For data collection, the researcher was attached to three Hong Kong secondary schools with average academic and extra-curricular activity performances for three months each during the past two years. Having got familiarized with the teachers and students through joining various formal and informal school activities, in the last month of his attachment, the researcher invited each teacher to be interviewed on the topic of extra-curricular activities and to be tape-recorded. In the end, 122 teachers agreed to be the participants in the interviews. The interview was conducted in a semi-structured way, in which the teacher first recounted and commented on his/her experience and impression of extra-curricular activities. The researcher then asked for clarifications and further exploration of his/her own conception, with the help of some "situation cards". In the whole interview process, the researcher adopted a "non judgmental" attitude towards the definition of "extra-curricular activities", only asking the interviewee questions on the clarity and consistency of his/her conception. Each interview lasted for about an hour. After the interviews, the recordings were converted into written scripts. Based on the interview process and scripts, the researcher sorted out various main themes and key words and proceeded with data analysis. After three stages of back-and-forth collation and with the number of cases reduced to forty, finally seven conceptions of extra-curricular activities have been constructed: Accountability, Attachment, Mould, Experience, Personal growth, Liberation, and Balance. The researcher has depicted the specific horizon, concepts and the relationship among concepts, and also compared and contrasted the distinctive features of each conception.
There are multifarious extra-curricular activities in Hong Kong secondary schools. Nearly every teacher participates in the activities. Different teachers infuse extra-curricular activities with diverse meanings