BENEFITS OF BALANCED SCREEN TIME
TEDX UWCSEADOVER 'BEYOND'
STUDENTS ADVOCATING FOR SOLAR ENERGY
Our scholars are young people with foibles, hopes and fears common to all young people, but many bring experiences that modify the thinking of others, redirect their gazes and thus present new, challenging pathways. So, for all the quantifiable scores and success of our scholars, we are, most importantly, immeasurably the richer for their presence.â€? Chris Edwards, Head of College Read more on page 2
02 SCHOLARSHIPS: MYTHS AND REALITIES
8 K2 DISCOVERY TIME ON THE GREEN SCREEN
Chris Edwards on UWC's unique system
Technology transforms student storytelling
04 THE POWER TO CHANGE
9 WALK FOR TEMPLE GARDEN FOUNDATION
Graham Silverthorne reflects on the value of coaching
06 ARTS HIGHLIGHTS Term 2 Arts across the College
07 AN ODYSSEY LIKE NO OTHER Reflections from the Assistant Director
Grade 5 unit culminates with action for others
10 EXPLORING HEALTHY DIGITAL OPTIONS Andrew McCarthy explains the benefits of balanced screen time
12 TEDX UWCSEADOVER Speakers address the concept of ‘Beyond’
13 MORE THAN JUST WRITING Life takeaways from Writers’ Fortnight
14 ANNUAL REPORT Highlights from the 2016/2017 academic year
16 THE NARRATIVE OF WHAT HAPPENS Nick Alchin writes on why the stories we tell ourselves are so important
18 INNOVATIVE SPACES Explore the Music Recording Studio on East Campus
20 SEAMC 18 Student mathematicians put to the test
21 STUDENTS ADVOCATING FOR SOLAR ENERGY Solar for East launches
22 COMMUNITY FAIR AND FAMILY FESTIVAL Recaps of the two Parents’ Association flagship events
23 SPOTLIGHT ON … Junior School: Changemakers Learning Share
24 SEASAC ROUND UP Sporting success beyond results
26 EXTENDING THE MISSION Dzameer Dzulkifli ’03 shares his hopes for Teach For Malaysia
28 MEET THE DOVER HIGH SCHOOL PRINCIPAL An interview with Rebecca Butterworth
Front: Dover Infant Chinese New Year Service lunch Back: East Middle School Art workshop
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Editors: Courtney Carlson, Sinéad Collins, Molly Fassbender and Kate Woodford Photography: Sabrina Lone and members of the UWCSEA community Design: Nandita Gupta UWCSEA Dover is registered by the Committee for Private Education (CPE), part of SkillsFuture Singapore (SSG) CPE Registration No. 197000825H | CPE Registration Period 18 July 2017–17 July 2023 | Charity Registration No. 00142 UWCSEA East is registered by the Committee for Private Education (CPE), part of SkillsFuture Singapore (SSG) CPE Registration No. 200801795N | CPE Registration Period 10 March 2017–9 March 2023 | Charity Registration No. 002104 Printed on 100% recycled paper with environmentally friendly inks | MCI (P) 050/03/2018 | 064COM-1718
SCHOLARSHIPS: MYTHS AND REALITIES By Chris Edwards, Head of College Back in the 1940s, the marketing concept known as the USP appeared. This, of course, is the Unique Selling Proposition (or Point). The thinking was not just to come up with a slogan to sell your product, but to include in that slogan a genuine differentiating benefit of the product or service. So, for example, instead of saying their chocolate melted in your mouth (like all chocolate), M&M’s took the plunge in 1954 and said their product “Melts in your mouth, not in your hand”. Chocolate and clean hands: this was everything we’d ever wanted, and people were soon battering down the doors of candy stores to get at the colourful little miracles. Lots of companies followed suit, culminating in Domino’s Pizza’s bold “You got 30 minutes” slogan which promised free pizza if that Margarita wasn’t delivered in half an hour. (I assume the geographical caveats were extensive.) It is the unique scholarship system that for many defines or at least differentiates UWC schools and colleges, but I would worry very much if it became a United World College USP. Yet sometimes it can feel that way. It is all too easy to talk about UWC scholars as show-ponies, and once that happens, the young people concerned can be burdened by false expectation or even become the easy targets for lazy and ill-informed criticism. In UWCSEA, where the scholars form a small percentage of the population (because our mandate was to educate 2 | Dunia April 2018
the expatriate population of Singapore) we need to be even more sensitive than most to the issue of false expectation. When talking about the input, throughput and output of a school, the UWC movement can often, it seems to me, get bogged down on the first issue. Hardly surprising as the process of selection is far from intuitive. So, it might be worth reminding ourselves of a few salient points. In 155 countries there are 3,000 volunteers working for UWC National Committees. These volunteers, themselves alumni of UWCs, promote the movement, identify possible scholars, interview them and help place them in UWCs around the world, including UWCSEA. Some National Committees have successful fundraising arms to help with this: many do not. The difference between, say, the resources of the German National Committee and the Afghan National Committee is marked. What is undeniable is that many very busy, very able and often distinguished people are giving time and expertise to a cause in which they passionately believe. I know of nothing quite like it: engaged alumni volunteers working to find not money but the students themselves. Most UWCs rely on the National Committees for their survival, and most UWC staff will not have met the new students who are going to turn up at the start of the year because the selection took place elsewhere. Again, we are an outlier as over 5,000 of our students came through an internal selection process.
And who are these scholars? Are they all operating at the extreme end of academic brilliance and poverty? Absolutely not. Some scholars arrive speaking fluent English and knocking exams out of the park from the word go; others come with little English and require time to adjust. Indeed some find the academic challenges incredibly demanding throughout their time here. For the record, the average IB Diploma score of a scholar is a little lower than that for non-scholars. But that is to be expected, and as I’ve said a thousand times elsewhere, a hard earned IB score of 24 points under such circumstances deserves as much celebration as a less painfully achieved 40. And with UWC, an IB score is of course an element—not the quintessence—of education. There are then the myths about the socio-economic status of scholars. First, not all ‘scholarships’ within UWC are fully-funded scholarships. There are partial scholarships (these are means tested of course) and sometimes a ‘scholar’ is actually paying full fees. The problem here is nomenclature: anyone who comes through a National Committee is termed a ‘Scholar’ by the movement, and so we immediately have potential for confusion. But many scholars are of course from backgrounds that offer little hope for personal and societal transformation, and the effects of a UWC education upon such young people are sometimes the stuff of dreams: it is this that prompted Shelby Davis, for example, to pour millions into the UWC scholarship pot—an act
of extraordinary generosity which is changing young lives around the globe. The inspirational stories that have come from this are soaring examples of what a genuinely transformative education can do, and they are usually enough to silence UWCâ€™s most ardent critics. At UWCSEA we set aside a small percentage of our fee income every year to fund such scholarships, and this is enhanced by philanthropic donations to and through the UWCSEA Foundation. Many teaching colleagues also contribute to a scholarship fund. UWC is about impact. Throughput (what we do with students when they are here) and output (what they do with their lives afterwards) are crucial. But the factors that make our input unique (on different scales according to the college) are wonderful and cause for celebration. If I were in another industry I would suggest that at UWCSEA we should talk about scholars through positioning statements rather than USPs. Happily for me, I work in education and so I feel no compulsion to adopt either method. What I would rather say is that our scholars are young people with foibles, hopes and fears common to all young people, but many bring experiences that modify the thinking of others, redirect their gazes and thus present new, challenging pathways. So, for all the quantifiable scores and success of our scholars, we are, most importantly, immeasurably the richer for their presence.
April 2018 Dunia | 3
THE POWER TO CHANGE On the value of coaching
By Graham Silverthorne, Head of UWCSEA East I think it was probably sometime in 2001 when I sat chatting about my annual performance review with the Chair of my school board. It was a cold and dark early spring evening in Cambridge and I was coming towards the end of the second year of my first school headship. For a young leader, things had gone tolerably well. I had made some mistakes, scored some successes, learned to climb a few of the necessary ropes and I was beginning to find my feet. Jim, the Chair, was asking me what I wanted to do for my professional development and I was a little stuck with my response. I was reading the right books, attending the conferences, becoming known in the Department of Education in London—it all looked pretty comfortable, but Jim clearly had something on his mind. “Why don’t you get yourself a coach?” he asked, twirling his RAF moustaches as he offered the suggestion. I wasn’t sure what to say—truth be told, I didn’t really know what a coach did or how that suggestion would help me. Did he, I wondered, think I was doing something badly but not want to hurt my feelings? Being wise enough to follow along an idea from the man who had signed my contract, I agreed to investigate coaching and to devote my professional development money to that purpose for the year. As the saying goes, you never hear the bullet that hits you. Had I but known it, that conversation changed my life and set me on a course that has left an indelible mark on virtually every aspect of what I do, both professionally and personally. True to my promise to Jim, I found three potential coaches and set about meeting them all to assess whether I felt I could work with them. The first one, I felt, would have been better suited to selling second-hand cars, the second I found quite dull. The third was Pippa Basan. Pippa came to my office for our first meeting and told me that she wanted me to talk about myself. I spoke for about 15 minutes and all the while she wrote. When she finally 4 | Dunia April 2018
interrupted me, I saw that what she had written were individual words on a significant number of post-it notes. She leaned forward and slapped each of the notes down on the coffee table—there must have been at least 40. Leaning back in her chair she said to me, “sort them out”. Nonplussed by the instruction, I gave her my best nonplussed expression but she held firm and offered me no more guidance. I looked again at the words on the table and tried to follow the unhelpful instruction. The words she had written were all words that she had heard me use—it was a clever variation on the coaching technique of mirroring. All of the words were values or value judgements about myself. Strong, ambitious, caring, sympathetic, compassionate, helpful, driven, successful, anxious … I couldn’t tell you exactly what the words were now but the magic happened in the sorting process. I must have taken 20 minutes, maybe more and pretty soon I was oblivious to anything or anyone but the sorting game that she had set me. I found that I could, indeed, ‘sort them out’ and that they fell, almost with a clean sheering away from each other, into two distinct piles. It was fascinating and it was the first deep insight that I had ever been given into the workings of my own inner voice—or, as it turned out to be, voices. One set of values and judgements about myself was warm, generous and generally the definition of laudable ‘goodness’. The other set, when I saw them all together, I hardly recognised as me at all and yet the words had all fallen from my mouth. These words were about toughness and drive and ambition and success and generally ‘amounting to something’. When she eventually spoke again, Pippa asked, “Which one is your voice?” It was immediately clear to me that it was the first voice—I liked that person and wanted to be him. “Then whose voice is the second voice?” came the next question … and this was the beginning of my journey. The second voice, I soon worked out, was primarily that of my father. There were other contributors I could identify but what I was essentially carrying around as a self-narrative, as the voice inside my head that told
FEATURE The College welcomed Graham Silverthorne as Head of East Campus in January 2018. A History graduate from Cambridge University, Graham spent several years working in banking, editing and the legal world before discovering his life’s passion in teaching. Originally from the West of England, Graham’s teaching career progressed through posts in Wales, Hampshire and West Berkshire before he took up his first Headteacher appointment at Netherhall School in Cambridge. His second Headship in the UK was at Gordano School, where he spent seven years, establishing the school as an independent Foundation School—and has a building named after him. In 2010, he set off on what he describes as life’s great adventure and became Principal at South Island School, in Hong Kong, where he spent seven happy years developing a school vision based upon much of the philosophy which underpins the UWC mission. Graham is a highly experienced leader with a particular focus on leading, developing and motivating high performing teams. We are delighted to welcome Graham and his wife, Wendy, to Singapore and UWCSEA.
me what I should be doing, was the voice of my father—or more accurately, what I had interpreted as his expectations of me. What I was learning about, in mind-churning slow motion, was the coaching concept of self-limiting beliefs. The existence of the narrative loop that we all carry within us which doesn’t exist to help us but exists, primarily, to restrict us from being the person that we really want to be. You will be familiar with the words that this voice uses to introduce its judgements— “I shouldn’t …”, “I need to …”, “I can’t …”, “I’ve never been any good at …”, “I must …” And you can fill in the rest of the phrases just as easily as I can: “eat so much chocolate”, “diet”, “help buying shoes”, “do maths”, “be more organised”. The stories that we tell ourselves are the driving forces of our lives. If we are using the words and expectations of other people to tell ourselves these powerful stories, then we are highly likely to spend lives lacking in fulfilment and contentment. If we don’t like the stories we tell, then a coach can help us change them. There were many other revelations with Pippa, this was just the first one but it was the moment that I gave myself the imperative (using my own voice): “I must learn how to do this”. Within 12 months, I had completed a coaching course with Performance Coaching (now Culture at Work) in the UK. The CEO of that company and my trainer, Carol Wilson, had been on the Board at Virgin Records and remains a personal friend of Richard Branson. The training that I received from her led me into a world of pro bono coaching (of which Carol does not approve, she thinks that financial commitment secures buy-in but we agree to disagree on that) and into two extensive teacher education programmes, first in Bristol and then in Hong Kong. There is no correct way to be a coach. At East Campus, I am fascinated by the engagement with the Cognitive Coaching Model. I will learn more about this over the months to come but I can see the effect of that process on relationships within the campus with absolute clarity. There is an emotional
intelligence, a respect and a commitment to allowing all voices to surface in a conversation that is unique in my working experiences. I have no doubt at all that this collegial and supportive approach has been engendered by a quite conscious process of defining collaborative norms and shaping positive expectations of one another. The large bulk of my work has been with the GROW Model of coaching (created by Sir John Whitmore) but I have also worked with a process known as the London Challenge Model in the UK, supporting failing school leaders, the Instructional Coaching Model of Jim Knight and Alan Sieler’s Ontological Coaching Model. Instructional Coaching is also already established on East Campus and works well in tandem with the other approaches. Sometimes I hear people question the value of an organisation investing in coaching but to me that is rather like asking what is the value of smiling at people. I couldn’t provide you with any metrics on that but I am as sure as everyone else is that doing it will improve my environment and my chances of success tenfold. Actually, the impact of coaching can be measured quite successfully in a number of ways, including employee satisfaction ratings, attrition rates, the success of performance management systems, succession capacity building, professional development evaluation ratings, to name but a few. We don’t always recognise the moments when important things happen in our lives until much later. The day we first set eyes on a future spouse or partner, the application we decide that we will or we won’t send, the person to whom we once showed a kindness that is repaid many years later with great interest. I had no idea, when I sat down for my fireside chat with Jim, in 2001, that evening would set me off in a new direction for the rest of my life. One great gift that we can give to another person is the belief that they have control over their own lives and the power to change things—or stories—that do not serve them well. This is the power of the good coach. April 2018 Dunia | 5
Interrelated High School Art Show, Dover Campus
After Dark Dance Showcase, East Campus
A diverse exhibition of original works by Art students in a variety of media, including painting, drawing, photography and sculpture.
A journey through the night, from sunset to sunrise, featuring hip hop, Latin, House and Contemporary dance performed by High School students.
Epic Arts Dance Show, East Campus
Primary School Arts Festival, Dover Campus
A highlight of the year, the inclusive dance show features the talents of Global Concerns NGO partner Epic Arts along with East students.
Students have been exploring a range of dramatic arts through participation in their annual grade-level Arts Festival performances.
OPUS, Dover Campus
Grade 12 Arts Showcase, East Campus
An evening of fantastic music making in the magnificent setting of Singaporeâ€™s Esplanade Concert Hall.
The annual showcase of work by Grade 12 IB Dance, Film, Music, Theatre and Visual Arts students.
From All Corners Music Concert, East Campus
Afterlife Dance Show, Dover Campus
An evening of collaborative music making featuring the Middle and High School ensembles and choirs.
A highlight of the Dover calendar featuring talented High School dancers in a student-produced showcase.
6 | Dunia April 2018
An ODYSSEY like no other
By Manu Moreau, Grade 12, East Campus
When I first started working on this project I was full of excitement, with not a clue of the journey that I would eventually go on. Never had I imagined just how much organisation as well as leadership skills would be necessary. When we first approached our script of The Odyssey, adapted by Hattie Naylor, it was hard to connect with many of the contemporary aspects that Naylor had incorporated into the epic Greek poem. We were unable to conceptualise ideas like having suitors playing football, but at the same time we could not place the piece in Greece and have the cast wear togas. Instead we looked closer to home for inspiration; living in Asia we are surrounded by an amazing variety of both contemporary and traditional Asian theatres. Director and Drama teacher Anna Parr was interested in looking at Japanese theatre as inspiration. When we looked at Japanese history, culture and theatre, we were able to draw parallels with The Odyssey. The grotesque elements, like the suitors, we wanted to physicalise with Japanese Butoh Theatre, while the beautiful and gentler aspects we explored through Kabuki.
From this we created our concept, our intention. It is important to note that our piece was not set in Japan. We took these two styles of theatre, as well as aspects of other Japanese theatre conventions, and used them in our design, acting and approach to devising. This was also important to keep to a constant theme and not to involve too many different styles. Attempting to stay true to Homerâ€™s world of sea creatures, mythological monsters, as well as Ithaca and Troy. One of my favourite scenes is Scene 7, which we created very early on in the rehearsal process. We knew we always wanted to create a large ensemble piece (one of the reasons we ended up with such a large cast). Having a large ensemble allowed us to give the students the ability to create a piece which was their own. I absolutely loved exploring the ways in which a large group of people can come together as one unit to communicate something on a stage. During the creation of Scene 7 the cast split into groups, each responsible for creating a movement piece that told a part of the larger story. The reason that I love the final product of this exploration, is that it allowed the entire ensemble to work together to physicalise what the audience imagines in their heads.
is created through the merging together of opposing thoughts and opinions; it is inherently an ensemble and group activity. I believe now that the role of the director should be to guide and challenge and question, but also inspire and motivate so as to encourage a thoughtful and meaningful process. Through this process I have learned what it means to be a director; I have always been passionate about theatre and about telling people what to do. Working on this production over the past year was an incredible journey, I learned so much about theatre, about productions, about sound and lighting and directing and most importantly about the people I have worked with so closely. One of the things I enjoyed most was working backstage on the design elements, including sitting down with professional set designers, working out costumes, and learning how sound and lighting work. Being able to work with these people, talk to them and observe how they create and design, I gained a small insight into how the world of professional theatre operates. I now believe theatre is something that will always be a part of me and that I will always be a part of.
The fact that the cast was able to take such a big role and responsibility in directing these movement pieces themselves and constructing this scene, is something that I really enjoyed as a director. I believe theatre, much like ideas, April 2018 Dunia | 7
K2 Discovery Time on the Green Screen By Alison Forrow Digital Literacy Coach Dover Campus Have you ever wanted to magically change your current location to be somewhere else? A snowy mountain? A white sandy beach perhaps? Or maybe somewhere with some history and culture? Well the K2 students on Dover Campus have been doing just that by using the magic of technology as part of their regular Discovery Time sessions. Discovery Time is scheduled time within the weekly Infant School timetable in order to put students in control of their learning. Activities offered during the 90 minutes of Discovery Time are structured to allow time for students to develop conceptual understandings through different experiences and using a range of materials. Some activities are led by teachers and others are more student driven. Technology integration is something that happens from K1 and the Digital Literacy team, together with classroom teachers, refer to the most recent research while thinking carefully about 8 | Dunia April 2018
how we do this using best practice. Infant School classrooms have sets of iPads available in order to support and enhance learning and students use them with increasing competency. During Reading and Writing Workshop in Term 2, K2 students moved on from personal narrative to fictional stories. As a result, they have had to think about more complex ideas including setting, character and plot. How will the characters talk to each other and how will they act? In the Discovery Time area, students have been given opportunities to put on shows and perform for their friends andÂ classmates. In order to extend their learning, and integrate the use of technology within an appropriate setting, small groups of intrepid storytellers ventured over to the IDEAS Hub towards the end of Term 2. There they used the multimedia studios to retell part of a traditional tale in front of a green screen. With help from our wonderful parent volunteers, the Infant students chose a setting from an album of images ranging from forests and castles to farms and
villages and imported it into the Green Screen app on the IDEAS Hub iPads. A little bit of dressing up, maybe a crown for the queen or an axe for the woodcutter, helped the students to get into character before they decided what they would say as they performed a few lines for the camera. The children focused on how to deliver their lines and how to use their bodies to match their character. The final product was a short video clip in which the student was transported into a fictional fairytale world. Time spent in the multimedia studios combined many skills and qualities of our learner profile and provided an exciting experience for our Infant students. They came back to class buzzing and recounting their experience to friends. Teachers have begun sharing the short videos with parents via the Seesaw learning journal platform, and feedback from parents and teachers alike indicates they are impressed by the childrenâ€™s ability to make decisions, be creative and perform on camera. Bravo! More, more!
Grade 5 walks for Temple Garden Foundation By Hugh Pollard, Head of Grade 5, Dover Campus UWCSEA believes in a holistic education and recognising and embracing opportunities across the five elements of the Learning Programme is the way that we as a College ‘make education a force to unite people, nations and cultures for peace and a sustainable future.’ One of the events that best encapsulates the ethos of the College is the Grade 5 walk-athon, an annual fundraising effort that is the culmination of the What if I were you? Unit of Study. Throughout the unit, students studied common human needs, and how access to resources influences how we are able to meet our basic needs. Students also began to differentiate between physical and emotional needs, and to explore the different ways in which needs are met within families around the world including comparing the needs of others to their own. We then examined the circumstances that affect people’s ability to meet their needs, becoming familiar with both local and global organisations that assist individuals and communities when they are unable to meet their needs. The walk-a-thon was the result of collective action undertaken by students as they started to explore how they can make a difference in the wider world, and help to support those within our community. Key questions that the unit addressed were: • What can affect people’s ability to meet their needs? • How can people and organisations take sustainable action to support communities? • What can people do to make a difference in their communities? The unit, which sits squarely within the human geography component of the Humanities curriculum, encouraged students to look at how life experiences are in part a product of where we live and introduced important concepts such as responsibility and empathy.
Linking directly to the Service programme, students used Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs to understand how poverty and its associated difficulties result in not being able to meet basic needs. Additionally, ideas about local and global action were introduced, bringing the possibility of helping within practical reach of our students in a sustainable way. Students considered the communities that they are part of and how these groups of people can help others, paying close attention to the many service organisations that exist within the College and one in particular: the Grade 5 Global Concern, Temple Garden Foundation (TGF). Rob Biro from TGF presented to the Grade 5 Assembly in the last week of Term 1, outlining how the organisation supports communities in Cambodia. Students then decided on the walk-a-thon, which involved a strenuous 2½ hours of walking, and in many cases running, around Medway Park. The idea behind the walk-a-thon was for the students to experience a level of discomfort that enables them to feel like they have worked hard for their sponsor money, while encouraging empathy within the students for the often difficult lives of the Cambodian communities that their fundraising will help. The walk-a-thon is by no means the only activity in support of TGF. Throughout the year Grade 5 help to raise awareness through assembly presentations and other classroom initiatives and activities. So far, the Grade 5 community has collected $24,600 from their activities and the next steps for the project will see the Grade 5 team working closely with TGF staff to see how the funds are used. Fundraising for one of our service partners grew out of the empathy generated by a clear curriculum focus and led to the walk-a-thon. Students’ own commitment to care was developed through this experience in an authentic way and the event as a whole represents a well-articulated approach to helping children fulfil the College’s mission. Photo by Paul Benefield
April 2018 Dunia | 9
EXPLORING HEALTHY DIGITAL OPTIONS The benefits of balanced screen time By Andrew McCarthy, Assistant Director of Learning Technologies in collaboration with the UWCSEA Digital Literacy teams Screen time is a hot topic for parents, educators and researchers alike with much conjecture and debate over appropriate levels of screen time for children of all ages. In a world where it is nearly impossible to avoid the ubiquitous screen for creating, consuming and communicating this is understandably an interesting area to explore. This article brings together some of the evidence-based research that exists in this field, with the aim of shifting the focus of current discussion from producing a metric that recommends ‘desired hours of screen time’ to a more nuanced understanding of the context in which children view or engage with different types of digital media. While the overwhelming focus in mainstream journalism seems to be on highlighting the risks and harms of screen time, we have collected research and advice that highlights the benefits of balanced use through building a positive connection with your child. When exploring an issue such as screen time we try to look for original contemporary research that is often highlighted by journalists. Where possible we identify research-based meta analysis studies or longitudinal projects where we can look for trends. In this instance, research from the collaborative ‘Parenting for a Digital Future’ at the London School of Economics provides a grounded synthesis of the research published to date. Alongside this we reference other meta studies including the 2017 UNICEF Report: The State of the World's Children and The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Report: Students, Computers and Learning. The book The Art of Screen Time by Anya Kamenetz, is one of many recent publications on the topic of screen time. This particular book explores a very practical set of strategies which resonated with our ambition of empowering students and our view of seeing parents and teachers as mentors. Our thinking is constantly challenged and informed by our interactions and reflections with students, parents and teachers in coffee mornings, workshops or classes. The broadest definition of screen time is spending time on an electronic device, such as using the internet, watching television or using a gaming console. As working professionals this might begin by checking a news app in the morning, logging into a work computer for the majority of the day, messaging a friend about dinner, through to watching Netflix in the evenings. For students, this could be using 10 | Dunia April 2018
an iPad or laptop in lessons throughout the school day, messaging family, video calls with friends, playing video games or watching YouTube in their free time. As parents and educators, the biggest challenge we face is encouraging the positive aspects of digital media such as creating or connecting socially against more passive uses of devices which we may like to moderate. There are many studies which attempt to quantify screen time for children. The most recent OECD data reported that in 2015, teenagers spent 146 minutes online each weeknight and on average, a sharp increase from the 103 minutes reported three years earlier. In two separate studies in Canada and Australia, data highlighted that an average 3–5 year old will spend two hours on a screen each day. Statistics reporting screen time for parents point to very high usage levels. Data collected by Common Sense Media suggests that when work and personal media are combined, 51% of parents spend eight hours or more with screen media each day. One of the largest cross sectional studies of 120,000 students in the United Kingdom reported in the UNICEF analysis, concluded that moderate use of 2–5 hours per day (depending on the activity), seemed to have a small positive effect on mental well-being. Whilst excessive use of digital media can have a slight negative effect on overall well-being, parents and educators need to be equally cognisant of other factors. For children these include: sleep, eating breakfast regularly, and considering social dynamics which can have stronger impacts on their well-being than technology alone. The most publicised yet debated recommendation on screen time came from the American Association of Pediatrics (AAP). In 2011, they recommended for no screen time for infants under 2 and a very moderate one hour of use per day for older children. However in 2016 AAP published new guidance highlighting that a balanced use of digital media, moderated by social interactions with friends and parents, can be beneficial. For instance, when parents are mediating screen time, watching together, asking questions and pointing out examples, children will be more engaged and parents more critical of the content. When consumption is passive and solo, the same benefits of screen time are limited and the risks more pronounced. This idea is extended to children with specific learning and social emotional needs, where excessive consumption of media has inherently higher risks. Research highlighting the positive effects of screen time gets less attention in the mainstream media. To borrow the food metaphor from Anya Kamenetz and her book The Art of
Screen Time, we should try encourage children to consume a balanced diet of media. As with fruit and vegetables there are lots of ‘healthy’ digital options that we can encourage our children to explore. Examples include activities such as: reading eBooks, educational games and television, creative projects or connecting socially to friends and family. Every week we see great examples of students pursuing their passions: editing film footage of their holidays, publishing soundtracks, educational games, creating stop motion videos with LEGO or blogging and curating an audience. All of these can be alternative ways to spend time on devices and encouraged in moderation. On occasions such as stifling hot afternoons we may let our children indulge in watching music videos or something frivolous but overall we need them to navigate a path to balanced use. Whilst there have been few scientifically rigorous trials analysing the impact of digital media, there are several small studies that highlight potential risks of excessive use. Excessive screen time of more than seven hours per day, in one activity can impact children’s well-being, but the impacts are seldomly attributable to digital technologies alone. For instance, some research highlights links between watching television for extended periods of time and obesity. Other studies connect media use late in the evening to production of the stress hormone cortisol and poor quality sleep. Literature highlighted in the UNICEF report, suggested that labelling excessive consumption as addiction, often conflates the issue. More realistically, only a very tiny minority of children or even adults are ever likely to experience such severe impairment of a major area of their life achieving clinical significance. Our best advice for any parent who is concerned is to look out for changes in; eating and sleep patterns, child’s physical health, willingness to connect socially with peers, engagement in school and desire to pursue hobbies or interests. These issues may manifest through the excessive use of digital media and be triggered by other social and/or emotional issues. We work closely with our students in various lessons to slowly introduce the idea of screen time and finding balance. In the Primary School this includes assemblies exploring what effective communication looks like online and highlighting the parallels to the face-to-face environment. In Middle School
we aim to equip students with self-regulation strategies, for example by highlighting particular apps like Moment or Focus to track usage and to support reflection. Through our Personal and Social Education curriculum in the High School we aim to help students make informed decisions to enhance well-being and productivity, over time helping them navigate the reality of growing up in a digital world. Whilst you could probably attempt to raise your child in a bubble and try to block many of the digital temptations surrounding them, we believe that the presence of devices in society will only grow. Thus we are obligated to act as role models and to support our students in using devices in moderation, and encourage parents to do the same, by setting boundaries and initiating discussion when they are overused. In some families this may mean restrictive monitoring of younger children and setting guidelines. For older children, you may mediate your child’s use through discussions about their viewing of the latest Netflix series or video game. In light of a constantly evolving landscape of online media, negotiation and discussion of media use will be an ongoing conversation for parents and educators alike. References • OECD (2015). Students, Computers and Learning: Making the Connection, PISA, OECD Publishing. http://dx.doi.org/10.1787/9789264239555-en • UNICEF (2017), The State of the World's Children. • Brown, A. (2011). "Media use by children younger than 2 years." Pediatrics, 128(5), 1040-1045. • Council, O. C. (2016). "Media and Young Minds." Pediatrics, 138(5). • Anya Kamenetz (2018). The Art of Screen Time. • Parenting for a Digital Future, London School of Economics: http://blogs.lse.ac.uk/parenting4digitalfuture/2016/10/21/new-screen-time-rulesfrom-the-american-academy-of-pediatrics/ http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/66927/1/Policy%20Brief%2017-%20Families%20%20 Screen%20Time.pdf • "Screen time and young children: Promoting health and development in a digital world." Paediatrics & Child Health, Volume 23, Issue 1, 15 February 2018, Page 83. https://doi.org/10.1093/pch/pxx197 • Maggie Yu and Jennifer Baxter, Australian Institute of Family Studies. "Australian children’s screen time and participation in extracurricular activities." http://data.growingupinaustralia.gov.au/pubs/asr/2015/asr2015e.pdf • Why Parent Mediation Matters, London School of Economics. http://www.lse.ac.uk/ media@lse/research/EUKidsOnline/EUKidsIV/PDF/Parentalmediation.pdf
April 2018 Dunia | 11
Photos provided by Masud Tyree Lewis
By Masud Tyree Lewis, Grade 12, Executive Producer and Director of Operations for TEDxUWCSEADover, Dover Campus
UWCSEADover Going beyond—pushing the boundaries of thinking and action— is what it means to be part of a UWC community. Sitting back and letting things happen is not typical of our students; when they identify something that needs to change (within our UWCSEA community or globally) they seek out opportunities for their voices to be heard and ways they can be part of the change. This years TEDxUWCSEADover was no exception. Guided by the concept of ‘Beyond’ the students leading this event drew together speakers—including current staff and students—who inspired the audience to consider, among other things, what it means to have a meaningful life, how to courageously share one’s own mistakes and how to champion innovative practices aimed at protecting the environment. The organisation of the event itself was an example of going beyond— Masud and the rest of the team worked tirelessly to make this happen because they believed in the importance of the human voice for inspiring change. Rebecca Butterworth, High School Principal, Dover Campus
12 | Dunia April 2018
On Friday, 2 February, High School students at UWCSEA Dover treated the community to an evening ‘Beyond’. An official TEDx event like no other, TEDxUWCSEADover was crafted to show that while UWCSEA’s ambitious community members tend to go far, we can still go further and even, beyond. The event’s sigil, the bird, was selected to illustrate a simple concept: birds, from a very young age, spread their wings and fly, usually, far away from their home. The organisers challenged their audience to think like migratory birds: go beyond and go far in order to grow. “There is nothing more beautiful than a determined bird exploring a new patch of land or a new belt of sky” were the sentiments of the event’s leading team. But the organisers did not challenge their excited audience by calling them birds, rather, they invited them on journeys into the stories of their five speakers; into what they would call ‘journeys beyond’. Julia Schetelig and Warren Su, students at UWCSEA East and Dover, respectively, were amongst the evening’s lineup. The organisers felt it was essential to challenge their predominantly student audience by having their classmates on stage, a choice that not only moved fellow students but also seasoned adults. While Schetelig explored the concept of giving a voice to the voiceless rather than becoming their voice, a concept many of us as changemakers tend to forget, Su dissected the faults of his leadership through a beautiful metaphor, a satellite. Together, the two wove stories that appealed to the hearts and minds of the audience and their classmates in particular. Not neglecting their adult audience, the organisers curated talks from Dover teacher and UWC Atlantic College alumna, Anisha Wilmink, architect and artist, Christian Waldvogel and urban marine biologist, Eliza Heery. Wilmink evaluated our role as members of the UWC community and simplified our mission into a simple command: “Find a way to be useful and be good at it.” Waldvogel and Heery sought to share their knowledge about the beauty of our magnificent planet and succeeded gracefully. While Heery took the audience with her on the journey beyond the water’s edge and into the urban seascape where fascinating creatures thrive—on waste, Waldvogel beckoned the audience to think philosophically and artistically about the shape, and the centre of the universe: us. The five talks were complemented by two pre-recorded TEDx talks and a musical performance by UWCSEA Dover student band, Take One. To commemorate the spectacular evening, audience members were also offered complimentary TEDxUWCSEADover merchandise. It was, for many, an evening well spent and a journey worth taking. Thank you to everyone who attended; thank you for going 'Beyond'. If you were not, we bid you, never be afraid to go beyond what is normal; to challenge your everyday routine; to explore the dark and mysterious; go beyond!
MORE THAN JUST WRITING Life takeaways from Writers’ Fortnight
By Aryan Sahai, Grade 9, East Campus English … one of the most dreaded subjects students must take. Every. Single. Book. Must. Be. Analysed. Every essay, written to perfection. But a special experiential learning programme engages students beyond reading and writing. The annual Writers’ Fortnight at East Campus, held each January, brings speakers from all over the world to campus to talk to Grade 9 and 10 FIB students about various aspects of their lives—both personally and as a writer. The main goals of Writers’ Fortnight are to: help students develop a better understanding of what makes a story, better prepare them for how to look for a story, and for them to be able to tell the story the way that they want to tell it, whilst also considering the target audience. Based on student feedback via a post-event survey, those goals were certainly achieved. I've also identified the following top five life takeaways from the speakers:
“Anything is possible”
Danny Raven Tan’s bluntness (as above), was rather refreshing. Students appreciated the straight forwardness of this Singaporean painter. Having coped with the death of his father, his own pancreatic cancer, and caring for a mother with dementia, he provided students with a real life example of someone who has decided to get on with life and overcome each hurdle.
Spoken-word poet, Deborah Emmanuel, talked about her struggle to understand her identity, as an Indian who has lived all her life in Singapore with little connection to Indian languages and culture. She also spoke of being in prison for a year and how it shaped her poetry and art.
Kate Levy, Head of English, described such encounters as “interactions with adults that treat students with a frankness and a lack of condescension that might be quite refreshing.” Danny’s message to students was to “get on with it”. Life isn’t going to wait for you; you have to move on and keep going.
One student commented that Deborah “went through such hardships, took it as a positive experience and used it to improve herself”. Through speakers like Deborah, Writers’ Fortnight showed students the advantages of mastering the UWCSEA skills and qualities, particularly to see setbacks as opportunities to improve and build resilience, motivating students to overcome problems they might face themselves.
“Disabled people don’t need help all the time; they are not disabled, they are differently-abled” Following a car accident that left her paralysed from the chest down, Christina Lau, has become a successful mouth painter and table tennis player for Singapore. After hearing her story, some students’ mindsets completely changed, as they gained greater insight into why people who are differently-abled should be valued for their unique skills and contributions to society. At UWCSEA, there is—of course—a great emphasis on service, and Writers’ Fortnight helped put this commitment into perspective as a reminder that service aims to embrace the differences among individuals and unite for prosperity.
“Be a cockroach” A cockroach? Really? Yes, Chetan Bhagat—author of nine blockbuster novels, four of which have been adapted into successful Bollywood films—told us to be like a cockroach. Chetan shared lessons learned through a dramatic career change, from investment banker to author. He explained that “the strongest cockroaches don’t survive; the ones who adapt the best will”, citing the fact that cockroaches survived the dinosaurs—despite their relative size and strength. The idea that adaptation— rather than dominance—is critical to success, supports the development of a growth mindset. One student wrote that “learning about … being adaptive … has provided inspiration and hope.”
“My grandma was married at 16, so I can relate” “How many of you are married?” This question immediately got students’ attention around the issue of child marriage. Social justice photographer, Robyne Hayes, uses photography to empower people and communities. She talked about her experience helping girls who are victims of child marriage. Many students who work with Global Concerns aiming to combat pressing global issues, connected with Robyne’s passion for her work. One Grade 9 student wrote, “I formed a greater bond [with] … my GC, Moving Mountains, as we learned about child marriage in Nepal.” Robyne inspired him to continue working and supporting his GC in order to bring change in society.
These takeaways highlight the important role that experiential education plays in students’ learning. UWCSEA gives students numerous real-life experiences such as Writers’ Fortnight through which to learn and build their skills. Writers’ Fortnight helps students to expand their thinking and mindsets, which is intended to serve them far beyond the classroom. Read more student writing inspired by Writers' Fortnight on UWCSEA Perspectives. April 2018 Dunia | 13
FEATURE In her first Annual Report message as Chair of the Board of Governors, Anna Lord wrote about the Collegeâ€™s successes, the strategic direction of the UWC movement, and priorities achieved by the UWCSEA Board. In conclusion, she wrote that, â€œDiscussions and decisions by the Board always have the needs of current and future students at their heart, and we are continually reminded of what a privilege it is to be accountable not solely to the bottom line but to this remarkable community of students, staff and parents and to the mission that unites us.â€? Included in the report are sections on student achievement in each element of the learning programme; information about the College community, including results of the annual parent survey; the business report incorporating Human Resources, Admissions and the financial statements for the College; and a summary of the activity in College Advancement. The report includes a large number of statistics that describe the breadth and depth of our activity. A selection of these statistics follows. To read the full report on the College learning programme and operations visit www.uwcsea.edu.sg/AnnualReport. To receive a printed copy, please contact Denise Wan, Communications and Marketing Assistant (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Students on both campuses
Families on both campuses
Financials Maintenance and operations 4% Other contributions 3% Boarding fees 4%
Development levy 10%
Educational support salaries and benefits 9%
Dover Campus Expenditure
Dover Campus Income Educational resources and other expenses 14%
Sundries and other fees 11% Tuition fees 72%
Depreciation 4% Administration and Boarding salaries and benefits 5%
Other contributions 3%
East Campus Income
Educational support salaries and benefits 10%
Sundries and other fees 8% Tuition fees 75% 14 | Dunia April 2018
53% Teacher salaries and benefits
Maintenance and operations 8%
Boarding fees 4% Development levy 10%
52% Teacher salaries and benefits
Administration and Boarding salaries and benefits 6%
Educational resources and other expenses 20%
East Campus Expenditure
Class of 2017 IB Diploma results
(I)GCSE results June 2017
Student hours spent overseas
Average IB Diploma score
ISC = Independent Schools Council
Please note that this number represents the total number of posts advertised for both teaching and admin/support staff positions.
IB Diploma score comparison
Net Promoter Score (NPS)
Activities participation The average number of activities that students in each grade took throughout the year. Activities at Dover Campus 9 6
G9 G10 FIB G11 G12
Activities at East Campus
Number of Global Concerns
Number of Local Service partners
Number of College Services
G9 G10 FIB G11 G12
$945,850 Money raised by students through the UWCSEA Service programme
April 2018 Dunia | 15
THE NARRATIVE OF By Nick Alchin High School Principal and Deputy Head of East Campus Anyone who follows anything about education or popular culture will know that student mental health, and the flipside—mental illness—are big areas of concern in systems across the world. Fingers have been pointed to mobile phones, technology in general, the increasingly competitive pressure to get into college, the shifting employment outlook, the environmental outlook, toxic political discourse or school cultures which repress creativity and demand conformity. All these are worth addressing, of course, and are the subject of debate as we increasingly seek to promote student well-being. That said, I think the truth is not likely to be easily located in one specific area, and there may be other things to do to address the issue, as well as seeking to remove stressors. The all-knowing arbiter Google Trends suggests that interest in well-being has soared in recent years, with searches on the keyword well-being increasing fourfold in the past 10 years. This global issue is, however, plagued the by lack of clarity of what well-being actually means. One definition that we have found helpful is that from Dodge et al, (2012) who define well-being as the 16 | Dunia April 2018
balance point between the challenges we face, and the resources we have to draw on. In seeking this balance, we must often look to reduce the challenges—especially, for example, in a crisis. But perhaps the longerterm solution is to build capacity in individuals so we have more resources to draw on; that is, to address the other side of the balance. If we can do that then meeting the challenges today and in the future may not seem so daunting; this seems to me to be the sustainable thing to do, and what as educators, we should be focusing on. To understand the research, it helps to think about stories. Telling stories may seem a million miles from the harsh realities of anxiety, stress and depression, but in fact there is a powerful link. To understand why, if you aren’t familiar with it, do watch the classic and famous video (Heider and Simmell, 1944—refer to the QR code in the 'References' list), which shows a triangle, circle and square moving around a box. Put like that, it sounds rather dull, but in fact when we watch the video, we find it almost impossible not to tell ourselves a story. We all make narratives of some sort—perhaps not consciously—that likely stretch way beyond the events we see in the short clip; we add character, intention, ages,
family relations, and the likely events leading up to and following this story. Different people tell very different narratives; there is no single, ‘true’ story here. These are, after all just animated shapes onto which we have projected the narrative. That is, it is our narrative; and the overall story can be happy or sad, pessimistic or optimistic. A moment’s reflection shows that we behave the same way most of the time in everyday life; we interpret our daily events and place them in a broader context, telling ourselves stories as we do so. And it turns out that the specific nature of the details that we add are closely linked to our well-being—so much so that psychologists now refer to an optimistic or pessimistic explanatory style as a key determinant of well-being. This needs a moment to process as it is so counter-intuitive: the style of story we tell ourselves profoundly affects our mood. In fact, so much so that a good understanding here offers a tool with which to address the mental health issues that we are so concerned about. The research on this topic comes from positive psychology founder Martin Seligman, who has found three ways that we can nudge students to promote their well-being; by avoiding personal, pervasive and permanent narratives for troubling events.
Why the stories we tell ourselves are so important
F WHAT HAPPENS Avoid the personal
Avoid the permanent
Students who blame themselves for mishaps, without seeing context and other factors place themselves under a heavy burden. There is a world of difference between I am awful at tests and This was a very difficult test or between I am just not a Maths person and Trigonometry is difficult. In each pair, the former is framed in terms of personal identity, and can lead to nagging selfdoubt, whereas the latter opens up a completely different conversation.
This seems to me to be the most profound of the three elements. When a student can say This is tough, but it will pass there is a world of difference to This situation will never end; I can see no escape. There’s some link to the difference between a growth mindset and a fixed mindset, and one of the most moving breakthroughs I have ever heard from a student was when she described how she had come to see her (dangerous) depression like the weather—she said sometimes it’s pretty bleak, but I know now that it’s like the rain. It’ll go eventually; you just need to hunker down and wait.
Optimists blame bad events on causes outside of themselves, whereas pessimists blame themselves for events that just occur from time to time.
Avoid the pervasive When a student frames an upsetting social interaction as a limited Yesterday, the situation with X was upsetting rather than My friends always let me down, they are seeing one narrow thing, rather than a massive indication that something is wrong. This means that no single event needs to frame every single other thing that happens, and allows students to locate and contain difficult events. Optimistic people compartmentalise problems, whereas pessimistic people assume that a problem in one area of life means problems in life as a whole.
These ideas are sufficiently wellvalidated and robust that we can actively draw on them as we consider strategies and pedagogies to support our students not just through school, but through the challenges they will face through the rest of their lives. References • Anderson, C. R. (1977). "Locus of control, coping behaviors, and performance in a stress setting: A longitudinal study." Journal of Applied Psychology, 62(4), 446-451. • Dodge, R., Daly, A., Huyton, J., & Sanders, L. (2012). "The challenge of defining wellbeing." International Journal of Wellbeing, 2(3), 222-235 • Gilcrist, I. (2011) The Divided Brain. RSA Animate. • Heider, F. and Simmel, M. (1944) "Experimental study of apparent behavior." YouTube video:
Optimists point to specific temporary causes for negative events; pessimists point to permanent causes. The most encouraging part of this research is that we can control what types of stories we tell ourselves; and for schools this may be a way to address the rising tide of anxiety, depression and self-harm that is being seen around the world. We can actively build these ideas into our conversations and classes, actively teach students and teachers about framing. These skills can be learned over time; and we can use them to prevent our challenges from turning into our traumas.
• Konnikova, M. (2016) "How People Learn to Become Resilient." The New Yorker. • Seligman, M. (2006) Learned Optimism: How to Change Your Mind and Your Life. Nicholas Brealey Publishing. • Seligman, M. (2011) The Optimistic Child: A Proven Program to Safeguard Children Against Depression and Build Lifelong Resilience. Nicholas Brealey Publishing.
April 2018 Dunia | 17
MUSIC RECORDING STUDIO When it comes to music making at UWCSEA, students have access to not only outstanding teachers, instruments, and performance spaces, they also have the opportunity to utilise industry-standard recording studio facilities, software, and equipment. The recording studio at East Campus is a central feature of the Music programme. It is well-used, accessible, messy, and fully connected to music learning, practice and performance. Whether using one of the â€˜liveâ€™ rooms to practice with a band or ensemble, or to write and record original compositions, Music students benefit from having access to professional recording facilities. The studio runs industry-standard professional recording hardware and software, including a TASCAM 32-channel mixer, Logic Pro X, a Moog synthesiser, a Komplete Kontrol keyboard, amplifiers, and a variety of microphones for different jobs (e.g., vocal, instrumental) and sound quality requirements. The two adjoining 'live' rooms as well as the 15 Instrumental Teaching Programme practice rooms are all connected to the recording studio. 18 | Dunia April 2018
Access supports collaboration High School Music students are able to learn how to use the recording studio equipment and how best to utilise it for various purposes (e.g., recording, mixing, mastering). IB students in particular benefit from regular access, which encourages creative and generative collaboration among students. They also benefit from a very high standard of recording for their compositions and assessments. Younger students are also able to take advantage of the studio space; Grade 5 students write an original song each year for their Exhibition, which is recorded and produced in the studio. During school holidays, professional songwriters and producers from Songwork International have also offered courses and recording opportunities to students.
The man behind the board At the helm of the recording studio is Ashfie Ahmad, the recording and live sound technical officer. Ash is a fully-involved member of the Music Department staff, supporting Music lessons, Activities and Service. His professional skill, flexibility, and commitment to putting student learning first have all contributed to the full utilisation of the recording studio across the Music programme.
‘Live’ rooms The two ‘live’ rooms on either side of the recording studio are fully sound-proofed. A permanent set of instruments is available in each room along with amplifiers, speakers, microphones, a PA for vocals, and a back line. Instrument-isolating shields (around the drum set, for example) provide sound isolation which enhances the recording sound quality. These flexible, multiuse spaces can be used as stand-alone rehearsal space as well to record while composing or performing.
Stronger partnerships The recording studio has also supported our work with NGO partners such as Epic Arts and Cambodian Living Arts. When the groups have visited campus to work with students, they have also been able to work in the studio to produce high quality music recordings, which they may not otherwise be able to achieve. Students benefit from the experience and exposure of working with these organisations to produce recordings that will support their long-term organisational development and goals.
Student mathematicians put to the test at
SEAMC 18 SINGAPORE By Won Young Yoon, Grade 12, and Meher Pahuja, Anvita Bhagavatula, and Joanna Tasmin, Grade 11, East Campus We often joke amongst ourselves that SEAMC is SEASAC Math. But in fact, that was exactly what it was conceptualised to be. SEAMC’s founder, Steve Warry, envisioned math being conducted as a spectator sport. He believed that it had the same potential as sports to generate spirit and bring communities of people together. At SEAMC 18, we aimed to honour this ideology. This year, the South East Asian Mathematics Competition (SEAMC) gathered 777 students and 151 teachers in four locations—Seoul, Beijing, Manila, and Singapore. With 240 participants participating in nine intense rounds, SEAMC Singapore was this year’s largest qualifying round for the World Mathematics Championships. The competition comprised a variety of engaging activities involving thoughtprovoking mathematics, held both indoors and out. The participants were expected not only expected to think deeply about mathematics, but also collaborate with one another. As a result, this competition cultivated innovative mathematical awareness while bringing people together through the shared love for the subject. This year marked East Campus’ first time hosting the competition, a decade after Dover hosted it in 2008. Our school’s SEAMC Club was formed in August 2016, a result of our persistent advertisement through posters, emails, speeches in assemblies, and conversations with Middle and High School Mathematics teachers. In three months, the club grew to over 50 members. The student organisers worked closely with one another to produce a training programme that would allow UWCSEA participants 20 | Dunia April 2018
to excel. Tasked with preparing the weekly sessions while maintaining the ethos of the competition, they aimed to incite a passion for mathematics by devising a programme that, in addition to challenging the participants for the competition, also allowed students to explore the elegance of mathematics in unfamiliar contexts. There is no doubt that this year’s competition was the most successful to date for the UWCSEA East participants; they embodied the ideals that are the very essence of this competition: collaboration, creativity, and challenge. Ranking second overall, our school’s achievements are particularly commendable: Arunav Maheshwari (G8) was ranked 1st overall in the Junior category, and Kartik Shah (G11) ranked 2nd in the Senior category. We also had two students (Arunav Maheshwari and Saransh Malik) in the Junior bracket and five students (Aoi Izumi, Nishant Kumar Singhal, Shubham Bhargava, Siming Ji and Tatsuki Kuze) in the Senior bracket get into the Codebreaker finals. These were UWCSEA's best achievements over the past ten years, unprecedented feats in the school’s history. Following this success, we are excited that the SEAMC Club will continue to train future participants. We invite interested students to engage with this group of hardworking mathematicians and welcome anyone who is ready to embark on this challenging yet rewarding journey.
It is not knowledge but the act of learning, not possession but the act of getting there, which grants the greatest enjoyment.” C F Gauss
Students advocating for
SOLAR ENERGY By UWCSEA Foundation As Solar for East launched in March 2018, what began as a Grade 5 Expo project on Dover Campus in 2008 has become a College-wide mission to reduce our reliance on fossil fuels. The East Campus programme follows in the footsteps of the hugely successful Solar for Dover initiative, which has installed over 565 solar panels across two buildings since it launched in 2014. Solar for Dover remains a popular activity for Middle and High School students, and the team is currently just 20 panels away from reaching their 2017/2018 installation goal. Plans for the East Campus solar initiative have been months in the making, with students leading the charge for renewable energy. Working closely with Simon Thomas, UWCSEA's Director of Facilities and Operations, they created a proposal to install over 1,000 panels that will significantly reduce the College’s carbon dioxide emissions. “Energy generation is still the leading contributor of anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions. Despite the fact that
our buildings are quite environmentally friendly, we still consume 5,975 MWh of unsustainably generated electricity per year. Solar panels will help alleviate our harmful impact on the environment and potentially save 173,625.42 kilograms of carbon dioxide from being emitted each year,” explained Hemal, a Grade 9 student and founding member of Solar for East. Aside from enhancing environmental activism and awareness within the College, the solar programmes on both campuses provide a wealth of learning opportunities. Activities run each week, and student members lead the marketing, communication and fundraising elements of the programme. Solar for East and Solar for Dover are both fundraising partnerships with the UWCSEA Foundation. Portions of panels can be adopted, starting from as little as $100 and panels are installed in batches of 100. A core part of the programme is the opportunity to be involved in the physical installation process, which is led by students, together with staff from the Facilities team.
From class project to campus initiative Raghav Shukla '15 (Dover Campus) became interested in solar panels after completing his Grade 5 Expo project, which focused on sustainable energy. The idea of solar panels continued to weigh on his mind, so much so that in 2012 he decided to make contact with the Facilities Department and discuss his ideas. Following a positive reception to his ideas, he put together a proposal. In May 2013 he presented it to the Facilities Committee (which makes decisions about building development at the College), and it was approved. From there ‘Solar for Dover’ was presented to the College Board and adopted by UWCSEA Foundation as one of their fundraising projects for Sustainable Development. The programme launched in November 2014. Since then members of the community, including students, staff, parents and alumni have come together to adopt and install over 565 panels. To adopt a solar panel on either campus or to find out more about this remarkable programme, visit the Solar for UWCSEA website: https://www.uwcsea.edu.sg/solar April 2018 Dunia | 21
Community Fair On Saturday, 3 February, the Dover Campus community came together for its biggest fundraising event of the year, Community Fair organised by the Parents' Association Dover. The sun was shining and family and friends came out in droves to enjoy the fun-filled games and attractions, as well as fabulous food and shopping. A tent was erected over the Primary School playground, providing shade and a magical atmosphere. More than 12 attractions (including a lively student jam session) were spread around the campus with the Giant Robot Obstacle and Ultimate
Challenge Inflatables as firm favourites and the Tarp Surfing and the Pool Destroyer drawing the crowds. At the International Food Pavilion, more than 45 regional delicacies were on offer, including many healthy and sustainable choices. The student-led Global Concerns initiated a new shared profits system and we were proud to implement a zero-food-leftover initiative across the Fair. The soft launch of a new Community Market area highlighted green retailers with interactive platforms that engaged customers of all ages in fun and
interesting activities promoting healthy lifestyle changes. Close to $74,000 was raised, new sustainability milestones were reached, and significant gains in community building efforts and engagement were realised. All of this was made possible through the concerted efforts of the entire community and their friends. Thank you to the UWCSEA community for everyone’s assistance, hard work, patience, generous support and commitment to make this event one that sincerely reflects the ethos, mission and values of the College.
Family Festival The Parents’ Association (PA) East once again brilliantly facilitated the largest campus event of the year, bringing together the East community for a funfilled and entertaining day. With Family Festival falling on Saturday, 17 March and St Patrick’s Day this year, there was a dual-meaning behind the ‘green’ event theme as the PA, staff, students and parents worked together to promote sustainable practices and a zero-waste event initiative. Among the estimated 4,000 attendees, there was an effervescent energy in the air and delight on so many children’s
faces as they made their way around the many games, rides and activities. In full force was the core spirit of our campus community—passionate parent volunteers and dedicated staff and students who worked together to make sure every aspect and detail were covered.
showcasing their work and that of their partner organisations at the booths in the GC Bazaar and hosting activities around campus. Several sustainabilityfocused College Service groups were also on hand to share the work they do in composting, gardening, and the new Solar for East initiative.
For the first time, there were 10 parentled nationalities groups that provided food, working closely alongside the Green Fingers College Service group in support of sustainable practices.
The generosity of both sponsors and attendees will help PA East to support our GC groups and other special projects. Sincere thanks to PA East and all the students, parents, staff and friends who helped make the day a success!
Our Global Concerns (GC) and Focus groups did an outstanding job
SPOTLIGHT ON …
JUNIOR SCHOOL: CHANGEMAKERS LEARNING SHARE As the culmination of their Changemakers Unit of Study, Grade 2 students at East Campus transformed themselves into the changemaker of their choice. From Rosa Parks to Steve Jobs to Nelson Mandela to Malala Yousafzai, students dressed in costume and prepared a short speech and poster explaining why their changemaker was significant, demonstrating their understanding of the person’s impact on the world. During the unit, students were challenged to consider the ‘why’ and ‘how’ of making change happen— moving from ideas and motivations, to challenges and impact.
April 2018 Dunia | 23
SEASAC 2017/2 At UWCSEA, we strive for a sporting culture in which learning from failure as well as success is central. Students are encouraged to participate in a wide range of sports, rather than focusing on a single one, and to take responsibility for their learning both individually and as teams. The Sports programme teaches students life lessons and gives
them the opportunity to create new friendships and overcome challenges, rather than focusing on wins, losses or professional aspirations. 2017/2018 has again been a very successful year in sport across the College, with a combined 15 SEASAC Championship titles. Results however, are just the icing on the cake. The cake
itself is, more importantly, constructed out of solid work on a daily basis, built on a foundation of strong UWCSEA values. Our players embrace the mindset that ‘strong habits today will help fulfil our dreams for tomorrow’ and this year’s SEASAC results continue to reflect the students’ ongoing dedication and commitment to strong habits.
About SEASAC Established in 1995, the South East Asia Student Activities Conference (SEASAC) is an association of 15 international schools in and around the region. SEASAC promotes student/school activities which provide and encourage opportunities for healthy competition, pursuit of excellence, social and cultural interaction, and the development of friendships across the member schools. Annually, SEASAC events include sports tournaments, an Arts Festival, and a Model United Nations conference. 24 | Dunia April 2018
2018 ROUND UP East Dragons SEASAC results
Dover Phoenix SEASAC results Sport
Champions (Div 2)
Level 7 – 2nd Level 5 – 2nd
Level 4 – 3rd Level 3 – 3rd
Level 7 – Champions Level 3 – Level 6 – Champions Champions Level 5 – Champions
2nd April 2018 Dunia | 25
Extending the mission UWCSEA alumnus Dzameer Dzulkifli ’03 shares his hopes for Teach For Malaysia Originally published by UWC International. This version is reproduced with permission.
Photo by Louie Barnett
Since 2016, UWC International and Teach For All have been working together to increase educational opportunities for young people worldwide. The two organisations share existing links, with many UWC community members participating in and/or developing Teach For All network partner programmes. Students from schools with Teach For All partner teachers have also been successful in gaining places at UWC schools and colleges to continue their education. UWCSEA alumnus Dzameer Dzulkifli '03 is the co-founder and current Managing Director of Teach For Malaysia. Here, he shares his experiences as a UWC student and as an educator, as well as ways in which he is inspired to address the challenges of education inequality in his home country. When I entered UWCSEA in 2001, I was extremely skeptical of the UWC mission statement and values. I didn’t have a sense of purpose: aside from being full of teenage angst and wanting to rebel against the rules and the system, I didn’t understand what I was doing at UWCSEA. Having grown up in a wealthy family that was involved in the oil and gas industry, I was very aware of my privilege and thought it was unfair that I should have the opportunity to attend such a prestigious college without knowing what I wanted to do with that education. There were so many students at UWCSEA that had such great clarity about how they wanted to change the world, and I felt ashamed to be in the College with no clear purpose. In 2010, I experienced a lightning-bolt moment, and my UWC experience started to make sense to me. I realised that to solve some of our generation’s most challenging problems, it is critical to empower students. I found myself wondering whether the cure for cancer might lie in the heart and mind of a young student growing up in an underprivileged 26 | Dunia April 2018
Photo provided by Dzameer Dzulkifli
family—and this made me want to take the UWC experience across Malaysia. The Teach For All approach, which consists of recruiting top graduates that may have never considered a career in education to be full-time teachers in high-need communities for two years, resonated deeply with me as a way to make this happen. The real power of the theory of change is when a critical mass of young leaders and students are empowered through the two-year leadership development experience to drive systemic reform from both inside and outside of the classroom to bring down all the barriers holding back communities from achieving their full potential. We were lucky enough that the Malaysian Ministry of Education was exploring the idea of Teach For Malaysia at the same time as we made a move to found the organisation. Since 2012, Teach For Malaysia has impacted 73,000 students through 300 of Malaysia’s most promising future leaders. In 2015, we were recognised as the Best Graduate Programme and were a finalist of the Prime Minister’s Innovation Award. Our teaching alumni are widely recognised as young leaders in the field of education, and have accomplished such feats as: being the youngest state-level master-trainer in Maths and Science, driving whole school transformation to adopt 21st century pedagogy, starting a teacher-specific crowdfunding platform, launching a national English peer-to-peer mentoring programme, and assisting in the national roll-out of the new Computer Science Curriculum. We also hear examples of our teachers empowering students to identify local challenges tied to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals—there have been recycling programmes, entrepreneurship camps, partnerships with local organic farmers, and many more—which many UWC alumni take for granted as part of our education. In addition, many students have been able to learn English, which is an important goal
especially in rural communities. More importantly, we hear stories of our students being the first in their family to pursue tertiary level education. I hope that these students will one day sign up to be participants in Teach For Malaysia, to inspire the next generation of students. Given all these successes, there are probably just as many, if not more, accounts of failure and shortcoming. The challenges in addressing education inequity are incredibly complex. Students drop-out of school due to boredom or having to work to support their family. Child abuse cases go unreported. In some rare cases, children lose their lives due to recklessly riding motorcycles without a license. The biggest failure of all? Children going through the system not picking up basic education skills that will prepare them for the 21st century, or even having the courage to dream about their passion or their future. My vision for schools in Malaysia are as follows: I hope that schools become less about memorising facts that 'would be useful later,' and more about applying knowledge to solve the challenges that students see and face on a daily basis. I hope we can get rid of subjects and learn across multiple themes through an experiential process. I hope we can shift the education system to empower students to be leaders of their own learning, their future and, perhaps, of the future of Malaysia. The mission of UWC to use education as a force to unite different groups and cultures to create a more peaceful and sustainable future gives me goosebumps and Iâ€™m proud to be part of this global community. I hope one day, we can change the world.
About Teach For All Teach For All is a global network of locally-led partner organisations spanning 48 countries on six continents. With 15,000 participants and 55,000 alumni reaching 1 million students annually, each independent network partner works in their individual context but shares a common core purpose, approach, and commitment to addressing educational inequality. Each organisation recruits and develops promising future leaders to teach in their nationsâ€™ high-need schools and communities and, with this foundation, to work with others, inside and outside of education, to ensure all children are able to fulfil their potential. Teach For All celebrated its 10th anniversary in 2017, although member organisations were established as far back as 1990. Several members of the UWCSEA faculty started their teaching career as part of the UK chapter, Teach First, which was founded in 2002. Teach First, in common with other Teach For All network partners, aims to end educational equality by providing children (and communities) from lower socioeconomic backgrounds with access to inspirational leadership in the classroom in order to inspire and equip them to achieve their ambitions for a better future. To do this, Teach First carefully selects graduates to undertake their fully-accredited twoyear Leadership Development Programme. The LDP provides world-class teacher and leadership training for those who are passionate about giving every young person the chance of a better future. Many, but not all, LDP fellows go on to teach. Teach For Malaysia is part of the global Teach For All network. UWC and Teach For All have formalised a working partnership to collaborate and strengthen their respective missions through sharing opportunities and resources. For more information visit teachforall.org and teachformalaysia.org.
Practising what they teach UWCSEA East High School teachers Louie Barnett and Shilpa Patel are two of a number of Teach First alumni who were drawn to continue their teaching careers in the UWC movement by the alignment they feel with the mission. However, not content with empowering their students to enact the mission, Louie, Shilpa and their fellow Teach First alumni felt compelled to explore ways they can contribute directly to the mission of both UWC and Teach ForÂ All. The first step was making connections and welcoming a group of Teach For Malaysia staff and fellows (teachers currently teaching in Malaysia under the Teach For Malaysia scheme) for a research visit to East Campus last year. During the visit it was evident that, just as the UWC movement and Teach For All are seeking alignment on a global level, there were synergies between UWCSEA and Teach For Malaysia to collaborate locally. The challenge was to identify the areas where both organisations could benefit the most, and one of these was to explore opportunities for professional development. As a result, current Teach For Malaysia fellows were invited to attend the recent UWCSEA-organised Teach Up teacher professional development workshop, held at East Campus on Saturday, 8 March. Following the workshop, a core group of seven enthusiastic UWCSEA faculty, Teach First and Teach For All alumni in the region, and Johor Bahrubased Teach For Malaysia staff and fellows held a collaborative session. The afternoon was spent sharing ideas for supporting each other in individual teaching practice and brainstorming opportunities for collaboration in the future, from aligning organisational activities to developing leadership in classrooms and communities. April 2018 Dunia | 27
Meet the Dover High School Principal
Rebecca Butterworth By Giole Trabucchi, Grade 11, Dover Campus Only a single word can describe my first impression of Rebecca Butterworth: approachable. Upon entering her office, we quickly started a conversation about the student art hanging in her office. There was barely any hesitation in her manner and throughout the interview it became clear how interested she was in the thoughts and opinions of the student body; a deep sense of care that is one of her most incisive and impressive character traits. When discussing her goals for High School students, Rebecca talked about the importance of creating an environment that both simultaneously challenges and supports. Rebecca’s pursuit of ‘excellence’ for students is not simply focused on academics but is an overarching aim for all facets of a UWCSEA student’s life. She is keen on providing each and every student with a network of connections that create a ‘safety net’, especially by “fostering the student’s voice”. To Rebecca, it is all about bringing existing connections between individuals at UWCSEA to the next level and amplifying their effect. Counsellors, Heads of Grade, Principals, teachers all make up a support network for students that can be readily accessed. Of particular interest was our discussion about the Student Council, and the support and representation they provide on behalf of students to the College leadership. One of Rebecca’s strategies is to challenge the mode in which the Student Council operates and how it interacts with the rest of the student body. She emphasised the need to move the Council away from a hierarchical and operational mindset to a more collaborative approach in order to allow the Student Council to have a bigger impact. It is imperative that students see how impactful the Council could be if student engagement increased; thus helping the Council to articulate its visions for the future. As our conversation continued, we delved deeper into subjects that lie close to Rebecca’s heart—the preservation of core skills and standards for every student while staying flexible in light of the role that technology will play in shaping the way future generations will learn. For High School students, educators
need to be aware of “the changing dynamic of universities”. As the High School curriculum is examination based, the challenge that excites her the most is to strive for the perfect balance between the practicality of such exam-focused structures and “cultivating energy and the efficacy of students to move out into a workforce that’s changing rapidly”. At this point our conversation naturally moved to discussing Artificial Intelligence (AI) and how the computerisation of labour challenges traditional high school programmes to shift and adapt. Striving for balance between what a high school is required to do and what a high school should do (in terms of preparing students for the future) is an evolving challenge that will surely be one of our new principal’s main targets during her tenure. When asked what attracted her to UWCSEA in particular, Rebecca draws upon the ethos of the College as her main source of inspiration. The UWCSEA ‘habitat’ engages her. She is particularly impressed by the College’s ability to create an environment for all kinds of personalities and cultures, a trait that she described as rather rare for a school of this size. Rebecca praises how “joyful” the majority of our community is, which makes working here a wonderful experience due to the fact that the enthusiasm of the student body reverberates throughout the school and its influence on the adult staff is substantial. What astonished me the most about Rebecca was her deep understanding of the school and how it functions despite being here for only a few weeks. She is extremely capable of inserting herself into a community and appreciating each and every individual, all incredible qualities for a Principal of the High School to possess. For Rebecca, the very opportunity of guiding students from their final years of secondary education to prepare them for future challenges is what fuels her everyday passion to do right by the student body. It is undeniable that being an educator is a true vocation for Rebecca Butterworth and her determination to find efficient solutions to High School’s biggest problems is ultimately what will make her a fantastic leader for all High School students.
Rebecca Butterworth joined UWCSEA in January 2018 after five and half years in Zurich, Switzerland. Rebecca holds a Masters of International Education from Australia and has 15 years of experience in international schools. Rebecca is joined in Singapore by her husband and their eight year old son. 28 | Dunia April 2018
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ARTIST-IN-RESIDENCE WORKSHOP WITH BAND OF DOODLERS Singapore-based mural artists, Band of Doodlers, led a workshop for East Middle School Art students on 25 January. In less than two hours, they created a collaborative mural, now installed outside the Black Box Theatre on East Campus. The workshop was funded by the Shripriya Mahesh Ramanan and Ramanan Raghavendran Artist-inResidence Programme through the UWCSEA Foundation.