2 kindergartens in Kuantan : ~ St Thomas where my mum was a teacher. ~ And then later, another Catholic church kindergarten (forgotten the name) where my mum was the principal. I went to kindergarten really young since mum was working there. I just tagged along, had some fun, learnt some singing and dancing. Going to school this early, did not make my IQ higher, but definitely built my confidence, especially performing on stage. I was the solo singer, the princess in most of the concerts, and the youngest performer in a dance we did for the Menteri Besar of Pahang (Stage fright? What is that?). 2 primary schools : ~ SRJK(C) Yoke Hua 育华小学 in Kajang for the first 3 years. Here is where my foundation was built, under the care of my maternal grandma. My confidence was further boosted by doing well in school story telling competition and singing contest. Ahh.. those were the nicer days.
Standard 4. When I asked Zara who this is, she said, "jiejie (Chinese: Older sister)"
~ SRJL(C) Kuen Cheng 2 坤成小学二校. When I was standard 4, my father pulled some strings and I got into this school (one of the best Chinese school during that time). I was placed in the last class (students were distributed to difference classes based on results, but I was transferred, my academic records didn't count). I could not speak a word of Cantonese (main language spoken in KL), was laughed at by my class mates. My teachers thought I was stupid because I came from a rural school.
I remembered the English teacher in my Standard 4 class was shocked one day when I said, "I didn't bring my book" in class. Her jaw dropped, "You mean you speak English?"
And then back home, my siblings called me a communist because they went to good English schools, while I attended a Chinese school, and my spoken English was not as good as theirs.
This was where my confidence was crushed. I still did well in school (from all my grandma's training to be independent and self motivated), but I no longer has the confidence, more so in public.
Secondary school : Kuen Cheng Girls' High School 坤成女中
My father gave me a choice when I finished my Standard 6 if I wanted to switch to an English school, but I chose to stay on.
Teaching medium for all subject was in Chinese, and some English was used for Maths and Chemistry. We only have 1 Malay subject, but on the years we had to sit for our SRP and SPM papers, extra Science, History, Geography lessons were conducted in Malay. If you don't meet a certain aggregate mark for that academic year, you have to be retained for a year.
It's very taxing (long school hours), lots of pressure, strict rules (no hair perming; no jewelry wearing; hair length must be less than 2 inches below the ears; no novels other than those approved by the school, Mangga or cassettes allowed in school; nobody can be spotted in malls or cinemas in school uniforms etc etc), but I survived the 6 years there.
After Form 5, my dad wanted to send me to Taiwan to further my studies. Stupid me has fallen in love with a cock eyed, hopeless man. I shelved the idea, but opted to do A-levels in Kolej Damansara Utama. The jerk joined me as well, just to watch over me (like standing outside my class room to see if I was talking to any guys). He got me to skip classes with him, and then hung out in snooker parlours instead. My A-levels result was the worst result in all the examinations I'd sat for throughout my life. I got 2Ds and an F.
I then worked in an English Language Centre which used computers to teach preschoolers. I was hooked on those 286boxes. I broke up with the jerk, my dad then was keen to send me off to Australia to join my brother. And guess what, I fell in love again, and decided to stay for the man (Stupid! Stupid! Stupid!). So with my interest in computers, I enrolled myself into ICL to do a Diploma In Computer Studies part time (with NCC thrown in). After 1 1/2 year of slaving, I used another 1 1/2 year to complete my Higher Diploma in Software Engineering in APIIT part time.
I was then going out with my hubby. Unlike those other selfish men, he encouraged me to further my studies. So after I got my Higher Dip, I packed my bags, and went to Staffordshire University England, for a year, to do my degree in Computing Science.
I could have gotten a degree at age 22, but because of my stupidity, I got mine when I was 28.
Was I the studious nerd, or the last minute hero?
I don't believe I was studious, but I was discipline enough to do some studying on and off, and then topped it off with last minute 'burning the midnight oil'.
Was I the class 'taiko' (big bully) or the teachers' pet?
None. I was too timid to be the taiko, and was not outstanding enough to be the teacher's pet.
What was the biggest rule I broke in school?
Perming my hair after I got my SRP results. I got a black mark in my report card, a WARNING or 缺点. (Actually I brought cassettes and novels to school to exchange with my mates and stuck them under the chair with masking tape to avoid being caught by the prefect, but I never got caught).
Three subjects I enjoyed
1. English - always did very well in school probably because we spoke English at home
2. Biology - I love learning about the anatomy of animals
especially the reproductive organs
3. Programming - Oooh, I just love doing coding, but if you ask me to do now, sorry mate, no can do
Three teachers that inspired me
None, don't believe any teachers have inspired me (those male teachers whom I spent lots of time
drooling over day dreaming about don't count). If there's one, it would have been my maternal grandma, teaching me, coaching me during my first 3 years of primary education, laying very solid foundation for me. Even when I was in England, she was still 'coaching me', telling me, "if you cannot take it there, come home ok? Ah Ma will pay for everything."
Who should I tag?? Hmm.. 1. King's Wife ~ I know a lot of 'wolves' out there would like to know about her past after she post her wedding photo) 2. Seng Kor (I'm doing this for Siao Char Bor, Jomel and Siaolin's SIL) ~ The hunk bare all. 3. Egghead ~ I wonder how you can write in Chinese and English so well, can share your academic background so I make sure Zara walk the same path?