Visit our newly-launched Online Radio Station
The “Little Red House” (“LRH,小红屋”) is a radio station sited at the canteen. Since its installation in 2019, it has been a popular
gathering point for the wider student body where they watch their peers and teachers in action, dishing out current affair news, cultural stories and the broadcasting of student-composed music. The objective of LRH is to nurture critical thinkers who exude confidence and can communicate well. One unique feature of LRH is the active promotion of student’s voice where we give our students a platform to communicate matters that matters to them and society-at-large .In the process, students are able to apply skills that they have learnt such as radio-Djing, information gathering, interview, reporting skills, journalistic writing and oralcy skills. Through their voices, students can become a “force for good” and contribute towards the building of a nation that is compassionate, caring and forward-looking.
The project started off as a pilot project under the Mother Tongue department where teachers wanted to advocate student advocacy. In our curriculum, we have taught our students bags of skills and tricks (5W1H, express their opinions and feelings, good vocabularies practice etc.) in oral fluency yet they seem to have difficulty pulling these skills together to communicate their thoughts effectively to their peers. The radio broadcasting station provides an innovative and real-world platform for students’ to use the language more often than before. Through this interactive platform, the learning and the use of languages come alive.
Prior to launching the LRH Programme, teachers embrace a simple approach of “Experience-Design-Impact” (Figure 1) where they
first experienced for themselves what broadcasting was like. They wrote their own scripts and played them on air. With the experiences and insights gained, they created a “mini curriculum” and taught it to a small group of pupils and allowing them the space to experiment and make mistakes. In the process, the pupils learnt something useful and they were able to put to good use their newly acquired skills at the broadcast station.
The team also adopted the Torrance Incubation Model (TIM) by Torrance and
Safter(1990) would provide the appropriate framework for designing the teaching and learning environment as it is premised upon a strong belief in engaging the whole self(both the affective and cognitive domains) in the process of learning. The TIM is premised on Torrance’s belief that “people prefer to learn creatively-by exploring, questioning, experimenting, rearranging things and then thinking about it- “incubating”. (Torrance & Safter, 1990, pg 13). The learning process according to TIM is about self-discovery and the construction of personal meaning.
The LRH team was kick-started by the Mother Tongue Department in the school. During this time, the team has also extended our invitation to interested subject teachers who would like to join the broadcast. As part of the effort to bring in different voices during the beginning stages, we roped in different subject teachers for the recording of an excerpt from “Journey to the West”. The broadcast was well- received by students and teachers alike. Many expressed interest in taking part in such recordings. This opportunity also offered other subject teachers an insight to the LRH programme, which they will eventually all be on-board.
As we aimed to train students to be a school journalist, one important aspect is to make them aware of current affairs and encouraged them to share about their opinions on societal issues. They can also interview their peers or parents for a wider opinion. This will help them in developing critical thinking. Through the LRH, we hope to provide students with a platform to share their thoughts and exchange opinions with their peers.
Currently, we have various programme at the LRH, with “school happenings” as one of the programme’s theme. Student
broadcasters would talk about topics regarding recent school happenings. For example, one of the topics discussed was on “late-coming”, where students talked about the disadvantages of coming late to school and promoted the importance of punctuality. Students’ participation on providing feedback to increase punctuality were also actively encouraged through the broadcasts.
Similarly, we also bring in topics such as current “environmental issues” to the LRH. Student broadcasters shared their views on environmental issues and preventive measures we can take to protect the environment. Through the various broadcast sessions, students were able to gain insights on how they can go about “reducing, reusing, recycling and refusing” to save the environment. The main tagline advocated by the student broadcasters was “To not be the problem, but the solution”.