Teaching grade 5

On the teacher’s day of 2015, I realized that teaching is not an easy job. I came to this realization while teaching a class of grade 5 to celebrate teacher’s day. My friend Kripa Patel and I had to teach that class for 2 hours. This activity was extremely challenging and also a great learning experience.

The most challenging part of this activity was getting the grade 5 kids to maintain the decorum in the class. The students were not listening to us and were just creating a chaos. Some students were running here and there, some were talking with their friends and others were busy playing games and watching videos on their Chromebooks. In the end to stop all this chaos we had to shout on some of the children to get them to listen to us.

Another challenge that we faced during the activity was not being able to stick to our plan that we had created before we went to teach the class. We had planned to show them a video, however, due to technical difficulties we were not able to do so. Hence, we had to immediately prepare a new course of action, which was to divide the students into two groups and have them debating on multiple activities. This way we were able to not waste their or our time.

Through this activity I realized that I still need to work on my leadership skills and I also learned the importance of contingency planning. With better leadership skills I would have been able to better handle the class and the students and with a proper contingency planning I might have been able to make the learning experience for the students more smooth.

I was really glad that I did this activity with my friend because I do not think I would have alone been able to get the students to listen to me. This activity made me realize how working collaboratively adds more skills to the group and also how problems become so much more easier to solve when they are shared with others.img_5343-1024x683

Personal Profile

screen-shot-2016-11-30-at-4-24-11-pmHi my name is Muskaan Agarwal and I am 17 years old. I was born and brought up in Surat and have been studying in Fountainhead school from 6 years.

My interests and talents include dancing which I have been doing since like birth, playing basketball and football but basically sports in general, cooking, and many other fun activities. I have taken part in several basketball competitions and have been learning dance formally for more than 10 years now yet I am encouraged to learn more. Apart from all this I also love taking part in adventure activities which is the reason why I have been to around four adventure camps and have done rappelling, mountain climbing, treks, river rafting, zip line, bridge slithering and many such activities.

If we talk about my personality, my friends say I am very bold and fun loving. I am an extrovert however I do not like public speaking and am shy sometimes. I am also straightforward but still know where to draw a line. I also believe that  friendship is a true blessing and everyone should embrace it to the fullest. Friends stay with you and support you in all your hardship and I believe my friends are also creditable for who I am right now.

My career plan for now is to move towards the field of management. The reason behind this is because I love leadership roles. Management lits me to perform exceptionally and give my 100%. I have organised and taken part in several events and seeing the outcome and happy faces of people have truly been a delight. I want to improve my skills, learn and experience more in this area and dream, to one day be a very successful event manager.

In the future I also want to travel to different places outside India as I haven’t had an opportunity to do so yet. I believe life is a journey with learnings and lessons and we should enjoy and seize every moment of it.

Well in the end, my takes from the past 17 years are that “learn and change for good, but don’t lose your identity” and that “you are the ruler your world, no one else”.

Plantation Drive

img_0729I have already been a part of many plantation activities before however this one was really different. Nature club was taking us to KV central school to be a part of a plantation drive which I volunteered for. I always wanted to do something for the nature because I love the nature and getting muddy has never been an issue.

This time it was monsoon and was raining heavily when we had to do the activity. No matter what condition I did not back out from the activity and with raincoats and umbrellas, I was all set to go. We were introduced to different trees and were told the reason behind planting them which was to give the birds shelter later in bad weathers. This made me feel confident and knowledgeable about the nature at least a bit.img_0731

When we started planting the trees, definitely it was harder than other plantation drives as because of the rain it was all muddy and we were even unable to walk properly. The holes were already dug for us before hand but because of the rain, they were filled with water and so we had to remove the was with the SAW and then plant the trees immediately so that the holes doesn’t fill back with water. Also the saplings were kept like really far away from the area we had to plant so we had to carry them for a long distance. For this to happen we divided yourself into random teams and worked collaboratively so one person remove the water from the hole, the order brings the tree and plants it. It was really fun however it was raining constantly throughout the time which made it really difficult and physically tiring. Accompanying me and my friends we also had another group of people who were completely strangers to us so I kinda tried to interact with them as well. After the plantation drive was over we, all of us planted about 50 trees which was really great and I felt really proud of myself that I was a part of this activity even though the weather conditions weren’t as supporting.


CAS Essay

CAS was overall a very enjoyable learning process for me. It allowed me to learn important life skills such as management and working collaboratively which would have otherwise been difficult to learn.

CAS has created a lot of memories for me throughout the course of these 18 months. The first activity that comes to my mind when I think about CAS is the monologue competition in which I participated. This activity required me to go out of my comfort zone and perform a monologue on stage in front of other students. I believe that this activity really helped me grow by decreasing my stage fright and increasing confidence.

CAS taught me a lot of things. The most significant of which is the importance of planning. It taught me how with proper planning even the most difficult and complex tasks become easy and simple. CAS also taught me how important it was to be a risk taker. Through activities such as the monologue competition I realized taking risks gives opportunity to grow.

By engaging in CAS activities, a lot of times I was required to try new things which made me explore my potential and skills. It helped me realize my strengths and weaknesses. I realized that with a decent amount of practise I am able to perform well on stage and that I am am able to work collaboratively. I even came across some of my weaknesses such as not being punctual and not managing time properly.

Although CAS was extremely fun, I did faced a few challenges while completing it. The most difficult task was taking time out for activities. With all the internal assessments and extended essay I sometimes faced difficulty in allocating the required time for my CAS activities. The most difficult learning outcome for me to achieve was LO6 – “Demonstrate engagement with issues of global significance”. The main reason for this might be because I preferred engaging in activities which relate to local issues rather than global issues.

Even though I am done with CAS, I would still definitely keep doing CAS activities. I would try to apply my learnings from the CAS component to all further activities in which I would engage in.

The time I spent time with special children

screen-shot-2016-11-23-at-1-42-49-amI have never in my life volunteered or spend time with mentally challenged kids (special kids) and this was the very first time I do

so. I volunteered to spend time with special kids in Shree Nandan school and help them learn/ play with them. Initially I had no clue how I am going to go about this activity and how I am going to converse with the children in the school as I did not have any experience.

In the starting the kid wasn’t really able to converse with me as she spoke gujarati and I wasn’t really fluent with the language however I tried and did my level best to speak and converse with her and no matter how crooked I spoke she understood, which really made me feel appreciative. 


I was able to identify what difficulties she faced when the special child was learning about different animals and shapes as she knew what the names of the animals were but was not able to put the correct shape into the the board cut according to the shape. After some time she was really bored therefore we went to the area where all the children were about to play musical chairs. It was really satisfying to see these kids enjoy and play happily which even made me happy.

Definitely this activity made me knowledge about special kids and what kinds of difficulties they faced. It was something out of my comfort zone which is the reason why I was uncertain of attending the activity at first however now someday I might volunteer for a similar activity.



CAS Essay

CAS to me was one of my favourite things in the IB because it helped me do something other than academics. Where we had to study all the time, CAS was a recreational activity that helped me get my mind of the pressure and struggle.

When I think of CAS, the first activity that comes to my mind is the farewell that I organised for my seniors which was my CAS project. I will never forget that experience because that was the first ever event I organised being the head and I enjoyed and learned a lot. The event required a lot of creativity and I am really proud of myself because of putting up that event successfully as my seniors did appreciate me for my efforts.


CAS has taught me a lot of things making me lot more knowledgeable especially me because I pursue to become an event manager in the future and CAS gave me an opportunity to organise and be a part of many events. It was just like becoming an event manager in the age of 17 and definitely I came to know that I am capable of being one. I have learned new skills throughout the process, from developing my personality to learning new skills in the areas I already have experience, CAS has taught me how to be a learner. With that I have also learned the importance of communication skills and definitely I feel I am a better communicator now. Almost all the projects I was a part of was collaborative work with my friends and sometimes even strangers which has challange me from with and taught me how to be patient and cooperative and also how to be caring towards your colleagues.

To be honest, I have rarely been a part of any service related activity in the past and personally I wasn’t even interested. But I had to go and experience those kind of activities because of CAS and still date now I have been a part many plantation activities, serving people with water at marathons, helping special children and in many have taken part in many more activities that I haven’t even included in my CAS report. Now I enjoy going to such events and this particular experience has taught me how to be open minded and always be a risk taker and step out of your comfort zone an now I know that yes life begins at the end of your comfort zone. However the most difficult outcome to achieve was LO 6 which is demonstrate engagement with issues of global significance. Mainly because not often did people propose activities that fulfilled this learning outcome and other than doing something for the environment, it was difficult to do something on a small scale yet fulfil this learning outcome.

The most important thing that I am taking away from CAS is that it has now given me a start, I am going to continue to organise and be a part of events because first of all I know and have experience and second of all I enjoy being a part of different projects from within now. For sure I am not going to stop just because CAS is over.

All in all, I really enjoyed the whole process of CAS. I feel it is a really good opportunity for oneself to learn new things and grow as a person and not only IB schools but even other schools should be a part of this. 

CAS- Essay

CAS was my favorite core component out of three. I love the whole idea and aim of this subject,  Creativity, Action, and Service which was done for 18 long months really help me to rejuvenate myself.

The first activity that comes to my mind when I think about CAS is my CAS project that I organized which was about spending a day special kids. This is an event which is very close to my heart as this was a very first time where I initiated an event. Though this event is very close to my heart this a very difficult event, we faced many problems before, during and after the event however those problems gave me more experience and showed me the areas where I had to improve and also helped me to develop the person I am today. One of the main reasons why this event is special because my partner and I were able to give a stage to normal students to spend time and do activities with special kids and be a part of their life.

I have learnt a lot from CAS like- having patience, time management, cooperation, but most importantly going out of comfort zone. Each and every activity made me go out of my comfort zone, it was hard but it beneficial as it gave huge amount experience that I could use for my future and also helped me to develop myself. Every activity was a learning experience for me and a whole new insight into myself. The Service activities made me more open-minded, reflective, caring and tolerant to the world around. In addition, I also realized how important being a good communicator and a well-balanced student was.

In these 18 long months I have learnt tons and tons of different things which always helped me to grow better as a person. Before going into IB I was never a good communicator, I never went out of my comfort zone to do something, but after joining IB and doing CAS I developed and learnt many new things like- Never giving up, taking risks, developing myself of being a balanced student between studies and extracurricular activities and the most important going out of my comfort zone. As I learnt many things from CAS I also faced many difficulties from doing CAS like- I never took risk in any activity because I was too scared to fail but CAS has taught me that “Failure is not a problem, it’s a learning process” which means that there will be tons and tons of problems thrown at your way but the most important thing is how you tackle those problems and win.

The learning outcomes were really helpful in understanding the purpose and end goal of the experience and each activity. However, there were a few LOs that were difficult to achieve like- Demonstrate engagement with issues of global significance, but I engaged myself into activities were either about working collaboratively or developing areas for growth. Activities that came under Service were only ticking off the sixth learning outcome and I didn’t really indulge myself in Service related activities too much. But when I got to know the importance of this learning outcome I realized the importance of it and conducted my CAS project on it.   

As this core component has helped me a lot, I would 100% recommend doing it because this only helps a person in being a better version of themselves as well as making a better version of the society and the environment that we live in. CAS has helped me immensely in developing myself toward being a responsible, time managing, patient and overall being a good person, Although it has its own difficulties, but the final outcome is seen in myself and is very special.

Being Teacher For the first Time!

On 5th September 2015 ,I took part in a event where the students of my grade became teachers for half a day and conducted lessons in the first grade. I am a kind of person who always likes to try new things in life and when I heard about this activity I was very excited because I have never took part in an activity like this before and by enrolling in this activity I will learn something new from it which could help me in future too. I always wanted to be a teacher and teach children and when I got the opportunity to do it I was one of the first person to unroll for. There were total 39 students who participated in this event and we had to conduct class in pairs.

Before the event started me and my partner decided on what activities we will do while conducting the class and also divided the roles between us. We mutually decided on our roles equally so that there will not be someone alone without work. We also made sure that the activities that we were going to do were appropriate for the kids. Before the event started my partner and I made sure that we understand how to behave with the kids so that there will no problems faced during the event. As the event started we went to our class and started with our activities. During the event we made sure that we utilize the resources properly and try not waste them.

The activities that we decided To do

  • Introduction(Interaction with kids- Introducing themselves)
  • Read aloud
  • Musical chairs
  • Small indoor games
  • Passing the parcel
  • Poster making
  • Dance

The event was going very good, everyone was having fun and the kids were also participating in the activities. However we started facing problems when my partner could not continue due to some reasons and left the class, so I had to also cover for him and had the handle 20 first grader kids. At that time I was very tensed and got nervous because I had to do my roles as well as my partner’s roles. However as time passed I gained confidence and came up with some new ideas which helped me to manage the class more easily- Like I divided the class in groups where kids would do different activities in different groups so there will be no cluster in the class and everything will be managed systematically and less time consuming. Then the event ended, everybody came out of their allotted classes. I was personally very proud of myself as I learnt many new things, we also made sure that we behave in a certain was as those kids were in the first grade and I was also proud of myself as I passed on my knowledge to the kids which I never did before. I was fully focused in the event and I personally made sure I don’t waste resources and tried not break any school property and especially I tried not to behave inappropriately towards the kids, because I feel kids learn from their elder ones and if I acted inappropriately then they’ll learn from it and will do the same in future to their juniors.         

I learnt a lot of this from this event

  • Problem Solving- I developed a new skill that I never knew I had in me which is problem solving. When my partner left the class for some time I was very tensed and was also constantly thinking of solutions but as time passed I came up with a solution which helped a lot.
  • Being Patient- One of the biggest task of this event was being patient with those kids, because they were in the first grade and we had to make them understand the activity in their way which sometimes became hard for us.
  • Quick Thinking-  When the problem arrived I had to make quick changes in the class and had to make changes in the activities that we were doing.

Overall I learnt many new things from this event and I truly enjoyed this event!!!



CAS Profile



My name is Riya Shah. I study in Fountainhead school and am in year 2 of IB. I have taken English language literature, Business management, and Psychology as my HL and Hindi B, Mathematics and Environmental systems and societies as my SL. As it is evident from my subject choices, I am more inclined towards humanities and subjects that inculcate human interaction and deal with human experiences.

Apart from school, I am found either debating, dancing or singing.

I have always been a talker, and over the years with increasing knowledge, I seem to have an opinion about almost everything. Being dominant and persuasive, I am more inclined towards activities like Model United Nations, and parliaments.

I don’t quite remember what got me dancing, I remember moving my legs and shaking my hips since I was about 5. Dancing is legitimately the only thing that I would energetically do even at 3 in the morning. Though I have barely had formal training in dance, I am not that bad altogether.

Singing is something that I began when I entered elementary school, primarily because a teacher came over to teach my elder brother. Over the years, I seemed to love the sense of belonging I felt with music and that’s how it became and still is one of my favorite hobbies.

I would want to keep doing and improving in the three things listed above!



I have a very philosophical perspective towards life, I believe in thinking and questioning all the possibilities and repercussions our actions can have. In addition to that, one of the strongest belief I hold is that each and every person on this planet has a purpose, and the potential to accomplish that purpose if given the right growing and learning conditions. Having said that, I strongly believe that amongst many other social groups, women are a group that is one of the least fortunate as far as freedom for exercising one’s own potential is concerned. I, as a person can no more see women being objectified, demeaned or silenced in the society. Thus, I would always want to be a feminist in order to first raise the level of women to that of men and then pull both the genders to a greater equal freedom.

In order to accomplish my purpose sometime in my life, I staunchly think I need to improve my listening skills, my commitment and my tolerance and acceptance of people and the society at face value. Therefore, I would really want to get involved in activities that fall under either education and/or gender equality.



I am a fan of adventures that thrill me, with a great certainty that I will not die. I don’t fear ANY roller coasters, and it’s my dream to ride some of the most dangerous and thrilling roller coasters of the world. With that, my top 3 dreams would hands down be Sky Diving, Deep Sea Diving, and Bungee Jumping! I would also want to travel places that have different cultures and societal norms than my existing society. I want to meet, interact and understand various people around the world and establish a connection irrespective of the endless barriers.

CAS Essay

The activity that first comes to my mind when I think of my two-year journey in CAS is Learning camps. This activity really stood out for me because of my personal engagement and attachment with the issue of education and equality that was practiced in that activity. I feel proud that I initiated that with a few of my other friends and remained committed to it for a very long time despite the fact that my CAS ‘project’ was already over. This activity reflected my learnings of all other activities. It showcased the patience I built, the hard work I put in, the compassion with which I looked at the world and the very concept that if you just start somewhere, your destination will come walking your way.

In the heart of the PYP comes the learner profile, and in the heart of the IB comes CAS. No wonder that CAS enabled me to be open-minded, to be a better communicator, to be a thoughtful thinker and of course, how could anyone pass CAS without being a little reflective? CAS is an experience that brings out all the learner profile attributes in you and forces you to practice them, in order to attain a certain level of success. Over the two years, the growth in me which could be measured and tested with the learner profiles has tremendously helped me to not only be a better learner, student, daughter or sister; but an actually better human and a better global citizen. CAS teaches you the art to interact, understand and respond to the world outside in a balanced and thoughtful way.

A way in which CAS actually does that is through the difficulties it throws you way in forms of ‘Learning outcomes’. One such difficult learning outcome for me was LO4 which reads : “how perseverance and commitment in CAS experience”. Ironically, this is my LO with one of the highest points. However, commitment to one particular thing for a decent amount of time was a great challenge to me in the start of 11th grade. I am someone who likes trying and doing new things now and then. Taking up projects has always been the easy part, but sticking to it has been a challenge. One of the reasons of why I absolutely love CAS, which I would like to mention here is that you actually get points to do this kind of crazy stuff and all these fascinating activities. Usually, students of different schools struggle to take out time for their physical emotional and spiritual well-being whereas CAS here makes it mandatory to actually take a productive break from IBDP and renew ourselves and maintain our flavors! Having said that, I don’t know if I need to specifically mention that I would love to take this forward and help others and make this world a better place because let’s be honest here. CAS isn’t just an IB requirement, it’s an escape to reality. A reality that teaches you and guides you and lets you be your human self. So I might not call it CAS when I go to uni or sometime later in my life, but these learnings and these experiences have surely just begun!

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