Wednesday, 21 June 2017

The Science Behind Cooking: What Actually Makes Food Brown?



Taken from Google Images


Ever wonder why your meat patties in your Ramly burgers taste charred and seared? Or the GSC popcorn you just bought have toasty, cracker-like flavors? Why does your cup of Starbucks hot coffee taste robust and aromatic?

Has it ever crossed your mind that what made these food taste out of the world? How do these food whose original forms aren’t that appetizing become so irresistible after being cooked? Where do they get the golden-brown like colour?

Turns out, it is all due to a certain chemical reaction recognized as Maillard reaction. Maillard reaction is named after the French chemist, Louis-Camille Maillard who discovered it in 1912. In layman terms, Maillard reaction is known as the browning reaction. Basically, it is a chemical reaction between amino acids and simple sugars in food which then leads to the formation of brown colour.

A photo of Louis-Camille Maillard
(Taken from Google Images)


During the process, simultaneous chemical reactions occur when amino acids and simple sugars in the food are transformed by the heat applied. Hence, the reaction forms brown pigments in a specific way where amino acids and simple sugars are arranged in rings. These rings reflect light in a way which gives the brown colour to the food.

The diagram above demonstrates the process of Maillard reaction 
(Taken from Google Images)


For Maillard reaction to occur, you need to apply high heat to the food. The heat required should be high enough (more than the boiling point of water, 100°C). High heat will dehydrate the surface and remove enough moisture to allow rapid Maillard reaction. Upon reaching more than 149°C, Maillard reaction starts to form the brown colours and emits nice aromas. 

Apart from that, water should be absent as water will not get hotter than the boiling point. Hence, this explains why food fried in oil are able to brown since oil has a higher boiling than water.
In the food industry, Maillard reaction is normally used in the browning of meats for steak and gives the umami taste in fried onions. It is also widely used in roasting coffee and creating crust in baked products such as bread, pies, and cookies. The process also takes place in making malted barley and chocolate. Without Maillard reaction, our favorite French fries and chips will not have the mouth-watering golden brown color and crunchy texture.

Before trying out the Maillard reaction, do remember that raising the temperature even higher than  180 °C will lead to the start of a completely different reaction which is pyrolysis. Pyrolysis is a dangerous reaction which causes food that is charred to be bitter and cancerous.

 So, the next time you dig into your food or begin cooking, say your thanks to Maillard reaction as without it, your food will never taste the same again!


COOKING TIPS!
To speed up Maillard reaction, do follow the tips below.

1. Dry the meat before cooking. 
You can either dab it with a towel or air-dry the meat. Or you can salt the meat in advance for more than 45 minutes or an hour. This is because salt draws out the moisture and salty brine is reabsorbed. Hence, the meat is more tender. 

This happens when meat has undergone Maillard reaction. It looks juicy and inviting
(Taken from Google Images)



2. Use fast heating 
If you are running out of time, you may opt for fast heating. Use deep fryers or blowtorches to speed up the Maillard reaction. 

3. Coat the food with flour
Maillard reaction requires simple sugar and starches break down in the presence of heat to simple sugar. Therefore, starches will be able to provide more materials (in this case, sugar) for the reaction to occur. 


References:

Nathan (March 20,2013) The Maillard Reaction. Retrieved from http://modernistcuisine.com/2013/03/the-maillard-reaction/

Schulze,E. (April 2017) What is Maillard Reaction. Retrieved from http://www.seriouseats.com/2017/04/what-is-maillard-reaction-cooking-science.html

Wikipedia (n.d) Maillard Reaction. Retrieved from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maillard_reaction#Foods_and_products_with_Maillard_reactions





Shared by Celine Woon
Guest Blogger


                            

Friday, 16 June 2017

Showers of Blessing


That feeling after drinking a glass of ice cold water on a hot day doesn’t just hit the spot but it also keeps you alive and allows your body to function regularly. With 70% of our body is made up of water, ensuring that one is hydrated all the time is important, especially in hot and humid countries. This fact is further emphasized by how a man can survive three weeks without food but only three days without water.

Much like us, plants need water to survive as well. But who gives them a drink? How do plants and crops which can grow in an area as big as twenty football fields acquire water without really moving? The answer to that is that it comes to them. 

When the sun warms up the waters from the lowliest puddles by the roadsides to the massive rivers, lakes, and oceans; it turns the water; which is in liquid form, into water vapor that rises into the air. That water vapour then forms clouds, which contain small drops of water or ice crystals. The clouds are formed way up in the sky which can stretch be as high as three thousand meters (which is the distance between KLCC and KL Tower) up to eighteen thousand meters.


As clouds rise higher and higher, the air gets colder and colder. This causes the water vapor to condense into liquid form. When the water in the cloud becomes too heavy, gravity causes it to fall back to the ground as rain or snow. This entire process is known as precipitation. Rain is important to keep our farmlands, jungles, and flora healthy and It also cleans the air of dust and keeps the air cool.



Experiment: 
See how precipitation forms.

Materials: 
funnel, plastic bag, glass jar or container, hot and cold water, ice cubes.

Steps: 
1. Pour one cup of hot water into the jar or container.
2. Place the funnel in the jar or container and make sure the contact point between the rim of the jar and the funnel is airtight. You can use tape or Plasticine for this.
3. Put the plastic bag into the funnel.
4. Pour the cold water into the plastic bag and add the ice cubes.

5. Observe what is happening in the jar.




















Fact: 
The world’s water cycle is never ending. It travels on a journey from the sky to the land or sea and travels back up to the clouds again!


Glossary of terms:
Hydrate [hahy-dreyt] anything that is chemically combined with water
Crops [krop] products from the ground that is consumed by humans
Vapour [vey-per] gas that is suspended in the air
Liquid [lik-wid] molecules that move freely but are not separated
Precipitation [pri-sip-i-tey-shuhn] the process of water vapor condensing into liquid form and falling to Earth
Flora [flohr-uh] plant




Shared by Surain A. Victor
Guest Blogger

Thursday, 15 June 2017

What is Social Entrepreneurship?




Today, social entrepreneurship (SE) is one the rapidly developing fields worldwide. In the United States of America, 22% of the social enterprises have over $2 million in revenue while in Australia, an estimation of 20,000 social enterprises constitutes 2-3% of the country’s GDP. As for in Malaysia, the industry is still undergoing development and has increased in numbers steadily.

So what is social entrepreneurship? 

Social entrepreneurship is the act of combining innovation, resourcefulness, and opportunity to focus on critical social and environmental challenges. A social entrepreneur is able to generate innovative ideas to solve social, cultural or environmental-related issues through their enterprise. They act as independent changemakers that use entrepreneurship principles to develop and manage their businesses.


The best example to illustrate social entrepreneurship is Bangladesh’s Grameen Bank which is founded by 2006 Nobel Peace Prize winner, Professor Muhammad Yunus. Grameen Bank provides loans to the rural poor to stimulate businesses and reduce rural poverty in Bangladesh. Another example is British celebrity chef, Jamie Oliver’s Fifteen Project. The project aims to help disadvantaged youths by creating better futures for themselves through the art of good food. 

In Malaysia, social entrepreneurship field is growing rapidly with the involvement of many Malaysians who wish to build businesses with the potential to impact the society positively. There are about 70 registered social enterprises in Malaysia which are mostly consumer-based associations, youth programs, animal protection bodies and publications. As social enterprises are mostly philanthropic, they grow rather slowly.





Hence, several bodies in Malaysia including Malaysian Global Innovation and Creativity Centre (MaGIC) and Genovasi are established to provide support to these social enterprises. The Malaysian Government has allocated RM20 million in the Malaysian Social Enterprise Blueprint 2015-2018 to support local social entrepreneurs.


Social Entrepreneurship in Gift Shops


In the Social Enterprise Corner of Petrosains’s XPLORASI Gift Shop and PETRONAS Twin Towers Gift Shop, we have been featuring several local products from social enterprises which are available to the public for purchases which are available to the public for purchase. The products are from, Simply Cookies (home-baked cookies), Earth Heir (jewelry, bags, and scarves) and Magicbird (children’s books).


Projek 57 (locally made cotton T-shirts and merchandises with meaning messages about Malaysia)

Green Yards (eco-cleaning products and eco-candles), Seven Tea One (chemical-free herbal infusion teas)


Biji-Biji Initiative (furniture made of recycled materials)

Social Enterprises’ Workshops


We, Petrosains supports social entrepreneurship by collaborating with social enterprises through our project, The GOOD Workshop series. The GOOD Workshop is an all-new after hour program to bring life-centric learning experiences to the socially conscious community. These workshops are held fortnightly on Wednesday evening. Petrosains had conducted several interesting workshops with several social entrepreneurship. For example, in collaboration with Biji-Biji Initiative, Petrosains had organized Mereka Workshop which focused on creating a motion sensing light with basic coding. Apart from that, along with Green Yards, Petrosains organized a DIY Eco-Soaps workshop where participants learned on making soaps made from used cooking oils. 






Shared by Celine Woon
Guest Blogger

Wednesday, 14 June 2017

Foie Gras: A Mouthful of Cruelty?


Foie gras is a luxury food that is popular and well-known in French cuisine.  It’s not popular street food but fine dining only the well-heeled could afford.  What is it made of?  It’s liver of a duck or goose fattened by force-feeding corn with a feeding tube, a process also known as gavage.  Cruel?  You decide!

History.  Even though Foie gras is a protected cultural and gastronomical heritage of France, its beginnings, at least gavage, is not French.  It owes its existence to the Egyptians, as far back as 2500 BC, who kept birds for food and deliberately fattened them through force-feeding. 


What is gavage?  It is forced feeding by means of a tube inserted into the stomach through the mouth.  In the laboratory, liquid compounds are administered directly into the stomach of mice and rats via a gastric gavage needle or a flexible tube attached to a syringe.  A similar technique is also used for babies - a tube carrying breast milk or formula to the stomach is placed through the baby’s nose.


How is Foie gras made or produced?  The common practice is having ducks or geese force fed with corn mush via a tube two or three times a day.  The objective is to produce fatty liver with a minimum weight of 300 grams.  A duck's liver weighs about 50 grams.  

According to advocates of Foie gras, the fattening of geese and ducks is based on the natural capacity of the liver of fat palmipeds to store large quantities of fat.  This process is reversible and when an animal is given moderate amounts of food, their liver gradually returns to its normal size.  Hence it does not harm the animal.  However, they fail to mention the harm caused to the animal’s esophagus and other parts of its body that could lead to a painful death.

There are also farms that do not practice forced feeding.  Hence the Foie gras produced is known as ‘ethical Foie gras’.  A farm in Spain allows his geese to eat what they want.  No force feeding.  They feed off the land. These type of farms are rare and the methods used is unconventional in this industry.


Gavage-based Foie gras production has attracted a lot of controversy due to animal welfare concerns about force-feeding, intensive housing and husbandry, and enlarging the liver. A number of countries and jurisdictions has developed laws against force-feeding, and the production, import or sale of Foie gras.  However, there are also a number of retailers who decline to stock it even though it’s legal.

Is it ethical for us to consume Foie gras?  You decide.  Do your research.  Are the methods practiced by farms ethical?  Finally, can you take that mouthful of Foie gras without feeling guilty? 



Shared by Azni Zainal Abidin
Guest Blogger

Thursday, 1 June 2017

Ramadan: Food edition

                                                          
The ninth month of the Muslim year has arrived and that marks the beginning of Ramadan, the holy fasting period for an estimated 1.8 billion Muslims throughout the world. Being in Malaysia, one has to know about Ramadan and the miles long bazaar that comes with it, which is just filled with the pleasant smells of a variety of freshly cooked food such as nasi lemak, sup ekor, sate, and so much more.

                                                                  Photo credit: assabile.com
                               
Aside from bazaars, the start of Ramadan also gives a chance for Muslims to increase their pahala; which can be roughly described as their heaven good points. The terms of conditions for those fasting during the holy festive are simple, aside from Sahur (Before Dawn) and Iftar (Sundown); Muslims are not allowed to have any food, water, sexual intercourse and even a puff of cigarette could nullify their efforts.

Photo credit: zafigo.com

The main problem of fasting is the inability to replenish one's hunger and thirst for long periods of time for those who are able and sane. So to ensure a relatively smooth sailing fasting month and the upkeep of one's health, adopting new positive habits and getting rid of a few bad ones is imperative. 


1) Eating too quickly 

Trust me, I know how it feels to gorge down every inch of food on the table with the speed of a roadrunner when the clock hits munching time. Even if you weren’t fasting it’s still going to be a bad idea by overworking your system with an excess amount of food which will only increase one’s weight, the chances of health complications and possibly the worst one of all: losing the pleasure of eating. So try the pleasure principle and learn the art of eating slowly especially during Iftar. 



2) Breaking with greasy food 

Research has shown that your body naturally craves food which is high in calories to stabilise the sugar level in your body during an empty stomach. This is not really surprising when you look at the majority's eating habits which usually include a large portion of fried and greasy food which just screams high blood pressure and regrets. Instead, why not follow the sunnah and break your fast with some dates and a glass of water? Dates are high in antioxidants, nutrients, easily digestible and it helps sate hunger. By easing into it, your stomach will definitely thank you. 



3) Having a balanced diet 

In general, one should always have the right portions for each respective food groups ranging from the most necessary such as carbohydrates to the least such as fats and oil. This is especially important during Ramadan to ensure that the energy gained is more than enough to last the long hours. 

Photo credit: Thinkstock/ elenabs


4) Do not skip Sahur(Pre-Dawn Meal)

Much like breakfast, it is one of the most important meals of the day. If one were to say, oversleep and skip out on, lasting the entire day can be rather difficult. During this period, it is important to include food rich in nutrients and energy providing which is high in complex carbohydrates, protein and fibre such as bread, spaghetti, grains, meat and your assorted vegetables. And for the love of god please do not dehydrate yourself by drinking caffeinated drinks such as coffee or carbonated drinks. Try opting for good ole h20 and see the difference yourself. 

Photo credit: pexels/ Julian Jagtenberg


5) Share your meal (Iftar)

The prophet Muhammad once said that "Whoever provides the food for a fasting person to break his fast with, then for his is the same reward as his, without anything being diminished from the reward of the fasting person." Not only do you rake in the rewards but eating together is that much more enjoyable and it evokes a sense of closeness which can help develop and deepen social bonds for all parties. 

Photo credit: The Star

With that, I end my article with a big thank you to everyone reading this and the internet because if not for it, this article would not have been created. May you all have a joyous 2017 Ramadan! 



Shared by David Mok
Guest Blogger

Wednesday, 24 May 2017

Whoops!


You just got home after a long and tiring day at work. You kick off your shoes, sit on your comfy cushioned chair and turn on the television to your favourite programs. Just as you think all is right in the world, you noticed a putrid smell in the air. *Click* Suddenly you remembered the half finished morning breakfast that you forgot to leave in the fridge and now it has become this mouldy and sour smelling abomination.


Sir Alexander Fleming, 1951.
Alfred Eisenstaedt-Time &Life Picture/Getty Images


Obviously, most people would have chucked it out in no time, but if Scottish biologist Sir Alexander Fleming decided to just throw one of his experiments gone wrong: humanity wouldn’t be able to reap the benefits of his life saving penicillin-the world’s first real antibiotic. Diseases such as pneumonia, gonorrhoea and food poisoning and much more would run rampant. With no cure, the death toll would definitely increase with the prospect of humanity’s future ever grim.

But what if I told you that this disaster was prevented or at the very least reduced because of pure human error? Fleming was studying a way to overcome Staphylococcus, the bacteria that causes such nasty diseases.

During his vacation from his duties as a bacteriologist at St. Mary’s hospital, he had returned to his dusty old laboratory when he noticed how there were mould spots covering his accidentally left open staphylococcus petri dish. In a fit of pure curiosity/ stroke of genius, he had put the dish under a microscope and that’s when he made a miraculous discovery: the mould spots had no traces of the deadly bacteria. 

    Science Photos/ Shutterstock

This mould was called penicillin chrysogenum and it revolutionised the world of medicine. 14 years later, in March 1942; Anne Miller became the first successfully cured patient thanks to penicillin which is still saving lives even today. Who said nothing good ever comes out of accidents?



Shared by David Mok
Guest Blogger

Tuesday, 23 May 2017

360-Degree Video







Shared by Celine Woon
Guest Blogger

Happy World Scratch Day!



This year, Scratch celebrates their 10th Anniversary during the month of May with more than 1,000 events happening around the world to celebrate #ScratchDay. Over the past decade, more than 18 million people have joined the Scratch online community. Scratchers have shared more than 22 million projects so far, with 30,000 new ones every day!

On specific occasions like school holidays, visitors can come to Petrosains to explore Scratch at our Innovation Lab. Otherwise, you can start learning from the comfort of your home by signing up to Scratch online at here . Start creating your own stories, animations and even games today, and share with others around the world!





Shared by Foo Huey Chyun
Guest Blogger

Friday, 19 May 2017

Say Cheese!



Canon, Nikon, Sony, Panasonic, Olympus, Pentax, and Leica are well-known brands for cameras. Just a push of a button and click! - the memories of a special day, event, person or place is captured on film or digital. The first permanent photograph of a camera image was made in 1826 by Joseph Nicéphore Niépce.

The three pillars of photography are shutter speed, ISO, and aperture. A camera shutter is a stiff curtain, or plate, in front of the camera sensor or film that stays closed until the camera fires which causes the shutter to open and fully exposing the camera sensor or film to light that passes through the lens. After the sensor or film is done collecting the light, the shutter closes immediately, stopping the light from entering the lens. Whereas an aperture is a hole or an opening through which light travels into the camera based on the allowed amount of light to enter. Once all of that is combined, a clear image of what is being viewed can be seen. 

Much like the camera process, the human eye works in the same way. Light travels through the pupil and onto the retina. The image is then sharpened by the eye lens with the pupil of the eye adjusting itself to the amount of light, whether if it's too bright or dark. As for the camera shutter, it is like the eyelids, which can blink in fractions of a second. The image is then stored in the brain.

The size of the pupil is controlled by the iris. Irises are what give our eyes colour, which is brown, grey, blue, hazel, violet, or green. When the pupils are dilated, they appear big, and when they are constricted, it looks like a tiny black dot.  This is caused by either an excess or lack of light within ones surrounding. When a pupil dilates, it dictates that not enough light is given meanwhile a dilated pupil is the complete opposite. 

 Dilated pupil

Constricted pupil


Experiment: 
To observe the dilation and constriction of the pupil. 

Materials: 
a friend, torchlight, dark room.

Steps:
1. In a dark room, shine a light onto your friend’s eye and observe what happens to the pupil. 
2. Turn the torchlight away and observe what happens to the pupil. 


Glossary of Terms:
Constrict [kuh n-strikt] cause to contract or shrink; compress.
Dilate [di- ley] to make wider or larger; cause to expand.
Retina [ret-n-uh] the innermost layer of the posterior part of the eyeball that receives the image produced by the lens.



Shared by Surain A. Victor
Guest Blogger


Wednesday, 17 May 2017

Seeds of Life



Where do plants come from? How did they grow out from the ground?
Babies come from mothers. At first, they grow inside the mother’s womb and come out into this world when they are big enough. Ok, so how about plants?

Seeds are found in fruits, such as an apple. When seeds drop to the ground, and with favourable conditions, they will begin to germinate. Germination is a process of tiny buds and roots sprouting from the seed. The tiny buds will grow upwards out from the soil and develop into stems and leaves. On the other hand, the roots will grow downwards deeper into the soil in search for water and minerals. This process requires energy that is stored inside the seed. Once the plant is mature enough, it will start producing its own fruits and the cycle continues.


Did you know that beans are a type of seed? They are rich in protein, complex carbohydrates, folate and iron. Green beans, along with coconut milk, are what make your bowl of bubur kacang hijau yummy, and kidney beans are one of the ingredients in a delicious bowl of ABC.

Experiment: Seed germination


Materials: 
green beans, tissue paper, small glass container.

Steps: 
1. Dampen a few pieces of tissue paper and insert them into the glass container. 
2. Place a few green beans at the sides of the inside of the container so that they are visible.
3. Leave it for several days.
4. Ensure the tissue papers are always damp by spraying water into the container. Do not overwater.
5. After a few days, notice the tiny roots and buds emerging from the seeds. 
Fact: The seeds from tomato that has been stored up to three years will still be able to germinate. 


Glossary of terms:
Germinate [jur-muh-neyt] to develop into a plant, sprout.
Womb [woom] the uterus of the human female and higher mammals.
Folate [foh-leyt] a form of vitamin B.
Iron [ahy-ern]a type of mineral for forming healthy blood.



Shared by Surain A. Victor
Guest Blogger

Friday, 5 May 2017

'Pembelajaran Bermakna' lawan 'Pembelajaran Tak Bermakna'.


Rumusan penting perkongsian para peserta bengkel guru berkenaan 'Pembelajaran Bermakna' lawan 'Pembelajaran Tak Bermakna'.



"Para peserta berbincang dan beberapa orang peserta bangun dan berkongsi pengalaman mereka berdasarkan soalan-soalan berikut ...

1. Apakah pengalaman pembelajaran secara formal yang paling bermakna yang pernah anda lalui? Apakah yang menyebabkan ia sangat bermakna?

2. Apakah pengalaman pembelajaran formal anda yang paling tidak menyenangkan? Kenapakah ia tidak bermakna?"

Menerusi perbincangan, para peserta dilihat telah mengaitkan pengalaman yang dilalui dengan 'siapakah yang mengawal aspek-aspek pembelajaran'.
Apakah itu aspek pembelajaran? ~ ialah perkara dalam sesebuah pembelajaran. Terdapat 3 aspek am pembelajaran, iaitu soalan/permasalahan pembelajaran, langkah-langkah penyelesaian, dan hasil pembelajaran. Bagi setiap aspek tersebut, antara guru dan pelajar, siapakah yang ...

1. ... menentukan soalan pembelajaran atau permasalahan?
- Bermaksud, siapakah yang dominan untuk bertanyakan soalan yang menentukan arah pembelajaran/penyiasatan?

2. ... menentukan langkah-langkah penyelesaian?
- Bermaksud, siapakah yang dominan untuk menentukan alat yang boleh digunakan, atau cara data direkodkan?

3. ... menentukan hasil pembelajaran?



Ini bermaksud, adakah permasalahan itu mempunyai banyak penyelesaian yang mungkin, ataukah hanya terdapat satu jawapan betul sahaja?

Dalam sesebuah pembelajaran berpusatkan guru, guru mengawal setiap aspek tersebut. Sementara dalam sesebuah pembelajaran berpusatkan murid, murid mengawalnya– bermula dengan aspek hasil pembelajaran, kemudian aspek langkah-langkah penyelesaian, dan kemuncaknya aspek soalan pembelajaran atau permasalahan.

Dapat dirumuskan di sini bahawa berdasarkan pengalaman, para peserta bengkel bersetuju bahawa 'pembelajaran bermakna' berlaku kerana mereka mempunyai kawalan ke atas aspek-aspek pembelajaran. Sementara itu, 'pembelajaran tak bermakna' mereka berlaku kerana guru-guru mereka dahulu menggunakan pendekatan berpusatkan guru.

Setiap pendekatan sama ada berpusatkan guru mahupun berpusatkan murid sebenarnya mempunyai kelebihan yang tersendiri disamping ada had atau risiko yang perlu guru bersedia menanganinya.

Namun, jika guru berhasrat untuk menjadikan pelajar lebih dinamik dan berani dalam meneroka maklumat dan merangsang inkuiri, hendaklah guru menekankan bimbingan murid menerusi pendekatan berpusatkan murid. Pendekatan
berpusatkan murid adalah teras dalam idea Pembelajaran Abad Ke-21.





 
Shared by Imran Arif
Guest Blogger

Tuesday, 2 May 2017

Keperluan Berfikir Di Kalangan Murid & Bagaimana Melaksanakannya



"Bahan pameran Petrosains, tingkat 4 Suria KLCC - 'Membina Jambatan'. Pelawat diajak berfikir tentang menyelesaikan masalah membina jambatan yang membolehkan model kapal lalu di bawahnya. Ada tiga tahap kesusahan masalah - membina jambatan berjarak 3/4 jengkal, sejengkal setengah, dan dua jengkal lebih - menggunakan 11 buah blok yang dibekalkan".


Keperluan Berfikir Di Kalangan Murid & Bagaimana Melaksanakannya

Berfikir adalah satu keperluan dalam menjalani kehidupan. Berfikir sentiasa mempunyai dua tujuan khusus iaitu untuk MEMBUAT KEPUTUSAN dan MENYELESAIKAN MASALAH. Oleh sebab kita sentiasa berhadapan dengan situasi yang memerlukan penyelesaian atau keputusan, maka kemahiran berfikir menjadi satu keperluan untuk menguruskan situasi dengan baik.

Dalam konteks pendidikan, kemahiran berfikir membantu menyediakan murid berkebolehan menyelesaikan masalah-masalah kehidupan dan membuat keputusan 'dengan berkesan' apabila diperlukan.

Jika demikian pentingnya aktiviti berfikir itu, apakah murid-murid kita telah diasuh dengan kemahiran berfikir yang betul? Jika guru berhasrat untuk mengasuh murid dengan kemahiran-kemahiran berkaitan, di manakah boleh guru bermula?

Guru yang berhasrat memupuk kemahiran ini di kalangan murid tidaklah perlu memperuntukkan satu mata pelajaran khas tentang berfikir. Apabila ada bahan rangsangan dan permasalahan untuk difikirkan, maka murid dengan sendirinya akan berfikir. Setiap manusia juga sudah 'dibekalkan' dengan satu kebolehan semulajadi iaitu rasa ingin tahu. Jika guru dapat mencantumkan rasa ingin tahu murid dengan bahan pembelajaran yang dihasratkan, maka murid akan berupaya berfikir. Jadi, guru perlu mengenalpasti rangsangan yang tepat untuk murid-muridnya.

Boleh jadi sebab utama murid tidak cenderung untuk berfikir ialah sama ada rangsangannya tidak merangsang atau kerana arahan / soalan yang diberikan tidak jelas. Rangsangan yang tidak merangsang bermaksud guru tidak menyediakan peluang yang mencukupi untuk pelajar membina rasa pemilikan (ownership) ke atas soalan-soalan pembelajaran; hanya guru yang boleh bertanya dan soalan yang ditanyakan juga mungkin terlalu kompleks untuk murid. Sementara tentang arahan / soalan yang tidak jelas, ini adalah keadaan apabila guru tidak memberikannya pada masa yang betul. Guru hanya memberikan arahan setelah pelajar mula berinteraksi dengan bahan dan hanyut dengan penerokaan masing-masing. Atau, boleh jadi juga guru tidak menguasai perbendaharaan kata yang baik menyebabkan lain yang diarah / disoal sedangkan lain tindakan / jawapan yang diharapkan daripada murid.



 
Shared by Imran Arif
Guest Blogger