This is the second year I have been entrusted as the Story Telling coach. I wonder if this would be my last assignment as a primary school teacher; or will I still be doing this same thing and be writing the same event (again) in my blog next year? Hahaha! You never know. I will never know. That’s the beauty of future and I pray hard to change the course of my career – I will do what it takes to make it works, Insya ALLAH.
Great effort from Thivya and her team to don this Mother Nature @ Gaia’s persona.
Anyway since 2011 until 2014, I was assigned on Choral Speaking (with quite fracas in 2011; of course when I commented something in my blog and the management wasn’t keen and started to reprimand my side; headmistress to my headmaster and the teachers to my Head of English Panel – REFER to https://undomiel84.wordpress.com/2011/03/31/choral-speaking-hulu-selangor-district-level-competition-2011-running-snow-white-to-2nd-placing/). And then last year for the first time, I was asked to coach the Story-Telling contestant (apart from coaching Choral Speaking and preparing the script) and without much hope, we cemented the third place (REFER to https://undomiel84.wordpress.com/2015/04/20/a-dejavu-reliving-the-childhood-fable-embroideries-story-telling-hulu-selangor-district-level-2015-sk-lembah-beringin-the-return-of-cinderella/). It was unexpected but that was nice feeling.
Not too exaggerating, not too dramatic. Just cool and poise. And that complements with the Rules & Regulation. And yet, those who exaggerate and dramatic dominate the top spots. Aren’t we all being left to wonder? Should we suppress the feeling to “not jeopardize the sensitivity harmony”??
Initially for this year, our contestant Thivya did not want to participate as she wanted to focus on her UPSR but after much persuasion, she finally succumbed amidst the hectic schedule as a Year 6 Pupil. As she already have the experience, I didn’t really push her as much as when she was in Year 5 – furthermore now she is in Year 6 and seemed that most teachers are reluctant to let her go even to practice with me as “everyone feels his or her subject is the most important of all”! Yeah sure she is in the first class but sometimes, it is frustrating when your own colleagues did not cooperate with you. But then again, we have to do what we have to do. Malaysian teachers are expected to deliver the tasks given irregardless how you do it or handle it. So, the words speak for the action itself, no?
All together, I only have 3 days of context hours with Thivya and each session only for 15 minutes++. Good that she has the ability to work the script on her own as well as the direction of the story and the props (she bought a dress for the sake of this!). Thivya is lucky to have a great supporting system from her parents who are sort of like her entourage whenever she joins this. The story chosen was “The Boy Who Becomes A Frog” – a loose adaptation of Princess & The Frog fable. Thivya chronicles the story from the point of view of Mother Nature.
It is always interesting to see the Malaysian greenhorns’ talents. But I can’t help to wonder, who makes all the rules and regulations / rubrics for all these competitions? I have more to write but then I don’t wanna cause any fracas – you know how Malaysian civilian hierarchy operates – the higher strata will survey the lower strata; scouting and pinpointing – when they feel their ‘images are tainted’. Even if that was a harmless or intellectual-generative opinions.
Anyway, prior to this competition, 2 weeks ago; all teachers were summoned for a district briefing and we were told that for story-telling competitions :-
- No exaggerations or over-dramatizing;
- Cannot have too many dialogues – confusion of identities (limit that to one or two roles ONLY);
- Do not move dramatically. Stand still with limited movement – and only torso is allowed for active movement.
So with all these rules and regulations, I shared with Thivya. And today, I saw most of the contestants and the winners were very dramatic and exaggerating in their storytelling whereas Thivya simply played it safe. The minus point for Thivya was probably due to her voice projection but we were in a small room and I guess that was a bit lame to be enlisted as the degrading factor.
And of course, Thivya cried when she wasn’t announced as the winner. I was not really banking on her when she didn’t get the 3rd spot but was shocked to find that most of the winners were the ones with over dramatization and exaggerations (but their voices were clear). As much I didn’t want to write this as it could probably invite another fracas from the ‘virtual spies’, I am left to wonder – the winners selected contradicted to the “no exaggerations or over-dramatizing” rules highlighted prior to the competition. Hmmm… where’s the sense in that?
Opps…now she is almost as tall as I am!
On top of that, teachers are also not allowed to see the impromptu part (since last year). Basically, I don’t even know how the part was organized and I am expected to coach the other kids for the next years? We coach and we train pupils every year but with the ever-changing rules, teachers also did not know which rules to be trusted and blindly coach students. In the end, the announced victories are those who seemingly contradicting the rules. That’s why I began to understand what Kak Wahidah, my Head of English Panel’s meant on the sentiment on these competitions – “no point sending when we know the verdicts”.
The effort of Thivya and her family was amazing. This reminds of me of the character Gaia, The Mother Nature from 90s cartoon click, “Captain Planet”! Do you guys remember, 90s babies? Haha!
Is it wrong for me to write what I feel inside about my own thought? Anyway if any spies are reading this, don’t worry. Nobody bothers to read lengthy English pieces so your names won’t be smeared. I just write the conflicting thoughts in my mind, that’s all. After all, this is the solace of “what’s in my mind”, right? Don’t worry, I have learned my lesson not to reveal the names. Everything will go incognitos. LMAO! On whole, well done to Thivya and Kirana and teacher Azlin (Public Speaking). You know what we did; we chatted and laughed for 2 hours, and already predict the execution of the sharp guillotines, this year. Haha……