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Secondary 4 Graduation Night - “Live Your Dream”           

2014 marks a memorable year for the girls as they went through many experiences throughout the year. It was an emotional ride for them, as they stepped down from their beloved CCAs, sat for the crucial O levels, and finally saying goodbye to the school and fellow friends during the Graduation Assembly. The Graduation Night served as a touching grand finale to the girls’ four years spent in Crescent Girls’ School.

On 17th November 2014, the Secondary Four students gathered at Orchard Hotel, for their Graduation Night. Dressed in glitzy gowns and dresses- and suits and ties, - the girls and the school staff looked dazzling, buzzing excitedly before the start of the event. The event started off with a heart-warming farewell speech from our principal Mrs Tan Chen Kee and [GOH] followed by the fancy entrance of the long awaited scrumptious dinner.

During the seven-course dinner, the girls had a great time catching up with their friends after the stressful period of O Level examinations, sharing stories with much joy and laughter. At the same time, some games were played and attractive lucky draw prizes were also won. The girls took countless photographs with their CCA buddies, teachers, classmates, and best friends as a keepsake to remind them of their time in Crescent.

The highlight of the night’s event was the Miss Crescentian Pageant. Eight girls representing their classes strutted down the aisle towards the stage with confidence. They had to answer a question each pertaining to their experience in school. The girls took time to reminisce some of their personal memories and thought hard to give the best answer. Groomed to be lady leaders of the future, these girls took the stage by storm and each of them gave very unique and heartfelt answers. At last, based on her confidence, style and overall look, the Miss Crescentian was crowned. Apart from that, another crown went to Mrs Rupa for being the best dressed teacher for the night!

Sadly, after a delightful evening, the event had to come to an end. Everyone stood up to sing the school. With heavy hearts, the girls sang the school song with so much pride for it was their very last time. Remembering the way they sang it during the first day of school, they have come a very long way in Crescent and their love developed for this school will forever be etched in their hearts. The girls also performed their final school mass dance together as a cohort, linking arms with one another, displaying the very strong friendships and bonds created during these four years.

 As Crescentians, we are reluctant to admit that we have come to the end of our Crescent journey. It is time now to live our dreams ahead of us. However, wherever we go, never will we forget our own stories in Crescent, since the first time we stepped into this school. As the popular lyrics of our school song go, “The day when we must part, may Crescent remain in our hearts.” Oh, we know Crescent will always remain in our hearts.     

Reported by Suwindrie bte Sutiyono (4C3)         

Workshop with Norwegian Writer Ms Tone Almjhell

Inspiration can come and go so easily, just like a gust of wind. When you are lucky, you get to feel the strong winds of a hurricane and thunderstorm. When you are not, you get to feel the short breeze that blows just above the grass for that split second. Ms Tone’s writing workshop allowed me to be totally trapped in a hurricane where everything flows in and out through me and into me. It was a thrilling experience as I managed to writing out interesting snippets.

Inspiration visits from time to time,
At times it stays,
At times it leaves.
Sometimes, it seems as though it will never return.
At times it stays,
The house is decorated with all emotions.
When it seems as though it will never return,
It quietly sneaks in to visit.

This experience definitely allowed me to grow as a writer, increased my methods of writing and definitely allowed inspiration to flow.

Reported by Vanesa Goh (3G1)
Although writing is my passion, I always find it very challenging and stressful. It is not an easy task for me to immediately be inspired and come up with a new poem or prose as and when I like. Sometimes it is tough to also pen down the many exciting new plots and ideas you have in your head at that point in time. I will feel thrilled at the sudden surge of inspiration but at the same time, fear that it will vanish after a few seconds. However, most of my worries and troubles were eased after attending Ms Tone’s writing workshop. Her experience and writing techniques certainly helped me polish my style of writing, organized my thoughts and help me garner more inspiration. The session really proved to me that through appropriate use of techniques and lots of practice, writing is actually not a difficult thing. Especially for the fantasy genre, a writing style I enjoy and adopt a lot. The session is really helpful and I am glad to have a chance to attend it to hone my literary skills.

Reported by Debbie Ang (3S1)

Dedication Ceremony 2015

The inaugural Dedication Ceremony held on the 13th of January 2015 marked the beginning of a new year for Crescent. The event kicked off with the CGS staff making their grand entrance into the school auditorium, followed by the singing of the school song. The Head of the family, our principal, Mrs Tan Chen Kee then set the tone for our school year, once again reminding the whole Crescent Family about giving our all for the year ahead and to make everything we do worthwhile. The school staff then recited the Staff pledge, promising to bring out the best in Crescentians and guide them to become good and useful citizens of the nation.

We welcomed our new Secondary Ones into the Crescentian family, with the Crescent tradition of having our Secondary 4 big sisters pin the school badges onto their younger sisters’ uniforms, marking the official start to their Secondary school journey. The Dedication Ceremony proceeded with the recitation of the Pupils’ Creed by all the students, led by the President of the Student Council, Yau Xin Yue. The love and dedication towards our school was manifested in the resounding voices of each student, as each of us likewise pledged to bring honour to our school.  
As we begin yet another chapter of our Crescent journey, we will strive to give the best that we have. Onward with zeal and zest, forward we of CGS! 

The Release of O-level Results

The mid-day sun was shining bright enough to blind one’s eyes. It was not any typical Monday, it was the O-Level Results day. Wearing their school uniform neatly with their name tags and badges pinned on, crowds of Secondary Four Crescentions strolled into the school auditorium with their parents, full of energy and bubbling with excitement. Stern and anxious looking parents took their rightful places on their chairs at the back of the hall. The students displayed a wide range of emotions - some were engrossed in their animated chats with their friends, probably catching up on their lost time during holidays; some were burning with suspense, while others were seen with their parents who were whispering words of encouragement into their ears. Soon, the hall was buzzing with students, all set to receive their long-awaited O-Level results. 

At 2pm, the principal, followed by the secondary four form and co-form teachers with the students’ results slip, walked briskly into the hall. Silence descended and tension hung thick in the air. Mrs Tan addressed the students. Time seemed to stand still. Several students on the floor were visibly restless, unable to contain their bursting emotions. Nevertheless, in a few moments, the names of the students who did exceptionally well in the exams were flashed on the screen amid loud applause and screeching cheers. Some parents stood up, huge smiles on their faces, and congratulated their children. Tears of joy that their hard work had paid off were shed; for some, faces of disappointment could be spotted. A while later, the students went up to collect their results slips. Most were content with their results while some felt that they could have done better. Tears were shed, lessons were learnt, but one thing was certain : that day marked a very significant day of their lives, an important milestone in their lives. It marked a wonderful beginning of a new chapter, where they were ready to conquer the new challenges that awaited them with zeal and zest! 

Reported by Haritha Divakaran  (4G3)

Interview Session With Our Sec 4s…..

1. How are you feeling right now?
Wenwen: I’m quite excited because it is much better than what I had expected.  I’ve never gotten such high marks before, especially in my English.
Jean: Very happy, that we got the results we wanted, that were beyond our expectations. And we're happy that our hard work paid off.
Seraphina: Mixed feelings. I think most of us are feeling happy to a certain extent, and also very grateful to our teachers and all the hard work they have put in to help us along the way. Before the release of our results, we were feeling extremely nervous, but now I think it’s more of a feeling of relief.
Soundarya: Quite happy, because personally, I did way better than I had expected, so I’m quite happy and I’m very proud of myself. When I told my parents my results, I could tell they were also quite proud of me. So I’m very happy with the results that I got

2. What is the recipe for your success that you could share with your juniors?
Tan Ning: Well, you must always make sure that you have enough rest because if you don’t have enough rest, you won’t have enough energy to do any homework or to study. More importantly, you have to study. It’s mostly just practising over and over again. You also have to focus on other subjects which you aren’t very sure about and remember to manage your resources carefully.
Natasha: I think that the most important thing is to be consistent from the start, for example, putting in effort from the start and also paying attention to the teachers because they can really help you. Also, before the teachers start teaching you a new topic, you can read up on that particular topic beforehand, so that you can have a general idea of what the teacher would be teaching during class.
Isabelle: For me, the recipe to success is to most importantly not give up on yourself, because sometimes, even when you do really badly for a test or your mock exam or even for your Mid Years and Prelims, and you feel very discouraged and especially towards the end, as you are approaching your O level papers and you start thinking to yourself, “What’s the point, there’s not enough time, there’s really no time, there’s no point in me working hard now.”  However, you shouldn’t give up on yourself and instead you should just keep pushing yourself on and not think so much about it. Just keep doing and keep doing and keep doing, because you’ll be surprised by how far a little bit of practice can carry you. 

3. Where did you draw your source of inspiration from?
Wu Yan: In order to have a wider range of options for post-secondary education, I was motivated to do well as I did not want to regret not being able to get into the course I wanted.
Denise: Scoring well allows you to attend whichever school you want. My uncle helped me open my eyes to more options that I could have. He attended Oxford and hence, my dream to pursue higher studies overseas was my source of motivation. In order to realise my dream, I was determined to do as well. 
Alison: My motivation was the thought that our O' levels was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that would determine how I would move forward in life. I did not want to mess it up and regret it later.
Jacqueline: I felt motivated by the disappointment I felt back when I had done my PSLE. I did not study at all or put any effort, hence, when I had received my results, I felt terrible. I knew I could have done better and as such, I was disappointed that I did not do as well as I had hoped. 
Natasha: I think my motivation will definitely be my class mates and the teachers. Basically people around me had motivated me a lot. The teachers are all putting in so much effort for me and I’d feel bad if I don’t put in enough effort and slack around, so I feel like I’d be, so called, ‘repaying’ them by also putting in effort. Also, when I see all my classmates working hard, l would naturally just like feel like working hard with them as well, so… I wouldn’t call it an inspiration, but it’s more of a motivation to work harder.
Gao Ming: I think the motivation for me is the thought of wanting to get better results and a better future. This is similar to, like, when I’m playing chess online. I want to get a higher score. So, I need to practice and practice. Only then I can improve my score and technique.
Zhou Hui: My source of motivation is my parents because they always support me and encourage me, so I feel like I cannot let them down so I will try harder and study harder to make them proud.
Hui Xuan: My friends kept me motivated. Basically, in Secondary 4, all of us study and suffer together so we become very closely bonded. It’s motivating to have a group of friends who are always with you and going through the same thing as you.

4. What were some of your study methods employed?
Farhana:  I would say that it’s more of consistency throughout the year. You have to constantly study and read up on the topics, so at the end of the day, you’ll be prepared for the exams. For me, I didn’t really have anything that’s necessarily special. It’s more of trial-and-error and see what works for you. For example, for the Humanities, I discovered that if I did mind maps, it really helped me remember the facts. For the Sciences, it’s more of practicing questions after reading up on the chapter so my understanding of the concept is strengthened. 
Seraphina: I think for the Humanities, it is important to draw links, especially between the content and the question itself. So when you are attempting questions, you must pay special attention to that. I don’t really have a certain method of studying, but I think being able to memorise information is important, so try to find a way that works best for you.
Yan Xi:  I also think instead of blindly trying to solve the questions over and over again in vain, if you need help you should not hesitate to ask around. You can approach your teachers to clarify your doubts as, at the end of the day, they are the best source of help.
Alison: Sleeping early. Lack of sleep really affects my attention in class negatively. I feel that there is no point in staying up late to study when the next day I don't even understand what is happening in class at all.
Denise: Pay attention in class. I suggest attending the night study as well as it really is beneficial as it allows you to have two full hours of private study time. Make notes and attend consultation sessions with your teachers as well.
WuYan: Consultation sessions with teachers really help but be sure to do work and come prepared for the consultations. 

5. What were some of the main obstacles and challenges that you faced and how did you overcome them?
Isabelle: My main challenge was that I had the tendency to procrastinate a lot. To add on to that, when I started doing work, I tend to do one page, then rest for a few hours, then start doing another page. But when you looked at the people around you, your classmates and everyone else and you saw how hard they were working, then you looked at yourself and you think, if other people are going through the same things as me, maybe even more, and they are putting in so much effort, then why am I not doing the same? Because of that, you really have that motivation to spur you on and start doing things, and the moment you start doing things you feel good, you feel like you’re making a difference in your life. And then, from then on you are more motivated to work hard. And when you realise that your grades for your various subjects are improving, you’ll feel even better and more self-assured and you will feel so motivated to do more. 
Gao Ming: I have a problem with time management. Often, I have to stay up late in order to finish my homework and I would be really tired the next day. Sometimes, I would fall asleep in class and then I’d need to catch up with what I had missed while I was dozing off. Usually, I’d follow my method. I would write down a list of things I needed to do, then I’d follow the list and finish the tasks I assigned to myself as quickly as I can. That helped a lot.
Nicole: I think it was at the part when I was still training for my CCA, as my workload had already increased. Then I had to cope with CCA training and competitions. And I also had to study. I found it quite stressful as I wanted to do well for my exams as well as excel in our last competitions and so it was quite challenging to juggle both CCA and studies at the same time. As my CCA was held at MacRitchie Reservoir, so I could do my studying on the bus and as such, try and make use of all the time I had. Although I was very tired by the time I reached home, I still had to study. Fortunately my friends were there to help me.

6. What are some of your plans after this?
Hui Xin: Definitely going to JC. Probably NJC, because it’s very near my house.
Wei Lin: I still haven’t decided, but I’m thinking of VJC.
Yan Xi: I’m also thinking of VJC, but I’m not very sure. My favourite senior from Crescent is in that school, and it would be great to be in the same school as her.
Wu Yan: I plan to go to a polytechnic as I feel that results based on one month of study does not suit me. I prefer doing assignments compared to studying for exams. I am looking forward to joining the Aviation Management Course in a polytechnic which is the management of the airline industry.
Denise: I would like to join a Junior College as I would like to pursue Chemistry in the future. University is my ultimate goal, but for now I would just like to further my studies in Chemistry.
Alison: Attending National Junior College (NJC) or Victoria Junior College (VJC) which are my top two choices. I do not really know what I want to do yet but so far JC is where I want to pursue my studies.
Jacqueline: I am planning to join a Junior College however I am still trying to decide between pursuing Biology or Physics.
Jean: I’m still at the cross-roads between JC and Poly. I'm not sure which one I want to do, because JC seems like a viable option but at the same time, I'm leaning towards Poly because of the interesting courses available, so I'm keeping my options open and I'm still considering. At the same time, I want to keep up with my hobbies. I want to pick up the Spanish language.

7. What advice would you give to your juniors who will be preparing for their O levels this year? 
Tershenne: Listen in class and do your work consistently. Some people might think that doing your work is not important, but consistently doing your work and listening in class can really help a lot especially when you’re trying to revise your work. 
Hui Xuan: To my juniors, I want to tell you guys that it’s not all gloom and doom. I know a lot of you will feel very depressed and I was, honestly, a horrible person to be around at the beginning of the year because I was just so disappointed over my Sec 3 results. But it gets better through the months. Remember to have fun because, like I said before, I didn’t give up my hobbies. You have to have fun because it really makes your day and makes it easier for you to do your work after you have relaxed.
Wenwen: I think you should never give up. I know it’s cliché, but it’s really true. Your potential will amaze you. You might think that you want to give up some subjects and might never get what you want for that subject. When you think about this, just keep working because it’s never too late.
Yiran: Pay attention during lessons. Try your best in everything you do.
Nicole: If you sleep very late to do homework, then you can't wake up the next day, and you can't be alert during lessons. What happens is that you won't know how to do the homework, then you'll also be lost during the next lesson because you don't know what the teacher said during the previous lesson. And do your homework when your teacher assigns work for you.

Student Interviewers:
Jovitta Pereira (4C1)
Karen Irawan (4C1)
Clare Cho (4C1)
Keerti Karunakaran (4C1)
Tamara Kristensen (4C1)
Shu Lin Tranter (4C1)
Ashley Tan (4C3)
Alexandra Alfonso (4C3)
Sanjana Kamdar (4C3)
Nur Natasha Ning (4C3)
Theresa Saguda (4C3)

From Homeschooling to CGS

On the 12th of January, the 2014 batch of Secondary 4 students returned to Crescent for the release of their O-level results. One of these students, Teo Sze-Anne (4C1, 2014), was interviewed after collecting her results. She scored seven points, which is a very respectable score. As a student who was homeschooled for a large part of her life, Sze-Anne has had a
very different experience growing up from her peers in Crescent. Adjustment to Crescent life in Secondary 2 was challenging initially as she shared about some issues she faced in school, such as getting used to the structure of lessons and the nature of various subjects. At the same time, she also tried to address some misconceptions her classmates might have about homeschooling by shedding light on what homeschooling is about - a strong emphasis on discovery learning and self-directed learning. These are important factors that have helped shape
the way she learns.

Thanks to the support from her caring and helpful classmates as well as the encouragement from the Principal, Mrs Tan, she managed to settle in within a year. From her experience at Crescent, Sze-Anne stressed the importance of doing our part as students by putting in effort and managing time well. Improving note writing skills is equally important so as to make revision more productive. All these, she shared, are key to her achievements in her studies and CCA, the CrezChorale. Undeniably, her insightful advice is a strong reminder to all students and she is indeed a good role model for us.

Reported by Ong Hui Pin Jermayne (4G2) & Koh Raelene (4G2)

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