PTEM held a Solat Hajat (Hajat Prayers) on Thursday, 25th April for its upper sixth students who will be sitting for the June AS examinations soon. The event was jointly organized by the Parent Teacher Associations (PTA/PIBG) and PTEM’s Syariah department, and attended by parents and a few selected students. The ceremony took place at PTEM’s Surau, attended by Imam Haji Malik bin Haji Jumat. A recitation of the Surah Yassin opened the event followed by the Solat Hajat.
The purpose of this ceremony is to beseech for Allah SWT’s blessing in hope that the students will be able to face their examination with composure and pray that they will receive a successful result.
“I hope that with this event, students will work harder for their exams and keep on remembering Allah SWT by seeking for his blessings in what they memorized, the knowledge they gain and the work they did,” said PTEM’s Head of Department of Religious Studies, Ckg. Hajah Norsiah binti Haji Amin.
One of the students said, “[Even though] it is not compulsory, however, if I want to do it, I can. And there is no need to force others, although I feel like it’s important as a Muslim to ask Allah for his blessings before facing the examination.” The student continued to state “If somehow the school doesn’t conduct solat hajat, In Sha Allah, I would do it, if I have free time, I would definitely do it, here in school or at home. Besides, it’s only 2 raka’at”
This event is the 10th Solat Hajat organized since PTEM opened.
The annual Autism Awareness Day of PTEM was recently held on the 4th of April, but this year was a little different, as controversy behind the usage of blue ribbons arose. As it turns out, we should be spreading Autism Acceptance, and using red ribbons instead.
Awareness does not automatically lead to acceptance, but not challenging harmful tropes and ideas can lead to harmful incidents… I am not broken, nor a missing puzzle piece, vaccine damaged or injured. I am a whole human being, just like everyone else.
It turns out awareness events have been labelled as “bewareness” events, and has been somewhat of a “no-go” zone within those in the spectrum. Especially with the re-emergence of “anti-vac” movements, where parents refuse to vaccinate their children as they believe that vaccinations lead to autism, the insensitivity targeted towards those in the autism spectrum disorder have been going on for as long as vaccinations have been a thing.
The event organizers of PTEM were aware of this, but did not do anything to change it with the excuse of having done the same thing since the awareness events were first established. But we at The Equinox, would like to ask for the understanding and compassion of those that will be holding the event next year, to keep this article in mind. Spread acceptance, not awareness, folks.
World Book and Copyright Day happens to be one of the world’s biggest annual celebration dedicated to the promotion of avid reading, publishing and knowledge of copyright, all quintessential nuggets of wisdom that serve both readers and writers well. On the 11th of April, in an effort to instill reading culture, especially among the school community, for the third year now, PTEM once more took yet another grand take at an organized event which took place at the school’s Multi-Purpose Hall. The event was attended by Yang Berhormat Khairunnisa Ash’ari as guest of honour.
The main highlights of the event last Thursday included the English Oratory competition which was done by the school’s ‘O’ Level students, followed by a choral speaking which was beautifully executed by the Performing Arts Club, much to the entertainment of all present, and the awarding of placement prizes to the winners of the events that had built up to the launch of World Book day, such as the Short Story/Prose competition and Scrabble Master tournament.
The heart of the event had been organized by the English Department in collaboration with the Parents-Teachers Association (PIBG) with tremendous success that saw coverage from local news channel, Radio Television Brunei, as well. All in all, a massively successful event that once more plays its role in influencing and encouraging future writers.
A total of 300 delegates from 25 schools across our country debated on sustainable global development at the 15th Borneo Global Issues Conference (BGIC) hosted by International School Brunei (ISB) from February 9 to February 12.
The opening ceremony of this year’s BGIC was blessed by her royal highness, Pengiran Anak Isteri Pengiran Anak Sarah binti Pengiran Salleh Ab-Rahaman. In her royal patron speech, she addressed issues such as the Paris Agreement.
PTEM representatives were led by Mr Alan Kendrew of the English department. A total of 25 participants represented our school in this conference and some of the PTEM students were given awards for their achievements. Mohd Raihan Bin Abdul Rahman was presented with The Best Diplomatic Delegate, Hajah Siti Nurul Amal Faizah Binti Haji Osman received The Best Resolution Award and our very own Editor-In-Chief, Wira bin Ejau @ Gregory Ejau was presented with the Most Well Spoken Delegate award in his forum.
The first keynote speaker was Hannah Testa from the United States of America who has been an environmentalist and animal rights activist most of her life — all 16 YEARS of it. Since the age of four, Hannah has made it her mission to fight for the planet and its future. Read more about Hannah at:https://www.hannah4change.org
During her keynote speech, Hannah touched issues such as how being young ( as she is 16 ) does not matter as long as we are passionate to make a change. This was one of her biggest drives to become an environmentalist.
The second speaker was Rita Kimani from Kenya who is the Co-founder of FarmDrive Limited, which is a social enterprise that connects unbanked and underserved smallholder farmers to credit. During her keynote speech, Rita explained regarding her company FarmDrive Limited and how it has helped over 3000 farmers in Kenya alone. Not only that, she also talked about how she went from a Computer Science major to the Co-founder of a company.
The PTEM delegates underwent several weeks of training in preparation for the conference, which was conducted mostly in the afternoon and on Fridays.
Borneo Global Issues Conference (BGIC) is organised by International School Brunei (ISB) and is an annual student-led model United Nations (UN) conference where participants represent various countries, sharing their views on current and real world issues amongst each other. They celebrate their 15th year anniversary this year.
Earlier this month, on the 12th of February, PTEM decided to put her green thumbs to the test, by initiating her very own enclosed botanic garden. The hothouse is cared by various members of our little community composed of Meragang’s very own. The green house is s step forward to realising and mitigating the wound that climate change has foisted upon our earth, it may be a small step but make no mistake of the impact it is going to make.
This initiative is taken by the From Garden to Kitchen Club. The club would like to introduce, if not enhance, the appreciation of simple and basic cooking skills, while obtaining ample knowledge in food and nutrition, personal hygiene as well as safety. When asked why they wanted to build a greenhouse, the tutors-in-charge said that the idea presented itself as they wanted the members of the club to learn new skills as well as deliver the novel information to the youth, with optimistic ideas such as gardening with hydroponics. So, a new idea arose, and that was the simple concept of Garden to Plate.
The Club members also expressed their appreciation for the guidance and assistance of Handri, Managing director of UZ urban farming as well as the cooperation and understanding of the existing tutors in the club. Fruits of their labour are still going through their infant stage, thus they feel a need to better their system. They hope to plant a wider variety of vegetables such as other green leafy ones as well as the more fleshy ones such as juicy, ripped tomatoes and fresh aubergine.
It’s a start. To healthier way of living.
“Neil Armstrong – One small step for man, one huge step for man kind.”
We at The Equinox would like to say congratulations and welcome to PTEM, your now second home!
We as seniors will admit that this hurdle is not going to be easy – some of us might even say that they are close to giving up yet we don’t want you think that it is ONLY going to be hard.
The sixth form life will teach you a lot of life experiences, provide you with amazing memories, and lifelong connections. So don’t believe the negative things that others say regarding sixth form! The teachers and students are here to guide you. Blurry future? Head to the careers department and they will make sure it’s all clear. Need someone to talk to? Just head over to the counselling room and a PRR member will definitely help you. So don’t be scared dear juniors! We are all here for you.
More than a hundred students and teachers from PTEM were involved in the dazzling display of patriotism for last week’s major event in Bandar Seri Begawan.
After weeks of practice in the school’s multi-purpose hall and Taman SOAS, our students and teachers as well as over 20,000 proud Bruneians came together, despite the overcast weather, to celebrate the country’s 35th National Day.
“Menjayakan Wawasan Negara” is this year’s theme, which is to accomplish Brunei’s Vision of the 2035 aspirations. Touching on His Majesty’s Titah,the Sultan said that he had high hopes for the young generation, believing that the youth can lead the country’s development. However, His Majesty stressed that the senior citizens should not be neglected despite having a strong focus on the youth, stating that they are the ones who need more support and care.
Through rain or shine, the citizens of our fine nation gathered together to pay tribute to our king and country. The citizens are so lucky to be in a kingdom that is one of the few in the world that still retains a prosperous and loving monarchy, with our beloved His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah at the helm, driving our country to greatness. Throughout the world, how many times has an entire NATION come together and unified as one? Away from riots, protests and parades, our country possesses something unique that can only be found and treasured within the heart of Brunei. The blazing heat, the rain and the long marches are part of our country, and they are a part of you. Embrace it for all it’s worth. For all this country is worth. For all our king is worth. This is yours.
A great multitude of students in PTEM suffer from a problem that would later define them: their future. Some may be certain of their lives, some are unsure and some may just be lost, looking for an answer. But they all have something in common– a future. The department attempted to give definition to the future of the students, equipping them with tools in the form of a career talk in order to face this common enemy of feeling lost. On the 28th of January 2019 the career talk gave thoughtful insight into the future, both locally and internationally, through various choices such as UBD, UTB, UNISSA, Cambridge, Harvard, etc. Furthermore, students were also provided with crucial information regarding scholarship; an opportunity to support a student’s finances should he or she ever attempt to study overseas. Careers department also informed interested students ways on how they could sign up for such opportunities. Scholarships are definitely beneficial, but it requires a demanding price—hard work and diligence. A word of advice from a fellow student: “If somehow you fail during your exams, always be reminded that that doesn’t necessarily mean the end. Seek for help, especially from the careers section, and perhaps you’ll find your way.”
The ringing bell marked the moment when every student rushed to the venues of their desired club. On the 15th of January 2019, PTEM started off the week with CCA registration for the upper sixth students which began after 2:30pm.
Despite the variety and number of different CCA clubs there are in the school, the Football Club, as expected, was flooded with male students right from the beginning. Another noteworthy CCA that also took the spotlight was the Cooking Club’s queue that took up at least TWO WHOLE corridors of space!
We hope that everyone gets to utilize all of their CCA Clubs to their fullest and gain valuable experience as well as a memorable time as part of something unique!
As hundreds of ‘A’ level students finally received their results on the 21st of January 2019, they flooded the halls of the school one last time before moving on with their lives. As each of them walked down the corridors, shouldering their own thoughts and feelings, we decided to go back to the beginning and follow the journey of the student’s struggle…in all of us.
“Not everyone who works hard succeeds, but everyone who has succeeded has worked hard,”
This is one of the exhausted but content slogans of a once struggling student, who, from the first moment of entering the school to the last steps he took out of the exam hall, constantly went through depression, sleepless nights and an uphill battle to try and survive. Even losing all his friends and his relationship didn’t stop him from working harder than ever, smiling through the pain, wondering each day: “Is it all worth it?”
Two years later, here he stood in front of the result board, finally getting an answer to his question.
It came in the form of B & C grades for his subjects.
This isn’t a made up story, this student EXISTS.
This student represents not only a large number of our happy seniors that have walked away from the board with their results in hand and tears in their eyes, but also the struggling student in all of us still trying our best to reach that board one day, too.
With that in mind, and a student myself, I have one last message for everyone’s efforts, struggles and tears: