College – Issue 39

INTERNATIONALISM Holiday programme suits international students

So successful was the first ever live-in school holiday programme for international students, that they’ve held it again! The end of Term 2 would usually spell a trip home for most of the school’s overseas students. This time Covid-19 intervened, and the majority of them were forced to stay in Christchurch. “They’d just had 10 weeks in lockdown with their guardians, and then it was holiday time. Because they couldn’t return to their home countries, we decided to keep them in-house for the Term 2 holiday break and offer a live-in school holiday programme which included loads of interesting activities, plus two ski and snow boarding days to Porter Heights, a trip to Hanmer Springs and a global competency programme,” says College’s International Student Manager Deanne Gath, who was the programme supervisor. “It was an active, busy range of activities but there were pockets of free time.” Jacobs House was the holiday home base for the 18 Year 9–13 students who might not have known one another very well at the start, but whose friendships grew during their time together. To make matters more interesting, international boarders from St Margaret’s College and St Andrew’s College joined in at times.

of young people ever and we all learned a lot, whether it was how to cook wontons, how to ski, or undertaking the global competency certification course,” says Deanne. This course, developed by AFS Intercultural Programmes, looks at stereotypes, generalisations, racism, identity, and other allied topics, and its basic tenets align closely with those of Round Square International and College’s own virtues and character strengths.

“ It was better being in Jacobs than in a homestay, we had our own room, and it was more relaxed for us, I think . ” Justin Yin

It’s designed to develop the knowledge, skills and

understanding necessary to create a more just and peaceful world. The students’ enthusiastic and wholehearted participation meant conversations and discussions were rich and open, everybody benefiting from the information gained and the insights achieved. “This is a valuable certification that we can use across the wider school, too,” says Deanne. Year 12 student Justin Yin from Richards House is one student who completely endorses the holiday programme. “I definitely liked it. It was better being in Jacobs House than in a homestay, we had our own room, and it was more relaxed for us, I think. We’re more familiar in that House environment and it worked well.” Justin says the highlight was just relaxing and being on holiday. “I wanted to chill, you get pretty tired after a term; but I did enjoy a

lot of the activities – especially the outdoor stuff. The trip to Hanmer Springs was great, and so was the ice skating.” Justin said he also really enjoyed making dumplings and wontons for dinner. “There are more than 20 ways of making a dumpling and all of us had good fun doing that together.” He says that kind of activity was a good means of everyone getting to know one another better. “There are a lot of similarities in the East Asian cultures – the way schools are set up, and classes and subjects organised, and the stuff the kids talk about are all different from what happens here. “We Chinese are more introverted, whereas here people are more extroverted and give their opinions more freely. I’ve got the hang of things here after all this time here,

“It was the best blended cohort

Christ’s College Canterbury


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