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Reflective review of knowledge and understanding.

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Introduction

REFLECTIVE REVIEW OF KNOWLEDGE & UNDERSTANDING To human beings, learning is an instinctive and intricate process. It is in essence, an assiduous journey which starts the very second we enter this world. The role of education therefore is to augment and consolidate this learning process thereby equipping the learner with knowledge and understanding of the world around her/him. However, there are underlying factors, which contribute to positive or contrary learning experiences. In this review, I shall discuss and analyse the factors that contribute to my competence in English and also evaluate the hindrances that I have faced in establishing a similar proficiency in Science. I shall also outline strategies for further development in Science by including an action plan to assist and contemplate the identified subject knowledge requirements. In addition, this action plan will also incorporate ideas to expand and promote further capability in English. I was home schooled until the age of eight. I was taught to read and write Urdu and English by my mother and a well-meaning aunt. I recollect those experiences with great fondness because the aunt who taught me English had no children of her own and so showered me with constant praise and approval. School however, came as a shock to me since I found it arduous to sit hour after hour through facile exercises in grammar, spelling and punctuation. ...read more.

Middle

Dutta also discusses this in these words: "Poetry plays an important role in bilinguals' development of language and literacy. It helps them to tune into a new language and enables them to experience the whole shape and rhythm of the language." (DUTTA.M: BILINGUALITY AND LITERACY pg.118, ch.5) I went on to luxuriate in the same level of success in high school and later on decided to pursue English for my degree. While I received undiminished support for literacy at home, the same could not be said for my cognitive development in science. My father being an accountant and with my mother not harbouring any particular affiliation towards science, I was confronted with the daunting notion at school that this was one subject I knew little about. Because of the teachers' emphasis on reading and revising chapters from the textbook as well as the lack of any collaborative discussions among my peer group, I found it difficult to grasp scientific concepts such as Properties of Matter, Photosynthesis, Structure of the Atom etc. The only solution to passing tests and exams was cramming key facts and answers to vital topics. This resulted in decent grades but destitute scientific knowledge and insufficient learning. Experiments, a crucial aspect in teaching and learning primary science were conspicuously absent from the classroom and the whole learning experience suffered from a general lack of resources such as computer programs, video/audio cassettes as well as trips to scientific establishment i.e. ...read more.

Conclusion

When faced with career choices, I evaluated my options and seriously considered Biology as my degree subject but I was required to demonstrate a comprehensive understanding of chemistry. Faced with this handicap I opted for English and as Robert Frost said: "Two roads diverged in a wood, and I- I took the one less travelled by, And that has made all the difference."(The Road Not Taken) I shall now pinpoint areas of my strengths and weaknesses in English and Science respectively by means of the following action plan: AREA OF DEVELOPMENT ACTION REQUIRED TARGET DATE SCIENCE:- 1-LIGHT: Reflection & Refraction 2-ELECTRICITY: Parallel & Series Circuits 3-MAGNETS: Electromagnetic Fields. 4-CHEMICAL REACTIONS: Types of Reactions. Balancing Chemical Equations. 5-LAWS OF MOTION: 1st Law , 2nd Law & 3rd Law Gravity. 6-TORQUE & MOMENTUM 7-VELOCITY, SPEED & ACCELERATION FOR 1:- Self study through Wenham,M.(1995) UNDERSTANDING PRIMARY SCIENCE IDEAS, CONCEPTS & EXPLAINATION For 2 &3:- Form a study group with good friend Ibtissam Amtot, who has a degree in science. For 4 & 7:- Self study through resources in the University Library. For 5 & 6:- Self study through internet. E.g. www.wbateman.demon.co.uk/gcse.htm Dec 2003 Feb 2004 Apr 2004 Jun 2004 AREA OF STRENGTH ACTION REQUIRED TARGET DATE ENGLISH:- 1-COMPOSITION: Writing poems & short stories. 2-READING: Reading prose and poetry. For 1:- Compose a poem and write a short story by the end of this course. For 2:- Choose and finish reading one novel by the end of this course. Read some poems by Kipling & Frost. ...read more.

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