Humanities Immersion, Hong Kong
A total of 22 Y4 and Y5 students and 3 teachers went for a Geography fieldtrip to Hong Kong. The purpose of this trip was to provide students a geographical perspective of how certain phenomena such as housing and geology, that many locals and visitors take for granted, may look different in the eyes of an observer. The trip also enabled students to not only visit places of geographical interest but also to better study the Hong Kong education system as well as to expose the students to the realities of having a career in a large transnational company (TNC).
In terms of geographical studies, the students were given a series of tasks to investigate, complete, analyse and provide recommendations during the course of the trip. These tasks were demanding, exhaustive but were enriching nonetheless. These tasks included examining the geological history of Hong Kong, accounting for the physical landforms that developed here, solving the housing issue within Hong Kong, urban landuse within the region and how the region is able to maintain its cultural heritage. With these tasks in mind, the students visited the Geological Museum and Lions Education Centre to develop greater insights into the geological history of HK, the Sai Kung Geopark area to study landforms associated with this extinct volcano, the Urban Renewal Centre to look into how town planners intended to re-develop and gentrify Hong Kong as well as a visit to an urban renewal site in Wan Chai to assess the effectiveness of the urban renewal programme. Students also had to study the urban landuse of the Kowloon area by conducting urban transect studies along a stretch of Nathan Road and conducted face-to-face interviews with visitors and employees working in businesses along Nathan Road and Hong Kong Disneyland. At Ngong Ping, students were required to provide the geographical perspectives of how rivers and landforms develop within that region and how it had moulded the current landscape. Students would thus collect data, analyse the content collected and thereafter present their findings to each other and the teachers each night. Once refined, the students will prepare their group reports.
Other than geographical studies, students were also given opportunities to interact with local students and employees from Transnational companies. They were able to visit Hong Kong University and attended a lecture by a geologist professor, interacted with students from the Hong Kong College of Technology where they were given a college-wide tour and engaged in some games and ice-breakers with these hospitable students. Our students were also involved in the Disney Ambassador programme where they learnt about the inner workings of the Disney Group in Hong Kong and were provided access into the lives of cast members of the company as they spent half a day following these cast members around the park who explained the requirements of their jobs, why they chose to work for the TNC and the basic attitudes and aptitudes required to work in this company.
The trip was certainly an enriching experience for the participants and provided an invaluable learning opportunity for us.