It's Irfan the Intern again

BM Course at LEAD

There are a number of courses that I had to take upon being appointed as permanent staff at the university. And I had three years to take them all. This week I was scheduled to take a Bahasa Melayu course. It was a great course as we talked about things I loved, like sociolinguistics, language drift, history of the language and such. The lecturers who would deliver the course were my colleagues, Zaki, Jannah, and Noriha – who once played Rayha the Linguist. The BM course was to be held at LEAD. And I seem to recall knowing an intern who works there. Click on the images below for a larger view:

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Declare your action!

Work Excursion to Melaka

Previously… I was invited by the English Department of Pay Fong Middle School in Melaka to run RPGs and give a talk during their English Week programme. With my RPG gear in tow and Ain and Irfan as my support team, I was ready to for the events in the next few days on behalf of UniMAP. Day One: Year Zero Mini (2023-07-27) Because we were due be at the school after lunch, it allowed us time to recuperate from the drive the previous day. The storefronts along the beachfront road were closed except for one Indian Muslim restaurant, so we had lunch there. After Zuhur/Asar jama’ prayers, we headed there to meet with my contact there, the English teacher Kelvin. Thankfully, school traffic was not as jammed as the previous day. We easily found a parking spot. Then we went to the school’s language lab, where I ran Year […]

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At the former mechatronic engineering school

Invigilation at Semester’s End

It has been awhile since I invigilated an exam, as my own course is 100% coursework. No exams. I am a bit rusty at this. But this can only mean one thing: the end of the semester is nigh. And that means another thing: a whole lot more of grading, filing and planning for the next semester.

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Hisham at his office for the first time

Hi New New New Office

Back in January I wrote a post when we had to vacate my old new new office. After a few weeks of slowly bringing my stuff in, I am now using my new new new office for the first time. The a/c works well. All the lights too. I requested the help of the building’s cleaning staff to sweep and wipe dirt and droppings of the local fauna. Although I was alone here today, it felt somewhat comfortable. Over the next couple of weeks, I will be bringing in more stuff from the old office, most of which are now stored beside the dining table at home. Click on the picture below to expand it. However, a dire question arises. How do I run RPG sessions here if I do not have any chairs for visitors?

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Doom Agents 2023

Doom Agents: Stealing Crate 037

We had the room at the library for 2 hours. The group activity with my students took only 30 minutes. So, I introduced them to tabletop role-playing games. I thought that using Mini-YZE (with my own mods) would make it simple for them. Easiest setting to run for new students would be the Doom Agents setting. It is contemporary, and I can emulate modern spy and action moviews with it. DRAMATIS PERSONAE Chamice, Engineer – Tey Jack, Medic – Ooi Agent 47, Sniper – Danis Sniper Agent 47, Medic Jack and Engineer Chamice are assigned to a mission near Manaus, Brazil. The Approach The team, in an off-road vehicle, heads south into the jungle in the late afternoon. It is raining heavily and before them river with a strong current block their path. The bridge has been washed away. Chamise and Jack study the waters, then guide 47 to drive […]

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Participants need to figure out how AI apps affect student assessment and evaluation

Artificial Intelligence in Education

Last Thursday and Friday, my entire department and I travelled by bus to Hotel Neo+ in Penang. Instead of being a participant, the management slotted me in to present about the effect of ChatGPT in assessment and evaluation of students. Being mostly early adopter of a lot of online tech – except LiveJournal and TikTok – the management thought it was up to me to tell my colleagues about how prevalent artificial intelligence (AI) will change — is changing — the education landscape. The first workshop was about assessment and evaluation in general, ran by a person from UUM. My workshop was scheduled for after dinner. I began by going through my AI-generated slides. A few days before, I used, a site that uses the ChatGPT AI to help users automatically generate full slides! It was not perfect, but it was enough for a fake presentation. Then, I moved […]

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Dire Wolves are dire

DnD: Six Sessions in Six Classes

Once upon a time I ran five sessions of Dungeons and Dragons in five classes over the course of a week. Last month, in what purported to be a sequel long overdue thanks to the pandemic, I ran six sessions of D&D in six classes over the course of that week. It was during a Consultation Week. After all the consultations have been consulted, I had an average of  75-80 minutes to run a session. Not much time, so I used the same scenario framework for all six classes. Besides their own character names, I also allowed the students to name the region’s sovereign and their castles. Because there were many students each class, each player character is controlled by a team of more than one student. I have chosen to post text written by one player characters group from each class. As usual, please do not disparage the students […]

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Moving office: Jasin and I

Bye Old New New Office

Once upon a time I moved into this office. Now it was time for me to move out. It took a while to take out my personal effects. I had a lot of books and notes in here. Today as I was clearing out the last of my books, Jasin was also in the building managing the transfer of materiel from this building to our new location closer to town. We had a mock award ceremony with a bookend. What else could we do? Hope the new place is good.

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Group Two group photo

BELSA 2022

Recently I was invited to join Phase 2 of BELSA 2022, the Basic English Language Camp Satun organised by the Language & General Studies Department at our university. The Fun Begins We welcomed them for the first day with a sukaneka, followed by a “Create Your Own Island” activity later that night. Check out the gallery below to see all six entries. They assigned me to Group Two. The students of Group two were quite creative in my opinion. They even planned their island and flag using a IbisPaint X on a tablet. During the event those who were more proficient in English helped those who were not. The next day, the students had to  fill in the blanks in an English song lyrics. They needed to listen to a song that was played thrice. Also, the groups had to create their own storybook cover and write microfiction using a […]

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FTK1 and FTK12 together again for the first time

First Face-to-Face Class Since March 2020

The last time I taught a class face-to-face in a classroom was March 2020. It is now November 2022, almost three years later. In the interim, I have had the Remote Teaching tag for all the online teaching posts in my blog. I cannot believe it had been so long. It was good to meet students face-to-face in class. For the longest time, I thought perhaps the students were all AGIs designed to fool teachers into thinking students existed (just kidding, my students reading this!) Click on the image below to expand it. We are still in blended teaching mode, so only 50% face-to-face. Most of the classroom teaching are weighted towards the end of the semester. But it is a start!

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The winning island is the Island of Mages, with magical schools and geographical features.

SCALLOP’s First Programme

And so it came to pass, a bunch of us teachers came together to form a team to do CSR for our department at the university. It took some time, but ultimately we came up with a group name: SCALLOP, short for Strategic Communication And Language Learning Outreach Programme. Our First Thingamajig Our inaugural site for our CSR programme was the secondary school Sekolah Menengah Sains Tuanku Syed Putra here in Kangar. We made arrangements with the teachers and administrators to have our event with the school’s Form 2 students. On the morning of the first of October, our team gathered at SMSTSP and proceeded to greet the students, then we split into three huge groups for further things to do, such as ice breaking. Irfan was on site to help me with photography. The big event was Creating Your Own Island, where the students get to use their imagination […]

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TTRPG presentation slides

RPG Webinar for Mahsa University

After the meeting with MAHSA University last month, it was finally time to speak at the webinar that they organised entitled: Tabletop Roleplaying Games for Teaching and Learning Languages This was the first time I did an RPGs in education talk for an inter-university programme. Despite how I seemed,  I was nervous as heck and spent a lot of time coming up with the slides. A lot of the pages I wrote for it are brand new, requiring not just new text, but also new images. To view the talk on MAHSA University’s YouTube channel, click here. I hope this will be the first of many programmes where I attempt to convince educators of the benefits of employing RPGs as teaching tools.

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Showing of the TTRPGs

Visit to MAHSA University

Several weeks ago, I received an email from MAHSA University in Selangor. They would like to know more about using tabletop RPGs as teaching and learning tools, especially for their language classes. I set a date to meet with their faculty members earlier today, as we would be on vacation in Sepang. I also called my former student and current research assistant (not mine, actually) Aidil and we went for the meeting. Meanwhile, Irfan drove and waited in the car. During the meeting I introduced them to the world of TTRPGs by bring with me a bunch of books and starter sets which included maps, cards and pregenerated characters. Aidil helped a lot in explaining. No, I did not run a game for them, but I did explain to them how I ran RPG session in my classrooms with students.  A request by them for me to talk in an […]

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Anya the Co-teacher

Anya the Co-teacher

So Anya came over for a visit. I was teaching an online class when they arrived from Selangor. Young Anya entered the room, so I invited her to help me conclude the class I was teaching. This is what happened: Yes, we talked to the students about facehuggers.

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It me

Back in Office Once Again

After many months of working from home, having to run classes from the desk in the spare room, it was time to return to our offices. I am happy to report that everything is where they are supposed to be. Additionally, my office seems to be is regularly cleaned while we were all away… except for my broom. The broom that I bought for my room seems to have disappeared.

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