Sunday, May 24, 2009

"My tree bag is too heavy!"

Andre's SA1 results have been a hodge podge mixed bag. First, the good parts - he did well for his maths and English papers. In fact, he actually nearly gave me a heart attack for maths, coming home after his exam and wailing "so hard! I'm going to fail!" I was so concerned as maths is his best subject. False alarm, he scored 92/100, second highest in class. Woohoo! He did quite well for his English as well, except for composition. For doing well in these two subjects, he earned a McDonalds Happy Meal from his very generous form teacher.

Then the not so good parts. He missed his target of 80/100 for science. We were quite forgiving since this was the first time he'd sat for a science exam, but when I saw his paper, I was just baffled by some of the mistakes he made. Like this 3-mark giveaway question where he just had to look at the picture and fill in the labels:

When I asked Andre incredulously, "how is it you couldn't see that Plant A was IN the water, not floating on the water?", he replied, "I thought it was floating under water." Like huh?

But the subject that he scored lowest in was Chinese. I'm not sure if he even managed a Band 2. I guess I shouldn't have been too surprised, even though he came home and told me the paper was "a little bit easy" (he's completely off in his approximation!) He speaks Mandarin like an ang moh, the intonation seemingly random even for the simplest of words and phrases. For instance, instead of "吃鱼" (eat fish), he'll say "吃雨" (eat rain). My kids watch the Channel 8 Chinese drama 书包太重 but Andre will habitually say "树包", prompting me to ask, "what? you carry a tree bag?"

I was quite hopeful when he told me he got third for Chinese listening comprehension. He had scored 8/10.

"You mean no one scored 10/10?" I asked
"Have, some got 10."
"Huh? Then how did you get third?"
"Some got 10, some got 9. I'm the only one who got 8. One other boy got 7."
(Sound of me slapping forehead) "Alamak, so you didn't get third lah! You got second last!!"

During Chinese tuition, I've seen Andre place his head on the table like he's totally weary or stare gloomily at his book. His Chinese tutor is one of the nicest and most patient human beings I've ever met but lately, I've noticed that an edge sometimes creeps into her voice, possibly when she's explaining something to Andre for the thousandth time.

I don't envy her job. She's currently in China for a holiday, I think I'll spare her the bad news of Andre's results until she returns.


Anonymous said...

Mon, I know not getting the desired results is really something not funny anymore where parents are concerned. However, I want to share that my child has this same kind of optimistic way of looking at her own results. No results is bad results to her because she has many ways of looking at it. So I hear this ringing in my head as if she is telling me.."It's all about perspectives, mum." *faint*

Not that I am trying to destroy her confidence or optimism, but if you find an effective way to send the message across that some perspectives are not as acceptable as others, please let me know. LOL...

Btw, after saying all these, I am trying to see things from Andre's angle, the pictures are really not clear leh... Actually every plant also has some parts in water..Plant A is whole part, plant B is a fraction, and Plant C the lower half. Then fully grown underwater, they should put plant A growing at the bottom of the diagram, on the side, looks like floating. You can read his mind that plant C looks fully grown underwater because it starts from the bottom. I don't quite understand what it is testing. Maybe better to give a name to each of the plant then the properties can be recalled instead of relying on diagram alone?

Oh! How come I keep thinking Andre is P2, now then I realise he is in P3.


monlim said...

QX: I love your daughter's way of thinking! Her optimism will be an asset in life, even though you may not feel that way now.

I also don't know what they're trying to test with that question. Maybe it's not a test, it's a give-chance-for-first-time-science-exam question, they didn't figure that anyone could get it wrong :P

You keep thinking Andre is in p2 cos he's so childish!! Don't worry, I keep wondering myself how he could possibly be in p3...

Anonymous said...

Mon, your Andre really made me laugh until I tear up. Hey, he is exactly like both of my gals, speak chinese with a funny accent. "加油" became '炸油", "飞机" became "肥鸡". My P4 gal can not even speak mandarin in a full sentence. I really do not understand why....I'm so much better in my chinese but both my kids jiat-kang-tan. *sigh*


monlim said...

Chris: Actually, that makes me feel slightly better. If you kids have a speak-Mandarin mum and still struggle with Chinese, I don't feel so bad about mine!! :D

Lilian said...

I LOVE LOVE LOVE, Andre's idea of what 3rd is LOLOLOL!!! Talk about looking a cup half-full. Best lah your little fella.

Tell him if the test is for Cutest Kid in the World, he'll come in 1st!! Every day with this cutie must be like living in a sitcom :)

monlim said...

Lilian, you said it! I often feel like I'm one of those harrassed mums in a sitcom. But it's definitely funnier watching it than living it! LOL

Veronica_L said...

Wah, his form teacher is so nice...I am so jealous. Never got such a nice form teacher before when I was in school.

He seems to be getting lower marks for the papers he thinks that are easy and scoring well for the papers that he thinks are very difficult.

That boy is so funny. You must be laughing all day long, living with someone like that!

Lilian said...

Ahhhh, I had a closer look at the picture and I now see the genius of Andre.

Not very good questioning, the way it's worded.

You see, Fully grown under water is Plant C, cos the plant grew fully from under the water.

Some part in water. Plant B is correct what, cos part of it is in water and part of it isn't.

And Floating on water is Plant B, you've seen Finding Nemo right? You saw how the jelly fishes float on water?

Should march up to teacher and demand marks hahaha....Andre's English is too good lah, I'm totally on his side on this!

monlim said...

Veronica: Yes, lots of laughing in this household but lots of yelling too!

Lilian: I'm soooo tempted to accept your reasoning as a justification for Andre being a genius! Somehow I don't think so lah but thanks for that wonderful glimmer of hope :D

breve1970 said...

Hi Mon. Andre did really well for his SA1!. 92/100 for math and at P3... thats a fantastic grade!

Excellent job, Mummy and Andre!

Honestly, I think Andre is doing very well in school. He is definitely above average or one of the top few in his class. In addition, he is a school badminton player. Well done!

monlim said...

Thanks so much Ann! Well, he's not a school badminton player... yet. But we're getting there, I hope :)

Anonymous said...

Mon, the lastest post puts Andre's results back in perspective.

Congratulations!! for his good results. I believe P3 is the first big jump in academic speed and exposure from P2, the other is P5.

As for my child's "optimism", thanks for reminding me that it may turn out to be an asset. I suppose I cannot blame her much for having such thoughts because I am kind of Que Sera Sera in my ways at this point of my life..... :P


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