Karya Siswa

Reach Your Dreams

As a little girl who grew up in an urban area, Nadhila always longed for a peaceful country life. Not that the city, Jakarta, didn't satisfy her, but it's because there were not many open spaces to play. Playing hide and seek was always easy because there were no place to hide except under the desks or behind doors. Weekends were spent in shopping malls or at a restaurant with the whole family. One wish that she kept in her mind was the chance to move out to places she read in novels written by Enid Blyton, a place where she could enjoy nature, camp, and have an adventure.

Her prayers were answered one day when her mother informed the whole family that they were oing to move. Not to another city, but to another country.

"Canberra," said her mother, "Though it will be temporary."

Pictures of what she read in novels suddenly came rushing through her head. She wanted to shout and dance around the entire house, but instead she asked, "Where's that?"

The long flight with Qantas didn't tire her. She kept looking out at the clouds that looked like cotton candy. The stewardesses were all nice and kept giving her food and drinks. When she landed and walked out of the airport, she felt the chilly air rippled through her spine. She put on her jumper and along with her mother, father and little brother, she climbed into a cab.

Two years flew away within a blink of the eyes. Whoosh! Nadhila did experience an adventure, the first in her life, though it wasn't exactly like the novels, but close enough. She saw many new things; the kangaroos, the aboriginal paintings, didgeridoo, tye opera house and harbor bridge when she visited Sydney for the holidays, and many others. She did go out camping near the beach and many weekends were spent having barbeque sausages, not at a restaurant, but at a park!

Returning home was the difficult part. As a 12 year old girl, adjusting to changes wasn't easy. In fact, she didn't want to return home. The two years she spent in Australia made her feel at home. She built strong bonds with her friends, with the weather and with Australia’s beautiful yet peaceful life. Unfortunately, whether she liked it or not, she had to return home and start high school, an entirely different world.

Having to start high school didn't please her, although she was excited to meet new friends, she knew she wouldn't be playing outdoors much. Schools in Indonesia are all demanding. Nevertheless, a few weeks after returning home, she started high school, still thinking that the next day, a miracle would happen and she would be back in Australia and play with her friends at the park.

After five years of living in Indonesia, she still holds on to that dream. The dream of going outside her country and experiencing all the adventures another country has to offer. At the same time, there was an open submission to go on an exchange year to the United States, funded by the US government. Nadhila didn't hesitate to sign up right away. All she had in her mind was the exciting experience and adventures back in Australia. After a long selection process, she got a phone call from the committee informing her about her placement.

"You are going to be hosted in New York, not New York City, it's a town called Canton."

The same kind of feelings rushed through her heart and to her brain. She wanted to shout out loud and dance around, but again, innocently she asked, "Where’s that?"

The flight to the US was long, but she wasn't alone. She departed from Soekarno-Hatta airport with 89 other teenagers from across Indonesia. For her, that alone was a whole new adventure! They had to stick together so that nobody would got lost, they had to change flight in Kuala Lumpur, Frankfurt and New York City. They experienced the confusion of converting rupiah to ringgit, ringgit to euro, and finally euro to dollars. They experienced switching the watch, rewinding it backwards and forwards, practicing English with Europeans whenever they want to buy something at the airport, all the while carrying big bags of belongings! The long journey was worth it. They arrived in America with excitement no words could describe.

Nadhila was hosted in a small town in upstate New York, near the border of Canada. The experience she had was totally different from the one in Australia because she lived with an American family, the Wheelers. The Wheelers were nice, they liked to cook and loved making canned pickles, fresh fruit jams, strawberry shortcake, cookies and cakes for all occasions. They sometimes cooked in big portions and invited the neighbors over to have dinner. Nadhila pursued her baking hobby by taking cooking classes at school, a subject that is nearly impossible to find available in public schools in Indonesia. She was also involved in the girls’ varsity basketball team and musical "Grease". She tried different things and tasted different kinds of food. She witnessed the production of maple syrup and found out that apart from syrup, maple is also used to make ice cream and candies. Later on, she decided that her most favorite ice cream flavor was maple.

Canton is a small town of 5000 people. Her host dad once joked that the number of cows exceeds the number of people in Canton. Living in Canton changed her perspective towards the "American Life". She once thought that everything in America is so modern and high-tech, but found out that it is also still rich in culture and traditions.

Today, after three years of setting her feet back in her country, Nadhila is still holding on to that dream. The dream of living in places she once read in novels and have an adventurous life.

Nadhila – IELTS Advanced

Pelican 2 - Project Based Activity

Ms Francesca's class attempted to build a Time machine (Geodesic Dome) using only newspapers and sticky tape.


This activity encouraged students to communicate with each other, follow directions, problem solve together and promoted leadership.


If I could tell you

Time will say nothing but I told you so,

time only knows the price we have to pay,

if I could tell you I would let you know.

If we should weep when clowns put on their show,

if we should stumble when musicians play,

time will say nothing but I told you so.

There are no fortunes to be told, although,

Because I love you more than I can say,

if I could tell you I would let you know.

The winds must come from somewhere when they blow,

there must be reasons why the leaves decay,

time will say nothing but I told you so.

Perhaps the roses really want to grow,

the vision seriously intends to stay,

If I could tell you i would let you know.

Suppose the lions all get up and go,

and all the brooks and soldiers run away,

will time say nothing but I told you so,

If I could tell you i would let you know.

Poem by Dimas, REAL General 12, First Certificate A


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