Softball Reflection #1

LO # 2

Softball was one of the sports that I have always wanted to try but whenever I think of playing, I get worried of whether I will be able to do it or not. Nevertheless, finally I have decided to challenge myself to do softball for season 3.  Till now I have been to all 6 trainings and it wasn’t as bad as I thought. I did struggle with catching and throwing the ball accurately but I think I am improving. I also see myself engaging with other team members and I hope to learn more from them. Sometimes I find myself in poor position while hitting  the ball but I am looking forward to the rest of the trainings to improve my skills in hitting, pitching, catching and throwing the ball while on other hand, improving our team communication skills as well.

 

Posted in CAS

2020 Goals for Softball

Softball Goals 

I have not tried softball before, thus, it is a new and challenging sport for me.

long and short term goals:

  1. Improve flexibility for the first base
  2. Get stronger and accurate in throwing the ball.
  3. Improving my hand – eye coordination
  4. Get stronger in hitting with appropriate skills.
  5. Learn new technical/tactical  and mental skills.
  6. Try for team A  and SEASAC next year – long term goal
  7. Attending all the training sessions and matches.
Posted in CAS

Service Reflection #3

LO 5

Season 1 and season 2 were really interactive with our clients. It was most of our time that we spent interacting with them and learning from each other. Most of the time, we taught them how to play basketball and floorball and we have also played a few matches with them. Though the sessions were quite short, it was always worth spending time with them and doing healthy activities before everyone goes home. However, towards the end of season 2, the organisers decided to cancel their participation in the special olympics. The reason was mainly because the organisers thought that the games and other activities in the special olympics are going to be little challenging for the AMK Minds and they are not yet ready to face them.  Cancelling from participating in the special olympics did not stop us from playing sports with the AMK Minds. We still continued with our sessions of different activities. Last time, we played Netball together which was something new for me and it was really fun playing, at the same time learning something new and interesting from them. To keep all the clients of AMK Minds and our service members healthy, strong and interactive, the organisers and our service have decided to do various activities from now on and keep the spirit of engagement and interaction. 

Like the saying “sometimes bad things have to happen before good things can” – Becca Fitzpatrick , due to the outbreak of coronavirus which started to spread globally during the Chinese New Year, all the outdoor school activities and events were canceled to minimise the risk for both the parties. Therefore, we can no longer go to meet our clients at  AMK Minds which is very sad. However, our service is coming up with different ideas, plans and ways to improve our strategies when we see them in August (or on season 3 and 4). Thus, we have even come up with our SWOT analysis to point out our specific strengths and other ways to improve our weaknesses and how to tackle our threats. Furthermore, I am actually looking forward to our upcoming meetings at school where we get to plan all the activities that we will be doing when we meet them as this is one of the best opportunities that we can get.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in CAS

Essay Outline

External factors → change religion → changing culture → affects identity 

Concept: culture (change in the culture directly affects change in the identity)

Line of Inquiry: How does Marjane Satrapi show the change in culture in Persepolis? 

Thesis

  1. Religious and governmental power affecting culture 
  2. Change in Society values and beliefs affecting culture 
  3. Change in person itself both internally and externally due to different factors 

 

Topic sentence A: people were forced to wear the veil in their daily lives after the Islamic revolution started which completely changed their lives (culture and religion) and their identity in the society. 

Support A1: Marjane’s real self (with veil)  and her ideal self (without the veil) 

Support A2: marjane as a child used to believe in god and is really religious unlike her parents. This is important to marjane herself as it shows the understanding of herself. However, when she was around 10, the Islamic revolution started → private religion vs organized religion 

Support A3: Abandoning her faith → she was deeply immersed into the war

Mini-conclusion – different external factors can change one’s culture and identity easily with power 

 

Topic Sentence B: People around Marjane; especially herself, was influenced by the people around them who had different beliefs, values, lifestyle and cultural background 

Support B1:  taking away freedom, individual rights, justice and safety in society 

Support B2:changing her identity after she was exposed to different cultures in her surrounding → Austria 

Support B3:   women were mostly looked down upon by the fundamentalists. If they didn’t wear their veil, they were told that they would be sexually assaulted. 

 

 

Topic Sentence C: Mental struggle due to sudden change in cultural environment and feeling unconnected 

Support C1: torn between the modern part of herself and her religious part of herself 

Support  C2: accepting her culture and nationality but had to follow the organized culture at the end

Support  C3:  inner conflict; because she was influenced by various western cultural backgrounds, it made her incompatible with society constrained by Islamic traditions and consequently led to her.

 

Conclusion:

Restated thesis: change in political control and religion, change in society values leads to change in personalities and identities of individuals. 

Insight :  One’s culture is created by external factors due to power dynamics  which affects internal personalities and beliefs in their own culture. It depends on the type of people that we are surrounded by and exposure to different cultural backgrounds.

IO Essay – Persepolis

Line of inquiry –  How does Marjane Satrapi show the change in culture in Persepolis? 

The graphic novel “Persepolis” by Marjane Satrapi set between the years 1976 and 1994 during the time of the Iranian Revolution, was really chaotic at that time as everything was changing due to the revolution. The people of the country  drastically changed from living as westernised citizens to religiously oppressed people. Marjane Satrapi was only nine years old when the Islamic Revolution started in 1979 where they reintroduced a religious state in Iran.Though she was influenced by western culture that she received from her parents, she still believed in God and trusted him unlike her parents. However, her perception about god changes completely due to different cultural backgrounds that she experiences when she goes to Austria. Furthermore due to governmental and religious power, it led to change in their cultural beliefs and values in the society. Her life changed dramatically under the new regime and they were downtrodden by Muslim fundamentalists who took power. Marjane wrote Persepolis, a graphic novel based on how she spent her childhood in Iran and changes she faced living in another country. 

The book being a graphic novel helps Marjane to target the younger generations and help them understand the importance of preserving culture and identity, regardless of external factors. The use of flashback and first point of view effectively portrays the reality that the author had faced as she grew up experiencing different cultures and challenges. Also, a more personal approach is used in order to convey the sorrowful impact of war on freedom. In most parts of the book, including my chosen text (page 131), the angle is eye level and it puts the audience on the same level as the character so that readers can easily understand the author’s situation. On the other hand, the author wrote the book in graphic form where she uses frames of drawing with minimal use of texts and styles; all in black and white as the novel expresses her childhood experiences which was in the past and the use of six – eight panels on a page, so her targeted audience can easily understand. Artistic drawings are also important as the texts in the novel as it shows the culture and the context of that time. However, the images give an overview and understanding of the text and encourages the children (target audience) to read the whole book.

The culture, lifestyle, religion and political factors of the country gradually changed as a result of the Islamic Revolution. Islamic veil symbolises oppression and the limitations imposed on religious people. Thus, in the novel, everyone was not only forced to wear the veil, but also have to follow the Islamic religion and be religious though they are not.  The change in their religion changed their culture as what they believe, value and celebrate changed into something they aren’t used to. However, Marjane doesn’t take it seriously most of the time and she often wears the veil in an inappropriate way. For example page 131 (figure 1) , she wears her denim jacket with Michale Jackson button and her headscarf. She even had two posters of western pop singers in her room which were strictly forbidden in Iran during the revolution. This highlights her desire for freedom of dressing and her rebellious state going against the authorities. On the same page, the second row is medium shot and it focuses on the characters interactions and her dialogues. We can clearly identify her western clothes and shoes but she also wears the veil on her head with her some hair in the front. This shows the mixture of culture that the author is facing and she doesn’t know which culture and religion she should actually follow; the organised islamic culture or her private western culture. Keeping her hair loose in the front shows her position and attitude towards the veil. The first row and the last two pictures of third row is a long shot and it stresses the surroundings of the main character with western posters and her mother in the background. Her mother also wears clothes that do not cover her legs which highlights the family’s desire of escaping oppression.

At the beginning, Marjane talks about religion and her interest in becoming a prophet. Deep down, she was really religious and believed in god contrasting with the modernised views of her parents which has some influence on Marajne’s beliefs(page 6) figure 3. The part where Marjane is internally religious and the external religious oppression happening around her portrays religion as either good or bad. Religion is one of the motifs shown throughout the book and it shows the importance of the author’s understanding of her identity and which religion she should follow exactly and whether she still wants to become a prophet. However, after they reintroduced the religious state in Iran,  everything changed and Marjane was exposed to a different cultural and religious background which changed her perspective completely.  

In Persepolis, one’s physical appearance becomes pivotal. Since women were forced to wear  the veil, Marjane was unhappy with the way she had to dress causing the feeling of being imprisoned and oppressed. Page 302 (figure 2) shows how much she is being constricted by the new regime and the loss of her individual freedom. She had to be really careful and always think about how much makeup she can put and whether her clothes are covering all parts of her body. She could no longer ask for her freedom and rights. Thus, in the image she walks away, leaving her second thoughts behind. These factors changed their Iranian culture which eventually led to change in their own identities and behaviours towards the society.  The changes in their lives represent the external social phenomenon, while their psychological reactions show the tension, anxiety and unrest triggered by the social disruptions. This also reflects how the revolution influenced peoples’ interiority and identities.

It was not safe in Iran anymore. Those who did not obey the new regimes were systematically arrested and executed; fake votes were made for the acceptance of the new Islamic culture and people were taken to the prison. There was no justice in the society.  The change in society’s values and beliefs due to politics completely changed the culture of Iranians. In addition to that, all the universities were shut down in order to open new universities with all the Islamic system and curriculum. The government recruited Islamic teachers at schools; children were taught how to pray in Islamic religion and they were forced to mourn for the dead people at the war by beating on their chest twice a day. Iran’s school systems were slowly changing into Islamic system. On the other hand, those women who do not wear their veil properly were told that they will be sexually assaulted by the beard men of Islam and throw them into the garbage. Marjane’s parents got worried about her so they sent her to Austria to study and live there safely. However, this changed her completely as she was exposed to different cultural backgrounds. 

Marjane was open to the various cultural backgrounds and she made friends with different people who had different perspectives and lifestyles. She also stayed in several frustrating relationships which brought her to change her own personality just to fit into that society and be loved by her people around her.  While her friends had sex and kisses with many boys which was a normal thing in their culture. Marjane gets culture shock as she spent more time in Austria with her friends since she came from a very preserved family in Iran. She tries to change herself and follow their culture which is not hers. At the end, Marjane dives into an unexpected path and gradually loses herself. 

Though Marjane was physically free in Austria, she was never internally free. She was anxious and worried about her family in Iran. Due to the revolution, Iran was collapsing and slowly coming under Islam where Marjane thinks that she is also losing her Iranian culture and identity. Thus, Marjane started lying to her friends about her nationality. On page 195, she pretends to be French in front of her other friends and says that “to be Iranian was a heavy burden to bear”. She realizes what her grandmother told her about being true to yourself and keeping your dignity and feels guilty for distancing herself intentionally from her Iranian culture and identity. Marjane doesn’t really accept her true identity unless she finds people judging and talking bad about her identity in a cafe. On page 197, she shouts at them “I AM IRANIAN  AND PROUD OF IT!” all in capital letters with an exclamation mark at the end, where she accepts her Iranian identity completely. Though she accepts her identity as Iranian, her culture changed. She had to follow the organised Islamic religion and culture in Iran, whereas, she followed her free culture in Austria where there were no restrictions and limitations. 

In conclusion, through Persepolis, Marjane intends to remind the readers of the precarity of survival in political and social situations. The external factors like religion, politics, society values can change one’s culture, thus the author intends to empower women and remind the readers that we cannot change the truth or things that are created by superiors but being true to ourselves no matter how the situation changes is what is important to every individual. 

 

      

   

Figure 1                                                                       Figure 2

 

Figure 3

 

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