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ACJC Debate Team going to the semi finals of the NUS Challenge Shield

By Anne Tan

Last Saturday, 31 Jan 09, the ACJC Debate team participated in the preliminary rounds of the NUS Challenge Shield (NCS). We are happy to report that we were able to break into the semis and will be at the NUS law campus on Valentine’s Day battling for the title.

When you say the word ‘competition’, people often think of a field, a ball and lots of sweaty players in school colours. Debate is one of the few CCAs where we go to competition in tie and black shoes, sit down in an air-conditioned rooms and ‘fight it out’ using mainly intellect and persuasion.

The NCS is seen as a fore-runner to the Nationals in April and is considered pretty prestigious in its own right. The competition prides itself on being both efficient and intellectually challenging as it demands policy debates; a format quite different from that utilised at the Nationals.

In the first preliminary round we beat Anderson JC in a motion about affirmative action. With one win each, ACJC faced Raffles JC in the next preliminary round. In a ‘knife edge close’ debate, we lost and the motion supporting tarriffs fell. In the last round we met National JC and were able to beat them, upholding the motion that national treasures should be returned to their country of origin. 

In the semis, we will meet Raffles yet again to fight for a place in the finals. Will history repeat itself? I, for one certainly hope not.

ACJC Debate has a long and illustrious tradition. As captain leading the team this year, I always feel both comforted and intimidated by this tradition. There is both so much belief and so much to live up to. As we go into this year’s competitive season, I ‘hope, work and pray’ that we will not let others or ourselves down.

Crusaders – the battles within

By OriAna

In the 3rd part of this 4 part series we have the leaders of the Crusaders.

Beverly Becker, the female clan head of the Crusaders is no lady in waiting. If anything she is the ‘bad girl’ among the clan heads. Beverly shared that she didn’t expect to be Clan Head. After all, she didn’t always obey school rules, was always being told to lengthen her skirt or not to use that coloured hair tie… She couldn’t possibly imagine herself in a position where she had to be an example of a ‘model student’ yet she has been granted it and with it a opportunity to change. Now, she admits that ‘integrity’ is the name of her game, She even ran all 10 rounds round the sports complex during PE even though there was no one supervising. Orientation hasn’t started proper and already she is changing. The Vice President of Arts Council said that she wouldn’t be surprised if the OGLs got more out of the camp than the incoming batch as to be in charge of people and putting the college values into practice is no easy task.  She said that it’s tiring just showing that you aren’t tired to everyone else who depends on you. Keeping her enthusiasm meter up even when she was tired is another thing she has learnt this month. This month has not been an easy one for her but though it has not been easy, she did say that it has been a positive experience so far and she hopes, like the rest to make Orientation 09 memorable for the J1s. 

Kris Foo, the other clan head thinks that Orientation 09 will be a “blast”. He thinks that what sets the Crusaders apart is that they are cool, not a ‘sunglass wearing cool’ but in a take it easy and relaxed cool kind of way. I don’t know if this is true but I guess we will find out soon enough.

 Interestingly enough, Kris also agreed that being Clan Head helped him grow. He said that “the OGL camp was a once in a life time experience, (that it) pushed me pass my limits and (built in me) character and (growth) as a leader. I realised that being a clan head requires more than passion and responsibility; it requires help from others and the support of the other OGLs”. Kris is known in school for being hard-headed and hard hitting, those who like him more say that he is a determined and self- sufficient leader. To hear him say that he has realised that the sheer force of his personality (though great) isn’t enough, that he does need people is I think a pretty powerful thing.

Orientation can change you and Kris is aware of this. He wanted to be part of it because he wanted to make an impact. I am sure he will. Orientation begins tomorrow for JC1s all over Singapore.

You are warned that it can be life-changing.   

Seniors Night 2008: Glitterati

Photos by Alvan Ng.

Words by CSW.

Except for the photos, this is a complete and utter work of fiction.

Scene: A ballroom filled with glitter and glamour, and all the hopes and dreams that an eighteen-year-old heart can hold…

Mr ACJC: The A-levels are over, I’m looking sizzling in a tux, and I’ve just been voted “Mr ACJC” by my peers! I feel wonderful! How about you, Ms ACJC?

Ms ACJC: (giggling nervously) Yes, yes, I feel great… it’s a great honour to be…

Mr ACJC: Is something bothering you?

Ms ACJC: No! No!… well… there’s this huge ARM there, on my right, just floating about. There! Can you see it? Who on earth does it belong to?

Mr ACJC: Forget about the arm, Ms ACJC. Let’s go stand in a line with our fellow OGL clan heads, where there’s an alternating series of guys AND girls…

(A Maths teacher interjects, rather sternly: “That’s NOT what “alternating series” means!”)

Mr ACJC: Unlike the soccer team…

A Soccer Guy: Hello ACJC! Hello fellow Soccer Guys! Let’s wallow in the warm vibes of the Soccer Brotherhood!

2nd Soccer Guy: Yeah, who needs girls?

Another Soccer Guy: Um… well… it would be nice to have a dress or two to liven this photo up. Dark suits can get a bit dull…

2nd Soccer Guy: But there’s so much variety in contemporary menswear! Just take a look at those Ruggers over there, crouching behind the leafy bank.

2nd Soccer Guy: We’ve got the casual shirt with the sleeves roguishly rolled up; the preppy waistcoat; and even a debonair fellow in a tux a la James Bond.

1st Soccer Guy: Anyway, clothes do not necessarily make the man. Check him out…

1st Soccer Guy: A plain shirt, accessorised with some gerberas and hair gel – and, presto! Mr Eye-Candy himself!

Azlan – Do you hear the Lion roar?

By OriAna

This is the 2nd in the 4 part series featuring the clan heads of 2009.

In this instalment I bring you Azlan, the lion. Named after the Lion in the Chronicles of Narnia, Azlan is headed by 2 people who are lions in their own right.

Taken by Olivia WongIsa, the male clan head, looks like a lion. I can easily imagine that the Rugby Vice Captain looking pretty fierce on the field with his large rugby build and thick hair (only during OGL camp. In early Jan, during school time it’s always short and neat so he is obeying college rules). Yet, like Azlan in the story, one is always assured that he will use his power benevolently; as although he looks tough, this arts student has a sensitive soul and loves reading the likes of Jodi Picolt and John Grisham.

Isa is proud to be an ACSian and is glad for the unique opportunityas being clan head has presented him with an opportunity to live out the AC spirit. To him, the AC spirit was present during the camp, especially the times he was not there. On the last day, he had to go to ACS (I) to play a friendly match and had to leave camp early. What he did not expect was that all the OGLs would come down to hold a mass rally in front of ACS (I) to support him and Fadhill  (Aetos clan head, you will notice the clan heads are only from a few CCAs). He said that the cheering helped and that it ‘intimidated’ the ACS (I) ruggers. I think the cheering definitely worked since they won the match! Isa said that that event epitomised the AC spirit for him as it showed the support system and sense of community that ACJC is all about. He said the team is small this year compared to the ACS (I) team and they didn’t expect to win yet they did with the OGLs cheering them on. All I can say is that’s the AC spirit for you.

The lady of Azlan, Joy Sim, is a lioness too. The power behind the throne, she is the one who does most of the administrative duties, setting deadlines and planning things, “Isa executes”. The Vice President of AC Dance is a busy girl with plenty of responsibilities. She was one of the hardest to get down for an interview, so much so that we conducted the interview while walking to the canteen! However, despite the outward appearance of being conscientious and thoughtful, Joy said that she loves being a clan head because it is ‘fun and exciting’. She particularly enjoyed filming the video. Apparently she liked painting her face and having the creative space to contribute to the storyline.    Taken by Jasper Wong

Orientation, I’ve realised is not a ‘Council’ affair or an ‘OGL’ thing. It is something that we all contribute to, in our own small way as we welcome a new batch. We are all empowered to go out of our way to show somebody the ropes, if we bother to try. After all the AC spirit is all about a support system and a sense of community.

AC Celebrations – ‘Backstage’

by Alon Ramos Mendez

Excitement. Tension. Foundation. These are three things that comprise every dance performance on stage. While everyone else was sitting comfortably in the Hall watching in the safety of their plastic seats, the dancers were at the Aerobics Studio warming up and cleaning up the Chinese New Year Dance which we finished learning three days before the actual performance (Rushed much?!).

Once Kris the Pres was satisfied with the dance, off to the best part of the studio: the mirrors! Within minutes, a red mass grew in front of the mirrors like a malignant tumour. Faces pressed forward, the dancers did each other’s make-up. Even the guys weren’t spared. Foundation was being passed around like bottled water and a full tub of hair gel dwindled into oblivion within minutes. We were going for the little-boy-from-China look and the naturally spiky hair styles took A LOT of skill, perseverance and hair gel to tame and flatten. The makeup was next. For the occasion, the main accent was the blusher… lots and lots of blusher (we called it the Pikachu look). Just an aside: one of my friends, the Banyan tree, was pleading to put some eyeliner because he believes his eyes were not defined enough (oh the vanity!).

Armed with our pink fantasy water sleeve fans, the guys headed to A2.03 clad in our Chinese New Year costumes and walking on jazz shoes. The girls had the less conspicuous yellow fans.

Quarantine. I’m guessing 20 minutes. That’s how long we were stuck at A2.03 and the expanse of time when the room was filled with flashes of white light. With Kristopher Fu consistently reminding us to ‘keep stretching’ and Joy Sim intermittently declaring we should ‘reserve our energy’, the room was in a constant flux of enthusiasm and rest.

Finally, we were called up. Off to the backstage where we prepared and waited for our turn to take the stage. Chow Pei Yan and her sister were still playing when we got there and the tension was palpable. With a quick group huddle and a quiet, “Go AC Dance!”, we took our positions as the curtains closed.

Then, the music started playing and the magic of being a part of a performance drenched the stage once more. It felt natural. It felt right. As we constantly danced in and out of the stage, I began to wonder whether sometimes the performers enjoy the performance more than the audience. And with a beat, we ended with a pose. A happy picture of energy and vibrancy suspended in time on stage.

As we took our bow and went backstage to wait for the sing-along session, I felt the surge of energy from the dance and heard the enthusiastic applause. Job well-done.

Ironically, going back onstage to merely stand in front of the crowd and  sing along proved harder and more nerve-wracking (especially if you have absolutely no idea what on earth you’re singing!). Some shoving and lots of ‘no, you go in front!’ took over the stage. The dancers took the first few rows and the foreigners\ even pretended we knew what we were singing.

It was a great affair, all in all and the perfect prologue to our four-day happy ending.

So to every one out there, Chinese, Indian, Malay, Filipino, Indonesian, Thai, Vietnamese, Malaysian, or whatever , have a great weekend!

Gong xi fa cai!

AC Celebrations – ‘Front Stage’

By Anne Tan

Fun, fun, fun. These are the words that I think best describe AC celebrations 09. The performers with their twinkling eyes and megawatt smiles; looked to me like they were having fun. The audience with their spontaneous clapping and boisterous laughter; looked to me like they were having fun. Mr. P Sum with his enthusiastic voice and random remarks as he led the singing; looked to me like he was having fun.

Today’s AC celebrations was by and for the class of 09. This meant that the crowd was relatively small and that everyone knew at least one person performing. This made it seem like an unusually large party for the JC2s with people cheering things like ‘go so and so’ to their friends on stage. But more than being a big party, the concert was also a showcase of our talents and a sneak preview to our SYF performances this year.

The first performing arts group which took the stage was the Chinese Orchestra. Now, I’m not a great fan of Chinese music but I was blown away today. The energetic pieces were a brilliant start to the concert. What impressed me most were the drum segment and the precision in their playing. The String Ensemble followed with 2 lively pieces and the sounds made me feel like getting up to dance… especially the second song, ‘Shanghai Jazz’. The concert than took a more romantic and sentimental turn when ACSian theatre danced to ‘The Moon Represents My Heart’. In their flowy rose – red costumes, they captured the dreamy atmosphere of walking under the moonlight with your lover. The Guitar Ensemble then went on to show me the melodic variety a guitar ensemble could accomplish together with ‘Yesterday Once More’ and a medley of ‘Gong Fu Fighting’ and ‘Gong Xi Gong Xi’. The last performing arts group ended the morning with a bang. AC Dance delivered yet another colourful and creative dance today. I particularly enjoyed the dance movements which required a fan. The dancers looked so elegant.

Aside from the performing arts, the cultural societies also put up performances. The Chinese Cultural Society did a drama of ‘Mickey Mouse’ choosing the next President for the year of the Ox. Their creative punning of the word ‘Ox’ led to some pretty interesting characters vying for the title. But  what was most memorable about the performance was the fact that despite technical difficulties, the show did indeed go on and they were still able to finish the item successfully. The Indian Cultural Society went next. They delivered a dance that combined modern and traditional Indian dance moves. Frankly, the girls were wonderful and attractive dancers, the guys on the other hand were technically not as strong ,  save one ( I think you know which one I am talking about!). However the guys more than made up for their lack of technique with their sporting and somewhat comic dance moves. Kudos to them, honest! Last but certainly not to be outdone was the Malay Cultural Society. Delivering a Dikir Barat (a traditional Malay art form), they replaced the lyrics from popular songs such as ‘Disturbia’ and ‘Womanizer’ (tongue in cheek) into Chinese New Year related lyrics.  

All in all it was an extremely entertaining morning and a great start to a long weekend of festivities.

Wishing everyone a Happy Lunar New Year!

OCIP Sarawak 2008

By Daphne Foo


Our Year 6 class!

Day 2
Being our first day of teaching, I had mixed feelings. I felt both excited and scared. I was excited because we were finally at the school and going to teach the children what we had been planning for weeks. But I was afraid that things that we had plan might not turn out as well as we had expected, and was also nervous about the Year 6s who my group was going to teach.

When we arrived at the school, we were greeted by the teachers and the students were all looking curiously at us. The prefects helped to arrange the students in rows according to their levels and we witnessed their morning assembly where they sang their national anthem, school song and pledge. The Year 1s and 2s looked so adorable and innocent. When I panned the scene,  I saw the Year 6s. The guys looked very fierce and I was immediately intimidated. They had their collars up and were playing with each other during assembly. (Oh no!)



Students dancing the traditional dance

Max, Jeremy, Steph and Jocelyn with the preschoolers and Year 1s

After assembly, we were brought on a school tour and after that, we began lessons. When Jun Yang, Desmond and I stepped into the class, the children looked at us intently. My heart was beating quite quickly. Having already memorized the lesson plan for the day, I started with the first activity – making their own name tags. We gave them instructions and they gave us a blank stare. I forgot to speak slowly! The rest of the day went on quite smoothly. We gave them animal biscuits which they enjoyed. From the several activities we carried out and the worksheets we gave them, we identified what they enjoyed doing and what they were weak in so we had to go back and modify our lesson plans. Also, the children were very hesitant about speaking up and they would cover their mouths when they answered, even if they answered correctly. Being the first day, they were very shy and quiet. Speaking to them was also quite awkward as we did not know if they understood us.

When school ended, we went back to Agrotouri Longhouse (where we stayed) to eat lunch before heading back to school again to clean up and reorganize the library. We brought along new books to add to the library. The library was quite small, with a few wooden tables and chairs. There were 2 computers but they were all spoilt. We took out the books from the dusty shelves and cleaned the dust out. There were cobwebs everywhere. It was quite gross. We took 2 days to clean all the shelves and to reorganize the huge heap of books, ranging from Malay books, to English books that were non-fiction and fiction. It was quite funny to see some of us confused by the words “fiction” and “non-fiction”. After reaching high up to clean the shelves, sorting out the books into different categories, wiping the tables clean and sweeping the dirty floor, we were all very exhausted. However, after the 2 days of cleaning up, we were delighted to see how much cleaner and organized the library was and hope that the students will actually come and visit the library.

Day 5

The last day of teaching! We started lessons earlier because we had to end earlier for the Year 6’s graduation party. We maximized all the time we had during lessons very effectively, not wanting to waste any precious time with them on the last day. The children were all very engaged and excited because our theme for the day was sports, something they could relate to very well. As I watched the kids actively participate in the lesson, a sense of pride welled within me. This was a stark contrast to the first day where they were all so hesitant to answer and only the same few would give answers. Now, everyone was confident to answer in English.

Cheering session!

Towards the end of the lesson, things did not really go as planned. A boy made a girl cry and this spoilt the entire mood and atmosphere of our farewell activities as a class. We tried to console the girl which took quite a long time. In the end, we just proceeded with the things we had planned like taking pictures, giving them our letters, and giving them all the leftover sweets we had. Before the graduation, we performed a dance for them. Orientation mass dance of course! (the only dance we all knew) We only practiced the night before so it was quite messy but we all had fun. The children also performed dances for us. We also shouted cheers which they really enjoyed. During the graduation, we witnessed all the Year 6s received their certificates and testimonials. I was touched by the fact that they willingly came back to school even after they had graduated and I am glad they had a great time during the time we spent teaching them English. We also forged close friendships with the children and promised that we would continue writing to each other.

During our rest time, a group of us (Jun Yang, Desmond, Ernest, Wen Jing, Julia, Serena and I) decided to walk to a kampong to visit the kids there. We were quite surprised when Ms Ho wanted to come along. She thought we were going to look around at a nearby kampong, when in actual fact we were going to visit our students at a kampong quite far away! Well we thought the kampong was nearby too considering the students walk to school everyday. So while the rest of our friends stayed at the longhouse to rest, we eagerly embarked on our journey to Kampong Bayur. While we were walking, it started to pour. Fortunately, we had several umbrellas and ponchos to keep us relatively dry. Just as we thought we were reaching, we saw a long stretch of a road and a steep hill in front of us. Oh man…might as well continue walking since we have already walked this far.


On our way to Kampong Bayur              


 Say cheese….at Iren’s house

When we reached Kampong Bayur, we saw houses in quite poor conditions. The locals looked at us curiously. We approached several locals and asked them where the kids lived. They stuttered something in Bidayuh which was incomprehensible. Finally, thanks to our broken Bidayuh (their local language) which we learnt from the kids at school, we managed to ask a kid to lead us to the long house. When we stepped into the corridor, it was dark and gloomy. My heart was palpitating rapidly because I thought there might be some rats scurrying around in the shadows. We walked past each door. 1….2…..3………….and finally 8! We found the door to Iren’s (our student) house! We were all elated. The door was already open and the kid excitedly ran into the house. After a while, we were invited inside.

The house was surprisingly big. It had two stories and had linoleum tiles! Jun Yang commented that it was bigger than his HDB flat and Ernest said that his impression of a house they would live in was one made of straw! (Hahahaha! Like the 3 little pigs??) Honestly, I also thought they lived in houses made of some flimsy materials, but their houses were surprisingly modern. Iren’s family was very warm and hospitable. They even made us Milo and gave us bananas to eat. We sat in a circle and talked to them, understanding them and their culture better. After a while, we asked Iren to find all the kids who we taught and lived in the same kampong to come and they all gathered in her house. We all chatted some more and even arranged to meet at the Serabau waterfall the next day. I felt the kampong visit was indeed a trip worth going and we all had a great time. Even Ms Ho said it was worth the hour long walk! We walked most of the way back and we were picked up by a truck which was driven by our host as we were nearing the Agrotouri Longhouse. We stood at the back of the truck and enjoyed the wind!

At night, we headed to the jungle for a night trek. It was a trek that I was definitely not looking forward to. Trekking not something that I particularly like and my shoes will have to get all muddy! To ensure that we would keep quiet during the trek, our guide, Reeves, tricked us by saying that there were spirits in the forest and we were going to visit their ancestors’ grave. I freaked out when I heard that. During the trek, I was looking at the ground most of the time, careful not to step into a slosh of mud or a muddy path. There were so many obstacles such as tree roots, branches and leaves in our path. Halfway through, we had to cross a river, cleaning our shoes simultaneously. When we finally finished the trek, I heaved a huge sigh of relief. I was so glad it was over and I admit I didn’t exactly enjoy it.

It was a day packed with adventure. It was our last day of teaching, we managed to visit Kampong Bayur which I absolutely enjoyed, and finally, we did a night trek.


Crossing the river during the night trek

Day 7
I woke up bright and early and was the first time I wore my home clothes instead of our collegiate shirts, because we were going to attend mass at a nearby church. I was quite excited as I was curious what the church would be like and also some of the children I knew were going to be there! At breakfast, Julia made a passing remark that the service was going to be in Bidayuh, and it was then I realized that I wasn’t going to understand anything. For some reason or another, I assumed it was going to be in English.

When we reached the church, it was already half filled with people. We sat at the back of the church and waited for service to begin. We were welcomed by a few people (I couldn’t really see who) in both Bidayuh and English. At first I thought it was quite interesting as I observed the people and what was going on. Eventually, after an hour, mass finally ended and we went back to the longhouse to participate in the activities planned for us.

Our first activity was rafting. Fortunately, we did not have to build a raft; it was already done for us. Before lunch, we practiced rowing the raft with our partners. We headed to the pond which was behind our longhouse. The raft was quite sturdy and was made of bamboo. Rafting is similar to kayaking, just that the raft is not streamlined. I found it quite easy to maneuver the raft up and down the pond. Some of the others found it quite difficult to steer the raft. We practiced a few times with our partners, getting ready for the race which was to be held after lunch.


Ian Yang and Serena getting ready for their race!

We ate a hearty meal and were all geared up for our first ever pond rafting race. My partner, Wei Hua and I were the first pair to compete with another pair. We paddled as we had practiced before and managed to overtake the other team. It was fun but tiring. I had to use quite a lot of energy to paddle. After that, we sat at an area overlooking the pond. It was very amusing seeing some people putting up a show for us, as they made formations with their rafts. They kept colliding into the other team’s raft and formed letters like “V” and “T”. After a whole round of competing and cheering, Nadiah and Wen Jing emerged as the winners! The teachers then tried their turn at rafting and competed against some of the kampong children who came to visit us. They both paddled very hard and managed to win the small children by a lot! It was all in the name of good fun.


Our attempts at fishing   


 Grace and Jocelyn’s masterpieces

Next, most of us tried fishing while Jocelyn and Grace did some weaving. I was very excited to try fishing because I had never done it before. Our bait was belachan instead of worms. The children came and helped us. (They are fishing pros!) They helped me put the bait on the hook while I held onto the rod. Every time I raised my fishing rod, the belachan was gone and I did not catch any fish. When they held the rod for me, they always managed to fish for something. When Julia caught the first fish, both of us started screaming because we did not know what to do. One of the children expertly held the fish and put it on the floor and stepped on it until it died. I was very impressed. We stayed at that area for a while more before heading to the other end. There, we caught larger fish and I caught my first fish! I was thrilled. When I put the hook into the water, I felt a thug on it and immediately raised the rod. It was easier to fish because the fish were bigger and I could actually feel it when it bites onto the hook. Although I only caught 3 fishes, I was very satisfied with myself. In the end, I found out that we were not going to eat the fish and was quite sorry for all the fish we caught.

Being our last night at the longhouse, our host invited some prominent people of the community for dinner such as the reverend of the church, the principal of the school where we taught and a few teachers. There were also performers dancing for us. There was one tribal man who performed and his performance freaked me out because he looked menacing. He was brandishing a parang and kept on staring me. The other performers showed us the traditional dances of different tribes. There were many locals standing outside, curious to know what was happening. As expected, the adorable school children were there again. After dinner, we took our final photos with them before leaving for home the next day.


Scary man sharpening his blade

Performing a traditional dance

It was an exhilarating Sunday with local activities planned for us. This was refreshing change from the usual sightseeing activities one would do one a school trip and we all enjoyed ourselves thoroughly.

Aetos, to soar on wings like eagles

By OriAna

“A law was made a distant moon ago here:
July and August cannot be too hot.
And there’s a legal limit to the snow here
In Camelot.”

This year during Orientation, the 33rd student Council and the Orientation Group Leaders (OGLs) bring Camelot to ACJC with the 4 clans in search of ACalibur.

In the first of this series of this feature I will bring you the clan heads of Aetos.

Ladies first, though Lydia Lam maybe clan head of the clan named after the Eagle in Greek Mythology, Aetos, Lydia has none of the menacing power of an eagle. In fact, the unassuming girl with a bubbly voice and wacky dance moves is anything but. Lydia’s major selling point as clan head is that she’s dedicated and really wants to make sure that everyone, the ‘kids coming in’ and the OGLs have a good and unforgettable experience. She particularly hopes that the batch coming in will be entertained and bonded after the one and only Orientation that they have.

As an AC dancer and clan head, she with Timotheius, Michelle Chye and Vanessa Leong choreographed the singles dance. While Timotheius and Xin Jie choreographed the couples dance. The general focus of the dances is not to look glam or to be technically difficult but to just have fun doing it. I’m not an OGL but I hear it is fun to dance, a credit to the choreographers.

Lydia is the only girl, Fadhill is the guy in the middle at the backFadhill is her partner in crime for Orientation or to be more precise her fellow clan head. Like her, Fadhill is all about the people. With a contagious smile and his own brand of goofy charm, it is no wonder that he relates well to people. To Fadhill OGL camp was a ‘great success’ cause you go ‘from knowing no one to knowing everyone’. This ability to relate to all sorts of people is undoubtedly something that people took into account when choosing him as clan head.

Before I leave Aetos I must tell you what the clan heads think makes their clan special. They said that ‘the rest may always be really enthusiastic but when we want to try, Aetos really stands out during the walk- ins and rallies’. Also, in Aetos it is not always the clan heads leading, as people like Loga step up and lead as well. May the clan of Aetos, our eagle of integrity, soar on wings like eagles. Or in Fadhill’s words “make memories and enjoy ACJC”.

Harping on Open House

13th January 2009.

harp ensemble at the viewing galleryharp ensemble at the viewing gallery 2

That’s right, 13th January 2009. That was our ACJC Open House and the Harp Ensemble was honoured to be able to showcase our skills in the viewing gallery.

To be truthful, we could do with more practice in preparation for Open House  but in spite of our fear and worry, we stepped forward and played to the best of our abilities for AC!!

The Harp Ensemble had 3 different songs to select from; “You Raise Me Up”, “Canon in D” and “Flower Duet”. We could only play 1 song at each performance, except during the very last one when we were given 2 songs.

Besides the performance at the viewing gallery, we had a booth in the Hall where we exhibited one of our Artone Harps and other achievements by our seniors. Plus, to make things exceptionally special, we made harp-shaped souveniors to give out!

harp ensemble boothArtone Harp at the booth

I really enjoyed myself at this year’s Open House. Even though I was stuck at the viewing gallery for what seemed like a century, it was fun to be able to play alongside the Choir, String Ensemble and Guitar Ensemble. Yup, that’s right. We didn’t play together but visitors who went to the viewing gallery had a musical treat! Each performance was by either the String Ensemble or the Guitar Ensemble followed by the Harp Ensemble and finally the Choir! Just as Mr. Patrick Sum said, having 4 music based performing arts groups housed together, playing, sharing and enjoying each other’s music is simply magical.

Even though Open House is over, I certainly hope that all 4 music-based performing arts groups will have a chance to collaborate together and showcase our talents.

I have one last final comment…on behalf of the Harp Ensemble, I really want to thank all the guys in choir for always helping us to shift our harps back to our music room! Your help (and muscles) are really appreciated!

Signing Off,

Miss Harr-Py.

Open House 2009

By Bernadette Tan

Mrs Jenny Ng started the opening ceremony with the words ” we are a very special batch” I thought she was going to talk about results, the sporting season ahead of something like that. However she said that we were special because we get to do Open House twice. I admit I was a little sad to think that that was her definition for special. I can think of many other reason we are special. But I guess her point is valid none the less.

Doing Open House twice is indeed an honour. Not many people get to not repeat the mistakes they made the first time round. I would say we were incredibly efficient at setting up our booths, I know that by 11am people had enough time to play volleyball at the basketball court because there was nothing to do already. But then again people streamed as early as 12. I personally talked to a girl and her parents at 1230. People came early and stayed till quite late. Even at 5 30 pm people were coming to look for conducted tourguides. I took two groups on tour, both were a small groups of girls but one was a group of Sec 4s from MGS and the other potential J1s from Fu Hua Secondary. Both groups were interested and quite fanscinated by our large school. Walking around everyday we can sometimes curse its big size or take it for granted, I guess it took me 1 Fu Hua girl to be reminded that even the land we have is a blessing.

Compared to last year’s Open House, this year’s was a success. The last time I saw that many people in the Hub was during Orientation’s subject registration. People seemed geniuely interested in us and wanted to know how students felt in ACJC; not just what the teachers had to say. To every potential person who told me that they were most probably coming to ACJC I said,” I will look forward to seeing you at Orientation”

I think what will separate ACJC from other school is the spirit that every one of us has and I hope that during this Open House that the people that came will be able to feel this spirit and know that it isn’t just for show but for everyday.

Thank you for all the people that worked hard to make it a success because we are everything together.

Peter Wang: musings from the President

By OriAna

Peter Wang is a face we know well, after all we see him make announcements every other week during the school term. At the close of this year I interview our president of the student council to ask him his thoughts. In the following msn interview he reflects on this year and writes about his ‘aims, hopes and dreams’ for the year ahead.

Q What do you feel about being president of the student council?

A: Being president has really been a very big privilege and honour for me and I’m truly very appreciative that i can be the the one to represent ACJC; as well as my fellow peers to the administration. However, obviously with the privilege came the pressure and the anxiety. As well as a number of hiccups along the way X) But yep…I’ve learnt to settle into the role rather comfortably (I think)

Q: Was it expected?

A:Whether or not I expected it…um..part of me was really hesitant to run for president. Mainly ‘cos I knew that it would take up a huge proportion of my time for the next year, but the other part of me was telling me to ‘just wack’. Yep so I prayed about it over a church camp that I had in June. And I spoke to my mum about it and she gave me the confidence to go for it. I wouldn’t say I was certain of being president though. Far from. I was thinking about it through out our whole june camp, and the thought of being in charge of 37 other people whom I barely knew then was quite daunting…so yea in that sense I really didnt know if i stood any chance. ‘Cos you don’t really have any sort of marker to see how much people want you to be their president…and I obviously didn’t go round asking so yea…there was really quite a lot of uncertainty

Q: Has it changed you? How have you think you have grown?

A: To be honest I wouldn’t say that it has changed me a lot so far. But I mean my term as president is far from over…and the bulk of the work is still to come. Ask me again at outvest and I’m sure I’ll have much much more to say then haha.

Q: What are your hopes for the year ahead?

A:I’m hoping for 2 things. Firstly for the JC1s, that they will come in and learn to love the college. To help them to see why ACS is unlike any other school. To show them that acsian spark you know haha. For the J2s, I hope that with the super hectic year ahead, with like all the nationals and SYFs and A levels, that we will be able to really draw closer as a class of 2009. To form bonds and friendships that will last us a lifetime

Q: What is the AC spark, pray tell?

A: Haha that eternal question. Um..its the ‘cheekiness’ if i may say, haha. That extra flaire and strive for excellence and daring to be different. It’s the pride in ACS and looking out for each other. The pride of knowing you belong to a great school with a great bunch of people who will always look out for one another. When you think about acsians, you should think of pride, fun, and people daring to be different

Q: Can you give me some concrete things you want to see done next year?

A:For myself…there’s my rugby season…of course I want the championship this time..which has eluded ACJC for the past 3 years. Then there’s for the council, besides all the ad hocs that we have installed…oh by the way, you guys can look forward to smiley coming back to ACJC.

Q: What’s the smiley?

A: You don’ t know? Haha, Mrs. Chan will tell the school more next year, nearer to the date. It’s this huge smiley face painted on the floor. It was in ACJC for quite a long time but then with the construction of the new CPA he got destroyed…so we’re bringing him back to ACJC. The big deal is that it’s pretty awesome to have a huge smiley face painted on the floor. Anyway, besides successful ad hocs. I hope that the councillors will continue to grow closer and forge memories for a lifetime.

Q: If you could say one thing to everyone in school they could hold onto for next year what would it be?

A: Cherish your time in ACJC. Don’t be overly caught up just studying and be receptive to new ideas and people. After all it’s friendships and relationships that will ultimately be remembered.

Hard to Say Goodbye from Dreamgirls


Dreamgirls poster

We didn’t make forever. And now we’re standing here, helpless,
We each got to go our seperate way,
Looking for something to say.
We’ve been together a long time.
We never thought it would end.
We were always so close to each other;
You were always my friend.
And it’s hard to say good-bye, my love.
Hard to see you cry, my love.
Hard to open up that door.
You’re not sure what you’re going for.

I didn’t want this to happen,
But we shouldn’t feel sad.
We had a good life together.
Just remember, remember, all the times we had.
It’s not that I don’t love you deeply
You were my family
It’s just that I’m feeling there’s so much more
Waiting out there for you and me.

And it’s hard to say good-bye, my love.
Hard to see you cry, my love.
Hard to open up that door.
You’re not sure what you’re going for.

You’ll know I’ll always love you.
You’ll know I’ll always care.
And no matter how far I may go,
In my thoughts,
You’ll always be there.

(It’s so hard) hard to say good-bye, my love.
(Baby, it’s hard) hard to see you cry, my love.
(It’s hard) hard to open up that door,
When you’re not sure what you’re going for.

Yesterday was the J2s Seniors’ Night. It marks the end of their ‘A’ level exams and the beginning of their life outside ACJC. I write about this night not as a participant attending the event but as a planner, organiser and an onlooker.

The theme for the night was Glitterati and boy did the senior’s dress up. Everyone came in an interesting and colourful outfit (and yes, I mean some of the boys as well). It is easy to determine that the person that was most ‘glittered’ up was Kelly Kwan, Miss ACJC of 2008. With her midnight blue sequin dress she certainly did her best to dress for the theme of the night. However there were also others that were not as glittered up but equally eye catching. Joanne Chin in her Red- Greek- Goddess dress was certainly no wall flower and Teri Tan (the person who won the Miss Fashionlista award) was also stunning in a grey dress. When every girl is beautiful and every boy handsome it is possible to go on forever, however I will stop with a last mention of Gabriel Tan’s chequered scarf. Although it did not sparkle, it was well chosen. He indeed did deserve his award for Mr. Metrosexual.

The entertainment of the night was also pleasant if I do say so myself. Having been part of the planning you could say that I’m quite bias. But how can anyone go wrong when you have Frances singing that she doesn’t Want To Miss A Thing and Crystal and Gabrina singing how they Just Want To Be With You. Even the teachers had their fair share of excitement with the magician and of course, who can resist AC Dance? Even the unusual J1 duo with their quirky songs was liked by the J2s.

The awards given out for the night also had an interesting twist as the Seniors got to vote for whom they wanted to win. Cedric Goh was voted to be Mr. Eye Candy, Shernise Khor to be Miss Sweetie Pie, Aditya Singh was our Walking Dictionary, Kester Tan was our Mr. IT- savvy and You were my family
It’s just that I’m feeling there’s so much more
Waiting out there for you and me. Kenneth Lee was our Mr. ACJC.

Beyond these awards that had the student population vote the winners, there were the teacher’s choice awards for the comedians of the year. They were Richendra and our orientation Joaquin clan head, Ang Hoe Khoon.

But so much for the event itself, now it time to write about the song. Why was this song chosen? I had planned that this week I was going to write about Seniors’ Night. There are many sentimental songs that I could have chosen but I chose this one because it was upbeat and less sorrowful. Senior’s Night is not a sad event. It’s filled with photo taking, laughing and talking. Yet at the same time there is unspoken understanding. People know that they are closing apart of their life and some find it hard to open up that door, for their not sure what they’re going for. They all know that these two years in ACJC wouldn’t make forever and that eventually they would have to go their own separate ways. But they will always love each, always care, and as long as they remember all the times they had together, perhaps this may not be a final goodbye between themselves.

But for the school, as teachers send them off…

Yes, it’s hard to say good-bye, my love. Hard to see you cry, my love. Hard to open up that door when we’re not sure what you are going for. You were my family; it’s just that I’m feeling there’s so much more waiting out there for you.

So we say goodbye for now in trust that it will not be forever.

An Insight into Our Harp Practices

I’m back again! This time I’m here to tell all of you what exactly happens at our harp practices.

Well, we have 2 types of session; lessons are with our instructor and rehearsals are without our instructor. No matter which, all the members are expected to be on time and have to be fully tuned so that we can start promptly.

For lessons, once our instructor comes, we will start. She will usually go through the last song that she left off from and then start on new songs. We practice until the song is near perfection before we can put the song aside and start on another one. Each lesson is about 2 plus hours long and, of course, there will be breaks during the lesson…like toilet breaks or rest time when we simply cannot look at the score anymore. As each song usually has 3 parts, our instructor will also break us up into our sections and go through each part before we join back as an ensemble and play together.

On the other hand, for rehearsals, we will usually self-practice the parts we’re playing first and then when everyone is ready, the ex-co will start us onto the group practice. We will play together and then pin point out the parts which are weaker and then work on it many times. If necessary, we will also break into our sections and work on the song before we join back and play as an ensemble. However, as our instructor is not present during the rehearsal, the ensemble will take slightly longer breaks BUT during most of the break time, we will be looking through our thick file of scores and picking out new songs that we want to learn.

At the end of the day, after the lesson or rehearsal, the members will pack up; we will cover the harps back with the cloth, stack up the stools and return the stands to where they came from. After all that has been completed and everything is back in its correct positions, we will ensure that 1 air-con is left on as the harps need to be in a cool environment before locking up and going back home!!

Yup…that’s all…

I shall be back next week for more!!

Signing Off,

Miss Harr-Py.

Melvin Lek – 3 Orientations

By OriAna

“I took the one(road) less travelled by,

And that has made all the difference.”

Robert Frost

When the promotional results came out the greeting passed from one J1 to another wasn’t ‘hi, what’s up?’ but ‘did you get promoted?’ Most of the time, thankfully you get a ‘yes’ as an answer. However, sometimes you get a ‘no’ from person who would become a retainee.

How does it feel to be a retainee? When asked Melvin Lek, who was retained last year (and repeated the J1 year with us) said that it ‘hits one hard one way or another’ but in the end he concludes that he became a better person because of the experience.

What struck me when I met Melvin is that he had a lot of ‘bad boy’ qualities. He had the spiky hair, wanted to play and have fun all the time, and did ‘pont’ a lot of activities during orientation (I was in his OG). Therefore I wasn’t surprised when I found out that he was a retainee. These qualities are perhaps the reasons why he got retained in the first place. Yet, he was also quite reflective and thoughtful, showing maturity and experience that reminded me that he was indeed one year older than us. When I told him this he said that being retained would make you like that. Otherwise you would continue the way you were and get retained again.

So is being retained all that bad? Well in retrospect, he did say that maybe it wasn’t. Although it was hard to fit into the new cohort at first (because he kept thinking of us as juniors), he did make friends in the end(many of us I’m sure can testify to that). Also when he looks at the way his friends who were advanced and are now struggling with the As he is glad that he had one more year to study.

He will be one of the few people who can say that they have attended 3 orientations and I am personally glad that his last one is as an OGL. With one more year of loving the school and getting to know it I am sure he will be a good one.