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Thursday, 11 December 2014

MUST READ - Study Tips: The Power of Spaced Study

Many students ask me this golden question:

"How to manage my study so I can remember my notes and excel in my exam?"

Here is my answer: we study by utilizing our brain. So, we need to understand how it works. According to Aamodt & Wang (2011), all the brain need is a well-spaced time.

Most of us would study according to this graph (every red dot is the study/revision session):

The students tend to postpone their revision until the very last minute. In other words, they procrastinate. I understand most of the students love the feel of adrenaline rush due to impending exam, Unfortunately, that is not the right way to study. Here are the three main reasons:

  • Our brains are not machines that can store information like memories in computers. Our brain is biological - like a tree, it needs time to grow and flourish. 

  • Our brains memorize by connecting brain cells into certain specific neuron path. And that needs time. That's why when we study last minute. even not sleeping the whole night, we would forget most of what we studied, because the neuron paths are simply not yet complete.

  • Our brains need a quality time to to shape and retain the memory. That's why we need a well-spaced time between our study schedule. This is because we memorize not during our study, but during our sleep and leisure time. That's why you frequently remember things/ find brilliant ideas during your shower.
"Singing in the shower..!"

Here is the graph of a well-spaced study:

By doing this well-spaced study, you give your brain the precious time to convert the information learnt into long-term memories. Now you know the secret of study - you just need to be consistent.

To prove my point, I asked the A-score students during an education research for my M.Ed. They would answer that being diligent (rajin/ 勤奋) is the key, not being born brilliant.

I realize most of the readers of my blog are not students, but teachers and parents. Here are final, golden tips for you to tell your students/children:


Sunday, 7 December 2014

Comic - Chromosome Structure Mutation

We learnt about mutation (mutasi) in the final chapter of Bio F5. Here is the simple note about the chromosome structure mutation (CLICK TO ENLARGE):


Tuesday, 25 November 2014

90 Days since the Departure of my Dad...

Today heralds 3 months since the death of my father, Taweesak Soontaravirat (Zakaria Tawee Abdullah) on 25th August. Usually, I jokingly tell my students that dead people are busy 'decomposing songs' by composing the music in reverse...

But when the news of his passing hit me that day, I was speechless. I sat down silently, thinking of how wonderful he had been my dad all these years. I admit that we fell out previously, and I regret that. Now I just have my mum. I shall treasure her while she is still around. I shall make more time to be back home regardless how busy I am.  

I hope God would give you His blessing and grant you a peaceful afterlife among the righteous souls.

EXTRA LAST-MINUTE REVISION SPM 2014 - Dark VS Light Reaction of Photosynthesis

(I'm still SMSing with few students who's not yet asleep even the time is already 1.30am. So, this is specially dedicated to you for this morning's exam.)

Light VS Dark. The ultimate manifestation of Good VS Evil.

In Biology , we have light and dark reaction of photosynthesis. The typical question would be to compare similarities and differences of light and dark reaction of photosynthesis. 

Give your answer in table form. Here is the example of a perfect answer outline:

As usual, each tick denotes 1 mark. So, you can easily score 11 marks from this answer scheme alone.

My final words for SPM 2014...


Monday, 24 November 2014

A Great Addition to the Family

Since many students expressed their gratitude with a few of my Physics notes in this blog, I gladly announce an offshoot of Biology Note Cikgu Heery.

They would make a great couple.


Sunday, 23 November 2014

BONUS SPM 2014 - My Sweet Auxin... (5 Features of Auxin)

My Sweet Lil' Auxin

Such a sweet girl so fine,
yet so shy to the shine.

Heralding from tip of fantasy,
gracing down elongating our reality.

Up in mind she stimulates us heartily,
down in heart she subdues us mindfully.

Let's analyze the above poem to identify the auxin features:

1. "...shy to the shine" - Auxin is sensitive to light (auksin adalah sensitif cahaya)

2. "...from tip..." - Auxin is produced in the plants' tips (auksin terhasil di hujung pucuk/akar)

3. "...elongating our reality" - Auxin works in elongation zone. (zon pemanjangan sel)

4. "Up in mind... stimulates..." - Auxin stimulates cell growth in shoots. (merangsang pertumbuhan sel dalam pucuk)

5. " Down in heart... subdues..." - Auxin inhibits cell growth in roots. (merencat pertumbuhan sel dalam akar)


Saturday, 22 November 2014

FORECAST 2014 FINAL TIPS - Cool Note: 10 Facts You MUST know about Intestines

Less than 72 hours before the Day. Let's discuss the overview of nutrient absorption & assimilation as shown below. Peruse and ponder my note here. Do it with your teacher/ friends. It could save your grade.


From here, we need to understand 10 questions frequently asked about the intestines.

This would be my final tips. This year was a blast. I will miss you all... 

Thank you for reviewing this blog and making it the best online reference for Biology SPM in Malaysia

Good luck! :-)


Saturday, 8 November 2014

FORECAST 2014 SERIES#4 - Clarifying the 3 Actions

We learnt the 3 actions coordinated by the nervous system. But can you clarify them? Here are the quick note for you guys. Indulge!

*the red-circled are the important ones that you MUST memorize.

CNS labels


Thursday, 6 November 2014

(UPDATED) FORECAST 2014 SERIES #3 - All About Ozone layer

Here are the typical questions examination asked about ozone. Just read this and you don't have to worry anymore about answering ozone-type questions :-)

"The Invisible Battle"

Q1) Function of ozone?
Protect living things on Earth from harmful sun's UV ray

Q2) Substance that causes ozone layer thinning?
CFC - Chlorofluorocarbons

Q3) Sources of CFC?
Cooling agents in refrigerator, air conditioner, & aerosol spray

Q4) How CFC causes the ozone layer thinning?
CFC converts ozone into oxygen gas and chlorine monoxide

Q5) Effects of UV ray to human being?
Skin, cancer, glaucoma, weak immune system - SGW - SG. Wang..?

Q5) Effects of UV ray to ecosystem?
-Kills phytoplanktons ('plants' in sea) --> affects food chain in sea
-Kills stomata --> reduce photosynthesis --> affetcs biotic components
-Increase Earth's temperature --> Global Warming
*I will take this off if this is too gore... :-(

Q6) How to reduce the impact of ozone layer thinning?
-Replace CFC with harmless HCFC
-Bombard the stratosphere with ozone gas


Friday, 31 October 2014

FORECAST 2014 SERIES#2 - Pancreas Malfunction


A doctor-patient situation is given below:

A) State and explain the effect of the condition above to the production of pancreatic enzymes and hormones (4 marks)

B) Suggest and explain relevant advice that can be given by the physician so the patient can manage his condition (4 marks)


Before we answer these question, let's do a quick revision about the pancreas function:

Thus, the answers:




Pancreas function is to produce digestive enzymes such as LAT (lipase, amylase, & trypsin). (1m)
Since he has degenerative pancreatic disease, the production of these enzymes will be low. (1m)
Pancreas function is also to produce sugar-regulating enzymes (insulin & glucagon). (1m)
Since he has degenerative pancreatic disease, the production of these hormones will also be low (1m).


The patient should take enzyme pills together with his/her meal (1m)
So, the patient can compensate his/her low production of enzymes. (1m)
The patient also should take insulin injection after a heavy meal. (1m)
So the insulin travels in bloodstream to the liver & reduce the blood glucose level (1m). 


FORECAST 2014 SERIES#1 - Homeostasis Importance

Students have been asking about my notes they can purchase. Unfortunately, it will be available starting next year.

Still, good news for you taking SPM this year. I present you some of my free snippets of my module, which I shall deliver regularly until the Biology exam. Here is one of them. Enjoy! (CLICK TO ENLARGE)


Thursday, 30 October 2014

Soalan KBAT/HOTS- Golgi Apparatus

Let's study about this guy:

At this time you already know its function:

SPM question would ask you the cells containing much GA, so according to the answer above, we can deduce the examples:

hormone = insulin
enzyme = pepsin
glycoprotein = mucus

hence, the answer:

Just left few days guys. Go for it!


Tuesday, 28 October 2014

Less than a Week - GANBATTE ALL!

Excuse me for not updating my blog this whole month. Been traveling around for seminars all over the country! Here are some of the photos at the SS4 Kajang - simply the best crowd of them all. Enjoy!

All hail the Heery!

Handouts in the air..!

Future lawyers, engineers, doctors...

Best smiles of SS4

I have no idea what happened here!

Delight of the Day - Doraemon notes!

Doraemon notes part 2 - taken by Ziqing Law, tq!

EPILOGUE - The Klan of Kajang ready to face the Big Day.

It has been such fun teaching you guys, ganbatte all!


Wednesday, 1 October 2014

Teknik Menjawab Soalan using Table Form (REVISITED & UPDATED FOR SPM 2017) - Mitosis vs Meiosis

Paper 1 is easy. Paper 3 is highly technical and can be answered with specific techniques. Paper 2 especially the Section B possess quite a challenge. Plus, it carries the most marks. Hence, I receive the most inquiries about the so-called essay questions using the table. Here, I share with you the tips regarding this most dreaded question in Biology SPM...

PART 1: It is NOT strictly essay question
Most of us think that we need to write like the essays in BM & BI. It is not. It is called OPEN RESPONSE ITEMS. Not just essays, you also can construct your answers with sequence diagrams, tables, graphs, or illustrations. Just remember you can do more than just essays. If you feel comfortable with essay, then stick to the essay with paragraphs. If you are an analytical person, then go for tables. If you are an artistic guy, then go for illustrations (must have labellings). The point of having open response items is adjust to STUDENTS' DIFFERENT LEARNING STYLE. Your teachers should inform you about this during your Form 4 years. My favorite is the table form. Let's go for the table today...

Part 2: Tackling the 'Essay' Using Table Form
The key is to describe your point accurately. Write your answer in simple sentence. Example of question & schema:

Q: Compare the similarities and differences between mitosis and meiosis (6 marks):


5 years ago, this answer schema is considered incorrect because of being too simple. Recently, simple answer schema is accepted so students can easily score an A for the paper. Hooray!


Tending the Lawn - Sekolah Sri Garden

Here are the quirky photos of how the Gardenians are having fun with Biology...

PROLOGUE: Best smiles of the day!

The staring contest!

The Glorious Garden Girls

The elite 17ners

Come and join us!

The diligent and happening students 

The Gardenians hard at work...

It was really awesome to teach you guys. Yup, we'll meet again later for Physics SPM. See ya tomorrow, fellas.


EPILOGUE: Where am I?