of Tanglin Trust School Vol 07 12/2010 MICA (P) 018/07/2010
Feature: On a Mission CSR: A Tale of Two Countries PTA: Looking Back at Term 1
I can hardly believe we are already at the start of Term 2. My first term at Tanglin has flown by and I now feel that I have a much better measure of the School and what makes it tick. Once again I would like to thank all those who have made me feel so welcome and who have made the settling in process so much easier as a result. I think it is fitting that in this issue of The Voice we focus on our Mission Statement, which I believe underpins all that we do at Tanglin and how we plan
Staff News Pink Ribbon Walk Introducing Dame Terry Jaggers!
On a Mission
Corporate Social Responsibility A Tale of Two Countries
Welcome to School!
14 12 16 18 20
Junior School Taking Responsibility
Senior School The Great Debate!
Sixth Form Genesis School
Showcase Art â€˘ Drama â€˘ Music
the way forward. Thank you to all who participated in the process of drafting the new statement. The last few weeks of Term 1 were packed with Christmas activities, starting with the very popular annual PTA Christmas Fair, which saw many families entering into the spirit of the season, and culminating in the traditional concert at St George’s Church, which I was proud to perform at as part of the staff/student vocal group ‘Six of One’. Performances of ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ along with the various year group concerts, provided wonderful entertainment and an opportunity to perform for many students. I don’t think it’s possible to fully appreciate the impact on a child’s life of performing to others. Friendships, team work, dealing with nerves, developing confidence, as well as musical and dramatic skills, are just some of the benefits - alongside having fun and creating special memories. In this issue once again we have editorial contributions from representatives across our community - students, teachers, parents and even Tanglin’s former CEO, Ron Stones, who I know many of you will remember. I hope this kind of community support helps to keep this magazine relevant and interesting and encourages others to come forward if they would like to contribute in some way! Thank
you to everyone for your valuable input, but especially to the following students who have undertaken their journalistic duties with enthusiasm and diligence: Christina Roed, Grace Roberts, James White, Hannah Atkinson, Rebecca Wagg, Aaron Smith, Harrison James and Alicia Hurmuses. Alongside the usual updates by each school, we are including an extended Book Reviews section which includes reviews on parenting books written by parents, which we believe will be of interest to other families, as well as advice from our student services team on how to handle leaving Singapore. Speaking of leaving, this is Jacqui Edmiston’s last issue as editor of The Voice and Head of Communications. Jacqui launched the magazine three years ago and set the standard very high. Her inimitable style and feel for the community shines through this, the web site and many other TTS publications. Jacqui’s professionalism, skills, team work and sense of humour will be greatly missed. The appreciation and thanks of everyone go to Jacqui as she plans a short break before returning to the UK with her family. Jacqui has been working with her replacement Katherine Massey for the last few weeks to ensure a smooth hand-over.
which has created some places for new students. Welcome to all new families; I hope you settle in quickly to life at TTS and that your children are happy and successful here. As always, we encourage you to look at the digital edition of The Voice which is available under ‘Quicklinks’ or ‘Useful Downloads’ on the School website. Please direct any feedback on the magazine - digital or printed - to email@example.com
Peter Derby-Crook, CEO
We had an unusually small number of families who left us at the end of last term
Sport Primary Update Season 1 Wrap up
Looking Back at Term 1
Student Services Leaving Singapore
The Last Word by Ronald Stones, OBE
Editor: Jacqui Edmiston Design & Layout: CleverBird + Jennie Anderson Contributors: Students, Staff, and PTA Photography: Jennie Anderson, Richard Ticehurst and Seah Slater Printer: Oz Print Services
“The Voice” herein refers to “The Voice of Tanglin Trust School”
Staff News 04
by Jacqui Edmiston, Head of Communications and Jennifer Anderson, Communications Executive
Whether you have been a member of the Tanglin community for years, or only a short amount of time, the likelihood is that you would have come across the two ladies pictured below. Kumari Manikam and Catherine Estabillo, Tanglin’s Front Desk Customer Service Officers, are the first point of contact for all visitors and most parents. Their main jobs include manning the busy switchboard, dealing with walk-in visitors, customer service, assisting the Finance and HR teams and much, much more.
A star in our midst!
Kumari started at TTS three years ago, after fifteen years as an air stewardess with Singapore Airlines and Jet Airways. After years of living out of a suitcase and waking up in a different city every day, Kumari wanted a job where she could come home each day and see her family. There was however one thing she couldn’t live without - a uniform! After over a decade of wearing a uniform, the self-confessed clothes addict couldn’t imagine getting up every morning ‘cracking her head’ trying to decide what to wear. She admits this played a part in accepting her role at TTS....! Catherine has only been with us for ten months but already feels like part of the family. She joined TTS from United Overseas Bank, where she was a Senior Officer for two and a half years. She made the move after she got married and wanted to spend more time at home. Both ladies enjoy the social office hours that come with working at a school as it gives them the freedom they need to enjoy their various hobbies. In her spare time Catherine enjoys photography, writing blogs and teaching the guitar to children; whilst Kumari loves music, playing ‘brain training’ games, classical ‘Kathak’ dancing and her latest hobby - talking to the baby in her tummy (Kumari’s first child - a beautiful baby girl - was born in the last week of term). Both agree that the best part of working at Tanglin is the children: “Seeing them every morning when I come to work just makes my day!” says Kumari and Catherine agrees: “Every time I walk in the School and see them running around, it makes me happy and encourages me to want to become a responsible parent one day.”
Tanglin Theatre executive Lovynn Kan, won KaraOK! K-Battle finals held at Singapore’s City Square Mall in mid November. Wowing the judges with her powerful voice, Lovynn rocked the house with Taiwanese diva A*mei’s ‘I Don’t Care About Love’ and walked away with a $1,000 cash prize, plus a trophy. She went on to represent Singapore at Hong Kong TVB’s International Chinese New Talent Singing Championship in December, where she competed with contestants from all around the region.
Pink Ribbon Walk
On ‘race day’ this year, over 3,200 participants transformed the East Coast Parkway into a sea of pink - many were dressed up, families and friends came together to walk in groups and the sudden downpour at the end of the race did nothing to dampen the spirits of those involved! To find out more about the BCF you can visit www.bcf.org.sg.
Introducing Dame Terry Jaggers! Human Resources Director Terry Jaggers is not known for his outrageous attire, at least not within the confines of his day job here at Tanglin. But outside of school, Terry has been known to don a frock and lashings of lippy, all in the name of entertainment! Terry’s interest in acting developed in his early twenties, when he was selected (not at that stage for his acting prowess, but because of his height) to deliver three lines in a local production by a UK amateur dramatics group called the Tetherdown Players. With his appetite for treading the boards whetted, Terry went on to perform in a variety of productions with this group, including Ratty in ‘Toad of Toad Hall’ and the Ghost of Christmas Present in Charles Dickens’ ‘A Christmas Carol’. From here he went on with others to form a drama group, which is still running today, 30 years later. Over the ensuing years, Terry’s repertoire has expanded to include a variety of roles, including playing the part of Bill Sykes in ‘Oliver’, Mr Squeers in a musical production of ‘Nicholas Nickleby’, the Mad Hatter in ‘Alice in Wonderland’ (performed in front of Singapore’s President Nathan) and numerous
reprises as an Ugly Sister in ‘Cinderella’. He has most recently performed in Alan Ayckbourn’s comedy ‘Confusions’ and the Christmas pantomime ‘Sleeping Beauty’, both produced by the Stage Club, Singapore. He particularly enjoys comedy - especially the fun of the traditional pantomime with its interactivity and audience participation. As he says, he is prepared to ‘give anything a go’….. When asked what appeals to him about his chosen hobby, he talks about the fact that, apart from the enjoyment he gets from entertaining people, acting allows him to step out of his professional life in a way that little else can. He also believes that the confidence drama has given him through having to perform as a different person on stage - often a long way out of his comfort zone - has helped him professionally. Add to that the ‘buzz’ of performing in front of a live audience and the satisfaction that comes from working closely as a team and you can understand why Terry is hooked!
In early October, a group of enthusiastic Tanglin staff and students took part in the Breast Cancer Foundation (BCF) 5km Pink Ribbon Walk/Run, in support of Breast Cancer Awareness month. This is just one of the many events organised by BCF as part of their Awareness & Education Programme. BCF aims to reach out to as many people as possible, irrespective of gender, profession or ethnic group and hopes that by doing so, more people will not only become aware of breast cancer and related issues, but will also help to spread the message that breast cancer is curable if detected early.
Feature On a Mission 06
by Peter Derby-Crook, CEO and Jacqui Edmiston, Head of Communications Upon arriving at Tanglin I was keen to understand what the School stood for and what the School meant to the community. I found lots of clues and tangible evidence that this was clearly a proud, loyal and caring community. It wasn’t difficult either to see very high levels of achievement in both external examinations and internal assessments. It was reassuring to notice that the School was also concerned about progress at all levels and that everyone was recognised and valued. I found the range and variety of clubs, teams and activities available bewildering for a few weeks until I fully understood how they worked and how to register my children. It was noticeable that participation levels were high and that enjoyment was a key element, but I did also experience firsthand a healthy competitive edge as TTS teams performed well in local and international events. I witnessed a vibrant community with lots of activity and participation from students, staff and parents (including the PTA). The conscience of TTS was clearly visible through the incessant fundraising activities and people volunteering to help others. I understood fairly quickly why this school had such a good reputation. That’s not to say that everything was perfect, but there were many things to make me very proud of my new position as CEO. As I was looking and listening, I tried to understand what the essence of TTS was. What is it that we all believe in? What are our priorities? What is our reference point when making decisions and taking the School forward? I was very happy to see that the Aims and Values of the School had been reviewed through the community during the previous term and were in place. I used these in some of my early presentations to staff and letters to parents.
Why are we here?
However, the Mission Statement was still a ‘work in progress’ and needed to be completed and approved by the Board of Governors. This was my opportunity to meet with all the different elements that make up our community and to ask ‘What does Tanglin Trust School mean to you?’ Supported by Cecilia Handel, our newly appointed Director of Development, I set about meeting with and listening to groups of staff (teaching and non-teaching), students and parents. The meetings themselves were fun and interesting with some thought-provoking discussions (particularly with the thirty-one strong Infant Student Council!). The feedback helped to draft a Mission Statement for the Board of Governors to discuss and consider.
Clearly the first goal in agreeing a Mission Statement is to understand who we are. As John Yip, newly appointed Board member and former Director of Education for the Singapore Ministry of Education and CEO/Executive Director of the Singapore Institute of Management, so ably explains: “First, we need to underscore the point that TTS is functioning and thriving in the Singapore environment. As a learning institution, it cannot be like an ‘island’ isolated from the society in which it operates, but will need to reach out, not just to the British community whom it serves, but also to the larger Singapore society... In this way, TTS will be not just another British system school here, but a truly international school with a global outlook and a good reputation in this part of the world. TTS is set up to serve the educational needs of children of British and other parents wanting a British-based education system. Whilst this is clearly useful for those seeking a seamless transition to another British-based system elsewhere or back home in the UK, increasingly TTS is becoming more international in that it also takes in many pupils of other nationalities who believe that a British-based system will see them through to good universities and subsequently good careers. TTS is seen as a caring school that sets high standards for its charges to achieve. TTS is a place where children nurture an enquiring mind, develop their intellect, grow to be persons of good character, become socially adept and adaptable, learn to believe in themselves, and to aspire for greater things in life.”
A Mission Statement...
Peter and Cecilia met with student representatives from throughout their school. Their feedback was both insightful and valuable - read on to find out more. SENIOR
The Senior School Student Council were amongst the first to meet with the CEO. Whilst clearly the students were all on their best behaviour, it was impressive to see them sharing their thoughts on what Tanglin means to them and listening to each other’s points of view. Many of the students referred to TTS as an ‘extended family’; some of those present had attended schools in other countries and they contrasted their experiences with the welcome they received on joining TTS. They talked about how international TTS is and how they are still in touch with their friends who have left the School and live in other countries. One member said that he felt privileged to know people from so many countries. As regards academic rigour, the students said they felt that everyone was given the opportunity to succeed in their own area of strength. They recognised the strength of the teachers at Tanglin and also the strength of the academic results, but said they felt that if academia was not somebody’s strong point, then they would still have the chance to excel in other things. They also felt that TTS was a place where you are encouraged to be your own person, to accept responsibility and to be independent. Some of the older council members mentioned that perhaps their strongest memories of the School were the amazing school trips they had been on, ranging from their Y4 visit to Pulau Ubin (with an over night stay in Changi) to trips to Vietnam and Cambodia. They mentioned the facilities and how lucky they felt to have things like a sports field and recording studio.
- Is designed to provide direction and thrust to an organisation, an enduring statement of purpose. - Acts as an invisible hand that guides the people in the organisation. - Explains the organisation’s reason for being, and answers the question, “Why are we here?” - Should serve as a practical reminder of what we’re all about. - Should be relevant: instantly memorable by students and parents, to whom it means something real.
The Junior and Infant students also had plenty to say!
Q: What does Tanglin mean to you?
I like the school a l l i lot. I am w l n i k i . sure ma e l e v p e g rything u n ny peopl a w d about it. e do. I T e gro my ol how all t I l i k e i n h h e l p emt t e r t h a nc r y o n m y get lost. Ine classes are in a circle sothye junior school infant s ou cann b I did ol. s i c ot h o o t l t h I l but f scho e classes line. Th at is goo are all in o o d too. o a h y c a s irst d f TTS is very safe. You can I like
do anything and they are hers c Art, Science, Maths. a e T . d n i always behind you. are k s kind to Everyone is friendly and itâ€™s i e e r n e o h y Ever ave been etimes challenging. h m I o I have found a . s u I . . yo sery. d fed up l The r u n n l e Sixt f a e c lot of friends. t o n y I i r l s m e s n n e o e l are m rs and h feel this happ Art. Y10 y ro ke Part s l When acher. I li e i c m ular o d a te e lives ly ls in m Jack, w . ho y co n I look up to my friend Max because he is always
doing things and standing up and talking to people.
(Max, who is sitting next to him, looks rather pleased)
The teachers keep the boys quiet when they are annoying me.
We of lots ool. e v a h ch s t a e. r s e d h n w frie e every ar They
I like it because there are Wednesday activities and you get to do things like cooking, hip hop and football.
We have lots of good teachers .
Our Mission Statement
â€˜Tanglin Trust School Singapore has a long tradition of providing British-based learning with an international perspective. At Tanglin we strive to make every individual feel valued, happy and successful. Responsibility, enthusiasm and participation are actively encouraged and integrity is prized. Working together in a safe, caring yet stimulating environment, we set high expectations whilst offering strong support, resulting in a community of lifelong learners who can contribute with confidence to our world.â€™
The result of all this work is, I believe, something that we can all relate to. It will be the cornerstone of the School moving forward and a very useful reference point for development plans. It is also a statement from the community about what we stand for and our priorities. Tanglin Trust School is a fine community and we have now clearly articulated to ourselves and the world what we are and why we are here.
CSR A Tale of Two Countries 10
by Aaron Smith, Y12.9, Rebecca Wagg, Y12.1 and Natasha Watson, PE Teacher and Cambodian Trip Leader In this issue, we report on two trip destinations, Ladakh, in Northern India and Cambodia. Excursions to each of these locations have been a much anticipated feature on the Tanglin Senior calendar for some years now and each continues to capture the hearts and minds of those privileged enough to travel there. Read on to find out more. Update on Ladakh
For four years now, Tanglin Sixth Form students have been travelling to Ladakh in the northern regions of India. Each year, students visit to explore the stunning, mountainous scenery that Ladakh has to offer. They also interact with the local community and strengthen the tight bond with Lamdon School, located in the village of Leh. During the past few years, Tanglin students and Lamdon School have worked together on a number of projects. One of the most beneficial things that Tanglin has helped to achieve is the improvement of dental hygiene, by introducing toothbrushes and teaching the community how to maintain healthy teeth, particularly necessary since the recent introduction of sweets and sugar based foods to the remote area. The dental project was followed up with an attempt to create ‘A Greener Ladakh’ through a tree planting scheme. This benefitted Tanglin as it enabled us to counter carbon emissions created by school students travelling to Ladakh. Just as significantly the trees will also provide long term support for the local community. The Poplar trees that have been planted will mature in 12 to 15 years allowing them to be sold and produce a stable income for the school and the surrounding area; so far over 5,000 trees have been planted.
Responding to a tragedy
In August of last year, flash floods ripped through the area of Ladakh. The devastation has affected 25,000 people in Leh and the surrounding villages. Ten to twelve villages were completely cut off due to collapsed bridges and
blocked roads caused by immense land slides. Whilst 170 bodies were found, hundreds still remain unaccounted for. It was a tragedy of significant magnitude and as a school Tanglin was keen to provide as much support as possible to the local community. During the first half of last term, many fundraising activities were completed with the objective of raising money in order to fund the repair of homes and most importantly, in the short term, to provide shelter in the rapidly approaching harsh winter, where temperatures can reach as low as -30°.
$3,500 was raised through the ‘East2West’ music concert, masterminded by music teacher Kim Kelly last September. TTS was also keen to involve students in as many activities as possible, not only to raise money, but also to raise an awareness of the Ladakh projects across the School. In
the Junior School, Y3 raised $1,400 from selling donated books. Individual groups of students came together to donate pocket money or run bake sales and one student raised $250 from a sponsored silence! ‘Canvas for a Cause’ offered Senior School students the opportunity to express their concern for Ladakh in the form of art, in exchange for a small donation. Another popular initiative involved the sale of wrist bands for a minimum donation of $2. What stood out in all the projects was the willingness of all the TTS community to contribute, so that in a small way the pain of the Lamdon students could be alleviated. Together with generous cheque donations, we raised more than $33,000. Tanglin has been privileged to be involved with the community of Lamdon and we are looking forward to our next visit in June. We hope that they are soon on the road to recovery.
Trip Report – changing lives in Cambodia
An adventure of a lifetime began for 105 Y11 students in July 2010 as we descended on Cambodia, excited about spending a busy week ahead. Split into three groups, the students were looking forward to participating in a wide array of activities, which included building houses, helping out at an orphanage and channelling our spiritual side at the beautiful temples of Siem Reap.
During the week, each group had the opportunity to visit the local orphanage ‘KaisKids’, situated two hours outside of Phnom Penh. Here the students really got involved; some taught some fantastic lessons, whilst others got involved in improvements to the physical surroundings, working hard in teams to plant trees, paint rooms and even build a path. We also took out over 50 donation bags full of clothes, shoes, stationery and various other items to donate to the orphans - thank you Tanglin! Having been there in person, I can vouch for how happy the children were to see us and how extremely grateful they were for all the items we brought out. Students then visited the Tabitha Foundation, a non-profit organisation which aims to help suffering families in Cambodia. Here they worked hard to build a staggering 24 houses in total for small communities who had until then been living in basic, mud houses. After many hours of hard work, building in teams, we handed over the completed houses to those families and the sheer delight on their faces was incredibly heart warming. To know this changed many local Cambodian lives and to see them so happy was something that all the students and teachers alike will remember forever. This trip could not have happened without the hard work and generosity of teachers, parents and students, who supported the various fundraising initiatives throughout the year. We are particularly grateful to former TTS Governor Deirdre Lew and her team who organised the Cambodia Curry Auction, which raised a record amount this year.
Student perspective by Jessica Thompson, Y12.4 Going to Cambodia was one of the most rewarding experiences I have had at Tanglin. For the first time, we were the ones responsible for fundraising and this time we actually saw our efforts make a difference in people’s lives. Building houses in the heat was definitely a challenge, but the joy on the faces of the families as they moved themselves and their meagre possessions into them made it all worthwhile. However, working in the orphanage was definitely the highlight of my trip. Getting to interact with the children was loads of fun, and seeing how happy they were despite the hardships they had all been through was inspiring and humbling. We worked incredibly hard that day, but it was very worthwhile because it immediately made a positive impact on their lives. We did fit in some fantastic tourist activities too – wandering through the night markets in Siem Reap and Angkor and marvelling at the ancient temple of Angkor Wat enabled us to see a part of the world we probably would not get to otherwise experience. All in all it was a really memorable experience.
Infant School Welcome to School! 12
by James White, Y12.1 and Hannah Atkinson, Y12.2 One of the biggest priorities of the Infant School, in the weeks prior to the first day of the school year and throughout the first half-term, is to provide students, staff and parents with the help and support they need to settle into a new environment, be it a new year-group, a new school or a new country. From Nursery students starting school for the first time, to parents and teachers facing a new routine, Tanglin recognises the difficulties faced by all ages having to adjust to a different daily lifestyle. A whole new world
Starting at the Infant School as a Nursery student can be a great challenge. For many, this will be their first experience of the school environment, as a transition is made to a vast new campus, and a whole new way of learning is undertaken. It is often found that the best way for children to adjust to the learning environment is through time and experience. However, to help students prepare, Tanglin hosts an Open Day for all Nursery applicants before the start of the school year, where the children can start to familiarise themselves with the location and their teachers. Once the school year commences, Tanglin likes to take a step-by-step approach to introduce students to a new class and timetable. For the first four to five weeks there is an alternating programme for Nursery students, where only half of each class comes in at a time. A similar staggered approach is taken for Reception students, who wait a few weeks before stepping up from a three to a six hour day. Tanglin also takes care that no class or student is ever pushed into moving into a full day if
they are unready - flexible timings can be organised with the class teacher. For students new to the school in Y1 and 2, buddies within their year group are assigned to help them feel welcome and understand the locations and procedures of Tanglin for the first week or so. This is a great way to integrate new students into the year group and is a system greatly valued at Tanglin. For those already in the School, before the new school year even begins, Tanglin is preparing Infant students for the next year to come. Throughout the third term, students take several trips to their future classrooms to meet their new teacher and future Head of Year. Perhaps the biggest step of all is from Y2 to Y3, the transition from Infant to Junior School, which the third term of the Y2 school year is dedicated to. The children partake in many activities, such as a visit to the Junior Library, eating in the Junior Canteen, an assembly with Head of Junior School, David Ingram, as well as meeting all the new faces of the Junior School and exploring the building. Across the Infant School, it is often found that once children are involved in school activities, their initial nerves and difficulties
of the first term are soon overcome. However, counselling services are readily available for children having difficulty adjusting to the new environment, and Learning Support can also offer a helping hand. At Tanglin, the Infant School ensures a personal and socially based curriculum in the early years, for perhaps the most important lessons learnt at this stage involve working together, and developing those social skills vital for later life. For some students, this is where the challenge lies, and Tanglin Infant School does its best to ease this transition.
Bridging the gap
The Infant School also recognises the importance of integrating parents into the Tanglin community and providing all the information and reassurance they need to support their children. Parents have an opportunity to meet Head of School, Geraldine Chandran and their childâ€™s year leader before the summer holidays to allay any early anxieties about the transition and familiarise them with the school environment. However, many families do not arrive in Singapore until the academic year commences, therefore the Infant calendar is packed with useful
Just one week in, parents are invited to an Information Evening, where teachers across the school deliver a presentation to explain expectations, the daily routine and communicate key dates. Here, they can ask questions, acquaint themselves with the parent body and raise any initial concerns with their child’s teacher. Numeracy and literacy workshops are held throughout September where parents can actively engage in their child’s education and pick up tips, enabling them to help with learning at home. Later in the term, they can reflect on their child’s transition at parent-teacher conferences and review their child’s progress with their teacher.
The School also extends support to the many teachers that join Tanglin at the beginning of every year. Fully acquainting all new staff with the School setting, their roles and responsibilities before term begins is imperative to ensuring a pupil’s introduction to school life flows as smoothly as possible. With this in mind, teachers arrive in Singapore two weeks ahead of the new academic year, affording them plenty of ‘acclimatisation time’. Staff join Tanglin from all over the world, therefore many are understandably overwhelmed at first by Tanglin’s sheer size and diversity. The induction process has been continually refined over many years in order that the requirements of every individual are satisfied. From day one, teachers are encouraged and supported as they adjust to life at Tanglin. When they eventually arrive, they attend numerous meetings and assemblies from which they learn more about the school ethos, before heads of faculty convey pertinent information about the curriculum and human resources. Following a series of social gatherings and teambuilding activities tailored to bring the community together, everyone is fully prepared to welcome the new Infant students to School.
Meanwhile, the PTA plays a massive role in bridging the gap between parents and teachers, organising coffee mornings where they offer “handy hints” about life in Singapore. Drop-in sessions allow parents to share their anxieties and seek advice from others in a similar situation. The PTA has an open door policy regarding parent helpers and operates a rota system allowing mums to partake in cooking, reading, art, maths and phonic games with their children on a regular basis. Class representatives meet regularly with other parents, providing a highly effective support mechanism, and relay any common issues that surface on to the Senior Management Team.
Supporting new staff
Tanglin also takes into consideration that, as the School has expanded over the years, the presence of increasing numbers of older students can be an unfamiliar sight to many Infant students. As a consequence, Tanglin ensures that a good relationship between the age groups is established from the very beginning. Senior and Junior buddies are paired up with Infant counterparts, who make regular visits to play and read with the children. This has proved to be a rewarding experience for all concerned, giving the Infant students a sense of ease and confidence in such company, as well as providing good role-models for the younger students to aspire to.
meetings and activities throughout the first term to help everybody over the first hurdles of primary education.
Junior School Taking Responsibility 14
By James White, Y12.1 Over the past few years, there has been a major shift in focus towards empowering pupils to take on positions of responsibility in the Junior School. Whereas in the past, this was the preserve of an elite few, the benefits of extending duties across the student body are now well recognised; not only does it promote greater citizenship, but it also instills a sense of practical thought and self management in children at a young age. As a result, students are offered a wide variety of roles which accommodate a broad range of different personalities and interests. These tasks are carried out alongside the contribution every pupil now makes to their class, whether they choose to take ownership of art displays, reading notices or returning the register, each task helps to shape every child into a well rounded, independently minded individual. The Junior School is constantly refining its positions of responsibility to cater for its changing needs. Whilst the Senior Management Team maintains a dialogue with individual faculties, the pupils also provide regular feedback based on their experiences.
The student council in particular has expanded considerably, now encompassing more pupils than ever before and their opinions about how to enhance our school further are highly valued. At fortnightly meetings, members discuss issues raised within the student body with senior staff, acting as mediators between pupils and teachers. Since every year group is represented, these sessions not only offer teachers an opportunity to listen to views from across the School, but allow students themselves to gain an invaluable insight into different aspects of school life. At the beginning of the academic year, candidates deliver a short speech outlining their credentials, before their peers vote for one boy and one girl per year group. Anybody is eligible to apply to the student council, providing they have not previously been elected. Identifiable by their distinctive badges, council members act as role models for the rest of the School. Meanwhile, the roles of house and sports captains always receive widespread support from Junior students. Despite the serious commitment needed, there are usually so many willing applicants that ballots must again be held to single out the best candidates. Alongside their vice captains, house and sports captains are expected to carry out a multitude of important jobs, from making announcements in assemblies to producing advertisements for upcoming events. They remain in close contact with their Head of House throughout the school year, who divides up tasks amongst them. Along with Junior charity representatives, one of their key duties is to promote charities supported by the School, under the guidance of Ch@t (Charities at Tanglin) Administrator, Barbara Mason. Moreover, their input is vital to the success of interhouse sports days and swimming galas, since not only do they help the PE department to organise activities, but they stir up a healthy competitive spirit in their comrades. As an added bonus, house and sports captains have privileged access to the house room, making them the envy of the whole school!
Quotes from Junior Listeners “Being a Junior Listener means a lot to me because not only do I get to help people but I get to know the rest of the Tanglin community.” “I feel honoured to be a Junior Listener because I love having the opportunity to help people with their problems.” “It is a wonderful job and I love doing it. Seeing people smile really makes my day.” “I like being a Junior Listener because it gives me an opportunity to help and listen to people.”
Quotes from Student Council “I care about the Junior School a lot and have lots of great ideas to make our school even better.” “I’m looking forward to listening to your ideas and problems and I’ll try my best to help you.”
In addition, the Junior School has developed a wealth of new positions to cater for its growing number of pupils in recent years. Y5 and 6 can now apply to join the Junior Listeners, a counselling service launched in 2007 which teaches children to mediate between groups and offer their peers valuable support and assistance. They discuss issues such as peer pressure, homework stresses and friendship strains with anyone who approaches them with a dilemma. Listeners take turns to fulfill their duties in the playground, where their white hats make them easily distinguishable to fellow pupils. Students report that the opportunity to vent their worries without fear of judgement is both reassuring and boosts their morale, while the Listeners themselves learn how to be caring, proactive and considerate members of society. This year alone, over 80 applicants applied for the programme, which speaks volumes about its popularity. The Junior School also operates several initiatives targeted at less outgoing children. Students can now volunteer to be library or ICT monitors, enabling them to play an active role in looking after the school environment. Junior Librarian, Barbara Philip, distributes administrative tasks amongst her team, who discover more about the library’s referencing system and how books are classified as they complete their errands. Meanwhile, ICT monitors are responsible for the upkeep of computer pods during lunchtimes. They frequently assist students in lower years unsure about how to approach an assignment, often saving pupils time finding their subject materials.
Furthermore, Tanglin now possesses its own ‘Green Team’, a dedicated energy conservation group founded three years ago. Participants work together in order to promote recycling initiatives and power saving strategies, with the ultimate goal of making the Junior School a more environmentally friendly place. Whilst Tanglin maintains its time-honoured pastoral roles, it is the pupils’ unrelenting enthusiasm to embrace forward-thinking projects like these which will allow student positions of responsibility to continue expanding.
Senior School The Great Debate! 16
by Grace Roberts, Y10.5 whilst the opposition took the view of the The skills of debating are transferable, whether you are pro-choice committee. The passion and commitment that came out of debates speaking in public, venturing such as this one made it difficult for the into Law or English, or simply floor sometimes to make a decision on building up your confidence the motion. However passionate the teams became though, it was crucial to to excel in your school listen to the other team and note down community. The English the points that the opposition gave, in department here at Tanglin order to rebut. Rebuttal was a challenge started off the school year for many students and some even said with a debating programme it was the hardest part of the debate. However, most rose to the challenge and devised to capture the attention of students in Y7-10. gave as good as they got. The topics ranged from the humorous to the contentious, The Great Debate After many confrontational English but significantly, the skills lessons, the challenge of ‘The Great used were consistent and effective.
The debating programme involved something new for the English department, as the students were taught the basic skills of presentation and rebuttal through a video made by enthusiastic students in Y7. The video involved the students taking up the various debating positions, including the chair, the proposition and the opposition. English teacher David Roberts fronted the video and explained the concepts behind the various debating terms, giving us words and phrases which could be used in the debates that we would be involved in. The Y7s’ attempts at acting as the ‘floor’ were admirable and entertaining, as they highlighted the skills that needed to be perfected for an interesting and lively debate. The students’ skills were tested and each and every student in Y7-10 was given the chance to ‘run the other team into the ground’. This was the task that the proposition or opposition had to face in order to be victorious in their particular debate. One of the most popular and controversial topics that the students tackled was the abortion debate, carried out by Y10. The proposition adopted the mind-set of pro-life organisations,
Debate’ was put forward to the students in each of the year-groups. The Great Debate took place in the atrium of the English Department, based in the new Sixth Form Centre, and involved the best debaters from the entire year group discussing a particular motion that was given to them. In this section, the debate that caused the most argument for Y10 students was the controversial death penalty motion. It allowed all students to venture into an unknown area and put their persuasive techniques to full effect. The students that partook in the Great Debate had to be prepared to debate both sides of the argument as they were only told which side they would be assigned to when they arrived, thus
The whole year-group sat and watched the Great Debate intently and participated as the floor. The debaters received intelligent comments from the students of the floor and some of the debaters were stunned by some of the remarks! Although in a professional debate, they are not typically allowed to rebut the floor, some debaters were so fanatical and ardent about their designated topic that they felt the urge to defend their stance. After four weeks of successful debating, the English department asked for the opinions of the participants. The feedback was published in a survey on the Virtual Learning Environment which was accessible to all year groups that participated. 96% of the students involved said that they enjoyed the debating process and 38% wanted to take their skills further at the debating club.
Sleeping at School?
The project concluded with a show debate in the school assembly. The topic that was chosen for the Senior School assembly was ‘Should nap time be introduced into the senior school?’ The best debaters from Y7-10 were gathered together and a debating team was formed to display the progress that the students had made. The hilarious anecdotes and intriguing suggestions that came out of the debate had the entire Senior School enjoying the wonders of debating and proved that the Great Debate was not only entertaining but educational too. The debating programme enabled students to greatly improve their powers of persuasion as well as their ability to argue their cases, whatever the subject matter. The ability to look at a topic from a different perspective also gave us a unique opportunity to view both sides of an argument. Quick thinking was pushed to its limits, with interesting and insightful rebuttals that were put forward in a formal and concise manner. Above all, the debating programme has helped to develop confidence throughout the participating year groups, helping individuals not only to flourish as public speakers, but also to take away a new found sense of self assurance that will lend itself to all areas of learning.
Work Experience Day, 30 November 2010 As part of the developing Careers Education programme here at Tanglin, 30 November was designated as ‘Work Experience Day’ for students in Y10 and 11. Over 100 different companies and organisations, from Bodyshop to Unilever, Deloittes to Intel, ESPN to Expat Living, Cargill to Cadbury, offered an extraordinary diversity of experiences. Through their placements, students were able to gain a much better understanding of the ‘world of work’, as well as an insight into the kinds of skills and attitudes required by employers. They were very enthusiastic about their experiences and in some cases, made good contacts for potential future work opportunities. In order to make the exercise as ‘real as possible’, students were encouraged to take public transport (not taxis) to their workplace; as far as we know, they all made it to the right place at the right time! A big thank you to all the parents who helped with this project by offering work experience.
allowing the students to experience the spontaneous nature of a true debate. The research and information that came out in the speeches was the work of the entire year-group as all students had been advised to assist the debaters and help make their speeches as persuasive and powerful as possible.
Sixth Form Genesis School 18
by Christina Roed, Y13.1 and Jacqui Edmiston, Head of Communications
Over the past year, a group of TTS sixth form students has worked very closely with the Genesis School for Special Education in Singapore as part of the CAS programme.
shaping them individually so they can have the opportunities in life that they deserve.
How can we help?
The Genesis School is for children of all ages, who have conditions that prevent them from receiving the attention they need in a mainstream school. These children are in no way unintelligent and still have the potential to succeed if they are given the opportunity. This is what Tanglin students help them achieve. Both Tanglin Trust School and Genesis believe that every child has the right to an education and through our own contributions we are able to support Genesis by helping them achieve their aspirations. The students are encouraged to grow as people and to interact with others, through participation in fun games and exercises that are designed to build relationships.
Interacting with the Genesis School has also been extremely beneficial for the students at Tanglin, teaching them to be more accepting and open to all individuals. For many, it was challenging to interact with and be friends with someone who was different, but overcoming our fears has been so rewarding. We have seen how our presence is appreciated by another person and we have been able to watch them grow. The cool disassociation of the words â€˜Service Placementâ€™ no longer aptly describe what our relationship with Genesis has become. It is about the bonds we have forged with these children, who are reliant on us to help them develop the skills that an academic curriculum does not encompass - skills they need to function in the everyday world.
The children at Genesis deserve respect from those around them, not because they are disabled, but because they try so hard to achieve more than they have been told they can. Their attitudes towards overcoming challenges are inspiring, proving that the only true disability in life is a negative attitude. Genesis provides them with the environment to succeed,
Our focus is on teaching the children how to interact with one another and also how to deal with social situations. Everyday tasks which we take for granted, such as coming to school, going to the store or meeting new people, are, for many of the children at Genesis, major challenges. The children suffer from conditions such as Autism, ADHD and Cerebral
Palsy; each illness is very different and mainstream schools cannot cater for their needs. Attending mainstream school can make the children feel different to their peers - sometimes other children become frustrated and angry because they donâ€™t understand them - and this in turn may result in suffering and feelings of not belonging. We are able to help the Genesis children overcome these problems by building their confidence in social situations. From accompanying the children to the shopping centre, to making Christmas cards with them, we are able to encourage the students to become more extroverted and to enjoy being in the company of others. A particularly important initiative which we arranged, involved taking the Genesis students on outings around Singapore, where they had to leave the comfort of familiarity and deal with using public transport as well as being in a public place. This was also a challenge for us, as we too were in an entirely new situation, having to be completely responsible for the students in our care. These activities are very important, as the children are learning skills that they will be able to use every day, making tasks that they find intimidating and scary something they feel they can cope with calmly.
A social perspective
Learning disabilities are a very relevant social issue, as there are still many families that refuse both to acknowledge them and to give their children the support they need. To be in an environment where one feels misunderstood and ashamed for not meeting expectations is not conducive to any child’s development. Yet many children still suffer through mainstream schooling or simply do not receive an education. Those who help at Genesis are forced to consider this every time they visit. Gaining understanding of a disabled child’s personality and seeing that, despite their disabilities, they are unique and vibrant people, is very thought provoking. As a result, many of us now want to help not just with the weekly visits, but also by getting involved in fundraising for the Genesis School.
Whilst we believe that our contribution to Genesis is extremely valuable, there is also a lot that we can be grateful for too. I myself feel that I have grown personally from the experience and have also gained an insight into an important social issue. Compassion and kindness are virtues that will aid anyone, regardless of career choice and there is no better way to acquire them than building purposeful relationships with the children at Genesis.
Singapore’s 6th Annual THIMUN Conference Tanglin was proud to take part in Singapore’s 6th Annual THIMUN Conference which took place on the 23-27 November 2010 at the Hwa Chong Institution. THIMUN (The Hague International Model United Nations) is a United Nations simulation workshop that ‘aims to educate participants about civics, current events, effective communication, globalisation and multilateral diplomacy. Participants research a country, take on roles as diplomats, investigate international issues, debate, deliberate, consult, and then develop solutions to world problems.’ (Source: Wikipedia) The Secretary General, Anja Sophia Gullerfelt from Dubai International School, spoke to all delegates in the opening ceremony about “reaffirming faith in Human Rights” as a main aim of this year’s conference, which had the theme of ‘Good Governance striving for transparency and equity in government’. Dr Chesterton, the guest speaker at the ceremony
declared, “I learned the most about my country by not being in it! It forced me to see my country from another’s perspective.” With schools participating from across Asia, Europe and USA, including Dubai, Thailand, Malaysia, Brunei, Beijing, Shanghai, Yangon, Taichung, Manila, Tokyo and Switzerland, students were able to gain exactly that - a truly multinational perspective and experience. Over the course of the four day conference, the 24 Tanglin sixth form ‘delegates’ represented all the committees (Disarmament and International Security; Economic and Financial; Social, Humanitarian and Cultural; Administration and Budgetary; and Legal) as well as the International Court of Justice. They were involved in lobbying sessions, giving key speeches, submitting resolutions as well as being interviewed by the Press Corps and delivering pivotal contributions in the International Court of Justice. Students who took part in THIMUN were urged to have
fun and push the limits of what is possible but also to avoid the ‘completely unrealistic’. It was a hugely successful conference and described by one delegate as, “the highlight of our academic year.” All in all students learned to distinguish reality from idealism, weigh up political and cultural factors and to develop real practical solutions to the problems faced by ordinary people in their everyday lives.
Showcase: Art • Drama • Music
Infant and Junior Art and Design by Deirdre Dunstan, Head of Primary Art The Art and Design curriculum continues to be delivered through cross curricular links, with a range of processes being visited over the term, in every year group. The projects and opportunities for art learning are constantly being reviewed by both teachers and children, reflecting the very current emphasis on the creative curriculum. In addition to class based activities, this has been a busy term. Infant and Junior Schools - The Portrait Project
The term started with a whole school drawing focus, involving all year groups from Nursery to Y6. Looking at images of themselves in mirrors or in photographs, every child drew a self portrait. There are now over 1500 delightful portraits exhibited across the Infant and Junior Schools celebrating the heartbeat of Tanglin, the children.
Infant Artist Residency - Big Birds!
In conjunction with the Infant Library, the Art Department recently hosted Polly Dunbar for a week’s residency. Polly, a wonderful artist/illustrator from England, has illustrated many popular children’s books, one of which, ‘Flyaway Katie,’ is where the inspiration for the Big Birds came from. All of Y1 worked for a week preparing exciting surfaces and materials through printing, painting and collage. The following week, 64 very talented children worked alongside Polly and Head of Primary Art, Deirdre Dunstan, creating huge 3D decorated birds which are now adorning the Infant Library.
Y2 have all visited the Junior Art room this term and have taken part in preparing an installation destined for the Infant corridor later this academic year. ‘Wild Flowers’, in response to the work of Claude Monet, is a collaborative piece of hanging art, using wax crayons and rolls of plastic. Lively, transparent and delicate, the work evokes the transience and joy of fields of wild flowers.
Junior Christmas Cards Competition
The Junior Houses have again involved all Junior children in the design of a set of four Tanglin Trust Christmas cards. This year the themes were based on the words Joy, Peace, Love and Noel. For each card, 16 winning entries were selected and then artfully combined by our in-house graphic designer, Hussein Hussaini. Congratulations go to all children for their unique designs and particularly to the winning entries. All proceeds from the sale of the cards went to this year’s nominated Junior charities.
Showcase: Art • Drama • Music
“If we shadows have offended, think but this; and all is mended, that you have but slumbered here while these visions did appear and this weak and idle theme no more yielding but a dream...” (Puck) Twinkling golden filigree, haunting tones of strings and wind, drum-beats, swirling kaleidoscopic colour: you could be forgiven for thinking you’d begun to ‘slumber’ and dream. Tanglin’s production of Shakespeare’s ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ was a delightful mélange of the exotic, the ancient and the modern, capturing Shakespeare’s timeless universal significance. The audience enjoyed seeing just how ‘unsmooth’ the course of true love did run as students depicted the madness, mix-ups and mayhem of Midsummer, whilst Athens became the enchantingly exotic Arabia. Aparnaa Balamurali, who played the mischievous Puck, servant to Oberon (played by Tom Ridley), nostalgically reminisced: “It was a perfect way to finish my drama career at Tanglin.” When questioned about learning lines, which didn’t seem to be much of a problem for any of the performers as they delivered Shakespeare’s iambic pentameter and metaphorical vividness with seeming ease, she commented: “It’s such a fun script – the words just flow!” The set and the costumes, designed with meticulous care, made for a visual delight and were further enhanced by the music, composed and produced by Y12 IB Music students with songs composed by Stella Talpo (who also played a majestic Titania). Through their performance and costumes, the musicians aesthetically blended in as if they were fairies who happened to be in the forest or Theseus’ court commenting musically on the scene unfolding.
“It was the funniest play the school has ever done” - Megan Roberts, Head Girl. Brave in the moment of performance, the actors brought their own interpretation to their roles. Bali Lee’s performance of Helena demonstrated her thespian courage and appreciation of Shakespeare’s humour. Louis Davis made the part of Lysander his own through a careful balancing of the character’s earnestness, confusion, youth and playfulness, whilst Grace Roberts served as a rich foil as the indulged yet tortured Hermia. Jos van Doorn’s portrayal of Helena’s lover was equally original and convincing - capturing Demetrius’ uncertainty and fury as well as his youthful inexperience. However, no-one in the audience will ever forget the play within a play, in particular the final nuptial scene. Barnaby Chadwick’s trilling of Thisbe’s agonised: “What, dead my dove?” followed by his ‘reverse collapse’ into Pyramus’/Nick Bottom’s (played by an inspired Archie Fielding) ‘dead’ but twitching lap was nothing short of uproarious. You had to be there! Credit goes to Assistant Director Zoe McParlin who was described by members of the cast as calm and in control at all times. She did a wonderful job of managing a cast which straddled a wide range of ages and personalities. It was clear at the final curtain call that the ‘team’ was made up not only of talented actors, musicians and dancers (too many to mention here), but also a dedicated backstage crew who helped to ensure that the production ran faultlessly. This understated commitment serves as testament to the enriching experience that drama at Tanglin offers to all who get involved. Congratulations to Head of Drama Jeff Aitken and all his team on a stunning production. And if anyone was ‘offended’ by the raw Shakespearean humor, well remember, it was only a dream!
by Helen Penry, Head of Y13
Showcase: Art • Drama • Music
by Mark Bradshaw, Assistant Director of Music (Senior) and Fiona Knight-Lucas, Assistant Director of Music (Junior) Senior Music - A Midsummer Night’s Dream
If you were fortunate enough to get a ticket for last term’s production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, you will have noticed the fabulous music that ran through the show. This music was all composed by the four Y12 IB Music students (Haymisha Francis, Kristina Jack, Jade Cottan and Jasmine Cottan) who made up 4/5 of the performers. The process was long and involved many stages. We began by setting the target – to produce appropriate atmospheric music for an Arabic flavoured production of Shakespeare’s comedy. Research was fascinating and included a visit by a professor of Ethnomusicology who lead a lecture and discussion on Arab identity and music and a visit to the National Library’s ‘Arabs in Singapore’ exhibition. We also explored maqam (Arabic scales) and the rhythmic modes that supply beat and groove to traditional and contemporary Arabic music. As research developed our awareness, we began to create our pieces. Our intention was to use our new knowledge alongside what we already knew to create something fresh and original. As the pieces came close to completion, we liaised with the production’s director and the dance co-ordinator to better fit our work to their ideas of what would be happening on stage. At this point we recruited Cassia Francis to add violin and extra percussion to the band. We also had to create different versions of pieces that could be changed subtly so as to be usable at different times in the show. Most pieces were used to foreshadow events or to create atmosphere for certain characters. The work is a great example of how coursework and extra curricular work can dovetail well in IB Music. We used curriculum time to research, compose, rehearse and perform for a real, exciting event outside of class; and then will be able to use the compositions to create suites of music for the students’ assessed composition coursework folio.
This has been another busy term for Junior Music. The lunchtime recitals enjoyed record audiences! These relaxed concerts (one for Y3/4 and one for Y5/6) are performed by Junior musicians over the lunchtime break for friends and peer groups. The Junior CCA ensembles have been flourishing with the addition of two new groups – the Beginner Violins and the Junior Guitar Ensemble. The ensembles have enjoyed a variety of performances throughout the term. The Junior Chamber Choir performed beautifully at the Remembrance Day service at Kranji War Memorial in November. All ten of the ensembles enjoyed performing at the Book and Gift Fair at the beginning of December and the Chamber Choir, together with the seventy-strong Junior Choir and the Junior Rock Band, made a wonderful contribution to Tanglin’s annual Christmas Festival of Music at St George’s Church. Finally, the end of Term 1 saw all the students in Y3 dazzling mums and dads in their year group concert entitled ‘Home for the Holidays’. This featured a variety of Christmas and holiday songs along with the children’s own poetry describing their favourite holiday experiences.
Sport At Tanglin we pride ourselves on the diversity of our community and on the broad range of sports and activities that are on offer for all students to enjoy. In addition to the competitive sports such as rugby, football and netball, Tanglin offers other, sometimes more unconventional, recreational sports, to cater for those who want to try something new. Recreational Sport
Embedded in the programme of cocurricular activities (CCAs) these sports are primarily designed for fun and recreational purposes and to encourage as much participation as possible. There is an extensive and eclectic selection on offer, such as rock climbing, mini tennis, gymnastics, pilates, dance, sailing, kayaking, horse riding, water polo and even cheerleading! Many of these activities are very popular and there are often long waiting lists for activities like horse riding for juniors and pilates and badminton for senior students. Students develop many useful skills by getting involved in these activities and some become accomplished at a high level. The CCA programme, which includes many activities other than sport, has become so successful that changes to the registration process are now planned to allow for a fairer way of catering for the overwhelming demand for certain activities. For Programme 2, which starts early in Term 2, there will be a move away from a sign up process which is based on a ‘first come first served’ basis and a move towards a ballot system, which takes into account those who have already taken part in a particular activity and those previously waitlisted. It is hoped that this will be a seen as a positive move all round. Whilst parents of Junior children will continue to sign up for their children’s activities, the onus in
the Senior School will be placed on the students themselves, who will be given allocated times to sign up for their desired activities. Look out for more information on these changes.
The dance competition in the second half of Term 1 was a great night of entertainment for all! The theme was ‘Back to the Future’ and there were dances involving styles from the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s and also futuristic and robotic themed pieces. All dancers worked hard and put a lot of time and effort into choosing their music, costumes and creating their dances. Judging the competition was Theresa Chapman from the Drama Department, dance teacher Lottie Lyle and TV presenter/show host Oliver Pettigrew. Congratulations to all the winners and well done to all those who took part.
Best Ever Sporting Season Results Congratulations to all students involved in Season 1 ACSIS Leagues for producing exceptional results, making this the best season for competitive sport that Tanglin has ever had! U14 Touch Rugby - Gold U12 Touch Rugby - Gold U19 Rugby - Gold U14 Rugby - Bronze U12 Rugby - Gold U11 Rugby - Gold U19 Volleyball - Gold U16 Girls Tennis - Silver U16 Boys Tennis - Silver U19 Girls Football - Silver U19 Boys Football - Bronze U19 Girls Basketball - Silver U16 Girls Basketball - Silver U14A Netball - Gold U14B Netball - Silver
by Harrison James, Y12.1, Alicia Hurmuses, Y12.6 and Emma Calcutt, Director of Sports and Activities
Tanglin has had an amazing season in terms of competitive sporting achievements.
This has been a great term for TTS rugby. In October the U19 boys team won the prestigious Rugby Sevens event, which was held on Singapore’s famous ‘Padang’ in front of the Singapore Cricket Club. Weeks of intensive mental and physical training comprising speed drills, strength and endurance exercise and complex tactics, instigated by the team’s coach, Ian Farr, all paid off. After a game fought with passion and determination on both sides, Tanglin won 10-5. Not content with this success, the following weekend the same team again scored a victory over UWC, this time in the annual Cunningham Cup, again on the Padang. Go Tanglin!
Not to be outdone, touch rugby is also enjoying great success and has seen a tremendous surge in popularity this term, with over 100 players signed up this season, more than three times as many as last term! Although this sport tends to be dominated by the girls, it is open to boys too and our U10s team is a mixed one. Teams exist for players from Y3 right through to Y13 and it is great to see so many participating in this fast developing sport, with all players displaying a great attitude and an infectious enthusiasm for the game. Last season culminated in the Asian All Schools tournament, which was held at the Singapore American School on November 19. With twenty schools from all over the region competing, the U14 girl’s team won all of their games except for one, beating UWC in the final 5-1. The U19 team came third in their pool and TTS Y9 Sophie Arbuthnot was named player of the tournament.
In early November, led by teacher Mark Scoular and his team of coaches, five teams of eager TTS football players flew up to Thailand to compete in the annual tournament hosted by the British International School Phuket. Tanglin teams played really well and should be very proud of their performances, bringing home a Gold medal (U13 boys), 2 Silvers (U9 and U11 boys) and a Bronze (U13 girls). Congratulations everyone!
This has been our most successful netball season ever, with three U14 teams entering the International Schools in South East Asia tournament in mid November. Held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, this tournament featured teams from 12 schools and our girls took Gold (U14A team), Silver (U14B) and bronze (U14C). An outstanding result, well done to all concerned!
Primary Update Key Stage One
Y1 & 2 also have more opportunities in sport and physical education by having a one hour lesson with PE specialists every week. They are enjoying taking part in a rotation of four activities over terms one and two which are swimming, gymnastics, multi skills and games. In Term 3 all of Y1 and 2 will be taking part in athletic activities in the build up to their sports days.
Y2 Activity Afternoon
Y2 children have been taking part in their activity afternoon which involves eight activities, including football, gymnastics and T ball. The sessions are designed to be fun and inclusive so that the children can develop skills and have a taste of activities they will experience in Y3.
Last term we introduced an extra hour of sport in curriculum time for all Junior students. Divided into houses, last termâ€™s events culminated in end of season tournaments, with results as follows:
Y3 girls Y3 boys Y4 girls Y4 boys Y5 girls Y5 boys
Touch rugby Touch rugby
Y6 girls Netball Y6 boys Rugby
Season 2 Multi-sports Multi-sports
Touch rugby Basketball
Season 1 wrap up
In addition to the events highlighted above, the following also deserve a mention: Over the half term break, Tanglin runners took part in the Athletics Conference of Singapore International Schools (ACSIS) U8 - U11 cross country event. Congratulations to Nicolas Harhalakis (U8 boys), Edward Greig (U9 boys) and Katie Mullan (U9 girls) who all came first in their respective races. The U19 Girls SEASAC Volleyballers played well in the final tournament at UWC campus. The girls have been training really hard and beat some good teams, ending up in a respectable 8th place. In tennis, TTS organised the boys and girls U16 ACSIS Tennis Tournament on November 2 and 3 - the boys event took place at UWCSEA and the girls at SAS. We entered an A and B team for boys, and an A team for girls. The B team played well and just missed getting through to the semi-finals. The A team boys beat SAS in the semi-finals and took home the Silver and the A team girls beat UWCSEA in the semi-finals also winning Silver. Well done to our players, these are our best ever results for Tanglin tennis!
This term we will be unveiling our new TTS Sport logo. Based on the Singapore icon of the Merlion, this logo will be rolled out on new competitive kit, starting with the SEASAC games which we are hosting at Tanglin in January.
PTA Looking Back at Term 1 26
by Frances Beretta, PTA President
It seems only yesterday that members of the PTA committee assisted the School with the Orientation Day for new students beginning a new year in a new school - not always easy, but certainly made less daunting by the warm welcome to Tanglin and the special arrangements (new this year) to ease the uniform shopping queues. Helping parents with the uniform selection for Nursery children was a delight – and brought back happy memories for many of us whose children are growing up too fast! A couple of weeks later, the committee enjoyed meeting parents at our Welcome Coffee Mornings, which included a separate event for the parents of the seven Nursery classes. It’s always great to meet the new members of the Tanglin community and PTA committee members look forward to these welcome sessions each term. The school year was off to a flying start; early in September, the first PTA Quiz Night of the year was held and what a successful and enjoyable evening it was! There were a record number of entries and our resident quiz master Neil Turrell, Head of Senior School, kept up the pace of the evening in style. Congratulations to the winning team ‘Universally Challenged’ and many thanks to everyone who supported the event. The Tanglin Christmas Fair 2010 took place on Friday 3 and Saturday 4 December in the Berrick Performance Hall and foyer – a really festive affair. On the Friday, essentially the book fair day, students visited the fair class
by class to browse and purchase books, with the younger children assisted by their teachers. Thank you to the library staff for their guidance as to the type of books recommended for sale to students in various age groups and their advice with regard to book vendors. Once again the Berrick Performance Hall and foyer was transformed, this year the decor featured the three wise men and jewel colours designed to create a more oriental Christmas feel - well done to Antje Kelly and everyone involved in the setup and decorating of the hall. The jewel colour theme looked stunning on arrival in the foyer and enticed visitors to sit down and enjoy the delicious festive fare on offer at The Oasis Tea Shop. Santa’s Grotto was sponsored by AAM Advisory this year, which meant that families could have photos with Santa and take away a photo magnet which no doubt will brighten many a fridge door for months to come. Thank you to AAM Advisory, the Tanglin Community appreciated your generous donation! Children enjoyed the free Christmas craft on offer again this year and the PTA committee would like to thank the Junior School for the use of the Y5 unit which meant that the craft area was air
conditioned and closer to the Berrick Hall this time. Other thanks go to the book, gift, gourmet and charity vendors for their participation and a great festive shopping experience; the students who entertained visitors to the fair on Friday and Saturday with their musical, drama and dance performances and the teachers, parents, staff and support teams who assisted the committee in so many ways. And of course a special thanks to the Tanglin community for supporting this annual event. I have to add personal thanks to the PTA team - a wonderful group of ladies who put so much hard work and effort into arranging an event of this magnitude. As always it was an absolute pleasure to work with all of you. As I write this, Christmas is still a few weeks away - but I hope that by the time you read it you will all have had a wonderful holiday and, like me, are looking forward to the New Year ahead. May I take this opportunity to wish you all health and happiness in 2011. We are already planning some special events which will take place in Term 2... Keep reading PTA Highlights to find out more!
Ask Student Services
by Claire Holmes, Kendra Frazier, Caroline Masterson, Sarah Whyte, Karen Ormerod, Sarah Le Grice and Isobel Barclay
Welcome to our regular Student Services page. In each issue, the four areas that make up Student Services Counselling, Nursing, Careers and PSHCE - come together to offer advice on a question commonly posed by parents.
We are leaving Singapore, how can we best support our child? The key to a successful move is helping your children to prepare in advance. You may receive a varied reaction from your children when you break the news that you will be moving to another country as a family. Depending upon the age of the children involved and their affinity to their current country, this can vary from immense excitement to a complete reluctance to leave their home and social network behind. From Counselling:
When you know for sure that you will be leaving, it is advisable to inform your child as soon as possible about the move. It is important to involve them in discussions in an age-appropriate way, giving then a clear indication of what aspects of the move they have a say in (e.g. if there are a variety of schooling options) and which aspects are non-negotiable (e.g. location or time frame). Young or old, your children will probably bombard you with questions. A lot of patience may be needed on your part. Whatever your child’s worries for the changes ahead, validate these, let them know that you are ‘there for them’ and reassure them that things will be okay. They say that in order to arrive well, you need to exit well. Children adjust better when they do not carry over bad feelings from the past. Encourage your child to reconcile any differences they may have had with others. Likewise, advise your child to acknowledge the people who have made a difference in their life here. Thanking people who have played an important role helps your child consolidate and appreciate the experiences they have had. When the time comes, make sure you take the time you need for meaningful goodbyes. If
you are able to organise a farewell party, framing sadness in this positive event (a celebration of friendship) can help children begin to slowly let go. To assist with the difficult task of leave-taking, you can also encourage your child to say goodbye to places (for example, the zoo or favourite restaurant) and pets (helping to find a new owner can ease this process). Even possessions may require bidding farewell to if they carry emotional significance (a desk, a bed, a house). And remember, as you say goodbye to all the people and places that have meant something to you and your child, take plenty of photographs! Most children will be very excited when they get to their new location. Typically, after a while, as the reality of the change sets in, they may begin to feel a little disoriented and perhaps a bit low. This ‘dip’ is a normal part of the adjustment process and the feeling usually passes with the realisation that things are different but still okay. As your child passes through these transition phases, you can help enormously simply by validating what they are feeling and helping them to see the opportunities out there.
Talk with your child about any changes they have experienced first hand, however small. Change is a part of life and it’s great for children to learn that change is okay. Talk about and name any emotions that come up so your child understands their own emotions. Relay your experiences of change and encourage your child to understand that these feelings are temporary and that feelings change over time. Try to make your child understand that it is very normal to have uncomfortable feelings about a big change. Discuss ways of staying in touch with your child’s present friends - even if this doesn’t happen it will remove some anxiety. Try not to talk negatively about the move in front of them, even if you are not so sure about it yourself, remain really positive about the new and exciting opportunities that your move may present.
From a health perspective you should be aware there may be physical manifestations in your child as they come to terms with the move to another country. These may be evident once they find out they are moving or once they are settling into their new environment. Children may not be able to verbalise
their worries or concerns about situations and their feelings are often given an outlet physically. These may be displayed with changes in behaviour, thumb sucking, nail biting, sleep disturbances, headaches or tummy aches. Pain children suffer is real and can be severe and it is therefore important to ensure there is no physical cause by speaking to your doctor. Once this has been ruled out and your child has been given time to express their concerns and fears about a move their physical symptoms should resolve.
Moving brings new opportunities and a chance to try new things. A new place means a unique set of circumstances and the chance to ‘reinvent’ oneself, exploring new activities or pursuing an existing interest with renewed energy. Meeting new people can lead to different opportunities including, for older students, possible work experience. Keep an open dialogue throughout the process. Speak with your child about the role they will play in the move and what to expect when they get to their new home, new school and new life. Encourage them to talk about their own expectations and feelings. Involve them in appropriate decisions, such as how they will decorate
their room, what subjects they want to take at school and what hobbies/interests they would like to pursue. Providing information (facts and figures about the new place) long before you actually move will also help prepare them for change. We wish you the very best of luck on your next adventure! In addition to our information you may find the following recommended reads helpful: Available from the Infant Library: Amy and Louis by Libby Gleeson Oh, the places you’ll go by Dr Seuss Available from the Junior Library: Home from home by Paul Allams and Marie Marchand Strawberry Hill by Mary Ann Hoberman For teenagers: If appropriate, a phrase book or travel guide for your new destination! Footsteps Around the World: Relocation Tips for Teens by Beverly D Roman, Dalene R Bickel, and Michael J Cadieux For adults: Home Keeps Moving by Heidi Sand-Hart Raising Global Nomads: Parenting Abroad in an On-Demand World by Robin Pascoe Homeward Bound: A Spouse’s Guide to Repatriation by Robin Pascoe
Creative Writing Kranji Memorial Poems
A shower of bombs, Fall high from the sky, You lie on the floor...dead. Blood red poppies, around the graves, Ashes of soldiers, under the ground, The sun is blazing, the sky is bright, The breeze is cool, as the trees whisper to you. Kranji is a peaceful place, a place for sadness, A place for weeping, a place for solemn faces. Marianne Bittaar, Y6.8
Gallant soldiers gone. However, their memory will never fade. Their graves stand tall in rows, Where the dead soldiers lie. Sadness is heavy inside families, Although pride sparks dimly and leads the way. The breeze blows gently, Ruffling the tops of flowers. But as I look at the graves, I hear horrific humming bullets. I think about how the soldiers may have diedâ€Ś War tore lives apart; War made enemies. Now I stand at Kranji looking at the many, many graves. They died for us to live in peace. Mollie Stevens, Y6.7
How The Jellyfish Got Its Sting Once upon a time, in the very deep Atlantic Ocean, there was a little fish called Bubblegum whose favourite thing to eat was seaweed. He loved it because it tasted like nothing else on Earth. It tasted sweet and salty at the same time.
One day, he ate so much seaweed that long tentacles began to grow out of his fishy body, which he called “tenties”. He felt lucky to have them because he was the only fish who had such things and now he could hug all his friends. However, he was a mucky little pup and he used his new tenties to pick his ears, dig his nose out, and stick them in the dirty, disgusting mud. He never washed them and his friends didn’t like to be hugged with these dirty tentacles. One night, there was a big Fish Acrobatics Show near where Bubblegum lived. When he went there, he tried to hug everyone in the audience. Some of them swam away but others stayed because they wanted to watch the show. When Bubblegum hugged them, they almost died because the tips of his tenties had turned rancid, diseased and poisonous. The next day a very sad thing happened. Everyone shouted “Go away!” at him. Bubblegum loved touching and hugging everyone with his tenties but it seemed nobody liked him doing it. When he understood what had happened, Bubblegum went deeper and further into the sea. Once he nearly got washed up on a lonely beach. But finally he simply bobbed away from everyone and everything. All the other fish and sea creatures felt very unhappy because they realised they actually liked Bubblegum a lot. But they had to send him away because his tenties were just too dangerous to have around. Nowadays, we humans wear all kinds of things - like swimming costumes, wetsuits, aqualungs, and flippers - when we go swimming in the sea. We have to be careful when we see a jellyfish because we might get stung. However, if we are careful and respect the jellyfish, and all the other creatures in the sea, we can usually all be friends and share the water - especially with the descendents of Bubblegum, the world’s first Guiding Moon Jellyfish. Isabella Lee, Y3.5
But his friends thought seaweed was super-deadly yucky. So they thought Bubblegum was very odd.
Book Reviews Senior School Library Book Reviews
Top 5 most popular books
Tomorrow, When The War Began by John Marsden Alone on a Wide Wide Sea by Michael Morpurgo Stolen by Lucy Christopher You Know You Love Me: a Gossip Girl Novel by Cecily Von Ziegesar Numbers by Rachel Ward I am the Great Horse by Katherine Roberts
This is the story of Alexander the Great told through the eyes of his war horse Bucephalus. The horse is bought by Alexander’s father who does not want his son to ride him because he thinks the horse is too wild. However, Alexander knew the horse was for him the first time he saw him and does manage to ride Bucephalus which results in the two forming a strong bond. As Alexander grows up and goes into battle it is Bucephalus who carries him and keeps him safe. My favourite character in the book is the horse because he shows a lot of determination and strength. I love horses and if you do too you might enjoy this sad but inspiring book. Read and reviewed by Jessica Newman Y8.4
Snakehead by Anthony Horowitz
Part of the best-selling Alex Rider series, I first read this book some three years ago but its deeper meaning has only just become evident to me. While many people of my age group will simply castigate it as another lame teen-takes-on-world thriller, I find this to be a very sobering read and definitely not beneath the dignity of a Y11 student. Alex is tricked once more into going on an espionage mission to spy on a snakehead, an illegal organization specialising in smuggling destitute South Asians into Australia. Alex travels with his godfather Ash and despite the fact that they had never met before, Alex quickly accepts Ash and trusts him entirely. This makes his eventual betrayal all the harder to handle. The question this book prompted in me is simple: “Are we too trusting?” Or: “Do the people we know and love most really deserve our trust?” By extension “Are these people inherently more trustworthy than any random stranger off the street?” While I don’t recommend brandishing this book and going off to inform your folks you no longer trust them, I will say that the well camouflaged message is very weighty and deserves to be debated seriously. Read and reviewed by Daniel Fernandez Y11.2
Junior School Library Book Reviews
Top 5 most popular books
Year 3 - Pirate School: Where’s That Dog? by Jeremy Strong Year 4 - Shipwreck on the Pirate Islands by Geronimo Stilton Year 5 - The Tuckshop Kid by Pat Flynn Year 6 - Once by Morris Gleitzman Non Fiction - Guinness World Records 2009 Skulduggery Pleasant: Mortal Coil by Derek Landy
Mortal Coil is book 5 in the bestselling children’s series about a sharply-dressed skeleton detective, Skulduggery Pleasant. A heart stopping action packed thriller with surprises at every turn. This amazing book will be enjoyed by any reader as they enter the world of mystery. Suitable for children aged 9 and older. Tom Parsons and Josh Hucksteppe, Y6.1
A notice board outside the Y3 unit features handwritten testimonies from our youngest Junior students regarding their favourite books. Here are just a couple, do go and take a look as there are lots more! “My favourite book is ‘Charlie and the Chocolate Factory’ by Roald Dahl. The main characters are Mr Wonka and Charlie. I like Mr Wonka because he’s very funny and he has his own wonderful chocolate factory!” “I like Beast Quest; there’s a boy who saves the world. It makes me feel like I’m on an adventure. The boy’s name is Tom, he killed 42 beasts. He had a cousin called Amelia, she was a good archer and helped Tom. They were heroes, they rescued people too.”
Infant School Library Book Reviews
Top 5 most popular books
The Cooking Book by Jane Bull Standing Small: a celebration of 30 years of the LEGO mini-figure by Nevin Martell Do not open this book! by Michaela Muntean and Pascal Lemaitre The Princess’s Secret Sleepover by Hilary Robinson Luke Skywalker’s amazing story (Star Wars) by Simon Beecroft I love stories about Cinderella and other fairy tales because they are funny and also interesting. I really like reading these types of books because they also help me to increase my reading level. Sofia Fonseca Y2.7 I love Lego books because I have a Nintendo Lego game and reading the book helps me find out more information about the characters. Reading Lego books is fun! Oscar Armenta-Jeffreys Y2.7
I love reading Lego books! I have read all the lego books available in the Infant Library. Felix Goddard Y2.4 The Tiara Club series of books are my favourite books to read. I have some at home but also enjoy borrowing them from the library. My favourite series is the ‘Tiara Club at Ruby Mansions’, which are lots of fun to read. Janika Van Soestbergen Y2.4
Parent Book Reviews from the Professional Development Centre Library
We have recently introduced a Parenting Collection to add to our extensive range of library resources. Split between all school libraries, each part of the collection will rotate every term to offer variety to library visitors. Starting this month, reviews written by parents on a selection of parenting titles will regularly feature in The Voice. If you are interested in borrowing these or any of our other parenting resources, or becoming a Tanglin Library member please contact any of our library staff.
How to Talk so Kids can Learn at Home and in School by Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish Casually I picked up this book, flicked through a few pages, read a few lines, looked at a few pictures and that was enough; I just had to read the rest of this book. Written from the perspective of Liz Lander, a young teacher trying to learn new and better ways to reach her students, the reader is guided through her experiences both good and bad. She has additional support from her more experienced colleagues, who also contribute with their experiences of being parents. The short chapters, bold cartoons, Q&A section and down to earth writing style mean that this easy-to-read book can be read from cover to cover but is also a great “pick up/put down” book that is just perfect for the bedside table. I was constantly thinking “I say that” or “I do that”. I could never understand why my enthusiastic and encouraging praise for maths homework was not producing a confident maths student. I now understand that what I was saying was different from what my daughter was hearing and, having changed just a few words, I have already seen a huge improvement. Now if they would just write a book about men I would be a very happy lady!! Review by Alison Lovejoy (mother of Amy)
Siblings without rivalry: how to help your children live together so you can live too by Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish This book is essential reading for parents of more than one child. It is extremely engaging and is presented in a reader-friendly way with helpful summary boxes and cartoons. The text highlights that sibling rivalry is inevitable and gives tangible examples that talk the reader through scenarios, helping parents and children to use a different set of responses. The overriding message is simple: avoid comparisons. The book states that sibling rivalry stems from jealousy similar to what a spouse might feel if asked to welcome another husband or wife into the household. Although the original text is now a couple of decades old it has still got to be one of the most useful parenting books on the shelves today! Review by Claire Holmes (School Counselor and mother of Benjamin and Hana)
Allergy Proof Recipes for Kids – more than 150 Recipes that are all Wheat-Free, Gluten-Free, Nut-free, Egg-free, Dairyfree, and Low in Sugars by Leslie Hammond Many mums already know that having a member of the family with an allergy or special dietary requirement adds to the challenge of preparing a variety of nutritious and appealing meals and snacks for everyone. This book provides informative support to anyone coming new to the task of feeding kids with allergies, and will also suggest some good additions to the repertoire of more experienced cooks. The recipes I tried were easy to follow and delicious. There is advice on how to adapt recipes for low sugar options and information on ingredients that should be kept handy when catering for kids with allergies. Definitely a book worth borrowing and browsing to find something to treat your hungry kids (and adults)! Review by Heather Dina (Teacher and grandmother of a child with multiple allergies)
The Last Word Life After Tanglin by Ronald Stones OBE, CEO and Head of School 1994 - 2006
My years at Tanglin Trust School were great years, and at the time I thought were the zenith of my career. Little was I to know about the further path that lay ahead. After twelve years at the helm of Tanglin, it was time to hand over the baton, and move on to something completely different. By that time, I had completed twenty-six back-to-back years of headship of international schools. I had learnt what I could do successfully, but I did not know what else I could do. I was not sure that any other organisation would want me at my age and stage of my career! After some discussion with Sampoerna Foundation – the largest philanthropic organisation of the highest repute in the region – I was brought in to lead a school quality improvement programme in national education in Indonesia. I was the only foreigner to work in a twohundred strong Indonesian organisation. This was a completely new and exciting – but also quite daunting – area for me. It was very humbling to be treated with so much respect and to develop lasting relationships with government officials at local, regional and national level. It was also a reality check for me to see how some schools have to manage teaching and learning in very basic facilities and on tiny budgets. In 2008, I accepted the challenge to lead Green School, a pioneering project in education in Bali. From its founding, the school has attracted major global media attention and celebrity visitors, whose support has put the school on track to becoming financially sustainable. I was able to put in place a strong principal and teaching staff and worked towards obtaining an international school licence. As a result student enrolment has now risen to 200. I have learnt so much – including
understanding more about the process of learning when working so closely with nature. The major back-breaking work at Green School is done and I am now reducing the time that I give to the project – effectively working part-time as Consultant Director. I continue to present the developing model of sustainability in education at international conferences. Earlier this year, another completely new hat was offered to me by a new international art management organisation, One East Asia. Their mission – ‘Enriching Appreciation through Knowledge’ enables me to bring education and art together, while championing art in SouthEast Asia, and making it more accessible to those that think it is out of their reach. I am effectively working part-time and re-inventing myself yet again for this organisation in an industry in which I know little, but have great interest. In the time that is left after Green School and One East Asia, I am developing programmes under the umbrella of my own registered consultancy, ‘Foundations’. So far these include international symposiums on the subject of creative leadership and a student leadership programme for national high schools in
Indonesia. Finally, I have managed to squeeze in writing two novellas which have been published as books in the past two years; a third is with the illustrator. I think it is fair to say that life is very full! I recently returned to visit Tanglin and found it most satisfying to see how the School has developed in recent years. The Tanglin of sixteen years ago was a primary school of 1000 students operating in facilities which were somewhat outdated. To see now the world class site, the high quality of the teaching and learning environment, and to note students’ achievements – it is all wonderful. There are many moments to recall from my years at Tanglin, but I will focus on two that will stay with me forever: 10 year old Camilla: “Mr Stones, how would you like to be remembered as Head of Tanglin Trust School?” made me really think; and 18-year old Mike: “Mr Stones, we will be leaving Tanglin at the same time, won’t we? I would really like us to keep in contact. In fact, I would like to be on your bus.” No greater compliment was possible...
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