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My Choices in IB

November, 2017
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“Choose subjects that you are most interested in, because ultimately those are the ones in which you have the best chances to improve.” – Joseph Hua, graduate of Wellington College International School.

“Choose whichever [subjects] you like, the option doesn’t matter.” – Chenny Jiang, Northwestern University. 

“For those applying for U.K., choose the subjects related [...]

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A Foreigner in Shanghai

November, 2017
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Once, a king believed he could defy God. To prove his might, Nimrod built the Tower of Babel, tall enough to reach the heavens. God, insulted by this challenge to his power, cast the plague of languages upon humanity. Thus did Nimrod’s recklessness cause division among us, forcing men to see their own brethren as [...]

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The Gap Year

September, 2017
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The Gap Year
 

JOY
“I am seated in an office, surrounded by heads and bodies,” begins David Foster Wallace in his magnum opus, Infinite Jest. “Just brains, sitting around, trying to decide how to outwit other brains,” thinks Dr. Jeremy Stone of Michael Crichton’s Andromeda Strain, as he witnesses nameless ministers gathered to discuss national security. [...]

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A Sense of Home - 1st Prize Winner - LittleStar CISB Short Story Competition ‘HOME’

May, 2017
1 comment 1634 views

 
A Sense of Home
Maybe I’m a lot like Dorothy in The Wonderful Wizard of OZ, clicking my heels together saying, “There’s no place like home.” Even before the school bell rings, telling me classes are finished for the day, my feet are already in motion, doing the happy clap-clap-clap heel dance!  My home makes me [...]

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HOMEBOUND - 1st Prize Winner - LittleStar CISB Short Story Competition ‘HOME’

April, 2017
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HOMEBOUND
 
Light. Darkness. False light in absence of the true. Thought is a sovereign hallucinogen. Alternating strobes. Black white bands sear vision. Cones and rods. Ocular mechanics. Organics. Flesh. Body. Embodied. Serendipity. Spiritual syzygy. It’s a matter of perspective. Lightyears in an instant. The usual irony. A bloody tang. But it only seems that way.
 
Feels [...]

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TO ONE, TO ALL - 2nd Prize Winner - LittleStar CISB Short Story Competition ‘HOME’

April, 2017
1 comment 417 views

TO ONE, TO ALL
 
ZERO.
I exist because she willed me to. Age thirty-five, the Chinese woman longed for a child, a daughter, to hold. Thus, on January 1st, 2000, the first day of the month, of the year, of the century, I took my first breath, a lungful of [...]

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What It Means to Be Home - 3rd Prize Winner, LittleStar CISB Short Story Competition ‘HOME’

April, 2017
1 comment 333 views

WHAT IT MEANS TO BE HOME
 
You stare at the dull gray table.
You feel the officer’s eyes staring into you like that of a ghost. He was the one that came when the store called the police. With a small glimpse, he was around thirty, fair-skinned with dark brown [...]

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What Will You Take in Your Backpack?

June, 2016
No comments 621 views

What Will You Take in Your Backpack?
—YCIS Class of 2016 Graduation Speech
 
Do you guys all remember when you first came to Yew Chung International School?
I want you to take you guys back to the night before your first day at YCIS. You laid out your uniform, shoes, and [...]

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SPIRIT OF THE SAKURA TREE - 2nd Prize Winner (Group III: 13-15 years)

April, 2016
No comments 766 views

 

SPIRIT OF THE SAKURA TREE
She was already dead. Yuuki Miyamoto had to keep reminding herself, over and over again, like a chant. To him, she no longer existed. She was no more than a spirit now, who was forever bound to the Sakura tree that stood isolated and lonely at the top of a [...]

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1st Prize Winner (Group IV) - If They Find Us

April, 2016
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IF THEY FIND US

Thunder rumbled warmly outside. Rain fell like a lullaby of gentle drumming fingers against the window in a world lined with tar and concrete, simmering in the faint glow of neon yellow light. The bedroom was cosily dark, colored in mottled beige and soft creams and itchy carpeting. On the bed, a [...]

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1st Prize Winner (Group III) - If We Ever Blame Literature

April, 2016
No comments 986 views

IF WE EVER BLAME LITERATURE
Years ago, humans read and wrote. There was always something to say and learn. The synonyms and antonyms, verbs and adjectives, modifiers and pronouns — this endless list of terminology and definitions built up, accumulating upon a mountain of words. Full of fantasies and fiction, the humans learned that they [...]

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1st Prize Winner (Group II) - If I Miss…

April, 2016
1 comment 1124 views

IF I MISS…  
“Daddy, come on!” I used to shout impatiently when the tantalizing smell of burritos hovered above me. Back then, as a four year old living in my home town of San Ramon, I would often run as fast as my short, stubby legs would carry me to my favorite fast food restaurant.  Surrounding [...]

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1st Prize Winner (Group I) - Honey Boy

April, 2016
No comments 1003 views

 
HONEY BOY
 
I and F. Two little letters but such a big word.
If Neil Armstrong hadn’t gone to the moon, there’d have been no giant leap for mankind.
If Beethoven didn’t find his love for music, our world would be full of rock music.
And if James turned left rather than right, none of this would have ever [...]

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Caged Bird

November, 2015
1 comment 908 views

 
CAGED BIRD
 
The sky beckons to me.
Some days I can just feel the salty tang of rainwater in my mouth and the hair whipping in my face. It would be the freedom I have never known.
But most days, the reality of my confined life is obvious.
My eyes sting with unshed tears and the longing of what [...]

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Now, I am Free

February, 2015
No comments 1196 views

The sun is scorching
Here in Nigeria, the heat is almost unbearable. I stand where the shadows can greet me, watching as my brother walks off into the distance.
I turned to my mother, curious: “Mamma, when can I go to school too?”
Mamma said nothing. She took one last look at the horizon, and scanned our [...]

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