HKAGE-GROWHOUSE Collaborated Programme Graduation Ceremony

Awardees of the 2014/15 Hong Kong Budding Poets (English) Award celebrated for completion of intensive summer course in FICTION at GROWHOUSE

We had a great time with all our students, parents and guests who came to the Graduation Ceremony. 

Please see here for memories of the day.

September 29, 2015, Hong Kong – Over the summer, the Hong Kong Academy of Gifted Education (HKAGE) collaborated with GROWHOUSE Education Centre in providing an intensive summer programme in English literacy and critical thinking for their student members who are the awardees of the Hong Kong Budding Poets (English) Award. The purpose of the collaboration was to reward selected awardees (aged 10-16) for their outstanding poetry-writing with a bespoke nine-day programme on literary analysis and creative writing, such that their critical and artistic abilities could be honed and developed in a small classroom setting. Students were provided with personalised and detailed written assessment reports on their English skills and learning dispositions throughout the programme, and came away having produced various pieces of individual creative and analytical writing.

Critical thinking is fast becoming a more essential skill than ever in education and the working world. It lays the foundation for skills like independent inquiry and problem solving as expected of HKDSE, GCSE, A-Level, and IB students. As it has become the norm to be inundated with information daily, it is crucial that young learners develop the independence and confidence to make sense of different perspectives, such that they do not merely become passive receptors of information. Indeed, critical thinking forms the basis of lifelong learning, as it equips individuals with core values of judgment and empathy which extend from school to the workplace. This means using as many opportunities as possible to practice thinking independently and reading closely, which in turn ignites curiosity about the wider world.

The intensive summer programme took place in July and August, and the graduation ceremony on Tuesday, September 15 at GROWHOUSE Education Centre. Besides from the participants of the programme and their families, special guests included members of the HKAGE staff, including Associate Director (Academic Programme Development Division) Mr. Albert Hong and Student Services Manager Ms. Brenda Liu, Student Programme Development Officer Ms. Queenie Choi. Students had the opportunity to show parents around the Centre and introduce their work – in the form of mind maps, storyboards, annotated texts and independent creative writing – as displayed in the classroom.

The ceremony began with GROWHOUSE Senior Director Ms Jannie Tam delivering a speech on giftedness and how the Education Centre’s core curriculum, as designed by London Gifted and Talented (LG&T), caters to students’ self-discovery and holistic development. This was followed by Mr Albert Hong’s address of the graduates, which emphasised commitment as the key driving force behind academic success. Charlotte Hankin, Lead Teacher of GROWHOUSE, then gave a presentation on the importance of literacy to one’s personal development and engagement with the world, as well as an overview of the skills students learnt on the programme. Finally, GROWHOUSE Teacher & Programme Advisor Holly Mak explained the structure and specifics of the programme before graduates were personally congratulated and awarded their Certificates of Attainment.

Students were given the chance to share their views on how the summer programme had impacted their life and learning. One student remarked that she “enjoyed the fact that everyone had the chance to present their own ideas”, whilst several noticed that their “analytical skills had improved”, and their “understanding of texts deepened”. Above all, students were excited and stimulated by in-depth discussions and sharing, as well as the writing techniques they had learned. This enabled them to apply new knowledge into their own individual creative writing by the end of the course. Drawing from Stephen Fry, Lead Teacher Charlotte Hankin noted at the end of the ceremony, “We may be what we eat, but we most certainly ARE what we say and write. It places us in the world like no other quality we possess” – by the end of the programme students had built up their academic and social confidence, and came away with a reinvigorated passion for literacy.

香港資優教育學苑與GROWHOUSE教育中心合辦課程畢業典禮

慶祝2014/15香港傑出學生詩人(英文) 獎得獎者完成九天的GROWHOUSE讀寫能力增潤課程 (小說)

(2015年9月29日)香港 –今年夏天GROWHOUSE與香港資優教育學苑(資優教育)協作,為2014/15香港傑出學生詩人(英文)獎得獎的資優學苑學員提供了為期九天的英語讀寫能力增潤課程,加強培養他們的英語讀寫能力及批判性思考能力。

此次合作目的是獎勵在香港傑出學生詩人(英文) 獎中得獎的資優學苑學員(10-16歲),藉此讓他們可以獲得一個為期九天的讀寫能力增潤課程,讓他們於一個小班教學的環境中,學習有關文學分析及創意寫作,加強自身對文學作品的批判思維及審美能力。在整個課程期間,學生會按時收到有關自己英語能力和個人學習特質的詳細書面評估報告,而課程完結時他們亦可以完成數篇富原創性及邏輯性的個人文章。

除了過往的學術及工作範疇以外,批判性思維正迅速成為一項必備的才能。它為其他技能如獨立質詢及解決問題等能力奠定了基礎,不論是香港中學文憑、GCSE、A-LEVEL和IB學生們均被要求具備此能力。當人們每天都被淹沒於泛濫的資訊內,學生們更須具有獨立性及自信心(自我肯定/價值),以衡量多方面的觀點,使他們不只被動地接收資訊。更重要的是,批判性思維是推動個人終身學習的源由,學生們由學校踏入社會工作,他們應已具備兩項最重要的核心價值 — 獨立判斷和同理心,令他們可以向更多的機會去實踐獨立思考和深層解讀各資訊,從中對廣闊的世界點燃求知慾。

此密集式的增潤課程於七月和八月期間推行,其畢業典禮於九月十五日假GROWHOUSE教育中心舉行。當日除了完成課程的學生及其家屬,亦邀請了香港資優教育學苑總監(學術課程發展)康仲賢先生、學生服務經理廖淑儀女士及學生課程發展主任主任蔡寶漫女士為嘉賓。學生的作品於中心內課室展示出來讓家長觀賞,如心智思維圖法、分鏡腳本、註釋文本和獨立的原創文章。

當日首先由GROWHOUSE高級總監譚天心女士為畢業典禮致歡迎詞,當中她詮釋了資優的概念,以及解釋由英國London Gifted & Talented所編寫的GROWHOUSE課程是如何顧及學生自我發現和全面發展的需要。接著是由康仲賢先生致詞,他強調「承諾」是成就學術成功的重要驅動力。而GROWHOUSE教學與課程發展部經理Charlotte Hankin亦指出知識對個人發展及置身於世界的重要性,及概述學生於此課程中所學習的技巧。最後由該中心課程顧問麥顥妍老師解釋課程結構和細節,並祝賀各畢業生及授予証書。  此外學生們會於畢業典禮上也分享對此課程如何影響了他們的生活和學習。其中一名學生指出她「喜歡的是每個人都有機會表達其個人想法」,而其中學生認為他們的分析技巧有改善,對文章有更深入的理解。總括而言,他們對課堂上深入的討論和交流,以及所學到的寫作技巧都興奮不已,課程結束後他們將所學到的新知識應用及轉化為自己的個人創作。 Charlotte Hankin最後引用英國著名演員、作家及電視主持人 Stephen John Fry 的一段話作為總結,希望經過此課程學生建立了自己對學術和社會的信心,為文學領域注入新的活力激情。

“We may be what we eat, but we most certainly ARE what we say and write. It places us in the world like no other quality we possess” — Stephen John Fry