Wednesday, March 22, 2017

A disengaged students plight

Here is a Whats app clip I would like you to examine carefully.

Unfortunately I have been unable to copy the video here. Highlight the whole url and click on open link on new tab.

The kid in the video would probably be classified as a dyslexic and accused of being stupid. To me it is obvious that he is smart and a confident kid. His problem is that he has not been taught properly. He has not been informed of the difference between reading in Bahasa Malaysia (Malay) and the English Language.

Please follow my explanation below carefully to understand why many kids are leaving school as illiterates when actually they are potential geniuses.

Listen to how he reads the word 'for' in the first line. He sounds the word something like the word 'four' without the sound of the last letter 'r'. There is only one sound for the alphabet 'o' in Malay and that is the sound the kid is using.

He has sounded out the word 'holidays' correctly and has used one of the the English sound for the letter 'o'. He however omitted the sound of the last alphabet 's'.

In the second sentence see how adamant he is with the word 'have'. He is confident enough to cancel the 'e; from the word 'have' as that is how it will be pronounced if it was a Malay word. Repeated teaching has got him to pronounce 'ha' of 'have' according to the English sound but the teacher is not helping him with the 've' part of 'have'. That is how it will be pronounced in Malay.

His pronunciation of 'time' is exactly the way one would pronounce it in Malay. He has used one of the two sounds of the alphabet 'e' (The only alphabet in Malay that has two phonemes/sounds is the letter 'e').

Does he have a problem reading the word 'Lumut'? No! And why not? It is because that is how it will be pronounced in Malay.

With the last sentence he has a problem with reading 'when' as this sound is not in the Malay language.

See how adamant he is about the word 'come'. He is reading it exactly how it will be read in Malay. 'Co' in Malay is pronounced as 'cho' as in the English word 'chosen'. The second part 'me' is pronounced as 'may' in the Malay language. ( The letter 'e' has the sound 'er' as in the English word 'early'. The second sound it can carry is 'ay' as in the English word 'bay')

As such the boy, in my opinion, is a smart kid who will shut down or become disengaged as the teacher had not taken the trouble to explain to the kid that the sound of the alphabets in English are different from the Malay language. AND we call these kids dyslexic and stupid.

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