latest updates

past issues

things to do

about us


odds and ends


t r i b u n e . o n l i n e
the students' voice


Angels and Mortals by Charissa Lu

Perhaps a ploy to make the lower secondary students check their class trays more often. Maybe an effective way of lifting the secondary two students' esteem (fancy being called an angel). Or it's to test the secondary ones' sleuthing skills to solve the Mystery of Who Their Angel Is. Nonetheless, the most accepted reason for it is to let the secondary ones to personally bond with the school. Through the mortals' letters to their angels, one can glimpse into their world and what they think of RGS. Complaints about homework, the latest trends, tales of why-the-teacher-made-the-class-laughˇ­ the mortals bind with their angels in simple everyday happenings.

Says mortal Yanmin, "I used to write weekly to my angel. She is really nice. She once gave me a box of chocolates and a cuddly cushion. I look forward to being an angel next year. This system is good: it helps the sec ones feel at home." She adds with a cheeky smile, "Hopefully, I'll be as nice to my mortal as my angel is to me now."

However, this sweet relationship between mortal and angel does not last long. After a term or two, the excitement wears off. In the first term, everyone checked the class tray at least three times a day. They were rewarded with piles of angel and mortal mail, occasionally a nice present from some nice correspondent. By the third term, nobody bothers to check the class trays so often. What would more likely appear in their class tray are discouraging piles of homework to be given out, overdue book reminder slips and school notices. By the time the mortals 'die and go to heaven' to be angels, the whole system is totally forgotten. Few relationships manage to even survive a year. Such is the short but sweet angel-mortal relationship.

Why the sudden decrease in interest? Well, the mortals have almost all found out who their angels are. So they don't see the point of writing anymore when they can walk down the corridor and say hello to their angel anytime they want. I have to admit I'm one of those whose interest burns out by the second semester. I do not write my weekly letters anymore. Instead, a monthly email report is sent. I doubt if I can keep it up much longer.

I think the angel-mortal system is a fun way to relate to the seniors and a good orientation tool. I would encourage it to be continued. However, the mortals should ensure that they do not get distracted from schoolwork with writing. I have encountered incidents where peers write excessively often and at the wrong times, for example, during class. As long as self-discipline is practiced, the system will be immensely encouraging and helpful for the secondary ones.

Mortally yours, Charissa 113