Day 4 - Nguyen Du Secondary school

Nguyen Du Secondary School

Named after Nguyễn Du, seventh child of Nguyễn Nghiễm ,a former prime minister under the Lê Dynasty. Nguyen Du is a celebrated Vietnamese poet who is known for the famous poem called “The Tale of Kieu”, which was based on an earlier Chinese work known as Kim Vân Kiều and was originally titled Đoạn Trường Tân Thanh.
The school has a long history starting from the 1970s. The school has over 2000 students and 42 classes with around 50 students each. The school was well facilitated with 2 science labs, 2 computer labs, large courtyard where students play during their spare time and their physical education lessons. Classrooms also have blackboards which teachers use to teach.

  • What school are we from?
  • When was our date of Independence?
  • What does starts on the Singapore flag stand for?
  • Who's the prime minister who officially opened VSIP (vietnam singapore industrial park) together with Vietnam?


  1. Well today I met many local students ,they all performed really well , even if a few of them were out of beat, but who am I to judge when we didn't do well either. Their presenters were really enthusiastic compared to Kenneth and Max.They also had three performances while we only had one .Whats more ,some of us even laid on the table and showed no respect at all , which we got lectured by Mr Yeo when we got back on the bus.After the performances , we played traditional games with the local students , however I realised that most of the games they taught us were similar or not completely the same , just different names . Its just like everything else in the world same thing different perspectives.We had lots of fun and made lots of friends ,and exchanged contacts.And to finish the event , we took a group photo with the Vietnam students.I am pretty sure the Vietnam students are much more well mannered compared to us.

  2. When we reached the school, i felt welcomed.They clapped at us when we entered the school gate. i felt welcomed and felt like at home.They presented with us quality performances with songs, magic tricks and dances.We felt bad as we only practiced for 1 performance.Luckily, Dawn and Zhong Han was able to think ahead i helped to add another performance for us.They do have a good command of English so we did not have any difficulties communicating with each other. The games had certainly brought joy to both us and them. Gifts were exchanged and I managed to make some friends.

  3. 1)Nguyen Du Junior High
    ­ We took a long walk to the school and it made me think of how hard the students had to work
    to go to the school in the morning. When we went into the school, the students clapped for us
    and formed a line to welcome us. They were all smiles when we arrived. The placing of the
    school was weird as it was in the middle of all the shops. The place was built to celebrate 1000
    years of Hanoi. The school had a very big compound. The school had a presentation slide to tell
    us about their school. My friend Kenneth and I had to do an overnight slide for the school. It was
    not up to our standard as I myself needed 2 weeks to do just a small presentation. The school
    had quite good technology for a Junior School. They had a number of performances and they
    were all performed well. Our group, however only prepared one performance and it was not good
    compared to theirs. We felt a little bad because even though we prepared it was still not up to
    standard. We needed to have a second performance so we had a last minute one. We then
    went to exchange gifts and they were eager to meet us. We then went to play games with them
    and socialised with them. They were fun to play with and interesting. Their english was very good
    as well. We exchanged contacts and took photos with the students there. we had a lot of fun.
    We were sad to leave the school.

  4. We woke up at 6am so that we were able to reach the school on time.We were dropped off by the bus at the water puppet theater after breakfast and walked to he Nguyen Du High School.Upon arrival,we were greeted with a crowd which made all of us feel very awkward.We then went to their hall to watch the performances of theirs,but certain people were lying on the table,which caused us to be scolded after the whole thing.They had prepared a lot of performances,and had prepared for a long time for these,but compared to us who only prepared one performance,I felt that not only we prepared only one performance,but we also didn’t practice much.I think we should have spent a longer time practicing and taken this more seriously.Though I think we did decently,I do not think we met what standards they set for us.After our performance,out senior,Loo Zhong Han,
    volunteered to play the guitar and our lead singer,Dawn,had volunteered to sing.It was completely impromptu.Though there were a bit of mishaps at the start,they still managed to have another performance,making us not feel so bad for having only one performance.I really appreciate them for that,but I feel that I could have done something to help.After that we went to play with them traditional game.I do not know much about what happened as I was doing sports with the students instead.We lost every game we played as we had no teamwork.

  5. We had a warm welcome to their school, students were all clapping at us, we were like stars. They were very friendly and nice. Their presentation was very good and whats more English is not the forte, and yet I feel that they did so much better. They took so much time to practice for their 5 performances, just for this day, and on the other hand, we merely spent one week to practice for a song. I feel like we did not do enough for them. We were also very rude, example some of us were talking and not paying attention to their performances, some of us lay of heads down to sleep while they were presenting. Even though we might have been listening, but our posture and our act portrays our attitude. We then shared our nation’s traditional games. I managed to play handball with them. I had a lot of fun. They would welcome us to Vietnam. I think that we should have done better and should practice longer. We have the potential to do better and we should do better.

  6. We went Nguyen Du Junior High by foot, we were greeted with a applause from the students in the school, the school is kinda huge.Kenneth and Max did the presentations Slides on our school. We then got to see 5 performances, that were very good.We only had one but it was not done well.We then went around the school to see what they do in the classrooms.We then went to play games and I went to play Handball where we were beaten really bad. We continued to play Soccer were it was a draw. We took pictures with the students and then left, I have to admit I was kinda sad

  7. Right after breakfast, we set off to where we had alighted several times during the trip, the entrance to the Water Puppet Show. We had to walk down to the Nguyen Du Junior High School. This was because of the one way and really packed traffic that did not even show mercy for a bus to enter. And here the adventure of the day starts.
    Ordered to move in a single file, we skimmed through close calls and numerous honks from the various motorcycles and taxicabs which constantly reminded us of how vicious the traffic in Hanoi is like. Finally, we reached the Nguyen Du Junior High School. They treated us like celebrities, cheering and clapping for us. As we ascended the floors to their Auditorium, we passed by multiple classes which all stared at us, either questioning or smiling.
    In the Auditorium, we first got a welcome speech from one of the several vice-principals of Nguyen Du Junior High School. It was translated by their Head of English Department phrase by phrase, making me a little guilty not to have brushed up or learnt more Vietnamese beforehand. Then, we are explained the current situation of why the principal and other vice-principals were not here, where the principal was busy and could not make it in time and where the vice-principals had to attend an important meeting.
    Now came the fun part. They had presented to us a powerpoint slide to show us and tell us more about the school and it’s history, about how Nguyen Du was the name of a smart man and how they participate in outdoor activities. And right after this, it was my time to shine. I had to present to the Nguyen Du Junior High School students about SST and it’s specialities. I stuttered quite a bit as I didn’t get a chance to practice often. There’s always a lot to improve on I guess.
    From here, they performed multiple great performances for us, which were very obviously well practiced compared to our performances. The first was a song by Rihanna, ‘Diamond’ which were sung by a group of 6 students. Afterwards there was a dance performance, followed by another trio dance, both popular pop songs. After this was a guitar solo of the song ‘Whistle’ by Flo Rida, and a solo dance after this which I sadly had to miss as I had to visit the washroom. Ending off their performances was another song by the same group that sang for us at the start.
    It’s our spotlight now! We were hinted to perform for them with the line “Do you have anything to perform for us?” And we started our performance of ‘Hey Soul Sister’, a performance only with 3 rehearsal sessions. It went mostly well. They later asked for more, which we had to give it our most power vocalist and our best confident guitar player, Dawn and Zhong Han to perform ‘Titanium’ for them.
    And now, we take a group picture, followed by a gift exchanging session. After which, the students were to pair up with one of us to have a tour around the school. I just sat there and a female student came up to me, saying my presentation was great. Sadly, I didn’t ask for her name. However, I learnt that she was 13-years-old as well when she asked me about my age. Then we went upstairs and went down floor by floor till me reached their yard, where we held activities to bond.
    As the bonding sessions, we had 2 games of handball, which we lost to them around two-thirds of their score. It was really fun to see their teamwork and how much fun they had playing around with us. Between the 2 halves though... their coach allowed us to enter their ‘gym’ like room which had 2 punching bags and several weights in there. The other people however played other games they had such as A-E-I-O-U but in the form of 1-2-3. Some people were also sharing with them our traditional games and we were all really having fun.
    This was a really fun and interesting experience, really showing me how much more competitive I should be in my studies and how much more teamwork and effort I should put into my group work and play.

  8. I think that we have disappointed the Vietnamese students even though they had performed so well to us and we performed badly with people not singing or dancing. Some of us also put their heads on the table which meant that we were not interested at all. I wish that they would at least count the thought instead of the quality.

  9. Compared to their performance, we have disappointed ourselves. Their performed both dancing and singing. Furthermore, they sang in english. There were a lot of room for improvements.But at least most of us tried and it is the thought that counts.

    During the games played with them, one of which is soccer, I forgot that it was not the soft grass that I used to play with and slide to get the ball and ended up with a wound and a black spot on my pants. This has taught me to be more adaptive to the surroundings.

  10. Even though we were quite disappointed at ourselves when we found out their school performed a lot of shows. However, what matters is that we tried our best to present our shows and managed to make one up on the spot.

    The sport games were great. Even though we lost, we managed to make good friends through sportsmanship and strengthened our friendship through the exchange of traditional games with each other. We had a great time and really enjoyed ourselves.

  11. When we arrived, they clapped loudly for us and welcomed us enthusiastically. I felt very welcomed. The vietnamese students prepared a lot of performances while we only had one performance. Some of us put their heads on the table which showed disrespect to the students who were on stage performing. Gifts were exchanged after the performance and the students were all very warm hearted and volunteered to show us around the school. Their english was good so we did not have difficulties communicating. We also shared our traditional games and played together. It was sad when we had to leave the school.

  12. We are instructed to wake up at 6 AM and we have breakfast till 7am . we alighted at the water puppet theatre and walked to Nguyen Du Junior High School.All of us have to walk in single file and we crossed several roads. Once we entered the gate , the students waited for us and cheered for us. I felt scared and shy so hide to the back. We walked into the school and up to the hall. We sat down and there were some presentations and performance. During the performance, I laid my head on the table. After being scolded, I realised what I had done was terrible and wrong. After that, it's our turn to perform. We went onto the stage and performed. Although it might not be better but i felt that we had put in our effort and I think they enjoyed our performance. After the performance , they wanted more , so Zhong Han , Dawn and Jeron went and perform. I felt that they are very brave to do so. Than it's gift exchange. As I was shy, I randomly gave out my gifts. Than we went to play traditional games. We had so much fun but time travel so quickly when you having fun. After the games we took a photo and exchanged information. I felt sad that it ended so fast. After that we went back to the hotel and had an 1 hr rest.

  13. When we arrived at the school, I saw the students lined up opposite each other, each line in order. When we walked into the school in two lines, the students cheered for us as they welcomed us into the school. I felt that the Vietnamese students treated us like very important people. When we went into the hall, the principal officially welcomed us into the school as she made her opening speech. Mr Yeo also did a speech too. After that, the students prepared for us a line of performances and I realised that they actually prepared more than us, which made me ashamed. The performances performed by the Vietnamese students was very well done. After them, we performed. Even though our performance was not as good as the students, I think we still tried our best and I was quite glad as I did not see anyone backing out at the last minute, which I think it was good. After that, we went to interact with the students by exchanging gifts and they brought us around the school. We played each others traditional games, took photographs together and added each other on social networking platforms. I think it was one of the most memorable memories I had in Vietnam as this activity helped me to understand more of what other people do in other schools in other countries.

  14. It was the highlight of the trip, exchanging cultures between the two schools. The welcome by the students of Nguyen Du is very welcoming as they greeted us warmly. It was a awesome experience though, abit awkward. The performances are just spectacular, well, our performance was no match to theirs. Their great effort and handwork just easily made ours look just so plain. I really would like to urge the next years to put in mind and thought for a better performance and more time to practise weeks before the day itself.
    Due to our little performance, Zhong Han bravely took up the challenge to do an on the spot performance, which really helped us abit more. Through difficulties he eventually got through it.
    I would say that the impression some of my friends brought to the students was bad, talking to each other and such, no respect for the students' performance. I would say that this would be a learning point for them.
    Being a photographer and videographer, it was abit hard and fun since i get to capture the great moments my friends had with the students. Though i never got to make a friend from another country, the experience it gave was good. Seeing the eagerness and liveliness of the students playing shows the kind and open heart of the vietnamese.

  15. On 30th October, we went to the Nguyen Du High School. We alighted at the water puppet theatre and walked all the way to the high school. As we entered the school, the students lined up for us and clapped to welcome us. They had huge grins on their faces. When we entered the hall the students were already there. The vice-principals gave us a welcome speech as the principal was ill. Then, Kenneth and Max came up with a powerpoint presentation to introduce our school to them. Though Kenneth stumbled over his words a few times, I think that he and Max did pretty well. After that, we got to see their performances. They sang a few pop songs and performed a few impressive magic tricks for us. They also danced to the popular korean pop songs like 'Growl' and 'I got a boy'. Being a k-pop fan, I was very excited and sang along to the songs. To end their performances, a student sang along to the guitar version of 'Whistle'. I was very impressed by the performances. Then, it was time for our performance. When we started singing Hey Soul Sister, we were all nervous and excited. In the middle of the song, the students started clapping and singing along. I was very thankful to them for encouraging us. I think that our performance could have been better and I wished that we had more time to rehearse. However, they students wanted more from us and Zhong Han had to borrow a guitar and play the song 'Titanium' while Dawn sang along. I was relieved that they were able to come up with a solution however I think we should have prepared more. I also admire Zhong Han for volunteering to play the guitar. We could tell he was under a lot of pressure and we also sang along. We started to exchange gifts and we received a beautiful piece of woven art from the school. Later, the students guided us around the school and I saw that they had more people in a class then our school. They also did not have air conditioners in the classroom. This reminded me of how privileged we were to study in Singapore. I also made a lot of new friends there. I was surprised at how good their english was. At the courtyard, We played a game of handball against the students from the school. I stood by and watched them play. Our team was no match for their school. We exchanged traditional games. I enjoyed a game where a person would stand at the end of the field and when he looked no one could move but when he didn’t you had to try to tap him. Later when we had to leave, we felt very sad and exchanged telephone numbers and facebook names. Everyone was filled with mixed feelings. We were happy we found such great friends. It was really a memorable experience.

  16. We went to one of the most prestigious junior high schools in Hanoi, the Nguyen Du Junior High School. That day was a big day for all of us, and it was a day that I was preparing for the most. The day that we were going to perform Hey Soul Sister by Train. It was a pressure on me for the past few days as I was the one who came up with this idea and took quite a lot of initiative to prepare all of us for this song. I was pretty nervous about it at first, as I was the only Show Choir member out of all the people in the trip to Hanoi. For the past few days I have been conducting rehearsals and they were quite good actually. Honest. When we entered the Nguyen Du Junior High School, we were warmly welcomed by the students, clapping with those friendly warm smiles on their faces. I was charmed by their faces, and felt quite awkward. We took the stairs up to their hall and took our seats. The principal welcomed us with a welcome speech and Mr Yeo came in to give a short and quick speech too. There were 6 performances lined up for us by the Hanoi students. That included singing of American Pop songs like Diamonds by Rihanna, Whistle by Flo Rida (with guitar), and Try by Pink; dances to Kpop songs like I Got A Boy by SNSD, Growl by EXO, and another solo belly dance. I was impressed by their confidence. They were good performances, not only in their ability, but in stage-wise, stage presence. That is one thing I could take away as a performer. 6 performances, to one partially prepared performance. I was very nervous. We only prepared one! It was our turn already. I braved up and walked with the rest up the stage. I took the mike as the music started playing. I calmed myself and gave it all. Seeing the Hanoi students giving us confidence by clapping to the song, I smiled through the rest of the performance. After the performance, we bowed. Unexpectedly yet expectedly, I heard the principal clapping loudly, shouting “Another performance! Another performance!” At that point of time, Zhong Han, our GCP leader lightly tapped me and told me that he would perform another song with the guitar. PHEW. I immediately spoke into the mike, “This tall guy over here would perform a song for us on the guitar!” Little did I know that what Zhong Han meant was both of us do a song together. That means I sing and he plays the accompaniment. We were up on the stage for about 2 minutes or so, deciding on what song to do. Felt quite bad for keeping them waiting. In the end we finalized the song and did Titanium. There were flaws here and there and I was quite nervous, resulting in the low volume of my voice. We only did until the end of the chorus when Zhong Han left me hanging on my note. There were screams and claps. At that moment we didn’t know whether to continue or not. So we just stopped and took a bow and left the stage. When it was time to exchange gifts, in a few seconds I was surrounded by Hanoi girls. They gave me souvenirs and praised my singing. I thanked them profusely. There was this girl, whose name I found out later was Ngoc, who told me that her friends said that we looked alike. Not only looks, but we sounded alike too! I found my 'long lost sister'! Twins, we were called. I was delighted to meet her and her clique (I supposed). She dragged me along to play games with her. Her friends who I met were friendly and fun to be with. Soon, we had to leave. I quickly passed around my notebook for them to write down their Facebook accounts so that I can add them when I return to Singapore. I took another group photo together, then shouted and waved goodbye to each other. I was happy and grateful to meet them, but upset to leave the school so soon. Although we only met for a few hours, we bonded and became from a stranger, to good friends. I was glad to have treasured that few hours. I will never forget the times we all had together, laughing and playing together.

  17. When we first step into the gates of the school, we were treated like VIPs. The Grade 8 students were standing in two lanes clapping while we enter the School Gates. We really felt Happy as we feel the Warmth of the School at that point of time. When we all gathered in the Hall, it was time for the Vice Principal's Speech. After the Speech, it was the time where we all exchanged information about both schools. After which was the Exchange of Performances. Ngyuen Du Junior High School performed about 5 Performances which includes Singing and Dancing. When it was our turn to perform, we got up from our seats and left for the Stage. We sang Hey Soul Sister by Train like what we did during the Practices. I felt that we did try to do our best, but not everyone. After finishing the song, we wanted to perform another performance for the students as they performed around 5 performances while we only performed 1. Zhong Han then decided to play the guitar while Dawn sings along. They decided to Play Titanium and it did not go as well as expected, but they did try their best to put on a good show. It then followed by the Exchange of gifts. After that, students from Ngyuen Du Junior High School brought us around the school. After touring about the school, it was time for us to exchange the games we play locally. One game that I learnt that both countries play was the Chaptik. There was another game that was quite similar to the game we usually play called 'A, E, I, O, U', but in Vietnam they played it the same way but its called '1, 2, 3' and it had a different ending which they had to hold one another hand and everyone should run behind the line when the song has been sung. The looser is the one who got caught by the catcher. After all the games exchange, we exchange our contact details and Facebook names and we took some pictures too. After that, we baed farewell to each other before we left the school.