About Edison

Primary Four is a Whole Lot of Hard Work

Edison at the recent Edusave Awards ceremony – his first time

Edison started Primary Four this year, and I’ve been hearing complaints from him about how tough Primary Four is. It’s only February now, how can he (or rather me) endure till Nov?

Well, it’s not like I haven’t been through Primary Four myself, but sometimes I really do pity him. Why Primary Four has to be so tough? During my primary school days, I didn’t study so seriously. All I could remember was playing all sort of games with my neighbours after school. And there was nothing called ‘homework’ or ‘tuition’ back then.

The weekly Chinese 默写 (mò xiě: write from memory) is the real killer. He has to memorize a paragraph as long as 40 characters. This is on top of the spelling list (ting xie) with more than 15 new Chinese characters each week.

Last week, he struggled with his mo xie again. He was so frustrated when he couldn’t get it correct after several attempts. My heart cracked into half when I saw a tear rolled down his cheek. I told him to stop learning and go to sleep early. I’ve never push him too hard for exam, not to mention the regular spelling tests.

I don’t want his weekly mò xiě madness to destroy the joy of learning Chinese. I wish he could have a sibling to walk down the path of schooling with him. Someone who can share knowledge and experience with him. But there’s no one. It was all my fault. 😥

So, I thought of an idea! 💡

Instead of asking him to learn on his own, I sit down with him and learn together with him. Yeah! It’s good that I learn some Chinese words too. Grew up in a national school in Malaysia with English and Malay as the main languages, my Chinese vocabulary is VERY limited. And because I didn’t use the language for so long, I’ve almost forgotten how to write most of them.

So this week, I began learning Chinese ting xie and mo xie with Edison. It was a pleasant surprise that he enjoyed learning it now with me. 😆 So, the conclusion is – having a companion plays a part – be it your sibling or your parents.

Edison is an obedient boy who does all his homework by himself. I’m always very thankful for that. I’ve also never heard any complaints from his teachers about bad behavior at school or not completing his works on time.

Meanwhile, we’ll continue to shower him with love and support. Let Primary Four be smooth-sailing for him. 🙂


Rebekah Xiao February 21, 2017 at 12:37 PM

Hi, you are so lucky to have a well behaved boy. I have a P4 boy too so I understand their heavy school work load. I have to constantly nag at my boy to do his homework and tuition works. I also remembered my P4 times was never so tough!
Currently he is still with Berries Chinese enrichment, since he was in K2. I have been looking to change to another Chinese enrichment as I think he has outgrown Berries. Any good center to recommend for P4?

Emily February 22, 2017 at 8:24 AM

Dear Rebekah,
I also have to constantly nag him to do his work fast. He likes to take his own sweet time, but time is our enemy now. He has to do it fast and accurate. Else, he has lesser time to play and more time to do corrections. I’ve withdrawn him from Chinese tuition since mid last year as I’m not seeing good progress. Since then, I hired a tutor to give him 1-to-1 lesson. It was the best decision ever! I see that he has improvement and starts to love the language. 🙂

Laura Lee February 24, 2017 at 5:46 PM

Jia you!!!!! Don’t have kids myself but I see my nephews and nieces burying their head in their studies and I can’t imagine all that they must be going through

Emily February 24, 2017 at 5:56 PM

Thanks Laura. That’s the life of our 21st century kids. That’s why I always emphasise the love for learning. That makes it less stressful if my son enjoys learning to gain knowledge rather than for exam alone. 🙂


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