Monkey Pox

Written By: Lye Jae Vir (22-I1), Nur Khairunnisa (22-I1), Tan Ken Shin (22-A2), Hao Rui (22-A4)

Designed by: Alexia Teo (22-U1)


How it all started : 

In 1958, monkeypox was first identified in colonies of monkeys during an outbreak at an animal research facility in Copenhagen, Denmark. However, the first human case occurred in 1970 in the Democratic Republic of the Congo in a nine month old old boy. This occurred in a region that had just recovered from smallpox in 1968.

Since 1970, cases of monkeypox have arisen in Africa, such as in West and Central Africa. An outbreak outside of the Africas occurred in 2003 in the United States of America due to imported infected prairie dogs from Ghana, which led to over 70 new cases. 

Prior to 2022, several travel associated cases had been reported in the UK, Israel and the USA due to travellers from Nigeria. 

How did it come to Singapore?

On the 21st of June 2022, the first case of Monekypox was reported in Singapore. This came from a 42-year-old British male national who works as a flight attendant. He tested positive for monkeypox on 20 June. He is currently admitted to the National Centre for Infection Diseases. 

At the time of reporting, there are 10 reported cases of monkeypox which are unrelated. 

Photo from REUTERS

How it transmits : 

  1. Interpersonal transmissions include through direct contact with the skin, infection rash, scabs or bodily fluids of an infected individual. 
  1. It can also be transmitted via respiratory secretions during prolonged physical and face-to-face contact. 
  1. Touching belongings such as clothing that have made contact with the infection rash or bodily fluids is also 
  1. Foetuses can also be infected through the placenta should their pregnant mothers be infected.

Symptoms of infection. 

Common flu symptoms such as fever and headache. More unique symptoms include swollen lymph nodes and rashes across the body. Symptoms may appear from 5 to 21 days following infection. People with the infection are generally infectious from onset of fever until the skin lesions have scabbed over.

Photo from the Indian Express 

What does this mean for us?

Since monkeypox is spread primarily through direct contact rather than respiratory droplets, the likelihood of another pandemic as severe as COVID-19. Furthermore, our government would be more prepared for the pandemic with the covid measures still in place. However, we should still be vigilant and aware of this virus. Stay safe Eunoians!

EJ Canteen Guide: Food and Drinks To Try 

Written by: Carissa Aletha Liem (21-I1), Lian Zhi Qi (21-I1) 

Designed by: Leanne Soh (21-E6)

Photography: Claire Lee (21-U1), Lian Zhi Qi (21-I1)


If you have ever found yourself standing in the middle of the canteen unsure of what to buy for your next meal, or you have realised that you gravitate toward the same stall ordering the same dish everyday, this guide is for you! 

JAPANESE & KOREAN CUISINE: TERIYAKI DUCK RICE 

This bowl of goodness ($3.20) is made up of soft Japanese rice topped with a generous serving of duck slices coated in teriyaki sauce that delivers both umami and sweetness. To prevent taste fatigue, there is also a portion of raw cabbage on the side for you to munch on so that the saltiness does not overwhelm your tastebuds! 

Picture credit: Lian Zhi Qi 

DUCK RICE STALL: DUCK RICE

A favourite among Eunoians, the duck rice from the Duck Rice stall is a must-have in the canteen. The smoky, roasted duck topped with a generous amount of rich, delectable gravy is reminiscent of the dishes you would find in BBQ food stalls outside the school. 

Each generous helping of roasted duck is cooked perfectly well and the added cucumber with each serving ensures that you would not feel “jelat” [an expression of being sick of something due to overindulgence] or overwhelmingly full after eating such a rich dish. The fragrant and darkly coloured gravy is amazingly flavourful and when paired with the succulent duck, gives off an incredibly mouth-watering visual. 

A typical bowl would cost you around $3 to $4, which considering the generous serving of food that you get, is great value for money. For those who are still hesitant about what to try in the EJ canteen, this is definitely a dish worth ordering!

YONG TAU FOO: MALA (Soup/Dry)

Craving malatang on a rainy day? Fret not, the Yong Tau Foo stall got your back! If you don’t know what malatang is, it is a rich, nutty broth that is both spicy and numbing. This insanely flavourful and addictive dish has taken the local food scene by storm in recent years, causing people to ache for it every so often. 

Although the malatang served in our canteen does not provide as much of  a spice kick compared to those served outside, it can satisfy your cravings just fine as it is still relatively flavourful. 

“Malatang makes me feel loved on a cold, tiring day at school,” Claire Lee (21-U1) expresses. “[Eating it] feels like stepping into the gates of a heavenly compound. Simply spellbinding.”

Picture credits: Claire Lee 

Another mala dish you can find here is malaxiangguo, which directly translates to spicy stir-fry hotpot in English. This dish is served with a multitude of ingredients, including meat and vegetables, are handpicked, fried and heavily seasoned with mala seasoning. 

It is important to note that the stall only provides one standard level of spice, instead of the usual three spice levels offered by most stalls outside. The spiciness is tolerable for most, so do not  be afraid to try it! 

One ingredient I would strongly recommend is the sweet potato wide noodle which is extremely chewy and offers a healthier alternative to instant noodles. 

A typical bowl varies from $4 to $5. While the dishes are on the pricier side, they guarantee satisfaction. 

YONG TAU FOO: LAKSA 

A spicy-savoury dish that rivals hawker-quality laksa is another student favourite in the Eunoia canteen. The rich and fragrant red stock, flavoured with creamy coconut milk and dried shrimp, is frequently sought after by our students to bring warmth and comfort on a cold, rainy day. 

For those who wish to alleviate the spice of the broth, I would recommend the egg tofu and tofu fishcake, which both dampens the spice well without taking away the richness of the mouth-watering soup. However, also take note that the spice would not overwhelm ormaski the strong flavours of the soup, so do not hesitate to try it! 

The price of each bowl depends on the toppings you handpick, but a typical bowl with 3 to 4 toppings would cost you around $4.20, which is a relatively reasonable amount for the portion that you get. 

YONG TAU FOO: TOMATO

Though less popular among students, the tomato soup is still worth a mention as a nourishing comfort food. It is aromatic, tangy and delicious, with a mellow tomato flavour that is not overwhelming at all. Hence, even if you would usually steer away from tomato-based sauces, don’t hesitate to try this soup! 

An important note is that an additional $1 will be charged if you were to add a soup base, which I highly recommended as the tomato base on its own can be slightly salty and acidic at times. Hence, lots of leafy vegetables or mushrooms would be suitable options to go with the soup, in order to neutralise the acidity

Similar to the laksa, the price of each bowl depends on the amount of toppings you choose, but on average, it would  cost about $4.20 to $4.50 for 3-4 different toppings. 

FRUIT & DESSERTS STALL: ICED LATTE 

The iced latte ($2) was recommended to me by a friend one day and I’ve had it once every few days since then. The cup is filled with equal portions of foam and coffee and one can either stir the foam in or enjoy it as it is. I like that the coffee is not too strong, leaning more toward the sweet side. 

Picture credits: Lian Zhi Qi 

Do not expect to be instantly energised by this though, as the caffeine level is probably quite low. 

DRINK STALL: CHOCOLATE WAFFLE 

These waffles ($1.20) are perfect for breakfast, an afternoon snack in-between lessons or as a reward for yourself. 

On a lucky day, these waffles will be pandan flavoured, warm, soft and slathered with a generous layer of chocolate. 

Occasionally, the waffle may be disappointing as it maybe dry and dissatisfying. 

Picture credits: Lian Zhi Qi 

A little tip would be to order a waffle in the morning as it is freshest at this time of the day!

These waffles are significantly thinner than those outside of EJ, they definitely are the most accessible for Eunoians especially when the waffle cravings hit. 

DRINK STALL: TEH PENG 

Teh peng (iced tea with milk) ($1.20) is definitely a crowd-pleaser, with its smooth texture and coldness that gives us respite in our unbearably hot weather. Our drink stall’s teh peng has the right amount of condensed milk without being too overly sweet, and can be compared to those in the coffee shops!

WESTERN STALL: ASSORTED FRIED SNACKS (Fries, Potato Wedges, Spring Rolls, Prawn Fritters)

For Eunoians who are in the mood for warm, savoury snacks, fret not, the Western stall provides a multitude of delectable options to choose from. The tasty snacks ($1-$2) are freshly made each day and are flavoured just right, without being too salty or overly bland. Though sometimes they can be rather oily, as it is not far from the normal expectations for fried foods. Hence, if you are in the mood for a warm and quick snack, pop by the Western stall and grab a bag of fried goodies! 

CHINESE RICE: OVEN BAKED CHICKEN & FRAGRANT RICE   

The oven baked chicken is incredibly aromatic and cooked till tender, paired with rice that gives off a hint of chicken-oil fragrance, making a well-balanced and mouth-watering dish. The crispy, golden chicken skin gives a nice variance in texture and the rice can be further drizzled with light soy sauce to enhance the umami flavours of the dish. 

The stall also offers a drizzling of spicy curry sauce which provides the dish with an added dimension. The chilli here is also especially fresh and biting (though it makes a delicious pairing with the chicken), so for those who might veer away from spice, choose your condiments carefully! 

Each plate would cost you an average of $3.50 to $4,  depending on the number of sides you add. Do come down to the canteen early if you are keen on patronising this stall as you might end up queuing for more than fifteen minutes, which is a testimony of the quality of food sold here!  

With the diverse range of food options available in our canteen, you will no doubt find something that you love. Each stall offers something different and just as delicious as the last, so do not  be afraid to step out of your comfort zone and try something new daily!

‘The Father’ – Movie Review

Written by: Hao Rui (22-A4)

Designed by: Rebecca Yap (22-O1)


The Oscar-winning movie, The Father, was adapted from French playwright Florian Zeller’s stage play. Inspired by his grandmother’s experience of suffering from dementia, Florian framed this play to let the audience view the world from the eyes of a dementia patient, who is also the main character of this movie, Anthony. For example, Anthony’s son-in-law, Misnamed many times throughout the movie. The furniture in Anthony’s flat also keeps changing their positions or their appearance. Hence, the movie seems  illogical at first. However, once the audience gets the idea that they are experiencing the life of a patient of dementia, everything makes sense. 

Rather than simply being a movie, The Father is more like a first-person VR experience. The audience can feel the frustration of dementia patients when they cannot figure out what is happening in the movie. Personally, I believe the most effective way to make people  cognisant of dementia and its debilitating effects on one’s life, is by giving them the chance to experience the struggles themselves. This is because It is hard for people to put themselves in others’ shoes when they do not even understand what others are experiencing. 

According to HealthHub, in Singapore, 1 in 10 people above the age of 60 suffer from dementia.Dementia is not merely the loss of memory, it can also affect the patients’ mental health. Illnesses like depression, paranoia, and anxiety disorders can occur  along with dementia. Hence, it is important for the family of dementia patients to constantly pay attention to their emotions. Sending such patients to nursing homes to receive professional help may be a viable option, but the drawback is that loneliness may worsen their mental issues if their families do not provide them with enough support.

However, the families of the patients are under tremendous pressure. Aside from focusing on their personal lives, they have the added burden of paying attention to the patient round the clock. This is evinced in the scene in The Fatherwhere Anthony’s daughter was so frustrated and exhausted that she had no choice but to send Anthony to a nursing home since she needed to deal with her personal affairs. 

This movie really portrays the struggles of dementia patients and their families. I believe this movie is crucial in heightening societal awareness regarding the plight of dementia patients and their families. It urges society to take action  to provide them with the help they need. Therefore, I would recommend this movie since it is fabulous as both a piece of art and a type of social campaign.

PERISCOPE APRIL 2022 SUMMARY

Written by: Lye Jae Vir (22-I1), Nur Khairunnisa (22-I1), Tan Ken Shin (22-A2), Hao Rui (22-A4)

Designed by: Alexia Teo (22-U1)


Welcome back to another edition of our monthly summary of the happenings around the world! From China’s successful satellite launch to changes in adoption laws, we have various interesting news summaries in store for you! Read on to find out more!

Global

China’s successful launch of the new satellite for earth observation

On April 7th this year, China launched their new Earth Observation Satellite, Gaofen-3 03, from a Long March-4C and it has since entered orbit successfully. The aim of this new launch is to improve the observation of our land, water and atmosphere via stable synthetic aperture radar (SAR) images. These images boast  a 1-metre resolution together with a one-day revisit period, which improves networking capabilities. This new satellite will be networked with the existing orbiting Gaofen-3 and Gaofen-3 02 satellites to form a revolving “Sky eye’ in space. 

This new satellite would improve global coverage and revisiting capabilities, as while the original satellite took 3.5 days to revisit the same area, with the addition of another, that interval has been reduced to 5 hours. This enhances data support for China’s marine development, terrestrial environmental resource monitoring and emergency disaster prevention and mitigation. It would also improve China’s research and development in the meteorology, agriculture and water conservancy sectors. 

The satellite and carrier rocket were developed by the Shanghai Academy of Spaceflight Technology under the China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation. This launch also marks the 414th mission for the Long March series carrier rockets.

What’s going on with Pakistan in April 

Since Pakistan’s independence in 1947, no Pakistani prime minister has finished their five-year term. National cricket champion turned devout Islamist politician, former Pakistani prime minister – Imran Khan – has been ousted in a no-confidence vote that took place on 10 April 2022.

Imran Khan, who was elected in 2018, campaigned on an anti-establishment platform to root out corruption and to tackle poverty, riding on a wave of populist sentiment from people who had grown disillusioned with the country’s political dynasties.

Despite this, his downfall occurred against the backdrop of record double-digit inflation and the withdrawal of political support from both coalition allies and the military. In a last-bid attempt to stop the vote, Imran Khan dissolved parliament and declared that fresh elections would occur soon. The opposition appealed to the Supreme Court, who overturned the decision and allowed the vote to pass.

With Pakistan in political turmoil, parliament has elected Shehbaz Sharif, a member of the dynastical politics that Imran Khan campaigned against back in 2018. 

Adding on to the politically precarious climate, there are signs that Imran Khan is not letting up. Holding three public rallies that have attracted thousands since his removal, Khan has propagated unproven allegations of Western conspiracies against him.

He is expected to contest the next election in 2023.

In a speech at a rally on 13 April, Khan thundered, ‘’I wasn’t dangerous when I was in government – But I will be now.”

Decades of political volatility in Pakistan do not seem to be subsiding anytime soon.

Regional

How the Ukraine War will Affect Asia

On the 24th of February, Russia invaded Ukraine, escalating the tensions between the two countries greatly. Ever since the start of the war, many sanctions have been imposed on Russia, namely the banning of Russian oil and gas imports as well as the international sanctions on technology by the US and UK. Unsurprisingly, these bans, as well as other outcomes of the war, puts Asia in an uncomfortable position. 

For instance, many Chinese technological companies rely on Russia’s consumer market to earn profits. This poses a detrimental threat to China’s economy. The invasion also puts pressure on Asian countries to choose sides in this conflict. Additionally, the US has also put considerable pressure on South Korea, Singapore, and Japan to fully condemn Russia’s invasion. 

However, India’s case is not as straightforward. Given that India is the second-largest market for the Russian defence industry, as well as the two countries having a strong diplomatic relationship, India is very careful not to fully condemn Russia’s actions in the war. 

To sum up, the Russia-Ukraine war does not only pose challenges to those who align themselves with Russia, but to the entirety of Asia. 

Ramadan amid the COVID-19 pandemic in Asia

Bazaars and group gatherings are back in Asia during Ramadan this year as Covid-19 curbs eased across the region. 

Malaysia is in the endemic phase of living with the coronavirus, with 79.3% of its total population fully vaccinated and 48.7% having taken booster shots. Except for face masks, which remain compulsory for everyone, most of the Covid-19 restrictions imposed from March 2020 have been lifted. Businesses have been allowed to operate at full capacity from April 1. Not surprisingly, the Malaysian government’s move to ease most restrictions have brought cheer to the bazaar traders, who said they were ready to return to “normalcy” and, hopefully, recover financially after spending more than two years in a slump. The Ramadan bazaars are pop-up food stalls which are allowed to operate during the fasting month that started last Sunday. Most, if not all, offer a large variety of food on street corners. Business is booming at Malaysia’s Ramadan bazaars as vendors report a spike in sales with thousands thronging the stalls after two years of strict Covid-19 restrictions crimped visitors and profits. 

The ever-popular Geylang Serai Bazaar also returned to  Singapore this month after a 2-year halt due to COVID-19. The Bazaar is back with fan favourites, such as “The Original Vadai”, as well as more novel items such as paellas and yakult cakes.

Down south in Indonesia, the country is gearing up for its largest ever movement of people, with more than 85 million returning home to towns and villages across the sprawling archipelago, ahead of Hari Raya Aidilfitri early next month. Extra measures are being put in place to prevent a surge in Covid-19 cases. Most of those involved in the annual exodus – better known as mudik – live in Greater Jakarta and other major cities and they will start heading home by air, land and sea from the fourth week of this month, according to government surveys.

Local

Parliament endorsed White Paper on Singapore Women’s Development

After nine and a half hours of debate, Parliament endorsed the White Paper on Singapore Women’s Development on April 5 (hereinafter referred to as ‘the White Paper’). The White Paper’s first section summarises key milestones in Singapore women’s development from 1959 to 2022. It then introduces the government’s 25 action plans in 5 main areas to improve the lives of women in Singapore. The five main areas include equal opportunities in the workplace, recognition and support and caregivers, protection against violence and harm, other support measures for women, and mindset shifts. All of the plans aim for tackling gender stereotypes and gender inequality in Singapore. 

The discussion about the White Paper started early ago in September last year. Three female political officer holders conducted a virtual dialogue titled ‘Conservations on Women Development’ to collect feedback and recommendations on the topic. There were 160 conversations in total, with over 5,700 participants. According to Minister for Home Affairs and Law, Mr K.Shanmugam, all these responses would then form the basis of the White Paper. 

In the conclusion of the White Paper, it mentions that the action plans will be implemented in a ten-year roadmap. The Government will continue to review and enhance measures to support Singapore women with community partners and will conduct a mid-point review in 2027. 

Extensive changes being made to adoption laws 

Amendments to the current set of adoption laws are being made, with three main aims in mind; to ensure that adopted children are adopted into good homes, having stated that is mandatory for prospective parents to be free of convictions of serious crimes including sexual, violence, or drug-related offences. The set of laws will also define what it means to be suitable to adopt; which has been clarified that only heterosexual married couples fall under this description. 

Another aim of the amendments is to deter undesirable practices in the adoption sector by ensuring transparency. To elaborate, agencies will be required to publish a list of both monetary and non-monetary payments and rewards regarding all adoption-related matters. The new rules will help deter large handouts from being given to birth mothers, with the intention of tempting them to drive their child up for adoption. Such handouts to the child’s biological or adoptive parents for the adoption are now made illegal, in order to prevent the child in question from being treated like a commodity. 

Additionally, all payments related to adoption will now be regulated by the Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF) to ensure adoption agencies only charge for reasonable adoption related expenses.

In short, the changes introduced seek to provide children who are being adopted with good homes, prevent unethical practices revolving around money, and break cycles of abuse. 

Conclusion

We have now come to the end of this month’s summary. See you in June! 

Bibliography:

China’s successful launch of the new satellite for earth observation

What’s going on with Pakistan in April 

  1. Ellis-Peterson, H; Shah, M, B. (2022, April 9). Pakistan Parliament Ousts Imran Khan in Last-minute Vote https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/apr/09/pakistan-on-brink-of-crisis-as-imran-khan-blocks-no-confidence-vote

How the Ukraine War will affect Asia

  1. Carter, L., Krishnan, M., Hutt, D., & Ahmed, Z. (2022, March 21). Ukraine war: Asian nations feel economic brunt of conflict. DW. https://www.dw.com/en/ukraine-war-asian-nations-feel-economic-brunt-of-conflict/a-61201302
  2. Stavridis, J. (2022, February 24). Ukraine conflict will have a significant impact on Asia. Nikkei Asia. Retrieved April 29, 2022, from https://asia.nikkei.com/Opinion/Ukraine-conflict-will-have-a-significant-impact-on-Asia 
  3. BBC. (2022, April 11). What sanctions are being imposed on Russia over Ukraine invasion? BBC News. Retrieved April 29, 2022, from https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-60125659 
  4. Xi, J. (2022, March 9). How Russia’s Ukraine invasion weighs on China’s economy. VOA. Retrieved April 29, 2022, from https://www.voanews.com/a/how-russia-s-ukraine-invasion-weighs-on-china-s-economy-/6476439.html 
  5. Council on Foreign Relations. (n.d.). Russia’s ties to Southeast Asia and how they affect the Ukraine War: Part 3, Singapore and Vietnam. Council on Foreign Relations. Retrieved April 29, 2022, from https://www.cfr.org/blog/russias-ties-southeast-asia-and-how-they-affect-ukraine-war-part-3-singapore-and-vietnam 

Ramadan amid the COVID-19 pandemic in Asia

  1. Rodzi, N. H. (2022, April 9). Thousands throng ramadan bazaars in Malaysia, raising crowd control worries. The Straits Times. Retrieved April 26, 2022, from https://www.straitstimes.com/asia/se-asia/thousands-throng-ramadan-bazaars-in-malaysia-raising-crowd-control-worries 
  2. Yulisman, L. (2022, April 9). In Indonesia, Stallholders, customers cheer return of tradition during Ramadan. The Straits Times. Retrieved April 26, 2022, from https://www.straitstimes.com/asia/se-asia/in-indonesia-stallholders-customers-cheer-return-of-tradition-during-ramadan 

Parliament endorsed White Paper on Singapore Women’s Development

  1. Mei, T. (2020, September 20). Singapore to conduct review of women’s issues to bring about mindset change for gender equality. The Straits Times. Retrieved April 26, 2022, from https://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/singapore-to-conduct-review-of-womens-issues-to-inculcate-mindset-change-for-gender
  2. Min, C. H. (2022, April 5). MPs unanimously endorse White Paper on Singapore Women’s Development. CNA. Retrieved April 26, 2022, from https://www.channelnewsasia.com/singapore/parliament-debate-singapore-women-development-white-paper-2609711
  3. Min, C. H. (2022, April 5). MPs unanimously endorse White Paper on Singapore Women’s Development. CNA. Retrieved April 26, 2022, from https://www.channelnewsasia.com/singapore/parliament-debate-singapore-women-development-white-paper-2609711
  4. WHITE PAPER ON SINGAPORE WOMEN’S DEVELOPMENT. (n.d.). Singapore Council of Women’s Organisations. Retrieved April 26, 2022, from https://www.scwo.org.sg/wp-content/uploads/2022/03/White-Paper-on-Singapore-Womens-Development.pdf
  5. Ng, M. (2021, September 18). Concrete proposals to tackle women’s issues to be presented in early 2022: PM Lee. The Straits Times. Retrieved April 26, 2022, from https://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/community/concrete-proposals-to-tackle-womens-issues-to-be-presented-in-early-2022-pm-lee
  6. Yuen, T. (2022, March 28). Egg freezing, more flexi-work among policy changes in White Paper on S’pore women. The Straits Times. Retrieved April 26, 2022, from https://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/egg-freezing-more-flexi-work-among-policy-changes-in-white-paper-on-spore-women

Sick Beats – April 2022 Spring Collection

Written by: Ashley Chean (22-O1), Benedict Keng (22-U3), Cheng Zhi Shan (22-U1), Chloe Tan (22-I6), Darius Chen (22-E4), Eris Kek (22-I6), Rebecca Yap (22-O1), Sophia Chiang (22-O1)

Designed by: Cheng Zhi Shan (22-U1), Darius Chen (22-E4), Eris Kek (22-I6), Rebecca Yap (22-O1), Sophia Chiang (22-O1)


Imagine standing in the bustling streets of Japan, with the cherry blossom trees all around you. They’ve just bloomed, and the light pinks are dripping off their petals as they spiral in the air. Your hand brushes a fallen petal, as you walk down the streets, smelling the sweetness of the flowers in the light passing breeze, watching them fall as you hum to your favourite tunes. What would you be listening to? 

Sick Beats brings you a curated selection of our favourite songs to bring the perfect vibes of spring to your very own room, so that you too can replicate the feeling of spring in Singapore! We bring to you our memories of spring, captured in a couple of tunes to bring you the joy and brightness of spring. 

Beginning with an entrancing violin melody that transports you to a magical world of flowers and light, Flowering (개화) heads the debut single album of the South Korean band Lucy. The lyrics liken winter to a person who has drifted far from the singer, accompanied by the hopes that this person will bring warmth to them again in the form of spring. The bright melody contrasts with the bittersweet lyrics that mention how even if the singer remains alone, they maintain the hope that “it is going to bloom blue”, perhaps hinting that spring will eventually arrive no matter if the season is happy or sad. Despite the tone of the lyrics, the radiant melody with unique instrumentation and soaring vocals is bound to put a spring in your step. I am often left imagining myself running across fields of flowers to the melody of this song. If you close your eyes for just a moment, this song will take you on a journey, allowing you to forget about the present, even if only momentarily.

Coming from famous South Korean indie band Busker Busker, Cherry Blossom Ending (​​벚꽃 엔딩) has an uplifting and infectious melody which captures the feelings of falling cherry blossoms with various acoustic sounds. In the lyrics, the singer reminisces about a time when he was walking hand in hand with his lover on a street filled with cherry blossoms. Just like how spring is the season of love, especially with the flowers and sweet smells all around, this song definitely brings about heart-fluttering memories of being with your family and friends, while enjoying time together during springtime, as it has done for me. With the many stresses of school life, if you are missing the feeling of spending time together with your loved ones, this song is for you. 

Starting off with a fast-paced and light-hearted melody and combined with the singer’s own angelic voice, ‘If I could ride a bike’ could be easily misunderstood as a simple love song tinged with the flowery feel of spring. However, as the song progresses, the tone of the song shifts from one that is rather pleasant to one burdened with solemnity. ‘If I could ride a bike’ talks about the singer’s hope to explore the many beauties of love together with her partner, but such a dream is disrupted by the sad acknowledgement that she “is never able to do [those] things, so [she’s] just left imagining”. While it is not the happiest song, ‘If I could ride a bike’ manages to twist both a simple tune and lyrics into something that is full of emotions and imagery, and strongly deserves a listen. 

“Just know I’m right here hoping that you’ll come in with the rain.” Taylor Swift’s fourth track off her Fearless Platinum Edition will tug at your heartstrings and take you back to a lost feeling of bittersweet separation and longing. This song, paired with a nostalgic tune and artistic composition, will remind you of those fond memories . Come in with the rain speaks of Taylor Swift’s hope that an estranged lover will return without her entreatment, just like how the rain comes in when she leaves her “window open”. Pictures of the rain and cloudy skies will transport you to a spring unlike any other, and will walk you down a journey of both desperation and hope. However, just as spring passes, pain too, will pass. This song will definitely take you on an emotional rollercoaster ride, and leave you wanting for more.

The cool, offbeat tones of subside transport the listener to a park bench while they’re sipping a cup of coffee, admiring the view. Subside is from Eloise’s album called This Thing Called Living. The deep blue-green flavours of this song express the longing she feels for someone, reminding one of a calm, peaceful lake, with her harmonies weaving a blanket of comfort around the listener. This song is one of my favourites, with its low-key lofi beats in the background making it perfect for an afternoon of relaxation and wonderment.

Cornelia Street is a song from Taylor Swift’s seventh album, Lover. This song encompasses the bittersweet hues of spring, as she reminisces about her past memories, both the good and the bad. The feeling of dancing on the streets is captured in the upbeat tones of this song, which parallels  the falling leaves of spring. The brightness of this piece brings about personal memories with a tinge of nostalgia to any listener, as it has done for me.

This piece (not song, as classical snobs might correct) is the second instalment of Seycara Orchestra’s series of contemporary orchestral pieces based on the four elements – water, wind, earth and fire. The composer, Yuang Chen, along with the rest of his orchestra manage to perform a piece that reminds one of a spring breeze. The use of the flute helps to characterise the piece as lively and swift, leaping cheekily in passages all while being spurred on by the accompaniment of the strings and harp. Although this might be subjective, I personally like to imagine this piece as a bird soaring over a busy cityscape, watching buildings and people pass in a blur. The lack of lyrics makes this piece an excellent listen while studying and the pace of the song is sure to keep you high-spirited as well. If you ever need a piece to lift your spirits, this piece would surely serve as the wind beneath your wings.

Glitter is the final song from Tyler, the Creator’s 4th Studio album – Flower Boy. The first half of the instrumental consists of  pretty synth leads reminiscent of a relaxing walk in the park, complementing Tyler’s emotional and raw ruminations on falling in love – ‘everytime you come around I feel like glitter’. The track is then divided by a short 5-second electric guitar riff before the beat changes into something much slower-paced and dejected, again corresponding to Tyler’s insecurity- ‘This is one sided, yeah, I can’t lie’. This gives rise to the 2nd chorus anchoring the song together with the repetition of ‘scumf***flowerboy’ and ‘how ya feel’, encapsulating the duality of Tyler as a person as well as the stark contrast between his feelings. Overall, the song is a bittersweet joyride that captures the wistful melancholy of spring.

Released as part of the album Abbey Road, Here Comes The Sun is the most well-known song from The Beatles, with close to 800 million listens on Spotify. Written by George Harrison, the lines “It’s been a long, cold lonely winter” and “Here comes the sun” reflect his relief at the arrival of spring, after having a difficult year. (He had been arrested for marijuana possession and had his tonsils removed.) This song is one of my comfort songs as it serves as a reminder that tough times will pass and “it’s all right”. Should you need constant reassurance that everything will be alright, ‘Here Comes The Sun’ is here for you.

With that, we have come to the end of spring! We hope that you have enjoyed exploring some of our springtime tunes with us and that these songs help you to take some stress off from school life. Hopefully, the different songs were able to invoke your favourite memories of springtime, whether it be cheerful or emotional. We look forward to you guys joining us next month for more feel-good vibes! 

AAA #34

Designed by: Liew Yi Xuan (21-E1)

Question 1: Recently, I find it difficult to juggle between socialising with people that are not from the same class and my school work. Due to the fact that I don’t see them as often as my classmates, I can’t really socialise with them other than CCAs or outside of normal curriculum time. Thus, I find it hard to reject their time or spend time with them while trying to study during non-curriculum time. Please advise.

Hello! We completely understand your worries – it is indeed very difficult to manage the JC workload and your social life. Nonetheless, there are ways to help yourself through this dilemma! 

First of all, it’s a wonderful thing that you make such a great effort to stay in touch with friends outside of your class! Given the already hectic JC schedule, what you’re doing now is a great feat. 

It might be difficult to strike a balance between both friendships and your grades, however, there may be a way to do so. If your friends are similarly concerned about their studies, you could arrange to have a study date, in which you can both revise and enjoy their company! However, this will probably only work if you do not end up getting distracted by each other, which is another challenge of its own.

Seeing how you’re putting so much thought into maintaining your friendships, we’re sure that your friends appreciate your friendship, and would understand your decision. After all, they are fellow struggling students who can empathise with your struggles regarding the workload. 

If you still find it difficult to reject their requests to hang out, you could try finding quiet spaces to study, such as the library or various study spots around the campus. This would create an environment that is more optimal for studying, and would signal to your friends that you are not free at that moment in time. They would then be able to look for you later during your free time, allowing you to maintain your relationships while staying on task!

Aunt Agatha would like to assure you that things will work out; as long as you and your friends are considerate of each other, there will be a time to get together and catch up! 

Question 2: My friend won’t stop filming Tiktoks during lessons and it’s distracting. Help!

Hey there! Thank you for your open sharing. AAA would like to affirm that this is definitely a valid concern and provide some advice that may help you! Don’t worry, Aunt Agatha is here!

Firstly, it is completely understandable that a conducive environment is essential for optimal learning and we sympathise with your struggle. A classroom is a shared space and even a small distraction can be enough to prevent you from concentrating.

At the same time, your friend might not view their actions as distracting or a disturbance to others. They may feel they are just having some casual fun and have not considered the perspective of others who may not feel the same.

In this case, we strongly urge you to communicate with your friend! We believe this is the best long-term solution so as to preserve a harmonious environment in class for everyone involved. Everyone has their right to have a conducive classroom environment to study, so don’t feel bad! Besides, you are benefitting your other classmates too. 

You could try taking them aside and sharing your experience and feelings with them. By explaining your situation to them, they’ll better understand where you’re coming from and know that their actions are causing you distress. Be sure to emphasise that your sharing is not coming from a malicious place, and that you are merely trying to reach an understanding that benefits everyone. 

If you are nervous about the possibility of this intervention being perceived as a one-on-one confrontation, you could find other classmates who feel the same. Together, your friend would be better able to understand the extent of the distraction they might be causing in class and thus stop or minimise their actions.

Since the school campus is very large, you could recommend other non-study places for them to film Tiktoks at instead. (Such as the field, canteen, lift lobby, or cafe!) You could also suggest that they film these Tiktoks during their breaks, and not during lesson time, to avoid distracting other classmates.  

As fun as Tiktok can be, we fully realise that it can also be distracting to those who really wish to focus on their work. Hence, we hope that these tips are helpful to you in maintaining this balance with your friends in school! All the best!

Question 3: How do I deal with FOMO? All my friends are hanging out with each other but I have no time to spend on these social engagements because I have to juggle academic commitments. What should I do?

Hi! Aunt Agatha understands your worries and would like to reassure you that FOMO is a common sentiment amongst JC students. It is perhaps the dream of every student to attain the college triangle of needs that comprises good grades, a good social life, and enough sleep, but to do so would be a Herculean effort. Aunt Agatha can recommend ways to achieve a better balance of all of them!

You can initiate study sessions with your friends to maintain that harmonious balance between a social life and academic commitments, especially if you are someone who is motivated by studying with people! If you are taking similar subject combinations, you can even form a study group and discuss queries together. Additionally, it is never more rewarding than to go for a well deserved meal after an intense study session– and how better to spend this time than eating and chatting with friends? 

However, we understand that you may also prefer studying in solitude or get distracted by friends easily. Not to fret, for an alternative solution would be to maximise your time by engaging in productive studying alone, before asking your friends to join you for breaks.

It is very important to maintain a good study-life balance especially in JC where it is easy to burn out, so find something to motivate yourself– that could be spending break times with friends! While academic commitments may seem like an unrelenting stress factor which never ceases to exist, do remember to take care of your wellbeing and recharge so you can do even better, and spend time with your friends at the same time! Take care!

2022 A Level Results Release

Written by: Aaron Wong Jielun (21-I4), He Jizhao (21-U5), Harel Tan Zunn Yong (21-I2), Jachin Khoo Yangxun (21-U5), Liew Yi Xuan (21-E1), Nigel Ng Ngan Siang (21-A3), Tan Le Kai (21-I4)

Designed by: Rakshita Murugan (21-E1)

A Twosday to Conclude a Two-Year Journey

Photo Credit: Ananya Gupta, EJC Media

As the world celebrated the special palindrome of a date (22/2/2022!), it was an especially significant day for our JC3s who recently graduated! From the perspective of us juniors, our seniors showed spectacular tenacity in this tumultuous and intense run-up to the final examination of their structured education; especially in dealing with school closures due to the Delta variant.

Go sing, too loud

Make your voice break

Sing it out.

As the nostalgic lead-in music played, the graduating JC3s slowly made their way to their classrooms. 

Having listened to this song every morning for the past two years and this being the last time, “It brought back [memories] of the time not too long ago, coming to school with my classmates, and being late for school,” Jacqueline Fong, a graduating JC3, ruminated. 

The feeling of sentimentality is one shared by both teachers and students.

“It is always happy to see students coming back,” Mr Felix Lim, who has been teaching for 20-odd years, commented.

As they gathered in the classrooms for the last time in their CGs, there was a palpable atmosphere of anticipation that just emanated throughout the college. It was heartwarming to see that even after going their separate ways (as visible from the army uniforms sported by some of the guys), they were still able to show their gratitude and support to their teachers and classmates who had been with them every step of the way. This is what truly represents Eunoia!

Photo Credit: Lai Wing hyun, EJC Media

This much-awaited event kicked off with a warm welcome-back address by our new Principal, Mr Andrew Tan, as well as our previous Principal, Mrs Wong. The transition from old to new was truly felt at this moment, as the graduating students awaited to embark on their new journey. Congratulations were given by both Principals, as students listened with growing excitement.

The JC2 Dean of 2021, Mr Ganison, then proceeded to highlight the metaphor of nurturing plants and presented budding seeds of plants to represent growth. Just as Mr Ganison described, the J3s “sowed the seeds, watered them” and are now awarded with the fruits of their labour. Scholarship options were then shared, as many contemplated their next move with the future ahead. 

Mr Ganison then released the overview of class of 2021’s academic performance and commended the JC3s’ efforts in their two-year journey. Applause and cheers could be heard throughout the school, especially as excitement and celebration peaked for some subjects with exceptional results. 

Photo Credit: Ananya Gupta, EJC Media

Shortly after the exciting overview, a sense of suspense rose in every classroom as each JC3 anticipated receiving their results. Some cringed in their seats while waiting; some were murmuring with their friends and some were even giving out soft toys to help their friends deal with the anxiety. As an anonymous male J3 quipped, “It’s sort of funny to see everyone in casual attire, anxious to get their results. I kind of feel the anxiety too, [but] I feel excited to be in this old setting again.”

After an excruciating wait, the moment of truth was finally there. To many, this was a moment of liberation; to others, it was just a stepping stone to their next phase in life. One by one, the graduating students walked up to their teachers and received their results. Regardless of the results, the true ending of their tumultuous A Level journey was finally at hand.

The End Result

Photo Credit: Boo Qian Ning, EJC Media

The weight they held in their hands felt much heavier than mere slips of paper. Some were afraid to open their certificate books, while others flipped them open eagerly. During this time, the atmosphere greatly varied from class to class, and person to person, as everyone processed their results in their own different ways.

There were some who excitedly looked through their results with their friends in big groups, with cheers of joy and shrieks of happiness as the marks were revealed. 

“I want to thank all my classmates for helping me out during the 2 years and my teachers for their (academic) advice. I am ecstatic.” Qing Xiao Peng of 20-I4 was spotted with particular elation which found expression in his joyous leaps.

Other emotions were observed too. Some teared up, with their friends comforting them, to reassure them that it would be OK. Feelings of sadness and disappointment were common as well. Some people also stepped outside to the corridor to have a private space to process their results on their own. Phone calls were made, both to share the momentous news with friends and family, and to seek comfort from loved ones. Tears of both joy and sadness were shed.

The End… and the Beginning

As JC2s ourselves this year, we are all too aware that pretty soon, we will be in the exact same shoes as our seniors. With our own workload and stress piling up, we are all in awe of the courage and determination displayed by our seniors. As Mr Lim nicely sums up: “work hard, look forward, don’t wait till the last minute”.

We want to celebrate the efforts and struggles of everyone that sat for (as well as those who did not get to sit for) the A Levels: those who attained their desired grades, as well as those who did not. Even for the people whose journeys may not have turned out how they expected it to, we believe that all our seniors will forge the best paths for themselves.

As a JC3 (who wished to be anonymous) himself put it, “I think the most important thing is to keep moving forward. Even if you do badly, you have to go forward and take your next step in life.”

On behalf of all the JC2s, we wish our seniors all the best in their years ahead!

Photo Credit: Ananya Gupta, EJC Media