Flags were flying around the School and boarding houses last week for Merchiston’s Annual International Week, where we celebrated the multiculturalism that we are so fortunate to have within our community.
A number of our students from around the world were eager to present their nation and culture in sectional assemblies. We learned that Mexico’s Day of the Dead is regarded as an incredibly joyous occasion, that the Great Wall of China is 21,196 km long, that the clouds on Table Mountain, Cape Town are the result of a smoking contest between a local and the devil!
International Week lunches are always a highlight and an opportunity for everyone to sample something new and different. This year the menus came from Japan, America (election day), Nepal, Spain and Lebanon celebrating the home countries of staff and pupils alike. These were a very popular talking point, and we would like to thank the Chartwells catering team for designing menus dedicated to International Week.
As the 2020 United States presidential election fell during International Week, the Politics Department ran an election debrief for V and VI Form. We watched the news about the election from different news agencies with different political stances, including BBC, CNN and Fox News. Who could have known that it would be another four days before we got a result!
A wide variety of classroom activities also took place bringing the world into the classroom in Art, DT&E and languages.
As for in-house activities, each house prefect team organised its international quiz. As you might expect, these were highly competitive! Chalmers West and Rogerson had their quizzes in the Memorial Hall. The Laidlaw quiz took place in the VIA Club, where music was played in different languages and, to raise our spirits international beers were provided! Rogerson had an exciting Thursday afternoon of international sports, including American football, Kabaddi and Pamplona bulldogs!
Although a lot of fun, familiarity with other cultures is an essential part of studying and working in the increasingly globalised economy of today. Merchiston’s International Week helps promote this idea and celebrates our varied international community; as well as being very enjoyable!