When I think of my CAS experience over these two years, he first activity that comes to my mind is Visual Arts, because without the compulsion and encouragement that a programme like CAS creates, I would never have taken such a big step outside my comfort zone. Through CAS, I have been able to rekindle my passion for sketching and painting, work on my fine motor skills and my patience. When I am sitting in the VA Room with music playing in the background, and slowly painting away delicate flowers on a thin muslin cloth, the problems of the classroom seem really far away.
Therefore, more than anything else, CAS has taught me the importance of being BALANCED. In my pursuit of meeting the prescribed CAS points, I feel I have become a fitter, more creative and more CARING individual. CAS has also made me more OPEN-MINDED, and willing to TAKE RISKS. For instance, previously, I would never even think of participating in SUO or going for a tree plantation drive early morning on a weekend. But after these experiences, my worldview seems to have expanded as I am able to look past the ‘effort’ factor and look to the ‘reward’ factor of activities.
These experiences have therefore taught me that even though I may not have total mastery in all the activities that I undertook, I should continue trying to learn new things to expand my horizons. I say this because although CAS is not academic, it has definitely been an extremely educational experience: my CAS project (FSMUN), has taught me the importance of being patient, tolerant and being a better team player; my participation in Tennis and Football has taught me the importance of hard work and perseverance; my participation in MUNs and debates has taught me the importance of creative problem solving.
I am also happy that my participation in CAS activities has been able to benefit others around me – as I mentored students to participate in MUNs, went on a tree plantation drive for the betterment of the environment and volunteered for the organisation of various student-led events.
Nothing good comes easy, and I faced significant difficulties in achieving all these positive outcomes. For me, I think the biggest challenge was being perseverant and committed when it came to sport because after a tiring day of school, going out on the field can become very tiring. However, after some initial struggles, as I grew to enjoy the sports that I was playing this difficulty was alleviated.
Moving forward, I think I’m definitely going to use the creativity – action – service formula when planning my schedule to ensure that I have a balanced and principled lifestyle that benefits me and others.