FRIDAY FLYER-Issue 148
Happy Friday Dear Reader,
Welcome to issue 148 of our Epsom Friday Flyer and to the end of the first week of Term 3.
I trust that you enjoyed a restful and happy term break with your loved ones.
Lessons at Epsom resumed on Tuesday 25th April and it was a pleasure to welcome over 40 new students to our Epsom family.
As many of you will know, Mrs Garnett and I, along with Ms Suhada, Mr Subash, Ms Carol, Mr Carroll, Mr Garnett, Mr Calder, Ms Dayang and Mr Tee, took 95 of our students from Years 7 – 10 to visit our sister school, Epsom College UK. It was a wonderful experience and precious memories were made!
See our trip Instagram posts!
As there were so many of us travelling, we had to split into two groups for the flights! There was a lovely atmosphere at the airport as many parents came to see us off.
Students and staff were equally excited!
Despite being very tired after the flight, everyone was excited to explore the beautiful grounds where Spring had sprung with bright daffodils in bloom:
We stayed in Forest and Holman Houses but Mrs Garnett had to go and see Carr House!
Be sure to see the Carr House Instagram page to really appreciate the excitement!
We then split into two groups… Thanks to our Mouratoglou Tennis Programme, we have many extremely talented tennis student athletes in our midst and we were keen to take advantage of our proximity to London to visit the home of tennis – Wimbledon! We enjoyed a guided tour, visited the renowned Centre Court and had the opportunity to sit in the box where players are interviewed after their match! The weather was rather chilly so our Epsom trip hoodies came into their own!
While the student athletes visited Wimbledon, the other group of students enjoyed a river tour along the Thames and visited Tower Bridge.
We then met up together and enjoyed the packed lunch that our Epsom UK catering team had prepared for us.
Next came our visit to Hampton Court Palace, one of King Henry VIII’s favoured hunting lodges. We took a tour of the beautiful grounds, saw the old rooms, outfits, kitchens and explored the famous maze!
That evening, our students opted to enjoy the facilities at Epsom and went for a swim – so did I!! See our Instagram to enjoy the video!! My dive will certainly go down in Epsom history!
The next day we all woke up early and set off for London by bus. We visited St Paul’s Cathedral and walked over Millennium Bridge before enjoying a guided tour of the Globe Theatre.
We enjoyed lunch at Tate Modern Museum and then walked back to the Globe Theatre to enjoy a performance of Shakespeare’s The Tempest.
Despite the very busy and long day, our students still found the energy to enjoy the facilities at Epsom UK later that evening:
The next day was another early start and following another lovely English breakfast we set off for Buckingham Palace, a tour of St James’s Palace, Westminster Abbey and the Houses of Parliament. After lunch the group split into two. Those students who wanted to were able to meet up with Old Epsomians Bryan, Cadence and Naomi who are all in their first year at UCL, Imperial and LSE respectively. It was wonderful to see these students again and we thank them for giving so generously of their time.
The other group enjoyed a tour of the Tower of London. We then all met up and went to The Lyceum to enjoy Lion King, the Musical – wonderful!
After a good night’s sleep we set off for Cambridge. We met up with one of my old Physics students – Mohsen.
I taught Mohsen prior to moving to Malaysia. He secured a place at Cambridge to read Material Science and is currently completing a PhD there. He very kindly agreed to show us around Jesus College where he is based. We thoroughly enjoyed the tour – Cambridge is breathtakingly beautiful and that day the weather was clement. Students enjoyed a scavenger hunt around the city before consuming copious amounts of Pizza in Pizza Hut! Retail therapy was also required that day and students took delight in exploring the many little bespoke boutiques around the town where they purchased souvenirs of their visit.
We were delighted that three of our other old Epsomians – Drexel who studies at Cambridge and Tia and Manfred – both at Durham, came to see us in person. (Pictured are Tia and Drexel)
On our last day we met with Sir Anthony Seldon, Headmaster of Epsom UK which was a valuable experience. We are most fortunate to enjoy such strong links with our colleagues in Epsom UK.
We then took the students to Harry Potter Studios:
The highlight of the evening was the Harry Potter themed banquet that Epsom UK had prepared for our students as a farewell dinner. It was magic!!
All in all, this trip was a huge success on many levels. I want to thank all the staff at Epsom UK who were so very welcoming and made our visit so special. I would also like to thank our Epsom Malaysia staff who accompanied us, generously giving of their time over term break. Special thanks to Mrs Garnett without whom this trip could not have been possible – thank you Jenny!
We are excited for the term ahead and wish those of our students sitting their final examinations all the very best.
Happy Reading and Happy Friday!
Mr Matthew Brown,
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A Message From the Leadership Team - Mrs Carden Brown
The Building Blocks of Character:
At the start of this new term, I encourage students to reflect on the importance of taking responsibility for their learning and achievement. This leads on from an earlier message from our Deputy Headteacher, Academic, Mrs Parker on the Epsom Learning Characteristics – see Issue 145 of our Epsom Friday Flyer.
|Curiosity||To wonder, question, explore, experiment. For example asking questions, completing independent research or trying new methods or techniques.|
|Resilience||To be determined, persevering, to be able to recover, to be willing to practise. For example, trying again when you fail or practising to improve.|
|Creativity||To be able to connect and visualise. For example, showing the ability to transfer skills between topics, thinking of different ways to solve problems or to consider different approaches to studying or working.|
|Reflectiveness||To be able to evaluate a situation and self-evaluate. For example, showing improvement based on feedback that has been given by a teacher or peer or understanding why something has not worked or how it might be done differently next time.|
|Attention||To be able to notice, concentrate, contemplate, immerse. For example, showing listening skills, staying on task in class or getting involved in discussions.|
|Collaborating||To be social, accepting, to be able to imitate, empathise and lead. For example, being able to be a team player, being helpful to others, leading group work.|
|Organisation||To be able to plan and be resourceful. For example, completing tasks, including homework, on time, finding information independently, finding solutions.|
|Thinking||To be able to deduce, analyse, critique, intuit. For example, understanding reasons, significance and importance or understanding the deeper meaning behind a text or event|
The importance of these ‘soft skills’ cannot be underestimated.
As students progress through school, we encourage them to make good choices, to challenge themselves to develop the building blocks of character and non-cognitive qualities that will enable them to flourish as learners and thrive as adults.
Intellectual virtues such as autonomy, critical thinking, curiosity, judgement, reasoning, reflection and resourcefulness will enable the student to discern the right course of action and how to pursue knowledge, truth and understanding. In a world where alternative truths abound, these virtues are more important than ever before.
Moral virtues including compassion, courage, gratitude, honesty, humility, integrity, justice and respect will enable students to act well in situations that require an ethical response. Ever mindful that we are educating the next generation of politicians, lawyers and leaders, we seek to develop these moral virtues in our students.
Civic virtues such as citizenship, civility, community awareness, neighbourliness, service and volunteering will develop young adults that will be a force for the greater good in their communities.
Performance virtues that include confidence, determination, motivation, perseverance, resilience and teamwork are vital for academic success as well as to be able to cope in the real world as professionals who will face pressures and challenges that technology has made omnipresent. They will be better equipped to embrace and leverage the opportunities, in essence they will be future ready.
At Epsom, we seek to prepare our students for their examinations and for life. We offer a very broad range of learning experiences in and beyond the classroom. Music, sport, drama, extra and super curricular activities all combine to offer an environment to stretch and challenge students intellectually, personally, socially, physically and at times emotionally – for example getting up on a stage and presenting to others is one of the most scary things for anyone!
For the magic to happen, for the character to develop, students must try, take the leap of faith, step up and take risks – their attitude is key to their learning journey, to their relationships with others and to their success…
As we start the new term, we encourage all our students to embrace these building blocks of character – to be proactive, to try new things, to step outside of their comfort zone and face their fears. Success is a choice, hard work beats talent when talent doesn’t work hard.
Best wishes for a wonderful weekend,
Mrs Kate Carden – Brown
Director of Admissions and Higher Education
Recommended reading for parents and students: The GCSE Mindset – Steve Oakes and Martin Griffin.
Epsom Live Talk
Towards the end of the last academic term, we were given the honour to host an Epsom Live Talk with Tony Pua. Mr Pua is a Malaysian businessman and politician who previously served as the Member of Parliament for Petaling Jaya Utara and Damansara under the Democratic Action Party. During his time in office, Mr Pua was known for his vocal criticism of government corruption and scandals and was a prominent figure in Malaysia’s political opposition. Given this opportunity, we were keen to learn more on his perspectives of the current political landscape of Malaysia and his personal experiences as a politician.
The audience consisted of students from Year 9 – 13 and Mr Pua simplified the most complex political and economic matters so that his content was accessible to all. Mr Pua also did not shy away from touching on sensitive topics such as 1MDB and the racial inequality present in Malaysia. His transparency was greatly appreciated and broadened our perspective on current affairs.
Throughout the interview, Mr Pua blew me away because of the way he answered the questions that we threw at him, especially our more controversial questions. His insights into the political landscape of Malaysia were invaluable at a time of recent political instability. Mr Pua’s dedication to transparency and accountability in government is testament to his moral compass and his belief in democracy.
We were left with a sense of admiration as to how Mr Pua stands his ground and continues to fight for what he believes to be right.
Speaking to Mr Tony Pua was an honour—we were grateful to have had the opportunity to pick his mind. His courage, integrity and passion continue to inspire us to make a difference in our communities and in the world. Thank you, Mr Tony Pua for your time, your insights and your dedication to building a better future for all Malaysians.
Pei Wen – Year 12 Rosebery and Jenson – Year 12 Propert
Some of the questions asked are listed below:
- As the first politician who saw discrepancies in 1MDB from the 5 billion invested into PetroSaudi, can you tell us about your initial involvement and reaction in investigating the 1MDB scandal?
- What do you think are the root causes of corruption in Malaysia, and how can we address them?
- As someone who thinks that GST should not be reimplemented, could you elaborate and explain your views to the audience?
- What do you believe are the most pressing issues facing our country today and how in your view could they be solved?
- When you first entered politics, what were your goals and aspirations and since then, have your goals changed and why?
Below are some thoughts of students who attended the live talk:
The Epsom Live Talk with former MP of Damansara Tony Pua was particularly intriguing mainly due to his views towards inequality of racial hierarchy in Malaysia, which I, as a Chinese-Malaysian, could relate to. It was especially insightful to hear the views and opinions of a politician as they differed from that of the media and public. I was curious about his opinions regarding “brain drain”, as he is a classic example of a Malaysian graduating from a prestigious institution like the University of Oxford. I asked Mr. Pua about his views on how the country should come about solving the problem of “brain drain”, and his idea was simple: to amend policies in companies favouring the promotion of a certain race, as most Chinese-Malaysians who have graduated from prestigious educational institutions tend to prefer starting a career in our neighbouring country, Singapore. This is because promotions within corporations in Singapore are generally more achievable, especially for Chinese-Malaysians, compared to Malaysia. Furthermore, the average income of higher-income professions is a lot higher than those in Malaysia. Purely based on these facts, “brain drain” is and will become a much bigger problem for our nation.
Garrison, Year 13 Propert
Mr Tony Pua being invited was a great opportunity for many to learn more about Malaysian politics and our economic climate through the perspective of a politician and someone who has proposed economic policies for Malaysia. I asked about his view on affirmative action and dependency culture in Malaysia which was met with a clear and interesting explanation you could not get out from a textbook! His view on Malaysian politics today is something many of us resonate with given his party’s aim to create a Malaysia where we vote based on policy rather than based on race – reinforcing the idea of a united Malaysian that is not separated by race.
Rachel Sia, Year 12
It was a memorable afternoon as we got interesting insights about Malaysian politics, from a politician himself; although he is currently taking a break from politics. As Economics students, he gave us a perspective of economics from a political landscape, which we found truly intriguing. We have learned a lot from Mr Tony Pua and we are very grateful for it.
Karishaa Year 12 Crawfurd and Yi Shan, Year 12 Rosebery
Attending this live talk enabled me to gain a deeper understanding of Malaysia’s current economics and politics. During the Live Talk, Mr Tony Pua shared with us some of his remarkable experiences as a politician. I was particularly impressed when he shared with us the reasons for the government to abolish GST. Overall, this was an enriching experience for me to learn something new and meaningful about my beloved country.
Shang Jing, Year 12 Granville
A Message from Holman House
New Term, New Goals!
As we commence the final term of school, rested and energised, it is fitting that we set new goals as we look towards the next academic year! Goal setting is an essential part of achieving success, both in our personal and professional lives.
With this in mind, I spoke to some of our Holman Prefects about their goals and here are some of their responses…
Melvern, Year 9: “Setting goals provides direction and focus, for example, I am working well in Maths but I want to do better. I really want to join the Kangaroo Maths programme to be the best I can be! When you have a clear idea of what you want to accomplish, you can focus your efforts and energy on the actions that will help you get there!”
Keevan, Year 8, comments that “goals are effective in measuring progress. For example, when I joined the school I was disappointed with my low Geography score. I looked at the areas I needed to improve on and got a grade 4 last term! This term I want to get a 5!”
Takuma, Year 9, believes that “achieving goals can be a powerful confidence booster. When I first started at school I was quite shy but learning to speak English allowed me to make new friends with other non-Japanese speakers”.
Michiya, Year 8, advises that “setting goals can help you to grow and develop as a person and that it is important to set not just academic goals, but also sporting and social ones, too!”
Finally, Kanato, Year 7, has been thinking much more long term. He passionately says “my ultimate goal is to be a pilot and fly around the world. I’ve already achieved one goal, coming to Epsom to learn English, my ultimate goal is to fly around the world!”
Whatever your goals may be, goal setting is a crucial tool for achieving success and living a fulfilling life. By setting clear, achievable goals and working towards them with focus and determination, you can accomplish great things and reach your full potential. I have every confidence that these and all students at Epsom can achieve them – you’ve just got to set them!
Mr Matt Richardson,
Housemaster Holman House.
ABRSM & EuroAsia Strings Success!’
In the week before Easter 6 students took ABRSM Music Exams.
We are extremely pleased to say that all students passed the exam and played very well. Congratulations to the following students:
Zen (Year 4) – Grade 1 Piano
Qaim (Year 5) – Grade 2 Piano
Osborne (Year 6) – Grade 1 Saxophone
Siha (Year 7) – Grade 3 Cello
Lloyd (Year 8) – Grade 4 Clarinet
Taranie (Intern) – Grade 7 Violin
Congratulations to Paxton (Year 6) who won a Silver Medal at the EuroAsia Youth Music Festival in the Solo Category for Piano at the beginning of the School holidays.
Paxton entered the Grade 6 category and was one of the youngest in his group. Paxton also plays the drums and the flute and has made amazing progress as a musician at Epsom since joining the Early Years class in 2017. Well done, Paxton.
Mr Russell Crann,
Director of Music
A Day to Remember
Epsom Culture Day
You may remember, at the end of last term we celebrated Epsom Culture Day. This was a student-conceived and student-led initiative to recognise and celebrate Epsom’s extremely diverse student body, incorporating over 23 nationalities.
We celebrate our diversity in and of itself as well as for the opportunities that it offers to enrich the wider learning of our students as they make friends with peers from different backgrounds, who speak different languages, eat different foods and may adhere to different beliefs.
During the event parents came in to present their culture via their booths offering activities alongside students and staff. We also enjoyed performances including a Greek Dance performed by our Mouratoglou Tennis Coaches before we all enjoyed an evening meal together at the break of fast.
We thought that you might like to see some of the pictures of the event:
It was wonderful to see our parents, staff and students celebrating together at this special event.
Thank you to everyone who supported us and let’s do it again next year!
The International Prefects.
During Term break there were various camps available to improve English levels while having fun:
We also hosted tennis camps…
During the 5 day Tennis Flagship camp we welcomed players from Vietnam, Hong Kong, Japan, Thailand and America. Were delighted to host some of our own Mouratoglou Tennis Programme (MTP) participants namely Shino, Riona and Eva.
From 15-18 April we welcomed a total of 30 players to our UTR tournament from Indonesia, Russia, Hong Kong, Vietnam, Malaysia. We were delighted that our MTP players bagged the win:
Shino – 1st place Girls Under 10
Lynn Lim – 1st place Girls under 18
Kyra – 2nd place Girls Under 18
Riona – 3rd place Girls under 14
For more information on our MTP Camps please visit our website:https://mouratoglou.epsomschool.com/camps/
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Golf at Epsom
ECM Golf Academy
Summer Holiday Camps
Dear Junior Golfers,
I am excited to invite you for a memorable holiday golf camp experience. Our series of holiday camps is designed for the “playing junior”. We focus on ways to lower your scores on the course by looking into key areas such as proper warm up, mental preparation and routines, game plans and strategy, course management, rules, shot selection, course nutrition, short game training and technical advice when required.
Please note: Registrations open to Juniors with golf handicap 18 below.
Reason: The ECM Golf Academy facility is scheduled to complete after summer break July/August 2023. Therefore this year’s summer camps will be conducted daily on the golf course at Kota Seriemas GCC.
Looking forward to seeing you on the course!
Travis van Dijk
ECM Golf Academy
Summer Camp schedule
Spring break campers from Japan enjoying a golf lesson with ECM Golf Academy Head Coach.
Please note: ECM Golf Academy flagship camp this summer is hosted on course @ Kota Seriemas GCC.
Over 100 KS3 students took part in Epsom’s first-ever Aquathlon this year – a multidisciplinary event starting with a 100m swim and finishing off with a 1.8 km run.
Our 50-acre campus houses state-of-the-art sporting facilities to facilitate various sports including swimming, football, rugby, cricket, tennis, and many more.
Find out more about the sports programmes/ activities at Epsom College in Malaysia by reaching out to our dedicated Epsom colleagues at email@example.com or WhatsApp at +6016-2267831.
Youth STEM Cup 2023
A Great Learning Experience
Joining a STEM competition can be a thrilling yet challenging experience for anyone passionate about Science, Technology, engineering, and Mathematics. STEM competitions provide a platform for students to showcase their knowledge, creativity, and innovation in these areas.
At the end of term, we had the opportunity to participate in a STEM competition organised by the Association of Malaysian International Science Olympiads (AMISO). My team and I participated in the Youth STEM Cup competition, where we were tasked with solving and answering scientific questions that require a fundamental understanding of the subject.
The preparation for the competition was intense and required a lot of hard work and dedication.
We spent a few weeks reading through the materials provided and having group discussions to help us better prepare for the competition. Then, we joined the preliminary round of the competition. We are encouraged to work out the solutions for 30 questions in Biology, Physics, Chemistry, Astronomy and Mathematics within 1 hour. By working together as a team, we solved most of the problems and submitted our answers on time.
We received a quick response from the committee and we were delighted to learn that we had qualified for the final round of the competition. We quickly set to work to prepare ourselves for the final round of the competition.
On the day of the competition, we were nervous but excited. We had put in much effort and were eager to see how our team would perform. We arrived at the competition venue held at Heriot-Watt University early in the morning. Then, we had a school tour before the final and spent the rest of the morning competing against other teams from different schools.
The competition was tough, and we faced many challenges along the way. We were given five problems in the form of 10 questions that required us to solve the problems using scientific method. The questions were equally divided into five areas of Science. One of the questions was particularly challenging and we were unable to provide a solution for that problem. However, we persevered and remained focused, and we were proud to be able to complete most of the assigned challenges.
Participating in this competition also meant that we had to work as a team, which was a valuable learning experience. All team members had to communicate effectively, collaborate on ideas, and work towards a common goal. It was not always easy, as we had our fair share of disagreements, but we learned to compromise and work together towards a solution.
At the end of the day, we did not win this competition, but we were proud of what we had achieved. We learned so much during the process, and we gained invaluable experiences that will serve us well in our future studies and careers.
Participating in a STEM competition is a great way to challenge oneself and to learn new things. It requires dedication, hard work, and perseverance, but the rewards are well worth it. The experience taught me that failure is not always a bad thing as it can be an opportunity to learn and grow. Another important lesson I have learned is that teamwork is essential in any field, and that success is often the result of collaboration and cooperation.
Overall, joining the Youth STEM Cup is an excellent way for us to develop valuable skills and meet like-minded individuals who share a similar passion for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics. The competition will be hosted annually around March if anyone is interested in these respective fields. Therefore, I would like to recommend any students who want to take their knowledge and skills to the next level to get involved in this competition.
Our Team Members were all Granvillians in Year 13:
Ammar, Jing Ren, Marc and me, Zhi Yu.
Special thanks to Mr Baloyo for guiding us for the competition.
Best wishes for the weekend,
A Message From Epsom Humanities Department
It is great to be back at school after the Spring Break and it has been very interesting to hear the wonderful stories from the students returning from Epsom College UK about their experiences of British culture and of what they saw on their visits to London and Cambridge.
Of course London is now being prepared for a hugely important historical event –the coronation of Charles III on May 6, 2023. The last coronation was held in 1953, when Queen Elizabeth II was crowned at Westminster Abbey in London. The coronation of Charles III will similarly involve a number of rituals and ceremonies, including the anointing of the monarch with holy oil, the presentation of symbols of authority such as the sceptre and orb, and the crowning of the monarch with the St. Edward’s Crown. Not only will Charles be crowned King but also his wife Camilla will be crowned Queen which has been a source of much controversy in the UK. There will be over 2000 guests attending within the Abbey itself with millions more celebrating on the streets outside on what is an official Public Holiday which is much more of a rarity in the UK compared to Malaysia! The coronation of Prince Charles will be a significant milestone in the history of the British monarchy, marking the start of a new reign and the continuation of a tradition that dates back over a thousand years and should be a momentous occasion that would be remembered for generations to come.
It must be noted that this academic year has been one of the most eventful in terms of politics that I can remember. In the UK not only did Queen Elizabeth II sadly die in September 2022 but there have also been three Prime Ministers in Boris Johnson, Liz Truss and Rishi Sunak with the Deputy Prime Minister Dominic Raab resigning this week on charges of bullying. In the United States a former President has been arrested for the first time in history and in Malaysia a former Prime Minister has been imprisoned. Along with the excitement of the Malaysian elections in November it has certainly been a tumultuous eight months which has provided the A level Politics students with lots of relevant and topical case studies that will be useful for their examinations.
Indeed the key focus for this term in Year 11 and Year 13 is the continuing preparation for the GCSE and A Level examinations in History , Geography and Politics that will be taking place in May and June this year. As well as this Year 10 and Year 12 students are busy revising for the end of Year examinations that will be starting in only two weeks. I wish all students the best of luck and how they achieve what their hard work deserves.
In Year 7 in History lessons students have been looking at the development of castles as well as developing their use of primary sources. In Year 8 History they have started to look at US Civil Rights in the 1950s and in Year 9 students have been continuing to study events of the Twentieth Century and have been completing work on the causes of the Cold War. In KS3 Geography students are studying map skills as well looking case studies on a range of Asian countries.
At the end of last term the Humanities Department was involved in the exciting whole school STEM week. Key Stage 3 History lessons were delivered on how war leads to faster evolving technology as well as the history of the Space Race within the context of the Cold War. Students in Key Stage 3 Geography researched and presented information that they collected on the weather and climate of all the planets in our solar system. Students enjoyed looking at our subjects from a different scientific perspective and some excellent pieces of work were produced.
Finally I would like to thank all the teachers in the Humanities Department for all their hard work and dedication as well as the students in the Humanities Society who have put up a range of interesting displays and delivered many presentations throughout the year.
Mr James Dale
Head of Humanities