Friday, April 11, 2008

Concerning Copying

From my experience as a Malaysian student for about 10 years now, we are often given assignments of copying texts, sentences, or even essays from Standard 1 until Form 5. Do you agree? If you agree, do you take the time to think about what are these assignments for?

In primary school, we usually do the homework given by the teachers faithfully, without questioning. But, as we grow older, we start to think about it – Why we need to copy such things? Does copying really help us? Then, slowly we realize that copying assignments are not at all helpful, instead it is a big burden for us students, with already a big pile of homework to complete. The scrooge in our heart will also scream out,” it is a total waste of pen ink!”

Copying may be originated from ancient China, according to what we have learnt in History. Ancient primary education in china focuses on identifying and learning ideogram writing, as well as copying and memorizing 9 books without understanding their meanings. Therefore, copying has become the norm for Asian education. Copying notes from objects such as History and geography, which require memory power is acceptable and unavoidable, but how about languages? Do we need to copy large bunches of sentences and essays to learn Chinese, English etc.?

The existence of a machine called the photocopy machine is sometimes oblivious to some teachers. Their excuse for not using the machine is that we don’t read the notes photocopied, but that is untrue, at least from my past experiences. I remember going through every single word on the photocopied notes that are given by the teachers, and some of my notes are disfigured with jottings, highlights and underlines. Some lazy people might not read the notes, but it’s their business! Don’t affect the productivity of us hardworking students just because of the attitudes of some people.

My role is done here. And now, it’s your opinions that matters. In your opinion, does copying helps?

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