Students learn from travels during break

Letitia BusniakGeraldton Guardian

It’s safe to say not one of these Mid West school students complained about being bored over their school holidays.

Students from Geraldton Grammar School and Strathalbyn Christian College jetted off to locations across the globe over their recent school break.

Nine Geraldton Grammar students returned home this week from their second annual China Exchange program.

Students spent time touring before attending classes at Putuo No.2 Middle School in the area of Zhoushan City, Geraldton’s sister city.

Meanwhile, another four Geraldton Grammar School students were awarded scholarships through the Confucius Institute, where they travelled to the Zhejiang University in Hangzhou city.

Students participated in cultural excursions, including two days to Shanghai, while also attending language development classes during the 11-day trip.

Year 10 student Lauren Watt year said the entire journey was a unique and vibrant experience.

“China was amazing, learning Mandarin at school and then going to the country where it’s spoken was a new and wonderful experience,” she said.

“The cultural learning was one which couldn’t be taught in a classroom.”

Strathalbyn Christian College students set off for a different excursion, as a handful of students headed overseas for the East Timor Service Trip.

Year 10 to 12 students travelled to Timor Leste where they pitched in to help the locals, with some activities including teaching English and school maintenance and painting.

The students also spent time at the Casa Vida Bali Orphanage in Bali and helped out at a disabilities clinic.

Head boy Kaleb Crossley said he was surprised by the attitudes he found among the locals.

“I am astounded at how happy and giving the children seemed considering their circumstances and how materially poor they were,” he said.

The second group of Strathalbyn Christian College students stayed closer to home, travelling by road across Australia to join other students at the Fusion Australia Pilgrimage to Uluru in the Northern Territory.

The Year 9 students spent the excursion learning about Aboriginal culture and history while also visiting sacred sites.

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