The last session on day one of the Comprehensive Assessment Program for junior high school students was the composition test and the subject was the phrase “she bu de.” Lin Meng-chun , principal of Miaoli County’s Wumei Junior High School, explains that this year’s topic can be treated on two levels: one is the reluctance to let go when it is time to say goodbye, and the other is the indecision or dilemma one feels over an issue. Students had to draw on a matter or event, recount the situation that gave rise to the emotion, and describe the feelings that surfaced as it happened and how they have grown or learned from it. This was not a difficult subject to score on, says Lin.
Lin says that this is a rather familiar subject for the students, who would very likely cheer, “Fantastic! This one is a no-brainer!” However, to write a sensational article will require a more in-depth description of of what happened.
Wu Yun-yu, a Chinese teacher at Taoyuan County’s Tzuyuan Junior High School, says that many test takers are adept at writing about getting graduated, but to get a high score, they have to write from the heart. For example, when writing about giving up a contest that you have prepared for for a very long time, you can describe the dilemma and psychological struggle that you went through, and how every time you let go of some psychological attachment, you grow from that experience. The essay will then have a higher meaning and more depth. A writer who knows how to expand into the past and extend into the future can easily score six points, says Wu.
Photo: Lin Hsiao-yun, Liberty Times
(Liberty Times, translated by Ethan Zhan)
1. indecision n.
猶豫 (you2 yu4)
例: After months of indecision, he decided to start a new life in Taiwan.
2. adept adj.
會，擅長 (hui4, shan4 chang2)
例: My roommate is adept at cooking, and I am adept at eating.
3. extend v.
延伸，拓展 (yan2 shen1, tuo4 zhan3)
例: We are planning to expand our business into Switzerland.
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