FRIDAY FLYER-Issue 90 - Epsom College in Malaysia

SOPs for Covid-19

Please follow this link for the College Standard Operational Procedures (SOPs) for Covid-19 as well as related Q & A information.
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FRIDAY FLYER-Issue 90

Headmaster’s Review

Dear Parents,

Although it may seem, to the world at large, that we are wholly consumed by matters solely pertaining to Covid-19, it is refreshing to emphasise that this is far from the case. As has been extensively recounted, we are taking every necessary medical precaution and this has unfortunately led to the postponement/cancellation of some recent events. Indeed, this has also affected traditional fixtures with schools nearer to JB and Singapore also. However, the general trend amongst Malaysian schools has been ‘business as usual’ and it is therefore excellent to record some of the achievements of our pupils in recent days. Although there are many to choose from, I would like to concentrate on simply two examples of our College’s recent sporting endeavours.

Firstly, from a Prep School perspective, the KTJ FOBISIA tournament on Friday 14th and Saturday 15th February was a first-class spectacle. We witnessed superb individual performances in a range of pursuits, such as track and field & swimming, and really determined collective efforts in football and Tee-Ball. The Epsom pupils demonstrated exceptional sporting prowess and competitiveness throughout, keenly highlighted by the outstanding haul of medals that they achieved, and did so in the most graceful and gracious manner. All those involved were an absolute credit to the College and I would also like to commend the unstinting support of the Prep School parents who were able to attend.

Secondly, whilst not every senior school fixture has continued, this has still allowed the College to focus on its internal events and provisions for pupils. Thus, for example, we have enjoyed enhanced inter-House competitions in rugby and swimming, with the latter witnessing some excellent PBs from certain pupils. Furthermore, as this week’s sporting review illustrates, a number of our senior pupils have achieved great success in the ongoing MSSD games, for instance in athletics. This is wonderful to behold and well done to all!

Underpinning all our activities, of course, is the focus on the central wellbeing of our pupil body. Therefore, it was most appropriate that this week began (on Monday 17th February) with a College Assembly on digital awareness by Mr Ottewell (Deputy Head – Pastoral). The on-line activity, and welfare, of our pupils is increasingly of prime significance and it is essential to reiterate the core message on this topic: please engage with all the benefits and positives of social media and the internet per se, but be mindful and cautious of the pitfalls that are also prevalent. This theme will be revisited often in the weeks and months ahead.

This week also saw the departure of our three excellent ECUK Gap students – Finlay, James and Macey. They have been superb throughout and contributed a great deal to the dynamic of the College, in addition to building the relations between Epsom communities across the globe. We thank them for all their contributions in the past six months and wish them well for the next stage in their educational journey.

We have, of course, a very busy week ahead with the w/c 24th February involving, to name but a few events, the Prep School PTC days, the Year 10 & Year 12 Options Event, the House Drama Competition on Thursday 27th February, and the Year 11 & Year 13 PTC, before culminating in the Exeat weekend break.

Thank you all for your support and, as per my most recent letter of Wednesday 19th February, we will do our utmost to keep you informed of any further developments on the Covid-19 situation.

With many thanks,

Best regards,

Dr Murray Tod
Headmaster


Was The British Empire a Force for Good?

It has been a very busy and exciting year in the History and Politics Department at ECiM. Our GCSE and Sixth Form students have been working really hard on their coursework as well as preparing for their final exams in the summer.

There are many fascinating topics being explored by our pupils. The Year 13 Politics students have been able to observe a tumultuous year in British politics and delivered an excellent assembly in the Grayling Centre on the differing views on Brexit and the potential impact it may cause. Year 9 History students have been studying events of the Twentieth Century; four students volunteered to take part in the annual Remembrance Day assembly and delivered the presentation with clarity and confidence. Year 7 students have been looking at the Middle Ages and using primary evidence to examine and interpret the differences in everyday life from today.

Year 8 History students are looking at the impact of the British Empire on various countries throughout the world. The students are collaborating on a presentation for the rest of their class on a country of their choice. The countries chosen included Malaysia, India, Australia, South Africa and New Zealand. I have been very impressed with the positive way in which students have shared information and communicated well both in lessons and during prep.

After the presentations there was a debate on the impact of the British Empire. The general consensus reached: The British Empire was not always a “force for good.” Students investigated how the British ravaged many countries for raw materials and often exploited the local populations. Whenever it encountered native resistance it often acted with incredible brutality. Freedom of speech was limited and racism was rife; this helped to contribute to both Apartheid in South Africa and the Transatlantic Slave Trade.

On the other hand, students noted numerous benefits from the legacy of the Empire. Everest noted that “without the British Empire we would not be speaking English now. English is the common world language.” Yi En added, “countries in the Empire benefited from improved transport links such as railways and roads that made the countries wealthier. Also medicinal advancements helped to improve the quality of life.” Eugene agreed and said, ”The Empire was in some ways a good thing because it improved conditions in many countries.” Rico noted that, “many of the sports that we play at ECiM and throughout the region are a by-product of the British Empire. Rugby, Football, Cricket and Badminton all originated from this time and the rules were spread around the globe.”

The British Empire is a contentious issue and the Year 8 students have enjoyed looking at the differing arguments and arriving at interesting interpretations.

 

Mr James Dale
Head of History and Politics


CCA – Aiming High

Co-curricular activities have been in full swing once again this term, with many students trying new CCAs and challenging themselves to step beyond their comfort zone. The students at ECiM work exceptionally hard during their academic lessons every day and boarders continue this effort during Prep time in the boarding houses each evening. Therefore, CCA offers a welcome relief for students; whether that is charging around the rugby pitch; exploring creativity in the arts; or developing skills of social responsibility in one of our community service CCAs. British universities and global employers seek well-rounded young people with leadership, teamwork and interpersonal skills. Such skills are not cultivated through academic study alone, which is why our co-curricular activities are a valued and important part of the ‘Epsom way’.

There have been some notable highlights from CCA this term. The new ‘Baking Club’ has produced some delicious food, including egg-bread and chocolate cupcakes. The martial arts CCAs have been getting students active, including ‘Self-Defence for Girls’, ‘Boxing’, ‘Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu’, ‘Taekwondo’ and ‘Fencing’. The sports department, as ever, offer the students a diverse programme of sports, from Swimming to Volleyball, Hockey, Athletics, Netball, Rugby, Cricket and many more. In addition, the Music and Drama departments have been working hard in CCA to get the Junior Production ready – so watch this space! Last week, students in ‘DIY Charity CCA’ made Valentine’s Day cards for a local home for the elderly, which were much appreciated by the residents in Seremban.  Demonstrating fantastic teamwork and community spirit, ‘Gardening CCA’ has gone from strength to strength, with students growing their own vegetables – surely a skill for life!

Here are some photos showing CCA in action.

Keeping a steady hand… these students have been fine tuning their motor skills in ‘Archery CCA’. Their coach, Nurul, has been so impressed with the attitude and improvement of the students in recent weeks. Well done to all involved!

These boys have been working hard to cultivate a whole array of seeds, plants and vegetables. The gardening patches surrounding Granville Green are looking fantastic – worth a look!

Students looking fierce in ‘Self Defence for Girls’ with our coaches Vladimir and Benny. The girls have been learning about strengthening their core muscles, improving their base endurance fitness, as well as how to protect themselves in combat.

Ms Olivia Archibald
CCA Co-ordinator


Burying Memories for the Future

As part of a cultural project within their English lessons, a number of Key Stage 3 pupils spent a memorable morning digging up the school grounds to bury their very own ‘Time Capsules’ this week. For the capsules, pupils wrote letters to their future selves describing their world today and predicting how it was likely to evolve several years in the future. They added items that represented special memories and the capsules were complete! Twenty minutes with a shovel and a smile, and they were buried, waiting to be opened in the future… 

The Key Stage 3 pupils couldn’t have been more thrilled; it’s safe to say this wasn’t the most conventional Wednesday morning at school!

Here’s what the pupils had to say: 

“I made a time capsule as part of an English homework project. I enjoyed this as it allowed us to learn more about each other because we were asked to put special things inside our own capsules. I put my favorite toys inside (some from when I was very young). I included my own hand-made toy train and my precious lego, as these remind me of fond memories from the past. I think that in several year’s time the culture might change slightly. We may see things like auto driving cars or global warming.”  – Benjamin

“I enjoyed this project because it was very exciting putting items that you love into a box that you will open many years later. I also enjoyed this time capsule project because it was extremely fun and very exciting to dig a hole and bury them. I think when I dig my time capsule up in the future, culture will be completely different. It will be different because technology may have taken over the world. I put quite a few things inside my time capsule: my white Jujitsu belt, my favorite Goosebumps book, a picture of me and my grandfather, a 2018 World Cup figure, and a Capoeira shirt. I put these items inside my time capsule because they are special to me and I want to remember my love for all the things that are inside when I grow up.” – Luca

“I enjoyed this time capsule project because I made a time capsule for the first time and thought about how I might  feel when I dig it up in the future. Inside the capsule, I put a toy dragon, my name tag that I used in year two, a Mcdonald’s toy, a fidgetspinner and a Lego plane. I think when I dig it up there will be many changes: there could be some more buildings around Epsom College and I can imagine there will be more diverse restaurants in Mercato.” – Alex

“What I enjoyed most about this project was the conversation we had with our future selves. This was interesting and exciting, as I know I will get the chance to communicate to myself from the past, which is almost like time-travelling! It was so much fun, and different to other lessons because we got to go outside and play in the dirt, which was surprisingly fun. – Avelino

Ms Katie Hargreaves
Key Stage 3 Co-ordinator

Key Stage 4 Update

It has been a busy start to the term for our Key Stage 4 students with Year 11 trial exams and other events happening throughout the school. The Year 11 cohort put lots of time and effort into doing their best and in doing so will have learned some valuable lessons for the forthcoming exams in May and June. The Year 11 students were presented with awards for most improved grades and highest grades attained in a recent assembly to celebrate some individual success and dedication.

 

It is a particularly important time for our Year 11 and Year 9 students in the selection of subject choices for A-Level and iGCSE respectively. Students will need to take their time to think carefully about what they are going to study next year. To help them deliberate there will be an Options Fair on Wednesday 26th February.  Students will receive further information about their prospective courses which will allow them to make an informed decision when ‘crunch time’ arrives.

In PSHE lessons, Year 10 students have been tackling important topics, such as discrimination,  and have shown great maturity in their ability to discuss some of the real-life issues that our modern world faces today. This tied in with the assembly for Martin Luther King Day, where Year 10 were given time to reflect on the history of discrimination and its impact within the context of a great civil rights campaigner and leader. PSHE is proving to be an extremely valuable period of the week that allows for this discussion, reflection and mindfulness.

Mr Francis McGinty
Key Stage 4 Co-ordinator


Open Mic Night

On Friday February 14th we held the 2nd Annual ‘Open Mic’ Night featuring a number of solos, duets and bands performing love themed songs for Valentine’s Day.

The concert was held on the stage of the Duke of York Theatre with the audience snuggly packed onto the theatre stage around the performers. Almost 200 students, staff and parents turned up to see their friends, classmates and teachers perform.

The highlight of the evening was hearing original songs being performed by the students; Jordy and Afiq performed an original song You written by Jordy and this was later followed by Redza singing his own song Medication.

As the presenters, Afiq and Redza, explained at the start of the evening, the bands were battling it out for “street cred” and chocolate in the Battle of the Bands. This competition has become a popular part of the ‘Open Mic’ Night and this year five bands performed to earn the chocolate and bragging rights.

The prize for best band was awarded to K.A.T. who were made up of Kheng Hon, Afiq and Timothy. They performed a lively rendition of Locked out of Heaven by Bruno Mars. A special mention went to the youngest band, “No Name”, who performed Maroon 5’s recent hit Memories. This band practices every week in Rock Band CCA and has made amazing progress. Made up of students from Year 7 and 8, they showed excellent stage presence, ensemble playing and balance. “No Name” are Duchan, Matthew, Ali, Finley, Avelino, Danni and Allen.

It wasn’t just students taking part in the event; PE Coach Muhammad Amirul Hakim shook off his nerves to give an engaging peformance of Goodbye My Lover by James Blunt. The night ended with two songs from the Staff Band with singing led by Miss Archibald and Mr Shashi.

Special thanks to Mr Shashi and the Sodexo team for helping turn the stage into an intimate club venue for the evening by bringing in sofas, beanbags, rugs and hanging dim lighting. This created an informal and comfortable atmosphere that put the performers totally at ease

Mr Russell Crann
Director of  Music 


Meet the New Year 2 Class Teacher – Mrs Alice Stokes

Why did you choose to work at ECiM?
We had decided, as a family, that we wanted our next adventure to be in South-East Asia and Epsom College ticked all the boxes for the type of school I wanted to teach in and also the type of school that I wanted my children to be educated in.

What is your opinion of ECIM so far?
I have found the school to be warm and welcoming. My colleagues in the Prep School are a tight unit that work well together and support each other without any hesitation. I like that the children have so much fun in their learning and, to be honest, the teachers have their fair share of fun too!

Why did you decide to become a primary school teacher?
My Mother was a Deputy Head and my father a Headmaster, my Grandmother was a teacher and three of my siblings are teachers – it’s part of my genetic make-up! It is an honour to teach children and to see the world through their eyes. It’s a joy to harness their passion and to help them discover everything our beautiful planet has to offer them.

What are the main challenges faced by primary school teachers?
I think the main challenges are that we teach such a breadth of subjects, to such a diverse group of children, each with their own needs. I feel fortunate that at Epsom we have such a great team of specialists to help us out.

What is the best part of the job?
Definitely the immense satisfaction on a child’s face when they have grasped a new concept or made a meaningful connection or leap in their learning journey.

What made you laugh out loud recently?
I laugh a lot, children are hilarious. Recently a child asked me if I had lost my (very blonde) eyebrows! Actually, I’m still laughing at that one.

Mrs Alice Stokes
Year 2 Class Teacher


Carr House Update

We were treated to a wonderful display of the College’s musical talents on Friday 14th February. It was heartening to see so many of the boys from Carr House taking to the stage. Faizi did a fantastic job on lead violin for a mixed Year 9 and Year 10 group. The highlight though was the band “No Name” which was comprised of no less than four Carr boys with Duchan and Matthew on Vocals, Avelino on keys and Allen on drums. We were all delighted when they were awarded the prize for “Most Improved Band”. 

One of our core values here at Epsom is “Selflessness”. We encourage our pupils to look beyond their own goals and to find ways they can contribute to the community. The new Carr House Service CCA this term has seen many of the boys doing just that. Thus far the pupils have baked cookies for key College staff, made treats for the boys and planned some interesting interior design projects to improve the Carr House environment.

Trekking uphill, in the high humidity may not be every young boy’s idea of fun but the Carr House boys approached our recent two hour jungle trek with their usual enthusiasm. There were few complaints and all the boys had a great time. Broga Hill is a local beauty spot with beautiful views of the surrounding Malaysian countryside and the vistas at the top were a rich reward for those boys who managed to make it to the third peak. Experiencing the outdoors is so valuable, not least for our mental and physical health and wellbeing, yet it seems to be less common in our technologically obsessed age. I hope that this will help to spark an enthusiasm for the outdoors in the boys.  

Mr Mark Loveday
Carr Housemaster


Crawfurd House Update

‘Acts of Service’ is a theme which we place great emphasis upon in Crawfurd House. This can range from small scale local acts of service such as ensuring communal spaces are left tidy or making a cup of tea for the tutor on duty to larger acts of self sacrifice or charity work. Each year students apply to be on our House Service Committee which will then select three possible charities for the House to vote on. This year the popular choice, after an impassioned presentation by Rie, is ‘Trash Hero’. This organisation mobilises thousands of people around the world to take action on waste in their communities, change their everyday behaviour and reduce their dependence on single use plastic. This combination of awareness raising and fundraising is ideal for developing an outward look in our students. This term, the Service Committee organised a chocolate brownie delivery service for Valentine’s Day with all the profit going toward this chosen charity. The Sixth Formers leading this committee, Jing Yee and Rie, experimented to create the perfect ‘cost to taste’ ratio and began to take in orders supported by the rest of the girls working to raise awareness of this enterprise.

By Wednesday night, the team were somewhat shocked to discover they had taken over 200 orders and all 55 girls very quickly became part of a highly efficient production line to cook, cool, cut, wrap and add a message to each order. The buzz of excitement (and possibly panic) in the House created a really excellent atmosphere and it was great to see all year groups pulling together effectively for a common, selfless goal.

As if this wasn’t enough to fit in around their academic studies, our House International Committee got in on the fundraising with a celebration of Malaysian culture through the selling of Milo and Syrup Bandung Ice Pops.

We will be continuing to fundraise and run awareness events for Trash Hero throughout the academic year so watch this space for our total amount. I would like to acknowledge the leadership, hard work and dedication shown by many of our girls over the last week. In particular, congratulations to Jing Yee for her effective leadership and extraordinary level of commitment.

Mrs Sophie Hill
Crawfurd Housemistress


Granville House Update

Year 13s:

The year is rapidly passing us by and for the Year 13s they have their eyes fixed firmly on the prize of the final exam results. However, there is still a lot of hard work to be done. We have been discussing life after Epsom over the past week, where they could end up studying, what they will be studying and how they are going to adapt to university life and possibly having to feed themselves…!

Between them they are applying to a wide range of universities and course in different countries. Most are looking at the UK, however the USA, Japan, Hong Kong and Malaysia are also possible destinations from their applications.

I am always impressed with the discipline and effort of these boys who work independently and act as such positive role models for the rest of the boys in Granville. There have been applications, off site entrance tests, Skype interviews into the night, practice interviews at all hours and interviews in KL or overseas. All of this has been managed whilst still keeping on top of their daily workload and responsibilities.

 

They have also been looking at managing themselves at university with a collection of sessions in PSHE to help develop or improve some key life skills. We also had the first ever great Granville ‘Pizza Off’ at the weekend. From scratch the boys made the dough, added their choice of topping and cooked the pizzas. Kheng Hon won on creativity, but Husin’s won on taste. They enjoyed eating them, Redza’s pizza disappeared before the photo was even taken! 

Student Voice in house:

Giving the boys a forum to discuss all aspects of their college life, from academics to food and all other areas of boarding, is a really important part of life at ECiM and in Granville. It is one we are constantly working on further improving. In the house we have a range of meetings on rotation including prefects, family and House council. These all offer a forum for the boys to identify any issues, concerns or positives and things they are really enjoying/benefiting from. In the recent family meetings we discussed the use of tutor time and food in the school. The boys discussed this in a very constructive way, identifying strengths and areas they would like to see change or develop.

Open Mic

The Open Mic night last Friday was a really great event and one we saw a lot of talent from across the school, but also some real involvement from Granville. With Redza and Afiq acting as hosts for the event, they led the way from the front. There was also key involvement in a variety of performances and bands from others in the house. The wide array of skills the boys can show is fantastic and events like this really offer a chance for all to enjoy and it was great to see Arata, Kheng Hon, Avery, Timothy and Afiq all performing.

  

Frangas Non Flectes

Mr John Foden
Granville Housemaster


Sporting Excellence at ECiM

MSSD (District) Athletics

Aisha, Finley, Salar and Hugo all represented the College at the MSSD (District) athletics meeting. It was fantastic to see these pupils competing against athletes from International and Government Schools from all districts in Negeri Sembilan. Each of them was a credit to the College. 

Both Aisha and Hugo performed well enough in their field to be selected to participate in the forthcoming MSSNS (State of Negeri Sembilan) athletics meeting later this week. We will keep you updated via the Sports Department Twitter page @SportsECiM.  

Results:

Aisha – 3km U18 Girls’ 2nd place

Aisha – 1500m U15 Girls’ 1st place

Aisha – 800m U15 Girls’ 1st place

Finley – 3km U18 Boys’ 6th place

Salar – 200m U18 Boys’ 7th place

Hugo – 200m U15 Boys’ 2nd place

Hugo – High Jump U15 Boys’ 2nd place

MSSNS (State of Negeri Sembilan) Cross Country

After winning the MSSD (District) Cross Country event earlier in the month, Aisha was selected to represent the state of Negeri Sembilan in the U15 Girls’ MSSNS Cross Country competition. This race consisted of the pupils with the fastest times across all the Districts in Negeri Sembilan. Aisha ran fantastically and finished in third place.  

Aisha has now been selected to represent ECiM and Negeri Sembilan at the MSSM (Malaysia – National) Cross Country competition later in the school year. This is a fantastic achievement and we wish Aisha the very best of luck for her race.

Fencing

Ashley continues to impress in the sport of Fencing and travelled to Manchester in England for another prestigious tournament back in January. Ashley, who was recently crowned the highest ranked foreigner in the U17 category in the UK, performed exceptionally and won two bronze medals in both Foil and Epee. This is a fantastic achievement as Ashley is still only fourteen years old. It goes without saying that Ashley has a very bright future in Fencing and we forward to tracking her progression in this highly competitive sport.

Chess

Darshinie joined over fifty pupils at the MSSD Chess competition earlier in February. This was a two day competition where pupils from Government and International Schools from throughout Seremban met to compete. Darshine was undefeated throughout the entire competition and was crowned the U15 Champion for 2020. Darshinie will now represent Negeri Sembilan in the MSSNS Chess competition later in February.

Mr Daniel Jeffries
Director of Sport


OE London Dinner 2020

On Saturday 15th February, forty six Old Epsomians gathered together for the largest OE Dinner to date. Students travelled from as far away as Ireland, and from across England, to attend.

Unfortunately this year, Epsom College UK was unable to host the event, but that did not stop us. As in previous years, everyone met in Holborn: a central point for many of those at universities in London, as well as offering easy access to the main London railway stations. From there, everyone walked down to the Spanish restaurant in Covent Garden, for a meal of tapas, including Spanish classics, such as chorizo, gambas al ajillo (prawns in garlic and chilli), tortilla (Spanish omelette), calamares (crispy squid) and chicken and seafood paella, especially prepared for us.

It was fantastic to see so many OEs gather together and greet each other for the first time in a few months or even a few years in some cases. There was so much to catch up on and so much to reminisce about.

With many of the 2016 cohort having graduated from university last summer, there are not many left in the UK, so there was only one OE from that year group. It is clearly now time for more OE events in Malaysia, so those OEs need to watch this space.

An impressive 14 students from the 2017 cohort attended, including the three students who are currently studying for Medicine in Ireland, as well as 100% attendance for one whole tutor group (impressive!). 9 students from the 2018 cohort came along, as did 22 from the most recent batch of OEs, who left last summer. It was lovely to hear about how well all of them are getting on at their respective universities and in their respective cities.

The 2017 cohort were keen to discuss their plans for the year(s) ahead after graduation with many looking to apply to go onto postgraduate studies, while others are planning on coming back to Malaysia to begin their careers, especially those who are coming  back to work with Bank Negara. There was so little time to catch up with everyone and over all their news: we needed more than one evening to do it all.

The special guest this year was John Mann, former Head of Music and Assistant Housemaster in Granville. Obviously, the Granville boys were particularly excited to see him, but many wanted to discuss their musical exploits since leaving.

With every year that passes, the community of Old Epsomians grows in number. It was brilliant to have so many OEs attending the dinner this year. I suspect that the dinner cannot continue to grow, with students graduating and returning to their home countries or moving on elsewhere. However, with some students continuing with postgraduate studies and others potentially settling in the UK, I do hope that it can continue to grow for a little while longer. However, it is definitely time for the calendar of OE events to expand further. It does offer a valuable opportunity for OEs to reminisce and catch-up. However, it also offers key networking opportunities for students to network with like-minded individuals who might be on the lookout for new jobs or employees.

As well as increasing the calendar of events for OEs, we also hope to expand the information from OEs, beyond the current OE Club Facebook page, with an annual newsletter that celebrates all the successes of the OE community.

We thank everyone for making the effort to attend this year’s dinner, as well as wishing good luck to all of the 2017 cohort who are taking their final exams in just a few months’ time.

Mr Jon Barker
Assistant Head (Sixth Form)


Engineering Workshop

At ECiM we are keen to embrace every opportunity to stretch and challenge our learners thus we were delighted to accept an invitation to an Engineering Workshop where pupils had to apply their prior learning in a completely new context.

8 pupils were invited to take part in this innovative and demanding event. The experience was most enlightening and we are hugely grateful to the Malaysian Oxbridge Alumni Network and the IET Malaysia Local Network for their hard work in providing us with this opportunity.

The Engineering workshop represented a huge challenge. Our first challenge started from the moment we arrived when we were divided into 8 groups with nine complete strangers. When we first sat in our group, we felt a little awkward but after 6 arduous hours of working extremely hard as a team, I can confidently say that we had become good friends!

Our task was to craft a boat that could reach the other end of the pond with as much cargo as possible using two motors that would only work when programmed correctly. This was definitely the hardest part of the task. As I volunteered for the programming part, I shouldered a heavy burden of responsibility. I cannot count how many times I thought I “failed” with the programming but what kept me on track was the help from my teammates and the support of the IET staff.

When our motor began to work, everyone in my team danced and clapped with radiant smiles on their faces. Little did we know that the biggest challenge was yet to come. Luckily, our group managed to get  the motors to work but there was an unexpected accident where the cable of the circuit melted due to defective components just before our moment of glory when we were about to launch our boat! We did not just give up but continued working on adding the safety features to the boat, believing that the circuit could be fixed. Finally – thanks to the help, once again of the IET Staff, we repaired the fault, floated our boat and went on to win the overall prize.

I learned so much from the task-including the value of cooperation. I admit that I have always preferred individual tasks to group tasks. I have always had a tendency to distrust the quality of other people’s work. However, through this task I realized that I have to change. In this particular boat-building task, the delegation was extremely important; while I was busy coding for the motor, others worked on crafting an unsinkable ship that could carry more than 1.5kg, and the rest were connecting the circuits to the right components (something I am really bad at). The prize was won thanks to the team cooperation and delegation of work, not just an effort from a single person.

This experience taught me the true value of cooperation and how to work as a group and so much more. I will cherish this memory forever because it did open up a bigger world for me.

Na Young
Year 12 Student