"This is my book. This book is mine."
A Form 1 boy repeated it a couple of times.. and then looked up to the teacher and said, "Eh! Sedap bunyinya, ya, Teacher?" He liked the sound but didn't understand what it meant!!!
Going through students' written work, I find sentences chopped half, left dangling, as though their mind wandered off somewhere in the midst of copying them down into their books. I hauled a student up and made him do his corrections. The same 'chopped' sentences appear, even though I had painstakingly written down the sentences. He is hauled up again and made to do his corrections yet another time. This time, he gets the answer wrong but the sentence is complete.
Yet another girl makes a mistake in her corrections. I write down the answer and make her do her corrections again. Second time around, the answer is still wrong... so it's back to the correction board again... And finally after 3 rounds of corrections she got it right.
I notice that my Form 1 students tend to complete their work for the sake of completing it... blind copying; there is no or very little effort to understand their error. 6 years down the road after primary schooling, English comprehension is deplorable. We are hardly shaping them the right way for shipping into the real world.
When we moved up to secondary schools long time ago, our work habits were more or less set by the primary school teachers. I notice different patterns from students of different primary schools and I am convinced that the kind of Form 1 students we get also reflects the kind of 'training' or 'work habits' they were instilled with. And it goes back to a great extent, their primary school teachers....