Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Be A Hero In Our Own Story

Many times I see people who are stressed out, unhappy, overwhelmed, angry and afraid.  I have to ask myself "What isn't working?" Then I see people who are happy, self-aware, and enjoying their life. I have to ask myself again, "What is working?" The interesting thing is, from outward appearances, there is no reason really as to who is happy and who isn't. Lack of money is blamed for many ills; however, I have met a number of people who have no money and are full of life and love without stress. So money obviously is not the key. I meet people who blame the people they love for their woes; however, I have met people who are not in relationship who are happy and content. So whether you are in a relationship or not is not the key either.

The one common denominator that is shared by all of the happy people and lacking in the unhappy people is a sense of self, the acceptance of who they are. The happy ones do not want to be different; they do not want their life to be different. They are enjoying what they have and don't care about what they don't have. They understand that they are constantly growing and changing. They are doing the best they can and that is good enough. They do not look for validation outside of themselves.

Basically, our story is whatever we believe about ourselves to be true. We can be victims of our childhood suffering from emotional scars; or we can forget all of our baggage from the past and focus on who we are right now. Our story is whatever we want it to be. The biggest story of all is whether we are happy or not; whether we are the result of our past or the creation of what we believe to be true. Whenever someone asks "tell me about yourself" or "who are you?" The answer is "MY STORY." Our past is only the training ground to be the hero of our story. If we are happy, we are the heroes. When we suffer, we are not.

Where we are is the result of all our past decisions. Who we are is the result of the decision we make from one moment to the next. Probably the most valuable asset we have is our smile. When we can smile in the face of challenges and fear, we will always win and be happy. When we can smile through pain and despair, we are the hero.

Wednesday, 17 August 2011


Twigs are amusing & adventurous stick creatures who live in knotholes of ancient trees. When climate change threatens their old forest, Twigs stick together to survive!

Prickly and stickly as they may be,
These branches rest in eternity,
Renewing the very, very soil they used to be,
To give inspiration,
To a brand new greenery...
Faces of Twigs...

                                                                                                 twig tiara


unusual & amazing
furniture made of twigs

halloween twig centrepiece

rustic twig ball bouquet

twig decorations for home

Dear students of J1.7,
Twig Scrapbook

Get yourself a twig. Observe, feel and smell your own twig. Imagine that the twig is your new pet. Give it a name. 
Paste the twig  on the front cover of the scrapbook with its name on it.

Have a 'birth certificate' page.

Then, write a short description of the twig, followed by a short story of your new pet twig in the scrapbook.

Please post comments in this blog on how you feel having a twig as a pet.


Saturday, 13 August 2011


When my nephew suddenly said he wanted to write a book on his experiences meeting many taxi drivers, he thought it would be an endless story to tell. But when I told him that I should write on my students, we all had a good laugh when I said the story is not just endless but with many parts, chapters and volumes that it is going to beat even Harry Potter. Indeed how true that is.

My students have colourful characters and they have coloured my life throughout my teaching career which is almost coming to an end now. For 30 years in the profession, I have the privilege of meeting numerous students of whom some of them have already have their own grandchildren. From the first batch of students to the present one, they are just like holding the baton to stay on my path a litlle while before passing it to the next one in line.

I could still recall my first batch of students when I was posted to the SRJK(C) Rasa, Hulu Selangor, after completing my teacher training. In my attempt to teach my students English, I learned numerous words of Mandarin from them and could understand string of sentences in their mother tongue. Unfortunately, I was there only for a year and therefore I did not manage to grasp the language. What a loss on my part! But I carried with me some good memories of the batch I taught, especially the Standard 4 students who behaved very well and responded enthusiastically to my lesson when I was observed by a lecturer from the Sultan Idris Teacher Training College (now known as UPSI). And all that happened without me requesting them to do so, prior to the visit.

On the first day of Syawal that year, about 20 of my students came to my kampung house and at first I thought it would disastrous for me. However, they were well-behaved, enjoyed all the food and drinks I served and hung around for almost three hours in my house. I did not have to entertain them throughout their stay because after eating, they went down to the house compound and played among themselves. After having a second round of drinks, they finally excused themselves and as they shook my hand I offered each one of them a RM1 angpow. To my surprised, they unanimously refused to accept my angpow because I was not married. According to the Chinese, only married people can give angpows away. Even when I told them I am not Chinese and it's all right for me to give away angpows, they still would not accept my money. And they were all just between 10-12 years old. How different they were from the children today.

Another incident which I cannot forget till today is about a flasher who stalked and flashed at these young children during their Physical Education lesson. The school was located next to a road and anyone can come as close as possible to the school compound which was surrounded by a fence. After a few times witnessing the children screamed and scrambled towards the staff room because of the flasher, I decided to put a stop to the flasher's visit. I convinced the students to not run away the next time the flasher came. Instead, everyone should crowd together and stare at the flasher while chanting the word flasher. It worked and the flasher never did come again.

And these are just a few incidents with my students in my first year of teaching...