Sunday, September 29, 2013

Cosmotots


  No, I haven't given up on blogging. I went on a little hiatus, no thanks to a few unexpected events which - - - I shall talk about in another blog post.

  So I was put on an assignment to do a write up of about a hundred over articles (each article should contain a minimum of 200 words - so that's about 25,000 words of write up I had to do!).

  During the assignment, I was discussing with my boss about writing skills in general and how I would get stuck for about 30 seconds for every 3-4 long sentences; thinking of ways to form the sentences or the best possible way to convey exactly what I want in the written word.

My boss has perfect english - and by perfect, I really do mean perfect. My english proficiency is, uhm, well in Malaysia people would say it's quite decent, above average but I know very damn well I'll be next to nothing in other English speaking countries, say, the United States.

So yeah, anyway, the whole discussion with my boss brought me back to childhood memories of my English classes out of school. At 4, I attended Cosmotots - an English Language center which, at the age I was, had me read books like Round The World in Eighty Days, Don Quixote, Man in the Mirror, Gulliver's Travel, Tom Sawyer and many more. Yes, at 4 years old - I didn't get a chance at Disney or Peter and Jane.

At Cosmotots, I also remember being made to sit down for two minutes everyday in the main hall with my eyes closed and the lights dimmed to the piano melody of Richard Clayderman's. These are pieces of memories I could still recall after 21 years.

Other than these pieces of memories, I remember one song. And one poem. This is random and many of you may not even know of the song and the poem I'm about to share here - but anyway, here goes...


The Song.

O No John!

On yonder hill there stands a creature,
Who she is I do not know.
I'll go and court her for her beauty;
She must answer Yes or No. 
O No John! No John! No John! No! 

My father was a Spanish captain -
Went to sea a month ago,
First he kissed me, then he left me -
Bid me always answer No.
O No John! No John! No John! No!

O Madam in your face is beauty,
On your lips red roses grow,
Will you take me for your lover?
Madam, answer Yes or No.
O No John! No John! No John! No!

O Madam since you are so cruel,
And that you do scorn me so,
If I may not be your lover,
Madam, will you let me go?
O No John! No John! No John! No!

O hark! I hear the church bells ringing,
Will you come to be my wife?
Or dear Madam, have you settled
To live single all your life?
O No John! No John! No John! No!




The Poem.

Some One

Some one came knocking
At my wee, small door;
Someone came knocking;
I'm sure-sure-sure;
I listened, I opened,
I looked to left and right,
But nought there was a stirring
In the still dark night;
Only the busy beetle
Tap-tapping in the wall,
Only from the forest
The screech-owl's call,
Only the cricket whistling
While the dewdrops fall,
So I know not who came knocking,
At all, at all, at all.


I remember the song and the poem because I was made to memorize the entire thing.

I can't say if Cosmotots is responsible for my thought processes but what I can say is that Cosmotots really did cultivate a strong reading habit in me, an interest in literature and of course, my okay Malaysian-standard of proficiency in the English language.



Feeling nostalgic now.



2 comments:

  1. Hi, glad you wrote about cosmotots! May I know how long you were there? Any significant values other than cultivate reading habit? Or it's just they make you read or memorise 'thingy'? Really appreciate your feedback!
    Thanks!

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    Replies
    1. Hi sorry for the extremely late reply. Well, I was in Cosmotots for slightly more than a year. Aside from reading they also did cultivate the idea of concentration - the sir would make us close our eyes for a good 2mins with classical music playing in the background and tell us to just focus on the music and relax our mind.

      They touched a lot on phonics - and no, i dont remember them using any memorizing thingy to help us read. I hope this helps!

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