Student Exchange to Foon Yew High School

photo taken from Foon Yew High School

As a fellow orchestra member, besides competitions and performances, trips like this is what I look forward to very much. Back in 2013, Foon Yew High School’s ( Kulai branch ) string orchestra came to my school for an exchange. This year, Foon Yew High School, the one in Johor, hosted an exchange consisting of string orchestras from 5 different high schools! Wow!

We departed to Johor around 7.00 in the morning. You could see the that most of us barely had our eyes open. As soon as the bus started to move, everyone was so tired that we all fell asleep. After a few hours including a stop at a rest are where we had lunch, we finally reached our destination. We were welcomed by the students there, who were super friendly and warm! All of us were a tad bit surprised by their warm welcome as it is not often that we see such spirit in our school where some people are a bit shy or unwilling to participate. They were constantly so high-spirited and always trying to create a cheerful atmosphere, especially during game sessions.

Thankfully, I was in the same team ( Starlord ) as my orchestra’s president, Miao Re and one of my section leaders, Anne. The other team members were really nice people too. We had sessions where our teams would practice a simple piece together which we had to perform on the last day of this exchange. We were also divided into A, B, C groups where we had to practice another harder piece to perform as an orchestra on the last day as well.

photo taken from Foon Yew High School

Looking outside from our dorms, we could Singapore just across the sea. The view there was just incredible, especially in the early morning when the sun rose. At night, we would run over to each other’s dorms for late night talks, which I really enjoyed. Oh, I also miss the mealtimes! We had a tradition where we would greet everyone from each school to eat before starting! It was pretty funny at first, but it was something small that made us all feel like a big family.

Their school was enormous. So, during the station game session and bath time, we had to run at the speed of light. The station game was really fun. For each game, the winner would get 4 notes, while the loser would get 8 notes. At the end of the game, one person from each team would have to play all the notes. The team with the shortest time wins. It was a really good concept, something I’ve never done before!

Despite all the fun, there were still people who only knew how to complain. Yes, the toilets were a bit a older than the ones in our school. Yes, the school was big and we had to walk a very long distance to reach another place. Yes, the food catered may not be what each of us like. However, we would just have to make do with everything. For this trip, we only paid RM100+, so we have to have in mind that we get what we pay for. You can’t possibly such a such which is considered small nowadays, and expect a 5-star hotel type of accommodation and food!

Through this exchange, I learnt quite a few things. One of it is that we have to appreciate everything that we have. Some of things that we have, others may not have. Vice versa. Secondly, it is important for every single person in a team to tolerate, look out and understand and cooperate with each other to make things happen. Otherwise, even the best plan will fail.

From my point of view, I could see that every single person, teachers and students, from Foon Yew High School worked really hard and put in a lot of effort to make this exchange the most wonderful experience for everyone. I am truly thankful for all their hard work and enthusiasm! This is one of the best memories I’ve ever had as a Kuen Cheng High School Philharmonic Orchestra ( KCPO ), previously known as Kuen Cheng High School String Orchestra ( KCSO )!

 

Love,

Zoe

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SPM 2016 Results

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photo taken from Kuen Cheng High School

It’s out! It’s out! After months of perpetual anxiety, it’s out! Now, I finally have room to breathe.

As we waited for our turn to get our results, the students’ chatter filled the room. I could see clearly the expressions on the face of each person who received their results. Some people couldn’t stop smiling, some frowned, some had tears welling up in their eyes. It was a day full of emotions for every one of us.

To be honest, I was really worried that I did badly. However, my results were quite good. Thank God! I thought I did quite well, but I could’ve done better. Seriously. What’s done is done. At least I tried! ( but not hard enough )

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photo taken from Kuen Cheng High School

That night, my family and I celebrated my results together. I’m extremely grateful for my supportive family. My mum even promised promised me a trip to Korea next year as a reward! Yay! I’m so excited! I’m really looking forward to travelling to Korea as I’ve never travelled to any other countries besides Singapore before!

Besides that, I also want to congratulate ( I’m a bit late though!) everyone, no matter how good or bad you did, you did your best! It’s okay! Do not fret over this too long because this is not the end! There will be many more challenges in the future, so make sure you try harder next time!

 

Love,

Zoe

February 2017 Mini Book Haul

After months of not buying any books due to the big black hole in my wallet, I finally managed to do a mini book haul this February, using money from the red packets I received during Chinese New Year.

I went to a local indie bookstore called Bookalicious in The Summit USJ. This store is literally every book lover’s paradise! It’s small and cozy but has a wide range of excellent selections. The owner is really friendly and helpful, and very well-versed in recommendations across multiple genres. Besides that, the book prices are much lower compared to other bookstores! I would definitely go back there again!

So, using my limited budget, I managed to pick up 3 books. One of them was also recently released!

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1. Caraval by Stephanie Garber

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2. The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton

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3. Cinder by Marissa Meyer

I’ve read many positive reviews about these books, so I’m pretty excited to start reading! 

Love,

Zoe

Graduation Book Photoshoot

After about a week since school started, individual and group photos were taken for this year’s graduation book. Every class will have their own theme, and I like how our class’ theme is, flower crowns and stuff. It’s so cute and has the fairy tale kind of feel. So here’s a few photos that we took the other day. I like how the filter comes out so nicely on these photos, which were taken with a DSLR camera. It almost looks as if we really went to a studio for a photoshoot! Hah!

Anyway, I’m really excited for this year. There will be so many activities, both inside and outside of school. I hope to make this year the best year ever and a memorable one for me to look back to even after I’ve graduated. Believe it or not, I’ve already made a list of things to do, events and competitions that I’d like to join, to make this year more productive than the last!

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This is one of the photos that I like very much! We look so cute here! I am extremely grateful and blessed to have my bunch of friends. Here’s to more photos and memories together this year and many years to come! β€

Love,

Zoe