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A Letter from the Editor

Welcome to the first ever ICHK student-published magazine!
During term three, we spent four days honing our creative writing/journalism skills. You can enjoy Lucia Pareja Lopez's feature article on Hanson Robotics, together with Anki Mak's profile on Dr. David Hanson. A big thank you to him and Dr. Gina Smith for helping us so much! Day 2 was a Cultural Tour of Hong Kong, and you can enjoy the snapshots of the city written by Charlotte Cheung, together with a restaurant review of Cafe 8 by Cherie Chan together with a profile of Cafe 8's manager John McKinven by Jessie Cheuk. They do excellent work on working with disabled workers in Hong Kong. We finish with two short stories by Sheza Khan and Yiling Tang and also a special feature includes a Hong Kong Young Writers Award nominated poem, written by a Year 8 student. Thank you for reading our magazine and here's to many more to follow...!

By Charlotte Cheung and Jessie Cheuk, Editors

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Deep Learning Creative Writing Diary

Day 1: Journalism- Feature + Profile Writing

We were given an excellent opportunity to join the Deep Learning Robotics group and take a look at pioneering technological work going on at the Hanson Robotics. This event was organised with the very kind support of Dr. David Hanson (one of our parents, the founder of Hanson Robotics, and the creator of Sophia).

After students had a chance to see the robotics production lab in action, Dr. Gina Smith, a prominent New York Times best-selling author and technology correspondent for the San Francisco Chronicle for 10 years, led us through a writing workshop to help us create both feature and profile articles on our experiences.

Day 2 - June 14th - Cultural Review/Travel Writing

Students designed their own "ultimate day out in Hong Kong!" Using Time Out/South China Morning Post listings and magazines, students researched and decided upon their perfect Hong Kong day out. We went out-and-about in this wonderful city to "paint postcards" of the city looking out at Victoria Harbour and gazing down from the Peak.

We went for lunch at the ethically-minded Cafe 8 above the Maritime Museum at Central Ferry Piers. This unique organisation provides delicious lunch options as well as meaningful work opportunities for disabled people. We were lucky enough to chat with manager, John McKinven who told us more about the concept. You can read our restaurant review and profile article in our magazine.

Day 3 - June 22nd- Short Story Writing

Today the group were at school, reviewing short stories from writers such as Roald Dahl (having been inspired by the incredible school production of Matilda the night before!) We discussed our favourite novels and what the authors did with their writing that resonated so deeply with us. We analysed the style of horror writers such as Emily Bronte and Mary Shelley, as well as examining how George R. Martin created tension through the setting and atmosphere of Game of Thrones. Students got to develop their own character sketches and then create short stories and in the afternoon received some expert advice from talented Y10 creative writers, Angus, Marcus, Cherry and Melissa.

Day 4 - June 26th - Editing and Publishing

Claire Griffiths, ICHK's PR officer and coordinator of the Weekly Bulletin, met with students in the morning and gave them some tips on the importance of accuracy and fairness in journalistic writing. She offered up tips on capturing atmosphere in written work, and also keeping your audience clearly in mind as you developed your pieces. Mrs. Griffiths also showed the students the publishing template for the Weekly Bulletin, so that when our pieces were thoroughly peer reviewed we could publish the first ever ICHK Student Magazine.

Day 1- A Visit to Hanson Robotics

We were given the amazing opportunity to visit Hanson Robotics and interview David Hanson, creator of the world-renowned Sophia. We were able to delve deeper into the world of robotics, and discover possibly mankind's salvation. If you would like to read more, click here.

"...a whole new world, the world of robotics. This industrial lab belongs to an aspiring company called Hanson Robotics. This company spearheads the movement of science and robotics, creating cutting-edge technology that can may well affect the future of our society, perhaps even our planet." - An extract from our feature article, written by Lucia, 8.1

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A Modern Prometheus - Meeting Dr. David Hanson, creator of Sophia

For the fascinating interview with David Hanson, please click here for the full Q&A.

A small extract...

"...clouds. Beautiful cloudy skies filled with stars. I was fifteen years old when I was studying exponential functions and this made me think of the massive potential in nature."

Day 2 - Snapshots of Hong Kong

Charlotte 8.1, a travel writer and historian in the making, has written several beautiful pieces describing some of the most beautiful scenery in Hong Kong. The Peak and Victoria Harbour. Here is her writing:

Victoria Harbour

The dull metallic green ocean water of Victoria Harbour went up and down, up and down. It looked like a typical harbour at a glance, with boats going across and a sea salt smell, but this particular harbour wasn’t so “typical” because it reflects what Hong Kong is known for - the skyline which has attracted visitors from all around the world to come visit.

From Tsim Sha Tsui Ferry Pier, you could see Hong Kong in just one glance. Here lies a body of water which has an area of 41.88 km2 - Victoria Harbour. This has been one of the main trading points of Hong Kong since the 1800s that was named after Queen Victoria.

The oldest form of transportation for Hong Kong and crossing the harbour, which is still around today is the Star Ferry, which has been operating since 1888. The Star Ferry is a commonly used type of transportation that takes you across in less than 15 minutes with the fare of $2.7 HKD only! It has been named one of the 50 places of a lifetime by National Geographic Traveller and it also well known as one of the world’s best value-for-money sightseeing trips. The Star Ferry has had four generations of ferries, and the 4th generation that is in use right now has been used since 1959.

Above it, the skyline of Central and Wan Chai can be found, including the IFC, the Bank of China Tower and the Hong Kong Observation Wheel, and possibly Victoria Peak on days with a clear sky. The IFC that towers all the 303 other skyscraper buildings of Hong Kong is 412 metres tall and has 88 floors. It is the second tallest building in Hong Kong, ranking below its sister building, the ICC which is 484 metres tall. Beneath it, the fairly eye-catching 60 metre Hong Kong Observation Wheel on the Central ferry pier stands tall. It goes around for 12 hours from 11 am to 11 pm every day for only $20 HKD! Then in the distance, you can see the Bank of China Tower that is 367 metres tall that is impossible to miss. It has an interesting design of zigzag lines through the building and two lines sticking out at the top. All these tie the Hong Kong skyline together and you can now understand why Hong Kong is so famous for its skyline because it is really phenomenal.

The Peak

“Various and bursting shades of green dotted the artist’s palette, and as he casually splashed them onto his canvas, hundreds of trees and leaves appeared.” - This describes Victoria Peak perfectly. Apart from trees, towering buildings and residential houses are also scattered around the landscape. The thin fog in the air had a cool breeze that floated towards the thousands of buildings below our feet...everything seems to shrink. You could see almost all of Hong Kong Island and even perhaps Lion Rock.

Victoria Peak, commonly known as the Peak, was the capital of the old British administration of Hong Kong and was known as “The Castle.” Since it was distant from the city and it was easy to observe the people. It had a more refreshing atmosphere than the rest of Hong Kong and it was remote, making it perfect to place “The Castle” here.

Before that, workers would also use the Peak to send flag signals to sailors that were sailing in the harbour, so it was once called “The Flag Raising Mountain”.

Even today, the Peak holds the most expensive and valuable housing in Hong Kong. It’s also a famous tourist point with the Peak Tram and the astonishing view.

The Peak Tram is a famous attraction within Hong Kong. It is slow but steady and has been serving since May 30, 1888. It holds the title of world's steepest tram route because it covers four kilometers of the ground when only using 400 meters of elevation. It offers you great views of the harbour and skyscrapers and carries circa 17,000 people per day.

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Day 2 - Cultural Writing

Between visiting a robotics lab and going up to the Peak, we were able to visit a brilliant restaurant near the Maritime Museum: Cafe 8. Here's a restaurant review written by Cherie, 8.1

Cafe 8 - Restaurant Review

A restaurant with a strong social conscience that offers a relaxing atmosphere with a view of the harbour- and delicious food.

"Do you want to enjoy your food in a relaxing, peaceful place? Cafe 8 will probably be the best place for that. Cafe 8 is located above the Hong Kong Maritime Museum at Central Ferry Piers. The cafe boasts a bright and spacious interior and is a great way to escape the hustle and bustle of the city.

The restaurant also supports disabled people and helps them to settle into a job, giving them chances they thought they’d never have. They get to interact with other customers and socialise with different people, and so helps them to expand their work and life experience.

Last week we visited Cafe 8 for the first time and my first impression is that this place is a lot more calming and relaxing than I thought it would be judging by its name. I thought it was going to be just like any other cafe with really dull and dark lighting. I was surprised to see all those different sandwiches sitting on the shelf; They looked really appetizing, every sandwich is packed with ingredients that add a touch of colour to it. We were then led to a big table with really comfortable sofas and white tables. I sat down and looked at my surroundings, I looked up and saw lights that were hidden in big white lanterns, adding a traditional touch to the place. Around the restaurant, there were a few beautiful pictures of the blue ocean.

We were given a couple of menus, which were filled with options and we struggled to choose what we wanted to eat. Finally we ordered our food at the counter and I ordered a beef lasagna that cost 80 HK dollars. The food didn’t come right away, in fact, it took quite a while, but the waiter and waitress were friendly and kind to us, they made sure to come in and check in with us every few minutes. After about 8 - 10 minutes we were given four salads, we didn’t know what it was for so we assumed that they were the side dishes for our meals. I don’t usually eat salads but surprisingly I found myself finishing the salad. It had a mixture of different kinds of fresh vegetables. The best part about this salad was the sauce they added, it was perfectly well balanced with a bit of sourness but as well as a touch of sweetness."

For the full review and images of the food, please click here.

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We were also able to interview the manager of Cafe 8, John McKinven. Jessie 9.2 has written a Q&A detailing the four questions we asked John. For the interview, please click here.

Sheza's Short Story - The Abandoned House

On day 3 we focused on characterisation and setting and created some of our very own characters that would feature in our short story. Two students, Sheza 7.1 and Yiling 8.3 then went on to write their own short stories, links of which are below. Sheza, an aspiring horror novelist, has written a short horror story, while Yiling, has written a teen romance piece.

Please click here for Sheza's.

"I made it upstairs safely. My hands rested on my knees as I took a few deep breaths from the run. A loud bang erupted from downstairs then I heard footsteps coming up the stairs. I ran to the closest room and locked myself in. Then I heard a child giggle that sent chills down my spine..."

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Yiling's Short Story - The Story of Mika and Jason

For Yiling's, please click here.

"For a split second, my mind was completely blank. I was amazed by his gorgeous face. His blue eyes and blonde hair soon made me blush really hard..."

Lucia's HKYWA Poem

Lucia Pareja Lopez has been shortlisted in the Hong Kong Young Writers Awards, a competition for young talented writers to express themselves. The theme for 2018 was New Journeys To The West, a story about a monk that made a long journey from China across the southwestern mountains to India. During his trip, he was accompanied by the Monkey King, a talking pig and a friar. One winner is chosen for each category and one lucky student will be the winner of the whole competition, claiming the title of The Hong Kong Young Writer Of 2018

Here is the poem that made its way into the finals:

The heat of this desert

Is a killer

And like a venomous snake

It hunts for


I’ve been up

And sometimes down

The mountains of the southwest

Accompanied by the


The sun is empty

The only cloud

Is the breathing smoke of the fire

Igniting the


I am dying

Like this desert

And I feel my thirst scratching

The back of my


India is miles away

From China

And my feet are

Oh so tired of the burning


Every drop of life

Has been drained from me

And I feel like falling

On my numb


Like a river

I run and never look back

And like a fire

I keep gasping for


I stop

And so do my heart and lungs

Standing before me

Are the rich fields of


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