When I was offered the position in December, my expectations for starting life at a new foreign school were drastically different. The world has changed, and that is not an understatement. My school maintained rigorous Covid-19 standards during introduction, which meant we couldn’t mix in large groups. While this meant that staff couldn’t spend as much time getting to know one another as they normally could, it also meant that I was able to build closer bonds with a smaller set of people.
I recognized that if I was going to be happy in a new place, I wanted to be more social than I had been before and meet other people as quickly as possible because I had earlier moved to a different area (even if it was just the north of England). I found a football club that was recruiting for players after a fast google search (in most cases a quick google search will suffice). I was at the workout on the first Thursday I arrived after sending a single email. The squad is currently halfway through the season and vying for promotion; it’s been a lot of fun, and several of the lads have become excellent friends. Now, I understand that not everyone is a footballer, and I am certainly not one, but the goal is to get out and about. Things you say will give you advise on everything from where to eat and drink to how to mail a package home. Schools like IGCSE Singapore can also be a great option.
Do not be afraid to ask for clarification on anything you are confused about — there will undoubtedly be many new terms and processes used by the school that you are unfamiliar with. And, given the current situation, it’s even more critical to have these ideas solidified in your mind as soon as possible. I felt extremely comfortable asking a lot of questions in a good and supportive setting like my new school. Remember that if you’re perplexed about anything, chances are that others are, too – and they could be pleased that you asked.
Many schools will expect these people to participate in extracurricular activities. In Singapore, however, federal rules stipulate that a group cannot consist of more than five people (there can be multiple groups within a large area but they cannot interact with each other). While this may be limiting for some club ideas, take advantage of the opportunity to be inventive. Is there anything you can do to organize clubs where students can work in small groups or where you can assist and oversee them as they complete tasks?
One of the presentations provided by our Co-principal during my induction week was about the impact of culture shock. This is something you should look at before going on a trip. So yet, I haven’t noticed any affects; perhaps I’ve already experienced them; I’m not sure. The premise is that you need to be aware of and accept the fact that you will be annoyed and disoriented in your new surroundings. As a result, you may begin to second-guess your decision to relocate. You might even begin to believe you’ve made a grave error. These sensations won’t last long, especially when you return home to find it’s -5 degrees!