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High School 101 (Part Two)

Turkish Language and Literature - Demet Uluğ

What is literature and how is it different from Turkish?


The name of our lesson is Turkish Language and Literature. It is a course that comes in 9 units in the ninth grade and provides information on all eras and genres of Turkish Literature, as well as lessons in Turkish subjects, which is a continuation of secondary school, are taught at the same time. This has a heavy curriculum with 9 Turkish literature and 9 Turkish language subjects under 9 units. The risk of our course is that when a student, who started studying Turkish with LGS in the ninth grade, comes here, they see that the Turkish lesson has not ended, but Turkish Language and Literature is the beginning of a new page. It also puts a strain on the student psychologically. Some topics related to literature emerge that haven't been in the students’ life before and sometimes can challenge them. Of course, if the student has a reading culture and is already a reader, they can cope with the lesson more easily. But if they are someone who doesn’t read and isn’t interested in the lesson, then they may have difficulties with the lesson.


What to do in the ninth grade?


Almost 30 out of 40 Turkish questions in TYT consist of paragraphs. It is very important for us to understand the paragraph. If they solve paragraph questions every day, even 2-3 questions a day, to lay the foundation well, they will enter TYT with a great foundation and won’t miss any paragraph questions. In addition, there are subjects that are the basis of the Turkish Language in the ninth grade curriculum. They must make sure that they can answer all the test questions that may come across from these subjects and make up for their upcomings. Because it’s good to learn on time; if they learn on time, they’ll have time to ask their questions, but the students who try to learn during the repetition of the subject in the eleventh and twelfth grades may falter.


I think that the most important concept for Turkish Language and Literature in the ninth grade is time management. Besides, we should study literature as follows: There are many sentences in literature. We must learn to summarize sentences. What is meant in the sentence and what are the important points in the paragraph. We must learn to summarize the sentence we receive.


Projects in Turkish?


There are of course TUBITAK projects, but not all of them are in the field of Turkish Language and Literature. Our teachers had TÜBİTAK projects in fields such as values education, sociology and psychology. Our coterie has a wide area in terms of TUBITAK projects. The reason for this is that our teachers like to do projects. Just being in contact with teachers is enough to produce a project. Someone who wants to do a project on these subjects can find their teacher and simply say, "I have an idea." or “I don't have an idea, but can we work on generating one?”. It depends on the person's interest, but I think if a student has an interest, wants to learn the stages of scientific studies, and is interested in research, they should definitely start a project in the ninth grade.


How do you teach your lessons?


I try to teach my lesson from whole to part as much as possible. In my first lesson, I try to explain and integrate what we have. For example, I can go and explain the subject of adjectives, and I will anyway, but I prefer to start with why I am explaining the subject of adjectives. “What will I teach you this year and why will I teach you?” When the student establishes that connection, when they establish integrity, they have the chance to evaluate the subjects by making more sense of them and putting them in their place.


Difficulties of grades?


For students, ninth grade is difficult because it is the first semester, the first year, because it is difficult to accept that the Turkish Language and Literature are together and that there are 18 subjects out of nine units each, and they need to get used to it in such a short time. However, this difficulty is not due to the difficulty of the subject but to the student's weak psychological readiness. But as of the first semester, the students feel safer. But of course, besides ninth grade, if the student accumulates subjects, twelfth grade will be a nightmare for the student.



English - Meltem Eyüboğlu

Goal of your lesson?


The aim of the English lesson in high school is to acquire the language with all its skills; To teach all listening, reading, speaking and writing skills in a spiral structure. If their education is purely mechanical, people grow up knowing the vocabulary and the grammar but can’t speak or write. That's why we try to give the education to the student in a spiral structure of skills, and to give it all as a pattern by experiencing it all and using them in projects. Our books are written for this purpose. By doing this program, our students can take international exams such as IELTS and TOEFL iBT without any problems and without taking extra courses.


TOEFL iBT/IELTS?


Since TOEFL iBT and IELTS exams are valid for two years. It’s better to take them in the second semester of the 11th grade or in the summer, if they are not needed beforehand and if they’re not going to use them somewhere before. Because we want them to be valid for university applications. If you need to ue them somewhere before, you can easily find instructions on the internet, they are applied constantly. There’s also a lot of online material. You are already automatically prepared here. However, apart from those materials, we, as the English department, also help you with any deficinsies you may have and answer your questions. You can easily take these exams. You can decide which one is more suitable for you by doing a mock exam.


Prep Class?


There is already a very intensive English program in the prep class and it’s a really good program. The methods and books used are very good and correct. The treatment of these in the course is multifaceted. Therefore, listening to the entire lecture and doing the assignments and projects given there brings the student to a very good place. Also, if you are asking what you can do personally, you can find online materials on the internet, listen to podcasts, TEDTalks, watch TV series and movies - turning the captions off after a certain time -, listen to songs while singing them simultaneously, play computer games, and make friends from abroad. But most importantly, you should read a lot of books. We already provide this in the program, but apart from that, you need to read extra books.


Global Education Center


We carry out the counseling together with Özlem teacher. Özlem teacher looks after the Anatolian High School and I look after the Science and Technology High School. Our students can come to us by making an appointment. Currently, our twelfth graders are a priority because we shouldn’t delay their college admissions. Then we make appointments for eleventh grades, then tenth grades, then ninth grades, and finally the prep class. We provide consultancy to students who want to chart a path and decide to study abroad. They can and should come to us, but they should come first to make an appointment.


Today the 50th


We have reopened our applications with a one-week extension to welcome and embrace our new prep and ninth grade friends coming to our school in 2024. Our teachers explained it in classes, and our school sent e-mails. Those who knew began to write their application essays. We had to explain a little to those who don't know. We are currently turning to an e-twinning project, we found our sponsors, something very valuable. With very valuable writers, editors. It’s very valuable for the students who want to study abroad, very valuable that a project owner is also a student and that it’s a student-led project. It's going very well, everyone is writing very nice and enjoyable. Now I proudly watch from a distance, just checking. Long-term writing in a completely student-led international project is a great contribution to all our writers’ CV’s.



English - Patrice Hill

How do you teach your lessons?


Right now, at Bahçeşehir, I'm teaching mostly communication skills, speaking skills. So, I would say that, for the ninth graders, for the most part, have enough fluency that you can just build on those skills. For the prep students, it’s a bit different because in the prep classes they’re not separated by their English abilities; they’re a mixture of levels. it’s sometimes more challenging, some students are new to English, some students are quite fluent. Thus, I would say that it requires somewhat of an individual technique. Of course, we are required to use our school’s course books and those activities can be really good for listening and speaking, and vocabulary. but there are always some students who are more fluent and they need to be given more challenging tasks because they need to be challenged more, and there are some students who are getting the basics of language, need to be given supplemental activities as well. but number one rule is they have to speak in English all the time, regardless of how limited their English is. Because otherwise it won't improve.


How to study English?


I always say reading; reading is the important thing because -we’re not all visual learners but- when you see the language I think that, that has more of an impact on your ability to retain the language. And also if you’re reading books that challenge you a bit in terms of vocabulary and sentence structure then you're building up your English. Watching and listening to TV series, films is also a good way to improve and you should try to speak English as much as you can but I always say that reading is the number one way to “study”.


TOEFL iBT/IELTS?


I've had lots of experiences with IELTS but I'm really new to TOEFL iBT. So I can't really say which one to take, I can't really make an educated comparison. Some people say TOEFL is more difficult, some people say IELTS is more difficult. So far whatI know, they look quite similar, they’re both testing reading, writing and speaking skills; especially your language skills in academic topics. Again, I can't give an absolute definitive answer.


When to start studying for TOEFL iBT/IELTS?


In terms of actually studying for a test, I think the most important thing is to be working on improving your language skills. So for example, for reading passages, you shouldn't be reading just fiction, most of the articles in TOEFL and IELTS are non-fiction, they’re about topics like art, science and technology. So students need to be reading all these different types of articles. They should also practice writing but it doesn’t necessarily have to simulate the tests, they can write about what they want to but they should be writing and writing. In terms of the actual preparation for the test, that can wait; we are starting to get students prepared at tenth grade here. I think it's nice that we’re preparing students for TOEFL at tenth grade but they have to have the skills to be successful at TOEFL or IELTS.


Want something to add?


In terms of language acquisition, it’s really about students’ motivation. If a student isn’t interested, then no matter how smart the student is or how hard the teacher works because the students that make the best at the tests are seem to be the students that are reading, practicing their skills all the time, maybe they have an internet friend who speaks to them in English or maybe they’re just watching movies. I would say that just learning in the classroom isn’t enough if you want to be perfect at English.



German - Duygu Bora

How do you teach your lessons?


I try to teach German while comparing it to English in my lessons. Because a foreign language is better constructed on top of another foreign language. So we work comparatively with English. But doesn't it happen in Turkish? Of course it does. German and Turkish have much more in common than students realize, and I explain it as much as I can. I try to teach actively, using mostly books and the screen, but most importantly, I always try to get the students talking. Because there are many students at the point of "I understand but I can't speak", so I try to focus more on speaking.


How to study German?


First of all, it requires a very special effort, it’s not like English. Students have a deep English background, but not much German background. Therefore, we need to put more effort into creating a language from scratch. The most basic of this starts from “der, die, das”. Once you solve this, the rest is very easy. Therefore, it is essential to have a table at the beginning of each topic. There needs to be a “der, die, das” table, English equivalents next to the words, and sample sentences. The student should study in this way, by listening and reading a lot, and by listening to the lesson very well. But German is like a chain; if there is a part of a lesson that they don’t understand, the chain breaks and they become unable to follow the subject. Therefore, they should definitely listen to the lessons carefully and ask where they don’t understand. Besides, we have small story books, they can lend them from us. That way they can learn a lot of words. The more words a student knows, the more likely they are to speak.


TELC?


As the German coterie, we run the TELC club. We work completely exam-oriented, preparing students for telc's A2 and B1 exams. But instead of bringing students to this level, we want students who are already A2 and B1 to attend. We have a very serious and strict preparation in the club, but students who wish can also study for the exam outside out of the club with our support.


Topic to focus on?


Articles and their conjugations cause trouble for students. Naturally, the student who tries to memorize for the exam the day before the exam falters. This is the subject that students should listen to most carefully because every noun has an article, but it doesn't end there. Then the conjugations of articles come. But of course it’s not a thing that’s unsolveable.


Want something to add?


German is one of the languages to learn after English. And no lie, it's a really difficult one, not easy, but it's a language that also has its own logic. It has its strict mathematics. Someone who can think analytically can solve this language very easily if they put their mind to it. It sounds interesting, people who like to solve puzzles learn German very well. It's a language you may speak a little late, but be patient. It is a difficult but also an enjoyable language.



Religion - Kemal Özcan

How should a student spend their ninth grade?


First of all, students should realize that they are entering a new system, that secondary school is over and high school is starting. They can read the religious textbook at the beginning of the year and have an idea about the things they’ll learn throughout the year. Because the student is now in the ninth grade and will lay the foundations of high school and from there they‘ll move on to university. If the student wants a good foundation of religion lessons, they should listen to the lesson in the ninth grade.


How to study religion?


For me, it would be enough to read the textbook and if you want more in-depth information, get a few additional resource recommendations from me on the subject. In our course, prayers, surahs, etc. aren’t taught in the ninth grade, so there’s no memorization. It will be enough to listen to the lecture and follow the book.


The most important topics in YKS in terms of religion?


The subject that requires the most attention in religion class is the subject of Life of Muhammad and the subject of Faith. Faith topic is from ninth grade. Ninth grade is easy but it includes topics which are very important for TYT. But, Muhammad's Life and Attributes seem to be more prominent in terms of TYT.


Is there anything you want to add?


As I said at the beginning of the interview, they will build their entire high school life in the ninth grade, they should know its importance and read lots of books.


"Social Life in High School" - Fuat Can Çalışkan


What are the differences between high school and secondary school?


-High school gives students more freedom and responsibility. They need to realize their own needs and follow their responsibilities. It is a period when the support of their parents decreases.

-It is a period when career choices are expected to be made. Vocational choices in middle school usually change and become clearer in high school.

- Lessons are more complex and more learning effort is expected from students. While in middle school, more results can be achieved by listening in class and with little effort, in high school, it is more difficult to get the same results with little effort. More effort is required.

-The social environment can often be larger and more diverse in high school. This gives you the opportunity to get to know more people and find more people suitable for you.


Should someone who moves to high school change the way they study, and if so, how?


-In high school, you may encounter an environment that requires more hard work and more self-discipline. Students may need to develop new ways and methods for planning and organization.

-You can start by creating a daily study schedule and developing the habit of taking notes. If you get distracted in class, taking notes will make your job easier. The daily study schedule prevents homework and subjects from piling up. It helps you remember faster when exams and AGIS/Deneme come.

-Completing each year without missing subjects makes the YKS process easier for a high school student. While preparing for YKS, students spend less time remembering the subject instead of learning it from scratch. Accumulating issues may also create stress and anxiety on the student during the preparation period for YKS.

-Review your lessons regularly and solve questions and complete your homework to reinforce the topics.


How can we get the most out of our school?


-Active participation, communication with your teachers and detailed focus on the course material are the keys to getting the most out of the courses.

-Don't be afraid to ask for help and feedback from your teachers.

-You can gain new skills and experiences by participating in extra extracurricular activities.

-Doing vocational observation makes it easier for you to choose the profession that suits you.

-Follow the announcements closely and evaluate the additional studies we share with you.


How can the prep class be spent in the best way?


- The prep class is a great opportunity to strengthen basic skills. You can use this time to improve your weaknesses, especially in foreign languages.

- You can request extra materials and learning resources from your teachers.

- You can use your extracurricular time to make professional observations. The sooner you decide which profession you want, the better off you will be.

- You can enrich this year, when academic intensity is more appropriate, by learning an additional language. Instead of an additional language, you can participate in additional studies, internships or courses based on your own professional choice.

- You can take part in social responsibility activities. You can follow not only the work carried out at school but also the work outside the school.

- You can enrich your CV starting from this year, especially if you are considering a university abroad.

One thing we should definitely do in high school?


-What you definitely need to do: Study regularly, submit your homework on time, and stay in touch with your teachers. Don't neglect your lessons. High school passes and ends faster than it seems. Definitely engage in an extracurricular activity. Be part of a side study. Find new and different pursuits, discover your own interests.

- What you should definitely not do: You will naturally waste your time on unnecessary activities. Know your limits. Don't get too distracted. Don't wait for university to discover your own interests, professional curiosities, expectations from life and determine your career. Don't think of high school as a long and never ending period.


What is the most common social problem and how do we protect ourselves from it?


-Social pressure, friendship problems and adaptation difficulties are frequently encountered problems.

-Know yourself and stay true to your personal values. Don't let others lead or influence you.

-Stay away from negative friendships and make friends who are healthy, supportive and good for you.

-It is important to be able to express your problems clearly to adults or school counselors. Get help when you need it.













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