MYP Final Reflection: Chiang mai CAS Week Experience

  1. How did you become more aware of your own strengths and areas for growth?

I became aware of my strengths and areas of growth all throughout the MYP. However I feel like I learnt and discovered the most about my strengths and areas of growth throughout my CAS trips. Throughout my CAS trip to Chiang Mai, I became aware of my ability to communicate and connect with new people so quickly. I had initially gone on this CAS trip with only one friend. Before I knew it, I was talking to almost everybody on the trip and had made many new friends. Before this CAS trip, I had always considered myself to be very shy when meeting new people. This CAS trip has enabled me to communicate with people I don’t know more effectively without being nervous. An area of growth that I discovered throughout this CAS trip for me was my leadership skills. I realised that every activity we did, I wasn’t volunteering for any leadership roles. Even when I was with my friends, I wouldn’t be the one to make decisions for the group. To improve this, next year I am planning on volunteering as a group leader.

  1. How did you undertake challenges that developed new skills?

I undertook challenges and overcame new skills in several different ways. To undertake my shyness of meeting new people, I decided to start small. I started by forcing myself to start discussion with my roommates even though I didn’t know them at all before the trip. After this, I went to the next closest person and started talking to the boys in the rooms next door. Before I knew it, I was talking to almost everyone on the entire trip and I had made many new friends. This led to me overcoming my shyness when meeting new people.

  1. How did you discuss, evaluate and plan student initiated activities?

For this CAS trip to Chiang Mai, I volunteered with another student to create the CAS week video for our trip. Me and the other student involved in the creation of the film had to discuss and form a plan for the video. We had to consider different aspects and evaluate different clips to select what would be involved in the video. This is an example of another student and I discussing, evaluating and planning student initiated activities.

  1. How did you persevere in action?

I persevered in action when we were building the school for disabled children, Thomas House, in Chiang mai. Almost everyday of our trip, we took a minibus to go to a building site where we spent several hours doing cement work, planting, moving bricks to help and build a school for less privileged disabled children in the area to provide education for everyone. Despite it being very hard and tiring, I kept going till the very last second we were at the school which is an example of me persevering in action.

  1. How did you work collaboratively with others?

I worked collaboratively with others on several different occasions. Firstly, as mentioned above, I was working in a team with another student to create a CAS week summary video. As also mentioned previously, we had a lot of service work to do to help build the school for disabled children. For this task, we were divided into smaller groups and each group was given different task. We had to work collaboratively with out group to divide the workload of each task and allocate a job for every group member. These are only two examples of many where I had to work collaboratively with others during my CAS week trip.

  1. How did you develop international- mindedness through global engagement, multilingualism, and intercultural understanding?

My CAS week trip to Chiang Mai enabled me to develop international mindedness through a variety of methods. The methods in which I developed my international mindedness the most is global engagement as well as intercultural understanding. Firstly, this CAS week was all about engaging abroad (globally) in local, unprivileged communities. One of the activities we did was playing games and getting some time to talk with local school kids. This enabled us to get exposure to not only the local language in Chiang Mai but also part of the culture and therefore bveliefs of the locals. Despite there being some language barrier between us and the locals, we were still able to communicate using the bit of understanding of each others language we had as well as other methods. This really enabled me to develop open mindedness by getting another perspective on life by someone living a very different life from me. I felt this experience was truly special and one I am not ready to forget about.

  1. How did you consider the ethical implications of your actions?

I was able to consider the ethical implications of my actions in this trip by getting an understanding of how fortunate I am for being born in such a privileged environment and living very comfortably compared to others around the world. It’s almost as of this trip slightly humbled me. This trip really brought me down to earth. This made be more considerate of all my actions and everything that is given to me now. This experience made me consider whether I really need a lot of the things I have today and has led me to become much more careful about my actions and expenses. Every-time I’m going to do something such as make a purchase or take a taxi, I consider whether or not it is necessary and if I really have to suit everything to my comfort.

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