Singapore: CAS Home Based Learning

We are just about to end our first week of Home-Based Learning (HBL) as the Singaporean government announced Circuit Breaker. Due to this whole situation, we have not been able to go to school, go outside, see other people, exercise in public spaces so basically we are stuck at home in fact, I had gone out to meet a friend in the lobby in the past few days and the situation was so serious that I got into trouble for being in close proximity to someone whose not my immediate family with the police.

These past few days have been a bit strange as this is the first time we have ever done something like this. However, it has not been that bad as it has been a lot easier to focus on our own study spaces alone rather than being in a classroom full of peers and friends which can sometimes be distracting. At the same time, learning at the comfort of our home has also been quite a challenge as we have a tendency to sleep in or to get distracted with the things around us such as our beds, laptops, and phones with no one able to scold us or stop us. 

We have been stuck in our rooms or study spaces almost all day staring at a computer screen which can take a toll on wellbeing and our eyes. Taking breaks more than we are used to seems to be a way to help us moderate our time on screen. In fact, due to there being no other activity, I can spend up to 10 hours on the computer in a day which is extremely unhealthy. 

Lastly, our sleep schedule has gotten even worse than it would if we had normal school as we stay up even later than normal because we can wake up a little later. Many of us students have been getting off our screens and straight to bed right after all of our class has ended to get off our laptops and get back some of the missed hours of sleep.

Update on CAS Experience

My CAS Experience so far:

Currently, I am on the track of completing all my CAS requirements. Although due to this whole epidemic of COVID-19 especially here in Singapore, it has affected my service and activity as we are not allowed to be within a large group of people. Realizing that I might not be able to finish my requirements due to this virus, I am still holding onto what I have done as thinking it will be enough for CAS. My service has changed from being a local service to more of a college service which still meets the requirements so that is all good. On the other hand, my activity which is Basketball within the Filipino community which is weekly is being postponed due to the whole COVID-19 outbreak, it is starting to creep up on me that maybe I might not meet the requirements if this virus lasts a lot longer than I think it will.

At the same time, CAS takes up a lot of my time which leaves me less time to work on everything else such as studying, preparing to start my Extended Essay, starting my IAs for all my subjects and so on. I just need to be more organised in how I set up my schedule so that I can manage everything in IB.

Memoirs of the Pioneer Generation -> Chronicles of East

Our main goal of Memoirs of the Pioneer Generation was to write memoirs of the local elderly community of Singapore. As we started going to the Care Centre, we realised that there was a major obstacle we had to face which was communication. Many of the elderly community there did not have the communication skills we were hoping they would have so we could communicate. Our objective, in the beginning, was to establish a relationship with the elderly community there which we achieved by playing simple games with them. We would play bingo, throw around balloons, stacking some wooden blocks and any simple motor skill activities. When we realised how challenging it was going to be able to communicate with the community, we thought that it was not the best idea to keep trying when we have been going for weeks.

After our service representatives spoke to our school service department, we were able to come up with the idea of interviewing the school community and their stories on service. Since our aim was to create memoirs or stories, we thought it would be beneficial to the UWC community to make stories on a major aspect of learning in our school which is service.

A setback we have faced was the CoronaVirus which has called our school to stop all local services at our school. This means that our group of writers are not able to talk to Local Service groups in our school. Instead, we decided to choose College Service groups within our school community to interview. We are currently at our planning stage within this whole operation: brainstorming different questions, deciding which services we are going to interview and the timetable it fits into.

 

Memoirs of the Pioneer Generation

My current service is called Memoirs of the Pioneer Generation where we go to a Nursing home and we interview the older generation about Singapore and then we write short stories about their experiences. At the moment I have only gone to the centre once just to see what it is like and to introduce ourselves to the staff and the some of the elderly who stay there.

The main reason why I chose this service is because of the story telling aspect of this service. Being able to take other people’s stories and writing it in a way which conveys the “come up” of Singapore.

I used to mainly work with little kids for service because I absolutely love little kids and being able to make their day. I have many cousins under the age of 5 which is why I really click with younger kids. I guess I chose to change it a little bit is to expose myself to new experiences and to work on my story telling which will help me in film.

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