Life in an International School: How the House System Enriches Students
Take a peek into any school event at Chatsworth International School and you will see a sea of green, yellow and red. Adorned by students – and sometimes teachers and other staff, this myriad of colours signify the school house system. Established across primary, lower secondary and upper secondary levels, this arrangement is a unique and invaluable aspect of student life at Chatsworth.
Historically, the school house system was implemented in British schools, particularly full boarding schools in England. This practice is now common in many international schools in Singapore and around the world. A school house system comes with many intrinsic benefits for both the students and the school, including fostering a sense of belonging and providing more opportunities outside of academic work.
How does this system enrich the lives of our students? Let us dive deeper into the school house system at Chatsworth International School.
Our School House System
All students and teaching staff of Chatsworth are assigned to one of the three Houses: Changi, Sentosa and Raffles. Each House comprises students from all levels, ensuring diversity and inclusivity at every turn. Our house system is deeply rooted in every aspect of school life, inspiring House members to strive towards a common goal and at the same time working for their personal ones. The point system also allows the school to award participants who demonstrate good work, sportsmanship, commendable citizenship, among other attributes.
Siblings are also administered into the same House, which allows for better orientation and familiarity. For example, a secondary school student can help a younger sibling in primary school get acquainted with the school functions in a more effective and positive manner.
Benefits of being in a Chatsworth House
Apart from forging a greater sense of identity, our school house system offers several benefits for our students.
Fostering stronger identity
Through adopting its own theme and identity, the Houses within our house system serve to create a sense of belonging and identity among members. Students will be made to feel right at home by participating in a series of team building activities such as helping out in school events. In doing so, they develop a sense of belonging and quickly overcome their fear of being left out – a feeling which is common when students join a new school.
Building new ties
The sense of camaraderie and friendship is what our school is trying to develop. From the annual Sports Day to service learning outside of campus, the house system allows Houses to intermingle and team up together – albeit sometimes with a little friendly competition. These newly formed ties can be crucial to any student, especially those who are new to the school. Other opportunities include engagement activities such as field trips and community building programmes.
Within a House, students can undertake several roles – including leadership ones – to help them contribute and make a difference. The House Captains work with teacher mentors to develop their leadership and organising House events and programmes. Being a House representative can help to drive stewardship and encourage participation.
Be Part of This Enriching Experience
There is no doubt that each of these aspects have created high performing individuals and developed leaders of tomorrow. Our school house system is an ode to the school spirit and ethos, infused within the lives of all our students. With a long standing history and tradition ingrained within each House, this system has been effective in fostering closer ties amongst students, enhancing learning and building a greater sense of belonging and school culture here at Chatsworth.
As an International Baccalaureate (IB) school, our students are treated to an enlightening journey that is both rewarding and innovative. Through our programmes, they will inevitably be part of a community apart from themselves and carve a path to become bright global citizens.