Friday 26 September 2014

Exploitation Of Resources By: Sherman Teo

The world, it seems, is obsessed with what we take out. Historically it was just basic minerals and stones which, used for practical purposes, had very little impact on the planet. This trend has continued and now our world economy is centered on mass scale extraction of natural resources and minerals such as crude oil, gold, platinum, coal and various other natural gases, not to mention the ocean’s resources. Throughout the planet, mineral rich locations have been scraped dry, forced into war and destroyed as the environment is left in ruin whilst the ‘organizations of extraction’ seek elsewhere to mine, fight and get rich off the worlds natural resources. The lunacy of what we are doing to our planet will only be evident in generations to come. Not only is our economy dependent on a resource (crude oil) that is detrimental to our environment and running out but we have also created an economy that is centered around natural resources (gold and diamonds). Water too is a key element which is slowly being depleted, wasted and treated as an endless resource. So much of this precious resource is used to water large gardens, cool power stations as opposed to being reserved for human livelihoods. The suggestion that the next great wars will be fought over water is not unrealistic. Already in parts of Africa and on the Nile, downstream communities are opposing the overuse of natural water for upstream communities wishing to extend their crop growth and farms.

In my opinion, I think that Singapore is a developed country which is also spending large amount of resources and money on fossil fuels. We are using up a large amount of it to supply our houses with electricity and ensure that we are able to work our digital technology. However, little do we know the fact that this is destroying us as we too are destroying the environment. Many of the important resources around us have been taken for granted and that should not be the case as some of these are limited. With that in mind, we should conserve more, rather than to use up all of these which would tremendously affect our world.

Earth 'going downhill' as consumption rises, report says By JunTian

 Summary: From high above the earth, an astronaut launched the latest report card on the health of the planet which once again paints an alarming image of over-consumption and exploitation. From space, forest fires, air pollution, erosion can all be see. The report is clear that we're still going downhill, that our ecological footprint, the pressure we put on the earth's resources, continues to rise so we're now using 50% more resources that the earth can replenish and biodiversity continues to decline. The main feature of the Living Planet Report is the Living Planet Index which tracks the health of the world's ecosystems by monitoring 9,000 populations of more than 2,600 species.
It shows a near 30% drop in biodiversity since 1970, and an even faster decline in the tropics of 60%. However, the index for temperate regions rose 31%, as some species showed signs of recovery after huge biodiversity losses the previous century.

Opinion: I feel that it is extremely worrying that our resources are being used up so quickly. The fact that the adverse impact it has brought can even be observed straight from space shows how bad the situation is. Luckily, leaders all over the world are beginning to realize the importance of conservation and many have pledge to do more regarding our environment. For example, Denmark has  has pledged to double the nation's windpower and to wean itself off fossil fuels by 2050.I feel that other countries should follow its footsteps and start cutting down on over usage of non renewable sources. On the other hand, countries should use renewable sources like solar power, hydropower, etc. Although it might be expensive, it will definitely benefit both the country and the whole world in the long run.

Sunday 21 September 2014

Time is right for global focus on forests land right by ZhiGang

 Summary: Global fish stocks are exploited or depleted to an extent that without urgent measures we may be the last generation to catch food from the oceans. Research has shown that around 85% of global fish stocks are over-exploited, depleted, fully exploited or in recovery from exploitation. Also, large areas of seabed in the Mediterranean and North Sea now resemble a desert. The seas have been expunged of fish using increasingly efficient methods such as bottom trawling.

Opinion: In my opinion, I feel that Man are destroying the Earth using their bare hands. Many feel that it is all right to continue exploiting the Earth resources without knowing the outcome of what they did. Like for example, India burn down the forests just to use them for farming purposes. The aftermath of this area becomes barren after farming and farmers just continue to burn down more forests for farming. This resulted in massive deforestation and hurting the environment.

Friday 19 September 2014

Creativity and critical thinking in our education -Ryan

Summary: the government believe that all students can think well and be creative, and thus provide opportunities for student to develop. A way that have student to display their creativity is through their English composition. The development of creativity can start at a young age such as pre- school or primary education through play based learning. For secondary school and junior college, project-based learning should be use to allow student  to connect with communities which is an effective way to promote thinking. Henderson secondary is an example of a school that believe that it's student can think well and be creative.

Opinion: Schools should use their fund to provide student with opportunities to think well and be creative. If the school doesn't have enough fund, school should at least try and make use of resources at hand to provide opportunities.

Creativity and critical thinking in our classrooms by JunTian

Summary: Good thinkers are able to exercise sound reasoning and reflective thinking to make good decisions underpinned by values such as respect. They ought to be able to generate novel ideas. In the face of challenges, they are unafraid to manage complexities and ambiguities. All teachers must believe that all students can think well and be creative, and thus provide our students with opportunities to develop their critical and inventive thinking. Critical and inventive thinking should be developed from a young age.This brings me to the second principle for developing thinking, which is, good thinking should be deliberately developed within the context of subject disciplines and the total curriculum. This means that we need to teach students how to think critically and inventively in different subject disciplines. We need to model and guide students through the thinking process, using questioning so as to make the thinking explicit and visible in the learning. Most importantly, schools and classroom culture must consistently support and develop students’ thinking

Opinion: In order to cultivate students with critical thinking and creativity, I feel that the responsibility of teachers is the biggest. Teachers have to frequently ask students questions and encourage them to answer in different and special methods. This fosters creativity and allows student to get used and feel comfortable in answering questions.  Critical thinking and creativity is extremely important as it is definitely applicable to any jobs students wish to have in the future. Therefore schools and teachers should experiment ways to cultivate creativity and critical thinking in academic subjects so that students learn how to apply thing in the future.

Wednesday 17 September 2014

Singapore wants creativity not cramming by ZhiGang

Summary: Singapore’s schools have become global role models, with consistently high results in international tests but now the government is trying to cultivate creativity in the students as well. So instead of the traditional images of high-pressure Asian schools, they are trying new ways to learning for students like how students of Rosyth School went on a learning journey in a park with the aim to incorporate science topics and values such as caring for the environment compared to classroom learning.

Opinion: In my opinion, I feel that education should not just focus mainly on academics. Education consists of many aspects. Therefore, I agree with how the government is trying to inculcate new things into students for students will be equipped with new skills from the Co-Curricular Activities (CCAs), Values In Action (VIAs) that is provided by the school. This in turn helps to boosts a student’s characters besides the part on academics. This will in turn help the students in their life ahead.

Thursday 4 September 2014


Summary: Mr Lee introduced the Pioneer Generation package to thank all our pioneers who have sacrificed to build Singapore and they have overcame difficult and dangerous situations to build a sovereign, independent country. They transformed Singapore from Third World to First and they always looked to the future and strove to give their children better lives than themselves. He also mentioned the importance of education so that we can keep improving Singapore. He also emphasized the quality of education in Singapore regardless whether it is Universities, ITE or Polytechnics,  all of them producing quality students.

Opinion: I feel that it is really very meaningful to implement the Pioneer Generation package as our pioneers have done so much for the progress of Singapore and contributed more than we ever could. Therefore, introducing the Pioneer Generation Package can allow our pioneers to have more medical benefits which they definitely deserve after all they have done for our country. I also agree with PM Lee that every school is a good school. No matter where they are at, students should do their best and achieve the best that they can in order to do their teachers proud. They will also be able to contribute better to society in the future. Hence it is very important that all students study hard.