By Colin Jun
Last Saturday, students from the Live Music Club performed the annual acoustic music concert “Unplugged.” Live Music Club was created with the goal of bringing good music, good food, and a good groove to Shanghai American School Pudong. The club has already hosted several music concerts, including Hardcore Parkour Concert in April and Cafeteria Show during lunch at SAS.
“Unplugged” primarily features acoustic versions of songs. In other words, there are no electronic instruments used in “Unplugged.” The show invites SAS Pudong performers as well as other talented performers from international schools across Shanghai.
The concert provided a space for international students in Shanghai to enjoy a variety of music from different cultures. Jane and Inyoung, SAS PD students, opened the concert with the American pop songs “Attention” and “That’s What I Like.” Following the mood set by Jane and Inyoung, Irene and Sam performed “Lucky,” and Eli Plonka performed “Liability” and “Perfect.” These American pop song performances invited the audience into the world of live music.
The concert introduced SAS PD students to music they may not have experienced before. Neal Lim performed a Japanese song “Yumekui Shoujo ( 沙上の夢喰い少女 )” by Yonezu Kenshi, a famous Japanese solo singer. Prego and Josh performed a Korean Song “Love Letter (러브레터).” Both songs were performed in their original languages.
Although many students couldn’t understand the lyrics, the performance provided an indirect experience to Korean and Japanese culture and their branches of music. The concert revealed how passionate the musicians at SAS PD and other international schools are.
The artistic passion of Xiaokun Dong, the leader of Live Music Club, was particularly noteworthy. He accompanied most of the performances; successfully collaborating with other school students with a short preparation time while also performing his song in the concert. Reflecting his passion (and of course, the passion of every member of the club), Live Music Club successfully hosted their annual “Unplugged 2017” concert.
For more information about Live Music Club, their musical passion and their future concerts, you can visit their Facebook page:
For the lineup of “Unplugged 2017,” check
By Grace Deng
On Wednesday, November 8th, two Shanghai American School Pudong busses crashed into each other on their way out of the back gate. Although no one was seriously hurt, two people suffered minor injuries due to the impact of the collision.
“The bus in front of us stopped abruptly and our bus couldn’t brake in time so we crashed,” said Andrew Lau, a junior was in one of the buses at the time. “We crashed straight on.”
One of the buses lost a taillight, while the other bus’ front window was completely shattered.
Shanghai American School’s STUCO and the school administration took this as an opportunity to remind students on bus safety, reminding people during Thursday’s grade level meetings to wear their seat belts in the case of collision. During the sophomore grade level meeting, Dr. Lee assured students that the school administration was working with the bus company to improve our bus riding experience and safety.
This bus crash comes after a series of complaints from students about the new bus company this year, as many students have raised concerns about late buses and missing class. One junior, Angie Fan, even claimed during the junior grade level meeting that busses have been cutting through lanes and speeding.
When asked about whether people have been wearing their seat belts more often in response to the bus crash, Jasmine Liu, a sophomore, replied “a little.” She says “not all the students have started wearing seat belts, but most of the elementary and middle school students have.”
Students suggest that the number of students wearing their seat belts depends largely on whether or not bus monitors can convince students to wear their seat belts.
Jessica Pu, a freshman, says “about two thirds of students on my bus wear their seat belts. Our bus monitor does a good job of telling them to do so. However, basically no one seems to wear seat belts on after school busses.”
“It’s easier to get everyone on smaller buses to wear their seat belts,” said Michelle Zhou, a junior. “My bus only has 4 people because I live in Puxi, but I hear from my friends that on the bigger buses, the bus monitors just yell out to wear their seat belts and no one takes them seriously.”
By Colin Jun and the Stress Zero Executive Team
One of our school organizations, Stress Zero, hosted Stress Awareness Week events from October 30 to November 2nd. Stress Zero is one of the new school organizations in our school, established to provide solutions and helps for relieving the stress of the high school students. The body is currently developing the peer mentoring program as well as one to one / group activities to lessen the stress levels of Shanghai American School students. As part of their stress relieving activity, Stress Zero prepared "Stress Awareness Week" events for the celebration of International Stress Awareness Day. (International Stress Awareness Day event was on November 1st, hosted by International Stress Management Association UK).
Stress Zero hosted three main events. From Monday to Thursday, Stress Zero prepared a wall poster that students can sign their answer to the question "What keeps you going?" Through this activity, the organization aims to increase the awareness of the International Stress Awareness Week as well as continue their research about solutions for stress. A lot of students participated in this activity, and the wall poster will be hung in school within few days.
During the Common Ground period on Tuesday (October 31), Stress Zero invited some of the Common Grounds for a unique activity. After a brief introduction of the organization, the executive team announced the start of the first Stress Zero Meme Competition.
In the meme competition, the organization accepted submission of funny memes through WeChat and Snapchat for a week. 22 memes have been submitted by the high school students, and the winner was announced on during Community meeting today (1st - anonymous, 2nd - Elih Hope, 3rd - anonymous). The organization examined all the memes and selected the winner through the voting procedure within the members. (More submissions of memes can be found on stress-zero.weebly.com).
The event itself turned out more successful than expected by the club members. In an interview, Paul Kim, one of the executive members of Stress Zero, reflected on his first experience with the following : "As a relatively new organization, we believe that we were successful in reaching our goals. Firstly, we were able to publicize our club to the SAS community, allowing us to reach out to more interested people. Secondly, we were able to raise awareness about stress awareness week, a fact that would have been overlooked by almost all students. Thirdly, we provided a brief moment of ecstasy with our meme selections."
By Kristen Fu
High school students face many choices, one of which is whether to take the SAT or the ACT. Standardized testing remains a requirement for US colleges, so students, mostly juniors and seniors, have to take time out of their busy schedules to prepare for this test. SAT and ACT are the two primary standardized tests accepted by colleges.
In previous years, the SAT was the more popular option amongst students, but, since the new format of the SAT was implemented in 2016, more students now opt to take the ACT. Students can struggle to decide which standardized test to do. Ultimately, by reviewing key differences between the tests, students can decide which one is the best fit for them.
The SAT and the ACT are both content-based tests, but differ in the knowledge they test. For the SAT, the three sections are Reading, Math, and Writing and Language. On the other hand, the ACT has four sections: Reading, Math, English, and Science. Despite the ACT having more sections, the questions that make up the test are regarded as more straightforward and less difficult to understand than the SAT’s evidence and context-based questions. With the SAT, the difficulty of the questions rises as the section continues while the the difficulty on the ACT is random. These are just some of the key differences that students take into account when deciding which standardized test will give them a higher chance at a better score.
Many students are preparing to take either the SAT or the ACT right now. Students who decided on the ACT voiced a variety of reasons for their choice. Michelle Zhou, a junior who took the ACT in October, said “I took the ACT because even though it has a science section and the SAT doesn’t, I personally feel that the time restrictions of the ACT doesn’t have a negative effect on my performance… I prefer the straightforwardness of the ACT’s questions.” Hanwen Cao, a junior who is taking it in December, “I feel like the SAT is more American-centric and doesn’t take into account the international students, which made me choose the ACT instead.”
On the other hand, students that chose the SAT based their decision on the format and differences between the tests. Grace Deng, a junior who is taking the SAT in December, said “I chose the SAT because I took a mock of the ACT, and found it really boring.”
By Grace Deng
Last Wednesday and Thursday, students from SAS Pudong’s high school performed the acclaimed musical Into the Woods. The performance brought together both middle and high school students for the first musical of the year.
Originally written by acclaimed composer Stephen Sondheim and playwright James Lapine, Into the Woods tells the story of a baker and his wife’s quest to reverse a curse of childlessness placed on them by a witch. On their quest, they meet characters from the well known Brothers Grimm and Charles Perrault fairy tales such as Little Red Riding Hood and Cindarella.
Despite a couple of mishaps such as flubbed lines, reactions to the musical were overwhelmingly positive. Laughter and clapping echoed through a full house at the Performing Arts Center on both nights, as tickets were completely sold out.
Highlights during the show included 11th grader Maddie Oberle’s stunning dress transformation as Cindarella, 11th grader Carlos Lao and 10th grader Andy Cho as the two Princes’ comedic performance of the well known Into the Woods song “Agony,” and 11th grader Hannah Power’s dramatic portrayal of the witch’s transformation from aging hag to youthful beauty.
Both the cast and the audience were delighted by their experiences with Into the Woods.
“It was really fun to be a part of,” says Rebekah Christensen, an 11th grader who played the dwarf Grumpy. “I met a lot of cool people and made some new friends.”
“Into the Woods was so good,” exclaimed Jason Kang, an 11th grader who went to watch Into the Woods on both Wednesday and Thursday. Joking, he added on that “the real star was the cow, Milky White!