Rosyth School, Hwa Chong Institution win national Chinese quiz

Rosyth School's (from left) Lucas Gao Yuxiang, Ma Jinwen and Zhang Chengrui won the primary category at this year's National Chinese Challenge on Saturday. The challenge is an annual event to promote the Chinese culture and cultivate an interest in l
Rosyth School's (from left) Lucas Gao Yuxiang, Ma Jinwen and Zhang Chengrui won the primary category at this year's National Chinese Challenge on Saturday. The challenge is an annual event to promote the Chinese culture and cultivate an interest in learning Chinese among students. PHOTO: LIANHE ZAOBAO

Rosyth School and Hwa Chong Institution emerged champions at this year's National Chinese Challenge, which saw a record number of participants.

In its eighth year, the competition attracted more than 5,000 children, up 40 per cent from last year's count. They come from 172 schools.

The challenge is an annual event to promote the Chinese culture and cultivate an interest in learning Chinese among students. Participants can also showcase their language abilities and interact with other Chinese language learners.

The event is organised by Singapore Press Holdings' (SPH) Chinese Media Group and Nanyang Girls' High School.

It is Hwa Chong Institution's first time clinching the top position in the secondary category, while Rosyth School's last win in the primary category was in 2016, SPH said in a statement on Saturday.

Fifteen-year-old Andrew Timothy Siauw from Hwa Chong Institution said: "We have been preparing for the competition on top of school examinations. It has been stressful but we have also learnt many fun facts and the beauty of the Chinese language while preparing. I realised there are many little stories behind the Chinese names of our MRT stations."

In the primary category, Maha Bodhi School was in second place and Radin Mas Primary School in third.

In the secondary category, Raffles Institution took the second spot and Nanyang Girls' High School came in third.

Teams consisting of three participants each were tested on their knowledge of the Chinese language. This includes translation of commonly used terms from English to Chinese, pronunciation, literature, current affairs and general knowledge.

To qualify, participants took an online test during the preliminary round.

The three secondary schools and three primary schools with the highest average scores made it to the finals.

Ms Cheong Lin Li, editor of student publications in SPH's Chinese Media Group, said: "We are glad that this competition has garnered great support from the students and their schools. Through the National Chinese Challenge, we were able to engage students in the Chinese language in a fun and entertaining way while showing its relevance in their daily lives."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 19, 2021, with the headline 'Rosyth School, Hwa Chong Institution win national Chinese quiz'. Subscribe