Tuesday, 5 October 2010

From Crawling To Walking To Running, We Move Upwards And Outwards Until We Die.

As a natural process of life, we fall in and out of things. We grow into some habits, and fall out of others. Undeniably, the most common phrase is, "We fall in love, we fall out of love," or something to that effect. This is just a short introduction for the main point of my post today: Falling Out of Love.

With Chemistry.

Dude, what did you expect?

The story starts way back when I was a kid. Constantly curious, always wanting to know why, poking her head into everything. Once I jammed the lock in the store room with a bit of wire because I wanted to learn how to pick a lock but the wire I had was slightly too thick. So the whole world came crashing down and it took my dad a couple of hours to get the door all fixed up.

And I read. A lot. Anything and everything I could find. From the ailments and sicknesses a toddler to get (I found a very informative book with lots of pretty pictures and diagrams) to Reader's Digest and all that sort of educational thing. And I watched a lot of TV. Whoever said kids can't learn anything by staring at the idiot box is either an idiot...or he's just jealous that he doesn't own one. Because most of what I've learnt about forensics, hypnosis, basically, the basis of my scientific and general knowledge came from two sources: Books and TV. I learned about thermite way before they taught us this in Form 5. I learned about DNA. And what I couldn't get from the TV or books I got from the Internet.

Naturally, it seems fitting that I go into science. And I loved every bit of it. Science explains everything so wonderfully. It's kind of like, you never truly see the potential of something until it's explained to you scientifically. It's when your eyes start to open and you go, "Hey...that's right."

Of all 3 sciences they taught us, Chemistry was my favourite. It was a combination of memory andhands on processes, and I loved it. I already had an ingrained sense of love towards science, and I didn't like Chemistry because the teacher was good, or because I like the teacher. No, I liked it because Chemistry opened my eyes to a whole new dimension.

When we came to college, the first thing they told us was that we could not memorise, we had to understand. And I believed in what they said, and I agreed wholeheartedly. So I sought to do the best I could.

What a fool I was.

This semester, the workload increased. I get that, it was expected. Nothing I couldn't handle. But then the lecturer started bombarding questions at us, and when we didn't answer, boy, did she get into a whole lot of shelling. It's moments like this that make me dread going into that class, my favourite class, because I simply don't know when I'm going to get chewed out and be made to look like a fool in front of everyone else.

The fact that the lecturer in question is strict partly contributes to the matter. My class does Chemistry homework and we go all frantic over it, because we're afraid that she's going to kill us if we didn't finish our homework. And I hate that, because I'm doing homework not because I want to challenge myself, or because I truly love the subject (yeah, I happen to like doing homework) but I do it out of fear.


I can't believe what I'm saying but it's true. I do my homework partly out of fear.

And is that the way to go? We're all scared and bullied into doing exercises, and no doubt, it's beneficial to us in the long run, but I can't remember how long ago when I used to do a couple of pages extra, out of my own choice, because I was truly on a run. And this sickens me because I'm near killing myself studying for Chemistry so that I can answer her questions and not incur her wrath on me, and I don't even like her that much. And I can't even be bothered to study ahead for Biology, which has turned into one of my favourite classes to go even though the material is boring, because the lecturer is extremely cool and fun. He makes everything so accessible and come to life. And I really enjoy his classes; I'd feel so guilty that I didn't do his work when I respect him that much. The only motivation I have to do well in my next exams is that, with his teachings, I managed to get an extremely high score for Biology, even higher than Chem, and I want to excel that score for this coming exams, because I want to see that look of pride on his face, to know that I am where I am thanks to him.

And no, this isn't an ode of love to my biology teacher. I don't do student-lecturer relationships.

I don't believe that this applies to me only. Everywhere I look I see that we are going more and more lax. The eager-to-please students from Semester 1 have all but disappeared. We used to ask so many questions, used to have so much fun in studying. Now, we are all shells of our former selves.

And that thing about not memorising? Yeah, turns out that we were yelled at for not having the information at our fingertips, that we needed to understand, not memorise. Sorry to burst your bubble, sweetheart, but we need memory work as well, yeah? What's the point of understanding the concept if you can't remember what you were supposed to understand?

If my self-censor hadn't been kicked into place a while back, I would have been so tempted to end this with a "Screw you."

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