Friday, 30 March 2012

At the age of 13 - 16 years old: I am a champion too

After reviewing the previous many posts, I realized that I have missed out one important milestone of my life. The missing link was my "Sportsmanship".

In my primary school days, my teacher Mr Zhuang asked ask to try out one new sport during our PE lesson. We were asked to gather around a pit of sand where Mr Zhuang demonstrated the sport. It was called "Long-Jump"

As the school was having annual sport day soon, Mr Zhuang hope to select a few student to participate in this sport. Each of us was given a chance to try and jump. I did mine as well. Then, I was asked to jump again.... then again.... Finally Mr Zhuang told me that he was very impress with me. The exact (80% remembrance) words he used was "当你跳的时候,就好像一只小鸟在飞, 很轻松,很自在”. He said he will train me and also registered me for participation.

Photos from
I trained regularly with him. The effort was not wasted. I came in first for the sport during the annual sport meeting.  It did not stop there. When I got into Secondary school, I am still very involved in this sport amidst my "extra-curriculum" activities.

In Secondary one, I registered to participate in "Long-Jump" during the annual sports day. I came in first. Thereafter, I was selected to be part of the school athletic team to represent the school in this sport. Our coach was Ms Tan YL (the pretty teacher who taught me Chemist). I never missed any of her training (you know why?). Along the way, she realized that my stamina was very good and begin to train me also in long-distant running (aka cross-country, the 4.8km run in MacRitchie). My timing was 16-17mins back then.

Every year, I will always be participating in long-jump during the sports day. Every year, I am the champion. Although I am short, I can jump 6m. Finally, in secondary 4, only one (apart from me) in the school registered to take part in long jump. I heard from the teacher that no-one wanted to join because they know they can only vied for second place. No joy in that. I was really honored.  So I was the reigning champion for long jump throughout the 4 years in school.

Some of the other sports I played was basketball and table tennis. I have won a lot of trophies from these 2 sports as well.

My reflection: While at the peak, don't forget how you climb. Effort is a definite MUST in all that we do. There is no FREE success.

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Monday, 19 March 2012

At the age of 15-16: The end days

From my previous posts, I talked about the jobs I did, the way I behaved and the "extra-curriculum" activities I was engaged in. I may not be able to clearly account for all the events I went through. Some of the significant events may be skipped unintentionally. If you have known me since that time and I missed some that, please let me know.

Time flies really fast. At the blink of my eyelid, I was already into Secondary 4, which is also my "O-Level" examination year. My secondary school days were rather exciting for me but in the "wrong" ways. I am very different from my class and school mates. For example, they frequented to our school library while I frequented to Principal Office. They studied hard for exam while I played hard for my exams.

I still remember clearly during one of the prelim examination, My "friends" asked me out for an overnight Roller Blading. I agreed knowing that I still got an exam to take the next day. We met at Yishun and started rollerblading all the way to Sentosa. By the time we reached Sentosa, the gate to the bridge was closed. We decided to climbed over and "squad" bladed across the bridge to prevent detection from the security guards. All of us make it finally across the bridge and we bladed around the island of Sentosa. We were very mischievous. We actually bladed around the chalets and "peeked" into it. It was a very action-packed observation. We moved from chalets to chalets. It was really fun. At about 6am, we decided to call it a day and we took the first bust home "Bus service 855" from World Trade Centre interchange. My exam starts at 9am. I reached home at 8am, bath, change to school uniform and went for the exam (should be chemistry).

I took the exam on time and finished very very early. Haha, guess my result?

When the paper was returned to us a few weeks later, this would be the shock to many. I got an A1 for combined science. This angered a lot of people including my friends who went rollerblading with me. They said I am a liar, I lured them to play and forsake the studies and yet I studied. I need to emphasized that I was not the organizer of the blading session and throughout the night, did you see me study?

Now I am going to share with you my secret. When I was in Secondary two, there was a streaming exam which we can choose which stream we will go to depending on result. My result was not exactly bad but I chose a Art + Design & Technology class. This is one of the worst class as it will be comprises of students of "lower grade". Why would I choose this then? See the subjects I listed.....
  1. English
  2. Chinese
  3. E Math
  4. Combine Science (Phy/Chem)
  5. Geography
  6. Arts
  7. Design & Technology
Do you know the reason now? Let me show you why.......
  1. English -----> No choice, sure must take
  2. Chinese -----> No choice, sure must take
  3. E Math -----> No choice, that is one of the core subject
  4. Combine Science (Phy/Chem) -----> No choice, that is one of the core subject
  5. Geography -----> No choice, that is one of the core subject
  6. Arts -----> No need to study, "O" level was project based
  7. Design & Technology -----> Minimal study, "O" level was half project based 
Analyzing it,  noticed that I need to study only 3,4,5,7. Out of these, Math is formula and brain based.... minimal memorizing. Science and Geography got to study and learned. Design & Technology also minimal study as the test will be very tools-based and process based. This means that, the more I actively participate in the project, the more tools and process I will know. This will build up knowledge.  Now the secret to my A1 revealed. I was seated just in front of teacher's desk. Of course this got to do with the chemist teacher as well. She is beautiful and gorgeous (Ms Tan Y L). I paid 101% attention and actually able to remember the stuffs she taught. By paying full attention in class helped me. My style of learning is through logic and why based. I will try to understand the reason instead of knowing the answer.

In the end, I only need to study Geography and Physics. Wasn't is wonderful. Out of 7 subject, studied on 2. 

Although I was playful and mischievous and always on the wrong side of order, I consider myself sensible as I know that I know that I know to break free from poverty is through studies. Throughout the entire four years in Secondary School, my parent had been called in for my action and behavior. It saddens me a lot as they always as they always came to my school lifting their head "down". 

In 1995, I received a notification from school to receive an award. I topped the subject in Design & Technology. I was awarded the "Certificate of Merit". My parents were invited for the presentation ceremony. That day was the first glorious day that my parents can lift their head high coming to my school. I finally did my family proud.

Certificate of Merit awarded to me.
My reflection: While it is important to live a free & easy lifestyle, I must also consider the people around me. In this world, it is not just about me alone. The action I did may also affect another one, who may also me my dearest one.

Continue to follow my blog. More will be revealed as I progressed onto the journey.

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