The marker’s report is an extensive document that requires patience and dedication not only to construct, but to read as well. Some of the points may not be clear to you, while others will seem so obvious that you will wonder why they needed mentioning in the first place. Rest assured, I share the same sense of bewilderment regarding this latter group of points- why were these errors made in the first place? Year after year, essay after essay, I come across the same errors- ones that I know are actually addressed at lower secondary level. Yet many of you take the path of least resistance: when faced with a writing situation you fall back on the style of writing that served you so well at the PSLE.
But my students, you are in Sec 3 now, and that brings with it expectations of greater precision in your language use, and greater maturity in your content. The lessons you go through over the term are not merely random time fillers. They teach you specific skills that will serve you well if you choose to use them. You will be moving on to Secondary 4 next year, and will be taking the ‘O’ levels. But the writing skills you develop in the next few months will be with you long after you leave school.
In so many ways in my life I have found that the pen is indeed mighty. (Whether it is mightier than the sword I cannot tell, having never used a sword myself!) Read this document carefully and contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions or comments.