The Exploration of Past, Present, Future

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Compilation of thoughts



Life has a way of passing you by without you being aware that it's come and gone. Well, I've been meaning to update my blog for some time and today is the day!

Steve Jobs' Stanford Commencement Speech

Great speech indeed! Sadly, it also brings out the contrast between the Americans' and Singaporeans' attitudes towards failure as well as ability to cope with challenges that come our way. I've put up a transcript & ZIP file of the speech. Unfortuantely, for such an inspirational speech, Ive uploaded it in a most uninspiring manner. I shall resolve this after learning Dreamweaver.

Microteaching

First of all, I would like to say that it was very brave of you to be the first one up for microteaching. Limited time and with no guidelines/models before you, I have to say that it was quite a good job that you have done in that you tried your best to control the students and get the lesson moving on despite the disruptions.

Observing Chan Ying's lesson also brought to front the usual problems that teachers face when conducting a lesson.

Time Management/Lesson Plans

- For my EL lesson today, we covered lesson plans and one of the issues raised by one of my classmates was why was it necessary to indicate the time for each aspect that you are trying to cover. After all, if a certain activity is very well received, arent we as teachers allowed the leeway to actually make changes on the spot? On the other side of the coin, if the students are not behaving well, do we still carry on with an activity that is fun and thereby sending out the message that it is ok to be rowdy?

Personally, having done contract teaching (without a lesson plan and time management), I am able to contrast the way I taught then with the way I taught when I had to follow the time frame in the lesson plan during the school experience. I realised that with no time management, I tend to ramble on and on alot, especially on a specific point that I felt was important. As a result, lessons sometimes ended dangling, with no resolution. With a time frame however, I found myself being more conscious of the amount of time I was spending and it gave more focus. Having said that though, I have to say that lesson plans are a pain in the ass :P

Organisation (of class and lesson)

- another ulcer in the mouth situation. Especially when you think that the students understand the instructions that you have given. That is not always the case however. So I guess the question is how do we make our instructions clear? That was most evident when I was giving instructions to the class on a group activity and I thought I was making lots of sense but the students were all *blank* and did not know what to do.

How about the lesson? How do we make organise and make links that helps students understand key concepts? I will never forget the time when I had to teach map reading to a sec 2 express class. I used various methods, organised my lessons differently and explained in as clear a manner as I thought I could. I explained till the cows came home, throat as dry as a desert, veins, arteries and capillaries almost popping, perspiring like a waterfall and stinking to high heavens.

Results : half the class failed while the other half was bored stiff cause I kept repeating things they had already grasped

Needless to say, that was a huge blow to my self esteem and self confidence.

Podcasting

I'm still using ancient Windows 98 (out of choice cause I feel that it's more stable + I refuse to give Microsoft more money for a different version of a same product)

However, looks like I will have to succumb soon looking at how this antique OS cant support iTunes, Dreamweaver trial version and god knows what else. Anyway, before I reformat and reinstall XP, I thought I better try and get my hands dirty with the initial steps of podcasting in case something goes wrong and my PC goes kaput! At least there's some backup stuff. Not sure if I'm doing this right though... so here's 2 test clips...

Test Podcast 1
Test Podcast 2

Ok, gotta go sleep... been staying up too late too often... stoning in class!!!

3 Comments:

  • At 1:01 PM, Blogger voyager said…

    brillant!

    it works!

    let us know once you have updated your OS and we'll work on that RSS feed :-)

    just one last step and you're done :-)

     
  • At 6:55 PM, Blogger Hermit said…

    Hey gal!

    Thanks for giving me the idea of uploading into the geocities web. Haha... never crossed my mind.

    Anyway, if u wanna put music into ur podcast, use Audacity freeware located at http://audacity.sourceforge.net/ . It's a small download and works great.

    Just a small caution... don't use more than 30s of an original song cos i think they have some copyright law or something... not sure abt it but just have to cover our ass (pardon the expression)right?

     
  • At 9:07 AM, Blogger zenlim said…

    Yozz, I tried to listen to it but the server is down. Must it be u online than I can listen?
    Anyway, I tried. U come my hse and fix my pc cuz i cant hear anything!! :(

     

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