DPM: Don’t burden teachers with irrelevant jobs

DPM’s speech regarding teachers’ bunrnout: read here

    As a Mignonne in this education world, I am delighted to see this article published in DPM’s facebook note.

For your information, we have pretty rough time juggling school errands and playing other roles as well.

    As a human, we deserve a conducive working environment. We deserve to be treated equally. We need some time to de-stress and recharge my energy so that I can work as optimum as I can the next day. I have to be honest here. My weakness of unable to handle my stress have resulted poor immune system. Hey. I want to work. Not to be sick. For a record, most of my Saturdays have been taken up and once or twice a month, I applied for MC. Such a shame. I’m supposed to contribute something to the country, innit? But due to my workload, I’m stressed.

    My creativity has been castrated due to the workload. I rarely write poetry nowadays. I didn’t go to musical or theater for 2 years. I didn’t read much book as I was used to. The only time I can read book when I was on my way back to Perak. The bus journey takes 8 hours and I benefited my time by reading. I travel back to my hometown in Perak during school holidays only. Once in a blue moon. (My mom is living alone and she is 51 years old, imagine the heartache I have when we are far). Recently, the Jabatan Pelajaran Negeri announced “NILAM” for teachers. What is it about? Courses and seminars aim to equip teachers with decent and updated knowledge about teaching profession. However, as we all know, too much funding goes to the Sekolah Berprestasi Tinggi, millions go to overseas students, and not to mention the national mega projects. Hence, no more fund can be allocated for teacher’s professional development. Come to think of it, when do we have time to read?

    Here’s my routine:

    • 5.00/5.30 Wakes up
    • 6.00 Bath, subuh, make coffee for husband, iron tudung(have to do all these in a rush)
    • 6.30 Goes to school
    • 7.00 reach school, starts EW20 program or Citra Bahasa or Radio Sekolah
    • 7.20 Assembly
    • 7.30 Class started
    • 9.00/9.30 Breakfast or else there will be no other time to eat. Need energy to teach the hyperactive class.
    • 1.00 Class ended, lunch, solat zohor.
    • 1.30 Monday-Prep for Buddy Support System, Tue-Meeting, Wed-Co-curricular, Thu- Meeting/Latihan
    • 5.30 Go back home. Usually other people can go back early beacuse they have their own transport but my hubby insist me being a car-less person, I stay at school longer than anyone else. Extra stress mark for me. Ting! Even the afternoon teachers dah tak larat nak tegur “Tak balik lagi?”
    • 6.00 /6.30 Reach home or hubby’s office, shower, asar.
    • 7.00 Prep for dinner, maghrib.
    • 8.00 Start working for paper work, need to send it A.S.A.P the next day/ book marking/ exam paper marking. *30 minutes de-stress by surfing internet.
    • 12.00/1.00 Iron baju, prep for tomorrow, laundry (leave my laundry in the auto machine, hang it out tomorrow)

    I don’t have time to go for retail therapy. I missed quite a number of good movies. I don’t go out meeting people. Becoming more depressed as hubby come home late (3/4am, sometimes 5am). I have no one to talk to. Hubby warned me because of my expensive phone bill. Sad thing I move from Perak to Johor 🙁

      Lately, there are many articles written about teacher’s workload. Fact#1 , most of insane asylum inhabitants are used to be teachers at school. Fact #2, 10 patients undergoing chemotherapy at the hospital were teachers (source: the star) . The real truth, many family members of teachers are receiving less attention and love.


      1. Teachers are the assets of the country. How many more will be sacrificed to asylum and cancer ward?
      2. How many more pupils’ education development will be sacrificed in class, due to teacher’s fatigue and burnout?
      3. If more smart teachers are slaughtered in teaching profession (be it career change, asylum, etc.) , what will become of our education standard?

      More reading regarding similar issue:

      1. Confession of a Cikgu
      2. The real truth about teaching by Tasneem Muhammad
      3. Bila guru luah rasa by Wahid Hashim
      4. Jealous? Come and stay here in pedalaman by Fazlin Farieza
      5. Ever wonder I get paid more than average teacher? by Ah Kam

      How do I have time writing this? I abandon my exam papers. 210 sets. 50% done but I cannot mark when I am emotional. Pity my students who are going to receive “emotional” mark from me.

      PS: Indonesia have come up with an organization to study about teacher’s workload years ago. Maybe we can learn something from them.

    My story with 5 Puteri 5

    It is almost a year, I’ve been teaching. Wah. Rasa macam tak percaya. I managed to survive.

    I really feel satisfied today. The kids in 5 Puteri 5 who used to be: extremely naughty, suka menjawab, kurang asam, kuat bergaduh sampai berdarah patah²;  heard my lecture today. What a miracle!

    I did conventional classroom management. I yelled and scolded them. I solved their fight. I told them to go to GB at first, but then I changed my mind (because GB is extremely mad with them today, takut rotan patah je). I punished them and told them not to behave like ‘serkap jarang’. They listened. Thank god. After that, I gave them tips on answering Paper 1 English. Imagine, those kids yang tak pernah berminat nak belajar, always played at the back of the class, pulled their chairs towards me and listened to me. Iwaslike, “Is this real?”

    There’s this boy who didn’t even write a letter in English Paper 2 said “Teacher, saya nak belajar tution English dengan teacher kat rumah boleh?”

    I answered “Hmm, tak cukup ke kat sekolah Harith? Awak kan tak suka kelas saya”

    “Tak la teacher, lain sikit”

    Homg. He’s interested to learn my subject. Bukan senang. Even nak buat ayat in BM pun takes a million years for them.


    Then, I took them to music room, where they can sing their heart out. They sang Ten Little Indian, Twinkle Little Star and many more. It’s after exam. Moreover, they like to sing (especially lagu Lucky Laki). I wouldn’t want to bore them with conventional teaching and learning.

    I found it satisfying, teaching the last class. I found is so satisfying, when I managed to make them listen to me. I found it satisfying, when they learned a few English words and songs. I just need to tackle their heart. 😉

    Different story with the advanced class. I found it awkward, entering a class that is so quiet, like a grave. They’re smart enough. I scratched my head, thinking what to teach them since they are already equipped with sufficient knowledge.Even when I taught them new thing, I don’t find it a big triumph teaching them, compared to my 5 Puteri 5.

    It wasn’t easy to have this content feeling. Before this,  I cried, stressed out, and I almost gave up, not knowing how to teach these kind of pupils. I finally got it. It’s really worth it. For all my teacher-friends out there, keep on trying and stick to teaching profession. You don’t know whose life you’ve changed.

    B.Ed TESL finally~

    My friends find it weird. I did not get the first class degree but I am in ultimate happiness. I don’t know where it comes from. But I would like to express my gratitude to god for enabling me to get through thick and thin of my study years. Alhamdulillah.

    I have finished my study officially alhamdulillah. Couldn’t wait for my graduation day. And I’ve celebrated it with my friends at Tupai Tupai in Jalan Bellamy, KL.

    Pikshures: Click here.

    Today’s student vision

    There are numbers of people who choose to be students, which means more competition. Less chances and opportunities. More stress and work to do. Thank you to Michael Wesch, Assistant Professor of Cultural Anthropology from Kansas State University (KSU) for the brilliant video.

    Do join the discussion on mediatedcultures.net/ksudigg/

    Useful articles for teachers

    I stumbled these great articles and I would like to share it with teachers or teacher trainees.

    1. NQT (Newly qualified teacher) starting guide.
    2. Positive classroom management

    All credits should be given to: Secondary teachers (September, 2007. No. 52)

    More details on www.teachernet.gov.uk

    PS: Uh oh, I’m taking note of this recipe. My name is honoured in her blog’s entry title.  

    PMS (bukan program MSM)

    I believe there are many medical notes about it. So, google it. Read it for the sake of world’s peace. So, the things that can help to reduce the symptoms are as such:


    • Eating a balanced and nutritious diet (cannot, sehari ada 3 open houses)
    • Eating smaller and more frequent meals (cannot! open houses means lotsa food)
    • Reducing the consumption of sugar and salt (cannot!! malaysian food got lotsa that)
    • Cutting out alcohol and caffeine (I just bought caffeine lipstick and drink teh tarik power root, so cannot)
    • Taking regular exercise (cannot lah! no time)
    • Supplementing the diet with vitamin B6, calcium, magnesium and zinc (what’s that?)
    • Sleeping properly (lagi cannot!! dissertation means no proper sleep you know)

    Then, how? Astaghfirullah. I don’t ask to be like this oke. It’s part and parcel of being a women. La taghdob. I know. But just can’t. Halp!!




    Untuk maklumat mengenai PMS program MSM, sila lawat website ini.

    Also, if it does not interest you enough, can read again my entry on it.

    Emo: language and literature

    Assalamualaikum. Peace to be upon you. Currently I am doing dissertation on nursery rhymes and this entry will explain why on earth I take this matter seriously. Being in Malaysia, you cannot resist the heatwave of the media. I watch kids’ show on TV9 (tagline: dekat di hati), on one fateful day. The famous shows that I watched: Dora the Explorer and Blue’s clues. However, in Malaysian, they were dubbed to Malay language. I am a person who is concern about language and kids’ language development.Also, my beloved mother tongue, Bahasa Melayu Malaysia (different from bahasa Melayu Indonesia). Right, you can consider this as an open letter to TV9 as well. No problem at all. Oh, call me monyet or pondan whatsoever. My job here is to give a lesson.

    I am not sure on what purpose they dubbed the shows. I do support the ideas of ‘mother tongue as the foundation of education’ and ‘cintailah bahasa kita’. It’s not that I go against the idea of dubbing it to Bahasa Melayu Malaysia. Imagine if you heard this:

    Dora: Mari kita tolong Pigmy Marmoset mengutip sap pokok!

    I was quite blur when they mention “sap pokok”. I thought hard. I thought it was Malay word but it was not. From Cambridge Dictionary, the definition for sape is: the liquid that carries food to all parts of a plant. Simply in Malay language, “sap pokok” is “getah pokok”.The translation given by TV9 actually makes young viewers more confuse actually. Even as an adult I was very confuse really. Plus, quite a weird thing when they didn’t change some spanish words.

    Nevermind. It’s not much an issue. Just a word anyway. Then I watched Blue’s clues. Steve was hunting treasure using Blue’s clues. Nice at first. Then Blue gave Steve a picture.

    Steve: Tengok ini kawan-kawan. Gambar Little Miss Muffet. Apa kita nak buat dengan Little Miss Muffet?

    LMM: Tolong saya selesaikan teka-teki ini. Little Miss Muffet, duduk atas bukit, makan dadihnya. Kemudian datang…

    (Picture of 3 animals, obviously I can’t remember the other 2 as I love the spider :P)

    Again, my brain was puzzled. It doesn’t rhyme at all. Are they trying to tell young Malaysians to translate English traditional nursery rhymes as well? I’m so sorry. This is not right. We should learn it as it is. According to its context. Please do not translate a nursery rhymes for Malaysian children’s sake!

    Then Steve found another clue.

    Steve: Tengok ni. Ini Jack. Masih ingat Jack? Mari kita tolong Jack.

    (Jack was wearing his pyjamas and hat)

    Me: Who’s jack? Is there any character in Blue’s clues named Jack?

    Steve: Adik-adik tahu apa yang Jack perlu lakukan?

    (There was a picture of 3 objects)

    Then I remembered. It’s the character in Mother Goose nursery rhymes!

    Jack be nimble, Jack be quick, Jack jump over the candle stick.

    Oh, my, god. I couldn’t imagine how Malaysian children perceive it. The reason we learn nursery rhymes, without alteration is because of history, culture and language pattern. Those who are not exposed to nursery rhymes during childhood basically have weak foundation in reading. OK! no time for explanation for this time being. Will just post my dissertation copy once I’m finish with it.

    Anyhow, I am looking for a way to complaint to TV9. Anyone has any contact? Do leave it in my comment box. Bahasa jiwa bangsa.