About the author: David Quan, one of thirty recipients worldwide of a Cambridge Trust Scholarship, was one of our state’s top performing students, earning a near-perfect ATAR and International Baccalaureate (IB) score. An Order of Australia Association Student Citizenship Awards recipient, David has tutored, coached and mentored hundreds of Primary and Secondary students over the last half-decade, especially through his active volunteering and leadership roles for school, basketball, music, public speaking, social enterprise and community service.

Advanced Education SA is pleased to partner with David before he commences his undergraduate studies at the world-renowned University of Cambridge. We hope that his fresh insights and perspective may offer all our students further inspiration to access excellence and advance their education. For private and group tuition enquiries, please visit our website at https://advancededucation.com.au/

  Note: Original Article HERE

Think back please to your good old days. When was it? What made it so good? 

Good Old Days or Not So Good Old Days?

Year 4 would’ve undoubtedly been my good old days. The learning that year – specifically, as a report writer – was most significant. I took absolute pride in the work: one report, for instance, was produced after working almost every day on what was supposedly a 3-week holiday. It was a big deal! Needless to say, the ideas were well-explored; the spelling, grammar and punctuation were near-perfect – at least, for an Upper-Primary School level.

I truly believed in my abilities until a few years ago when I decided to re-read those presentations. Whilst I had expected to detect some elements of childishness or messiness of handwriting, I wasn’t prepared for the countless previously unnoticed spelling, grammar, and punctuation mistakes. That caused an older-me to scowl and lose patience in frustration. God knows what I would have thought of a Year 4 if he or she would make those mistakes. So, it made me wonder: What had caused this disparity between my memory and reality? To not realize those seemingly inexcusable and, frankly, dumb errors just seemed incomprehensible and careless. 

A True Moral Exemplar: Mr Gerry McCarthy

But there’s more to this: contemplating the conundrum led me to reflect on the influence of Mr Gerry McCarthy, my Year 4 teacher. Seeking to understand his approaches changed my behaviour, outlook, and attitude, in a palpable manner. So, buckle up and allow me to present the genius of Mr McCarthy – a man who I consider to be a true moral exemplar. I’ll do so, to the best of my ability, with appropriate grammar, punctuation, subheadings, visual features, and captions – all elements that he advocated for an effec