blogging gobbledygook and such

My Form Six Days

My Form Six days, which was about 3 years ago (goodness, I can’t believe I’m so old… I left secondary school six years ago!!), sparked the curiosity of Magik Quilter and KStafford because I had some of what you could call interesting experiences. These are random memories and not according to chronological order.

1. I went shopping with a friend and a teacher, Ms Nut. She bought a skirt and treated us to dinner. It was weird but fun.

2. I got a zero in a monthly exam for leaving school early. I left the class because there was nothing to do and I wanted to get a head start walking home. I usually do this but I got caught on that day. It was my first zero. Not that it mattered much because my parents don’t really bother about my report card and ultimately the only results that mattered were what I scored in the pre-u exam itself.

3. I took an English placement test (MUET – Malaysian University English Test, required if you want a place in a local public university) and I was 1 mark away from Band 6, which was the highest band – kinda like A or A+ grade. I cried when I got the result; so near yet so far! I sat for the test again upon the advice of Ms Nut, but I scored even worse, haha!

4. I visited a newspaper-printing factory of a local daily. It was an interesting trip, but sadly I hardly remember any of it now.

5. During one of the monthly exams, I slept after completing my English paper. In a 2-hour English paper I’m usually done by half an hour to 45 minutes. The invigilating teacher, who was a man I never respected but tolerated, woke me up, flicked his finger on my cheek (using his middle finger and thumb) and snarled at me for sleeping during an exam. I told him that I was finished, what else was I to do? (We can’t leave the room after we’re done.) He didn’t believe me and checked my paper. When he saw I was indeed telling the truth, he muttered that it was wrong to sleep during an exam and walked away. I felt like my space was invaded; even though what he did wasn’t sexually intended, I felt molested all the same. I told Ms Nut about it, who then told a higher-ranking teacher about it, but I guess flicking your finger on a girl’s cheek is not enough to warrant sexual harassment.

6. I entered a newspaper-making competition with a group of friends, representing the school. I was the co-editor, planning the articles and concept of our newspaper. The first year we entered it, we won fifth place. The next year, we entered it again, and won first prize. It was a national competition organised by a local daily, and they reprinted our 4-page school newspaper in the Sunday pullout. Our prize? A trophyΒ  and RM1000 for the school, certificates, and a whole lot of pizza (since it was the main sponsor). We ate pizza till we were sick of it! I’d show you the newspaper, but I kept it in a CD somewhere and I can’t find it. If I do, I’ll put it up in the protected post. πŸ™‚

So, some memories of two years in Form Six. It wasn’t very memorable, but it was a very laidback time to me. I played cards in the class (I love playing this game called tai ti or loosely translated as big two), ate in the class during break time, read tons of Agatha Christie mysteries (the school library has almost all her books), went in and out of class as I pleased (if I was questioned by a teacher, I said I was in the editorial board room doing work for the newspaper competition, and I was also in the editorial board) and I even came to school every single school day so that I could get the perfect attendance certificate. It wasn’t boring to come to school every day, even when it was revision period and everybody skipped class except me (I was the only one who came to class for several of those days, haha) because I basically went where and did what I pleased, and if I was ever lonely, I’d look for Ms Nut or do some work for my favourite teachers or read a book.

Hmm, thinking back, those were some really nice days!

Comments on: "My Form Six Days" (13)

  1. which school were you in? don’t tell me victoria institution?

    sulz: secret! πŸ˜‰

  2. Wow, I can’t even imagine going out shopping and on a dinner with a teacher πŸ˜›

    sulz: yeah, i know. luckily i managed to coax the other friend to come with me. but it was an experience. πŸ™‚

  3. lovelyloey said:

    Yew, that invigilator. Would he have done the same to a Muslim girl then?! Seriously. If that happened in Singapore, he’d be such great trouble. If I were the counsel to a girl in that situation, I’d claim it’s a loss of dignity on my client’s part (since flicking the face synonymous to a slap) and that I was publicly embarassed, and my client felt harassed and emotionally disturbed. Hurh. (Sorry la, in a fiery mood :p)

    sulz: i would be too if my friend told me some arsehole did that to her. the problem was i knew it was wrong, and yet people seem to make it look like it’s not that wrong, and then i wondered if i was overreacting to it. and i didn’t even provoke him in any way. i mean, if you can’t leave after finishing an exam until the time is up, what else is there to do but sleep?! it beats disturbing others by trying to whisper to the friend sitting in the next row, right?? but after that incident, he avoided me, as i him.

  4. lovelyloey said:

    Oh yes, From 6 = 15 years old? Over here that’s considered a legal Minor. Which really can equate to being very protected by the law which means that guy is going down for you. Hurh. (heh)

    sulz: haha, when i was 15 i was form 3. here, form 6 is the malaysian equivalent to a-levels, it’s the pre-u course you take to qualify for local public universities. i was 18 and 19 years old then; i only started college when i was 20, which is really late by normal standards (we have 4-year degree courses we can go to after secondary school, which is 17 or 18 years old).

  5. Re: No. 5: effin’ bastard!. I believe it wasn’t sexual harassment, BUT he was disrespectful to you. It was effin’ rude of him to do such a thing… and definitely invaded your personal space.

    puto cabrΓ³n!

    sulz: he was, no question, but i guess he wasn’t disrespectful enough, since the discipline teacher refused to take action after hearing of it, and i never got an apology from him. and i was kinda freaked out after the incident to approach him, since nobody felt that it was serious enough and i didn’t want to look like i want to cause drama.

    i don’t know what that means, but i’m sure it’s colourful! πŸ˜‰

  6. I know what Juan said, and it is. πŸ˜‰ It may not have been sexual harassment, but it was still assault! If you’re not allowed to sleep, he could have just called your name, like “Samantha Ursula Lucinda Zelda (I have a notion that “sulz” is an acronym), wake up!”
    Anyway, it sounds like Ms. Nut has been a good mentor to you. It is fortunate to have people like that. I would love to see the newspaper. Find it, find it!!! πŸ™‚

    sulz: haha, i figured since he was colourful enough already in english. πŸ˜› in malaysia, things like that are not really recognised. women are still getting lewd stares and catcalls walking down the road in a nice outfit. i ignore it because i don’t want to give them the satisfaction of getting a reaction from me, but at the same time by ignoring it i’m not doing anything about it. but if i react they’ll just get what they were looking for… catch-22!

    yes, she was. i still keep in touch with her till today, though we aren’t as close anymore. 😦 life goes on, i guess. and yes, i will find the newspaper i promise, just that it may take a little while!

  7. yeah sulz, find the newspaper, I want to see it too! I had a similar experience regarding No. 5 in middle school. I had finished the English comprehension section of the state testing and lied my head down on my desk. I wasn’t even sleeping, and the teacher wanted to give me detention. how ludicrous!

    sulz: at any rate, what i did was something very common in malaysian schools, and some teachers even encouraged it because at least we’re not busy trying to whisper to other friends and making a nuisance of ourselves. sometimes teachers are way too anal!!

    yes, i will, don’t worry. πŸ™‚

  8. lovelyloey said:

    Oh. I was having a temporary brain malfunction. Haha. I actually counted wrong. Hoho.
    Over here, we’re encouraged (when we were in primary school all the way to pre-u) to check and recheck our answers. And it’s not like they make exams so easy that anyone gets to finish it early. Sometimes it’s good enough if we even get to finish it. Haha.

    sulz: here too, but i’m the sort who can’t check my answers again, i just don’t see the mistakes until after they’re marked! well, i mostly only have plenty of time left after the english paper. not the case anymore in college though. πŸ™‚

  9. sometimes teachers are way too anal!!

    so true.

  10. Thanks Muse, it certainly was assault and here we go again with what is acceptable in treatment of children or minors….read powerless in society…and what would have happened if some child had done that in the classroom or elsewhere to a teacher or authority figure. My blood is boiling. Then we factor in the cultural aspects of this as well and it is surely even more disgusting.

    I agree that students are encouraged to put their heads down when finished their work….what if you had been ill and were resting ..then get flicked in the face.
    My son’s friends have recently invigilated and they have no teaching experience or anything so I guess it is not surprising that things like this happen.

    sulz: well, teachers are always made invigilators for all school exams, so he would’ve been aware of the sleeping-after-finishing habit since he’s a pretty old man. and some old people, especially asian old people, in my experience, are more prone to think their views are the only right ones to have. like not sleeping after you finish your paper. πŸ™„

    never thought of this when i rea cj’s encounter with the old man, and certainly didn’t think to think if it were the other way around, if a student did this to the teacher… hmm, something i’m aware of now.

  11. Glad to hear you have such fond memories of Sixth Form. I wish I could say my Sixth Form was so laidback! I wonder if when I’m done I’ll look back on it fondly too.

    I really can’t imagine going out to dinner with a teacher. I’ll bet that was a really strange experience.

    It must be really irritating to just miss top grade in your MUET! Still, at least you got a good grade.

    That invigilating teacher sounds horrible. Again, I can’t imagine that happening around here – he’d be the one in trouble for disrupting people’s exam, and serve him right! It doesn’t sound like it was remotely sexual, but he still should have been in trouble for behaving like that. What a jerk. And a busybody too; what was it to him whether you slept or not?

    That newspaper competition sounds really cool! You must be so talented. I wish my friends would do cool stuff like that, but we’re all so lazy!

    sulz: if your sixth form isn’t so memorable, all the better because your uni days will be very memorable then in comparison. πŸ˜›

    it was a big strange, but i’m really close to ms nut so it was like having dinner with an adult friend. we really are like friends; i tease her the way i would with a friend my age and she teases me back, so much so that sometimes it stung! haha.

    yeah, band 5 ain’t too bad. less expectations! haha… hahaha, busybody, yeah he was. :mrgreen:

    nah, i’m not. i was fortunate to have some really good friends on the team who were dedicated and creative. hey, we were lazy too; we only did it for the pizza!

  12. Pizza makes any amount of effort worthwhile. πŸ™‚

    sulz: i’ll agree with you there, since i did all that for pizza myself! πŸ˜›

  13. You could probably get a teacher fired for flicking a student in some places in the U.S. – depending on their tenure.
    That’s horrible. Who doesn’t sleep in school? I’d like to flick that bastard.

    The paper story was awesome. Things like that will come in handy later in life when you need to recall the experiences.

    May I ask what “Form 6” is? I’m not familiar with the term. Sounds kind of like middle school/junior high here in the U.S.

    If so, can I ask if you are taking specialized classes or what we might refer to as “gen-ed” (general education) type classes?

    I ask because one of my main gripes with the way we educate our workforce is that we spend their entire lives generalizing them when we should be specializing them based on strengths. I always joke that we know a little bit about a lot of things, but we don’t know a lot about anything. I think it’s worth debating openly which is better. I”m not convinced we’re approaching this correctly and think it’s one of the reasons we’ve lost our techinical and engineering edges.

    I’m the king of long replies. : )

    sulz: only because you choose to be so generous as to give pure blog fodder by commenting instead of having a personal blog with all the hits! πŸ˜›

    ironically, he had a school-going daughter at that time; she was my junior a few years. i wonder how he’d feel if some male teacher flicked his fingers at his pretty little girl? πŸ™„

    i’d love to work in the journalism industry, but only as those with a 9 to 5 job. πŸ˜› i like routine, i’m afraid.

    form 6 is a pre-u option like a-levels in the uk. to my knowledge, kids in the us take the sats then apply for colleges. in uk and malaysia, we sit for a pre-u course before entering colleges or universities. (there is also the option to study for a degree in certain colleges here straight after graduating from secondary school, the equivalent to us high school, but an introductory course will be incorporated into the degree which you otherwise wouldn’t take if you started college after pre-u.) i chose form 6 because it’s the cheapest pre-u course that enabled me to qualify to apply for local public universities. any other pre-u course would not allow me to apply for a local public uni after i’m done.

    generally, the course has general courses like you suspected, though there is an option to take exams of subjects not offered in school (you’d have to learn it on your own, in that case). if you know how the malaysian education system works, you would be appalled. hmm, another blog post idea! thanks, my equine lover friend! :mrgreen:

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