All posts by Tristan Pang

Speech for the Festival of Education


The Future of Education: but not as you know it

By: Tristan Pang, March 2014

 It is a great honour to be here today. I know I am going to enjoy this opportunity to share with you my experiences and my thoughts on education which is a topic that really interests me.

About Me

But first, let me introduce myself…

I describe myself as a curious and fun loving 12-year-old. But for me, learning is an amusing game.

I attend Ficino School in Mt Eden where I’m in Year 8. I enjoy my school life and the responsibilities of being head boy. It might surprise you to know that I’m also a university maths student – but more on that shortly. At home, I work on my learning website and teach myself in multi-levels. I’m interested in pretty much everything; from the planets that make up the solar system to what makes a toilet flush!

I started reading fiction and non-fiction books independently before I was two years old. It was probably about this time, I became fascinated by patterns. I found that patterns are everywhere. Everything has their own unique pattern, even in nature, like petals on a flower. When I grew a little older, I found this type of patterning can be explained with maths – which is the Fibonacci sequence. In other words, I can see maths everywhere. It is very obvious and it makes sense to me.

I became very interested in mathematics from an early age. I kept exploring and discovering new concepts and the more I learned the more fascinated I became. Before I was five I covered all the available National Curriculum & NCEA maths books from Year 1 to Year 13.

When I was nine, I found that there was something called “private candidates” in the Cambridge International Exams. So I started sitting the exams and each year I moved up another level. I took the “IGCSE”, which is equivalent to NCEA Level 1, “AS” at age ten, which is equivalent to NCEA Level 2, and “A2” at eleven, which is equivalent to NCEA Level 3. I have earned the highest grades for all these exams.

I am now studying maths at the University of Auckland, which is actually my first time attending formal maths lessons as I’ve been teaching myself for the last eleven years. I really enjoy it. I am planning to be a full time student at the university next year. I am also self-studying some Cambridge Science and English subjects for sitting the exams later this year.

The most frequent question people ask me is: “What drives you to do this?” I think it’s my curiosity that drives me to explore knowledge, and my passion for knowledge that drives me to constantly challenge myself.

 My Education Experience (self-analysis)

I would like to share my learning and thinking based on my own experience, in order to explain how my education has evolved…

 1.    In-depth vertical learning

As I mentioned before, I started my education pathway before I was two. I knew nothing about what year levels meant. I simply ignored them and kept exploring upwards in a very in-depth manner. When I was nearly five, I started to go through the maths topic strand by strand. The strands are: number, measurement, geometry, algebra, and statistics. When I finished the strand of “number”, from the year 1 book to the year 13 book, I then moved onto the strand of “geometry”, again, from year 1 book to year 13 book, and so on.

As a result of continually learning these topics strand by strand, it made me keen to keep moving upwards. This is just like when I read a story book, I just can’t stop reading and I’m always very keen to find out what comes next in the story. And because of this excitement, it meant I could finish all 13 books in a couple of weeks. I then had lots of time to strengthen my knowledge and skills on the harder topics.

When I self-study for an exam, I like to grasp the whole picture first. Take my Cambridge IGCSE Physics as an example. I spent one week to complete the whole year’s syllabus. In this way, I could know what was related. I then linked up the related material to form a strand. It made me do the research and target the key concepts more easily. 

Likewise, this approach is also applied to all of my other subjects, including history, and geography, and other curriculum areas.

In the existing education system, the same topic is scattered over a number of years and jumps between topics. I know some of my friends find it hard to relate the topics to one another.

I found these scatterings and jumping into different topics like reading a chapter of a story book every year but you have to wait until next year to find out what happens next! As for me I like to enjoy a complete story or picture, and achieve a complete ending.

When dealing with my school level subjects, I normally spend extra hours to search more deeply and find out the reason behind the topic. For example, my school might only require us to spend one hour on a homework assignment but I normally spend an extra two hours researching the same topic for my own interest…. which is above and beyond the homework requirement. That way I feel like I have developed an in-depth understanding of the topic rather than just covering the basics.

 2.    Technology in Learning

 When I do my self-learning, I use books but I admit I couldn’t have done as much as I have without the internet.

I believe that the 21st century is truly the digital age. It has fundamentally changed everything. Technology enables us to not only learn more, but to learn more effectively, and at our own pace.

We are so lucky that the government has prioritized schools to have UFB installed by 2016 at the latest.

If our schools embrace the e-learning global trend, I believe the education standard will be lifted significantly.

I saw this for myself when I recently visited and spoke to the students at Pt England Primary School. I was amazed to see every student eight years of age and above using netbooks even though this school is located in quite a low decile area. What they have achieved is a great example for other schools to follow.

Khan Academy, Massive Open Online Courses (or “MOOCs”) and “schools in the cloud” are attracting a growing level of support. When I got stuck with a question when I did my A-level maths, I watched Khan Academy’s video on the related topic and it was really helpful. I also enrolled into the MOOCs’ on some interesting courses. They are amazing.

I’ve just finished reading Sal Khan’s book “The One World Schoolhouse” which I really enjoyed.

It would be a great idea if more teachers adopted his “flipped classroom” model where students do the conceptual learning at home and class time is used for problem solving and discussion. We could watch our teachers’ pre-recorded videos, Khan Academy, TED ed videos, or even my own Tristan’s Learning Hub – which I’ll explain shortly.  It’s fun for us to pause, rewind, mute, or fast forward our teachers as we wish. And at school, we do our homework with the teacher as the facilitator. We can find learning more interesting as we can take in a more active role.

With technology, everyone will be equal. We can choose to learn from any lecturer or teacher from any part of the world. This is the way we need to be thinking.

 3.    Flexibility, trust, encouragement, support

I am very lucky for I have already met many nice people who have given me flexibility, trust, encouragement, and support in my learning which has helped me a lot in pursuing my passion.

First of all, my school, Ficino, where I have been since year one. The school is deeply rooted in the values and teachings of Marsilio Ficino, a 15th century Renaissance philosopher. I enjoy philosophy and meditation and believe these are subjects that should be more widely embraced by all schools.

My headmaster, Mr. Crompton and the teachers at my school have never forced me to attend any maths classes. They trust me and let me do my self-studying during the maths lessons.

Then there’s Professor Eamonn O’Brien who heads the Maths Department at the University of Auckland. He is keen for the university to attract high-quality students and he helps me to thrive and be constantly challenged. He fully supported my enrolment in the university maths program; despite my age. Plus, I get to be his youngest student!

I like adults who are open-minded and support my passion for learning. I’m sure all kids would also like more adults to be like this too.

 4.    Mentorship

I feel even more excited about my future as, last year, I met my role model and mentor Andrew Patterson (RadioLive) who shares, advises, engages, and inspires me with a variety of topics.

He was my speech coach when I spoke at last year’s TEDx Youth event.

Andrew has helped me to develop a vision for my future, while offering a combination of support and challenge to help me in my quest to achieve that vision. For example, one of my goals is to help other people when I grow up. But Andrew made me realise that I don’t have to wait until I’m older. I should act now.  The launching of my new website “Tristan’s Learning Hub” is a way for me to share my gift for learning with others.

Andrew shares his unique knowledge and talents in a way that I obviously cannot experience within the confines of the four walls of the classroom by bringing real-world learning to me. He opens the doors to the wider world for me.

With the help of technology, we don’t have to meet regularly. Whenever Andrew finds something useful for me, he will email me and the new piece of information or the challenge enables me to think or keep exploring for quite some time. We also Skype when coaching is needed.

He’s a bit like a help desk that I can go to when I need advice or direction.

In my opinion, mentorship is one of the best educational approaches for meeting the needs of the students, particularly gifted and talented learners.

5. Perfect school day / Self-learning Day

Of course, it can be a very long day for us from 8.30am (or some start at 9.00am) to 3.00pm. Then there’s sports practices, school homework and studies afterwards. It’s really difficult for me to find time to do some in-depth learning during the weekdays.

I always dream of a perfect school day, which is where schools would each specialise in different subjects for half a day every day. Students could attend half a day at school in the morning with their peers doing some interactive activities or lessons such as PE, drama, music etc…, then in the afternoon, students would attend academic lessons outside their own school at their own ability levels, or home-schooling. The academic lessons could be held by different schools or institutions grouped by geographic location. So for example in Mt Eden and Newmarket areas, in the afternoon, Ficino School could runs all levels maths, Mt Eden School runs English, Auckland Grammar School runs science, St Peter College runs history, The Mind Lab runs ICT…etc. Everyone can meet their own learning and social needs from the morning school and afternoon school, irrespective of their age.

In fact, I’ve never understood why students are grouped together by age. It should be based on their ability.

The schools could specialise in a specific academic subject and the in-depth learning can be applied here. Schools would work together to achieve a common goal, and children get to work at their own pace and will also have a sense of being part of a big community.

A self-learning day in a week is also an excellent alternative I would like to see implemented. At the moment, I have a self-learning day which is on Saturday or Sunday. This is an important and very enjoyable day for me allowing me to explore something deep or something new. If we were to have a self-learning day, say on Friday at school, everyone can take this day to consolidate the whole week’s learning, plus explore something of their own interest at their own pace. I believe this is the way gifted and talented children like to explore knowledge themselves.

As students, we all have something that we’re really passionate about and yet all too often those passions are not able to be properly explored within a typical classroom setting.

This idea of a self-learning day would also allow our busy teachers to have an extra day for preparing lessons and checking our homework.

 5.    Peer to Peer Learning

In my university maths lesson, there is a two hour lecture and a half hour student-led tutorial. We are expected to solve the problems given with a group of not more than 3 other students. All members of each group must discuss the problems vigorously. We have to help everyone in the group to have full understanding of the mathematics involved.

I think peer to peer learning is an effective way of learning. We learn from each other while interacting. Our ideas can flow freely without the fear of making mistakes. I think this is not only effective for university students but also the students at high school and primary schools. And it’s not only restricted to the classroom but also creates a virtual platform where we can generate ideas with people around the world.

 My insight

I believe that in-depth vertical learning, technology learning and “Peer to Peer” learning are the effective tools that allow children to really excel. Based on this thinking, I am officially launching this weekend a website entitled Tristan’s Learning Hub (http://www.tristanslearninghub.org) for age 0-15 to coincide with this festival.

Would you like to see it?

[PLAY VIDEO]

As you can see I go through maths topics strand by strand using videos. So in the example you saw I start off with a topic such as triangles, then I progress up this strand and cap it off with trigonometry. This was the way I explored maths as I mentioned earlier. The learners will be surprised how quickly and how easily they can grasp the concept by adopting this vertical approach of learning. This is the reason why I didn’t specify the year levels in my videos to remove the learners’ psychological barriers.

My bigger goal is to help the students in the Less Economically Developed Country using this website. I want everyone in the world to be equal when it comes to education.

 Conclusion

Finally, I like our education system. It’s very balanced in its approach: academic, sports, music, personal development are equally weighted. But I’m a bit greedy! I want to have a better NZ and a better quality of life for everyone in the future. I believe education is crucial to achieving this goal. With higher education, people can earn their own living and be more responsible citizens.

Everyone has the opportunity to contribute to this goal.

At 12, I’m already trying to make a contribution. Others may start later but perhaps in the future someone might even start earlier than me. I hope so.

What’s important is that we all have a responsibility and an obligation to support education.

There’s an old African proverb that says “it takes a village to raise a child.”

In my village I’ve been very fortunate to have lots of people support me in my education.

Today, I represent all the other children in this country who want that same opportunity for themselves.

My hope is that we can all work together to deliver that opportunity for them.

That’s the challenge I want to leave you with today….

Thank you.

Translated from 30/11/2013 Chinese Herald page C1

From knowing Andrew Patterson’s story to

thinking about “mentor”

 

When Tristan Met Andrew Patterson

 In 2011, nine-year-old Tristan taught himself IGCSE mathematics and challenged the 15-16 year-old candidates. In the Cambridge International Examination, he received the highest grade A* and scored 97 percent. The news of his remarkable achievement spread from the southern hemisphere to the northern hemisphere. The media followed this IQ163 maths genius’s progress with great interest. The New Zealand Herald and Chinese Herald reported Tristan achievements, his family background and the story of his upbringing on 2nd of March and 24th   of March 2012.

In September 2013, he was recognised at the NIWA Auckland City Science and Technology Fair with his awarded project “Triple Layer Milk Bottle – is it effective?”. This put claims behind Fonterra’s new light-proof milk bottles to the test. Again there were reports on Tristan in the New Zealand Herald (10th of September) and Chinese Herald (12th of September). His excellent performance attracted TEDx Youth Auckland, which invited him to be the speaker at their 26th October TED conference at the Auckland Museum. Tristan was the youngest TEDx speaker in New Zealand.

TED is a non-profit organisation devoted to “Ideas Worth Spreading”. It started in 1984 with its headquarters in New York and Vancouver. The conferences bring people from three categories: Technology, Entertainment and Design. TED conferences bring together the world’s most fascinating thinkers and doers, who are challenged to give the talk of their lives. Their talks are interspersed with shorter presentations with some artists [u4] or musicians. A TED speaker or TED Master of Ceremonies is a passionate individual whose profession and presentation skills are highly affirmed.

Andrew Patterson is one of New Zealand’s most famous broadcasters and public speakers. He was the public speaking coach and Master of Ceremonies at the TED conference. Tristan met Mr Patterson during rehearsals and speech coaching sessions; this was also Tristan’s chances to meet his first mentor in life.

 Andrew Patterson – looking for the meaning and value of life beyond his profession

 Andrew Patterson graduated with a Commerce degree from the University of Auckland majoring in business strategy, marketing, and economics. After working in the banking and tourism sectors, Mr Patterson switched to a career in media in 1995. He was a business presenter with NewsRadio in Sydney for six years. In 2006, Mr Patterson returned to New Zealand to join RadioLIVE as a business editor. The media dubbed him as the most hard-working radio broadcaster in New Zealand. He has worked six days a week, including a “Sunday Business” programme at RadioLIVE, for more than six years.

During the course of his media career, Mr Patterson has travelled to more than 50 countries. He is an in-demand speaker and master of ceremonies at conferences and events. He also writes in the business review column. He is a voracious reader of business and economic literature and a close follower of global business trends, particularly around innovation and entrepreneurship. He also maintains an active interest in international politics, global financial markets and social justice issues.

He is busy and successful with a very positive and professional public image. It is hard to imagine that he always shows his concerns about a primary school that is in one of the poorest areas in Auckland: Point England School.

Point England School is a Decile 1 (lowest socio-economic communities) year 1 to year 8 school. Mr Patterson unconditionally lends his support to this school, which successfully received a sponsorship from Google for notebook computers for all students. Point England School is one of the four schools in the world that Google is using as a pilot to try out new tools within its Google Education suite. Although the sponsorship project is done, Mr Patterson is still following up the progress of the school and students, while the school always invites him to attend their major events.

Bailey is a 13-year-old boy who lives in South Auckland. Bailey participated in a confidence course run by Mr Patterson as he had very poor self-confidence and had never have the courage to speak in front of his class. When Bailey finished the course, he transformed into a different person – a person who is hard working and confident, and he even starts setting goals for himself. Bailey wrote to thank Mr Patterson; at the end of the letter, he said: “…I’d like to make you a promise. When I’m older I will get a great job and buy you a Lamborghini.”

Geniuses like Tristan have the dimension of seeing things that may be more comprehensive and in depth than the average child. It is more difficult for him to be convinced. However, Tristan strongly felt that in addition to teaching him the skills of public speaking, Mr Patterson is full of enthusiasm and dedication to young people. He is a very knowledgeable, convincing and reliable person. He can work effectively and efficiently and can pay attention to every detail. Tristan said, “Mr Patterson is my mentor!”

I told Tristan’s mum, Elaine, “Before Andrew Patterson coaches or guides anyone, he must have tried to understand and study the person first. This is my turn to explore his inner world.” Andrew Patterson’s life seems perfect. He has been seeking meaning and value beyond his profession. I believe he must have pursued the joy from his dedication and thanksgiving.

Having found a mentor – a wisdom and a gift

 In Greek mythology, Odysseus is about to set off for the Trojan War and he entrusts his son Telemachus to Mentor. Mentor is always dedicated to the care and guidance to Telemachus. Thereafter, Mentor became synonymous with mentor, meaning someone who imparts wisdom to and shares knowledge with less experienced people.

Mentors enlighten positive thinking and behaviour. He or she does not have to have a high qualification or substantial wealth, but he or she needs to understand the philosophy of life. In many cases, a book, a speech, an incident can become an abstract mentor. The current South Korean President Park Geun-hye has published “Meet the lighthouse in my life – Eastern philosophy”. She mentioned that she was inspired by lan’s “History of Chinese Philosophy”. She believed this book is her mentor.

My old classmate Jennifer told me, “I am close to the heart of the children, I always hope that they can create their own prosperous future at their best. I am pleased to be their mentor rather than knowing them going to the Ivy League.” I myself always reflect on why should we push the children to a prestige education institution? We should help the children look for a mentor instead.

If a person can find a mentor, it is due to his or her own wisdom; it is also a gift and a blessing. Arrogance and prejudice will scare a mentor away. I wish everyone could find a mentor in the new year of 2014.

 

Translated from the Chinese Herald 23/11/2013

Another Breakthrough of a Young Scientist

At the TEDx Auckland Youth conference last month, Tristan Owain Pang, who has just turned 12, delivered a very impressive speech, “Quest is fun. Be Nosy” to over 500 people at the Auckland Museum. The talk was about how and why he could achieve top grades in the Cambridge International Examination as well as self-learning and accelerating. He explained these with his exploration of science and mathematics. His distinctive analysis and his understanding of maths have gained applause and special attention. Audiences requested photo taking and autographs from him after his talk.

TED or TEDx is a non-profit organisation devoted to “Ideas Worth Spreading”. It started in 1984 in Silicon Valley as a conference bringing people from three categories: Technology, Entertainment and Design. TED or TEDx conferences bring together the world’s most fascinating thinkers and doers who are challenged to give the talk of their lives. Some of the renowned speakers were New Zealand former Prime Minister Helen Clark, former US President  Bill Clinton and Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates. Tristan was one of New Zealand’s youngest TEDx talk speakers.

What makes this boy so special and be able to step onto the stage at TEDx? Newspaper articles reported his achievements two years ago, which attracted the attention from people all around. Year 5 Tristan featured in the NZ Herald when, as a nine-year-old, he top-scored in an international Cambridge mathematics exam usually sat by students in Year 11. He plans to eventually work in the science research field, most likely in quantum physics or medicine. Two years on, what has he been doing?

Challenge the authority

Tristan is indeed extraordinary; as demonstrated in his speech, he was interested in exploration. Three months ago, he was recognised at the Niwa Auckland City Science and Technology Fair with his awarded project “Triple Layer Milk Bottle – is it effective?” that put claims behind Fonterra’s new light-proof milk bottles to the test. Tristan carried out three lots of testing on the new Anchor triple-layer bottles for taste, light and acidity.

The first two received positive results, but he said “something funny” occurred during the acid test when the milk was left outside – milk in the triple layer bottle degraded faster.

Fonterra had launched the triple-layer Anchor bottle in March, saying it protects milk from light and keeps it fresher and tasting better for longer.

Tristan’s project has been praised by University of Auckland and Fonterra scientists, and he now plans to carry out further repetitions of the experiment.

Fonterra scientist and brands innovation manager Olaf van Daalen said the work was of a very high calibre.

However, Mr Van Daalen said their own testing had shown the rate of temperature change in the old and new bottles was exactly the same.

“Even a very small difference in the starting condition of the milk will make a big difference to how quickly it degrades.”

Professor Conrad Perera of the University of Auckland’s School of Chemical Studies said the experiment would need to be repeated a number of times to draw any conclusions.

“The budding scientist needs to be congratulated and encouraged for his enthusiasm and enterprise … we hope he will think of doing food science when he is ready to enter the university.” Professor Perera said.

This young child has shown the scientist calibre – not afraid of authority, has the courage to face the challenge. This is something that needs to be encouraged.

 The whizz kid

Tristan is a Year 7 student at Ficino School. Two years ago, when he was in Year 5, he sat the IGCSE mathematics exam through the Cambridge international exam system and top-scored with 97 percent. Tristan was New Zealand’s youngest-ever candidate – and quite possibly the world’s – to sit the exam, normally done by students in Year 11. He did these outside his school hours. Most of his mathematical knowledge was self-learned. At the age of five, before he started primary school, he had already done Year 11 maths and has read all sorts of books at a very advanced level.

On top of maths, he is also a science genius. He was interested in the profound modern sciences like relativity, quantum, atom and molecule from a very early age. As long as it is not visible at first glance, he would like to explore it. He is interested in time travel as well. He wonders what would happen if we travel to the past or go to the future.

Perhaps it is his inquisitiveness nature that makes him keep exploring the unknown.

Tristan has many interests. On top of science, he also likes English, science, philosophy, Sanskrit, drama, piano and swimming. Sanskrit is known as the most difficult language in the world; however, he likes the challenge.

He is a cadet of St John and a squad member of the swimming club. He also likes tennis, soccer and table tennis, but his greatest interest is reading. He likes to work on the computer, but he seldom plays computer games.

Tristan was referred to a psychologist by his kindi for assessment. The result of the assessment showed that Tristan has exceptional gifted abilities for thinking and reasoning, both with language concepts and for visual / spatial reasoning. Scholastically, he was well ahead of his peers. He was found to have an overall score at the 99.99th percentile with IQ 163. An average adult’s IQ is between 90 and 110; 120 is considered to be intelligent. An IQ above 160 is extremely rare. Scientists believe that Einstein’s IQ was 160.

 Family education

Mrs Pang, Tristan’s mum, said his son exhibited a keen interest in learning from a very young age. “He is a very self-discipline child with very high concentration span. He pays attention to every detail. He started picking up calculation when he was a one year old; by two, he started reading independently; by four, he had solved all the brain teaser puzzles available on the market like ‘Think Fun’ games, which are designed for ages 8 to adult. I think it helped him to develop his problem-solving skills.

“Later on, he found those type of games were no longer challenging, so I put lots of very advanced science and maths books, and chapter fiction books next to his toys. The books aroused his great interest. In his young mind, he thought reading was also a game. A book is a type of toy.

“Tristan teaches himself on his own … we leave it up to him to decide how far he wants to extend himself,” Mrs Pang said, “also, we won’t pay too much attention to the minor details. For example, the format of working out a maths problem. As long as he can fully understand the concept, we will just let him move on to the next level. Repetition is something that makes a gifted child lose interest in learning.”

Peter Crompton, Tristan’s principal at Ficino School, said he recognised Tristan’s unique capabilities when he first met him. “I used to teach at Oxford University in the UK and there are some very, very intelligent people there … and Tristan is really special.”

An education expert commented on Tristan, “He should be able to start a more advanced learning, like going to the University of Auckland. With his talent and intelligence, he should demonstrate what he has to them, and they can help him excel and soar.”

Tristan is such a highly intelligent child and is very capable of skipping some school years. However, Tristan’s parents insist their son stay with his year-group at school, so his Cambridge studies are all done outside school hours.

An education expert said, “Many Chinese parents like their child to skip school year. Before skipping the school year, the parent should think carefully about their child’s social needs.”

Another teacher said, “Most gifted students are now buried in our education system, which is something that we cannot control, but we can choose how to extend them in their spare time. We have to respect their choice and develop their interest. There are not many students as talented as Tristan, but nurturing in a right direction can greatly improve a child’s learning interest.”

Tristan’s TEDx talk can be found here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sbMKX4J03nY.

Frightful Landing

Frightful Landing

By Tristan Pang, Year 6, 13/02/2012

 

Sucking the sweet from the thoughtful air hostess, my blocked ears suddenly popped open. We were descending swiftly. Almost as quick as sound, the roaring Boeing 737 plane caught the wind on its flaps. I could feel the thrum of the engines and the vibration of the plane in my skin when it danced on the fluffy clouds.

I felt a bit exhilarated when the grassy plains and clear streams down below were growing more and more visible. The cars on the state highway leading to the capital city were so tiny that they looked like ants moving their food home cautiously.

I was scared, screaming in my head, while butterflies danced in my stomach. The plane was metres above Port Nicholson. Was it going to land on the water? In no time, before I could figure out what was happening, the plane gave an unexpected jerk and slide briskly along the runway. It then de-accelerated and taxied into the pier….

Elements

Air (metaphor)

October weather in Auckland

By: Tristan Pang, Year 6, October 2012

You are the Greek god Zeus raging

           crazily round the roof trying to blow the world down.

Huff…puff…huff….  

You are the Anglo-Saxton monster Grendel cracking

          restlessly on the creaking beam trying to hunt men for your dinner.

Plink…plunk…plink….  

The grass sways, the trees rock, the clouds rolls.

You smash my cheek, stir my hair,

            pull my legs as you pass by.

Whoosh…whish…whoosh….

Fire (personification)

By: Tristan Pang, Year 6, October 2012

  Kindling, spark, then flames,

          lick a hole in the dark.  

The burning logs crackle, a symphonic melody

         breaking the silence.  

A wisp of smoke grows further, then rises higher.  

A flaring giant genie dancing waveringly

          that gives us warmth, light and hope.  

Fire (simile)

By: Tristan Pang, Year 6, October 2012

Fire is blazing red.

It tastes like hot chilli pepper,

    sounds like pork crackle being chewed in the mouth,

    smells like acid mixed with rotten egg in the lab,

    looks like a fiery giant beast dancing in the dark.

It makes me feel breathless and dazzling!

Water (simile)

By: Tristan Pang, Year 6, October 2012

  River is like waltz,

              cheerful and romantic.

Lake is like baroque,

              gentle and soothing.

Waterfall is like scherzo,

              lively and playful.

Ocean is like symphony orchestra,

              free and contrasting.