By Kristen Fu and Colin Jun
Last week, on March 15th (Thursday) and March 16th (Friday), our wonderful SAS Pudong actors and directors performed the play Edward Scissorhands. This play is the SAS adaption of the dark fantasy movie Edward Scissorhands by Tim Burton. Similar to original movie, the SAS play emphasizes the character development of main character, Edward, who uniquely has scissor blades on his hands. Through Edward’s interaction with Boggs family and their neighbors, the SAS play conveys a clear message to our society: we have to acknowledge individual’s unique differences. Difference cannot be the reason for discrimination.
The SAS play adaptation generally followed the plot of the original movie by Tim Burton. However, the SAS play was not only about storytelling - it was also the assemblies which demonstrated the creativity of SASPD students. Different from the movie, the SAS play conveyed important messages and revealed the plot through the brilliant use of colors, unique stage properties and sound.
Although confined to the limited space of the Black Box Theater, the play cleverly utilized the compact and intimate setting to elevate the audience’s viewing experience . The audience were seated all around the center of the room, which acted as the main stage, as well as in the balcony of the theater. Similarly, the actors would often indirectly interact with the audience, allowing for a more engaging experience. A projector screen was often utilized in the play, often adding to the drama of certain scenes as well as the overall uniqueness of this particular adaptation.
The play also stresses the use of colors and props to create a cohesive and compelling production. By keeping the protagonist, Edward Scissorhands, in all-black and the rest of the suburban families in pastel colors, the difference between him and the rest of the town is emphasized. Similarly, by changing the color of the main lights, the drama of the scene increases as the audience reacts to the changes on stage. The use of props throughout the play, including the scissors on Edward’s hands and the well-crafted hedges that he cuts, elevates the visual nature of the play.
Overall, the SAS Pudong’s adaptation of the classic movie, Edward Scissorhands, was a viewing experience that was very different from most school productions. By cleverly using a more intimate environment through the artful use of sound, colors, and props, the adaptation stayed true to the original movie while offering their own unique twist.
By Grace Deng
On March 17, 2018, Shanghai American School’s Baobei Club hosted their annual Shanghai Charity Race. Meant as a fun scavenger hunt activity based off of the popular reality TV show “The Amazing Race,” teams raced around the Jinqiao-Kerry area, doing activities and finding clues along the way.
“It was a fun time to bond with friends and help out a charity,” said Isabelle, a participant.
Despite some hiccups along the way, such as having to stall the first place winners because they reached the second to last activity before set up at the finish line began, Baobei members were pleased by how smoothly the race ran. “You all killed it today and I could not be more proud,” the club president Adeena Liang told Baobei members at the end of the race, beaming. “Thanks so much for everything!”
First place went to a team of three seniors: Annabel, Julia, and Isabel. They won a free Shangri-La buffet worth over 1000 kuai and an employee store pass at Nike. According to the team, knowing the area well was key to their success. Second place went to juniors Rena and Carlos, a team of two who overcame the odds stacked up against them. They took home two Nike employee store passes. Finally, third place went to team “Jungle Gym:” Marcus, Devin, and David. They won KFC coupons.
As there were extra Nike employee passes, Baobei’s executive team decided to give prizes out for a plethora of different superlatives. The three winners all got extra Nike passes, winning most competitive, funniest team, and most creative in that order. Other superlatives include cutest team, won by Ms. Ballon, the club sponsor, and her sons, and most hardworking, won by juniors Paul, Gordon, and William.
Baobei was able to raise over 6000 RMB to help baby orphans in need through the Shanghai Charity Race, which to the Baobei members, was the most fulfilling part of the whole experience.
By Ryan Strong
Over the weekend of March 9th, ten members of the Quizbowl team left to participate in a competition in Singapore. Ultimately, around twelve teams competed to win in this Asia wide completion at Singapore American School.
On the morning of March 9th, at around eight o’clock, the team, supervised by Ms. K and Mr. Drury and led by Sean Yuan, flew to Singapore. The flight was a pleasant five hours, and after landing, the team got into the country without incident. After arriving at the hotel after grabbing a bite to eat, the group decided to leave to go to the famous Gardens by the Bay, with a group of tree-esque structures. After wandering through Singapore for an hour or so, the team eventually arrived, and after a little bit, returned to the hotel to study.
The following morning at around eight the group left the hotel to go to the school. There, the two teams from SAS competed in nine different rounds. The A Team, made up of Sean Yuan, Andrew Chang, Josh Li, William, and Ryan Strong, ultimately 6-3, losing to Singapore A, B and Guangzhou A. The B Team, including Fabio Schneider, Ben Shin, Sean, Ian, and Alex Wu, went 6-3 as well, loosing to Singapore A twice and Dulwich once. Ultimately, both teams tied for fourth place, behind (from 3rd to 1st place) Guangzhou A, Singapore B, and Singapore A. On top of this, Fabio Schneider was the third highest scoring person at the tournament on a per game basis. Several others had excellent games, including Ben Shin, who scored 110 points in a single game, with seven questions given five bonus each for speed. Thus, he won a medal. Several other players did an excellent job in terms of scores, with Sean Yuan and Ben Shin also being in the top ten scorers in the tournament.
Perhaps another person that is worthy of mention is the top scorer overall in the tournament. Her name was Elizabeth Enright, and she was the sister of the captain of Singapore A Team. She was on a team all by herself, and ultimately scored over 100 points per game. In fact, she defeated several teams all by herself, even though she was a freshman. Thus, in the future, the SAS quiz bowl team will have to work hard in order to match her talent and dedication.
Later than night, the team, exhausted and with a mixture of feeling tilted and being pleased, returned to the airport and took a flight to Shanghai at one in the morning. The flight was considerably less pleasant than the original, as everyone was exhausted. In fact, the author fell asleep right as the flight was taking off and essentially slept the entire flight.
Quiz bowl members generally had positive feelings on the match. “We’re quite surprised by how well the B team performed, given the disappointing results of our past performance in Puxi,” commented Fabio Schneider. Hopefully, progress for both the A and B team will continue into next year, and more people will be recruited next year for the team, as several members will be leaving next year.
By Cynthia Wang
Bitcoin, a revolutionary form of crypto currency, has transformed ideas of the way currency may be handled. From bitcoin came the commonalities of WeChat Pay and AliPay that we see today. The golden digital coin independent of government or state control has dominated world news; a single Internet search would turn up thousands of high-end news articles. Yet, many still do not know of bitcoin’s record, storage, and transaction system called Blockchain.
Blockchain is a public distributed ledger that underlies bitcoin. A transparent and secure growing list or records stored as “blocks” of information, Blockchain stores information across networks of personal computers. No one owns the system, yet all who use it can help build to it. The security of Blockchain is definite with strings of cryptography preventing the information within such “blocks” to be counterfeited by anyone else.
Each “block” of Blockchain consists of three major components: data, hash, and the previous block’s hash. Data contains the details about the transaction made, whether it be money or information. A hash, like a fingerprint, is a line of code identifying the block. However, if the block is damaged or changed in any way, the hash is changed. Lastly, with the hash of it’s previous block, a connected and secure chain of blocks. If one were to tamper with any of the blocks of a Blockchain, then all of the following blocks would be rendered invalid due to the hash of the tampered block changing. Even though hackers could quickly add new blocks to fix the chain and cover up their tracks, the developers of Blockchain created a method called proof-of-work to inhibit this. The proof-of-work mechanism slows down the speed of creating new blocks, hence creating a situation where hackers wouldn’t be able to cover up their tracks fast enough, securing Blockchain from disruption even further. This fixed yet transparent network of transactions has forced modern technology a great leap forward.
However, Blockchain isn’t just used to transfer money with bitcoin, it could also potentially be used for the transfer of political documents, critical information, amongst many other forms of information. In the future, not only could Blockchain conduct secure transactions, but it could also create companies run by algorithms, safer self-driving cars, and protect our identities with its anonymity. A revolutionary currency, paired with an equally innovative system of exchange is most definitely in the process of transforming the future as we know it.
By Kristen Fu
High school students have increasingly neglected using the lockers. Most students carry their backpack along with all their school materials around with them, undermining the need for lockers. While some students still use their lockers for sports and other activities, the practicality of lockers has greatly decreased. Due to this drop in locker usage, the administration has toyed with the idea of changing the current lockers with electronic lockers that require passcodes in order to be opened.
The current lockers are individually designated for each student. This means that each student has a single locker that only they have the password to. However, many students do not use their lockers. This is because the lockers are often located in places that are far from the students’ classes. It also requires time to go back and forth between lockers and classes, something that students are often too lazy to do.
Because of the inconvenience of the current lockers, the administration has proposed changing them into electronic lockers. These lockers will be free for anyone to use, anywhere and anytime. The students simply have to put their items in, enter a passcode of their choosing, and close the locker. When they decide to take their items out, the students simply have to enter their passcode and take their items out. This will supposedly allow the lockers to be more convenient and accessible for students by allowing them to use any locker.
The proposed change for the lockers has sparked conversation amongst high school students. Supporters of the change has claimed that since most students don’t use their lockers regularly, it would be more convenient if all the lockers were open to students. Michelle Zhou, a junior, stated that “It’s a good thing because I know most people don’t use their lockers anyway. In the winter, we have coats that we don’t want to carry around, so if the lockers were temporary, it would be more convenient.” This was a common argument that was echoed amongst many students.
Other people, however, were more hesitant to accept the change or ambivalent to the issue altogether. Some students were concerned about the size of the electronic lockers. Sonia Loo commented that “the electronic lockers seem significantly smaller than the original ones, so that seems kind of inconvenient or practical for people.” Other students enjoyed having their own individual lockers to use as a separate space for their personal items. Hanwen Cao commented, “I don’t support it. I like my locker.” In the junior class chat, many people also raised the idea of allowing students to have a choice between a normal locker and an electronic one. Most students appear to be reluctant to provide their full support for this plan.
Although the proposal to change the lockers is still not set, the idea has already sparked debates on the feasibility and effectiveness of this decision. As yet another change made by the administration, students have not been shy to debate the merits and shortcomings of this plan. Ultimately, the proposal to implement electronic lockers may stay just that: an idea.
By Colin Jun
Pyeongchang, Korea is the host city for the twenty-third winter Olympic games. It is the second time Korea is hosting the Olympic Games since 1988 Seoul Olympics. The Olympics will start on February 9th with the Opening Ceremony and last 17 days until February 25th. 2952 athletes from 92 different countries, including North Korea, are expected to participate in the Olympics. Although the Winter Olympics is one of the most significant events of this year, it is undeniable that many people in and out of our school do not have much information about it - of course, Chinese New Year is an even more important event than the Olympics in China. So today, I would like to introduce several points that you need to know about the Olympics.
Talking about the Olympics without mentioning the Mascots is difficult. For Pyeongchang, there is one mascot for each Olympic games and Paralympic games. The Pyeongchang Olympics games mascot, Soohorang, is inspired by one of the famous guardian animals in Korea, the white tiger, which often appears as the symbol of braveness and protection in traditional Korean stories. The Pyeongchang Paralympics games mascot, Bandabi, is inspired by the Asian Black Bear. Bandabi represents the bravery and strong will of the Korean people and athletes.
Furthermore, Pyeongchang was able to host the Winter Olympics by applying as the Olympic candidate for three times in a row (almost twelve years!). Pyeongchang prepared to host the Winter Olympics since 2003; however, 2010 Winter Olympics was given to Vancouver, Canada and 2014 Winter Olympics was given to Sochi, Russia. As Pyeongchang continues to fail to host the winter Olympics, the skepticism towards “Organizing the committee of Pyeongchang Winter Olympics” increased. In 2010, defeating all the skepticism towards the Olympics, Pyeongchang finally could host the Winter Olympics.
The most controversial point of the Olympics is the Korean National Team - more specifically, “a single South and North Korea team.” Since 2013, when the host city of the 2018 Olympics was declared, the South Korean government suggested to the North to organize a single team for the Olympics. North Korea did not respond to the idea for a long time - some people even anticipated North Korea would not participate in Olympics (Park). In January 1st, through the New Year Message by Kim Jung Un, North Korea conveyed their interest of participating in the Olympics and discussing the South-North Korea Single Team. The discussion between the South and the North resulted in a decision to organize a single team for Women’s Ice Hockey and to do the joint parade in the Opening Ceremony under the Unification Flag (called Han-Ban-Do Ki).
The interesting point is the response of Korean citizens to the joint team and parade. In the past, most of the citizens supported the joint squad or joint march; however, in Pyeongchang 2018, the response of citizens is different than before. According to the research done by Korea Research in January, 63.3% of the people supported the joint parade between North and South Korea. The most controversial points were the Ice Hockey joint team (58.7% disagreed) and the use of the Unification flag for a joint parade (47.4% opposed). For the ice hockey joint team, many citizens are sensitive about providing special favor to the North Korean athletes, since it may appear as a notion ignoring the effort of South Korean athletes and violating the principle of equality - everyone should have the same opportunity in the same condition. For using the Unification flag in Opening Ceremony, the opposing group argues the South Korean team should use the South Korean flag in the Opening Ceremony as the host country of the Olympics. Nevertheless, many people agree that the North and South Korea joint team will contribute to the improvement in the relationship between South and North Korea and hope the joint team and joint parade can be the starting point for the reunification.
Of course, the most exciting part of the Olympics is the Games played by the athletes who have been prepared for this Olympics for a long time! Hence, pay attention and stay tuned to the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics!
Colin Jun is both a writer for Pudong Press and an official youth ambassador for the South Korean 2018 Winter Olympic Games.
By Grace Deng
On Friday, January 26, students at both Shanghai American School Pudong and Puxi were treated to a snow day. The announcement of a day off for SAS Pudong students was posted around 10:30 PM by principal Dr. Lee. It cited “unsafe weather conditions during the morning commute” as the reason school was cancelled. Many students were awake, eagerly hoping for a day off.
All activities were cancelled at SAS Pudong except for a Robotics tournament on Friday.
Students were jubilant, many claiming that it was “the spoons.” As senior Josh Li explained in his class chat, “they say if you lick a spoon and put it under your pillow it’ll snow the next day.” The superstition quickly spread from class chat to class chat. Dozens of students from freshman year to senior year licked spoons and placed them under their pillows—one junior student humorously placed a ladle under their pillow, hoping a larger spoon would result in a larger chance of success, while another student had their poodle lick a spoon.
Dr. Lee’s announcement was the most liked post on SAS’ Schoology of all time, with Dr. Lee joking that at “288 “likes” and counting, my Schoology post announcing Friday’s snow day is the most popular thing I have ever done on social media.”
Students were quick to thank Dr. Lee for the snow day, with several writing emails to express gratitude and appreciation for the day off.
Junior year was particularly excited over the snow day, and plans for a grade-wide snowball fight in the Jinqiao area on Friday were quickly finalized the night before. At the snowball fight, students took the time to build a snowman in honor of Dr. Lee.
As one student joked, “I’ve never seen so many people care so much before.”
By Colin Jun
The CISSMUN IX Conference was held in Concordia International School Shanghai (CISS) from January 19th to January 21st. Under the theme of “A Place to Stand,” students from various international schools around the world discussed more than fifty topics in sixteen committees. Most parts of the conference procedure are no different than the CISSMUN X conference - Lobbying, Merging, Formal Debate and the CISS Magazine - Vigil. Some unique features made the CISSMUN IX conference different from past CISSMUN conferences and other MUN conferences.
1. GINAsia 2018
While the CISSMUN IX conference was happening in most of the high school building of
CISS, another side of the school - middle school and elementary school - was filled with the participants for GIN Asia (Global Issue Network Asia) 2018. GIN conference has several similarities with MUN conference - by the fact that they both deal with the international issues (events) and require the collaboration between the students from around the world. However, GINAsia takes a different approach than CISSMUN to solve the problems. For every issue, GINAsia serves as the platform which schools and students can participate the workshops about the specific global issues or the projects and discuss. Compared to CISSMUN, GINAsia workshops include more interactive activities (simulations or games) and encourages informal discussion for the topic.
2. Keynote Speakers
By GINAsia 2018, six keynote speakers made presentation related to global issues. Melati and Isabel Wijsen, two teenage environmentalists and activists, made a presentation about their past projects such as “Bye Bye Plastic Bali” and “Beach Clean Up Event” as well as their school “Green School Bali.” Kim Phuc, the most famous survivor of Vietnamese War for her picture, made a beautiful presentation about her life as the survivor of the war and the famous photo taken during the war. In her speech, she asked the students to the bright side of the story - her story of hope and forgiving - when they ever look at that picture again. On the second day, Ishmael Beah, a Sierra Leone-born human activist, and Peter Dalglish, a humanitarian, made the speech about their lives and their perspective towards the global issues.
3. CISSGIN APP
One of the most praised features of CISSMUN IX and GINAsia 2018 was the CISSGIN App that is introduced. Through the CISSGIN App, the students were able to quickly check the schedule of the conference, necessary information such as rules of procedure, contact information, campus map and brief information about the keynote speakers. Many students complimented the broad range of information the app covers.
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.”