Teaching, and all greared up for learning!

So this 9-year-old came up to me and asked me this: If I saw a RM5 note and a RM10 note on the floor, which would I pick up?

“I dunno,” I replied. “Which do you think I should pick up?”


And then all the other 9-year-olds around us laughed like it was the funniest joke evaaarrrr.

So odd right, these kids?

Then there’s this other time when I was explaining 3-digit-number division, and this boy suddenly came out to me, pulled me close and whispered, “I need to tell you a joke.”

Notice he said “need“.

I told him to wait until I’m done with my explanation, but he shook his head and went, “No, I have to tell you now!”

So fine lor, I asked him what it was.

“Oh you know just now, I was taking the newspapers to the recycling corner, then it started raining, and I had to put the newspaper on my head and RUUUUNNN!!!!”

And then he started laughing his head off.

I was like, WTF?

These kids seem to really love jokes, judging by the times they went, “lao shi wo you xiao hua gen ni jiang!”

But not a single one of their jokes were actually funny.

Sigh, generation gap, generation gap. Ten years older, too old to understand the humour.

Okay you could’ve guessed by now I’ve gotten myself involved with a little too much than I can handle.

Yup, I’m a class teacher for a Standard 3 class.

You know every time there’s a riot going on somewhere, they’d show up on the newspapers, and in the picture there’d be these protesters/riot-instigators who seem to be screaming their heads off? Then there’d be the police trying to restrain these screaming people?

In a typical schooling day, these kids are the screaming, havoc-creating people. And I’m the exasperated police.

I’ve always thought being a teacher would be fun, my sister and I used to play “Teacher-Teacher” all the time, and I’d ALWAYS be the teacher. So I figured it’d be cool to work as a temporary teacher while I wait till I go off to the States.

It’s pretty cool la actually, even though sometimes they annoy you greatly because they can never sit still. It’s like they’re sitting on hot woks – the minute they sit down, they just have to stand up again.

But it’s cool ’cause sometimes they are so adorable!

Like when they tell those un-funny jokes, I laugh with them not because I understand their weird humour, but ’cause I find them so cute! There’s this little girl who sits right in front of the teacher’s desk, and every time I catch her eye she’d smile at me so sweetly, I completely melt.

Still, I wouldn’t want to do something like this long-term. When they say teachers are the most stressed, they sho’ ain’t kiddin’! And my time here is only a tiny fraction of the time the permanent teachers have been here.

But like I said, I think teaching is fun, and I’m only doing it for a few months.

* * * * *

Okay so. I haven’t been updating because… well because I haven’t the mood for it. I was in the middle of the most agonizing, horrendous waiting game.

College admission decisions were coming in!

They trickled in so slowly, every day felt like a century. The whole waiting period spanned something like, 3 weeks? I dunno.

I’ve been emailing a couple of people (who were also waiting) back and forth, basically just updating each other, complaining / freaking out together.

Anyway. I remember talking to ZiHui (and one time it was in the middle of the night) and freaking out because I was worried I wouldn’t be accepted anywhere.

So I’m happy to say — I’m accepted somewhere!

LOL okay, a few somewheres.

It’s been a pretty headache-inducing process which I never want to go through again (but I’d probably have to go to graduate school). The months before my SAM finals going through college websites, requesting view books, doing research research research, and eventually finalizing my list of Schools To Apply To.

Then it was the standardized testing. Pretty shitty.

Then the shittiest part – the actual applying. The loooong list of essays (nightmare x 1000), the chasing after lecturers who keep forgetting about my recommendations.

Then there was the waiting stage. My first decision was a rejection, by the way. Way to start this stage, huh.

And now that I’ve heard back from almost all my schools, it’s the final (and frankly the most enjoyable) stage – the deciding of which school I’d attend.

My parents, who have resigned to the fact that they have never heard of a single liberal arts college that I applied to, haven’t done a whole lot of research on LACs. Which is why the US News rankings have been their yardstick for measuring how “good” a school is. It’s a tad annoying when I tell them I’m accepted somewhere, and the first thing my dad asks is, “What is it ranked?”

So anyway.

I’ve a decision to make – school that I reeeeaaaally love, that is a perfect fit for me (and basically I cannot imagine being anywhere other than here), or school that is lower-ranked, but has offered me a $60,000 merit award? $60,000 is a lot. Like, a lot.

My dad is implying that I should go to the cheapest school. Well of course, he’s the one paying.

I actually thought colleges would be more generous (the most expensive school was too stingy to give me proper aid. Cheh, not on the top of my list anyway).

Oh well.

Sucks being so dependant on financial aid.

But really, all I wanna say is this – at least I’m going somewhere!

I don’t have anything against Malaysian education, it’s just that nothing that is offered here tickles my interest. When I say nothing, I mean nothing. Like, if you pressure me into choosing a course, I’d probably choose something like Mass Communications, but I’m only choosing it because it seems the least boring of all the other courses offered, not that I find it particularly interesting.

But when I look at the websites/viewbooks of liberal arts colleges, I get so excited. I mean, the possibilities are endless! I was looking at the list of First-Year Seminar classes for 2007 on the website of one of the colleges that accepted me, and I feel a bit like when I’m at a favourite restaurant and I’m looking at the menu – every thing looks so exciting I cannot pick a favourite!

It feels like you’re attending classes because you’re there to learn. This is where learning for learning’s sake comes to mind. It’s completely different from diving into any course in Malaysia, where you’re basically being job-trained.

I’m really excited, can you tell?

LOL okay err bye-bye!

(I have a bad throat now from all the shouting over the heavy rain to make myself heard during class.)

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