Student voice 14 Aug 2020

Shunsho's CIS story

By CIS Communications
Photograph by CIS Communications & Shunsho H

After 7 years at CIS, Shunsho H is starting a new chapter in his life. If you’ve been at Lakeside for a while, you might recognise Shunsho as he is a familiar face on campus. A bubbly grade 10 student, who’s always ready to lend a hand, Shunsho was an active participant in a wide range of school activities. He was particularly interested in anything arts related. From school theatre productions to assisting behind the scenes in student-led events like TedxCanadianInt’lSchool, you could count on Shunsho to get the job done. 

Ms Shanhong Hughes, primary music teacher, couldn’t agree more. She said, “Shunsho was very helpful and creative, always cheerful, in spite of the pressure. He was also very supportive of our younger students.”

A love for trying new things
Although Shunsho attended nursery back when CIS was still at the old Toh Tuck campus, his CIS story really began when he returned to CIS (and grade 4) in 2013. His love of singing and acting was evident - you would often see him in roles in school theatre productions like “Once on this island” and “Seussical”. Shunsho said, “Beauty and the Beast” was my first theatre experience. I had such an amazing time because I enjoy performing on the stage.” 

Aside from acting and singing, Shunsho was active in many other aspects of school life as well. For example, he took several online courses on game design and programming in grade 8 during Code Week. During Singapore’s COVID-19 circuit breaker, he rallied his fellow choir members and friends from all over the world to create music videos as his way to motivate the CIS community during a difficult time. Outside of school, Shunsho didn’t rest on his laurels either. He successfully auditioned as a TV host for Yolo Pronto - an educational tv programme on Okto that covered science, sports, education, and creativity through fun and informative segments.

Ms Ann Zellhoefer, MYP/DP Music Instructor and Arts Activities Coordinator, said: “Shunsho is creative, talented, and dynamic! He leads with his heart, is honest, and truly gives his full expression to positively make a difference in the lives of others.”  

A balance between passion and school
With so much going on in his life, how did Shunsho manage to juggle his schoolwork and extracurricular activities? “I couldn’t have done it without my teachers’ support. I could always go to them for help and ask them questions when needed. 

The extracurricular activities I participated in were always ones that interested me, so I was motivated to keep a balance between leisure and study. I also think that planning my tasks ahead of time really helped me. For instance, I had to work on my P2 (Personal Project) while we were rehearsing for ‘Once on this island’. I would use free time, when I wasn’t working on a scene to study and made sure to manage my stress levels. This was hard to do during the recent circuit breaker because I couldn’t go out to meet my friends. But, I was lucky enough to go out to walk or grocery shop sometimes. I think it’s important for students to balance their school work and not forget to enjoy life at the same time.” 

An amazing journey
For Shunsho, the past 7 years at CIS have been an amazing journey. He not only explored his passion, he discovered new ones. He also thinks he is better prepared for university as “studying at an IB (International Baccalaureate) school like CIS gives me the opportunity to explore topics in-depth to gain a deeper understanding. This enables us to think critically, which I think will be important in university and life in general”.

Before signing off, Shunsho wanted to thank his teachers: Ms Renee Bellavance, Mr Chris Lee, Ms Sun Kim, Ms Glenda Ray, Mr David Kys, Ms Erin O'rourke, Ms Susan Somers, Ms Lauren McGinty, Ms Chan Gao, Ms Grace Nah, Ms Shanhong Hughes, Ms Julie Gouin, Ms Arianna Pozzuoli, and Ms Ann Zellhoefer for their support.

Owning the future
So what are Shunsho’s future plans? He will be joining his brother Kensho Kensho (Class of 2016 and studying at the University of Toronto) in Canada. “I will continue to pursue my passions in acting and theatre as I finish up my Diploma  Programme in grades 11 and 12 as well as in university,” Shunsho told us with his trademark grin.  

Thank you Shunsho. We’re sad to see you go, but we wish you all the best in your future endeavours! Don’t forget the memories you’ve made with us at CIS! 

Note: These photos were taken pre-COVID, when masks and social distancing were not required.