Singapore’s gig economy: Can you really make a good living?
In this pandemic, people working in gig economy has come under the spotlight as they have been one of those most greatly affected by this economic downturn.
Yet, in April 2020, Deliveroo announced that its top-earning rider raked in S$7,095 in March which draws us to discuss what exactly is the earning potential of the job as a food rider?
According to TODAY, riders shared that this figure would be near impossible to achieve, especially now that competition has increased as more and more people like taxi Drivers, private hire Drivers and people who suddenly found themselves on no pay leave are all turning to delivery gigs .
In Singapore, those who rely on the gig economy to support their family ranges goes beyond that of food riders, grab drivers, or Amazon delivery Drivers. Tutoring is also part of the gig economy. Some full time tutors have lamented their income has been halved due to the Circuit Breaker, citing that some parents are just not keen on online tuition and would rather wait it out for regulations to cease so that they will resume tuition.
There are a myriad of reasons why people choose or have to work in a so called gig economy, for them, working five to seven days a week for close to eight hours a day isn’t just an added bonus, but an urgent necessity. A livelihood that they badly need.
In our next post, we will share more stories on Gig economy, for tutors who wish to share your side of the story, do emailus. We love to hear from you.
Do you know that the average Singaporean spend over 12 hours on their gadgets daily?
There is no other contraption in the world today that is more indispensable to our lives than the smartphone. While it was previously just a means of voice communication, a (frowned-upon) appendage for the selfie narcissists, the mobile phone is now ever more instrumental to our lives, particularly so in this post-covid world where social distancing and telecommuting has become the norm.
According to a research report by consultancy Ernst & Young, nearly 80 percent of the 1,000 Singaporeans they interviewed on mobile usage shared that they check their phones before and after sleeping. Our dependency on our smartphone has been further accelerated by the current pandemic.
To avoid catching the insidious bug, we contact trace with our phones. When confined at home, we isolate ourselves from others and swipe left on our phones hoping to meet some virtual Mr or Miss Right for companionship. To protect ourselves and prevent germs from spreading, we pay with our phones. The Singapore government is on a fervent digital frenzy to get all their hawkers to jump on the Smart Nation bandwagon, extending a Hawker’s Productivity Grant capped at $5000 over three years just so that Hawkers can all be ready to accept digital payments in time for the fourth industrial revolution. According to CNBC, it is expected that nearly three quarters of the world will use just their smartphones by 2025.
Of course, with the increasing popularity of mobile phones among people comes the sharply contested debate as to whether or not we can live without our phones. Are we becoming slaves to our devices? While there is a valid case to be argued that cell phones are evidently addictive and can lead to possible anti-social behaviours and even social disorientation. Some pundits have even coined the phrase “Nomophobia” an abbreviation for “no-mobile-phone phobia” to describe a condition where people have an extreme dependency on their phones and develop anxiety when they cannot use their phones.
Even our last line of defence, our seniors have fallen prey to the cell phone. The silver generation previously heralded as the naysayers of mobile phones and social media have become new converts of the technology. Under the circuit breaker, some seniors have been embracing technology that was previously unfamiliar to them and they are bonding with their loved ones through their phones. According to IMDA, 76 percent of seniors in Singapore in 2019, a significant leap from just 18 percent in 2013.
Will we ever be freed from the clutches of that alluring glass body with OLED display and facial recognition? Wait, let me Google it on my phone.
This essay is written by Young Writers of The Learning Space. For more O’levels and A’levels model essays, sign up for our membership and you will receive a special Welcome Package with compliments.
English O’levels Oral Examination is the first paper that O’levels candidates will encounter (ironically, it is actually known as Paper 4) in their journey towards conquering the O’levels.
Oral Communication takes up 30 marks and last for a mere 20 minutes (including 10 minutes of preparation time). This year is the first year where the format has changed to a video-based stimulus as opposed to a picture-based stimulus.
Candidates will first read aloud a short text presented on a computer screen. After which, candidate will move on to the spoken interaction section where he or she will answer three questions which are thematically linked to the the earlier passage. The entire oral examination for all O’levels candidate takes place across 10 Days. The theme for each day will be rotated, so Day One could be Heritage/ Culture related question, while Day Two could be Technology.
Part One: Reading Out loud
The text may be a short narrative, news report, speech, or an announcement, or a mixture of types and forms. Candidates are assessed on their ability to accurately pronounce and clearly articulate the words in the text, and read fluently and expressively, showing an awareness of purpose, audience and context.
How do you do very well for Oral?
It is imperative to note that when candidates are reading the passage, they must read it engagingly. A speech should sound like a speech, it should stir some emotions and not be just a monotonous regurgitation of verbatim.
2020 Schedule for English Paper Subject Code 1128
12 August 2020 to 26 August 2020 (Exams will be conducted in shifts)
Get in touch with our strong team of ex MOE Teachers and let them work with you towards success. Our tutors are available just a few clicks away, you can simply send us a request and we can link you up for a virtual online tuition session in a heartbeat.
Raising a child is no easy feat. Parents play a pivotal role in shaping a conducive environment and ensuring they are exposed to valuable experiences – those that induce worthy values and virtues.
These are some things that we can do to give your children the best, all of which they would be much grateful for when they recall their childhood in years to come.
1. Let children play
According to The Tibetan Art of Parenting: From Before Conception Through Early Childhood (2008), by Anne Maiden Brown, PhD who is also psychotherapist and social psychologist , a child has a natural phase of simplicity of mind before it is developmentally ready to interrelate experiences, senses, emotions and thoughts with its situation and past experiences. As we progress into the modern era of technology, it is a sad reality that many children never fully get to enjoy the innocence of childhood – looking forward to physical play time and immersing in care-free imagination like the olden days.
So let your children enjoy their physical activities with you. Don’t neglect the imitation, memorization, touch and movement. These are the memories that your children will look back to fondly which will support them when they grow older.
2. Nurturing the environment
The environment for learning needs to be clean and nurturing. Mistakes need to be corrected without judgement. Children are vulnerable to impressions and need to be protected and healed when they experience fearful or intruding images.
Focus on the core values. Compassion, honesty and sharing are valued qualities in children and can be instilled in young children through their natural imitations of adults through discipline as needed and through recognition and celebration of prized behaviours.
3. Exploring the world through stories
Studies have shown that reading is an important activity for your children to engage in throughout their childhood. Not only does it stimulate the development of skills such as speech and writing, it also encourages cognitive thinking and creativity.
If they are still young, read together with them and take the opportunity to teach them new words as you go along. Most often than not, children books also encompass good values that can teach your children right from wrong, so this doubles up as an opportunity to foster ethics for their personal development.
Listening to audiobooks can help bridge the gap between decoding words and assigning meaning. Receiving information both visually and audibly reinforces word recognition, improves fluency, builds vocabulary and supports the development of comprehension skills.
4. Allow them to pursue their passion
As parents, we want our kids to have the best in their lives and have the capacity to pursue their dreams. However, more often than not, many youths and adults hold back on their dreams.
Encourage them from the get-go. As your children ponder upon their options, the best advice is: Risk everything. Plans B, C, D, and E will always be there. Grab Plan A.
Above all, the truly irreplaceable gift you can ever give your child is unconditional love. Offer your presence – always encourage, always comfort.
Share your thoughts on how efficient these parenting rules may be on your opinion. Leave a comment with anything you believe it’s worth adding.
How to write descriptive essay | On June 2 2020, Singapore will mark the end of the Covid-19 circuit breaker. During this period of semi-lockdown, many Singaporeans witnessed a series of rainbow sightings. Eleanor Sim, a Secondary Four student taking her national exam this year, has this to share after attending our e-learning “O’levels Paper 1: The Essay Writing Workshop”
Rainbows are fascinating.
Rainbows are such a rare sighting, especially in our densely packed metropolis overcrowded with nondescript HDB flats and characterless skyscrapers. With this circuit breaker upon us, we are unwittingly ‘incarcerated’ within the confines of our apartments. Our spirits are down. The ever escalating numbers of Covid-19 cases and the growing number of clusters keep us on tenterhooks.
Being indoors most of the time, cabin fever is creeping upon me. I miss the outdoors too much. I miss the smell of the morning dew. I miss the fragrance of freshly cut grass. This evening, I promised myself to take a short run around the blocks. Just as I was about to head home after the run, I noticed a rainbow swirl appearing across the sky.
The sighting of a rainbow has long been believed to be a promise of good things to come. When I saw a rainbow, that brilliant arch casted upon the dusky sky, I felt such bliss.
The awe-inspiring rainbow stood out distinctively against the hues of pink and orange cotton-candy clouds. Such simple joy. It is so remarkable that such simple pleasures like this can bring us spurs of euphoria in such a gloomy semi-lockdown period where everything seems to have come to a standstill. The rainbow seems to remind us that there is hope. It is a gleaning hope of a brighter time once the pandemic storm passes.
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At approximately 3.30pm today, 26 May 2020, Mr Lim awaits with bated breath as he sits gingerly in front of his screens eagerly anticipating the contents of the $33b Fortitude budget.
Mr Patrick Low, a motor cars dealer and a single parent of five children lamented that people like him has been largely overlooked in this looming crisis. He feels that he had felt the full brunt of the circuit-breaker. Since end March, he has not managed to sell any of his cars. His showroom is currently closed and he has a team of over six full time employees with salaries waiting to be paid.
Living in a private property and self employed, he is not eligible and has not received much financial aid despite having five children and two elderly parents to look after. Many thoughts raced through Mr Low’s mind as he watched Minister’s Heng’s speech. What will he say this time? My business has come to a standstill due to the Covid situation. It has been close to three months that I have no business yet I have to pay rent to the landlords, salaries of my staff, the expenses of my children and family all weighing on me. His children, youngest being 10 and oldest 18, their tuition fees alone amount to almost $4K each month.
Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat released a fourth Budget today, announcing an SGUnited Jobs and Skills Package that will create close to 100,000 opportunities, which includes the jobs, as well as 25,000 traineeships and 30,000 skills training placements. In addition to this, he announced that eligible tenants will continue to receive further rental waivers and rebates from landlords. Households with at least one Singaporean will receive $100 subsidy on utility bills.
Mr Low shows some relief after hearing today’s Budget. The rent for his car showroom and garage is one of his greatest concerns and today he is grateful to hear that the government is offering more aid. He still dreads to think about the future but shares that at least for the next few months, some weight is lifted off his shoulder. When asked if he will cut down on his children’s tuition fees so as to reduce his financial burden, Mr Low took a deep breath, knitted his brows together and said, “I will do my best not to. Their academic results are so important. Education is one thing that I prioritise the most. My eldest and my third child are taking their A’levels and O’levels respectively, it is their critical year. I will dig deep into my savings for their future.
At The Learning Space, we know this crisis is difficult for everyone. A team of our Teachers and Tutors have banded together to provide quality online tuition at a discounted rate for students in graduating years. To find out more about this, do email us.
Changes to PSLE and ‘O’ Levels curricula tested this year 2020
The Ministry of Education (MOE) announced on 22 Apr that changes will be made to the curricula tested this year, taking in account the impact of the extended circuit breaker measures on curriculum time and to allay student’s anxiety. The ministry indicated that the common last topics – a set of topics taught by schools toward the end of the academic year, will be removed from the national examinations this year.
For skill-based subjects such as English and mother tongue languages, MOE state that it will not be “meaningful and practical” to identify common last topics. In such instances, the Singapore Examinations and Assessment Board (SEAB) will ensure that disruption to curriculum time will be taken into consideration during marking and grading to ensure fair assessment of all students.
Keen to find out more on the updated curricula? Visit us to find out how we can help your child prepare for their upcoming examinations.
At a glance:
Common Last Topics not examined in 2020*
Speed, Volume, Pie Charts, Solid Figures and Nets (PSLE Math)
Interactions within the Environment (PSLE Science)
Proofs in plane geometry (O Level A. Math)
Vectors in two dimensions (O Level E. Math)
Magnetism and Electromagnetism (O Level Science Physics)
Organic Chemistry (O Level Chemistry)
Organisms and their Environment (O Level Biology)
* Please take note that this list is not exhaustive. For a complete list of subjects affected, kindly visit https://www.seab.gov.sg/ for more information