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IB Academy News - 2nd September 2016

02 September 2016

Find out what's been happening in the IB Academy

  • Work experience - the hospital
  • Work experience - the hotel kitchens
  • Immersion into Italian Culture

What a welcome sight it was to see this year’s IB Academy made complete by the return of our new Year 13 and Year 12 students on the first Monday back.  On the back of last year’s outstanding IB results, the Year 13 students have returned as fired up to achieve beyond their perceived potential as the teachers are to help them get there.  They have launched straight into Higher Education meetings to discuss life beyond NAIS and preparation for the various admissions processes.  Personal Statements, SAT tests, and College Essays at the forefront of their mind, they are already coping admirably with the juggling act that is their final year and we hope that determination, organization and sheer hard work will get them to their dream universities.  Alongside these applications, the Extended Essays loom large and, with their first draft already submitted, the students are liaising maturely with their mentors to ensure that they have completed the necessary research to meet the needs of their research questions.

Last Friday saw the final wave of GCSE results come in and we are truly proud of the achievements of our Year 12 students and the positive way they have taken to their IB studies already.  The start of the IB course always leaves room for team building and bonding with new students and the first Saturday back was no different.  Led by an exciting new addition to the IB team, the Year 12 students took to the climbing walls of Shanghai with Ms. Kilpatrick in what was the first of their CAS experiences.  This was a chance for students to step out of their comfort zones and collaborate with their peers in scaling the heights of the climbing faces at Shanghai Stadium Climbing Centre.  This was followed by an introduction to CAS and students were walked through the first of their CAS preparation write ups and the necessary reflections that form an essential part of the core programme.  We are also grateful to Mr Dolan and Mr Crozier for accompanying the students on this challenge.

The work room of the IB Academy is already a very productive place to be with students collaborating on TOK discussions and learning to master Managebac.  The Year 13 students have set an impressive example and have warmly welcomed the new Year 12s to the fold. 

We thought it would be interesting at this stage to look at just a few of the exciting opportunities taken up by our Year 13 students over the summer holidays.  Here are a few examples of the many courses and experiences that were embarked upon to broaden their horizons and understand life beyond school.


I-Zac Lee

Over the summer I spent some time in Khoo Teck Puat Hospital (KTPH) in Singapore, where I was attached to several different doctors, all part of the general surgery team led by a consultant. To get that work attachment I had to send out many emails to about 10 different hospitals across Singapore, an email was even sent to the minister of health in order to open up  the opportunity to me. However, obtaining the opportunity was easier than a day of work. A work day started at 7.30am and did not finish until 6pm, which meant that I had to wake up by 5.45 in order to be there on time. In the work attachment I was lucky enough to become friends with a doctor who allowed me into the surgical theatre to observe an amputation. I learnt that being a doctor requires passion and determination as the working hours are long. The experience has allowed me to further understand the journey that I am about to embark upon.


Li Ling Francesca Chiam

This summer I embarked on a cultural immersion program in Italy, where I spent two weeks staying in a beautiful town in the heart of Tuscany, Siena. I had an amazing homestay family to call my own and a roommate from the same program for those two weeks. We had Italian language lessons from Mondays to Fridays, 9am-1pm, alongside other excursions around Italy to have a better understanding of the Italian culture. The best thing about this program is being able to put into practice the Italian that i've learnt in a real-life setting. It was a fulfilling experience that allowed me not only to learn basic language skills in Italian but also have a taste of what it would be like to study abroad, thus preparing me for university life. The company that I undertook the program with was SPI Study Abroad, and they have a quite a few other similar cultural programs in Spain, France, Costa Rica and China. 


Grace Todd

The work experience that I took over the summer was working in the kitchen of Char at Hotel Indigo, on the Bund. For the first 2 weeks I didn’t have any days off so I was working every day from 2pm to around 10-11pm. I learnt a lot at my time in the kitchen such as; preparing ingredients, appetizers and simple dishes beforehand to help with a smooth service as well as knowing which table to serve without messing up the order, which would disorganize the order of the tables to serve. This has helped me by being more vigilant and organized, and this will help me a lot for my last year at school, and further in the future.  This experience has also helped me to realize that I just enjoy cooking as a hobby and no longer want to pursue it as a career. I’m really glad that I realized this when I did otherwise I would still be on that path rather than realizing it later on in life.  I thoroughly enjoyed the experience and am grateful for the opportunity.  


Andrew Chien

I worked in a chemical firm in Taiwan during the summer where I was placed in the IT department to help out on everyday tasks. Every week, I would make a trip to the company mainframes to maintain them. Throughout the month I worked 8 hours a day for almost a month. I took my internship as an opportunity in which to test out my skills that I have developed in classes or previous work and see how they fit in the real world. I was able to get an idea of my greatest strengths and areas for improvement. Working in an office environment, I was able to have the chance to observe how others operate and take on those attributes that I feel work best, whether it’s communication, behaviour, or office etiquette. Through my internship, it gave me an idea of what I might want to pursue in the future. 


Dates for the diary

Upcoming dates for your diary:

Sunday 11th September – Family Picnic 12-4pm

Tuesday 13th September – Secondary Meet and Greet Evening – 5-8pm

26th – 30th September – International Week

Tuesday 11th October – Y13 Academic Review Evening 5-8pm

Thursday 13th October – Y12 Academic Review Evening 5-8pm


We look forward to meeting as many parents as possible at the Meet and Greet session on Tuesday 13th September and hope this is a chance to get a thorough understanding of the year to come as well as meet the IB team in its new form with committed and dedicated form tutors who are keen to guide their tutees through the challenges.