Thursday, June 23, 2016

It is to be acknowledged...

...that I have terrible work ethic. I procrastinate. That is the be all and end all of my problem.

As much as I'd like to think I'm amazing and did my final year project on my own, I know I absolutely didn't. So here's my official thanks (as written in the report) and some unofficial ones (which I could not afford to put in..)

Before all else, praise be to my heavenly Father who through Christ has granted me the deepest of mercies and grace. I am humbled by His continuous favour with Him and with men, even when I least deserve it. Throughout these four years, I have experienced His joy in which I draw strength to do all things.
 My sincerest of thanks to my supervisor, Mr. Mohammad Sidik bin Ariffin, for his kindness and graciousness to me, the procrastinator to beat all procrastinators. Your advice and encouragement have been a great reassurance to me amidst the struggle of overcoming this last hurdle of my tertiary education. I am truly appreciate your consideration and care.
I cannot neglect to thank the wonderful individuals I have met in SMK Seksyen 18, Shah Alam, from the principal Mdm. Siti Khadijah bt Awang Seman, to our afternoon session Mdm. Rohana bt Jaapar, and Mdm. Syarifah Elfalina Kurnia bt. Syed Sagoff, my mentor teacher. I am indeed fortunate to have met a circle of supportive educators who are truly sincere, dedicated and passionate about their practice, and it has only fuelled my motivation and drive to excel in the education sector. My thanks as well to my students who had me at their mercy, but chose to be gracious to this newbie anyway.
To my friends who were willing to put up with this sometimes serious, sometimes crazy, and all times weird individual: Lydia Wan, Lily Lim, and Chuan Teik Min. While we certainly spent a lot of time having fun together, I also deeply enjoy the equal amount of times we collaborated and supported one another. Special thanks to Hii Wei Wei, the Lady Boss, and Loi Sook Mei, my procrastinating comrade. I have learnt a lot from all of you, and I aim to surpass the high bars your examples have set.
I save the last for those closest to my heart. To my mother and father, thank you for teaching me the word “perseverance” before “talented”. If there is a limit in the latter, there is none in the former. To my brothers, who worry and tease me; I am not sure why you should be on this list, but I guess family ties do not have to make sense. And to Darren, my kindred spirit, who lights up the late nights. I love all of you deeply.

And the unofficial thanks: I owe a lot of my motivation to ONE OK ROCK, specifically their 2014 Mighty Long Fall concert at Yokohama Stadium. Nothing is better than sitting down and typing to the sounds of a 2 hour long concert. It sounds too good for me to be distracted by toilet breaks or other things that need me to get up. It was also a great way to gauge my work time. In all seriousness, this whole concert helped to get me typing more than anything.

Here's the concert if you have 2 hours to spare..

Also, a final note after reflecting on my experience doing this research: Anything looks good in a hard cover.

look at that shine. much professional. many clever. wowe. 

How do I put it without sounding arrogant or overtly humble or ...trying to seek for praise? hmm. Well, I did put effort into that report there. I think I certainly wrote as well as I could have, and I tried to be as true to the data I gathered as possible. However, I'm also incredibly aware that this work....isn't ...phenomenal.

Of course, how can it be? Between juggling teaching in a school for the first time, dealing with other school activities, how can I actually be capable of producing a noteworthy study at my first try? No to the way. Not me anyway. Add to that the haze holidays, the school's change of schedules for other events, my own inexperience in doing any form of practical research (no Hannah, that Form 6 research...kinda helped, but doesn't count). So that work bound with a hard cover and printed with beautiful gold letters isn't fantastic. I know that research-wise, it'd be a laughing-stock. Heck, I laugh at it sometimes (and then cry).

This understanding has led me to a decision. I know many expect me to naturally head to doing a masters, and I can see why. It's just a Thing-To-Do these days, isn't it? A degree doesn't cut it anymore.

Unfortunately, I'm also here to acknowledge that I don't see myself doing masters right away. Not after this experience.

I just can't bring myself half-assing another research again. I want to do it properly next time. And for that to happen, I need experience. I need to actually know what it takes to teach. Not just grades on a piece of paper, or dean's list certs.

Teaching isn't defined by those.

If there's one thing I've found out in university (and I'm phrasing this very briefly here, because I think this is a whole other issue for another time), is that you can get away with many things if you're slightly well-read, and slightly more fluent in your language. I know many are impressed by my command in English, but for me, it's natural. I've been speaking English all my life at home, interacting in mainly English all my days. English is my first language. Add my bookworm household, my minuscule debate training and my googling past-time, and anything can sound somewhat good from my mouth.

look at this girl. many cray. much silly. genius? nopes. nopity-nope. 

I know myself though. And I know I'm having things way too easy. Way, way, too easy. I can see this when I look at my other brothers struggle in private institutes (one in Singapore, MAN THAT PLACE is a pressure cooker). I can see it when I interact with people from other countries and they tell me about the stuff they're doing (at a much younger age). I'm too sheltered, too pampered. The real world will chew me up and spit me out. Teach? what do i know.

Errrrrrr....where was I going with this? I had a point.

The only master programme I feel confident doing right now is literature. The question is, do I really need to do a masters in that? For what? Self-gratification probably. For an education one though, I need to try my hand at teaching first. Properly. So that I can find a proper topic to research on.

Basically, I've been thinking a lot about this quote, from Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix:

'George,' said Fred, 'I think we've outgrown full-time education.
''Yeah, I've been feeling that way myself,' said George lightly.
'Time to test our talents in the real world, d' you reckon?' asked Fred.
'Definitely,' said George.
I feel that way myself. Except I know I will be having a harder time than the twins. Haih. Hopefully I can balance it as well as I can balance that report on my head.