DP-CAS eFOLIO YEAR-END REFLECTIONS
Student Name: Lauren Forster Grade/ Advisor Group: Diana Ferreira
DP G12 YEAR-END CAS eFOLIO REFLECTION
|6 Reflection Prompts||Notes|
|OUTCOMES: Which of the 8 Learning Outcomes did you find the most interesting or relevant to you/your experiences? Why?||For me, self-awareness is the most relevant learning outcome. Not because it dominated my commitments over the other learning outcomes, although it did have a large impact, but rather because I feel each other learning outcome resulted in further awareness of myself. Whether my commitments be global or local, new interests or developments on existing ones, they all culminated in extending my self-knowledge and awareness of what I like and dislike. Furthermore my personal awareness of other skills was developed as well, such as insight into how I work with teams versus how I work on my own, or how I do in leadership positions of various scales.|
|WOW: Greatest “take-aways”(From which activity/activities do you feel you learned the most? Why? )||Learning to knit was a useful take-away for me as it was a new experience, as was kickboxing. Duke of Edinburgh and being part of TEDxids were interesting as they presented completely unique challenges. However, I feel I truly learned the most from being a Senior Prefect. This stems from the “real world” nature of the team, as I feel the things I learned about leading a team and working with different demographics are easily applicable to my life post-graduation and my professional life.|
|HOW: Questions that have emerged for you||I wonder how my experiences with the DP CAS program will affect my life post-graduation. I am curious about whether I will be able to continue some of my commitments in university, such as choir and kickboxing.|
|NOW: What next? How will you follow-up? Next step(s)?||While I may be unable to continue some of the less accessible commitments, I plan to use the techniques and skills I learned in other areas of my life. I plan to use the ideals instilled in me by CAS to continue to balance my life through academics, creativity, action and service.|
|SHARE: 1 excerpt, post or artifact related to a CAS experience||This is a photo of me and my Duke of Edinburgh group on our Gold Level trip in June. Despite my trepidation that has always surrounded the idea of being isolated away from civilization, this program was a major highlight of my high school and CAS experience. I think of it as the turning point at which I became more open to my other CAS commitments, and past that my high school life as a whole.|
|SO WHAT: Now that it’s over, do you see any value in this CAS eFolio thing?||At times, CAS seemed like a burden with no purpose. Any DP student can tell you about the stress of keeping up with CAS commitments while balancing our already hectic academic schedule, and fitting in a social life to keep us sane and ease our stress. However, when finishing the program, I do realize how beneficial the CAS program really was to my personal and academic life. It not only provided me with an outlet to pour my energy into as a break from school, and allowed me to meet people I never would have encountered otherwise, but furthermore instilled in me ideals that I have incorporated into the way I live. Action commitments, for example, were never something I was very interested in. Sports and exercise seemed like a waste of time to me which I could be spending reading or working on something creative, regardless of the clear health benefits they provide. After being encouraged by the CAS program to incorporate these kind of commitments into my life, I can say I’m now used to them and appreciate them far better than I have before. It is these kind of small changes that I believe are the true value of the CAS program, as they impact not only my time in the DP but my life post-graduation and into the future.|
Today it’s official: I’ve handed in my Duke of Edinburgh Gold level adventurous journey report, record book, and form. With that, I’ve finished my last level of Duke of Ed and the program as a whole! While most of my teammates handed in their reports earlier, my academic schedule didn’t allow me to work on the extensive report and book until late February. Over the past 4 years of my participation in Duke of Edinburgh, I can honestly say I’ve learned more than I expected about myself, my peers, and the environment around me. I can’t possibly list all I’ve learned, and I will not attempt to try, knowing that I cannot do the program or my experiences justice. Instead, I’ve attached some photos of my Duke of Ed experience for all three levels: bronze, silver and gold, spanning from grade 9 until last June. I look forward to applying the things I’ve learned in Duke of Ed to my post-graduate life, and thank Ms. McTavish for her endless support and guidance in the planning and execution of all of our trips!
Today was my first day back to kickboxing, and after the experience I just had I thought I had better write a post! The first thing to note is that my previous teacher, Christine, moved to LA over the summer. Thus, we were introduced to a new lady today who would be teaching us kickboxing. She introduced herself by stating that she would be running kickboxing a little differently this year… I believe she described it as “bootcamp”. This in mind, it should not surprise my reader that the hour long class felt more like 3 hours of constant, rigorous movement. We didn’t break once, and as I turned to execute my 10th side kick I realized that I was in way over my head. Although I would almost call it cardio bootcamp over kickboxing, I’m very excited to continue it through this year. Hopefully I’ll be able to keep up the class and still make it up the foyer stairs!
Now that the year is beginning to wrap up, I thought it would be a good idea to post a final reflection on my service, creativity, and action commitments for this year. Hopefully, writing down material on how each commitment has been going/has gone will help create some material for an end-of-year grade 12 post should I need inspiration.
I’d like to start with the Mulgrave Pins and Needles Club, aka the knitting club I’m a part of. Although it has admittedly been a bit fractured throughout the year, (rightfully, due to this being the first year of the club and our busy grade 11 schedule) I have enjoyed the time I’ve spent knitting and developed a skill I definitely did not possess before this year.
Choir has been my biggest creativity commitment this year, and continues to be a commitment I enjoy and find easy to keep up. The biweekly practices don’t usually pose a problem due to the fact that they’re before school, and I can still say that it’s something I enjoy and is easy to do with my friends. This means that it’ll be a good commitment for next year, if x block doesn’t interfere!
Duke of Edinburgh has been more prevalent than ever this year, due to the fact that it’s our gold level so the “pressure” is higher. By that I mean the organization and carry-out of the journey/practice journey are more difficult as it’s an extended period of time, and it’s harder to work on as our workload school-wise has increased in size and difficulty. Committing more time to it has made me fully realize it’s importance in my life, and I hope that our trip mirrors the experience I’ve had with it up to now!
Volunteering at the West Vancouver Community Centre might be my biggest service commitment this year, as I go every week. Happy to say that I still enjoy it and am benefiting from working with children! It’s surprising how seeing the world through their eyes can make everything seem so much simpler.
Green Team has been fun this year, and I believe we are making more progress than we have in past years. Although it’s been switched around a bit because of scheduling issues, I hope that it continues to be a part of my school life in grade 12. We’ll see!
I can honestly say that kickboxing has been an eye-opening experience for me this year. As my major action commitment, kickboxing has not only exposed me to a completely new sport but shown me that I have the potential to take up new things later in life and still grow and find things I’m good at. Although some worry that such a recent commitment won’t look good on a university application, where commitment to a long-term entity is the preference, I can’t help but wonder if the novelty of saying that I “kickbox”, as opposed to the traditional soccer and volleyball, could also be beneficial.
Mulgrave News Team is probably my favourite commitment for this year. I get an opportunity to work with my friends, do something I enjoy, create content, and showcase ourselves to the upper school. The only negative comment I’d have on it is that I wish we had the time to make more installments. The hectic schedule and workload of IB really eat up our free time, so it’s hard to produce enough content to be recognized fully. Not sure the plan for this next year, but I’d love not to have to pass on the torch quite yet.
Senior Prefect is a commitment that I didn’t fully expect or understand until I became a part of it. This is without a doubt my most rigorous and academically rewarding commitment, as playing a key role in the upper school is not as easy as it looks. And it’s not even our senior year yet! I’m looking forward to exploring this further next year, and hopefully developing my leadership skills and team-based learning to help the school run as smoothly as possible.
In terms of minor commitments, my view on them this year was that I would do them as extra commitments if I had the time. I actually took on three minors despite the lack of obligation. I partook in Zoom Film Festival, my favourite minor of this year, and learned a lot about my abilities in film and working in a group setting. I was a volunteer for an Oppenheimer Park excursion in which we helped provide necessities to the residents of a less fortunate section of East Vancouver, which was my most engaging and change-making minor. Lastly, I was a volunteer for the Grade 7 Science Fair with Jena. This commitment was one of the more interesting, as I got to see what the fair was like from the “other side” of the judging table.
I should mention yoga as well. Originally my goal was to do yoga throughout the year, however other commitments and conflicts came up. I’m not sure whether to count it as a minor, but I thought I would write about it just in case it does count for something. I think that yoga is something that is great for people who have the time, because it really does calm you down a lot! This would be perfect for next year when stress amps up even more, however I’m not sure that I’ll have the time. More on this next year? To be continued…
Hopefully more to come!
Kickboxing is a new skill that I’ve began as my, (hopefully) major action commitment. Although I’ve only gone to a couple lessons so far, I’m already learning techniques that I didn’t even know existed before. I’m finding that it is very different from what I expected in that I was under the impression we’d be kickboxing “against” punching bags, but we are actually going against each other. Doesn’t make much of a difference, but its interesting to see how my perception of it has changed. Planning on making this my major action commitment for this year if nothing else comes up!
Service Commitment Goals
– West Vancouver Community Centre Volunteering (self-awareness, exploration, planning & initiative, collaboration, commitment)
– Mulgrave Green Team (exploration, planning & initiative, collaboration, commitment, globalocal impact, ethics)
– Me to We Kenya Trip (self-awareness, exploration, collaboration, commitment, globalocal impact, ethics, new skills)
– Mulgrave News (planning & initiative, collaboration, commitment, new skills)
Action Commitment Goals
– Yoga (self-awareness, commitment, ethics)
– Kickboxing (self-awareness, collaboration, new skills)
– Duke of Edinburgh (self-awareness, exploration, planning & initiative, collaboration, commitment, ethics, new skills)
Creativity Commitment Goals
– Mulgrave Pins and Needles (collaboration, commitment, globalocal impact, new skills)
– Choir (collaboration, commitment, new skills)
This year I met most of the CAS learning outcomes to my greatest extent. My first goal, with learning outcome Self-Awareness, was to remember to reflect every so often on my levels of commitment to school and out of school responsibilities. I believe I achieved this to a good extent, adding Green Team to my commitments this year and taking away Open Arts Studio to focus on what I care about. I could’ve done better on this one by taking more time to reflect, but I think for the workload I had I did fairly well.
With Exploration, my goal was to learn new things within commitments. For me, the biggest commitments I’ve learned from this year are Personal Project, (if that counts), choir, and Duke of Edinburgh. From all three I learned many new skills and traveled near and far to achieve new goals for myself. I think this was one of my more successful goals.
Planning and Initiative was an interesting outcome to fulfill, with my goal being to stay organized throughout the year with schoolwork and other work. I think this was one of my less obvious outcomes, simply because for some parts of grade 10 I was very stressed and for some I wasn’t. I do believe, however, that I managed my time in and out of school effectively.
For the Collaboration learning outcome, I wanted to do projects for commitments both in groups and by myself. I’m more unsure about the level of achievement on this outcome than any other, mainly because the commitments I’m in were more small things than big projects. I can, however, say that I did achieve this outcome as I can think of some projects that I did by myself and some with others. For instance, the Banff choir trip was mostly collaboration with all choir members for the entirety of that trip, including clinics and performances. However in yearbook, for example, I did all of the photography myself and that was a big year long solo project.
My Commitment goal was to keep up with all of my commitments by going to all group meetings. I achieved this mainly through one of my major service commitments, Green Team. Having a meeting virtually every week was good for me as it became habit and helped me to commit to the team even more.
For Globalocal Impact, my goal was to develop ideas focused on global issues rather than only school based. I achieved this by reading more newspapers and watching some news, as well as having discussions with my friends and teachers about whats going on in the world. This was mostly in Social Studies class with Mr. Hardy and ACE with Mr. Wilson.
My Ethics goal was to remember to ask myself if what I’m doing is right for me within commitments and within my life. I liked the outcome of this goal so much that I think I may use it next year as well, when I begin IB. This idea of doing things that I enjoy in order to organize my life helped me sort out my priorities and keep my commitments in the back of my mind all the time, throughout the year.
The last outcome, New Skills, had a goal that was more straightforward than the others. I wanted to learn new skills by constantly challenging myself within commitments and my life, which I achieved by doing just that. From learning how to sail in Duke of Edinburgh to learning new chords on the guitar, I believe that I learned more this year than I have perhaps ever before in a year. This was probably my most thoroughly achieved goal this year.
To explain our Silver DOE Sailing trip this year would take a word count longer than I could write, but I’ll try.
For my qualifying journey, a group of fourteen grade 10 girls and our two chaperones- Ms. McTavish and Ms. Augitus- went sailing on the Mapleleaf Tallship for three days and two nights through the Gulf Islands. This was from April. 5th-7th, 2013. For my first time sailing, I can’t believe how much I learned in such a short period of time! The main thing I learned was simply how to sail a boat. This included learning parts of the boat, how to work with different kinds of sheets, sails, shrouds and halyards, and how to sweat, flake and gasket a sail. I won’t try to explain every single thing I just said, but an example of a simple explanation would be how flaking is a technique for stowing the sail in which you pull the sail Aft (towards the back of the boat) and fold in like an accordion while the others pull it down by a certain halyard, or rope. The first things I learned on the boat were the names of the sails, masts and booms. A boom is the horizontal wooden pole that the sail rests on when inoperative. There were four sails on this ship- the Main sail, the Fore sail, the Stay sail and the Jib, in that order from the Stern, (back of the boat) to the Bow, (front). We also learned things like how to steer a boat, listen for emergency calls on the ship’s radio, and identify/alert the captain of obstacles before the boat. The Transient Killer Whales we saw on days 2 and 3 were my favourite part of the trip. They were spyhopping, (vertically rising out of the water), lobtailing, (slapping the water with their tales), rolling in the water and even almost breaching, or jumping out of, the water as well. The most challenging part of the journey for me was probably either getting used to sleeping on a boat during a storm, or just the steep learning curve of sailing. If I got the opportunity to do this experience again, one thing I’d do differently would be packing fewer clothes, and I didn’t wear all of them and it was a little heavy for me to carry around.