New Malay reading resources for pupils

Second Minister for Education Maliki Osman (right) and Malay Language Centre of Singapore centre director Mohamed Noh Daipi looking at teaching resources at the centre yesterday as it celebrated its 10th year. ST PHOTO: GAVIN FOO
Second Minister for Education Maliki Osman (right) and Malay Language Centre of Singapore centre director Mohamed Noh Daipi looking at teaching resources at the centre yesterday as it celebrated its 10th year.ST PHOTO: GAVIN FOO

Malay language teachers here who need to cater to students with ever-diversifying learning needs can make use of the Malay Language Centre of Singapore's (MLCS) arsenal of resources.

The latest is Mari Membaca (Let's Read), a reading resource package aimed at pre-schoolers and Primary 1 and 2 pupils, which was launched during the centre's 10th anniversary celebration yesterday.

The graded reading cards aim to nurture the pupils' pre-reading ability, enrich their vocabulary and enhance their basic comprehension skills.

All Ministry of Education (MOE) pre-schools and primary schools will get the cards, which come in three difficulty levels to cater to pupils' different needs.

At the event, the centre also launched a book titled Bicara Budiman Sarkasi Said (The Wisdom Of Sarkasi Said), chronicling the life journey and achievements of the local batik master.

The launch was attended by 345 participants, comprising lecturers, teachers, education officers and undergraduates. It was held both in person at the centre and via Zoom, with some tuning in from Malaysia and Indonesia.

Run by MOE, the centre was set up in 2010 to support the training and development of in-service Malay language teachers, and improve the quality of the teaching and learning of the language in Singapore.

When the circuit breaker earlier this year forced the centre to pivot from its usual face-to-face training sessions, it responded by creating a new suite of online courses housed on the Student Learning Space, an online learning platform.

These courses focused on key areas of practice under the SkillsFuture for Educators professional development road map for teachers, covering topics such as inquiry-based learning and differentiated instruction.

Second Minister for Education Maliki Osman, who was guest of honour at the event, pointed out the centre's significant contribution to teachers' professional development and in improving teaching and learning.

Dr Maliki, who is also Minister in the Prime Minister's Office and Second Minister for Foreign Affairs, said in his speech in Malay: "MLCS offers highly relevant and up-to-date courses that are comparable with pedagogies adopted and applied in the teaching of other subjects."

He also said that, with the increasing number of Malay families using English as their main language, "such a change in profile certainly poses a challenge in language acquisition and learning among our schoolchildren".

"As a result, students entering schools with diverse language backgrounds and having diverse mother tongue learning needs require teachers to equip themselves with extensive and in-depth knowledge and skills to meet the diverse students' needs," he added.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 24, 2020, with the headline 'New Malay reading resources for pupils'. Print Edition | Subscribe