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Teaching Writing among Weak and Reluctant ESL Learners in Malaysian Classrooms: Part 5 (MyMy-Q: A Te

MyMy-Q is a technique developed by me in 2011 after KONA and GORENG. MyMy-Q IS CREATED FOR EXTREMELY WEAK LEARNERS. If you still remember, I did mention in Part 4, my belief in developing confidence to write among weak and reluctant learners is strongly influenced by Gurrey's (1964: 67) recommendation - “The guiding rule for all written work ….. the children should not be urged to run before they can walk.” Therefore, MyMy-Q is only introduced after the learners have mastered KONA and GORENG. For further details about MyMy-Q, please click this link. .

I have to admit, in this MyMy-Q technique, the first two paragraphs in the essay are still not relevant to the essay question. The examiners of SPM 1119 may not recognise the first two paragraphs. However, allow me to explain the benefits of having these two paragraphs FOR EXTREMELY WEAK LEARNERS. First of all, the first two paragraphs will boost their self-confidence to write essays in examinations because even before they enter the examination hall the very weak learners are already equipped with two paragraphs which could be 70-90 words each. Secondly, these first two paragraphs solve the problem of starting the essay among highly weak learners. Without MyMy-Q, many of them would struggle to start writing their first two paragraphs. The third benefit of having these prepared paragraphs is that time will not be wasted in examinations. As you know, these extremely weak learners take a long time to write even a single paragraph.

MyMy-Q has been a success in my own ESL writing classrooms and other teachers' in Kedah too. Will MyMy-Q be a success in your classroom? Well, I would like to respond by highlighting what Freeman (2000) says. Freeman (2000) points out that any particular method cannot be recommended for success FOR EVERYONE as each method that is put into practised is shaped by several factors such as the teacher, students, teaching instructions and socio-cultural context. No doubt, whatever techniques that are shared in this blog may not work well in your ESL teaching and learning context. Nevertheless, you will never know unless you try. All the best to you!!

IMPORTANT NOTE: MyMy-Q is NOT for potential A, B and C SPM candidates. They are designed specially for extremely weak or weak learners.

[I presented my 10th paper with the title "Developing Weak ESL Learners’ Confidence to Write Compositions through Task-Based Language Teaching Strategy: MyMy-Q" at The 10th Malaysia International Conference on English Language Teaching (MICELT 2014) Conference 2014 at Palace of Golden Horses Hotel, Seri Kembangan, Selangor]


Freeman, D.L. 2000. Techniques and Principles in Language Teaching 2nd Edition. Oxford:

Oxford University Press

Gurrey, P. 1964. Teaching English as a Foreign Language. London: The English Language

Book Society

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