FRIDAY FLYER-Issue 171
Welcome to this, the final issue of our Epsom Friday Flyer for Term 1 and indeed for 2023. We have enjoyed a very productive week as you can see from our Epsom Events
This week, we enjoyed spirited performances from talented students during our annual Epsom senior and prep school Christmas concerts. Children from various age groups graced the stage, not just as performers but as individuals on a transformative journey, showcasing their diverse talents through drama productions, bands, ensembles, and solo acts.
The significance of these moments cannot be overstated as part of the holistic education and personal development of our learners. As students prepare to and eventually take the stage, they do not simply entertain; they embark on a journey of self-discovery, overcoming perceived barriers and pushing personal boundaries.
One cannot undermine the profound impact of these opportunities on a young person's learning journey. Whether revealing a hidden singing talent, honing musical skills, overcoming stage fright, or experiencing the joy of performing for the first time, each moment contributes to their growth in unique ways.
Beyond the applause and cheers, the skills cultivated on stage have far-reaching effects. Confidence, a trait essential in navigating various aspects of life, is nurtured through these experiences. The ability to perform in interviews and handle social situations is honed, setting the stage for future success.
In a recent conversation with successful CEOs, a common thread emerged—they seek graduates with not only excellent critical thinking, solid numeracy, and strong computing skills but also outstanding soft skills. Resilience, adaptability, high levels of initiative, and the ability to work collaboratively are qualities that make a candidate stand out in the professional arena.
Life is a network of connections, and our students are not just performers but contributors to this intricate web. The collaborative efforts, goal-setting, time management, commitment balancing, feedback incorporation, problem-solving, and creative thinking practiced during event preparations are invaluable life skills. These experiences lay the foundation for the development of well-rounded individuals capable of navigating the complexities of the world.
In essence, the events of this week, and the countless hours of practice leading up to them, have not only entertained but have sculpted the character and capabilities of our students. They are not just performers; they are future leaders, collaborators, and innovators, enriched by the transformative power of music and the invaluable experience of taking center stage.
I hope that you enjoy the articles to come and wish you all the very best for your weekend.
Happy Reading, Happy Friday and for those of you who will be celebrating, Happy Christmas!
A Message from our Heads of College
HoHoHo! Greetings from the Ho College ;D
A festive second half of the Autumn Term enriched with kindness, gratitude, and academic competitions.
With the aim of nurturing a striving, passionate, and motivated student body, Ann Yi (Academic Prefect) organised a Key Stage 4 Debate Week consisting of three rounds of debate. Each senior house had three representatives competing for their house.
Rosebery and Crawfurd took part in the first round, diving into the motion of “This house believes that book piracy does more harm than good.” Despite both teams having limited debating experience and facing a challenging motion, the girls did their best in delivering passionate speeches and raising razor-sharp Points of Information (POIs). The judges were particularly impressed with the latter. Although Rosebery emerged victorious, both teams engaged in friendly debate, gaining insights about the topic, as well as debating techniques and methods.
The second round, spearheaded by Propert and Granville, addressed the motion of “This house believes that AI should be integrated into law enforcement.” Like the girls, the boys made full use of the scope of the motion, presenting interesting arguments and getting into their competitive spirit. Granville was announced as the winner, making them qualified for the final round against Rosebery. It is noteworthy that the boys went head-to-head in terms of the judges’ points allocation, with Propert being behind by a very small margin. That being said, both teams gave their best effort and expressed their appreciation for this learning opportunity.
Many looked forward to the final round—the Sixth Form Centre was buzzing with noise and excitement. Rosebery and Granville competed on the motion: “This house believes that media companies should self-regulate their content as opposed to the state.” The difficulty of the motion was immediately grasped by the two teams, but they went to work anyway. After 20 minutes of preparation time, the teams came together.
Special thanks to Mr. Thompson, Mr. Caroll, Mrs. Brown, Ms. Perrang, Sameer, Karishaa, Jayden Lim, the BSE Society, the Prefect Team, and all the participants who took part in the event.
For the KS5 students, Jing Yan (Head of College) is organising a “Youth” themed Public Speaking Competition for Bright Stars of Epsom to conquer the fear of public speaking, unleash their inner speaker, and embark on this new adventure that they might love. It consists of a Qualifying round where participants submit videos, and the Final Round where shortlisted candidates compete. The deadline for the first round video submission is the 15th of January, so students are encouraged to utilise their term break to practise. She also hosted a workshop and shared useful resources to support participants in the process of crafting and practising their speeches. Most importantly, feedback will be dedicated to every speech presented to allow future improvements on the journey ahead. We aspire that these competitions have contributed to the professional and personal development of the students.
Our recent initiatives to achieve our aim of building a more intimate and well-connected community in Epsom included the “Stockings Colouring and Hanging Activity” with the Prep students. A few prefects visited the Prep school to cut out some printed stockings for the Prep kids to colour in with their own creativity, which were then connected in strings to be hung up to adorn the spaces in the Prep school. Christmas music, children’s cheering, and laughter filled the room, rendering a festive atmosphere.
Next term, the heads and deputy heads of houses are organising Prep time support for the junior students in Carr, Holman, Rosebery, and Crawfurd from 7-8 PM. They have already gathered a list of names of students from KS5 that volunteered to provide support, such as conquering the language barrier and guidance in academic work. We would like to grasp this opportunity to thank the volunteers for bringing Epsom towards a tight-knit community.
Happiness stems from gratitude. “I am happy because I’m grateful,” Will Arnett, the Canadian-American actor and comedian, once said. But “Silent gratitude isn't very much to anyone,” said the American novelist and poet - Gertrude Stein. Therefore, the Well-Being and Service prefects harnessed the opportunity that this Christmas brings and collaborated to encourage KS5 students to express their gratitude by writing on the Christmas cards. We also guided the students that their gratitude could extend beyond their teachers, to the security guards, dining hall staff, housekeeping staff, etc. Afterwards, the cards are collected, and the prefects deliver these surprises to the intended recipients. Besides that, Alis (Well-Being prefect) arranged a Kindness week right after half-term break to motivate the students to be “Kinder than Necessary.” The week was packed with presentations from the Media Society, Business & Economics Society, Interact Club, and Humanities Society. Carr boys also wrote up words of appreciation on sticky notes to be stuck on a board.
We hope that these projects have helped to maintain the well-being of our peers, brighten up the days of Epsom staff, and foster a value-led community.
Four GOALs of the Prefect team achieved ✅
As the term comes to a close, a new door of opportunity opens up for the year 12 students. Just this week, we have sent out the prefect application details and the details of attributes and job descriptions of each prefect role/department. It's crazy to think that a year ago we received this email detailing all of this information; now it is our job as prefects to pass on the role down to the new groups of Year 12s. As I reflect on our year as prefects—from the late-night planning of events, emailing the respective representatives for events, to running around making sure everything runs smoothly during events—I cannot think of a bad moment as a prefect, as I am able to give back to a school that has given me so much in return. As we prepare to receive the applications in term 2 of the academic year, we can only hope that the new applicants are as motivated and passionate about giving back to their school and society as up-and-coming prefects.
In closing, we wish everyone a joyous holiday season ahead and look forward to a vibrant upcoming term! 🎄🌟
Best wishes from the ECiM Heads of College 2023/24 - Jing Yan Lee and Elliot Ho (HoHo)
Carr House News
Carr has come alive with the festive cheer of Christmas, as beautiful decorations adorn the house and my office has been transformed into a scene reminiscent of Santa's workshop, with all of the Secret Santa gifts waiting to be given to their excited recipients.
Green, the Carr cat, is even feeling the Christmas spirit.
In our tutor time, each student had the opportunity to unveil a day on the advent calendar and enjoy the delicious chocolate within.
On Sunday, December 10th, the Carr students and staff gathered at Tune Hotel @KLIA2 for a delightful lunch featuring mouthwatering pizza, pasta, and an array of delightful Christmas desserts. It was a heartwarming occasion as the Carr family came together to enjoy a relaxed and delicious meal.
Once everyone's appetites were satisfied, we proceeded to Aeon Mall for some festive Christmas shopping dedicated to our Secret Santas. Witnessing the students' enthusiasm as they selected thoughtful gifts for their designated recipients added to the joy of the day.
In the lead-up to the Christmas dinner, Carr House students spent several evenings donning their formal attire, treating us to impromptu modeling shows along the corridors as they showcased their chosen outfits. On the eventful night itself, Carr House transformed into a scene reminiscent of the Oscars, with students emerging and looking absolutely grand and glamorous!
The Secret Santas truly excelled, generating immense anticipation as everyone eagerly awaited the unveiling of gifts beneath the tree and the delightful moment of exchanging surprises with their secret friends.
The joy reflected on the students' faces as they received their gifts was truly priceless, marking a delightful end to an exhilarating day.
Epsom College in Malaysia Christmas Maths Quiz 2023
Epsom College Malaysia Christmas Maths Quiz 2023
The Competition Maths CCA presents the 'Epsom College Malaysia Christmas Maths Quiz 2023'. Students may enter as an individual or as a team of up to 4 students. The winner/winners will be announced after the school holidays.
This Christmas themed quiz is in the style of Kangaroo Maths problems as the students look ahead to the start of the preparations for the Kangaroo Maths Competition in May 2024 and the launch of the Kangaroo Maths CCA in Term 2.
Please note that entrants from members of the Competition Maths CCA will be accepted but will receive a penalty of 1 point to account for knowledge of the answer of the question they contributed.
To take part in this quiz, follow this LINK.
Merry Christmas and have fun!
Head of Mathematics
Prep School Updates
Prep School Music Recital
Last Thursday the Prep School children all took to the theatre stage to perform a wonderful collection of musical pieces, showcasing all the music they have been learning over the course of the term. The concert programme was put together and rehearsed by the Prep School music teacher, Mr Azmi. He was assisted in rehearsals by Miss Alice Purcell, a Prep School learning assistant and music teacher.
The performance started with the Orchestra playing a medley of Christmas songs. The orchestra CCA has been organised and conducted by Mr Azmi and supported by Miss Alice.
Following the orchestra we were treated to two songs by our Early Years class. Miss Chen, our Early Education Leader and EY class teacher taught the children both the songs and the percussion accompaniment. This term the Early Years ‘Dolphins’ have been learning about resilience and courage and all of them showed both of these qualities on the stage during their rehearsals and performance.
We were then treated to a wonderful percussion and movement performance by Years 1 and 2. So many people commented after the show, how confident the children were and how joyous this particular item was. Well done to Song Shan and Tai Shan classes for this!
To end this first section of the concert, we saw the Year 1 to Year 3 choir perform their songs with energy and enthusiasm.
The next section of the concert was a brilliant showcase of the children’s hard work in their music lessons. During Key Stage 2 (Years 3-6) every child is given the opportunity to learn a musical instrument. They can choose from the violin, the flute, the cello or the saxophone.
Every single student in Key Stage 2 performed on the stage as part of an instrumental ensemble. We are extremely proud of the children for this and grateful to Mr Azmi and all the visiting music teachers for their hard work and dedication to this scheme.
Before the finale of the Prep School Choir, there was a special guest performer, supporting a special Christmas ensemble piece, Feliz Navidad. It was Mr Brown, our headmaster!
The children loved playing with him on the stage and I think he loved it most of all as his singing was very loud and enthusiastic!
Finally the choir wowed us all with their harmonies and beautiful singing to end a fantastic afternoon of music. Both choirs were rehearsed and conducted by Ms Liew and accompanied by Ms Chong on the piano
Thanks so much to Mr Azmi, the visiting music teachers, Ms Alice, Ms Chen Mr Crann and all of the Prep School staff who have supported the children in getting reading for this brilliant show.
Singing in the Malls
On Saturday 9th December, some students from the Key Stage 2 choir delighted audiences at IOI Mall in Cyberjaya and at Aeon Mall in Nial. The children sang with the same energy and enthusiasm as they did in Thursday’s concert despite the reduced size of the choir.
A big thank you to Ms Siew who has tirelessly rehearsed and prepared the choirs again this term, Mr Crann who accompanied the choir during rehearsals and on Saturday at the Mall and to Mr Azmi for supporting the event.
I would also like to thank our Gap and Grad students Afiq and Joel who also came to the mall to be our sound engineers!
All I Want for Christmas - Prep School Drama Show
The final Prep School performance of the term was the much anticipated drama production, ‘All I Want for Christmas’. We performed to a large theatre audience on Monday 11th December and yet again, every single Prep School student performed on the stage.
The show was the brain-child of Mrs Jennifer Garnett, our drama teacher but the ideas were brought to life by the children themselves. The older students in Years 5 and 6 wrote their own scripts: a mixture of pathos and comedy, telling the story of a mix-up with Santa’s naughty and nice lists! The children performed their lines with aplomb, having the audience laughing and sobbing in equal measure.
The brilliant storyline was enhanced with choral verses and dances from EYFS up to Year 4. Ms Chen again led the rehearsals and creative direction of our youngest learners; Mrs Garnett inspired excellence from our Year 3, 4 and CCA groups with their choral verse performances and movements.
Mrs Long added the final sparkle to the show by choreographing the Year 4 dance and the finale curtain call.
The above group of teachers, directors and choreographers does not tell the whole story of how the show made it to the stage however. As well as the tireless, hard work from the children each week, every member of the Prep team contributed to the show. The class teachers and Learning Assistants supported rehearsals and worked backstage; they also made props and scenery for the production.
Beyond the Prep School team, Mrs Tamlyn Calder, the head of Epsom Drama was our backstage coordinator, Ms Nourah Elkemary coordinated the gathering and production of Props and scenery and last but not least, our Graduate and Gap Year assistants Joel and Afiq designed the lighting and controlled the sound.
Finally, a massive thanks needs to go to the Prep School parents for organising the costumes for the children, they looked sensational and it really made the show into something special.
I am sure you will agree that it was an amazing team effort and thanks again to Mrs Garnett for the positivity, passion and joy that she injected into this project. It was my perfect Christmas gift!
Mrs Jane Rouson
Head of Prep School
Santa's Little Helpers
It's truly heartening to hear about Epsom's commitment to giving back and spreading joy during the Christmas season. The Santa's Little Helper sale, spearheaded by Crawfurd and Granville, is a wonderful initiative. The focus on small, heartfelt gifts like Santa's sleighs and Christmas packages, especially handmade by the dedicated Crawfurd team (Shannie, Terry, Jesslyn, Halima, Isabel), shows a genuine effort to bring smiles to teachers and students. The significance placed on notes from different students and teachers underscores the emotional connection and impact of such thoughtful gestures. The collaboration with Granville's service team (Daniel, Maize, Bill) in distributing the gifts highlights the teamwork and community spirit at Epsom.
Comment from Ms. Georgia Prestidge: “Being personally delivered a Christmas box was such a special treat - especially as I wasn’t expecting one! It had lots of yummy treats inside; the homemade brownie was a particularly delicious highlight. On duty in Crawfurd, I also saw the tremendous effort that went into putting the gifts together. All in all, a superb way to bring the school community some festive cheer.”
Comment from Ms. Zena Dai: “The Santa's Little Helpers' Sale was a wonderful initiative by the students from Crawfurd and Granville in support of the Yayasan Chow Kit Charity, aligning so well with the spirit of Christmas. I was incredibly impressed by the students' organization and the quality and presentation of edible goodies available to gift students, fellow colleagues, and friends. 🎄🧑🎄🌿”
The Christmas sale for the prep school and the evident joy on the kids' faces speak volumes about the positive atmosphere created during the event. The decision to donate the profits to Yayasan Chow Kit, a non-profit organization supporting children's potential with love and guidance, demonstrates a commitment to making a meaningful impact.
The school visit of Yayasan Chow Kit Charity went well thanks to individuals like Jack, Aisy, Halima, Terry, Isabel, Hana, Jarrel, Maize, Nicklas, Nysa, Young Gyoum, Rion, Rosheenie, Sawa, Seehee, Shaizat, Tom, Leo Zhou, Sunny, Yuren, Shannie, and Daniel who contributed to the day's success. We show gratitude for their efforts. A cheque of a generous donation of RM 2000 donated to the charity was generated from the Santa’s Little Helpers’ Sale and Prep school’s sale. The day's activities, filled with laughter, sweat, and music, from football to musical chairs to duck duck goose and basketball, highlighted the joy and fun shared between Epsom and Yayasan Chow Kit Charity.
Here is the link if you would like to donate or contribute to YCK!! (https://yck.org.my/2023/05/11/needs-for-our-3-centres/)
As we anticipate more future collaborations between Epsom and YCK, we express our gratitude for your support. Wishing you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year 🙂
Shannie, Y12 (Santa’s Little Helper!)
Business Studies and Economics Society Updates
Special STEP CCA - Run by Alan Davies, Professor Emeritus of Mathematics at the University of Hertfordshire
Visit from Professor Alan Davies, from the Mathematics and Physics Department of the University of Hertfordshire
This week the Maths and Physics Department welcomed Professor Alan Davies, a highly experienced mathematician from the UK who has worked for the University and Hertfordshire and The Royal Institution.
On Monday, some of our Year 9s learned about ‘The Story of Pi’, one of the most important numbers in mathematics. They learned a little about the history of Pi and then how to approximate its value using unusual techniques. It was wonderful for the students to encounter Pi from a different perspective, whilst hearing about some incredible facts about Pi, such as how Emma Haruka Iwao set a new World Record for the most accurate calculation of the value of Pi, by 31.4 trillion digits. We were also treated to some ‘Pi’ themed jokes, such as the irony of 3.14 written backwards…
On Monday during CCA time, some Year 12 and Year 13 Maths and Further Maths students were lucky enough to solve some ‘STEP questions’ with Professor Davies. ‘STEP questions’ are extremely challenging maths problems that some British universities use as admissions tests. The questions require excellent knowledge of A Level, as well as resilience and creative thought. It was wonderful to see so many students in attendance.
On Tuesday, Professor Davies delivered a talk to students from Year 9-Year 13 called ‘Measuring the speed of light’. He gave us a fascinating history of the development of the increasing precision with which we know the value of the speed of light. Professor Davies even suggested ways in which students can themselves measure the value, using a bar of chocolate and a microwave.
All the presentations delivered by Professor Davies opened the students’ minds to areas of mathematics and Physics that go beyond the classroom and we hope that he will return to work with our students again in the future.
Ms Olivia Archibald,
Head of Mathematics
Epsom Mouratoglou Tennis Programme Updates
Adrianna, Year 9 Crawfurd, recently flew to New Delhi, India as she was selected to represent Malaysia as part of the Sportexcel Organisation to compete in the US KIDS GOLF INDIAN CHAMPIONSHIP 2023. This event was held in Classic Golf and Country Club New Delhi, India from December 6 to 8 2023.
Adrianna did well, secured a 5th placing and earned herself a Top 5 finish for the competition.
She played in tough weather conditions where the temperature was as low as 10 degrees in the morning, facing strong winds, tough and fast greens.
Adrianna had a pretty hectic week of continuous golf after the US KIDS GOLF COMPETITION Grand Finale in Afamosa last weekend.
Congratulations to Adrianna!
Inter House Basketball
The CCA schedule was suspended this week so that our students could compete against each other in an Inter House Basketball event. The matches were very exciting to watch!
Key Stage 5 Christmas Social
Our Year 12 and 13 students took a break from their studies this week and enjoyed a festive social event together and exchanged gifts…
Friends of Epsom Charity Bazaar
Our Friends of Epsom parents have been busy this week organising fun festive events to raise money for worthy causes…
The History of Christmas
Christmas has become commercialised in this modern era. Bastardised to the extent that tradition is nigh forgotten. Governments promote the festivities to increase Gross Domestic Product; have you noticed Christmas begins a little bit sooner each year?
Christmas was not always like this. Its roots grow from religion, from the birth of Jesus Christ. Actually the 25th of December is not his birthday, the bible does not seem to specify. In fact this date was first asserted some 350 years later by pope Julius. Though the accuracy seems dubious, we public tend not to question a hearty celebration.
We need little excuse to do so.
What are your connotations of Christmas? What first comes to mind when it's mentioned?
Santa Claus is iconic to Christmas, though he was not always red. Originally, he was green!
It was Coca Cola who first depicted Father Christmas in a mantle as red as his rosy cheeks. Specifically Mr Haddon Sundblom, commissioned by their advertising department in 1931. The idea of Santa derives from Saint Nicholas, a Turkish priest (or monk) born around 280 AD. The generous spirit of this jolly Jove led him to become the patron Saint of children and sailors. His image swirled like snow upon gusts of century to become today's plump giant. Once a year, visiting the house of every good child regardless of nationality, affluence and upbringing.
Santa is not alone on his annual voyage. His diminutive elves assist in his mammoth task. However, these sprightly critters are a fairly recent addition. Elves in general stray for the dark forests of Norse mythology; many centuries old indeed. But in 1850 American author Louisa May Alcott wrote a novel featuring green clad elves assisting Santa Claus. How this idea cottoned on I do not know, especially since Alcott never published the book (Titled, rather bluntly, ‘Christmas Elves’).
Many Christian dwellings bear quite an opulence to herald festivities. Traditionally this includes: Nutcrackers glowering over doorways; satsumas symbolising the gift of gold by St. Nicholas; evergreen rings of wreaths representing both eternal life and the holy crown worn by Jesus during his crucifixion. We cannot forget, of course, the splendour Christmas tree. This necessity is a German invention. The evergreen nature of conifers again represents ‘life everlasting’ when we remember our ancestors with gratitude for what they bequeathed to us. The Christmas tree spread its roots to England in 1840 (approx.) by the British royal family who are actually German by blood. (Their current name of Windsor changed from Saxe-Coburg in 1917 for moral purposes after WW1).
Whilst history is set in stone its memory is ebbing away; each year becoming more distant, more transparent as years expire. When was Santa last depicted in green? Or called St. Nicholas? Christmas is certainly evolving, yet the spirit is still prominent amongst many cultures. Us, for example.
Now! With all said and done. I wish each and every one of you a magnificent Merry Christmas.
Year 12, Granville
So, Dear Reader,
Thank you for reading our Epsom Friday Flyer and we wish you all the very best for a restful weekend and a wonderful term break with your children.
Happy Friday and Merry Christmas from us all at Epsom.
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