By Definition Solves Singapore Malay Language Teachers Enrichment Programme Problems!

By Definition Pte Ltd



19 November 2012


We’ve only been serving the Mother Tongue Department (Malay Language) in Singapore Schools for close to two years but we dare say that we have perhaps been able to solve the major issue that most Malay Language Teachers in Singapore Schools often talk about – Low Budget!

Sounds familiar to you?

In the time that we have been in the industry, we have managed to deliver Malay Language Enrichment programmes meeting the specific needs of not just the schools and teachers but most importantly, the students!

Your Mother Tongue Language Enrichment Programmes budget issues can be resolved!

Be it you want something related to Malay Traditional Games or Traditional Malay Cultural Activities or Talks related to the Malay Language, we’ve got it all! (Don’t believe? Got photos on our By Definition FB as evidence lor. Click here!)

So, how do we do it?

We customize every single Malay Language Enrichment Programme to meet your Budget, Student Needs and the Learning Outcomes that Teachers Want for their Students! (We know what’s important to you cause one of our Directors is a certified Teacher/Trainer from Cambridge!)

SO, here’s what we are suggesting – We can work together to plan out an ENTIRE YEAR Malay Language Enrichment Programme for you! No more headaches for the rest of the year on how to allocate your budget then because we will help you resolve that budgeting problem! We can also help you source out for Artefacts or Resource Materials related to the Malay Culture and Heritage as how we have done for National Junior College!

Gamelan Set for National Junior College

Gamelan Set for National Junior College

Batik Set for National Junior College

Batik Set for National Junior College

Here’s what you can be assured of when you take us as your vendor:
1-You will also be supporting the livelihood of our dedicated and well-trained trainers! and
2- Ensure that we can continue to awesomely deliver! and
3- Challenge us to do more than what we are doing at the moment!

So let’s meet up and discuss what we can do for you!

NO OBLIGATIONS to take us if you don’t think we can deliver for you!

Drop us an email to our Arts & Education Director ( or send us a DM Tweet (@ByDefinitionSG) or drop us a PM on our FB (By Definition Facebook) and arrange for an appointment with us!

See! So high tech, can reach us through any method via your Smart Phone!

Hope to see you soon!

Tweet: @ByDefinitionSG
Instagram: @ByDefinition
YouTube Channel: By Definition SG

Traditional vs Modern Society – Islam

There’s a good reason as to why I love my religion, Islam.

Not only does it require its followers to submit (Islam means submission), it also comes with a handbook(Quran) and guidebook(Hadith), instructing and guiding one on the Best Practices EVER by the one who spread the message, Prophet Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him).

One of the interesting things that we seem to discuss in modern day is about the issue of what’s traditional and what’s modern.

Lets take for instance the issue of a man marrying a woman who earns more than him. There’s always the idea that the man must earn more than a woman or he is seen to be less capable. Or perhaps a woman asking a man for his hand in marriage. We often hear women speak about them being traditional and wouldn’t ask a guy out but DID YOU KNOW that:

– Prophet Muhammad’s first wife was actually his EMPLOYER. This meant that she was earning more than him at the time of marriage.
– Prophet Muhammad’s wife was the one who ASKED FOR HIS HAND IN MARRIAGE

Or how about an older woman marrying a younger man?

Prophet Muhammad’s first wife was 15 years older than him! He was 25 and she, 40.

I don’t think this issue is quite modern nor traditional itself because if it is, then Islam has to be considered the most advanced and modern society because this all happened some 1400years ago!

Now of course, everyone has their right to their own opinion but for those who have reservations or issues in dealing with friends or family members who haggle with these issues, then I do suppose you could bring up this story.

After all, I’m confident that we all know that the life of Prophet Muhammad is one that is exemplary and certainly, an example to be made for all Muslims.

‘The Majestic Mask’ – Indonesian Mask Festival

The exhibit entitled, ‘The Majestic Mask’ – Indonesian Mask Festival, provides visitors with an absolute Indonesian experience into the world of masks when participants take on the whole tour and attend all the performances that has been lined up.

'The Majestic Mask' - Indonesian Mask Festival

‘The Majestic Mask’ – Indonesian Mask Festival

Aside from a mini-exhibition of masks from all over Indonesia, visitors will also be treated to a video screening of a 72 year Dalang Topeng living in Indramayu, who on the trials and tribulations that performers involved in Wayang Wong performances have to undergo.

Visitors should also attend the Wayang Wong performance and be enthralled by the magical experience presented on stage in visual theatrics. Three different performance from three different areas (Indramayu, Solo and Bali) on three different days of the event (Friday, Saturday and Sunday).

A Wayang Wong performance from Indramayu area

A Wayang Wong performance from Indramayu area

‘The Majestic Mask’ – Indonesian Mask Festival closes on 21st October 2012.

Showtimes: 2pm, 4pm and 6pm (All different shows. If you miss one, you won’t get to see another one of that day)

Click here to view photos 

In the Royal Palace of Kraton Surakarta Hadiningrat

I’m currently blogging from Yogyakarta, cultural city of Indonesia where I’m here for a week-long business trip. And since my business is all about fun and deeply involves culture and heritage related to the Singapore Malay community, I’m here in the land of my adopted country to learn a bit more about it.

Earlier today, I travelled from Yogyakarta to the city of Solo located about an hour away by train or about an hour and half travel by the inter-city bus, referred to as ‘Travel’. My journey began at 0800hrs, Indonesian time, from Yogyakarta as we took the ‘Travel’ to Solo and an hour and half later, we awoke within the heart of ‘Kraton’ (also spelled as ‘Keraton’), the Royal institution (everything and anything referred to the palace).

In what used to be the Royal Palace where the King and his courtiers lived within the walls of the palace, it is now a city which sees the Royal family live alongside members of the public who have since been given access to purchase assets, which used to belong to the Royal family (having been first assessed on their background).

The last of its’ glorious days of this city was during the reign of Pakubuwana 10 or better known as ‘P.B X’ back in the 1930’s. Thereafter, World War II came and the invasion of the Japanese had caused much changes to how the Royal family then conducted its’ daily life and rituals.

Royal Line

Royal Line

Nevertheless, a walk through the Royal museum will bring you back into time to have a better understanding of how grandiose life used to be within the walls of the palace. Royal artefacts on display helps you to understand that Malays (or rather, Javanese) Royal Military didn’t just go to war with the ‘Keris’ as how we would have usually seen on tv or been told to by our history books.

In fact, the Javanese Royal Military were well equipped with cannons, spears, bow and arrows as well as shields, something which has very much been neglected in the illustration and depiction of the Royalties living within the Malay Archipelago. Not that I can blame anyone other than historians of yesteryears or powers controlling propaganda since most history books only make reference to the Malacca Royal family and the stories which surrounds around Hang Tuah, Hang Jebat and Puteri Gunung Ledang. (Let’s leave this part for a separate entry)

Royal Weaponry

Royal Weaponry

Royal Cannons

Royal Cannons

Royal Bows

Royal Bows

Swords and Sabers

Swords and Sabers

Anyway, I was very lucky to have been there today as it so happens that the Royal dancers were performing a dance ceremony or ritual called ‘Bedaya Ketawang’ which has been practised for more than 250 years and is performed once every 35 days. This dance ritual has a specific time which it has to be performed and each dance lasts for about 2 hours (and this is a monthly rehearsal)! This dance has a significant meaning because it is the love story (as told by the Royal dancer)/commemoration of two powers (as told by Suryakenchana Omar). You can read more on the academic piece by Suryakenchana Omar here.

Royal Dancers performing the dance

Royal Dancers performing the dance

Besides the dance ritual which was performed within palace grounds, within view of the public, I was also informed by one of the retired Royal palace dancers whom I met that the dance requires a minimum of 7 dancers (this was enacted by Pakubuwana 12 or ‘P.B XII’ in the 90’s) but by right, requires 9 dancers. Should there be lesser than 7 dancers available, the dance is not able to take place but the music accompaniment on the gamelan and songs must continue to be performed/ritualised.

Walking around the compounds of the Royal palace decked in cyan blue and white, you’d be able to visualize how gradiose and powerful this Royal family used to be back in their golden era. It is indeed such a pity that the Royal family and its rituals has been reduced to nothing more than something purely ceremonial in the eyes of the Indonesian government.