Friday, March 27, 2009
I thought they might send me to Kuching for the interview so maybe I'd have an excuse to go back, but NoooOOOooOOooooo the interview is in Kuala Lumpur. MARA's being so kind to me. Nevertheless, praise God that I'm shortlisted. I hope I will do well in the interview and not mumble and not have flu. There's also this "Ujian Psikologi secara online" that I'll have to take. What the heck?
Oh and Happy Birthday Pastor Vic!!
Written by Samuel K Lis Time: 10:15:00 AM
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
Does anyone remember the agony that pantuns brought me in the beginning of last year? Well I found some old pantuns that I wrote in Form 2 for BM class. Enjoy!
“Pantun Nasihat Kejayaan”
Ayam jantan suaranya lantang,
Adanya sayap tak dapat terbang;
Berimpian tinggi, berharap panjang,
Berazam untuk mejadi cemerlang.
Hendak berjuang mesti berdaya,
Tidak kira kritik dan kutukan;
Setiap perkara ada masanya,
Sabarlah untuk doa dimakbulkan.
Hidup bosan seorang nelayan,
Selalu diisi penuh harapan;
Memandang jauh menurut impian,
Selalu merancang untuk masa depan.
Bijih timah banyak dilombong,
Diusahakan oleh tokoh-tokoh;
Sudah berjaya janganlah sombong,
Berbesar hati janganlah angkuh.
“Pantun Nasihat Hati”
Di bilik saya ada almari,
Di dalamnya ada seekor musang;
Kita harus selalu berdikari,
Jangan selalu harapkan orang.
Tiada pisau gunalah gunting,
Tiada gunting gunalah kunci;
Kebersihan diri adalah penting,
Tapi mustahak ialah hati suci.
Di dalam hutan banyak rotan,
Di dalam lombong banyak galian;
Kejujuran jambatan persahabatan,
Hati ikhlas mengerat pertalian.
Pegawai keselamatan ronda di rantau,
Di rantau sangat senyap dan sunyi;
Bercakap benar janganlah terlampau,
Jangan sampai tersinggung hati.
“Pantun Nasihat Masa”
Banyak ular tidak berbisa,
Bukan semua orang makan cili;
Janganlah membuang masa,
Masa itu emas tak dapat dibeli.
Seekor katak menangkap lalat,
Pada hati itu ialah Jumaat;
Masa berlalu sangat cepat,
Jadi hargailah setiap saat.
31 Ogos ialah Hari Merdeka,
Itulah yang guru saya mengajar;
Jangan selalu malas bekerja,
Masa terlepas sukar dikejar.
Pergi ke Johor mengambil angin,
Pergi ke Pulau mengambil Pinang;
Bahagilah masa sebaik mungkin,
Hidup sistematik paling senang.
Di pinggir pantai pokok nipah,
Di dalam laut ikan tuna;
Jangan selalu berlengah-lengah,
Nanti terlewat insaf tak guna.
“Pantun Nasihat Kesihatan”
Pembohong dihukum potong lidah,
Masih balik rumah cari bini;
Jauhi rokok dan dadah;
Jauhilah najis pembunuh ini.
Rumah baru dibina dicat,
Dengarlah baik-baik nasihat;
Makanlah makanan yang berzat,
Untuk mendapat badan yang sihat.
Di ladang ayam menyara ayam,
Di hutan rimba mencari telaga;
Setiap hari mesti bersenam,
Badan kuat dan bertenaga.
Kakak suka menonton drama siri,
Tidak buat kerja rumahnya;
Jaga kesihatan dan kebersihan diri,
Bersih dan kemas tunjukkan hati mulia.
Samuel Kana Lis, 2005
Written by Samuel K Lis Time: 11:45:00 AM
Monday, March 23, 2009
It is so annoying that I have to watch American Idol on 8TV on Thursday and Friday until midnight because I don't have Star World on ASTRO. But anyway, here's my take on American Idol Season 8.
My personal favourite, at the moment, is, surprisingly, Megan Joy. Megan Joy Corkrey. Whatever her name is.
I loved her rendition of "I Go Walking After Midnight". I think all the other contestants are trying to be the best singer or vocalist but Megan Joy just has her own style that's not necessarily powerful but quirky. It's so fun to hear her overpronounce some words and shake her body in a funny way! I also liked her "Black Horse and The Cherry Tree" which makes me remember Katharine McPhee, losing finalist of season 5.
What's more, she had flu, but she still managed to pull off a quirky but beautifully jazzy performance which I like very much.
[Why is it that there are so few girls left? Now it's like, 3 girls against 7 guys...]
Secondly is Matt Giraud, who sang Carrie Underwood's "So Small". And he plays piano really awesomely too!
Danny Cokey's "Jesus Take The Wheel" is also to be applauded because it was brave to sing a contemporary Christian song but I just think he's too overrated. Other than these three, I don't really care about everyone else. Adam Lambert and his song "Ring of Fire" were both disturbing but in a strangely cool and inspiring way. My sister thinks that Kris Allen looks like David Archuleta but I disagree.
Nevertheless, my preferences will probably change in a while. Until then, Megan Joy Corkrey rocks!
[4 April 09: Megan's out, boohoo, but after 'I Go Walking After Midnight' she didn't sing any good songs, and I didn't like her attitude at the end, so now I'm supporting Adam Lambert, Kris Allen and Matt Giraud. I still think Danny Gokey's overrated. XD]
Written by Samuel K Lis Time: 1:31:00 PM
Tuesday, March 17, 2009
Today I begin my short-term working stint as a Pastoral Administrative Assistant for Reverend Victor Gonzalez. The purpose of this position, which is viewed as a ministry, is to support pastoral staff at GFS.
Reports to: Lead Pastor / Church Administrator
Position Status: Volunteer
There will be plenty of tasks and duties for me to do here, mostly organising things, typing stuff, designing and administrative. But while this is voluntary, I shall get free food, and free WiFi of which I am utilizing right now! I believe that I will gain plenty of work experience, and I get to serve God and help the church!!
Written by Samuel K Lis Time: 10:28:00 AM
Monday, March 16, 2009
I think that one of the pivotal moments in my arduous journey of Form 5 was watching Roger Federer lose his Wimbledon crown to Rafael Nadal in 2008. For the record, I just recently lost interest in Federer when I heard that his girlfriend is pregnant. I was disgusted; I was heartbroken.
But the bigger heartbreak was during that dark night when Federer and Nadal battled until the sun had set. It was so painful to see Federer lose to Nadal, after losing the French Open, then just this year losing the Australian Open as well.
However, something in me lit up when I witnessed how Rafael Nadal held the Wimbledon trophy in all its glory. Although I never was and probably never will be a Nadal fan because he beats my favourite players and pulls his tight underpants all the time, I was inspired by his win. It shows how hard work will definitely pay off, and that determination is the key to success. I took that as a motivation to work hard for SPM. I wanted to know the feeling of success; the intense joy of claiming what is rightfully yours.
But strangely, I didn’t feel anything much on Thursday. *sigh*
Written by Samuel K Lis Time: 2:41:00 PM
As my parents would probably tell you, my style of studying is not the best because I studied at my own pace. That suited me better because I couldn’t achieve much when I couldn’t concentrate. Bear in mind that everyone’s brain functions differently, and everyone’s capacity is different.
But one thing I firmly believe in, that has brought me success, is making notes. I personally feel that reference books should not be relied on all the time. Last year, I made my own notes for the whole Form 4 and Form 5 Sejarah textbooks. I regretted not doing the Form 4 one in 2007 because I had to work faster and harder in Form 5 to complete both years’ Sejarah content, but I knew I had to. I believe that making your own notes helps you to remember. This is because making your own notes requires you to process the information, filter out what is not important, and understand your material. Furthermore, I don’t trust reference books to give accurate information. And, making notes saves time when doing last-minute revising, which is something I am guilty of but I don’t regret doing. Last-minute revising is important, but revising consistently is even more vital. There is no shortcut to success. Many thanks to Pn. Umadevi of MES for stressing the importance of making notes and making sure we did our notes consistently.
Biology is also another subject in which I relied heavily on my own notes. For this subject, I used the SUCCESS Biology reference book as my “textbook”. I made my notes out of the book, especially of the important processes, diagrams and such things that need full understanding of the matter. One good example is photosynthesis. If you memorize the process of photosynthesis word-for-word, you may not remember it correctly in exam. However, I drew a diagram of chlorophyll, H2O, CO2 and the arrows linking everything together. That way, I remember the diagram in exam and explain it in my own words. Saves effort, saves time, gets you good marks. Other things to take note of is blood osmotic pressure, the heart, blood clotting process, transpiration, the skeletal structure, respiration, etc.
Studies have shown that mind maps help your memory. I am a firm believer of mind maps. Sejarah requires lots of mind maps. For example, when I study about the Renaissance and Reformation, I draw arrows to the Factors, the Effect, the People Involved, etc. (all in Bahasa Melayu, of course) During exam, I usually remember the locations where I jotted down the points. Again, I stress that everyone’s brain works differently, but you might want to give it a try.
Before making notes, gather your resources, make a general overview of your study materials, make a list of what you need to know. While making notes, write down keywords and phrases that are important. Underline, bold, highlight, flash cards, read out loud what you write!
Lastly, use lots of colours. Studies show that colours jog your memory. So, unless you’re colour blind, use plenty of colours in your notes. I used the Stabilo point 88 coloured pens to decorate my notes. It not only makes your notes look nicer, more creative, but it is proven to help you remember! One of the quirky things I did last year was sticking random pieces of paper on the wall and scribbling important things to remember on them. For example while studying Chemistry I keep forgetting the colours of phenolphthalein, so I wrote down that it is purple when alkali and colourless when acid. (did I get that right?) And other important things as well. =)
How to remember everything? Review, review and review until you feel over-learnt! Test yourself, teach somebody, use acronyms! For example, I used a rhythmic poem to memorize this: Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family Genus Species. Cleanse, Rinse, Repeat.
More tips from last year.
Written by Samuel K Lis Time: 2:40:00 PM
I always wondered last year, when should I study, how long? Now, everyone is different; some people work better in the morning, some people hit it off at noon, but some others are night owls. If you are like me, whose mornings are a burden yet the night beckons me to sleep, then choose the evening to study. Yet again, that’s just ME. You have your own special time when your brain is most alert.
Try to have a regular study schedule. I set a time for myself to study after dinner at 7 pm and the earliest I stop is 11.30 pm. However, I often get the timing all wrong, but as the saying goes, “It’s not how many hours you put in; it’s how much you put into those hours that count.” Try to study at the same place, preferably in a well-lit room far away from distractions.
I find that studying too long for extended periods of time does no good because your brain needs rest after awhile. I usually do four 30-minute sessions every night, with 10-minute or so intervals in between. Or rather, that was the original plan but my breaks usually lasted too long, oh well. Have everything you need ready when you study. If your mind is wandering, go to the next task. Usually when I find that my brain is not working, I just use the time to make notes. I spent many, many months just making Sejarah notes, but it paid off!
Always make a schedule, or a plan of some sort. If you fail to plan, you plan to fail. Oh and get the book “Study Smarter Not Harder” by Kevin Paul.
Written by Samuel K Lis Time: 2:39:00 PM
There is no higher rule. Pay attention in class. If your teacher is boring, too bad. Get some sour Mentos to chew on (don’t let anyone find out though!) to keep awake. Avoid talking in class when the teacher is teaching something important. Unfortunately, I don’t practice what I preach, but it’s better if you pay attention in Sejarah, Add Maths, and the Science subjects.
I always have pieces of paper in front of me when teacher is teaching. I would scribble down important things that teacher said, or diagrams the teacher drew. Write down keywords and points in an organized but flexible way. Write in your own words in a writing that you can decipher. Leave blank spaces.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions. I know you’re shy and you might be labeled incompetent or kia-su, but actually asking questions gives you the answers you need. If need be, go and see your teacher in the office. Or you can ask your smart-ass friends who should know the answers, and why? Because they asked the teacher.
Before class, read up what the teacher would probably touch on. After class, keep your notes properly and add to your own notes when you’re at home. Review what was taught! Review, review, review.
Written by Samuel K Lis Time: 2:37:00 PM
Everyone tackles the exams differently. Some do it slow and steady, some rush through everything and sleep the rest of the time, so do it in parts in a systematic order. I am guilty of doing the exam too fast so much so that I always have to tell myself to slow down to avoid careless mistakes. However, it is good to keep track of your time so that you have enough to time to finish the paper and check your answers.
My method may not be the best, but it is good for me. When I get any paper like English, Sejarah, Biology or Moral that has an essay, I will start the exam by turning to the back to see what are the essay questions. Then, I immediately start thinking of the points to add. Then I scribble down anything at all that comes to my mind at the side. Once I run out of ideas, then I start the front section of short answers, hoping that more ideas would come to mind. This is because essays usually carry the most marks. Watch the time so that you don’t waste time on short questions. Make sure you have enough time to finish the essay. If you feel that you’re running behind time, start the essay question, after that resume the short questions.
Always, always make an outline of your essay. Plan your introduction, order of your points and how you elaborate them. Scribble down phrases, keywords and idioms that you may need to use. For example, if the BM essay is about unity, quickly scribble down idioms like “Bersatu teguh, bercerai roboh” and “Muafakat membawa berkat” and others, so that you have them to use at your disposal.
When writing essays, get to the point. Explain connections, address questions well. My father always said, make every sentence a quality sentence. Avoid using bombastic words, but don’t be afraid to show off your language skills, but only if you have any.
Try to stay for the whole exam. However, if you’ve really done your best and there’s not much that can be done, just stay on! There was a special case last year. There was a Sejarah paper after the English paper. Most people finished the English paper quickly, almost everyone left early. Why? To study for Sejarah, of course! But it depends on the individual.
Most importantly, don’t panic if you don’t know how to do. Stay calm, do another question and then you come back to the one you don’t know. It will come to you soon. If not, then you panic. Don’t forget to bring everything you need, like you pens, pencil, eraser, ruler, calculator, log book, lipstick, water bottle, eye-liner, stapler and liquid paper. And your lucky charms, for good measure.
Written by Samuel K Lis Time: 2:35:00 PM
According to scientific research, music may help your brain! This is supposedly because our brain functions in waves, and music with the right rhythm may stimulate your brain. However, this is true only for Baroque music that has a steady and moving rhythm. Try to listen to pieces like The Four Seasons, Canon in D, Minuet in G minor, Swan Lake, etc.
Get enough sleep. There’s no use studying with a groggy brain. Studies show that sleep helps you to remember what you’ve just learnt better. Exercise is also good for you. It stimulates your brain, makes you feel better, and prevents you from gaining too much weight like I did last year. I gained almost 10 kilos from the beginning of Form 5 until after SPM!
Always finish your homework on time, or at least as fast as possible. Oh wait. DO YOUR HOMEWORK. Laziness does you no good. If you don't practice, you don't learn. But from experience, there is never enough time to finish all my homework. Because of this, I had to learn to prioritize which homework I do. Never put off Science and Add Maths homework, because they tend to pile up. Modern Maths is excusable. It's a good feeling when all your homework is done.
Group study is good as well. Although I didn't do much of it last year because no one wanted to do with me, the sessions I had with friends were fun. When we discussed, say, an issue about Sejarah, it kind of sticks to me for a while. Also, my heated arguments and discussions with my mom and sister about Chemistry and Biology gave me lots of insight and hindsight about the subject.
Having the right mental attitude is imperative. Read this amazing poem, “The Winner”. That should be all from me. Good luck and God bless! Listen to my song, "SPM" for some entertainment and realization that you're not alone in your battle for success.
Written by Samuel K Lis Time: 2:20:00 PM
Friday, March 13, 2009
Go to http://www.jpa.gov.my/2009/03/1030/lang/en/ to apply for JPA/MARA scholarship. You may also want to check out malaysia-scholarship.net for Malaysian scholarships.
As for myself, I'm only applying for MARA scholarship, because MARA rocks! I applied for Medicine. I must admit I hesitated before clicking that choice. Good luck to all of you!
[Editted: Application has closed as of now, you can check or print your confirmation slip here.]
Written by Samuel K Lis Time: 10:05:00 PM
There were 1,676 students in Malaysia (SPM 08) who got similar results with me, or better. Big deal. When I got my results, I didn’t feel any burst of joy or anything. One of the reasons was probably because a friend told me my results before I got it, so I was like, “Damn I wanted to find out myself!”. I did pretty well in SPM. So what? I’m still a rock star. I got my rock moves. And I don’t need you… Eh, eh, wrong song.
Either my soul and mind is still lagging and not yet realizing the magnitude of my small achievement, or I didn’t care about my SPM results, because somehow I don’t feel anything. Maybe that’s because I think that SPM results aren’t really an indication of how successfully you are or you will become. In fact, the most successful people in the world have meager or average academic results. What counts is passion and motivation, and lots of hard work. Talent or smartness or ability to solve an Add Maths equation is just an inconsequential small part of life, really.
Nevertheless, I must say there are plenty of thanks to go around. First of all, I want to thank my Mother whose positive criticism, nagging, unspoken praise and high expectations made me strive to do better and better. I want to thank my Dad for his advice on how to write essays, as well as his motivation and support, especially in financial incentives. I want to thank people like Daniel Chong, Anders and my darling sisters Hosanna and Esther who had encouraged me and given me tips to face exams, whether or not they were used or useful. Thanks to Esther for the additional pressure to do well and make the family proud.
I want to thank my teachers, especially Mr. Chia, who made Chemistry and Biology so easy to understand. I want to thank Mr. Pala (Moral tuition) for giving me tips and advice. Without him, my Pendidikan Moral would have failed because my school teacher sucked real bad. No offence. Thanks also to Mr. Tay (Physics tuition) for making Physics so interesting and entertaining. Thanks to Mr. Rama for Add Maths. Actually, I didn’t really benefit that much from Mr. Rama because he feeds too much. His spoon-feeding style of teaching actually forced me to go deeper into Additional Maths and figure stuff out on my own. Thanks to my class form teacher Pn. Jemaayah who is very warm and friendly but unfortunately not too good a Modern Maths teacher. Many, many, many thanks to Pn. Umadevi who taught Sejarah and inspired me to make the best notes and work hard for Sejarah. I think she’s one of, if not the best teachers I had in Form 5. Thanks to Cik Zainon, my BM tuition teacher, who together with Nathanael, Mahendran, Tejhpal and Isaac made BM tuition so, so entertaining. Oh and she actually taught very well too. However, no thanks to the not-so-efficient teachers, we know who they are but I hope you’ll improve, for the sake of the future generations who will suffer under your care.
For some reason I have a feeling that none of the above mentioned teachers will ever read this, but what the heck.
Thanks to Nathanael Long. I don’t know how, but I just feel that he made me do better, although we hardly even spoke to each other. Maybe it’s because I always wanted to beat him. No, not in the physical sense. It's like I was trying to make up for what I lack in size... Thanks to Tejhpal for bringing the book “Study Smarter Not Harder” which was very helpful to me, and for being a weird, funny and sometimes annoying friend who sat beside me the whole of last year. Not forgetting my good friends Matthew Lee, Lik Pin, Erica Lee, Sonia Chay, Boon Fang and Hong Shen who made school life less boring and more bearable. Also, thanks to all my smart-ass peers like Jeremy Lim, Ryner, William Tan, Ernest, Shiau Shuang, Kai Yuan and Kim Soon, who made me try hard to be as good or better than them. Congratulations as well for the excellent results. Thanks to my many Indians friends like Maha, Mine, Mena and Suga for being... interesting people to talk to. By the way, I had a classmate, Naeresh, who I thought looks like the main actor in Slumdog Millionaire. Just a little bit. No thanks to the people in my class and the next class who constantly intentionally aggravated and annoyed me. We meet people like these all the time in our lives. Thanks to my classmates who voted me as class monitor. That gave me lots of confidence and involvement in class.
Thanks to all the examiners in Malaysia who gave me good marks!! Whee!! I was actually quite worried about Moral and EST because the questions were so weird. And, I wrote like 5 or more pages in EST essay! I thought, sure die one, but somehow the examiners were either very kind, very experienced, they appreciated good quality and quantity English, or they were blown away by my unassailable levels of English in Science and Technology. Yeah, right. God’s grace, really! Not to be proud or anything, but I wasn’t expecting the other subjects to get anything less. XD
Thanks to the SPM invigilators who were quite funny to watch during examination. Thanks to my good health for not deserting me throughout the SPM exam. Thanks especially to Lik Pin and Sze Teng and everyone else for studying with me in the last minutes before exam, especially Sejarah. Thanks to all my classmates who keep telling me how “geng” I am, which bloated my ego and made me more confident. Compliments are cheap, but they go a long way. (Ever watched the video called “Validation”?)
Thanks to the GFS church members who prayed for me. If any one of you actually did. Thanks to EBC church members whom I miss at the moment, for… I don’t know. I just wanted to mention you guys here. XD If anyone even reads these lengthy things. Thanks to Auntie Lizzie for the stern “encouragement” in the guise of a lecture ON MY FIRST DAY OF CHURCH which really scared and scarred me for life… but it was worth it.
Oh no, did I forget to thank God? You see, I believe in this amazing God who loves each and every one of us. Without Him, I would be lost. He made me to be who I am. All glory be to God!
For you secondary school students, stay tuned for my very own tips to success in SPM! Meanwhile, my SPM song is still available for listening. XD
Some statistics to ponder upon:
- There were 442,936 students who sat for SPM in 2008.
- 6,277 students scored all A's.
- 1,676 students scored all A1's.
- Three students scored 16A1's. Damn! Xo
- There were 111 subjects offered in SPM last year. Strange number...
Written by Samuel K Lis Time: 9:05:00 AM
Monday, March 09, 2009
Yesterday, on the 8th of March 09, I joined an entourage of young adults to Sematan. I think the beach is called Sematan. I'm not sure about the waterfall and the other random places we visited. But it was a fun trip although there was some sadness in it because it would be my last time spending time with friends.
I am and always will be mystified, how a handstand turned into my new airline, "AirSam", by MitTangkaps at Facebook.
This was at a Bidayuh longhouse at some random place near the beach, I think. I wonder, is this how the longhouse kids learn their ABC and 123?
Does this in any way remind you of Slumdog Millionaire?
Written by Samuel K Lis Time: 9:40:00 PM
Friday, March 06, 2009
It is confirmed! It is written! SPM and STAM (whatever that is) results will be out on the 12th of March 2009!!
You can read the news at The Star Online and The New Straits Times Online.
12th March is a Thursday. It's not a school holiday, as far as I know. That's strange, since SPM results had always been out on holidays to avoid student traffic jams in the school. But that suits me just fine. I can meet my friends and teachers, say my last goodbyes... in a crowded throng of bodies in a state of exhiliration. Or depression. Depending on what we get for SPM.
I wonder what took them so long to announce the date. 6 more days!!! I can feel shivers up my spine, my legs are twitching, my ears are perking to know my results. Yet, I am torn between two places, my heart strings are pulled taut accross the sea.
SPM results here I come!
Written by Samuel K Lis Time: 9:41:00 AM
Thursday, March 05, 2009
Read this article about a New Zealand opera star, Dame Kiri Te Kanawa, who is credited for keeping vandals away from the area.
You know what I think? I can do that too... Have any of you heard me singing opera? My ex-classmates would know. Watch out, ye vandals!
Written by Samuel K Lis Time: 8:47:00 PM
Monday, March 02, 2009
I'm getting very annoyed. SPM results are coming out in less than 2 weeks' time, and there is still no official news about when it comes out. Speculation had been rife that results would come out in February, but it's now March and I'm still waiting.
National Service trainees will finish on the 11th March, so I expect that our dearest leaders in higher places will be kind enough to let the suffering children see their results first-hand. That said, the second batch starts on the 19th, so that leaves a time frame of between 12th to 18th March for the results to come out.
Having said that, the kind ministers have allowed the March school holidays to start on the 13th March, which is a Friday, bless their souls. Therefore, I predict the results to come out on the 13th. That's what my dad said anyway. Therefore, I have changed my flight to the 11th of March.
Did you hear that? I'm going to fly to Banting in the afternoon of Wednesday. That leaves me about 8 days in Kuching, really. But if the results come out before that, God forbid, I'll be in unbending resentment towards our blessed education system for the rest of my simple and endearing life.
God bless Malaysia.
Written by Samuel K Lis Time: 2:51:00 PM