Original source: Daily Express. PENAMPANG: The Students’ Creative Writing and Poetry Appreciation workshop held recently saw an overwhelming participation of 250 at St Michael secondary school.Master trainer Audrey Koh said that the unexpected participation was due to the interest by the students (and teachers). “We only expected 70 to attend but 250 participants showed up for the third and final day of workshop by Professor Dr Malachi Edwin Vethamani,” she said. The first slot was at Gaya Teachers’ Training Institute organised by the Department of English Language where 100 participants attended the hands-on creative writing course. This was followed by the fifth edition of the Meeting of Minds Creative Writing course tagged as “Write, teacher, write!” jointly organised by University of Nottingham, Semenyih campus and by Sabah State Education Department. Some 60 teachers attended the workshop and tried their hand in not only writing poetry but also taking part in the Poetry Slam Challenge where there were 10 prizes up for grabs. Sylvia Howe, main organiser of Word Power Sabah, was also present to conduct a poetry appreciation workshop for the teachers. Teachers from all over Malaysia took the opportunity to have a glimpse of how the programme was conducted and thus benefited from it. Originating from Sabah English Think Tank in 2011, which was founded by Audrey, today it has expanded to many workshops under her coordination. She was also the coordinator of Meeting of Minds 5.0 (MoM 5.0) to conduct poetry games to help teachers improve their teaching pedagogy and approaches. “I believe when fun and hands-on experiences are involved, the impact is long-lasting and the teaching techniques will be easily adopted and adapted to suit their target students when they get back to school. One of the aims is also to encourage more participation in writing and contributing to the upcoming charity book. Ten prizes were offered and a record number of entries totalling 35 individuals or pairs recited their original poetry. “St Michael’s secondary school graciously accepted to host this workshop and I am grateful to this gesture,” said Audrey. Meanwhile school principal Jennifer Asing expressed her gratitude for the meaningful project. She said such workshop is beneficial to the students and would go a long way to sustain their general knowledge and equip them with skills.
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