Dear parents and students,
It has been two months since the start of the school year, and I see that the students have adapted well to full-time schooling, and all aspects of the school are running smoothly. This brings me great joy. Seeing the students go to school happily and return home with joy fills me with a sense of peace, knowing that I can continue planning fun and meaningful learning activities for them. This year, we have had many more activities compared to previous years due to the new schedule arrangements implemented by the Education Bureau. Now, we complete all classroom teaching content in the mornings, and in the afternoons, we have various subject-based activities or physical education activities, allowing students to experience the joy of language and knowledge learning firsthand, following the principle of "learning through experience." At the same time, we have also arranged a variety of physical education activities to develop students' potential in different areas.
Monday afternoons are dedicated to moral and civic education, where our goal is to teach students proper values and attitudes while increasing their awareness of national identity. In early October, we held a "Class Slogan Competition" where students collectively designed slogans and presented them as a whole class. This helped foster a sense of belonging among students towards their own class and school. I sincerely thank the class teachers for their dedicated design and training of the students. What pleased me the most was that the school provided each student with an opportunity to perform on stage.
Tuesday afternoons are dedicated to STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics). We have designed a curriculum related to technology for students, hoping that they can understand some basic scientific principles and enhance their potential in this field. The Education Bureau is also actively promoting students' interest and abilities in technology, paving the way for their possible future in scientific research. Next year, we will have the opportunity to introduce a formal science curriculum, so the current school-based STEAM curriculum is preparing students for that.
Thursday afternoons are dedicated to language and culture, with Chinese and English teachers taking charge. In the upper grades, the Chinese language subject arranged a visit to the Ping Shan Heritage Trail, where students collected information for their compositions. In addition, the lower grades taught customs related to the Double Ninth Festival and completed kite-making activities in class. Before dismissal, they learned how to fly kites on the playground, which excited both parents and students.
Friday afternoons are dedicated to physical education and arts. Students participate in various activities, including sports, music, recitation of English poetry, and environmental protection. The most special aspect is the Japanese language class, where the teacher prepared Japanese language materials for the students. The students study diligently because they hope to have the opportunity to practice the Japanese they have learned in Japan. Therefore, the school is seriously considering arranging a parent-child exchange trip to Japan. LTY students look forward to going to school every day, and some even express that they don't want the holidays.
During the recent summer vacation, I issued a special challenge to the students, and they were all eager to accept and complete the task. The challenge was to create a neat, tidy, and beautiful copybook, and as a reward, I promised them an ice cream voucher. We enjoyed ice cream together at school. During the ice cream gathering, the students used their ice cream vouchers to express their preferred flavors to the foreign teachers in English. While enjoying their ice cream in the auditorium, they also watched English videos about the process of making ice cream. This way, they not only learned to apply English but also had a pleasant learning experience.
Teachers have also been exploring various methods for the students' learning. In addition to the arrangements mentioned above, the school organized homework tutoring classes in mid-October, allowing students to complete their assignments under the guidance of teachers before going home. This arrangement provides more peace of mind for parents and reduces friction within families. Although this increases the workload for teachers, they are willing to make the effort because they want to do everything that is beneficial for the students. We are grateful to our teachers!
Additionally, on Wednesday October 18th morning, there was a Tuen Mun District Principals' Meeting. Every year at this time, we meet with principals from other schools in the district to learn from each other. In the afternoon, principals from secondary schools, primary schools, and kindergartens in Tuen Mun District gathered for a celebration for the new school year. It has been the sixth year of service in Tuen Mun District, and we have gotten to know many principals from different schools, as well as newly appointed principals each year. In addition, representatives from the Liaison Office, Education Bureau, Police Department, and other government departments also attended, demonstrating the government's support for the education sector. We get to know and understand each other, hoping for more exchanges and support in the future. This year, many principals came to talk to me, and one female principal approached me. Instead of calling me Principal Chan, she called me "senior." She mentioned that we attended the same secondary school, where I was responsible for coaching the lower grades in inter-class volleyball competitions, and she was one of the students I taught. She praised my spiking skills, which surprised and delighted me. This conversation reminded me of her. Back then, she tied her hair in a ponytail and was very enthusiastic about volleyball. I learned from other teachers that she excelled academically and served as a discipline prefect. Later, she successfully entered a well-known local university. After graduation, she became a secondary school teacher and gradually rose to the positions of head of department and vice principal, eventually becoming the principal of a well-known secondary school. She is truly an outstanding "junior"! As a senior, I must work even harder!
In recent years at LTY, I have often come up with different methods to enhance students' interest in learning English. Last year, we organized the Tuen Mun District Joint-School English Event called STEP, which received high praise from colleagues, students, and even the Education Bureau. I believe LTY has gained a significant advantage in the development of the English subject. With the resumption of normalcy this year, we can not only organize cross-border English learning tours, but we also visited Singapore before, and this year our destination is Australia. This year, our upper primary and lower secondary students also formed teams to participate in an English choral speaking competition. We are now in the intense practice stage, and we have achieved second and third places in the past. We hope to achieve even greater success this year.
This year, the English textbooks for LTY students have been changed to a new publisher, so we need to create new school-based materials. We have also added an English reading workshop to the Language Enhancement Program on Thursday afternoons. I understand that the workload for English teachers has increased significantly. As a principal, I used to be an English teacher and a subject coordinator. I have also been seconded to the Education Bureau's Curriculum Development Institute (Primary English Section). Based on my experiences and interests, I have created school-based English assignments, reading materials, task-based assessments, and reading comprehension exercises suitable for our students' proficiency level. These materials are not only original but also valuable in terms of education and include STEAM elements. They are visually appealing and make students more interested in learning. Not only English teachers, but also several other principals from friendly schools and Education Bureau officials have praised my "works." I will continue to work hard to add more colour to English learning for LTY students.
Overall, October has been a busy and exciting month at LTY School. We have organized various activities and events to promote English learning and provide opportunities for students to showcase their talents. The support and participation of parents, teachers, and students have been crucial in making these activities successful. We look forward to more engaging and impactful English learning experiences in the future.
Chan Chun Wah, Fred