1. To what extent do you agree with the issues that the student has raised here? Point out some issues of agreement and possible contention.
Yes I do agree with the issues the student has raised here. In our current education system, it is true that just memorizing facts can ensure an A1 grade for your exams. In a typical class, you can see many people taking out their textbooks and memorizing all text in the textbook, as well as notes and handouts given by the subject teachers. In a humanities essay, we just need to throw out all the points we have already memorized and we can happily get the A1 out of the paper. In a science exam, it is true that in chemistry, there would never be a question “why is carbon a non-metal?” The teachers will only teach us which ones are metals and which ones are not. Which one is more reactive than the other? Which one has a denser volume? Etc. Just memorizing all these facts would ensure as another A1 in the grade. I believe that is a reason why Oral Participation is a very important in the education system in Hwa Chong. It motivates students to ask more questions. Not just sit there and fumble with their textbooks and stuffs putting all the facts into their brain. In the letter, I agree with the point about the CME classes being replaced for subject lessons. In my P6 class, I remembered teachers cancelling Physical Education, Social Studies, Health Education and Civics and Moral Education and replace them with subject lessons to ensure they finish the syllables and ensure that we have memorise them well. They may have done this for the sake of us but what they had done was wrong. CME shapes the character of a person, teaching them self-discipline and stuff. I also feel that the CME teaches us that we should help people when they are in need. In the letter, a point was raised out that many people are too busy meddling with their smartphones updating their profiles and checking facebook instead of helping the old lady. In CME, the teachers tell us what to do is right and what to do is wrong. If we all do what is only right, then we would be a good person. It may somewhat sound true and wrong. The teachers cannot possibly make us do only what is right. We have inquisitive minds as what mentioned by the student. We have our own way of thinking. Lastly, I feel that memorizing facts will never work. As mentioned by the student, a real and good leader will never recite what he had learnt from political science. However, he applies them to solve problems, not just memorise for exams and “delete” them afterwards.
2. Examine her tone and attitude in this letter. Do you think it’s a well-crafted letter with the appropriate tone?
Most of her arguments are from her point of view, but are seemingly true as we can see. She can be biased but she does provide several counter arguments. She is moderately polite as she does not scold or push the wrong doings to the Minister of Education.
3. If you should write a letter to Minister of Education, what are some issues you would raise? Remember- your intention is to make the system better for society’s betterment via CONSTRUCTIVE ideas.
Firstly, I would address the “questioning” part. Our education system now is based on only memorizing facts. I feel that it’s time for us to change.
Second, I would address the importance of CME classes and explain why they should not be replaced although the exams are still important.