Improve Composition Writing with Big Ideaz Education {Review}

Writing well is not an innate skill for the majority of us. It is something that needs to be developed over time, through practice, and with the appropriate guidance; it’s not just something that the average person can naturally pick up from reading more.

Earlier in Term 2, Hui Ing approached me to ask if I’d be interested to review a writing course. She is a former Primary School teacher and the founder of Big Ideaz Education.

Big Ideaz Education is a provider of English composition writing courses and creative writing workshops for primary school children in Singapore. There are live weekly writing classes for P3-P6 as well as online courses (P1-6).

For the online courses, the Writing Academy is for P4-6 (PSLE Format compo) and the Junior Writing Academy is for P1-3 (4-Picture Compo).

I chose to review an online course for my boy who is currently in Primary 2. I felt that he would benefit from writing regularly from a young age, so I enrolled him for the Junior Writing Academy.

What to Expect from the Junior Writing Academy

Every month, two video lessons are released and there are assignments to be completed. The videos are not more than 10 minutes long, and are bite-sized and easy to understand, even for the young ones. I sat through a few videos with my boy and I did not interfere during the lessons. He was able to understand the lessons and complete the assignments I printed out from the website.

I would then scan the completed assignments then upload them on the portal. The assignments would be marked by Hui Ing, a former MOE teacher, and returned within about 5 working days with comments for further improvement. If needed, a second draft would be required for submission; otherwise, just go on to the next lesson, if available, for the month.

I like that the lessons are progressive and always build on something that they have just learnt or have learnt earlier in the course. Even if they have forgotten, you can always revisit the videos to revise, as long as you are still enrolled in the course.

Sample of a marked assignment (Draft 1):

I think it’s great that there are only two lessons per month for the Junior Writing Academy. It’s not overwhelming and yet provides the younger ones with the opportunity to have some practice writing each month. To be honest, if there was a lesson per week, we may not be able to cope with it as we are not that disciplined to work on it weekly.

The thing about online courses is that you need to have self-discipline. Sending your child to a brick and mortar enrichment class means you don’t need to print out assignments or send assignments over, and run through the marked assignments. Thus, if you know that you are not very self-disciplined, you might want to opt for the weekly classes conducted. However, currently weekly classes are only for P3-6, in Tampines, so you can consider it if your child is older and if the location is convenient for you.

I’m actually quite glad that I’ve started him early on this online course so that when he goes to P3 next year, he would have a better grasp of how to write better compositions. As he is young and there are no exams for P2, I take this online course as an opportunity to stretch him to develop his writing skills in a stress-free environment. I am also in no rush to improve on any particular component of composition writing at this point as he is still new to it, so I’m not bothered by only being able to access the stipulated two lessons per month. If you have a child in the lower primary, I would recommend this online course for the reasons I have stated earlier.

There are also some free resources on their website, so be sure to check them out when you are browsing Big Ideaz Education.

Disclosure: I was given a complimentary subscription to the Junior Writing Academy. No monetary compensation was provided. Opinions are 100% mine.

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More than just chicken essence | Tian Yuan Xiang

This perk-me-up wonder is not my dose of coffee. I’ve been relying on it since the start of Term 2. 

I started first week this term solo parenting because hubby had to attend a conference overseas for four days. That meant that I had to handle the kids, the cooking and the chores on top of work myself. I woke up feeling exhausted every day and while my eyes were still blurry, I cut open one satchet of this chicken essence and heated it up in the microwave for a minute. 

The Tian Yuan Xiang Chicken Essence is more than just aromatic chicken essence. Other ingredients which have been added to this packet of goodness are red dates, wolfberries, huang qi 黄芪and black dates. These Chinese herbs are good for strengthening the body, especially when we are fatigued while black dates help with bowel movement as well. 

Room temperature edition Tian Yuan Xiang Chicken Essence 

The chickens used to produce the Tian Yuan Xiang double-boiled chicken essence are their own free range chickens where no chemicals or hormones are administered. They also only use 150-day mature chickens to obtain the most nutrition in the chicken essence. Hence the double-boiled chicken essence is rich in high quality protein and essential amino acids. Not a single drop of water is added to the chicken essence, and to make things even better for consumers, the oil is filtered off to reduce the calories! For Muslim friends, you will be glad to know that Tian Yuan Xiang Chicken Essence is Halal certified. This room temperature version of the chicken essence means that you can carry it with you anywhere, even when you go overseas. 

For my kids, Tian Yuan Xiang also sent over their Chicken Essence for Digestion. Just as the other box of chicken essence, this variation contains Chinese herbs. Present in this chicken essence is山药 (Chinese yam), 茯苓 (Poria), 芡实 (Euryales Semen) and莲子 (Lotus seed). These four herbs aid in strengthening and nourishing the stomach and spleen; in particular it helps with promoting a healthy appetite.  

Unlike the room temperature version of the normal chicken essence, this version must be stored in the freezer. 

Just pop it into the microwave for 2 minutes and it’s ready! 

Recently my boy missed an entire week of school because of a bacterial and viral infection. After his illness, I gave him this chicken essence for extra nourishment. Although my girl managed to escape the clutches of the virus at home, I also gave her the chicken essence because the chicken essence can also be consumed by a healthy person. The chicken essence for digestion is suitable for 1yr+ above, and the original chicken essence is suitable for 3yr+ above. 

Quality-wise, Tian Yuan Xiang offers high-quality chicken essence which does more than just help combat fatigue. I like that they have so many variations, tailoring to different needs. For instance, they have chicken essence for ladies trying to conceive, pregnant, lactating and postpartum mums, students, post-surgery care and the elderly. With such a wide range of chicken essence to choose from for nourishment, we are indeed spoilt for choice! 

Customer appreciation sale (30/5 – 16/6) 

1 Box- 5% OFF 

3 Boxes- 9% OFF + $10 Takashimaya Voucher  

6 Boxes- 12% OFF + $20 Takashimaya Voucher  

10 Boxes- 15% OFF + $50 Takashimaya Voucher 

Discount + voucher is up to 18% off!  

Tian Yuan Xiang also provides partial delivery service where they will store the (frozen) chicken essence you have ordered for you and they can deliver upon your request so you need not worry that there’s no space in the freezer! So nice and convenient! 

It’s no doubt the perfect timing to stock the chicken essence for your beloved ones.  

Tian Yuan Xiang is also participating in 2019 Food Fiesta at Takashimaya Food Fiesta (Takashimaya Square B2), so besides purchasing online or in their store at United Square B1, you can also buy their chicken essence at Takashimaya!  

Tian Yuan Xiang Chicken Essence 

101 Thomson Road, #B1-24A United Square, Singapore 307591 (Novena MRT) 
Tel: +65 6200 6789 
Opening Time: 
Sundays to Thursdays and public holiday: 10:30am-09:00pm 
Fridays, Saturdays and eves of public holiday: 10:30am-09:30pm 

Disclosure: I was invited to review Tian Yuan Xiang Chicken Essence. No monetary compensation was received. All opinions are mine. 

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