believe her) was "Mata, mata (Police) come & bring u to jail if u don't study"

At 6:38 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I hope you're ok though :)
I've never taught in the neighbourhood school but I believe she should NEVER have told the kids that.

At 6:41 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Haha, great to see you back online.

Sometimes there is a need to let this non-serious students to realise the stark realities they are in, but probably in a different set of tone. i believe there are successful cases, but in a different tone, one that is motivating and encouraging, but yet serious.

At 9:33 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello teacher. Glad to hear from you again. Been asked often ..which schools my children should go to & I always say..actually any one & I pray he or she gets a good teacher for the subjects taught. Its afterall my own experiences that make me think that way :)

At 5:34 AM, Blogger The Ego One said...

Hi Trisha
welcome back...
hope u will get out of the blogging fatigue soon.
things have been pretty quiet on the teachers blogging front.... :(

At 9:32 PM, Blogger singaporeteach said...

Hi Trisha,
I taught in mission schools and am now teaching in a neighbourhood school. My view is both schools have equal number of unmotivated students.
I had it worse in one of the mission schools because a few of the parents held the view of "love education" whereby we couldn't be too harsh on the kids. Reprimanding their children in class was wrong. We had to bring the child out to speak to the child in private.
It was a the worst battle I fought. However, it was this class that I remember best because I worked through them. I am still in contact with a few of them though they are now in JC/Poly. :)
Secondary school is tougher than primary school for sure. I know because some of the P6 pupils I have taught were behaving like teenagers. Hang in there.
A teacher who reflects like you is what we need. Hang in there.

At 12:26 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

say what you will, but there is NEVER any justification for pigeon-holing/labelling any student no matter what their level of ability. The principle, as an educator should have known better.

At 3:06 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I resigned after more than 13 years of teaching in a neighbourhood school. I left as I didn't want it to kill my passion in teaching. Passionate teachers teaching in neighbourhood schools have the hardest because senior management are not interested in teaching. They're interested in getting their performance bonuses. So, it is deceitful that MOE advertises for passionate teachers. The next point which I think 90% of teachers agree is the system. The perfornance ranking system is the root cause of all the evils. The good news is that each year at least 1000 teachers resign from schools. I suspect the number is higher at 3000ish. I think it's the fact that they are recruiting AEDs that we see a lower number cited for teachers leaving service. Singapore Education Statistics. At present, MOE says it's recruiting at least 900 teachers who resign each year. That works out to about 2-3 teachers per school in Singapore. But it seems more like 3-4 given the observations in schools. It's not just those who completed their 3 year bonds who leave. It's now those more than 5 years who are leaving. You're seeing more and more second career guys coming in to make for a younger fraternity. The average number of teaching years of experience in Singapore is 8 years. Then, teachers leave. In other countries, US: 20 years and Japan 22 years. It is likely that the recruitment of second career guys into teaching serves to recruit more people because the economy is bad.


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