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The Newsletter of Harrow International School Bangkok


Volume 22 Issue 9

14th March 2019










Designer Nitipun Sorat Editor Richard Green Advertising Queries Ceren Marshall

This magazine is printed on recycled paper



Dear Parents Welcome to the Expedition Week edition of The Harrovian. I was thrilled to see the range of expeditions undertaken across the school, and the variety of experiences our students get to enjoy. Achievement in the classroom and excellent examination results are probably the single most important success criteria for any school, because results open doors to the very best universities and employers. Great schools like ours do that and more. Here at Harrow Bangkok we believe that success in life will not be determined by examination grades alone. Our Leadership in Action programme, of which Expedition Week forms a key part, helps our students to develop those all-important ‘soft skills’ and attributes, which employers value. Expeditions take our students away from the unquestioned certainties of home, out of their comfort zones in safe yet challenging environments. Expedition week gives opportunities for students to develop in all the six key Leadership Attributes. A huge amount of hard work goes into preparing and staffing this week, and I would like to praise and thank all my staff for their valuable contributions.

Jon Standen Head Master



Head of Lower School Is it really only 2 weeks since the half term break? So much has happened this term already. First of all, thank you to Ms Costa, Mrs Bell and the LS English team for organising such a stimulating Book Week last week. If your child did not love reading already, there is no way they could fail to have been inspired last week. There will be more about Book Week in the next issue. In a busy few days back, we have also had an exciting Junior Sports Day and an awe-inspiring Year 5 Formula 1 for Schools Day. This issue of the Harrovian focuses mainly on our recent Expedition Week. At Harrow Bangkok, we place great emphasis on developing well-rounded students who, while successful academically, also have a range of skills and attributes that will enable them to enjoy and be successful in their later lives. A lot is done within the classroom environment, but there is no substitute for actual experience in the real world. Lower School Expeditions, while carefully planned to be age-appropriate and safe, make sure that all students face a range of challenges and ensure that our young Harrovians are developing strong friendships and bonds. While our students may know their classmates and teachers well from day-to-day contact in school, the experience of staying with each other on a residential trip adds a completely new dimension. This short few days in February where our Year 1 to Year 5 students slept away from home will have developed in our young Harrovians interpersonal skills, such as leadership, teamwork, trust and respect in a powerful and fun way. Our Lower School students will have some wonderful lifelong memories too! Coming up‌ Coming up this term our younger choirs in Pre Prep perform their Singalong Showcase on 20 March after school and students in Year 4 and Year 5 share their talents at their Mini Concerts on Friday 22 March and 29 March respectively. Next week our Lower School Maths team are hosting a FOBISIA conference for teacher delegates from schools across South East Asia where we will share some of the strategies that have made maths outcomes so strong in the EYC and Pre Prep. See you at the Benefit Bash this Friday! Nicholas Prockter Head of Lower School





Day Year group results On 28th February, Year 3, 4 and 5 took part in their Junior Sports Day. An array of colours filled the field and the students were ready to showcase their throwing, jumping and running skills.

Year 3:

1st = Byron

Year 4:

1st = Suriyothai 2nd = Churchill

Year 5:

1st = Sonakul

2nd = Nehru 2nd = Keller

All students took part in a carousel of field activities followed by track events. It was wonderful to see the students trying their best for both themselves and their House. There were some excellent performances and lovely shows of sportsmanship. Well done to all students and a big ‘thank you’ to all PE and Lower School staff for their help. After lots of calculations, Sonakul were victorious, followed by Suriyothai and then Byron. Emily Aston Teacher LS



Siam Ocean


As part of our topic, Under the Sea, Year 2 went on a visit to Siam Ocean World. The children enjoyed the exciting opportunity to observe many different sea creatures in their habitats. They saw lots of animals such as turtles, sharks, clownfish, stingrays and even sea snakes! The highlight of the trip was eating lunch in front of a giant tank where the children could watch amazing fish and sharks as they ate. It was a fantastic day! Louise Cove Year 2 Year Group Leader





Head of Upper School This is my favourite issue of the Harrovian each year as it gives us an opportunity to share with you the wonderful things students have done on their expeditions. Expeditions give our students the opportunity to develop character and gives us unique insights into how our students will react when things don’t go their way. I had the pleasure of visiting 2 expeditions this year, the Year 12 ski trip to Naeba, Japan and the Year 6 trip to Rayong. If you ever want to see the best example of students and staff facing challenges with determination, watch them learn to ski or snowboard. I watched students fall and fall and fall again, each time learning from it and improving along the way. Even Mr Dodds must

have fallen 412 times! I have been snowboarding for many years and I still remember the pain, emotions and frustration that come with learning in this sport. I got to spend most of the trip with two of our best snowboarders, Perry (S12) and Minnie (K12) and enjoyed learning from their technique. The worst thing that you can do when you become proficient at anything is to rest on your laurels and thankfully we had an instructor who pushed us to our limits. The photo with this article shows how I was pushed to my limits resulting in a head over heels tumble down a black slope in waist deep powder snow. More than anything else, expeditions allow our students to build resilience and teach them the importance of failure in learning. The best learning happens when we go through repeated cycles of failure and improvement. Failure should be encouraged as an important part of the learning process. Jonny Liddell Head of Upper School

SR5 Maesot Trip Over half term, we visited the Champion school Maesot and helped to build adobe walls, a mushroom house and new gardens, in addition to painting murals, painting houses, teaching lessons, moving soil, planting edible plants and undertaking a huge Big Read. After two days of hard work, we had moved an astonishing total of 2 tonnes of soil and helped to create fantastic new facilities. I was challenged both physically and mentally; this trip was tiring but a very rewarding one. Another place that we visited during the trip was the garbage dump community which houses over 500 Burmese immigrants. We learnt about what it is like for people to be displaced from their home country due to discrimination and dominance of a major ethnic group of people. This really made me reflect on the hardships people face and how people’s mindset can eventually lead to conflict. To me this is unacceptable. I reflected on how fortunate I am to be able to have three actual meals a day and I commit to minimising my wastage of food. This trip has made me realise something very important: a trip that is memorable is not always about how beautiful the scenery is or how good the food tastes, but how the trip actually changed you as a person. Undeniably, this trip had changed me to be a better version of myself. Focus Asavadramronggrid B11



Upper School University Talk

Last week, we were delighted to welcome admissions representatives from four top US public universities to speak with our parent community. The very interactive talk consisted of two parts, the first part exploring the methodology behind different league table and how they can be used in an informed way when considering different universities. The universities highlighted the different criteria used by different league tables and stressed the importance of families identifying what specific factors are priorities for them in their decision making. The talk then moved on to look at the emotional and well-being support available to students at university. With research highlighting the direct correlation between student mental health and GPA success, this is an important topic to discuss. We would like to thank Indiana University, University of Minnesota, Rutgers University and the University of Iowa for delivering such an engaging and dynamic workshop for our parents. Amanda Poel Head of Careers and University Guidance



Geo Jewellery by


Art Deco

Year 8 students have been working very hard and have worked with a variety of materials during their project where they made a jewellery piece or key chain. They have learnt to work with oak, veneer and acrylic to produce a final product using different inspirations from the design movement art deco. All students have been using many of the tools and equipment in the design and technology workshop, to develop their practical and problem-solving skills. A particular piece of equipment that has just been introduced to the students this term is our new polishing machine, which has enabled the students to complete their work to a very high-quality finish. I have been extremely proud of the students on what they have produced both in their design and practical work, but in particular, I am amazed at how their confidence and independence continues to improve more and more in design and technology. Karri Nicholson Teacher US

Knowing how to improve

Whilst most Harrow Bangkok students embarked on expeditions, spare a thought for our Fifth Form (Year 11) students who remained in school for their mock examination week. Whilst it could be said that mock examinations are not considered ‘fun’ for our students they do provide an important stepping stone towards the real IGCSE examinations and experiencing as close to what that will feel like. The focus for our students is as much on the process as the outcomes of this series of examinations and most importantly what they can take forward in their learning. I strongly encourage students to take on board the feedback from their teachers over the coming weeks and ensure have a clear idea of how they can improve. The mature way that our Fifth Form students approached their mock examinations fills me with confidence that we have a very capable group of students who are determined to succeed this summer. David Foster Director of Studies



F1in Schools

February saw the return of our annual Formula 1 in Schools STEM challenge which brought together all Year 5 and Year 7 students for two days of highly competitive designing, manufacturing and racing. Mr Sands, our Head of Creative and Performing Arts, introduced the competition before designers got to work creating their team name, car name and brand whilst the team manager worked with manufacturing engineers to decide which car should be selected for the team event. Students also worked very hard to see who could produce the fastest car to represent their team during a series of exciting qualifying stages. Knock out rounds were held in the afternoon, and teams raced against each other to reduce the field from 16 teams before heading to the finals. Both race days were fast paced, action packed, highly competitive and with the kind of drive you are likely to see on a real Formula 1 race day. Both days finished with an awards ceremony for our top three teams. My sincere thanks to all those who took part and congratulations to our winners. Paul Handley Head of Design Technology



SEASAC Senior Swimming Championships 2019 Hosted by Ruamrudee International School Bangkok RIS

“Good job team! Well done and great effort!” This is what I told our team after two days of competition at SEASAC Senior. The result was positive but even better than this, was the teamwork and team feeling reached during the swim meet. For the first time in SEASAC Swimming, we had competitors in all the relays event which shows the strength of the Harrow Bangkok swim team.

If as a team we did well, it was individually where we pushed for more medals and podium positions. This was achieved in the 50m free by Ajay Watanakun (25.21 seconds) and secured a well-deserved Bronze medal which was a fantastic achievement. Special mention as well to Ray Sangarayakul, Nicky Pisalyaput, Joey Watanakun and Aaric Timms for making diverse finals and gaining top 10 finishes. Coach Hollie (Head of Development Swimming) and I couldn’t have been prouder of Mind Tungsub, Inger Ma, Yacht Sanyawut and Ray Supornsahusrungsi for giving their best effort throughout the hardest meet of the year and achieving personal best times during the competition. Go Lions! David Escolar Ballesteros Head of Elite Swimming

SEASAC Tennis 2019 The British School of Jakarta hosted their first SEASAC Division One tennis competition; a heavily anticipated competition after being promoted from Division Two in both boys’ and girls’ categories. It was a nervous start for the boys playing UWCE but they managed to shake off the nerves to win 3-2 in the opening round. UWCD boys, who were last year’s champions, proved too strong in depth for us as we succumbed to a 4-1 defeat and 3-2 defeat to CDNIS. The boys cruised past relegated Tanglin Trust school 4-1 in the plate semi-final and a repeat 3-2 victory over UWCE again in the plate final securing a 5th place finish. The girls played UWCE in their first match, narrowly losing 3-2. Hosts BISJ proved too strong as we lost 5-0 and then a 4-1 defeat to defending champions BPS. The girls were more relaxed after the group stages and played their best tennis in the plate semi-final and finals stage by beating GIS and UWCE 5-0 to secure 5th place for the tournament. It was a great test of courage and valuable experience gained for our young team for the future.


Final Positions: 1 CDNIS BPS 2 UWCD NIST 3 BPS UWCD 4 BSJ BSJ 5 HIS HIS 6 UWCE UWCE 7 NIST GISKL 8 TTS RIS Boys Team: Pham (cpt), Jerry, Prom, Kong, Pete, Ken, Win, Kan Kan. Girls Team: TT, Serene (cpt), Khowpoon, Taisja, Asia, Ellie, Proud. MVP awards: Girls: TT who was outstanding throughout the tournament losing only one match. Boys: Jerry who showed great endurance, courage and competitive spirit. Coach Danai Head of Tennis


Harrow Ocean Warriors As a result of student creativity and hard work, the Harrow Ocean Warriors group managed to raise funds by selling both bamboo straws and their HOW Calendar. The artistic contributions to the calendar from Lower and Upper School were outstanding and the resulting calendar, a very professional and thought-provoking product. Thank you to all those of you who contributed to it and bought it. Watch this space in Term 1 for next year’s competition. With the funds raised, Year 2 Harrow Ocean Warriors presented 20,000 baht to the Sattahip Turtle Rehabilitation Centre and Sanctuary during expedition week. This money goes towards providing the care and facilities required for the turtles to live, mend and breed before they are released back into the wild. Thank you to all this year’s Harrow Ocean Warriors for their commitment to raising the issue of plastic pollution and strategies to combat it. Look out for next year’s Harrow Ocean Warriors beach clean up trips too. Kathryn Gavin Head of SR5

Keller Legends: A family of Legends As promised, in this edition of the ‘Keller Legends’ I would like to recognise one of the great sibling combinations within Keller House: Jack and Alyssa Hughes. Alyssa (K6) has only just joined the Upper School and is already making her mark. She has excelled in cross country, has one of the highest Attitude to Learning grades in Keller and she has built up an incredibly impressive tally of House Points. She is shaping up to be a Keller Legend in every sense. Jack (K9) has already proven himself to be a performer of significant potential. Whether it be singing or acting, it is a genuine pleasure to watch this man on stage; the House Music and Theatre Sports could be in very safe hands. Please watch out for him in the school play: Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. Outside of school, it has also been a great delight to hear about the charity work they have been involved in locally in the Tung Song Hong Community Centre under the mentorship of the Friends of Harrow. This is all in their own time under their own merits. Well done, Jack and Alyssa. You are true Keller Legends. Richard Downs Head of Keller House



Prep House Scrabble Competition

With many House sporting events contested this year already, it was time for the ‘brainiacs’ to flex their mind muscles in the Prep House Scrabble Competition. The pupils’ use of English was put to the test with some unique words spelt on the boards using tricky sets of letters. There were also some very questionable additions and the call of ‘challenge!’ could often be heard with the resident wordsmith, Dr Sheppard, having to make some game-changing word decisions. Overall, the students clearly showed their talents as second language speakers and should be proud of their performances. It was a very close competition, particularly in the final between Keller and Sonakul but there can only be one winner. Despite Sonakul’s best efforts, Keller were victorious in the final and the overall winners. Congratulations to them and to all the students that took part and demonstrated a great House spirit. James O’Connell Sonakul Prep House Leader

Prep House Softball The Prep House Softball Competition was a fiercely contested event with some outstanding teamwork from all six Houses. The batting skill level throughout the competition was superb, with some fabulous individual fielding skills displayed throughout the day. It was Byron House who were the deserved Prep Softball Champions for 2019 after B6, B7 and B8 all reached the final of their tournament. Well done Byron House! Dan Wiseman Keller Prep House Leader



SEASAC MUN Over the course of the three days, I was given the incredible opportunity to run the SEASAC MUN conference alongside the secretariat, comprising of Finn N12, Ruby So12 and Logic So12. We were fortunate to have Khun Mechai Viravaidya present as our guest speaker during our opening ceremony. During the MUN event I was able to work with other pragmatic, determined young minds from the international community of South East Asia. Overall we saw 10 schools with over 170 participants, covering 6 countries all merging together to engage in fruitful debate. The nature of MUN is to emulate the United Nations, where we formulate resolutions to achieve peace. Together, we fostered a universal passion for peace, actively listening to others and gaining a more holistic perspective on key issues that plague our world. Gwen Needham S11

Safeguarding Taskforce Training All members of the Harrow Safeguarding Taskforce attended Level 3 Safeguarding Training recently. The training was delivered at Bangkok Prep by Chris Gould, a renowned expert in international safeguarding. Aside from receiving the training, delegates also got to network with their counterparts in other schools and to strengthen the bonds between the various safeguarding leads across Bangkok international schools. Dr Tim Jefferis Second Master





EYC Expedition It has been very quiet at school this week while everyone has been on Expedition but don’t worry the students of the EYC haven’t missed out on all the fun – we just brought the fun to us instead! This week it has been Parent’s Week in Reception. The parents in each class were invited to come into school and lead an activity of their choice with their child’s class. The children have been busy making ice cream, creating snow globes, arranging flowers, concocting slime, mixing jelly, decorating balloons and much, much more. There was even a visit from a real Thai Airways pilot and a wonderful police dog demonstration! An enormous THANK YOU must go to all the parents that have joined us this week – the children have had a fantastic time and learnt so much! We have really appreciated your support and enthusiasm. Nursery didn’t want to miss out either, so they arranged their own ‘mini-expeditions’. Their visit to the science labs to visit the resident fish, lizard and hedgehog linked perfectly with their current Pets topic. They even went on a lion hunt to find the Harrow lion… I wonder where that naughty lion was hiding this time?! After all the excitement we were definitely ready for half term! Kate Umpleby Head of Early Years Phase



Year 1 Sleepover

Thanks to all the staff involved, who helped to give the Year 1 students an exciting and safe sleepover experience.

Our Year 1 Expedition Sleepover is a big one – as it is some children’s very first experience sleeping away from home! Since the beginning of Year 1, the children had been excitedly counting down... and they arrived on Thursday to finally find their classrooms emptied of furniture and ready for them to spread out their cosy beds!

A special well done to all of the Year 1 students, who impressed the teachers so much with their independence, resilience and demonstration of the iRules throughout the sleepover. Year 1 - we are so proud of you!

The day was action packed; creating ‘The Starry Night’ collage in the art room, making pizzas, decorating cupcakes, practising their circus skills, swimming, showering independently and watching the hilarious magician, Amazing K. By dinner time the children’s energy levels were running low – but they refuelled again by eating the delicious pizzas they had made earlier. After dinner, with torches in hand, they set off on a night walk around campus before heading back to enjoy some bedtime stories, cookies and milk. Tummies full and eyelids drooping, the children brushed their teeth and snuggled down into their beds. On Friday morning the students packed up, got themselves ready and ate a yummy breakfast in the Dining Hall before being picked up by their parents.


Asha Stokes Y1 Sleepover Leader



Since boarding the bus on Thursday morning, Year 2 showed amazing leadership and conservation attributes. Starting at the turtle sanctuary we had an informative presentation by the Navy who were impressed by the children’s knowledge and understanding of the precious sea turtles and surrounding habitat. Following this, they had a quick hello and goodbye to Clara and Rifty the sea turtles which we got to release. Later that afternoon, once in the hotel, the children found out who their room buddies were going to be. We had an amazing early evening on the beach with games, sandcastles, paper crafts on the grass and a cooling dip in the pool. After a delicious buffet dinner followed by ice cream, we all enjoyed the evening activities: Lego, Jenga, turtle making, jellyfish creating and a reading corner. We ended this fabulous evening with a singalong, milk and cookies and an unforgettable story from Mr Godwin and ‘Oscar-winning performances’ from teachers. All staff would agree that the behaviour of the children was impeccable and it was an experience that will stay with them forever. Georgie Cullis Year 2 Expedition Leader




This year’s expedition was all about fun, sun and independence! Again, Year 3 ventured to the wonderfully relaxing and peaceful Fisherman’s Resort, Petchaburi. Whilst there, our days were filled with group activities and plenty of opportunities to play and bond as a year group. Our activities were run by our very own Harrow Bangkok teachers. These included an assault course and team games with Mr Jeffries, a musical seaside themed ICT project with Mrs Jones and Mrs Luna, environmentally sustainable beach crafts with Miss Gift and Miss Trexie, and Bollywood dancing with Miss Rani. As well as these activities, we, of course, made full use of the beach and the resort swimming pool. Both of our days ended with whole year group events: the beach-themed disco, a night walk (which included some peculiar animal guests) and a campfire. The campfire was an opportunity to showcase the Bollywood talents of the staff and the students, to join in with some group singing and finally to be spooked by evening tales.

The expedition was non-stop energy and laughs and I am very proud of all the children who participated in this year’s trip. They behaved brilliantly, looked out for each other and were positive throughout the trip. Thank you to all the staff for their hard work and to the children for being excellent role models for the school. Dan Bush Year 3 Expedition Leader

Harrow Bangkok Expedition week February 2019


YEAR 4 EXPEDITION The Year 4 expedition – revered for being adventurous, action-packed and awesome - once again did not disappoint. We had team games, water rocket building, quizzes, performances, dancing, TWO swimming sessions, TWO jungle walks, stunning views of a waterfall and even a nighttime ‘songtaew safari’. What more could we all ask for in a four day, three night period?! By far the most important and exciting day on the itinerary was Day 2 – Khao Yai National Park. We split into two groups and began our extensive schedule. The children toured the museum; walked to a ‘lookout’ tower by a watering hole; wandered through the dense jungle and gazed down at the beautiful Haew Suwat Waterfall, amongst many other pursuits. We spotted deer, gibbons and some fascinating trees during this period – some cheeky monkey visitors even tried to join us for lunch! After finding out all about the park (and filling up on delicious pizza) we packed into our eleven songtaews and set off, trying to spot Khao Yai’s fascinating fauna with our torches. Year Four’s animal sighting haul for the evening included a family of four elephants (a real highlight) huge porcupines and plenty of deer.

Khao Yai

The Year Four Expedition will certainly be memorable for all those involved. We hope the children enjoyed it as much as we did. Alex Knight Year 4 Expedition Leader



Kanchanaburi After weeks of excitement, questions about the kit lists (no, you won’t need to bring an ice cream maker on expedition...) and deepening our knowledge of World War Two, we finally set off on the most anticipated journey of the year; our expedition to Kanchanaburi. We arrived promptly at our hotel and enjoyed a tasty lunch before launching into the first round of the mighty ninja course. There was little time to get to know our ninja group members before we were crossing rope bridges, paddling boats and climbing through nets in order to beat the other teams.

an eye-opening morning of history, we journeyed by train along the stunning River Kwai to Sai Yok, where our trusty bus drivers were waiting to take us back to the hotel for an afternoon of activities. Our final day gave us the chance to beat our ninja course time and take part in an exciting water adventure; rafting down the peaceful River Kwai. We eagerly put on our life jackets, grabbed our paddles and set off with teachers and instructors for an unforgettable journey. The views of the hills which surrounded us were breathtaking, and we managed to paddle our way to the long-tail boats which brought us safely back to the hotel pier.

The following day, we headed off to the Hellfire Pass Museum. This was an amazing opportunity to venture along the path behind the real story of the ‘Death Railway’, as well as pay our respects to the people who had lost their lives there during WW2. Following such


Tired, happy and having achieved new goals, we set off home the following morning. Many thanks to all of the fantastic staff who made the trip so enjoyable and well done to all of the students for representing Harrow Bangkok with pride. Jessica Armstrong Year 5 Expedition Leader



Sea, sand, snorkelling and sustainability just about sums up the 2019 Year 6 Expedition. Students headed to Rayong for a week of learning about the environment and the effects that human waste is having on our planet. The week began with a beach clean which was an eye-opening experience for all, and truly brought home the scale of the rubbish problem. Following this, we visited the turtle sanctuary to learn about the effects of the rubbish on wildlife, and spent a day at Rayong Botanical Garden and learnt about the importance of plants for our ecosystems. It was a jam-packed week of activities with students being pushed to try new things and make new friends. Water activities were a key component of the trip with snorkelling and kayaking being high up on the list of favourite activities. All students rose to the challenges in front of them and many had the opportunity to try something they had never done before. The trip ended with a night of reflection on what had been learnt and emphasized the need for our students to be Leaders for a better world. Harriet Pilkington Year 6 Expedition Leader



Kaeng Krachan

The Year 7 Expedition 2019 to Kaeng Krachan was an action-packed adventure full of fun challenges and good times. From the first night, the year group was split between the spacious Diamond Land Resort and a beautifully kept site next to the Ranger’s Station at Kaeng Krachan Dam. Students rotated through some fantastic activities, including a musical event on the last night for Valentine’s Day. It was great to see the whole year group smiling and working together throughout a great trip. Many thanks to the cooperation of all students and staff who made Year 7 Expedition 2019 a success. Scott Howe Year 7 Expedition Leader



Chiang Mai

Year 8s congregated at Hualamphong station to board the overnight train for Chiang Mai. In the morning, met by the enthusiastic CMRCA team, we embarked on a series of ice-breakers and so loosened off any train-induced stiffness. Groups then went off around the resort to perform team-based challenges. Having covered several kilometres over the course of the afternoon, and shared many laughs, evening activities began. After a night under canvas, groups headed off to their activities. Some sampled Thai village life, weaving cloth and making a selection of Thai desserts. Others researched and constructed Tyrolean-style bridges. Great fun was had whizzing down the ropes once these were complete. Others trekked around Huay Lan reservoir. Subsequent days were modified due to poor air quality, but we maintained an interesting and varied programme nonetheless. No one complained that the more energetic activities were replaced with periods spent inside in air-conditioned comfort!

The expedition finished with skits and musical performances from the various houses. These were as amusing as ever; particularly memorable, though, was Tatty’s impromptu solo. He captured the spirit of the expedition: stretch yourself, make new friends, remember what’s important in life. Dr Tim Jefferis Year 8 Expedition Leader



Khao Yai

sites, and I believe that all students enjoyed this valuable life experience. In addition to hiking and camping, the expedition also involved cycling and kayaking, which were new activities for many students and they were a credit to themselves in how they handled these new challenges. It was a pleasure to spend time with students on such a rewarding expedition and all Year 9 students should be congratulated on their efforts. Tom Watson Year 9 Expedition Leader

The Year 9 expedition took students to the beautiful Khao Yai and Khao Ito National Parks with plentiful wildlife and stunning landscapes, where, over five gruelling days, they managed to complete both their practice and qualifying adventurous journeys for their Bronze Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award. Two nights spent camping, eight meals planned and prepared, one day kayaking, one day cycling and three days hiking. The students showed great determination and resilience while completing 13km hikes, carrying heavy rucksacks in very hot conditions. They learned many new skills while camping and cooking for themselves and learned a lot about themselves and their teammates. Most also learned that they could live without luxury items for one night if it meant they didn’t have to carry it on their back. The expedition was a great success and although challenging, the students remained cheerful and enthusiastic. There was a great atmosphere throughout the resort and camp-



o a D g n a i h C



Cooking, camping, rafting, caving, home stays and building roads; the Year 10 Chiang Dao trip was a very active time with the additional challenge of experiencing a very unusual feeling in Thailand: being cold. I could reflect on: the amazing effort of pupils and staff of nearly two metres in height making it through the caving experience; the incredible road building efforts; the resilience and determination shown by many in the raft; the way that NJ (So10) graciously accepted his defeat. I, however, want to use the time to express my sincere gratitude to, firstly, the staff. Miss Evans attacked the expeditions with an energy and helpfulness that made the week. Miss Pidgeon was kind, funny and fully committed to everything. Before a job had even been thought of, she had already done it and she is exactly the kind of person you want on any expedition. Mr Sands’ cutting-edge humour dominated throughout, and his caving efforts proved that the Harrovian spirit is very much alive in our staff as well as our pupils. Miss Joseph’s energy and enthusiasm was incredibly infectious and played a large part in setting the relaxed, fun-loving and respectful tone of the trip. Mr Beere was nicknamed ‘Doc’ as he provided the sound and grounding advice throughout. Our lovely Nurse King equally deserves a mention and Jade (C10) summed up all her efforts by his description of her amazing ability to look after much more than just our bodies. Lastly, to the Wild Planet team. Put simply, they were superb. My gratitude, equally, goes to the pupils. Around the school, our principles are clear to see, and the photos of the expedition attached to this article only provide a snapshot of the vast array of Leadership in Action that could be seen. As an example, the best chefs were an inspiration to teamwork and it was with great joy that we observed a highly efficient, effective and productive group cook, clean and converse together. In all - from the rafting to the talent show - the Harrovians did their parents and guardians incredibly proud; it was a great team of fifty-five fantastic folks. Richard Downs Year 10 Expedition Leader



o a D g n a i Ch



For N10, B10 and So10 it was off to the north of Thailand to the Chiang Dao region for a week of intense camping and activities as part of this years expedition week. After flying to Chiang Mai it was a quick transfer onto coaches for an hour and a half followed by another hour and a half in songtaew’s as we made our way to our first camp. Over the 5 days students engaged in trekking, caving, community service and two days rafting whilst camping each night in a different location including a night in the Pak Ka Lam Homestay. No hot water or electricity gave our students a real experience and a chance to see a very different Thailand. A true adventure for all on what is the greatest of Harrow expeditions. Many thanks to our fantastic staff Ms Mitchell, Ms Mahenthrarajah, Mr Machin and Mr Ahmed who all worked tirelessly to provide our students with a wonderful experience. Jeremy Southgate Year 10 Expedition Leader


Y10 Silver D of E

This year’s Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award expedition took students to the beautiful Cuc Phuong National Park, in Northern Vietnam. On the first day, before starting the assessed expedition, students visited the endangered primate and carnivore centre in the national park; they were lucky to see pangolins, one of the most endangered species in the world, as well as visiting the primate rescue and rehabilitation centre. The second day, with all bags packed with all their possessions and food for the next three days, students set off on their 45km hike that would take them from the Cuc Pulong National park, through primary and secondary rainforest to the Pu Luong Valley. Students wild camped on the first night and then stayed in homestays at the beautiful Mu Waterfall on the third night. I’m exceptionally proud of how well the students embraced their challenging hike, cooked all of their meals and kept their sense of humour along the way. Mr Alistair Marshall Year 10 Expedition Leader




This February, we had the opportunity to go to India as part of the Sixth Form Expedition programme. When I heard that we were going to New Delhi, I wasn’t particularly excited about the idea. India has never been on my ‘bucket list’ and so I did not expect much from the trip. However, it turned out to be one of the most memorable expeditions and India is definitely on my travel list from now on! There are many reasons why this trip was so enjoyable. Firstly, there were activities that the Snow Leopard Adventures team had organised for us such as trekking, sightseeing in the small city Rishikesh (famous for yoga and the Beatles!), zip lining across the Ganges river, making roti, and team building games. However, for most of us, the best activity was rafting down the Ganges river. We got the opportunity to raft for two days: on the first day, we rafted for around three hours and on the third day, we got a whole day on the river. While rafting, we got the chance to admire the beautiful scenery and serene atmosphere. The mountains seemed to envelop the river, creating such a majestic scene. We also glimpsed wild animals along the way, such as mountain goats clinging to the sheer rock faces.


While we were rafting, a surprising situation arose when three members of the Snow Leopard Adventures team and a raft of students helped to rescue a cow that had fallen from a small cliff and become trapped. This incident showed just how much everyone cared for their surrounding environment and the wildlife in it. I will never regret choosing to go to India for my final expedition at Harrow Bangkok: I think it is actually the best expedition I have ever been fortunate enough to attend and I only wish that we could have stayed there longer. Matthew Thorogood Sixth Form Expedition Leader



Our trip to Japan was an unforgettable experience that we will all cherish forever. The first few days were tough as we were trying to learn new skills such as riding a snowboard and most importantly learning how to stop them! It was quite challenging yet enjoyable. We were very lucky to get an opportunity to be trained by professional instructors; they were extremely friendly and took good care of us. We faced many obstacles during our practice; the most difficult being having to get yourself back up again after falling down countless times. Other than the fun in the snow, the best parts of the trip were the Japanese food, which lived up to everyone’s expectation, and the exotic views of the countryside. We certainly would love to go back again and hope to be able to stay for a longer period of time.

The first day skiing, we couldn’t even turn and Henry and I crashed into a child! But by the second day we were used to the slopes, could turn and even picked up speed heading down the slope. Each day we progressed up the mountain. By the last day, we were able to ski down a ‘red run’ - a fantastic achievement. The instructor was very friendly and the snow was also really good to play with. Henry even made his first ever snow angel! On the last day we were able to try some Japanese cultural activities and I took part in the happy bell painting. I will definitely go skiing again in the future - it is a skill I hope to use again later on in life. PunPun K11

Dol C12

The Japan Expedition gave me a rare opportunity to learn new skills such as skiing. Skiing itself was fun but together with my best friends, it was even more memorable. I won’t forget how we endured the cold together as we skied down the slope. Fern K12




On Friday 8th February, 24 excited divers set off on the overnight train to Koh Tao. The journey passed by in a blink of an eye as games and music were being played. On Saturday morning we arrived on the beautiful island of Koh Tao, after a surprisingly calm crossing. Straight away the divers were in classrooms, learning about their courses and the safety requirements of being underwater. After a couple of days practise in the swimming pool, we headed out to sea on a large pirate ship and enjoyed the wonders of the coral and sea life at various dive sites around the island. Having passed all the required tests and successfully completed the required skills in the sea, the divers were now PADI Open Water 1 qualified, congratulations. In addition, two divers completed their advanced open water qualifications and one did three specialities, including diving in a shipwreck. On the final night, we celebrated with an open mic night and BBQ on the beach. We all headed home tired but satisfied that we have completed a world recognised qualification that enables us to dive for the rest of their lives. Well done dive team. Ben John Sixth Form Expedition Leader




Before signing up, this expedition would be the last one I would have opted for. I am confident that most Sixth Formers would have the same thoughts on not wanting to travel to one of the poorest countries in the world and build a mud house in the middle of nowhere. However, upon completing this expedition, it was by far my favourite expedition. We saw what living in borderline poverty is like by staying in homestay families in Laos and the value of education for Laotians. Building the mud dormitory to enable rural students to study in a high school located far from them showed us Harrovians that we should not take our private education for granted. Many agreed that this expedition was one of the most life-changing experiences we have ever had as we reflected upon the two parallel lives of the villagers’ lifestyle and ours. Another wonderful experience was the homestay where the villagers warmly welcome us to stay in their house and provided us with three delicious meals a day. Apart from doing chores in the village, another highlight for me was the treks to the village and to the magnificent Kuang Si Falls. During this time, we saw beautiful rice farms and terraces, and local school children having fun by playing games. On one of the treks, we climbed up to the equivalent of 70 floors. Sai Swarm S13




There couldn’t be a much better location for learning about eco-living than a traditional village set deep in the Balinese jungle with no hot water, no 4G and only an enthusiastic rooster for our morning alarm clock. The expedition kicked off as soon as we arrived with lots of fun activities such as making ‘canangs’ as offerings and learning traditional dance. An adrenaline packed second day followed, rafting down the Ayung River, with teams working together to guide the raft and jumping in to enjoy the cool water. A temple visit in the afternoon allowed some time for contemplation, ready for an evening trying our hands at chocolate making (from scratch!) and shadow puppet theatre. It was really impressive how quickly our students worked in groups to design and perform their theatre shows to express some impactful messages about conservation. The next day we had the opportunity to visit a local school and everyone had great fun connecting with the young children through games and songs to teach them some English. For the second half of the trip, we traversed the beautiful island to reach our second stop at the surf camp. We were immediately stunned by the stark beauty of the place with its black volcanic sand and waves gently rolling in as far as the eye could see. The days passed with a routine of morning surfing, relaxation, ocean skills lessons late afternoon, followed by beach games as the sun was setting. It was incredible how quickly everyone was catching waves by themselves and standing up on the board with confidence. That’s not to say there weren’t some truly epic wipeouts along the way! Although it was sad to leave our hosts, the students left with fond memories of the quality time spent together and a new set of skills to help them connect with nature again in future. Mark Jevons Sixth Form Expedition Leader



The Balkans

The Balkans was an extraordinary expedition of cultural and historic intrigue and wondrous scenery. Students were able to engage with the recent and tumultuous history of the region through first-hand accounts from survivors and witnesses to the Yugoslav wars of the 1990s. The lasting impact of the conflict is still evident in the ruins and monuments of the fascinating cities of Mostar and Sarajevo. Coupled with the history, students were also overwhelmed by the incredible national parks, amazing geographic scenery such as the icy waterfalls of the Plitvice Lakes and the sapphire waters of the Mediterranean in the shade of ancient walled cities; a real melting pot of cultures and cuisine. Fans of the epic series Game of Thrones were also enthralled by the numerous sites that feature in the show. From King’s Landing in Dubrovnik to Mereen in Split, this expedition had a wealth of experiences for the students to engage in for a truly memorable time. Jeff Rothwell Sixth Form Expedition Leader





A 6am start is never popular with teenagers, but with the promise of a Starbucks and McDonalds for breakfast, the Koh Chang bound group all managed to be away on time. This expedition is the longest running and one of the more popular of the Sixth Form expedition trips and, on arrival on Koh Chang, it is easy to see why. With its glorious beaches, beautiful hilly vistas and a great hotel, this is the kind of expedition which busy A Level students need to have in order to recharge batteries before the final exam mountain needs to be climbed. That is not to say that the expedition is simply a relaxing break. A full day out at sea snorkelling around four islands (and a mini beach clean) gave us all an education into the enormous plastics challenge facing the area; the mini-trek to the waterfall and plunge

in its cold waters reminded us that it was not just the sea that faced problems of human waste and rubbish; while a trip to a local Khmer school – the highlight of the trip for all of us – demonstrated how the region was changing in terms of its people as well. Over half the population of Koh Chang is now Khmer and the children of the families are in desperate need of education. The Khmer school – run by a Thai teacher – supplies food and learning to these children who danced and sang and schooled us in football for a good few hours. They are in need of real support, especially as the rainy season closes in, and next year we are hoping that this trip will adapt to become more community serviced focused and help support the school some more. The students, as ever, make a trip enjoyable, and this group were willing to chip in, dive in and get involved in all the activities on offer. I am sure they will remember it for many years to come…especially the pancakes the bought outside the front of the hotel! Sev Herbert Sixth Form Expedition Leader



South Africa

The South African Expedition was definitely a trip to remember. Having made so many amazing and unforgettable memories from the adventures, and from spending time with such great people. Although we had to endure the long travel from Bangkok to South Africa, everything was all worth it when we first arrived at the gates of Kruger National Park. We stayed at the Pretoriuskop Rest Camp, where we would spend our days relaxing, catching up and preparing ourselves for all the safari drives. The safari drives were the highlight of the entire trip. Not only did we enjoy the breathtaking scenery of the park itself, but we saw all sorts of amazing African wildlife. We managed to spot all the animals of the Big Five (lions, leopards, rhinoceros, elephants, and Cape buffaloes), as well as so many other exotic creatures like zebras, giraffes, hyenas and so much more. Steph K12



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Harrovian 14 March 2019  

Harrovian 14 March 2019  

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