Archive : May 2018

Meta Learning

Mr Khemistry

Meta Learning

I’ve recently completed my reading challenge for 2018, twelve book, in four months and a week.
Realised that i’ve set too low a bar for myself. Walked right over it. Will be doubling the number of books to read for the rest of the year.

Reading and learning are intricately linked, but reading doesn’t automatically mean that you are learning. This shocked a new student when i meet him earlier this month.

I asked him, “How do you learn?” He replied, “I look through my notes, but after that i cannot remember the reactions”

*Sigh*

“You read and you forget. You write and you remember. You teach and you understand.”

Shared with him the analogy of learning how to ride a bicycle. “When you want to learn how to ride a bicycle, how do you do it?”

“I get on the bicycle and try to ride it…”

*Raised eyebrows*

“Oh….so i do, then i will remember”

“Yes, practise makes progress. Then when you have practised, try teaching it to someone who might be struggling with it. Then you hear it for the second time and learn better.”

“Oh….”

This brings me to a point about what i’ve learned from a webinar conducted  by Jim Kwik on meta learning, science of learning HOW to learn.

Schools mostly teach us what to learn, some may teach why we learn and the history of the theory. But not many actually teaches us HOW to learn, which arguably is THE skill to have in this day and age. Most of the information we are learning can simply be obtained from google online, so it makes little sense to memorise such big chunks of information…in so short a time…which stresses out many students, parents and teachers!

The way we teach the next generation is the same way that we learn from the previous, unless WE change as educators and parents. We need to teach them HOW to learn. Because formal education can make them a living but continuing self education will fulfill their highest potential. 

It is easy to do well in school because everything is tried and tested. You just have to observe the past papers and do them well, chances are you will do pretty well too. However, in the real world, things are changing rapidly. How do we best prepare our students to thrive in this rapidly evolving world?

The solution lies in teaching them how to learn and then letting them do the learning. But the bottleneck is time. Either we teach them how to learn, then they go home to do their learning/studying OR we do the learning/studying on their behalf and THEN tell them what to learn. No prizes for guessing which route we are taking.

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A visit to National Junior College

Mr Khemistry

Went for the choir performance at National JC last month. I must say i felt very proud of my student as she’s one of the four lead singers during the combined choir. Here’s a picture of her in action:

 

Choir performance

Choir performances always gives me the goosebumps…not in the bad sense. There’s something deeply moving about listening to a well-choreographed piece in a quiet hall…i can’t quite figure out why. Maybe it’s because deep down inside i’m a very atas person….(you can stop laughing now >_<) Decided that i’m going to bring my wife to a choir/musical performance at least once this year, hope she will like them too.

Had to leave at the interval as wife and son are waiting for me to fetch them home…but not before taking a picture with my other NJ student haha…

Picture before i go!

Hope i’m able to attend more of such performances in different schools 🙂 Realised i actually came to NJC for learningfest last year or the year before. That’s why it felt very familiar haha.

Kudos to all the students who put in so much effort rehearsing, job well-done!

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Thanksgiving

Mr Khemistry

Start-up phase

It has been about one year since we started Mr Khemistry. Looking back in this 12 months, there’s plenty to give thanks for.

  1. Friends who have been there, done that. Thanks Irwin, for your encouragement, advice and all those chairs. Irwin runs a renowned GP tuition centre, Irwin’s Study at Bukit Timah Shopping Centre.
  2. My ex-cellgroup leader, David and current assistant cgl Huirong, for their invaluable help with setting up this website. From designing the logo, to copywriting, SEO building blog, embedding video etc. I still owe them a proper meal to thank them for all their help. Thank you David, your friendship is a great blessing to me.
  3. Speaking of video, i want to thank my ex-colleague Gary Xie from Hancus Media, for producing an excellent promotional video clip on my shoestring budget 🙂
  4. Friends, relatives, ex-colleagues, students, other centre owners who have referred tuition assignments to me. I’m always amazed by the tremendous amount of faith they have in Mr Khemistry. It’s quite impossible to list out every single referrer here, but i hope to pay it forward by referring students to other trusted educators.
  5. My wife, who has been very supportive of my decision to start my own business. Suffice to say, without my family as my unwavering support base, i probably would not have started Mr Khemistry.

Thankful for the many life experiences that i’ve had, even for those which felt like a dark valley. It teaches me that nothing of significance comes easily and anything that’s valuable is worth fighting for. I count my blessings daily (i try to write them down) and i’m amazed at how blessed i am.

Growth phase

I am excited to plan for the next phase of Mr Khemistry, as our basic day to day administrative procedures are settled.

We’ll be looking to scale up the size of our classes and our marketing reach towards our target audience. Also aiming to cultivate deeper collaborations with our partner tuition centres and conduct more public talks.

Publishing a guide book on Practical Paper 4, look out for it at major bookstores! 🙂

Personal development

Reading at least one book per month and to take up a teaching course online to fine-tune our pedagogy at Mr Khemistry.

Looking forward to your continual support and encouragement! 🙂

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