Some say high school never ends. Graceans can attest to that as there are some things in a Gracean’s life that they can’t forget. Having a rich background from the fusion of the Christian values and the Chinese-Filipino education, there is still a lot more to know about this school aside from their mathletes, orchestras, and robotics team. More than Bible verses, math lessons and chorale competitions, we take these twenty-one wonderful memories with us even after we graduate:
1. “Wonderful Grace of Jesus”
If you have one song that you will take with you even after your Gracean life, it’s most likely your school hymn, “Wonderful Grace of Jesus”. It’s hard to forget each verse when you sing that almost every time during your Gracean life. You are probably singing it in your head as you read this sentence.
2. You’re a walking hymnal
Aside from your school hymn, it’s almost impossible not to know any hymns. After all, you have a hymnal to go along with that memory. In fact, you can even sing some songs in Chinese. Some might have even memorized a few hymn numbers (not page numbers) in your hymnal. (i.e. 232 What A Friend)
3. English or Chinese only
It’s strictly English or Chinese only unless you are reciting Panatang Makabayan or attending your Filipino class.
4. Creativity of Hiding Cellphones/ “Chiang”
Since cellphones are banned in school, texting with your phone in your pocket was a skill everyone knew (which was pretty easy before when all cellphones were in touchscreen). At one point in your Gracean life, you have probably thought of a creative way to hide your cellphones. It doesn’t matter if it’s inside your water jug, behind the blackboard, or on top of the bulletin boards, once word spreads that there will be a surprise inspection you already know what to do. You are so used to this that you never use the word “confiscate”, but “Chiang”.
5. Official Gracean Socks
Girls could wear any length of socks as long as it did not go below one’s ankle. It was such an issue that in time, the school released its own official socks with the perfect length.
6. A Beka Books
While some schools get the local books, Graceans grew up using the A Beka Books for Science, English and Literature. Those books are no joke to carry. As early as elementary, you have already been working out your arms just by carrying those books. (Sucks for you if you got hand-me-down abeka books hardbound for “protection”)
7. Weight lifting. It’s more fun in Grace
Speaking of those heavy books, the only way to carry them around was with strollers, which you had to roll up the stairs via temporary wooden ramps with manong helping you pull them up (yes, they were THAT heavy) Thank God lockers were made available for high schoolers. Bookload is still the same though, if not more.
8. 1+1= 2 Math Subjects
As if one math is not enough to make your brain crack, Graceans have two maths, ME (Math Enrichment) and IM (Integrated Math) in their high school subjects.
9. Two Chapels
Math is not the only thing being done twice. Chapel periods are also done twice a week (one in English and one in Chinese). Make sure not to forget your Bible and your Hymnal.
10. Sunday School
And if you still can’t get enough of 2 services on the weekdays, there’s still Sunday School… and a youth service in GCC (Grace Christian Church) right after. Yes, we Graceans have very our own church.
11. Silent Moment Opportunity (SMO)
“The official time is 7am. The official time is 7am. SMO will officially begin at this time.”
When you are either silent, loud or rushing to get to class on time during the Silent Moment Opportunity.
12. Mo Pit and Xiao Kai
Your weekends are never complete without an assignment on Mo Pit, Xiao Kai or Both. And no, those black markers won’t work with your Chinese teachers. Let us not forget those moments when you accidentally spilled your O-bak all over your uniform.
13. Maki House, Wong Nai Nai and Anna’s
Your Gracean life is not complete without tasting the iconic “Ma-Ki” of Maki House, the popular noodles of Wong Nai Nai and the various selection of Anna’s.
14. Barrier between Elem and HS
When you think you’re a rebel back in elementary just by crossing that dark pathway to the high school wing near the music room.
15. Class Pass
When you have to bring those letter sized laminated class passes just to go to the bathroom.
16. “Study Hard”
When Mr. Bacani tells you that the middle finger means to “study hard” and not anything else.
17. “Cher”/ “Siens”/ “老师“
When you try your best not to call your college professors, “Cher” or “Siens”, because you were so used to these names back in high school.
18. No Prom/ Fair/ Field Trips
While some schools have been talking about their proms, field trips and fairs, Grace has none of the above. Instead, you have Field Day for Fair and Seniors’ Retreat for Field Trips. While your cousins or friends from different schools are preparing how to ask their date or what to wear for prom, you were preparing for the Turn Over Ceremony instead. But hey, you turned out quite well even without them.
19. Graceans Can Be Competitive
Chorale competition and Field Day are extremely important. You spend countless rehearsals just to fix your choreography and harmonize yourself. The goal is to WIN (or at least beat the Star Section). Graceans can be quite competitive. There are competitions for writing, speeches, and even Chinese Dictionary (字典比赛) competitions across levels.
20. Mang Domeng is as immortal as his photos
Every Gracean for X Years has probably had their photo taken by Mang Domeng. You might even have changed your order in line just to stand next to your friend during picture taking. No one can forget his favorite spiel, “Boys! Stand Straight! Ready! 1, 2” *Snap*.
21. College of the Future
Of course, who can forget Mr. Angeles’ branding of Grace Christian College as the…..wait for it….”College of the Future!” *points to the upper right direction*
Have you met Grace Christian College’s new president Dr. Christine Tan? Get to know her here.
Photo credits: Bernadine Falsis, Dickson Lua, Justine Tan