Last night was my first French class!! Omigod it was fun!! I never thought that the class would be in so much fun!! Seriously I really enjoyed the class!! Best class ever in my entire life!! Hahahah sorrylah ter’excited’ sikit..but I am not exaggerating..mmg best..seumur hidop aku, aku tak penah masuk class yg best mcm ni..2 jam tak rasa apa..tau2 lagi 5 minit class dah nak habes..kalau kat m’sia 2 jam aku dah terngantuk2 dlm class..hahah! yg ni aku balik umah tersenyum riang, gumbira, happy, rasa nak melompat2, sume ada! =D
I gain new experience through this class. Now only I know what it feels like to study abroad. I may not know entirely and technically, but at least I get the picture. I have seen in movies/television/documentaries/conferences on how the system works, but when I experience it myself, I know the real feeling.
Let me tell you my theory. People in general normally learn various languages, including their mother tongue. People in Malaysia in particular customarily learn three languages; Bahasa, English and Arabic. I have been to classes of those three languages before myself, be it formally at school, or leisurely at a language centre, or even privately at home. We used to learn a theory first, then only the practice/application/implementation/training, whatever you like call it, comes (if and only if it does come! Sometimes it does not come at all!).
If we look into Arabic for instance, we keep learning muannath, muzakkar from kindergarden until we finished high school. We keep memorising fi’il mudhori’, fi’il madhi, fi’il ammar until we graduated. Same thing as in English, we keep being taught with past tense, present tense, future past tense, which one is singular, which one is plural. Lots and lots of theories along the way, leaving practical things behind. Last night, I learned the opposite way. Exercise comes first, then only the theory. You learn how to talk first, just talk as much as you like, any way you like, tunggang terbalik pun tak apa, then only you learn where were you wrong. For example, when you say a sentence, say “I am a Chinese”, if the teacher spots the grammatical error, then only will the teacher say okay, there is a mistake, and he corrects it; how to say the same sentence if you are a Chinese girl, or if you are a Chinese boy. That way I learn faster, because I practice. What I learned back in Malaysia, we have to make sure the grammatical sentence is correct, then only we have the guts to say it out loud. That way we never learn from our mistake and we do not remember things. Get me?
When I say we practice, I really do mean practice. Whatever form of practical things you may like; conversations, dialogue, games etc. In 2 hours I could sit at three different places in that small class. At first I was sitting at one corner of the classroom, and then I moved to the other side, next thing I know I was in front of the class playing games tulis kat papan kapur! Memang tak duduk diam, that is why 2 jam tak rasa apa. The class was very active and fast, which means I have to catch things up real quick! nak menulis pun tak sempat. But that way I learn fast. I won the competition in the games, twice! haha Malaysian beat up Thailandese..hahah!
Cikgu aku sgt best. He has characters; funny, jovial, relax, not to mention young and handsome! Lagi handsome dari Brad Pitt! Hahah. But seriously, I think a teacher plays very crucial role in delivering something. In this class, the teacher will never speak in English, apatah lagi Bahasa Melayu, hahah! When he teaches, he will try to explain it in French as much as he could. If we come across a word that none of us know, he will never give the word in English, he will try to explain it in French instead, paling-paling tidak dia akan bagi signal..rupa-rupanya yg dia dok cakap tu ialah nurse!!hahah..Bahasa Inggeris diharamkan di dalam kelas. Sape2 dia dengar cakap English memang kena..hahaha..To me it is the exact method because I understand and remember quickly. They do not need to use high tech equipment to teach, enough with the precise methodology. Just imagine I can remember all my classmates, their names, nationalities, professions, etc..memanglah tak ramai, 9 orang je..but in two hours I can explain their brief biography in French! Siap boleh suruh eja nama kalau tak paham..hahah..by the way I am the only Malaysian, others are from the United States, Thailand, China, Mexico, Oman, Saudi Arabia etc. In two hours I learned a lot, does not feel like a burden, like I said, it is not like what I expected. I wish these kind of methods can be applied in Malaysia. I am thinking of doing the same thing in my tutorial class. So my future students beware! You may experience new things with me!hahah!
Something else to share - I have few little nephews and niece who went to international schools. If you look at them you can see how different they are. I am not saying that those who went to ordinary school tak baik, I went there myself. All I am saying is that you can see the difference in their personalities, the way they communicate with people, their confidence and friendliness. At international school, they really enjoy going to school..yg tadika pun tak takot gi sekolah. They really love their teachers. Wherever they see their teachers they run and hug them! Every morning they go to school, the headmaster/mistress will wait at the doorstep to greet them! And like I said before, more exercises and presentations; bring your most favourite thing, bring your pet, and talk about it, anything that you like. If the child macam terdiam, yelah budak2 tadika, the teacher will assist them, asking why is this thing is your most favourite thing, who bought it for you, do you like the colour, so on and so forth. Ask questions so that they respond and talk..kalau budak2 yg dah besar sikit, tell the class your hobbies, if you collect football player cards, baseball cards, bring them to class and show your friends, and once in a while the teachers will bring them out, go to the post office for instance, teach them how to write a letter, send a letter to your parents, how to glue stamps, how to put it in the post-box..tak ke seronok budak2. They really enjoy going to school..aku yg dah tua bangka masuk class ni pun seronok..hehehe..balik mesia my niece terkejot, culture shock..masuk class sekolah biasa darjah 2 cikgu garang nak mampus..”sape tak bawak homework datang sekolah esok cikgu rotan!!”..tak ke tekejot berok budak tuh..haihhh..
Can’t wait to go to my second class! =)
Disclaimer: All statements and opinion given are in writer’s personal capacity and without prejudice. They have no relation with any individual or organisation. Those who study abroad feel free to share with me your experience. I love to learn new things!!