Fun Project: The English Language Study Planner & Journal 2017

Assalamualaikum and good day. Today, I would like to share about a small project I am doing with my students. This year, we are doing The English Language Study Planner & Journal 2017. Now, those who are familiar with me know that I am an avid collector of notebooks, stationery, planner and journals. I plan my days and journal my experiences. Planning and journalling have encouraged me to become a more organised person. Read my rationale below or CLICK HERE to skip to the download links.

Why planning and journalling?

I am not pushing my interests blindly onto my darling students, nope. According to Walker (2006), journalling provides the clinical advantages of enhancing students’ ability to reflect, facilitating their critical thoughts, helping them to better express their feelings and guiding them to write more focused arguments. In short, students who dawdle in journalling are more likely to produce substantial essays. For this project, I have combined both planning (pre-lesson) and journalling (post-lesson) to maximise the expected benefits. Planning ahead, for instance, can help reduce one’s level of stress and help them to become more decisive when it comes to making decisions (Stack, 2000). I intend to let students jot down their feelings before and after each lesson as an emotional outlet for them – a small space for them to vent. Keeping feelings to oneself is detrimental (Blake’s Poison Tree, anyone?)

Who are the target students?

Students with intermediate proficiency level and little opportunity to practise their English. *There are separate project templates for lower and higher proficiency but that will be discussed later. I created this project with secondary school students in mind, so adjustments needed to be done if you intend to use the same template at primary or tertiary level.

What it the ultimate goal of this project?

My ultimate goal is to get my students to be familiar with writing brief statements with correct sentence structures. Sometimes when they journal, they will repeat familiar structures before they find the courage to venture into more complex structures. Rather than hoping they can write flowery essays overnight, I’d rather they write in simple sentences that are correct. Complex and long sentences do not automatically make them appear “more intelligent”, especially if they are laden with errors. (Did you know that writing sentences that are simple in structure but are grammatically correct will award a mark of higher than 28/50 in the actual SPM examination compared to long, winded writing with complex structures laden with errors?)

 

What do you need to edit the document?

  1. Avenir font (download) and Brusher font  (download) installed on your computer. Without this fonts, the documents may not look as fine.
  2. A PDF viewer if you’re downloading the PDF version -AND-
  3. Microsoft Word for Windows or Mac. The files are originally edited on Microsoft Word for Mac in the Publishing Layout View (third view option from the left).

Core Pages Download Links

  1. Cover page:  Study Planner - Cover Page (372) - 152.11 kB
  2. Study Pledge:  Study Planner - Study Pledge (363) - 137.79 kB
  3. Monthly Plan & To-Do’s:  2017 Monthly Student Planner (376) - 253.03 kB
  4. Daily Planner & Journal Page:  Study Planner - The pages (372) - 209.97 kB

Extra Pages (Coming Soon)

  1. Weekly Journal Prompts
  2. Monthly Reflection
  3. Holiday Planner & Journal Tasks
  4. Progress Tracker

Binding

I suggest using the sweet and simple Management Files. It’s cost effective and durable. I use Campap and A-Star brands with my students. This is a picture of how it looks in my student’s file:

Have fun teaching and thank you for checking it out! Leave a comment if you’d like to ask me anything. Here’s a flipthrough.

KSSM English Form 1 Teaching Organiser 2017

Hello everyone. I am not teaching Form 1 this year, but as a meticulous planner, Bujoer and English KSSM JU for PPD Pasir Mas, I feel compelled to create and share my version of the Teaching Organiser. Please check back for new uploads and updates. As I was involved with SPM marking that concluded on 22 December and then university matters the following week, I am a bit slow in picking up the pace. Better late than never, tho, right? This blog entry will house my KSSM Teaching Organiser files and other related uploads. Feel free to bookmark this page 🙂 Click on the file name OR the button to download.

 1. Teaching Organiser Week 1-3 (With Page Cover and Usage Notes) (4859) - 339.1 kB  Download

2. Teaching Organiser Week 4 - 6 (3872) - 185.07 kB  Download

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An Elevation of Viewpoints; A Day for Teachers

May 16, 2011. I celebrated my first ever Teacher’s Day as a real teacher today. It was a very colourful day, filled with laughter and games and well, food (not that I care about food). I spent the day going around taking photos of pretty much everything to commemorate my first celebration (as well as to fill my virtually empty folio with something more colourful although nobody needs to know how empty it actually is -_-), changing into a pair of slacks and t-shirt just before the morning session was taken over by mini-games. Sukaneka, of course. Timeless classics such as the musical chair and taking turns to fill bottles with water were present. Teachers who took part were very enthusiastic. I had fun watching them giggle and fight for the chairs until the very last.

It felt different. Celebrating Teacher’s Day as a teacher, that is. The celebration was completely organised by students – hall decorations, gifts, programmes… I can’t remember if I was ever that efficient when I was their age. From the moment I got off my car, the air of celebration was already set up, injected with elements of fun from colourful decorations here and there. I wonder how I felt when I was a student.

Today, I celebrated Teacher’s Day from an elevated viewpoint. When I was a student, I was very excited to give presents to all of my subject teachers. I wanted them to feel happy and appreciated. Now that I’m teaching, I found myself struggling to find words to say to students who came to tell me “Teacher, I’m sorry I don’t have money to give you anything. Can I give you something next week?” It was very touching. I realised that as a teacher, I don’t expect my students to give me anything. I’m very touched when a few students who come from very low financial backgrounds wrapped freshly picked flowers from home and bars of soaps to give as presents.

I used to feel bad when I couldn’t give nice gifts to my teachers. Now that I’m teaching, I don’t want them to feel like I did back then. Students feel pride when teachers accept their offerings, so I told the ‘grieving’ children who didn’t bring any gift to not feel sad. I told them to give me the best present they could give me, but one that they cannot buy with money -a good grade. Nothing makes me happier than hearing my students speak in a complete sentence. At least ONE complete sentence. The sense of accomplishment is way different from receiving gifts.

To my students, thank you for all the colourful gifts. I appreciate each and every one of them. There is no need for you to feel ashamed or down because for me, a gift is a gift even if you give me a box of white chalks or a single pencil. It’s the thought that counts. Teacher’s Day is a day for teachers, so make your teachers happy by coming to school and wishing them a Happy Teacher’s Day with a bright, sincere smile on your face =)

Until next year.

Mists are only pretty in prose and poetry

Once upon a time, one of the best medicines for me was writing. When I was sad, the pages of my diary would be filled from left to right, top to bottom. When I started blogging in 2000, I began to keep electronic diaries. Some were stored in the form of HTML pages, which I still keep until today. I was once a very active writer hiding behind pseudonyms because I have no confidence, only watching in silent pride when words from the bottom of my heart made their ways onto the pages of the newspapers. I used to take pride in my poems, songs, short stories, and even my musings.

I’m constantly feeling sad now; I don’t know if I should blame the weather or myself for making me feel like this. All I know is that I should really pick up writing again after a long time. Maybe I will be calmer that way, InsyaAllah. I believe this is the first blog entry after being called a teacher officially now, no? I’m a bit excited to write.

360 degrees twists and turns: The road to my school is a long winding one. There isn’t a day when I don’t feel like “Is this the day I die?” when I go to school every morning. I drive approximately 52km to and fro every day, going at 60~110km (usually 85km constant). My car eats up around RM250~300 worth of fuel per month, not counting the itty bitty maintenance bits. Well, that’s parts and parcel of working, I guess. Sometimes, I am envious of those who can walk to school and those who can reach school within 10~5 minutes because they honestly save a lot. If they complain, then obviously they aren’t grateful enough (or they’re just greedy and lazy, idk).

I couldn’t see oncoming cars because of narrow roads and sharp turns. Huge trucks are everywhere, every day. When I’m almost late to school (as in I have 20 more minutes to punch in before the print is red on my punch card), it’s natural that I would be very annoyed if I had to drive at 40km/h. Yet, there are rocks, red soil that could challenge the grip of your tyres, sometimes small streams of water (after a night of rain or when it’s raining) or even dirt-water pools, trucks going at 30km/h, motorcyclists using the roads as if they own them, etc etc. Sometimes, I just had to overtake the vehicles in front of me even though the road was too small, praying I’d be okay.

Thick, thick mists: We seldom drive with the high-beam on unless we’re leading the way at night where there aren’t any street lamps. Otherwise, we could incur the wrath of people driving on the other side of the road -_-” The situation is different with my usual route to school. The mist is so thick; I can barely see anything every morning. The fields to the left and to the right of the highway would be completely white and impenetrable. Using high-beam is a must to survive the journey. Every now and then when the clock shows time after 7.10am, there would be ignorant oncoming cars with their headlamps off. Overtaking is made impossible even if you’re going at 30km/h in this situation. They may have magnificent visions able to penetrate the thick blankets of mist, but I don’t. Most of us don’t. Even more annoying when you see oncoming cars overtaking the road, missing your car narrowly by less than 10 meters or so before assuming their right lane. I was going at 90km/h when this happened once. You can probably guess how scared I was.

So, yes. 6.30am when I start the engine, I’d be saying prayers after prayers while my brain would ask the usual question: “Is this the day I die? God, please don’t let this be the day.” Along the way, my treacherous brain would conjure up visions of how my loved ones would react in the aftermath of my passing. Well, let’s not jinx the ‘d’ word. My parents – my Mom especially would be more than just devastated. My beloved male counterpart, I try not to think about it at all. You know how painful it is to imagine a faceless person replacing yourself, standing next to your beloved. I pray for my safety. Pray for mine too? *winks*

Sometimes I cry while I drive to school. Sometimes I play the mp3s at very high volume until the motorcyclists look at my car like it’s a UFO. Well, that’s life I guess. Until the next entry~