Christabel Teo

Christabel Teo

Dear Mr Tye

English as a prerequisite subject for every course in university and as a compulsory top 4 subject in VCE was perhaps the subject I’d always feared the most.

I first began to attend Tye & English when I was in grade 5 and over the years, joined the many different courses that were on offer.  When I chose to do English Language in Year 11, I immediately enrolled  for English Language classes and was pleased to find out Mr Tye himself would be taking the class.

Others before me who had attended Tye & English assured me that the resources provided were the best part of class. I found that to be extremely true. Every week Mr Tye would hand out text after text, article after article, and essay after essay, all as references for us to use. This was perhaps the most advantageous and useful.

Admittedly at the start, I was lazy and did not make full use of all the resources. Tye & English classes appeared to be more difficult and slow paced than day school. As a student who excelled in all subjects, it was a disappointment to see that my work was now suddenly less than satisfactory. Year 12 came about much the same way until one day I decided to put in my all to listen. And what I found was that when I put my mind to focus and concentrate, everything clicked. Classes weren’t more difficult, we were actually digging deeper and exploring further, gaining a better understanding of the subject. Suddenly I couldn’t wait to sit in front of Mr Tye every Saturday afternoon and join in the discussions. Not only were light bulbs going off in my head non-stop, I could see how everything was fitting together, that my knowledge wasn’t merely memorised on the surface but reaching deeper and deeper like tree roots. When I let myself become a sponge, I was soaking up much more than I could hold. I would sometimes ponder for days over all the interesting things we cover from just an hour and a half class.

I had always been scared of writing essays, the mere thought of it used to send me running in the opposite direction. However, I was filled with more confidence to attempt the essay topics given by Mr Tye with my new skills. I slowly completed all analysis tasks that were handed out and gave them in for correction too. I always felt apologetic to Mr Tye for having to correct my homework, but without fail, Mr Tye corrected every single piece I submitted. In the beginning it took me three hours to complete just one essay, but as I gradually forced myself to sit down to write one every week, then two every week, I did notice myself becoming faster and less red pen marking coming back with every essay. The satisfaction that comes with finally writing an essay under 50 minutes with a big “well done!” is indescribable, especially when someone as distinguished as Mr Tye was the one who had corrected it. I could actually feel my confidence build, real confidence, from knowing that I had truly improved and truly learned.

I had expected a study score of less than 40. Mr Tye predicted a score between 40 and 45. We were both wrong. I obtained a score of 46 for English Language which I can declare contributed largely to my ATAR scores of 99.10. Never in my dreams could I have ever predicted such a score for myself. Tye & English had humbled my opinion of my standard then built me up and increase my true potential to more than I could imagine.

Thank you Mr Tye for taking the time to correct every single analysis task. Thank you for taking the time to correct every single essay I handed in without fail. Thank you for all the extra time you spent and gave in staying back after classes to offer help.

I thank God my parents dragged me to Tye & English for that first lesson nearly eight years ago.

Christabel Teo, Rowville SC, 2011