Our recent sister school visit was extremely successful with the Chinese students and teachers commenting on how much they enjoyed visiting our school and staying with our host families.
At the welcoming assembly at the Junior Campus, our students introduced the visitors and presented them each with a double sided Chinese/Australian flag that our students had made. At lunchtime our concert band played and two of the Chinese students got up and did some impromptu Chinese karaoke! They also made boomerangs with our students in class after lunch.
Over the weekend the students thoroughly enjoyed doing some activities with their host families including a visit to Eureka Skydeck, going to AFL games, go-karting and laserforce games, going to church, and one of our teachers, Andrew Cordell, took the three Chinese teachers for a trip down the Great Ocean Road to the 12 Apostles which included fish and chips for lunch.
On Monday and Tuesday they were separated into small groups and attended senior classes with our students, including Accounting, Maths, Chemistry, Geography and English. They loved the staff vs students volleyball game on Monday and we had a traditional Aussie sausage sizzle for lunch on Tuesday followed by the farewell assembly.
At the assembly the students and teachers were presented with gifts and certificates, as well as a commemoration plaque to take back to their school in China. One of the Chinese teachers did a thank you speech, and said they noticed how different Australia is to China – namely the “blue skies and clean air”!! At the end of the assembly all the Chinese students got up and did some amazing performances – Tai Chi, an Eminem rap, a flute performance and a traditional Chinese dance, to the claps and cheers of the senior students and teachers.
The Chinese students bonded with our students in a very short time, and would like to stay in touch with their host families. Many said that they didn’t want to leave! We will be applying to the Department of Education to send another group of Year 9 students to China next year for the Victorian Young Leaders to China program, and will most likely include a visit to our sister school as well.