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PRINCIPAL‘S MESSAGE When I was interviewed for the feature story (p. 26) in this issue of Eagle Eye, I was asked to reflect on the re-integration of RI and the former Raffles Junior College (RJC) in January 2009, and to take stock of what we had achieved since then. The subject was still fresh on my mind a few days after the interview when I came across this quote by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe: Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it. I was struck by how Goethe’s words could easily be applied to our re-integration process. When RI and RJC’s Boards of Governors first mooted the idea of reintegration, they were unanimous in their belief that re-integration would bring about exponential benefits. They were equally clear that the process would be operationally challenging at the beginning, as there would be a multitude of issues to address concurrently. However, they knew that we had what it would take – big dreams and the courage to do what had to be done. The boldness to pursue our dream was magnified by the fact that we had much to lose. Very often, when organisations undergo major restructuring, it is because the current circumstances have become, or will soon become, unsustainable. That was not the case for RI or RJC at the time. By all accounts, both schools were recognised as the premier secondary school and junior college in Singapore, and looked set to remain so for a long time to come. In other words, the option to stay in the status quo and remain in our comfort zone was an attractive one. Thankfully, we turned our back on the soft option and decided to re-integrate, to return to what it was like when RI was offering Pre-U classes. Our goal was to secure RI’s future as the top educational institution in the secondary and pre-university sectors in Singapore, and to make our mark in Asia and beyond as a premier learning institution. Once the decision to re-integrate was made, all who had a stake in the school got down to work. In the first year, a new Board was formed to chart the directions for the new RI, our administrative services were integrated to better facilitate the sharing of resources, and most importantly, plans to integrate the academic staff and school programmes were drawn up. The intense preparatory work ensured the smooth implementation of our plans as we moved into the second year of reintegration. As we rolled out these plans, which ranged from overhauling our school programmes to reconnecting with our alumni, there were countless moments in which we witnessed the genius, power and magic of the work we had begun. Now, just slightly more than two years after our re-integration, we are already reaping the fruit of our labour. As you read about some of these in the feature story, I hope that you too will experience and be inspired by the genius, power and magic found in them. Lim Lai Cheng (Mrs)

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EDITORS’ MESSAGE While RI has traditionally been a premier school for academic excellence, that is not to say that it is less effectual in focusing on other areas of growth for its students. The pursuit of knowledge is highly revered within these hallowed halls, but at the same there is a complementary – not merely supplementary – emphasis on other aspects of a Raffles education. Hence we present the first issue of Eagle Eye for the year 2011, which has been reorganised around the five domains of the Raffles Diploma: Cognitive, Character and Leadership, Community and Citizenship, Arts and Aesthetics, and Sports and Health. The Raffles Diploma is a flexible system that expands traditional notions of success, and recognises achievements attained by Rafflesians in a wide spectrum of areas. These activities tap the individual talents, interests and abilities of each student, thereby maximizing the potential of the thinker, leader and pioneer. It encompasses and integrates multiple layers of meaning and experience into a student’s six-year journey rather than defining the possibilities narrowly. Similarly, Eagle Eye has taken a new direction this year. No longer are the articles merely a medium for information, but they delve deeper as we explore the potency of words, the human condition, and the multi-faceted student experience. As we move away from articles stuck in the flatness of events, we aim to produce pieces that are grounded in the facts and happenings of events, yet touch on so much more. It is with the words in these pieces that we paint the Rafflesian experience, and it is only through a combination of our stories and anecdotes that one begins to understand this variegated Rafflesian experience, which the Raffles Diploma so neatly recognises and celebrates. Eagle Eye is no longer merely a publication that reports, but a publication that inquires. We are no longer merely a publication that informs, but a publication that contemplates. We are no longer merely a publication that provides mechanical details, but a publication that resonates with the student experience. Gerald Tan (4D) Soh Qi Rui (4K)

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Year 1 Orientation 5 January The theme for this year was ‘Lodestar – Switch It On. Power Up. Shine’. A lodestar is a star that leads or guides, and becomes an inspiration to follow. Through the orientation camp, new students got to know the school environment, and were introduced to the Rafflesian spirit and traditions.

EVENT HIG BY Corporate Communications Department

Homecoming 2011 6 January Homecoming for the Year 6 students started with a concert, followed by the newly-introduced civics breakfast at the canteen. The occasion allowed staff and students to catch up after the long holiday break, and was also a platform for Year 6 students to reflect on the past year and prepare for the new one. A week-long event called the Hodge Lodge Highlights was also held, with movie screenings and gaming competitions.

Siow Lee Chin Masterclass 7 January Renowned violinist and Rafflesian Siow Lee Chin was in Singapore as part of the Oberlin Orchestra Asia Tour. She conducted a masterclass for three students: Lieu Kah Yen (2F), Edward Koay (2G) and Ryan Kwan (12S07B). In just over an hour, she demonstrated the insight, vision and intuition that mark a Rafflesian, coaxing, cajoling, teasing and inspiring these three young musicians to improve their performances through self-examination.

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GHLIGHTS

Event Highlights

Year 5 – 6 Open House 7 January Over 1,500 students and parents attended the event, with the theme ‘Rafblood From the Heart’. They were treated to performances, academic displays, and exhibition matches. Student ambassadors, called the Befrienders, led potential students and their parents on a tour of the campus. Year 3 Outward Bound Singapore 4–8 January As per tradition, the Year 3 students started the school year by spending a week at Outward Bound Singapore on Pulau Ubin. Students kayaked, trekked and tried their hand at the high-rope challenge. They were exhilarated by the experience as they participated in various activities that emphasised different aspects of leadership and teamwork.

Year 4 Orientation 4–5 January The Year 4 cohort had more opportunities to bond with each other through their orientation programme. The theme ‘Fire Up My Avatar!’ challenged them to journey beyond the familiar. The 17 classes participated in one of three programme strands: Castles Can Fly, Dialogue in the Dark and Laser Shootout, and High Impact Arête and Laser Shootout. Students emerged with a new awareness of the possibilities within themselves, as well as an understanding of the value of strategising and focusing as part of a team, and of standing in unity when faced with challenges.

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Year 5 – 6 Take 5 7–11 February Take 5 commemorates Total Defence Day, Chinese New Year and Friendship Day by allowing Year 5 and 6 Rafflesians to let their hair down at Sentosa, where they took part in a range of land and sea games. This year’s Take 5 was a week-long event, starting from Monday with the Chinese New Year celebrations, and followed by activities for Total Defence Day, Racial Harmony Day and Friendship Day on the other days. There were fashion shows, cultural performances, and a special appearance by the men and machines from the Singapore Armed Forces.

EVENT HIG BY Corporate Communications Department

Gryphon Award Gala Dinner 13 January Held at the Ritz-Carlton Millenia Hotel, this event was attended by 800 alumni and friends of the school. RI presented Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew, from the Class of 1940, with the inaugural Gryphon Award. The dinner also helped to raise funds for the 1823 Fund, which will be used for scholarships for needy students, student-run community projects, science research, sports programmes and teacher training. By the end of the night, a total of $10 million had been raised, with MM Lee himself contributing $50,000. Year 5 Orientation 27, 28 & 31 January / 2 February The theme for Orientation 2011 was ‘D’elchanto’, which in Portuguese means ‘strength from within’. Over 1,200 Year 5 students (including 500 students from Raffles Girls’ School and another 200 from other secondary schools) participated in a range of activities to foster unity, team spirit and ‘strength from within’. The orientation ended with a campfire on the last night, where students mixed and mingled together as Rafflesians one and all.

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Event Highlights

Visit by French Minister for Education 28 January

GHLIGHTS

The French Minister for Education, Mr Luc Chatel (together with the French Ambassador to Singapore, His Excellency Olivier Caron), visited RI to better understand the school and its curriculum. After being briefed by principal Mrs Lim Lai Cheng, the visitors were brought on a short tour of the school, during which Mr Chatel engaged in a short dialogue session with some students.

Year 1 Junior Rafflesian Investiture Ceremony 10 January This ceremony marks the most important day for the Year 1 students – the day when they are inducted into the Rafflesian community by their form teachers who present them with the school badge. With their proud parents in attendance, the boys ended the investiture in true Rafflesian style, bellowing their newlylearnt school cheers.

Year 1 – 4 Chinese New Year Celebrations 1 February The celebrations were a fun-filled affair, with numerous performances ranging from martial arts to a lion dance, as well as skits put up by the students.

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Kiwi Cup 21 February This annual event between the RI and St Andrew’s rugby teams started in 1967 and pits the skills of not only the two school teams against each other, but also alumni teams as well. As in previous years, the event brought together alumni, students and staff in a day of camaraderie and sportsmanship. The guest-of-honour for this year was Mr Low Teo Ping, the president of the Singapore Rugby Union, and the cup was won by the St Andrews team.

Year 1 – 4 Total Defence Week 15 February The theme for this year’s Total Defence Week was ‘HOME – Keeping It Together’. The activity-filled week included a Total Defence Day Commemoration Parade - a wreathlaying ceremony to remember the Rafflesians who gave their life during World War II, and a ‘Spot the Suspicious Parcel’ contest which encouraged students to be more alert about security issues.

Year 1 – 4 Cross Country Championship 25 March The Year 1 – 4 Cross-Country Championship took place at the Bedok Reservoir. Participants – including both staff and students – had to run a distance of 4.2km around the Bedok Reservoir Park as part of the competition. Moor House won the championship for this year.

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EVENT HIG BY Corporate Communications Department


Event Highlights RI Prefectorial Board Investiture 2 March

GHLIGHTS

The investiture was graced by Eugene Tan Kheng Boon, an assistant professor with the School of Law at the Singapore Management University, as well as an advocate and solicitor of the Supreme Court of Singapore. With the theme ‘Accelerate: Steering the Drive’, the occasion was filled with celebration and pride as certificates were presented to newly elected prefects and prefect executive committee members. There were also performances to entertain the guests.

Class Executive Committee (CEC) Investiture 8 March This formal event recognises the important roles played by student representatives of each class. As members of the CEC, these students exercise leadership and look after the class morale and batch spirit. Besides the class representatives, level representatives as well as the CEC council were also invested during the event. Year 1 – 4 Swimming Carnival 25 February Held at the RI swimming pool, this annual event saw houses pitting their best swimmers against each other. Groups of students cheered their hearts out under the blazing sun. Moor House emerged champions with 496 points.

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Year 1 - 4

WHY PHILOSOPHY MATTERS WRITERS Andre Hui (3C) Teng Hao (4K)

Rafflesians spend 1 hour and 40 minutes studying philosophy every week. What do we get out of it? Cogito ergo sum – ‘I think, therefore I am’. These are the words the famous French philosopher René Descartes gave the world, and these are the words to which Year 1 students in the Raffles Philosophy Programme are encouraged to reply, ‘And what do you mean by that?’ The programme teaches students how to analyse arguments, construct premises and conclusions, and examine moral theories as well as other philosophical theories to understand how they operate. At the heart of the programme is the Community of Inquiry, which teaches students how to articulate their views on a topic in a civil, humble, and comprehensible manner. Much more than just theory, though, the programme is about teaching Rafflesians to think and to form good thought-habits. Philosophy is so much more than the boring subject it is often perceived to be. Philosophy, in fact, is a way of life. It allows

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Rafflesians to become more critical in order to accurately identify flaws and fallacies in reasoning, as well as to be more sensitive and humble in our intellectual endeavours. We become better able to defend a point in a debate with clearer, more efficient thought processes. On top of that, we also learn to present our thoughts with intellectual humility – the idea that we must always share our views with sensitivity and respect for everyone involved. In a nutshell, the programme accentuates the thinker in the Rafflesian. On a personal level, the programme has helped me to develop my inter-relational skills. In Year 1, before we were taught philosophy, I tended to dismiss arguments opposing my stance by cutting off the other persons, ignoring their point altogether, or rejecting or refuting their argument in a way that was flawed and baseless. However, after we were taught the CRAP (Clarity, Relevance, Accuracy and Precision) technique, as well as how to argue in a civilised and acceptable manner through the Community of Inquiry, the next time I came across a point of contention, I could more clearly express my views so that my opponent could understand me better, and I could also address the key issue being disputed more

directly, instead of targeting the manner in which people argued. Despite this, some students may question if philosophy has a place in this clinical, financially-driven modern society. Money, to them, speaks a good deal more than an impeccable argument. One hardly expects to make a living tossing around deep and vague musings, like whether Truth exists in this world. Money exists, and it appears as if that’s about all the truth we need. That’s why some students still question whether the time the school devotes to philosophy lessons – 1 hour and 40 minutes every week – is worth it, when that time could be spent on other more ‘profitable’ subjects such as mathematics. But we believe that all our grand ideas would be lost if no one wanted to listen to us because we were too pompous, rude or just plain pushy. We would also certainly prefer to be Socrates unsatisfied than a fool easily satisfied.The skills and dispositions that we learn in philosophy classes will be useful to us in years to come. When the occasion calls for Rafflesians to defend the causes they champion for good from the sceptics and cynics in the world out there, they can be confident in doing so.


Cognitive

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Year 5 - 6

FULFILLING THE HOPE OF A BETTER AGE: A-LEVEL RESULTS, CLASS OF 2010 WRITERS Anurak Saelaow Hao (11A01C) Leena Nair (11A01E)

The A-level results are out! And the Class of 2010 has showed its mettle. EAGLE 12 EYE


Cognitive

(L-R): Nigel Fong (10S03O) Kaushik Venkatarman (10S06Q) Barry Tng (10S06P)

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A

Year 5 - 6

The A-levels mark the end of every Rafflesian’s school years, the culmination of six years of hard work. As a school RI continues to uphold its reputation as a pinnacle of academic achievement, especially when it comes to national examinations. This year has been no different: academic records were equalled or broken, and the Class of 2010 has done the school proud. In her presentation at the Multi-Purpose Hall on 4 March, when the results were released, RI Principal Mrs Lim Lai Cheng presented the highlights of this

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year’s results to students, staff and eager reporters. This cohort of students has been unique from the start: some of them were the first batch to undergo the full four-year Raffles Academy programme (a talent development programme for exceptionally gifted students) and/or to offer English Language and Linguistics as an A-level subject. While the batch before had only one student who offered 13 units of study and who obtained a perfect score of nine distinctions, this batch produced three: Nigel Fong Jie Ming (10S03O),

Barry Tng Jia Hao (10S06P) and Kaushik Subramanian Venkatarman (10S06Q). To Barry and Kaushik, the news was unexpected. ‘It was quite a delightful surprise,’ said Barry that day; he has since received a Public Service Commission scholarship. Kaushik concurred, adding, ‘I’m still in shock. I never expected to do so well.’ For Nigel, the year proved to be a tough one because of his diverse commitments. As he recounted, ‘I went for the Chemistry Olympiad in July, four weeks


Cognitive

SHINING THROUGH: ACHIEVING EXCELLENCE UNDER PRESSURE before the prelims. I’m glad it turned out okay.’ Barry related the difficulties he faced in the path to success. ‘I come from a Chinesespeaking family, so my command of English isn’t as proficient. In my last two years at RI, I’ve never gotten an A in GP before.’ Of course, it was not just the high-fliers who were rejoicing but the whole school as well. Twenty-eight per cent of the Class of 2010 produced perfect University Admission Scores, while 11 per cent scored distinctions in all subjects offered, as compared to 9.8 per cent in the previous year. Another marked improvement could be seen in the H3 results – one in two students scored a distinction in their H3 subject, a new milestone for the school.

After the recent release of the A-level results, some notable individuals stand out – not just because of their academic excellence, but because of the various and unique challenges they faced while in the course of preparing for the exams. Contrary to the recent debate in the Straits Times over graduate parents of students in elite schools, the parents of straight-A student Aqilahbinte Abdul Raman (10S06C) had a secondary school education. She attributes her success to hard work and persistence. ‘I tried to spend every day on work in order to perform consistently. While my parents couldn’t teach me directly, they always gave me support and had faith in me.’ Speaking of parents, Norman Aziz (10A01A) also stands out. Coming from a Chinese and Malay family, he sat for – and did well in – his Higher Chinese O-levels. He provided some words of advice: ‘If you face any significant difficulty, just leap at the problem and don’t give up. Just keep at it and eventually you’ll succeed.’ Lastly, Casatrina Lee (10S06P) took 13 subject units, with two H3s, and also had to balance her role as a competitive figure skater. She clinched the gold in the National Women’s Figure Skating Championship last year and also scored a string of distinctions in the A-levels. She tells us, ‘Skating was a way for me to de-stress after studies, really. There were times when time management was crucial, and I’m glad I could cope.’

As Mrs Lim stated, ‘RI has once again emerged as the clear leader of the 2010 cohort.’ This was also the extraordinary batch which achieved 21 gold, 10 silver and 6 bronze awards in the ‘A’ Division Inter-school National Sports Competitions. Their results slips in hand, the students’ anticipation was almost visible with their faces turned towards the afternoon light, as if inundated by the possibilities that lay ahead. As they left the school, triumphant and flushed with good news, we shared their joy and wished them well in the years to come.

(L-R): Aqilah Binte Abdul Raman (10S06C) Norman Aziz (10A01A) Casatrina Lee (10S06P)

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Year 1 - 4

STUDENTS TURN DIPLOMATS AT HARVARD WRITERS Tan Kuan Hian (3A) Lionel Foon (4G)

RI’s first Year 4 team reports back from the annual Harvard Model United Nations (HMUN) conference.

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Character & Leadership

On 24 January, six RI student leaders – Chua Jun Yan (4D), Antariksh Mahajan (4E), Matthias Goh (4E), Eugene Lim (4H), Jonathan Tan (4H) and Loo Tien Pan (4I) – headed to the United States. Their mission: to represent RI (Year 1 – 4) for the first time at the Harvard Model United Nations (HMUN) conference, a four-day international relations simulation for secondary school students from around the world. HMUN is organised by Harvard University students and is held annually in downtown Boston. Established in 1945, it provides student leaders with a constructive forum for open dialogue on global issues. By assuming the roles of UN representatives, they also gain insights into the workings of the UN and the dynamics of international relations. Because of the competitive nature of HMUN, the atmosphere of the discussions is quite serious, and requires participants to be quick-thinking and perceptive. What makes the conference sui generis is that it is probably the closest any of our students can get to simulating UN discussions. According to Antariksh and Jun Yan, who shared their experiences with Eagle Eye, conflicts often arose during discussions with delegates from different countries.

At one time, the whole committee was basically polarised between two resolutions. However, contrary to what one may expect, the resolutions only differed in minor details, such as the method of implementing the same programme, instead of differing in the choice of programme itself. Conflict was indeed inevitable, with opposing groups trying to push for different things. However, the conflicts were eventually resolved with a compromise on both parties’ parts. This compromise was achieved by combining the elements of both resolutions to form one wholesome solution. For the elements which did conflict with each other, a better one was chosen based on mutual agreement and included in the final resolution. The point was to include the strengths of both resolutions in the final compromise. Still, our two young delegates were not entirely satisfied with the outcome. For Jun Yan, ‘I wouldn’t say the compromise is a better solution from a technical perspective. But from a political perspective, it garners support from different countries, and of course this entails certain trade-offs in terms of the specificity of the resolution and the interests of the different countries.’ This is indeed

a true representation of how one does not always get one’s way in international diplomacy, with Antariksh adding that the end product was necessarily something palatable to all parties. When asked if their debating experience assisted them (Jun Yan and Antariksh are the Chairman and Vice-Chairman of Raffles Debaters respectively), both were quick to disagree. According to Antariksh, ‘Debating is inherently confrontational, which means that anything anyone else says is wrong. But this is not the case in HMUN, or diplomacy in general, because you have to try and find a middle ground where both sides benefit.’ But he was quick to add that debating did help them to communicate as seasoned speakers. This probably contributed to their winning the honourable mention award. Besides work, our young delegates were also given a lesson in the art of having fun. A highlight of the conference, and a key way it perhaps differed from the real UN, was a night of celebrations at the end of the competition, with student leaders from different countries partying till the wee hours of the morning. When asked if he had participated, Jun Yan could only grin.‘Of course! I was there till 1.30 a.m.’

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Year 1 - 4

CHEERING THE CHEERS ON WRITER Teng Hao (4K)

We’re used to bellowing cheers as loud as we can – but have we been cheering with heart? ‘Rafflesians unite, we’ll show our might…’ The ‘Unite’ cheer has always been the centrepiece of RI’s arsenal of cheers and remains very much so. Indeed, it is considered by many to be close to sacred. Very close, but not quite, because I’ve always noticed that some Rafflesians do not appear to take the cheering seriously. This is especially evident after some assemblies when the Unite cheer is performed – the lyrics are jumbled up and the cheer comes across as uncoordinated. The result is hardly worth cheering about. Cheering serves a number of important purposes. In competitions, for example, it encourages athletes to press on during a gruelling match. A poorly-delivered cheer will accomplish the very opposite, especially if the cheers of the competing team are delivered with more gusto by its supporters.

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Character & Leadership

As Mr Chow Kia Meng, Head, Admissions, who is also an old boy of the school, put it, ‘Cheering has a very powerful impact on our athletes during a competition – it boosts their spirits and raises their morale.’ But how do some cheers end up so poorly delivered? One possible reason is that the importance of cheering has not been conveyed to students to help them understand that cheering is an aural manifestation of the school spirit. I fear that as a result, there are fellow Rafflesians who might have become cynics like me, sharing the belief that cheering is merely a pointless show of male ego. However, hearing the Year 1 students perform the ‘Unite’ cheer has forced me to re-evaluate my opinion. I heard this cheer for the very first time for what it is from

the Year 1 students during their Orientation. The experience was simply magical. From an extremely diverse group of individuals from over 100 different primary schools, the Year 1s had become integrated into the big family of RI. Instead of the scattered ‘Unite’ cheer that I have been accustomed to, their cheering was something that has clearly changed my understanding of cheers. This is due in part to this year’s Peer Support Leaders (PSLs) who have spent more time underscoring the importance of cheering to Year 1s. The PSLs reminded them that cheering pushes our athletes to do their best. As a fellow athlete puts it, nothing beats hearing a well-executed cheer in the middle of a tough match. It refreshes and renews the fervour in our athletes. Cheering can also stir up something deep and overwhelming within the

supporters, reminding us that we are all part of an institution with a 188-year history, forging ahead with a common purpose. Indeed, a good cheer can rouse a gryphon from its nest. Thus, Rafflesians, let’s continue to ‘walk to the fight in green, black, white,’ and ‘show them how we fight!’

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Year 5 - 6

SHARON TAN: PIONEERING ON

BY Corporate Communications Department

President’s Scholar and first woman SAF Scholar Sharon Tan reflects on how she got this far.

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Character & Leadership No stranger to awards and achievements, Sharon Tan Xin Hui, from the Class of 2010, has previously received awards from the Ministry of Education and Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR). After recently receiving her A-level results, she added another feather to her cap: the President’s Scholarship. Asked about her initial reaction, Sharon said, ‘I felt extremely honoured, grateful and slightly overwhelmed.’ On her secret to getting the prestigious scholarship, she reflected, ‘Being able to stay calm throughout the interview probably allowed the committee to understand me better. Also, I prepared for the interview by making sure I was clear about my motivations and goals.’

Sharon also made the news for being the first woman to be awarded the Singapore Armed Forces Overseas Scholarship. On taking up this scholarship, she credited the countless sacrifices made by her parents and the education she received in RI. ‘I owe a big part of my well-being and identity to the country. I don’t think that I could have turned out the way I did in any other place, and I appreciated that,’ she explained. ‘In return, it’s only right to give back. Given how central defence is to the well-being of our young nationstate, joining the SAF is my way of doing my duty.’ Despite the many awards she has received, Sharon remains humble, even philosophical about her

‘I owe a big part of my well-being and identity to the country. I don’t think that I could have turned out the way I did in any other place, and I appreciated that.’

achievements. ‘Achievements are worth only as much as we learn from them. I set high standards for my endeavours, but eventually I found that believing in the purpose of whatever activity one does and pursuing that goal with dedication are essential to making it truly meaningful,” she said. Sharon aspires to be a leader and has been taking firm steps towards this goal. As a student in RI, she was actively involved in the Students’ Council, and was highly regarded by her peers for her dedication, enthusiasm and warmth. She also volunteered at the Meet-thePeople sessions in her housing estate and from these sessions, she has nurtured a deeper social consciousness of the less fortunate members of society. Now pursuing an undergraduate degree in earth sciences and political science at Stanford University in the USA, Sharon isn’t resting on her laurels. She has been keeping herself busy not only with her studies, but also with other pursuits. Apart from being a subgroup leader in the campus organisation Students for a Sustainable Stanford, she is also participating in a hip-hop dance group, directing a production and trying her hand at being a designer, among many pursuits. When asked how she copes with so many commitments, Sharon cited the importance of her education in RI. ‘RI has taught me well in many spheres: social, academic and self-development. I learnt to function under pressure, to be a good team player, to listen and speak, and to work hard. RI has provided me with many opportunities to develop my character and help me gain a better self-awareness.’

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Year 1 - 4

WHEN DRINKING WATER WRITERS Duranka Viran Jayasinghe (4L) Soh Qi Rui (4K)

The Interact Club welcomes the Lunar New Year with their elderly guests.

REMEMBER THE SPRING

The Year 1 – 4 Interact Club held its annual Lunar New Year Dinner for the elderly residents of Bishan on 10 February 2011. The event required not only a lot of hard work but also the passion to carry it out, and left a lasting impression on all those involved. Starting in mid-December 2010, students worked into the first term of 2011, often holding many meetings to confirm the performances and logistics for

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the event. The tiniest details were looked into to ensure the best experience for the dinner guests. For Interact Club Chairman Tong Yiu Yin (4P) and his team, the great challenge was having to manage close to 100 volunteers. Each volunteer had to know exactly what he needed to do and how he could contribute to the smooth running of the event. A number of changes were made to the standard line-up for this

year’s Lunar New Year Dinner. There was a new caterer, recommended by the Raffles Parents’ Association, and a more diverse range of performances. The latter included a stunning magic show, a Cantonese music performance and a Bollywood-style dance. The volunteers put all their energy into entertaining the elderly and making them feel comfortable throughout the dinner. Goh Eng Han (4J) shared his reflections: ‘I was quite touched by the


Community & Citizenship resilience of the elderly guests, as despite their old age, they were still very vibrant and enthusiastically participated in the dinner activities. Also, they were very caring and friendly towards each other. For example, there was this pair of unrelated guests who were happily chatting with each other. One of them needed to use a walking aid to move around, and the other would always accompany her and help her along, making sure that she was safe wherever she went.’ For Yiu Yin, he says the most memorable part of the event ‘were the smiles and well-wishes from the elderly, however clichéd this may sound. It’s not easy to describe it, but I remember clearly how their eyes shone with genuine warmth and depth of feeling. It was clear to me that they left with more than just a goody bag and a red packet – they also had a deep, memorable experience. At that moment, I felt proud to be a volunteer for this event.’ Sometimes this spirit of service and community involvement might seem to be repeated in all different ways, but we should not forget that it truly does exist.

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Year 5 - 6

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ISLE – NOT WHAT YOU THINK IT IS WRITER Tan Yi Jie Gifford (11S03R)

A look behind the scenes at what went on during an ISLE team’s trip to Lijiang, China. One year might seem like an inordinately long time to prepare for a project, but that wasn’t our experience in the International Service Learning Elective (ISLE) programme. Divided into groups, we were headed to five different destinations: Cangyuan, China; Cambodia for two projects, Cambodia Riverkids and Cambodia Rainwater; Laos; and Lijiang, China – my group’s destination. Although the 52 weeks we had to prepare might have lulled some into a false sense of security, our preparations soon took on a life of their own. Originally, we were convinced that our greatest challenge was in pegging the standard of English of our lesson packages at an appropriate level. We reasoned that a simplistic vocabulary list would likely bore them, while overly complex sentences might demoralise them. Hence the lesson plans became the focal point of our preparations, as we were constantly amending and testing our package to ensure that the

lessons conducted would receive promising results. We also had to raise funds for the trip and prepare ourselves for the social and cultural differences we would encounter.

We left Singapore imbued with the quiet confidence that our painstakingly crafted lesson packages would help us make a difference. However, after our first few interactions with the Chinese students, many of us realised that other ways were needed to help improve their English. Everyday we faced the challenge of expanding their vocabulary or correcting their syntax. Not only did we have to grapple with our inadequate lesson plans, we also had to quickly find our feet in helping to motivate them to study English, something that we were not prepared for. With an amorphous sense of purpose and focus, the sense of frustration was exacerbated by the brief two-week duration that we had to work with. Our frustration was manifested during our daily night-time debriefs, as we questioned our actions of the day both audibly and in our hearts. In the words of my team mate Low Jia Wei (11S06R), ‘The few hours in the classroom felt exactly like what it was – short and brief. What

Community & Citizenship

were we doing there, thinking we could really improve their English in three, four hours?’ Thankfully, as the Chinese students took to our lessons in earnest, we began to understand the wisdom of being, as Mahatma Gandhi suggested, the change we want to see in the world. A typical day would begin with us guiding the students in stringing words to form a sentence, before moving on to the word games. As English words whizzed about the classroom in conversations, or in response to the word games, the laughter and joy that permeated the atmosphere, and not the content or verbosity of English, was indicative of our progress as a team, and as a mission. We were unable to replace their teachers’ efforts in teaching or drastically improving their English. However, I believe that we helped improve their perception of English as a subject that was impossible to learn, and communicated the idea that bilingualism was achievable and beneficial. Looking back at the heartfelt letters of the students from Ming Yi School, I realised that it wasn’t so much the hardware which we had so painstakingly prepared for the trip, but our dedication, perseverance and passion that shone through which touched the hearts of our charges.

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SETTING THE GOLD STANDARD OF REINTEGRATION WRITERS Jane Tan (Education Technology Officer) Corporate Communications Department

It’s been over two years since RI and Raffles Junior College were re-integrated as one institution. As the dust settles, what new opportunities have come with re-integration and how has the RI student experience changed? EAGLE 26 EYE


Feature

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Year 5 - 6

‘It is also in that moment That you discover The ancient alchemists got it all wrong – The colours that make Gold are Green, Black and White.’ – From ‘Chemistry’ by Daniel Tay, Class of 2010 With a rich tradition and heritage nurtured and cultivated on a bedrock of strong values and convictions, RI has distinguished itself both locally and internationally with its innovative curriculum, and produced generations of illustrious Rafflesians who are leaders, movers and shakers in every aspect of society in Singapore – and often beyond. When its pre-university classes were spun off in 1982 to start a new institution, Raffles Junior College (RJC), both RI and RJC continued to be pioneers on the local education scene, spearheading numerous initiatives that have made Raffles a well-recognised brand name. In January 2009, with a combined history of over two centuries, RI and RJC took a bold new step together, to re-integrate as a single entity that brings together the best of both institutions. Faced with new challenges in an increasingly competitive environment, the re-integrated RI aims to remain true to several of its longstanding traditions: a non-discriminatory emphasis on merit, an unquenchable thirst for excellence, and a deep desire to

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contribute to the public good. Strength as ONE Since 2004, all students at RI have followed the six-year Raffles Programme. With re-integration, the programme has become more powerful and flexible in the way the curriculum is designed and delivered. ‘Now with the six-year alignment, we are able to synergise our efforts and create more options and pathways for students during their entire Raffles experience. We are getting to the point where we can truly say that there’s a niche for everyone here in RI, be it in maths and science, the arts, sports, or community outreach.’ says Mr Seah Chye Ann, Dean of the Raffles Academy. Alumnus Kaushik Subramanian Venkataraman, from the Class of 2010, concurs. ‘The Raffles Programme has nurtured me in so many ways. Looking back, with the choices provided in RI, I was able to invest my time and efforts in doing things I found meaningful and worthwhile, whether it was Chemistry Olympiad training,

setting up the RI Investment Club, or organising a fundraising performance with the Indian Cultural Club.’ Kaushik was one of the top three Rafflesians who secured straight distinctions in 13 units at the 2010 A-level examinations. Drawing on its excellent academic track record and experience as one of the oldest schools offering gifted education, the Raffles Academy was introduced in 2007 in RI and RJC, a talent development programme designed to meet the learning needs of exceptionally gifted students. During the foundation-building curriculum programme of Year 1 and 2, Rafflesians who possess a keen and in-depth knowledge of their areas of interest while demonstrating an advanced aptitude, are talent-spotted and invited to join the Raffles Academy. With re-integration, a talent pipeline via the Academy has resulted, where identified Year 3 students are consistently stretched and developed all the way to Year 6. Another way in which RI has


Feature developed its students postintegration is through the strategic deployment of its manpower and resources. One such initiative is the alignment of various CCAs across Year 1 – 6, which includes appointing a common set of coaches as well as teachers-in-charge. Mr Michael Jeyaseelan, Dean of Sports and CCA Development, explains, ‘With the teachers working closely as a team and overseeing the growth of the students from Year 1–6, they gain a better understanding of each student’s strengths and weaknesses and are able to assist them more effectively. In the past, it was not that easy for teachers from the secondary and JC sides to share information. Now, with re-integration, we are working towards a single team of teachers who can support the development of an RI student in his CCA from Year 1 to 6.’ Apart from enhancing mentorship and supervision, this initiative also promotes camaraderie among the Rafflesian community, with the senior students more engaged in helping their juniors. ‘The gradual bonding between the symphonic band in Year 5 – 6 and the military band in Year 1 – 4 is one good example,’ notes Kirk D’Souza (11S03A), President of the Student’s Council. ‘Because they use the same band room, there has been far more interaction and student mentoring. Now with the re-integration, I believe there are a lot more opportunities for the seniors to give back and contribute.’ In order to provide students with a world-class education and to cater to their diverse learning needs via the Raffles Programme and Raffles Academy, RI requires a group of talented, motivated teachers to develop and carry out its programmes. In 2009 the school set up the Raffles Teachers’

Academy (RTA) to attract, retain and develop teachers to be leaders in gifted education. ‘Because of the different demographics of students, the training needs of the teachers in Year 1 – 4 and Year 5 – 6 vary considerably,’ says Mr Kenneth Low, Head of RTA. ‘To equip these teachers with strong content knowledge and effective teaching skills, we’ve come up with a solid learning framework that cuts across the six years.’ The RTA has also collaborated with overseas partners to provide accreditation to teachers in areas such as gifted education and master’s degree courses. Raising the Bar of Excellence The re-integration has enabled RI to further strengthen an already robust character development programme, as reflected in a stronger Rafflesian spirit and a deeper sense of social responsibility. It has also allowed RI to position itself in a league of top international schools. Dovetailing both of these outcomes, RI founded the Global Alliance of Leading-Edge Schools (GALES) in 2010, an informal association of 20 secondary and preparatory schools from around the world. The GALES schools are all characterised by a strong commitment to excellence, leadership development and the global good. GALES will be conducting its first student summit, Tiltshift, in June 2011. It will bring together some 80 student leaders from the GALES schools to explore social issues, exchange ideas, and generate solutions that lead to a more sustainable and equitable global future. For sports in particular – where RI has a long history of excellence, with Rafflesians winning top spots in regional and international

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‘The journey of splitting or merging institutions is never an easy one for the people involved. In both instances, new frameworks and structures have to be set in place. Of even greater significance is the struggle for people’s hearts and minds.’ sports events over the past few decades – there are plans to set up sports excellence programmes that will nurture a community of student athletes across Year 1 – 6. RI will be officially launching the E W Barker Institute of Sports in July 2011 to develop future leaders across the different disciplines of sports, such as sports research, sports science and medicine, and sports education and administration. ‘Looking at the tradition of RI and the combined pool of resources we have now, we are able to offer a valuable platform where we can not only promote greater participation and excellence in sports, but also provide a tangible way of supporting those interested in sports science, a sports career, or sports leadership,’ adds Mr Jeyaseelan. Building on its maxim to nurture its students in every aspect of life, RI will launch the Gap Semester Programme for Year 4 students in 2012. Thanks to a curriculum

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restructuring process that compacts the Year 1 – 4 curriculum into 3½ years, students will soon have half a year to pursue projects, embark on expeditions, or delve into research or attachment opportunities based on their personal passions. ‘Rafflesians often face the happy problem of having too many opportunities – whether it’s a camp, immersion programme, internship or competition,’ says Head Boy Eugene Lim (4H). ‘But we’re always had to juggle these with our studies, which is tricky, and we often come away feeling that the stint was too short. With the Gap Semester, we’ll be able to go into these opportunities with all of our hearts and minds.’ Rafflesians Heed the Call To support its educational and community service objectives, RI launched the 1823 Fund in the year of re-integration. Named for the year RI was founded, the Fund aims to support five key

areas: scholarships and bursaries for students from financially disadvantaged backgrounds, the Raffles Science Institute, the E W Barker Institute of Sports, the Raffles Teachers’ Academy and student-initiated community projects. At a gala dinner held on 13 January 2011 in honour of Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew, a total of $10 million was raised from generous alumni, parents and students for the Fund. This effort is a culmination of the school’s efforts to reach out to alumni, both from RI and RJC. There has been a flurry of alumni-related activities over the past two years since re-integration, with the formation of different alumni-initiated groups, like the Raffles Rugby Union, or Rafflesians United, an alumni network targeted primarily at Rafflesians studying in UK universities. The school also launched its first overseas alumni chapter in Jakarta last year, and plans to launch a


Feature

VOICES IN CHORALE WRITER I Naishad Kai-Ren (12A01B)

Initially, the re-integration of RI and RJC in 2009 came with few tangible changes to students. However, in 2010, the results of the re-integration became more apparent to us, with Rafflesians in Year 1 – 4 working closely with their seniors in Year 5 – 6 in events such as Take 5 and Founder’s Day.

Leadership Institute helmed by fellows drawn from old boys and girls. The goal is to work with schools from around the world to learn and share experiences on leadership training. As the initial process of re-integration settles, Principal Mrs Lim Lai Cheng reflects on the experiences of the last two years: ‘The journey of splitting or merging institutions is never an easy one for the people involved. In both instances, new frameworks and structures have to be set in place. Of even greater significance is the struggle for people’s hearts and minds.’ ‘The staff and students have worked hard at re-integration and opted for the route that takes us to a destination that is ultimately more meaningful.’ She adds, ‘With our engines all fired up and the Rafflesian community behind the school, RI remains right at the leading-edge as we seek to make an impact in the region and beyond.’

I was in the Year 1- 4 choir in 2010, Raffles Voices, and we teamed up with the Year 5 – 6 Raffles Chorale to put up a public concert entitled ‘Limelight’ in the Esplanade last year. It certainly was a novel experience for the choristers from both choirs, where singers from Year 1 – 6 had the opportunity to learn from each other. I found the interaction with my seniors very meaningful for they gave me advice on how to improve my technique and more importantly, extended a helping hand when I was in need. Such care and concern was very touching. Even though we were two choirs, the distinction did not seem to exist during rehearsals. Everyone was treated equally and we worked together towards our common objective – to produce good music. Eventually, we performed to a sell-out crowd in the Esplanade. Each choir sang a few songs individually and we came together to sing a few more. But what an end it was! In a show of true Rafflesian unity, the combined choir sang their encore piece – the Institution Anthem – along with many proud Rafflesians in the audience. What a way to cap this wonderful experience!

‘Even though we were two choirs, the distinction did not seem to exist during rehearsals. Everyone was treated equally and we worked together towards our common objective – to produce good music.’ EAGLE 31 EYE


Year 1 - 4

THE IMPORTANCE OF REST WRITERS Quek Zhi Hao (4E) Lionel Foon (4G)

Rafflesians are known for working hard and playing hard. But are they getting enough sleep?

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Sports & Health A typical school day in the life of Wong Zhe Herng (4I) includes waking up for school at 6.30 a.m., finishing school at about 6.45 p.m. and spending about two hours doing homework. He usually sleeps at 1 or 2 a.m., after planning for various school activities, and admits that he feels sleepy in class. He is one of many Rafflesians who follow such a routine. They often spend long hours away from home to pursue their passions, returning home in the evening only after attending their CCAs and enrichment programmes. It is no wonder that many Rafflesians get little sleep. A poll of 51 Year 1 – 6 Rafflesians has shown that one-third of Rafflesians get only five to six hours of sleep every night, while 19.6 per cent get fewer than five hours. This is far from the 8.5 to 9.25 hours of sleep recommended for adolescents by a 1980 study conducted by Professor Mary Carskadon, Director of the E.P. Bradley Hospital Sleep Research Laboratory at Brown Medical School in the US. One might question if Rafflesians are to blame for their lack of sleep. After all, most teenagers spend a great deal of time socialising and on leisure activities such as computer games and watching TV. However, the majority of students surveyed had indicated that they spend only one to two hours a day on such activities; even if they had traded such activities for sleep, they would still be short of Professor Carskadon’s recommended amount of sleep. Furthermore, teens generally sleep later at night due to the buildup of the excitatory hormone cortisol. This – according to Elizabeth Young, professor of psychiatry and research scientist at the University of Michigan Mental Health Research Institute – makes sleeping difficult. The fact that Rafflesians suffer from a lack of sleep is of great

A poll of 51 Year 1 – 6 Rafflesians has shown that onethird of Rafflesians get only five to six hours of sleep every night, while 19.6 per cent get fewer than five hours.

concern: Dr Jeni Worden, as quoted by the BBC Health, suggests that sleep deprivation may lead to general moodiness, longer reaction times and a reduced ability to rationalise. Fatigue due to lack of sleep can also stack up, resulting in an ever-increasingly tired person, writes Professor Charles A. Czeisler of Harvard Medical School, on the website The Science Network. The 76.5 per cent of surveyed Rafflesians who admit to being sleepy in class can testify to this. For Zhe Herng, being both a CCA Leader and Assistant CCA Leader means that he spends two to three hours a day planning for CCAs. This high-achieving attitude may similarly be the root of the sleep deprivation that the other Rafflesians surveyed experience, as Rafflesians are often found pushing boundaries in other areas of excellence. The school does recognise this possible cause of concern. Courses on time management are taught in the Raffles Leadership Programme and the Civics module, to help students juggle their many commitments better by giving them tips on how to prioritise tasks, maximise their efficiency and thus have more time for rest. Some of these tips include taking a 20-minute power nap in the afternoon to recharge, as certified wellness coach Elizabeth Scott recommends. Time blocking – or segmenting work with short gaps of play – can also increase productivity and help one to finish his or her work earlier. The importance of rest is undeniable, yet the Rafflesians surveyed find it almost impossible to get enough of this essential ingredient for a healthy lifestyle. With increased training and more practice, perhaps they will be able to better manage their lives and get those much needed ZZZs in the future.

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Year 5 - 6

FITNESS FIRST, RAFFLESIANS? WRITER Wang Liao Yinan (11S03F)

The PE Department’s Fitness Management Programme helps students to kick their personal fitness levels up a notch. There is no doubt that Rafflesians vary in terms of physical fitness. While our school certainly has no shortage of national athletes and decorated sportsmen, it is also true that not all of us can effortlessly pump away at the pull-up bars and chalk up perfect NAPFA scores. Sometimes, the struggles of a student trying to obtain a bronze NAPFA grade can be just as important as the sacrifices of the swimmer going for a national gold medal, if not more so. To help the former group, our Physical Education (PE) Department has introduced the Fitness Management Programme. The five to six-week module is held during regular PE lessons and caters to those students who failed to attain a pass in their NAPFA scores. Students are instructed on skills important in helping them not only to attain the pass grade but also to lead a healthy lifestyle to maintain their fitness level in future. First, with the aid of a PE teacher, the student identifies areas of weakness in their physical performance. Then a multitude

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of training methods are implemented, ranging from improved physical training techniques to developing a plan to better manage their exercise time. The PE teacher will also emphasise the importance of developing and maintaining good habits regarding fitness and exercise, encouraging students to make long-term adjustments to their lifestyle to help achieve their targets. The module has shown real success in changing the fitness levels of many students. An impressive example is that of Niccol Lee Zhi Kang (11S03H), who accomplished eight pull-ups after training for three weeks with the help of the scheme, although previously he could not do a single one. Niccol said that he was very impressed with how the programme had helped him develop the right techniques for training and that ‘it managed to produce real and solid results’ in his performance. ‘I simply would not have gained so much ground in so little time without the adequate guidance and support,’ he concluded. Another student on the programme, Ren Zhaolin (11A03A) also reflected that he saw ‘marked improvement during the course of the training module. It helped me reach goals I never believed myself capable of.’

Mr Venantius Chng, Assistant Department Head of the PE Department, concurred, ‘With the appropriate knowledge, tools, encouragement and guidance, we hope that students will develop this sense of ownership for their own health, fitness and physical well-being which will be sustained beyond RI and into their adult lives.’ Mr Chng noted that although a small percentage of students do not pass their NAPFA test, a fitness survey conducted by the PE Department showed that 97 per cent of the Year 6 cohort believe that personal fitness is important to them. Thus we can conclude that ‘our students are already fairly self-motivated to train and push themselves to appropriate fitness levels’. For students used to striving for academic excellence, improving their personal fitness levels is just another aspect of the holistic development expected of Rafflesians. With the Fitness Management Programme garnering tangible results, Mr Chng concluded by saying, ‘As teachers, it is truly rewarding when we see them exude a new air of confidence and sense of accomplishment when they finally achieve their personal targets.’


Sports & Health

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Year 1 - 4

THE RAFFLESIAN MUSIC GENRE WRITERS Bryan Chua (3A) Quek Zhi Hao (4E)

Get your groove down and find out about some of the rhythms and beats that Rafflesians enjoy. ‘My goal in life is to give to the world what I was lucky to receive ... the ecstasy of divine union through my music and my dance.’ – Michael Jackson Lady Gaga, Taylor Swift, Eminem – names synonymous with pop music and names familiar to Rafflesians. The influence of their music on youth culture and in RI has grown ever since the advent of the internet has made it much easier to access and share music. Play any pop song in school and it would be recognised almost immediately. In fact, during last year’s Year 3 Batch Barbeque, everyone spontaneously broke out into Justin Bieber’s ‘Baby’ when the song was played on the sound system.

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Music plays a huge role in RI’s student culture – Raffles Voices’ sell-out concerts draw large crowds, as does the Year 1 – 4 Rafflesian Spotlight, where participants perform covers of various popular songs. This annual competition, initiated by the RI Prefectorial Board, features both bands and solo performers. It is during Rafflesian Spotlight that Rafflesians who are not in a musical group CCA often showcase their talent. Many performers are from sports groups or uniformed groups. One example is water polo player Nathaniel Mah (4H), the winner of Rafflesian Spotlight 2010. He has his own YouTube page and hopes to follow the footsteps of other YouTube cover artists such as the popular USbased Sam Tsui. ‘My experience in Rafflesian Spotlight was truly enjoyable, as it was my first taste of a real large-scale competition,’ he says. ‘It definitely opened up the possibility of me becoming a music performer in the future.’

New sounds, new styles of music The RI music curriculum also helps to spark an interest in music among students. RI Guitar Ensemble member Samuel Teo (3A) developed a keen interest in music and guitar after he joined this CCA. He hasn’t looked back since. ‘In Year 1, when we were choosing our CCAs from a diverse range, I wanted to join a musical group to do something hip and cool. Guitar seemed to be the only option that struck me as fun and interesting.’ For Arjun Jayaraman (4H), a drummer in the RI Military Band, his CCA has exposed him to a range of music genres. ‘I was introduced to genres such as classical, blues, jazz and Latin. Playing the drums for these different genres is very difficult compared to rock music, which was my forte at first.’ Other than CCAs, the General Music Programme for Year 1 and 2 students also plays a strong role in nurturing a passion for music,


Arts & Asethetics as highlighted by both Samuel and Nathaniel. In Year 1, students are introduced to the guitar and keyboard, while in Year 2 they learn how to use the computer to produce songs and compose music. Samuel adds, ‘RI’s CCA and General Music Programme have helped to nurture a culture of music appreciation and music making in RI, where we learn how to play a variety of instruments and better understand different musical traditions. This in turn has enabled Rafflesians to become more musically sensitive people who are able to think and feel about music in a more perceptive and insightful way.’ Rock on, Rafflesians Some Rafflesians have moved on to greater things, like the band EXDEE, whose members are from the Class of 2010. Comprising guitarists Pua Yi Sin and Lenny Wee, bassist Eugene Gan, lead singer Marcus Lee and recent addition Chan Guan Wei, they have performed at various charity events and even been featured in the Straits Times. The band members met in RI and formed their own band for Rafflesian Spotlight back in 2007, according to Marcus, then went on to perform in various events in Year 5 and 6, including the Raffles Rock annual concert in 2009. EXDEE member Eugene echoes Samuel’s earlier comments about the Guitar Ensemble, even crediting his ensemble instructor for honing his guitar skills. Music in RI brings Rafflesians together, as seen in the Batch songs that each level from Year 1 to 4 shares, as well as during the various performances organised as part of the Year 1 – 4 Arts Exposure programme. For example, in Term 1, local a capella group Budak Pantai

came to school and performed for the Year 2 and Year 3 students during assembly. During the Year 3 Batch Barbeque, a group of Year 3 students formed a group to perform, despite not having any professional training or even being in a musical group CCA. This gung-ho attitude to come together for fun and entertain the batch drew cheers and applause that night. For those who wish to follow in the footsteps of people such as Nathaniel or EXDEE, Yi Sin has this to say: ‘The best way to keep learning and growing is that you recognise that there are others who are better, and that you can always strive to improve your performance. We record all our performances and review them to understand what we could have done better and what mistakes we made. In fact we usually cringe when we watch our performance on playback! I always say that it’s not skill but attitude that determines whether you make it or not.’ ‘And be authentic – no one likes posers,’ Marcus adds. ‘Don’t showboat and declare your greatness because there’s always someone better than you. Set your expectations high, and I mean super high, and identify every flaw that you have and work hard to improve. Too many a time have I seen people who are simply satisfied with what they have and remain stagnant despite the potential that they have. Keep working for the fruits of your labour, which when they ripen will be sweet.’ ‘I think music in itself is healing. It’s an explosive expression of humanity. It’s something we are all touched by. No matter what culture we’re from, everyone loves music.’ – Billy Joel

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12 / 2010 Singapore Science Olympiads Year 5 - 6

• Best Individual Performance / Best Team / 14 out of the 17 Gold Medals (Chemistry Team) • Best Individual Performance / Best Team / 5 out of 6 Gold Medals (Physics Team) • 4 out of 8 Gold Medals (Biology Team)

Green Wave Environmental Care Competition for Schools Year 1 - 4

• 1st Prize • 2 Merit Awards • 3 Commendation Awards

Schools Digital Media Awards Year 5 - 6

• Gold (Audio Category)

01 / 2011 ActionScript Awards Year 1 - 4

• 1st Prize • 2nd Prize

Lego League Singapore 2011 Year 1 - 4

• Gracious Professionalism Award • Innovative Design Award • Quality Design Robot Award

Singapore Young Physicists’ Tournament Year 1 - 6

• Top two positions in Category A • Top two positions in Category B

Harvard Model United Nations Year 1 - 4

• Honourable Mention (Individual)

Welcome to The Gold Standard, where we highlight some of our achievements over the last few months.

THE GOLD STANDARD EAGLE 38 EYE


The Gold Standard

02 / 2011 Ministry of Finance Budget Debate Year 5 - 6

• 1st Prize (Team)

National University of Singapore Challenge Shield Year 1 - 4

• Grand Champion

Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineering-NUS Robotics Competition Year 5 - 6

• Champion (Team)

Singapore Biomedical Olympiad Year 1 - 4

• • • •

National Inter-School Tennis Tournament (B Division Boys) Year 1 - 4

• Silver

Individual 1st Prize Individual 1st Runner-up 5 Gold Medals 7 Silver Medals

03 / 2011 2011 National Inter-School Basketball - South Zone Championship (B Division Boys) Year 1 - 4

• Gold

National Olympiad for Informatics Year 1 - 6

• • • • • •

National Inter-school Softball Championships Finals (B Division Boys) Year 1 - 6

• Gold

National Cross Country Finals Year 1 - 6

• • • •

National Inter-School Cricket Championship Finals (B Division Boys) Year 1 - 4

• Gold

Overall Second (Junior College Category) Overall Second (Individual) Special Prize - Youngest Medallist 2 Gold Medallists 1 Silver Medallist 4 Bronze Medallists

Gold (A Division Girls) Silver (A Division Boys) 5th (B Division Boys) Gold (C Division Boys)

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Editorial Team Teacher Advisors:

Mrs Heryanti Suhaimy Dr Alfiani Bte Fadzakir Mr Daniel Lim Mr James Koh Year 5 - 6:

Year 1 - 4: Contributors: Tan Kuan Hian (3A) Bryan Chua (3A) Andre Hui (3C) Gerald Tan (4D) Quek Zhi Hao (4E) Lionel Foon (4G) Soh Qi Rui (4K) Teng Hao (4K) Duranka Viran Jayasinghe (4L) Photographers: Chen Yuran (3B) Ang Qi Wei (3B) Yang Yingbo (3B) Vignes Muthu Kumaran (3E) Wong Shi Hwa (3L) Gong Haoran (3M) Matthew Yeo (3M) Lim Toh Han (4E) Josiah Kek (2P) Ryan Quek (4M) Reudi Chan (3F) See Wei Yang (3G) Tan Zong Sheng (3E) Cai Zequan (3J) Tan Tiag Yi (2C)

Jeremiah Choo (3F) Tay Yong Sheng (3Q) Hethav Sivakumar (2E) Wong Shi Hwa (3L) Lim Jin Jie (3B) Kevin Wang (2I) Isaac Siaw (2P) Thangavel Sharan (3P) Goh Khian Wei (1I) Chen Zheng Wei (4T) Nigel Gomes (2E) Tan Wei Ler (3Q) Sean Tsi (3Q) Wang Ziren (3F) Yeo Jay Sean (3P) Julius Sander (3I) Shi Shan (3D) Thomas Tay (3B) Arjun Jayaraman (4H) Darren Low (3I) Tan Rui Xuan (1G) Jason Peter Lim Tao-En (1M) Keane Chua (1G) Joachim Ng (1G) Ernest Low (2F) Benedict Ng (2I)

Raffles Press: Wang Liao Yinan (11S03F) Writers’ Guild: Anurak Saelaow Hao (11A01C) Leena Nair (11A01E) Contributors: April Chia (11S03G) Joel Ling (11S03M) Chen Xiaomin (11S03O) Gifford Tan (11S03R) Jia Wei (11S06R) Huang Yiheng (11S06T) Photographic Club: Daniel Cheong (11A01C) Brenda Thng (11S03M) Justin Doan (11S06C) Patrick Ang (11S06C) Mark Tan (10S06G) Lim You Sheng (11SO3I) Cham Thow Min Jerald (11S06C) Luo Xiangyu (11S06D) Doan Xuan Loc Nguyen (11S06C)

Published by Raffles Institution, Eagle Eye is a publication of the school following the reintegration of Raffles Institution and the junior college in 2009. This publication is written by current students, and includes articles from Year 1 – 6. Eagle Eye showcases the vibrancy of the people and programmes at Raffles Institution, and is distributed free to all current students, alumni, friends and benefactors of the school. For comments on the articles and feedback to the editorial team and change of mailing address, please email us at: comms@ri.edu.sg Designed by ampulets

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Printed on 100% recycled paper



Eagle Eye Issue 4