Grade 10 – First Week of School Reflection

Today is Friday, 23rd August 2019, and it is the first Friday of grade 10. The most significant events of this week were meeting my friends and new teachers, and the fibs. This week feels pretty much like last year, it just feels like a continuation of grade 9. This week was also kinda stressful because we have so many tests and tasks coming up next week. It was also pretty boring and I can’t wait for the holidays because I’ll get to sleep in again 🙂

Potential highlights for me would be Culturama (if I get in). Last year in Culturama I had lots of fun, and I wanna get into Culturama and have fun this year as well before I get bombarded with all the exams. Some potential obstacles of this year could be exams, mocks, and coursework. All of these things affect my attainment grades in the long run, and they are a huge deal.

Well overall, I’m lowkey excited for grade 10, and the units we’re learning in our classes seem pretty cool this year. But I’m not excited to stay up all night finishing all my coursework and studying for exams. Good luck to me!

Personal Statement

“Time flies over us, but leaves its shadow behind.”

– Nathaniel Hawthorne

The reality of the everlasting flow of time never fails to hit me. One day I will be sitting at home and suddenly I’ll just start thinking of how far I have come from a little toddler crawling on all fours to an almost fully grown adult who makes decisions by herself. The reality of how fast these 15 years of my life has flown by will always haunt me. I always look back on my memories and I still remember my first birthday party, how I had a big white cake with blue frosting, how I had a very carefree and stress-free life. Now that I am in high school, stress will always be a part of my life, I can’t escape it.

“Success is the result of perfection, hardwork, learning from failure, loyalty, and persistance.”

– Colin Powell

To all of you that don’t know me, I am Parvathy Sunil, a 9th grader who is really into K-pop. Through my grade 9 course, I have come to realise that I really strive for perfection, and it is a really unhealthy habit. I have noticed this when I get specific tests back, such as science and math, and I tend to get unhappy with my 7s. I realised that I am only happy when I ace the test, a 7 is just not good enough. This brings upon a lot of unnecessary stress upon me as a 7 is a 7, despite it being a high one or a low one. Due to my constant 7s, my perception is that my teachers expect a lot from me, and they have very high standards for me, bringing a lot of pressure upon me to do well.

Other than a perfectionist, another word that people use to describe me is narrow-minded. This is mainly due to my upbringing. Since I have lived in Singapore for almost all of my life, I am not someone who welcomes change, I am not that open-minded as of now. I have lived in my current house for the past 10 years, and I am not ready to move out when I am older, I don’t want things to change as I don’t like change. Due to this, I am the opposite of open-minded, I am somebody who is narrow-minded.

A goal is an aim or a desired target. When I was younger, I had very unrealistic goals for my future, such as become an actress or a singer. That was mainly because of all the fame that came with those jobs, but now after seeing the tedious lives of many K-pop stars, my goals have changed, and they are nowhere near being famous. When I am older, all I want is a well-paying job, such as an architect or a math professor at a good university,  that allows me to lead a content life full of success. Both of my current goals are very math related and this is mainly because math is my strongest subject, and I genuinely enjoy math. A few short term goals for myself are to do really well in my IGCSE exams and try to get a minimum of four 7s, and also, to get into NUS. The reason why I want to get into NUS because it is in my home, Singapore, so I won’t have to face any big changes when I change schools. Another reason why NUS, is because it is a really good university that is well recognised.

Personally, I think that these goals are right for me, even though they may seem a bit unrealistic. This is mainly because I am someone with very high standards, so I need my goals to be of high standards as well, and I need them to be challenging. I will achieve these goals firstly by revising my math and science units and doing very well on the tests we get. After that, the next step to getting closer to my goal would be to make sure I understand everything that I have learnt, and do practice and get really good scores on my IGCSE. After that, I will grind really hard in IB and keep practising and learning, then I will hopefully do good on my IB exams, then I will get into NUS and have a smooth transition to a well-paying job.

During this school year, I have done multiple activities and services, some of which have affected my perfectionist outlook on life. I did the service Knit-a-Square for the first two seasons of the school year, and in that service, we knit blankets and scarves for the orphaned children in Africa and Thailand. When knitting, you have to get each knit perfect so that the overall scarf/blanket looks good. This service that I did just made me more of a perfectionist as I had to make sure that the blanket I made is as perfect as it can be so that the little orphans who get the blankets will be very happy. There are two activities that I did in this year that really made me more a perfectionist – Karate and Badminton. In Karate, it is all about finding your focus and ensuring that all of your punches and kicks and katas are perfect. With this perfection or almost perfection, one will be able to take the grading and move on to the next belt. Badminton is somewhat similar to Karate as we have to ensure that every swing that we do with our racquet is perfect so that we will be able to beat our opponent. Perfection is key is both of these activities, therefore doing these activities makes me even more of a perfectionist, even though I enjoy these activities a lot.

Taking a step away from perfection, I have actually learnt a lot from all of the activities and school-related events that I have participated in. For my school trip, Ladakh, we had a training session pretty recently, and during the session I learnt that I will never always be in my comfort zone, there will be many times when I feel uncomfortable, but these moments will help me grow as a person, and it actually helps me to realise that I am living such a privileged life where I never really have to get out of my comfort zone. From the two services that I have done this year – Knit-a-Square; and PCF Arts and Crafts – I have learnt that I always need some time during the week where I can just release all my stress and not think of anything related to school. During Knit-a-Square, the knitting that we did always helped me to relieve stress. In my weekly service PCF, we did fun art and craft activities with little kindergarteners, and it was so healing to just see the smiles and hear the laughter of the preschoolers, and it was even more healing to know that the laughter and smiles were caused by us. This service just always made my week and it made me so much happier as I got spend time with the pre-schoolers and I didn’t have to think about any schoolwork that stresses me. From these two services, I have realised that I always need to find some time for myself when I just relax and not have to think about anything that stresses me out.

Something that has gone particularly well this year, and brought me closer to my goal, is my straight 7s, which mostly consist of aces, in both Math and Science. With my straight 7s, it brings about more pressure on me as others expect me to keep my 7 streak, and I tend to increase my standards for myself. At the moment, when I get a 7, it is never good enough, I need to ace the test to feel good about myself and to feel smart. This is not a healthy form of thinking, but it still brings me closer to my goal as this mindset will push me into studying and keeping up my good grades.

Reflection : Gender, Sexuality, Identity

Our previous PSE (Personal Social Education) unit was gender, sexuality and identity. Personally, I didn’t like this unit as it brought up a lot of anger in me and a lot of conflict in our class. I personally believe that there are only two genders, male and female. A lot of people say that sex and gender are different, but they are the exact same thing. There are two sexes, male and female, and there are two sexes, male and female. I do not understand how there are multiple genders, and how gender and sex are different. This may just seem like I’m being very close-minded, but I just fail to understand. If someone explained to me how they are different, with evidence, then I might be able to understand.

Another big thing that caused debates in our class is my statement: “you can’t change your gender.”

I personally don’t understand how one can change their gender. They can’t alter their DNA, they can’t change their genetics. Let’s say that a girl wants to become a guy, how can a doctor possible change their XX chromosomes to the XY chromosomes of a girl. SO when a person changes their gender, they are still the original gender they were, they are not fully the gender they want to be as you CANNOT alter your genetic chromosome just like that. I don’t have that much scientific knowledge on this topic, but this is just what I think.

How have I benefitted from a difficult experience?

In grade 7 and 8, I had this very toxic friend. She made me feel very bad for my good grades, just because she didn’t get good grades. She was also very clingy and wouldn’t let me do anything on my own.

In grade 8, she left me for another bunch of people, and honestly, I was very confused about how I felt. I was happy that she was gone, like reeeaaally happy, but I was also kinda sad, cuz I’d known her for soo long.

Later on, I became really good friends with quite a lot of people, and if I’m being honest, I became a better person without her around.

The difficult experience here was losing her, but I benefitted a lot, as now I am a better person than I was with her around. Ugh I hate her.

Strengths

My strengths:

  1. I’m good at math
  2. Read a lot
  3. Good a Science
  4. Social
  5. Organised?
  6. Very direct
  7. Sarcastic
  8. Good at dance?
  9. Aggressive in sports
  10. Extremely stubborn (strong mind?)

Strengths of my best friend (Kasey):

  1. Good at drama
  2. Good at singing
  3. Flexible
  4. Very Social
  5. Good at Egnlish
  6. Good human
  7. Good to talk to
  8. Tall (good to hug)
  9. Likes to exercise
  10. Not afraid

Strengths others may say I have:

  1. Good at Math
  2. Social
  3. Kind
  4. Good music taste
  5. Easy to talk to
  6. Super smart
  7. Good at drawing
  8. Good at dance
  9. Direct
  10. Funny

My goals for IGCSE

An academic goal for my next two school years is to attain a 7 in English in the IGCSE exam. Ways I can attain this goal is:

  • finishing my homework on time, and not leaving it for the last minute
  • take more notes when I’m reading (notes that are really good and deep)
  • ask for help from my teacher if I need it

A challenging goal that I would like to set for myself is to get my left splits down by the end of 2018. Ways I can attain this goal is:

  • by practicing my splits every day

A goal that I would like to achieve to make myself a better person is to start being nicer to my brother. Ways I can attain this goal is:

  • by saying ‘no’ to my brother less
  • just ignoring him when he’s being annoying

What MIT course would I chose if I could freeze time

I would take the Architecture course or I might take the Quantum physics course. I want to do Architecture because I want to be an Architect when I am older. Mostly because I want to build my own dream house. Another reason why I like Architecture is because I like looking at different houses and seeing all of those nice houses. I have never taken or even learnt about Quantum physics before, but it is pretty interesting. I think I first found out about Quantum physics when I watched Ant-Man. It is pretty cool.

This year I chose the subjects Drama and Enterprise as my subject, but now I have decided to change Drama to Systems and Control as I want to be an Architect, and I think that doing Systems might help me.