This was an activity that I was very familiar with but it was the first time that I had actually volunteered for it. Bal mela is an event that is hosted every year by fountainhead school for underprivileged kids so that they can enjoy a few pleasures of life that they are not as fortunate to experience as us. This year I volunteered for the category of running stage. The running stage team created a playlist on which we made the underprivileged kids dance. It was quite a workout and we also had to spontaneously create steps which require a lot of creativity on our part.
There were a lot of kids, more than 1000 maybe and it was really difficult trying to handle them, However we took it as a challenge and in the end we did manage to handle all the kids. We had a strong team work, and we had to collaborate because the kids had to follow our steps for which all of us had to do the same steps. That I felt was the most difficult part because I was in the crowd with the kids and the others were on the stage so my friend Kripa and I thought of a solution in which one would stand facing the stage and the other would have their back facing the stage. That way we could effectively copy all the steps that were being done on the stage and simultaneously keep the kids engaged. This way I also developed the problem solving skill in me. Dance was already my strength but doing dance on the spot was something I learned. I had to be careful as to interact with all the kids so that none of them would feel left out and also because we were the privileged ones we had to be careful so as to not hurt the kids’ sentiments by showing off (even if it was done unconsciously. E.g. through our clothes or our difficult steps).
I learned a lot from this fest and seeing the display of talent in those kids really made me question my own paradigms and taught me that those kids are not fragile and I shouldn’t treat them like they are because they are just as strong as any privileged kid I have met. In the end the smile on the kids face made me really happy because it told us how much they enjoyed the mela; it warmed my heart knowing that all of our efforts had paid off.
Some of my friends and I had volunteered to help SCHM on their first ever hosted Marathon. We were supposed to work on the pit stop and provide the runners with energy drink and water. When we reached on our pit stop it was nothing compared to what we had imagined.
Our Pit Stop
There were just tables and water bottles that were provided but we were so fascinated by the idea of being a part of the marathon and helping people that it did not matter to us anymore.
It made me really happy when I saw the first runner approaching and the feeling of helping people and doing something good was overwhelming. We weren’t just providing them with water but were motivated them, clapping for them, hooting and were cheering for almost every runner. As a welcome they cheered and thanked us back.
I definitely learned multitasking as we had to open the water bottle caps as well as provide water to the runner which had to be quick. This also made us realise the importance of teamwork as when we started working collaboratively and divided the work, it not only decreased the time that took to do the work, but also the efforts.
We also had to show commitment to the task as we had to stand there for about 2 hours which also bought thoughts of quitting but knowing that it wasn’t ethical for us to opt out of the activity we had chosen and also the commitment of the runners to complete the race kept us going.
There were runners who were 70-80 year old and there was also a blind runner. Seeing them run in the marathon made my mind boggle and that also set a live example for me of how passion cannot be affected due to any limitations. It extremely motivated me to not be lazy for things I am passionate about and make an effort to work hard in other to achieve success. All in all, I am grateful that something like CAS exists which encourages me to explore and participate in such events.
Garba fest was an event organised by two of my colleagues and I was the head of the decorations department along with Avina. I was very happy to be in the decorations department as I love doing the same but it was one big responsibility as the main glam of the event would be the decorations.
One Photo booth and me
There was a lot of work to be done from preparing the photo booth to the lightings of the venue which was a challenge to coordinate with academics . Avina and I had to work collaboratively to ensure that the work is done on time. But because of less experience our planning did not go right due to which Naomi( another volunteer) and I had to work on the photo booth for the whole day on the main day which was hectic.
This definitely taught me time management and gave me experience of how things are managed which will help me in future as well.
Moreover it was the first time I had to talk by myself to several dealers of different things which again increased my knowledge in the field. It made me realise the strength I have in the field of event management and made me want to participate in more such events.
Rangoli made by us
We found ourselves pondering for a solution to the social issue of global significance : Wastage of food. A lot of food was wasted on that day because not many people consumed the food. We thought about what we could do with the food; give it away to someone who needs it and thankfully our school also has a compost system.
The outcome of all the hard work and time we had put in was great. Not only I was proud and happy with the beauty the venue had but other as well who appreciated me and Avina. In the end everyone enjoyed the whole event by doing garba in the beautiful atmosphere that was created.
This was my first CAS trip . We went to Janki Van – a new botanical garden ,there we planted saplings of “mehendi”.This was completely new for me as I’ve never done plantation before. I thought that the activity will be fun but I actually found that the activity was not only fun but at the same time It was tough work to do. I learnt many things from this experience such as working collaboratIvely ,as we were divided into teams.so we were also divided into groups like I was given 2 jobs 1st one to bring the plants from one place to other and the other job was to plant the saplings in the ground and pack them tightly with sand. I completed the assigned work on time and didn’t hurt others while doing any task . I felt that I was out of my comfort zone as this was a very tiring activity and I’am not used to do such lot of work regularly so it was difficult for me. I think the benefits of this is that one can know his real strength . I also found my weakness as I was lacking stamina. I got tired very soon .
My efforts made the place green which was for a good cause my effort also helped the people working over there and also the efforts which I made helped me to built up stamina .I enjoyed the cas trip very much as It was a worth experience .It was something which I’ve never done before and from the trip I learned how to work In such conditions how to help people how to plant etc.It was very challenging for people like me as I’ve got very low stamina I am a very lazy person so working like this in rain and under hot sun was very difficult. The thing which motivated me a lot was the environment there was the cause behind the cas trip which was making the place green .Everybody was involved In the activity no one was sitting ideal this was just because of our ma’am who was constantly motivating us to do our work this made us more enthusiastic . And all the friends were helpIng each other and if one was not able to do a certain kind of job others were there for him .
The skills which I developed was working collaboratively , I was able to know my strengths in doing this kind of work. I was also able to undertake the challenges as the weather out there which was rainy and sunny at the same time and still we were doing our job.I was also able to put lot efforts for making the place green . I was also able to follow my ethics as In the whole trip I didn’t hurt anyone and helped the people out there as much as I was able too. The highlight of the whole trip was the fun which we had during the trip the pain which we gone under during the plantation activity . There were many thing during the whole trip which surprised me which were the beautiful green field ,people working so collaboratively the vast vast field there at the end I would like to say that It was very lovely trip and the experience was worth enough to train me how to tackle further situations in life .
My classmates were planning to go to gym and as I’ve never done gymming before and so I joined them .I did this activity for 6 months .This was a new and worth experience for me .In this period of six months I worked very hard. I went through intensive training which was very challenging as it tested my determination as well as my patience.In this period of six months I learnt many skills such as identifying own strength and weakness as in the starting I was not able to even do 2 sets of dumbbells as my muscles were too weak and then later I was able to convert my weakness into my strength after a long period of 6 moths and now I can do 7 sets of the same dumbbells roll.The training part was very tough and challenging as we were required to increase weights of the dumbbells ,leg extension etc ,in every 2 days of gymming .The only way by which we survived was showing determination towards our activity.This activity had a huge impact on my daily routine as I was asked to wake up by 6 o’clock then undergo extensive training then eat healthy food, etc .This all really helped me in developing my muscles . I also learnt some new skills like doing squats on one leg,pull -ups, chin-ups,etc .The highlight of the activity was that the activity was tough enough and at the same time it was fun as I was with our friends and also I was able to learn new things about exercise and diet from my supervisor and friends.
Dancing is one of my hobbies and always been passionate about this activity as it is a stress buster for me. I have always wanted to join dance classes to learn new dance forms, however Hip-Hop is the dance form that I am more passionate about and loved doing it but never got a chance to learn this dance form from an expert. So I joined Dance Classes in my school. We leant 2 dance forms Hip-Hop and Contemporary. Attending these dance sessions have always made me feel fresh and made me feel more energetic. I managed attending the dance classes for 2 days a week for more than 3 months with my regular school. These dance classes have helped me in many ways like developing new skills and improve my previous dancing skills.
Learning Hip-Hop and a new dance form Contemporary has improved my body posture, also helped me get control over my body while dancing and by attending these dance sessions my body has also become more flexible. By joining the dance sessions I have started enjoying dance more than ever and now I can feel the intensity of these dance forms. By learning these dance forms I have also improved my stamina because dancing continuously requires a lot of stamina and especially dances like hip-hop need a lot of stamina because it is a very energetic dance.
In theses dance sessions I also learnt a new dance form Contemporary which helped me to get more balance and focused. I didn’t like Contemporary just because I thought it was a very boring dance form. However after learning this dance form I loved it because it helped to get more balance and focused. As this was my first time, learning this dance form was a very big challenge because this dance form is quite hard, but after learning this dance form I felt very energetic and flexible.
We performed our dance in “Kalakriti” which was an Arts event were we students performed on stage in front of our parents. As this was a stage performance in front of such a huge audience it needed true commitment and dedication. Sometimes during the practice we were supposed to come early to the school and we did that. This is where I was committed towards the activity that I was doing. To have a great performance we had to cooperate with each other to have a synchronized dance performance as we had a group of around 13-15 students, and this helped me in interacting with students from different grades which improved my communication skills.
Dancing one of the mediums through which I can express myself when I am out of words and I have become more expressive due to dancing. Dancing gives me extreme happiness and immense pleasure, every time I dance I get to know a new side of me and dancing has brought grace in my moves and clarity in my steps.
I was selected for an U-16 Inter-State Gujarat Football Tournament which was held in Olive Green International School Ahmedabad. I was feeling very enthusiastic and was looking forward for the tournament. As it was a long time since we played as a team in a tournament, we lacked coordination. I was self-assured that I would perform to my best ability, however, as football is a team game it is necessary for all the teammates to have practiced together instead of each being
We played our first match against Podar International School who were last year’s champions of this tournament.The pressure was at its peak because our match was the opening match and for the first time I got an opportunity to be the Vice Captain of the team. We(captain, coach and I) had a difficulty deciding the lineup for the game. The difficulty was mainly because all of us had contradicting views and consumed a lot of time, however after a long discussion we came up with the starting lineup. I learnt to accept differences and others point of view which i wouldn’t have learnt if i would not have participated in this championship.
We lost the match 3-0, however, I was satisfied with my performance throughout the game. However I was quite happy with my and the whole team’s performance. We had several attempts at scoring goals but missed by mere inches. Coordination and communication seemed to be the major reasons for us to lose this match. I think that I gave my 100% in the whole game, I was making many passes and was playing in the whole ground however I feel I was able to execute all the techniques that I had practised effectively before the match, nonetheless, I was able to identify mistakes and where to improve (long passes and heading in defence). We lost our first match. However, even before the match had begun, we were aware of their strengths and knew they had a greater chance at winning, but still we didn’t show that and planned on showing the best that we had.
Through all this, I have experienced playing against a strong team, accepting failure and managing a team. Managing a team isn’t easy when you are also a part of that same team, many issues rise up as this was my first time. This tournament gave me an insight into how you can manage and collaborate equally with teammates. Also a new thing that i leant was working collaboratively with my team mates.
Team Photograph before the match
The Government of India had initiated to build an artificial forest which was named “Janki Van” and we had to plant saplings in that area. We started our journey at 7 in the morning and left the city by school bus. We reached the place of plantation at around 10.30 AM and started to work after a short tour of the whole project.
It was the first time I was planting saplings and found that it is not as simple as it seems. Planting saplings was quite difficult and I had to get out of my comfort zone to do so. I thought it would be really fun and easy, but no it wasn’t. We had to dig in some places and sow the plant there. We also had to carry the plants from one place to another which was a bit tiring. As I did this activity first time in my life, it was completely uncomfortable for me to plant the saplings. Putting all dirty, wet, soiled saplings under the ground and then cover it with sand was quite unhygienic and awkward for me.
I thought this activity might be boring however it wasn’t. I quite enjoyed it. The reason behind my participation in this activity was to expose myself to a different subject; which was the plantation. My aim of going to the trip was to gain knowledge the way farmers work, what are the processes they use to plant the saplings, do they use pesticides or chemical fertilizers etc. This helped me to explore an agricultural aspect. I learned many things about myself after doing this activity including my strengths and weakness and where I need to improve. The strength I noticed about me was endurance; I worked for 5 hours without much tiredness. As I mentioned earlier,for this activity i had to step out of my comfort zone which became a great weakness of mine while doing the activity. However, I felt good, after doing this activity I would like to be more open-minded towards different things and conditions.
Without collaboration, we could not do this activity. Our coordination helped us to plant nearly 100 plants, It was a great pleasure after doing so. I was the person who had never planted one tree in my whole life and suddenly planting these many trees was an honor itself. So therefore YES, this was a successful activity.
We travelled to a beautiful place called Naggar which was located near Himalayas. This was your first CAS trip. The place where we stayed did had numerous stories of ancient times. The beauty of snow in Manali added up the enthusiasm and fun we had. However the thing which terrified me before the trip was the cold weather. Although after going there, chillness didn’t bother me that much, thus I could do activities with a lot of ease.
We did explore different ancient temples and paintings which made us know about the existence of creativity in those times. While this trip I could identify a strength of mine that I could easily trek for 2-3 hours without any hesitation which really helped me on this trip. However, the only weakness which I faced in the trip was laziness, at morning while waking, restricted me to be on time for distinct activities. It is a great frailty on which I need to work upon in order to use time effectively. Waking late restricted me to be on time for distinct activities. It is a great frailty on which I need to work upon in order to use time effectively. Skiing was one of the greatest challenges for all of us. Skiing was something we don’t do customarily and personally I never did skiing so this was a new activity for me. However, the expertise provided by them made me and my friends do a very good job in skiing which made this trip more interesting and adventurous.
We were 30 people travelling together, we needed to make sure that we needed to work with a lot of coordination and without any conflicts among us. Keeping this in mind, we coordinated and adjusted with each other while travelling by bus and train, while choosing rooms for staying, trekking etc which really helped all of us to stay peacefully. Furthermore, the main focus for me of this trip was to enjoy the nature and treks. So it was compulsory to stay away from gadgets and, therefore, our school didn’t allow us to bring any type of gadgets especially, mobiles. So I didn’t bring a mobile phone and enjoyed the beauty of nature. Additionally, I also did not throw any type of garbage on the road in the whole trip which helped me to save the nature. I could also get an opportunity to know local people of Naggar and their lifestyles which helped me in developing my communication skills. Overall, this trip was a great success because due to this activity I could identify my numerous strengths and some weaknesses to work upon.
New things are always welcomed in my life, provided that they are exciting. Learning French as a language definitely was. Initially I chose French because I couldn’t handle Hindi, but after a month I really started liking the language but what really made me fall in love with this language was the ISA trip. This activity included creativity as I took part in activities that needed me to be creative like singing. I decided to sing my song without the karaoke and therefore had to think of variations to add that could obscure the need for an instrumental background.
In the school we did have a lot of exposure to the language but after going over there and hearing strangers speak in French and trying to grasp their pronunciations, made me want to be able to talk that way in French too. The fest included several activities but I choose to take part in an activity that was in my comfort zone, Singing. However it didn’t quite turn out to be very comforting at all because I had to but in monstrous efforts to learn the lyrics and get my pronunciations right. I had always known that singing was my strength but singing a French song was a real challenge. Therefore for about a month prior to the fest I tried really hard to perfect my song and was dedicated to it. I am glad that I was because it made me win the competition. During the month that I was practicing I realized that I was good at mimicking accents, which I skilfully used to my advantage to try and perfect my pronunciations. I am really glad that I didn’t back out from this challenge because it really helped me learn the French pronunciations better, not only for songs but for my academics too.
While planning for the trip my group had only decided for specific activities that we were going to take part in however when we reached there the thrill of ambiance of the fest made us took part in spontaneous activities like face painting and Tableau. It was really fun but it did require a lot of collaboration on our part as we had really less time to decide our strategies. We required collaboration in setting up our stall and I have to say that I have never seen a better display of teamwork in my life. And that mixed with the fitting name of the fest “romance”, made me fall in love with the language of love itself.