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I am a Malay teenage girl, growing in a Malay environment and surrounded by my pure traditional Malay culture. I was once a very quiet girl, less confident, and tend to be at home rather than playing outside home. I was also a very passive girl and less spoken. Till my age of 4, when my mother sent me to Assunta Kindergarten at Kuantan, Pahang, my life began to change.
Assunta Kindergarten is a school which is based on Christian culture and English language. It was once a very old church. Mother sent me there because it was the only one school which was near to my house. On my first day at school, I was really scared. Not because of the people, but the language that they used, English. I was very clueless and speechless. Mother also did not know nor understood what they were saying. I was also the same as my mother. The only words I knew were 'hello', 'goodbye', 'thank you' and 'welcome'. At that time, I was also thinking that I was in some weird zone or in some other planet. I felt like an alien.
My classmates were all Chinese and Indian. There were only two Malay boys in my class and included me, there were only three Malay students in class. First class started and I was like deaf and mute person. I did not even care what teachers were saying and teaching. I just kept my mouth shut because I did not understand even a word and I could not reply them too. Deep inside my heart, I felt like crying because I was so afraid and felt threatened by my surrounding.
Luckily, there was a teacher named Miss Maria, who kept observing, assisting and teaching me along my learning session. She is a very sweet, lovely, caring and kind-hearted woman. Even though I did not understand what she was saying, Miss Maria never felt bored and kept helping me. Starting from the basic of English language which is alphabets, I kept developing my skills towards the betterment. Because of the help from Miss Maria, I finally managed to get top three best students in my school.
Then, I got into my primary school named Assunta Convent. It is just beside my kindergarten. With the skills that I gained through my kindergarten time, I became more confident to communicate with people around me. Not only that, I also could teach my parents and my little brother about the Basic English communication in daily life. My parents are very proud of me because not only I could improve my English skills, besides, I also could teach other people about this skills too.
One day, at my age of 8, my class teacher, Madam Alia asked me to join a theatre under English society which will be held soon for Teacher's Day. I was very excited and joined the theatre and played one of the important roles. It was a fascinated moment when audiences stood up and clapped loudly after my scene has finished. When I was 9 years old, there was a very famous movie named 'Harry Potter' which had become the movie madness among teenagers. I admired actor Daniel Radcliffe, who played the role of 'Harry Potter' in the movie. I wished to meet him one day and have a long chat with him. Hence, to achieve my dream, I began to watch the movie again and again and also tried to imitate the way they talked. Not only that, I always imagined that I am one of the actresses in the movie. How funny it was. I knew, my dream would never be real, but somehow I was really pleased to have that kind of extraordinary 'wish'. Thanks to my amusing ambition, I managed to enhance my speaking skills effectively and obtained best score in English subject's examinations. My English teachers also praised me for the excellent results.
At my age of 12, I transferred to Alor Star, Kedah, my mother's hometown. Our house is in the village area which are surrounded by old folk's neighbours and also in old fashioned lifestyle. Here, I began to make a lot of assumptions in my future time. Their slang is different than the slang I have used in Pahang. Hence, I took a lot of time to adapt myself in this new environment. Instead of English language that I have to develop, I also have to master myself in learning the slang of communication in Kedah. If not, I will be clueless if Kedahan people talk to me. As time goes by, I finally managed to improve myself in learning Kedah's slang.
One day, my English teacher, Madam Faizah asked me whether I wanted to join English Story Telling Competition which will be held in our school. She knew about my previous school's background. Therefore, she offered me to participate in that competition. I accepted it and because of the supports and helps from Madam Faizah and my family, I managed to get first place in the competition and furthered my participation until the national level. It was such a nice experience being in that level.
Then, I got into my secondary school, Sultanah Asma High School. When I first got there, my confident level of English skills was very high. I thought English would be such a piece of cake, similar to the primary level. But, my assumption was absolutely wrong. It became more advanced and challenging. My examination results also did not turn well. On that time, my confident level dropped immediately. I felt unhappy, confused and began to give up. Luckily, there were my friends, teachers and family who kept supporting me and never left me behind.
However, the more we are achieving something, the more difficulties we will receive. I started to practice speaking at home to enhance my pronunciation skills. Besides, I also began to communicate with my friends in English at school. Yet, there were some people who misunderstood my intention and thought that I was only want to show off my skills and kept talking behind me. I felt depressed and so disappointed. On that time, my secondary English teacher, Madam Anis met me and said, 'Never care about what people say about you, just live your life, and be happy'. I kept holding that word until now, thanks to Madam Anis. To gain more knowledge, I also began to instill my interest in reading English's fiction and non-fiction books and listening to English songs and radio-talk.
Now, I have further my study in Kirkby International College. I wish to become a great English teacher one day and to prove people out there that English is not a tough subject to learn. I also hope that my lecturers here in college especially my tutor, Dr. Karuna will assist me until the end.