College connections in diversity

03 Aug 2021

An International Languages Chapel Service and a multilingual karaoke have launched Round Square International Week at Christ’s College.

Celebrating diversity, the week features several special events.

Students cooked up a storm of fun on Tuesday as the the boys vied for foodie honours during the interhouse cooking competition. They whipped up wonderful recipes while wearing outfits representing their culture, with Harper House proving to be the best cooks.

On Monday, our College community gathered in the Chapel, with James Currie giving a reading from Genesis in French, followed by Head of Round Square Claude Tellick delivering a sermon on the merits of international language and multiculturalism. The prayers of the faithful were also read in many languages, including Samoan, German, Malay, and Spanish. The service concluded with Rev. Bosco Peters thanking students for contributing to the service acknowledging many cultures and ethnicities at College.

At lunchtime, the interhouse karaoke competition was centre stage, with James Currie – singing J'avais rêvé – taking the honours for Somes House. Second spot went to Hanson Xie and Justin Yin with Like the Wind for Richards House. Janindu Pahalawatta (Jacobs) singing Irene Josephine tied for third with Claude Tellick (Rolleston), performing Waterloo in French.

On Tuesday, the boys vied for the top foodie title during the interhouse cooking competition, whipping up a winning mix while wearing outfits representing their culture. Harper House proved to be the best cooks, followed by Rolleston and Condell’s House. After school, students, staff and members of the wider College community shared stories of their cultures, including myths, legends and children’s stories. An encore performance took place on Wednesday lunchtime.

That night an inter-school global quiz night, organised by Claude Tellick, Head of Round Square/International and his committee saw about 70 students from College, St Margaret’s College, Rangi Ruru Girls’ School, St Andrew’s College, and King’s College placed in mixed teams. Their collective knowledge was challenged by some tricky questions, Matt Cortesi expertly running the event. Claude Tellick and James Currie were the score keepers.

Thursday’s school assembly was a Round Square special, entertaining and educative, with Claude Tellick as compere, presenting prizes to the winners of the karaoke and cooking contests, and giving a voice to College students of differing cultural backgrounds. Diego Gerbich-Pais, head of Round Square at King’s College, which was visiting this week, joined in with his story of his school’s Round Square caravan which serves coffee and hot chocolate on Fridays and helps spread the Round Square messages.

Sri Lankan, Japanese, Korean, Scottish – interesting details about these nationalities and cultures were shared by students at assembly, including insights on kim chee, yum cha, and Olympics’ skateboarding.

Then at lunchtime food trucks turned the Upham Quad into a gourmet smorgasbord with great patronage from keen, hungry students. Crazy potato spirals on skewers, Japanese fried noodles, yaki soba, waffles, souvlaki, mixed berry icecream all disappeared in a flash.

Just after, the interhouse international quiz took place in the Chapman Room, 10 rounds of clues and questions testing the boys on their knowledge of countries, their leaders, national sports, capitals, and much more. The more quickly they identified the country, the more points on the board!

Round Square/International Week wrapped up on Friday with an International Kahoot, an interactive online quiz on the laptop, 30 students taking part at lunchtime. The week can be classified as an unqualified success. Everyone at College was aware it was happening and engaged on some level. Congratulations to Claude and his team!