5 Steps to a Very good PSLE Chinese Composition without memorizing any Chinese phrases or good words.
I don’t believe a good composition is written with canned phrases or memorized words, so I set out to find out what makes a good composition without the above. And I found out that there are 5 steps to help any students master composition easily. (The catch is it is not a short cut and it takes time to train)
The principle behind the 5 steps are very simple too. You create the environment to increase the child to expose your child to a very Chinese environment intentionally and systematically. A little by a little, you create spaces for your child to expose to the Chinese Language.
How babies learn?
All babies start to learn languages via listening and interacting with their parents and surrounding people. So to short cut language learning, listen to lots of Chinese Language audios and speak to lots of people is the fastest. However, Chinese Language is really a family Language aka mother tongue, so if the house does not speak it, then the next source have to be friends. Even my daughters do not speak Chinese outside our house, No wonder Chinese Language is harder to cope with.
Then they start to speak the language, use the language.
Then They start to form speeches and learn to write the character. In school they start to put thoughts into essays.
How to create a Chinese environment via the 5 steps
Step 1, Read out composition sentences one word at a time.
Take a good composition in primary 6 level like this
and read out each words. do this for 3 months daily and you will recognize more words then the words you learn in textbook in a year. (Why P6 composition? I think if you are going for PSLE, there is no point learning anything lower than primary 5.)
Step 2 Good phrases/words?
The child need to highlight the good phrases and comment why they are good, did they expresses an emotion well or they describes an situation well.
By going through the process of identifying good phrases and good words using understanding, a child learns more than just memorizing those good words and phrases. After going through the whole essay, The child should be able to suggest how to improve the said composition.
Step 3 The stages of a composition
Most teachers classify composition into 3 stages from Introduction, body and ending. I Think 6 stages are a better structure from (1) introduction, (2) building up, (3) tension rises high, (4) Climax event happens, (5) ending of the events then I added a (6) conclusion to tell us the moral of the story.
In a picture composition, This structure will be like picture 1 is the introduction, picture 2 is the building up, picture 3 something happen and tension rises, picture 4 -5 the climax event happens, picture 6 is the ending and conclusion is added.
In a theme composition, the story will follow this story line too. This structure have 2 characteristics which most pupils are lacking. 1, the ability to build up a story until climax and 2, the ability to quickly end the story tying all the knots in character and story line.
Take the Mulan story, first there is this girl call mulan who is normal but likes swords. This is the hint that her fate is not in marriage. Then her father is recruited again but her father does not have a suitable son to hold his sword nor can he hold the sword well. This hints that mulan being the daughter, at the right age can uphold her father’s name in war. And surely she chooses to be recruited and fought the way up the ladder to be the general people respected. (This is the buildup to the climax) And surely she was given a wish by the King and she wishes to be back at home. (this is the climax where the circle goes around and she is back to her house.) Now to have an ending, we must tie the knot between her battle mates and her in her village. So the moral of the story is …… girls and women can do a part in their family too (could be a moral of the story).
And you will see stories are everywhere and they mostly followed some structure like the 6 stages of composition.