Jonathan spent seven years at ICHK and attained a maximum IB score of 45 points. He is now studying at St Andrew’s University.
What did you most enjoy about your time at ICHK?
In my seven years at ICHK, I honestly enjoyed every part of it at some point – classes were engaging, if not because of the subject, then the teacher; volleyball games and table-tennis matches during break were especially fun; and studying (or rather, “studying”) with friends during free periods probably led to some of our most memorable moments. I think that after-school activities were perhaps the most enjoyable, as they introduced me to new hobbies and sports that I still currently enjoy, while also allowing me to get to know many of the students and teachers around the school.
How do you feel that teachers at ICHK prepared you for life after school?
I feel that teachers at ICHK place great importance on a student’s personal development before looking at their academic grades. All the teachers I’ve known at ICHK have had extremely varied experiences, and they’ve found ways of connecting with many different students to encourage them to learn, experiment and take risks. Apart from academic skills, teachers openly share some of their life stories with students as well, often subtly giving students life advice. Although saying this is a bit corny, I really do believe they are great role models for students.
How do you think that ICHK differs from other schools?
ICHK, in my opinion, holds many qualities that make it stand out to other international schools. Even the fact that it’s located in Sha Tau Kok means that the surrounding environment is very unique, with weekly exercise runs to temples, occasional science field trips to a nearby lake, not to mention the scavenger hunts during PE class! The new ‘Deep Learning’ experiences for the lower years is also something that I believe few other schools have done to the same extent, and while I haven’t had the opportunity to experience it myself, the sight of younger students rappelling off the roof of a three-story building makes me wish I was there. The school constantly pushes you to broaden your horizons and go past your limits, and you end up doing something you once thought you would’ve been crazy to try.
What were the key skills that you learnt at ICHK?
Honestly, there are too many to list – seven years is quite a lot of time to grow. The IB learner profile, though, is something that the school emphasises heavily upon – and whether I’ve liked it or not, I’ve found myself much more open to taking risks, communicating in a coherent manner, considering ideas and arguments with an open mind, and acting upon my self-reflections more regularly.
Any significant moments / highlights / achievements in your life that you may like to share, and do you think your time at ICHK helped you prepare for them?
A number of significant moments with classmates and teachers at ICHK come from the various math competitions and contests that one particular teacher pushed me to join. Had it not been for the encouragement I received from my classmates and teachers, I don’t think I would’ve been able to participate and learn from so many of these amazing experiences. Another significant moment was participating as a press corp in the HK Model United Nations – something that I had once decided I was never going to do – but once again, my teachers and peers pushed me over several weeks to join, and to my surprise, I ended up being voted for the “Best Journalist” award.