Learning Minds Special

A focused approach to learning General Paper

A focused approach to learning General Paper
Mr Irwin See believes that General Paper (GP) holds the magic to open minds, touch hearts, and engage 17- and 18-year-olds to think deeper about issues such as identity, meaning and purpose of life. Photo: Irwin's Study
At Irwin’s Study, students get tuition and mentorship from an Oxford University graduate
Published: 3:47 PM, April 25, 2017
Updated: 10:38 AM, April 26, 2017

Mr Irwin See, 37, has been giving General Paper (GP) tuition for the past eight years. His students say that his passion and optimism are infectious, as is the way he dishes out nifty examination tips with a big smile.

His track record helps set him apart as a positive role model and a different kind of tuition teacher. He took up the teaching track after obtaining a master’s degree with distinction from Oxford University and a first class honours degree from the London School of Economics on a Public Service Commission Overseas Scholarship.

His teaching methods include using visual elements such as infographics and mind maps, and help give his students an edge in the subject.

ENGAGING YOUNG MINDS

Mr See started the private-tuition centre — Irwin’s Study — in 2009 after teaching GP and History at a junior college as a Ministry of Education teacher for a few years.

“I decided to focus on teaching GP because I believe that when taught well, it is a subject that holds the magic to open minds, touch hearts, and engage 17- and 18-year-olds to think deeper about issues such as identity, meaning and purpose of life,” he added.

Despite running Irwin’s Study at two locations (Tampines and Bukit Timah), Mr See still teaches every GP lesson personally.

Over the years, his students’ results and positive attitudes have been great sources of motivation for him. More than 80 per cent of them have managed to score an A or B in their A-Level GP exams, he said.

“Most importantly, students tell me they look forward to coming for my GP lesson every week and that they never leave my lesson without having learnt something new about the world and about themselves,” he said. “That is quite amazing because I never thought that students would look forward to attending tuition classes!”

One of his students, Ms Janice Chan, said: “Mr See teaches us to see issues from multiple perspectives, and his passion for teaching is evident in the way he teaches beyond the needs of the examinations.”

BEYOND BOOKS

And the advice Mr See gives isn’t confined only to academic work either.

Said Mr See: “Some students also stay back after class to chat with me or ask me for my thoughts and advice on various issues. I realise that these are precious moments when I can share with students my life experiences, and impart bits and pieces of wisdom as a mentor to these young lives.”