End of Year CAS Reflection

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As the end of this academic year nears, looking back at my initial CAS goals, and the eight learning outcomes for CAS, makes me realize how much I have grown and accomplished this year, as well as the ways in which my aspirations changed and veered in new directions.
FullSizeRender-2Looking back on my goals for creativity, it’s encouraging to see that I have achieved my goals, and exceeded my initial expectations. Having reflected on the blog regarding my progress as a piano player, I am satisfied with my success at live performances, and my improvement in pianistic techniques. However, while I am glad that I undertook the challenge of becoming a better pianist and playing for live audiences, it has also led me to identify areas for growth in my learning.Now that I have experience playing live, and have a better understanding of how to cope with mistakes during the heat of the moment, I aim to take a more central and frequent role in these performances next year, as a DP2 musician.

While maintaining my commitment to playing the piano, I am also really grateful 1that I got the opportunity to expand my knowledge of music, by developing new skills as a violinist. As this was a CAS goal made at the beginning of the year, however, I am a little disappointed at how long it took me to organize a teacher and start my lessons, as it left me no time for reflection on the blog. For next year, I plan to take more initiative when pursuing any CAS activity, so that I have time to blog in detail about it, over the course of the semesters.

Screen Shot 2016-02-15 at 8.25.23 PMA large part of my creativity hours, however, came about due to activities and events that I did not plan to be a part of, but felt a personal desire to try. MUN and Bugsy Malone (backstage crew) are two main events that became a spontaneous addition to my CAS blog. With MUN, I demonstrated my perseverance and commitment to an activity that had overwhelmed me the year before. Deciding to participate a second time allowed me to experience the activity in a new light, made more enjoyable by my prior knowledge and new friends. Volunteering for the backstage crew in our school musical, however, was an entirely new challenge for me, one that turned out to be very rewarding. Aside from teaching me new skills, this event showed me what it is like to be part of OSC, and revel in the school spirit.

Looking back on my goals for action, it is apparent that this is the are where myScreen Shot 2016-02-17 at 8.19.56 PM plans for the year changed significantly, taking me in new athletic directions that I had never thought of before. At the beginning of the year, I was eager to try a different form of action – dance. While I was very enthusiastic to learn, however, I did not find a class to my liking. Determined to develop new skills athletically, however, I joined yoga with my friends during the second semester. Rather different from dance, yoga taught me the importance of having a cal mindset and exercising your muscles to remain healthy. It was a very different area of action compared to badminton, the sport that I have been committed to for the past few years. Badminton allowed me to improve my strengths in technical aspects, such as succeeding in a smash shot, and enabled me to compete with friends in an activity I really enjoyed. Despite my athletic achievements, however, I wish I had been able to play sports more competitively, like in SAISA, something I am planning on working towards for next year.

HFKLooking back on my goals for service, I am glad to report that I have committed to “Hope for Kids” the entire year, a feat made very easy by the wonderful kids and dedicated group members. In the presence of my peers, who are so familiar with this cause, and determined to improve it, as well as my supervisors, who care about us as much as the kids at the hospital, it is impossible to see my service as a mere CAS requirement. Hope for Kids has definitely made me want to contribute to other service projects during my own time, which I think would be a good way to develop as a person, outside of CAS requirements.

For next year, I I plan to use all my ideas from the end of this year, as well as any new ideas I may have over the summer, to figure out new CAS goals.

Colombo Model United Nations 2016

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GA3 Delegation

The 19th-21st of February marked the commencement of the Colombo Model United Nations 2016. After months of research and practice debates, it was time to wear our most official clothes and start debating.

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As a part of the 3rd general Assembly, we heatedly debated on our assigned topic for the first 2 days:

 

 

 

  Dissecting transitional justice to recognize its implications, with special regards to social development”

The first 2 days were intense and our debating was polished by the 3 practice debates, however, in a way, I felt more in my element than during those first few practices because I was much more at ease with my fellow delegates and with my country, Belarus.

Debating on a topic so relavant to the current world allowed me to gain critical insight into issues, such as the post conflict states in the Middle East, and enabled me to project feasible solutions for some of these issues. I thought this was a great advantage of MUN, at a time where conflicts seem endless and unresolvable.

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OSC Delegation with our Chair (far left)

Looking at world issues such as Iraq and the KRG seeking independence, solutions seems far out of the reach when even comprehending the entire conflict is a difficult feat. MUN takes a unique approach to these situations – breaking crucial parts of the conflict into different discussions through moderated and unmoderated caucuses. For me, and hopefully for many others, this enables me to look at conflicts in an analytical way and search for solutions. I think MUN is a great way for students to get involved in global issues instead of feeling lost when they’re brought up.

Screen Shot 2016-03-01 at 10.44.03 AMDebating for hours on end about political issues for a long weekend can get somewhat daunting. This made my friends and fellow delegates and amazing support system during this whole event – the fun we had debating, an the jokes we made out of committee made the experience a unforgettable memory to to look back on with my friends.

 

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Day 3 – In our national costumes at Cinnamon Lakeside

The third day of conference was by far the most eventful and the grandest.Upon meeting up at the Cinnamon Lakeside hotel in our national costumes, all 3 General Assemblies merged to debate upon a simulated crisis. we were all seated with the other delegates of our country, where we would offer solutions for the crisis as a joint delegation. as there were no other delegates of Belarus, I was the only one in my delegation.

Our crisis started off with a crack in the Mosul dam in Iraq and quickly escalated to a massive break down which killed thousands of people. Our job as delegates, was to come up with directives – immediate short term solutions – to mitigate the crisis. I felt that this really showcased our knowledge on issues of global importance and improved our critical thinking and ability to quickly brainstorm solutions. Furthermore, the many discussion times we had during the conference also improved our ability to collaborate with others, especially in times of crisis, when effective teamwork is crucial.

My time working towards the COMUN conference, as well as the actual conference itself, has allowed me to make friends from different schools all over Colombo and learn how to collaborate with them and think critically as the youth of this country. The knowledge and experience I gained throughout this journey is truly invaluable.

For more information on COMUN and a new perspective on the global issues discussed, visit:

http://content.educationtimes.lk/print-edition-1/7236-22-years-of-comun-by-osc

http://www.osc.lk/comun/

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Tea at Cinnamon Lakeside