Blog Prompt 4

31 Jul

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.


Posted by on July 31, 2011 in Uncategorized


5 responses to “Blog Prompt 4

  1. Tan Wei Jin

    July 31, 2011 at 6:39 am

    For the first question, why don’t you look at factual memorisation from a different point of view. Being able to memorise everything completely and scoring an A1 or even first in class is something that not everyone is capable of. Instead of saying that factual memorisation is something that we will just do and forget, why don’t you say that it is a test of the person’s character? If you are able to get first in class, it goes to show that you have extremely good time management, it can also show that you work smart instead of working hard. Hope you put my input into consideration.

    Please visit and comment on my blog too!
    Wei Jin

  2. Tseng Chun Yi

    August 5, 2011 at 1:43 pm

    I do agree with your point how Singapore’s education system focused too much on memorizing. I would like to seek clarifications on the implications. What do you think if the education system remains unchanged? How would you be a student feel if you were given tests with no border and topics given? I feel that we will feel that is rather unfair and this always restricts us to study just the textbooks. Perhaps, as Singapore’s economy and life standards start to improve, the government should cater the education system so that the students have more chances to ask. However, we must recognize that we are living in the Asian society and that what matters to us is the “marks” and “eduction level attained”. We are not as open and our acceptability are low compared as those in the Western countries so we tend to just stick with the memorizing method as the only way to do well in assessments. In contrary, I do not agree that CME can help much to shape the characters of a student, what matters is the environment around them, their parents, their peers and many factors. Having a CME class does not change a notorious boy into a quiet and punctual boy! It takes time and most probably as the environment around them start to change, more people will follow and students would start following the trend. I feel that what is needed is this trigger.

  3. chuabingrui

    August 6, 2011 at 4:08 am

    Hi, I would like to clarify something that it is not just memorising that can ensure you an A1 in all subjects. For example, questions for science can come in many formats and may not be as straightforward as you have put it in your post. Also, especially for IH, it is definitely not just the memorising of facts which ensures you an A1 as firstly, we have the SBQ which needs you to have inference skills. This carries 50% of the marks for a history test in our school, also, for the essay part, you have to know how to construct the linkage before you are able to score and you must be able to weigh their importance, therefore, I feel that the education system is not like mathematics where memorising=A1; there is a need to be able to apply what you have memorised in order to score. Good post anyway!

  4. Goh Arnold

    August 9, 2011 at 8:20 am

    Hi Wen Feng. I do agree with you that CME lesson are very important. However, I feel that these lesson are useless if they are not put into action in our daily lives. Thus under your point of CME lessons not being replaced. I feel that you can add in a point on making CME an examinable subject and the way this should be a practical test. Students should make it a point to uphold their moral values and do the correct things even when the teachers are not looking. You can also suggest that moral values be considered into promoting a student or letting him retain. On the whole, I feel that this is a good post. Thank you.

  5. limfuman

    August 20, 2011 at 7:06 pm

    Firstly, I strongly oppose to your point that a humanities essay can be constructed by simply regurgitating facts. Are you telling me that you can throw out your facts in its raw form onto your answer? What is the point of an essay? It is to express your views to your readers explicitly and convince them of your point, in a coherent and logical structure and flow. Your elaboration and linkages serve this purpose, and the facts that you memorise should only be used to support your viewpoints. You said that memorization does not work. Are you telling me that you don’t memorise? You should address this more clearly. However, I appreciate the fact that you the failures of our education with sufficient evidence.


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