2012 Overseas Service Learning to China, Jian Shui
12 - 16 November 2012, 30 students and 3 teachers from WGS set off to China, Yunnan Province, City of Jian Shui. Upon touching down to Kunming, the team travel approximately 6 hours to reach the town of Jian Shui, where they spent the next three days carrying out their overseas service learning project.
The objectives of this trip are:
- To raise participants’ awareness of the realities and needs of the disadvantaged in a wider community.
- To proide opportunities for students to live out the school values by carrying out community services projects that are meaningful to the local community.
- To broaden participants’ horizons through learning from the larger communities beyond.
Prior to the trip, the students collaborated to prepare for their service learning projects. They prepared the materials for their lessons, learned balloon sculpturing, helped to collect used clothing, toys and stationaries for the under privileged children. They also prepared themselves physically for the work ahead.
During the three days in Jian Shui, the students had many chances interacting with the students in Jian Shui Xi Wang 希望 Primary school. They taught them English, and also contributed physically by helping the school to level the uneven field around the school, in preparation for the construction of a concrete playing ground. The students did not only had a chance to serve the students in China and interact with them, they also learned a lot from the students in China. From the children, they learned to be dilligent and discipline in everything that they do. Below is a short abstract from one student's reflection:
Chin Li Ying (2E1 - 2012) Abstracted from the 2 nd day of reflection.
The experience in school today was indeed a very tiring but yet meaningful one. I got to meet the people there in the rural area and observed how they study; I believe that they were very different from the students in Singapore, they were very responsive and responsible. The moment we stepped into the classroom, I could sensed the respect and eagerness to learn. They didn't miss a single chance to learn more from us. I witnessed the whole class reciting the glossary by themselves even when the teachers were not in the classroom. If I were them, I might be the first to get out of the class. They also have absolute respect for the teachers and even towards their own friends.
For the physical work portion, it was really shocking. I did not expect that we have to do so much under the hot sun. It was a very rare experience for me. I am also very proud of myself for taking such a big step forward in my life. Thinking back, the work that we have done for them was very meaningful.
I also observed the principal serving food for the students during recess, and it was quite weird at first glance. But on second thought, the principal actually lowered down her status just to show love for her students, I learned humility from her. It was an awesome trip.
2011 Overseas Service Learning to Combodia
Every year, Woodgrovers will be given opportunity to organise service learning in at least one overseas country. Through these trips, the students began to appreciate and be thankful for what they have back in Singapore, they will also get to interact and socialise with teenagers and children overseas, and learn more about their culture.