Article by Kirtana Devaraj
As this year’s seniors attempt to fulfill their CAS requirements, panic ensues as they scramble to complete last minute reflections and activities. CAS stands for Creativity, Action, Service, and is a compulsory aspect of the IB Diploma. A student needs to have at least one activity for each of the three parts of CAS. It is mandatory to complete a minimum of seven activities, each related to seven different learning outcomes. The CAS program also includes a CAS project: an individual project undertaken by students to demonstrate their leadership skills.
The past weeks have been very reflective for the seniors as they realised that they could have managed their CAS experiences better in past years. Senior Joungbihn P. says, “Meeting CAS requirements while people are busy with IB coursework can be hard but I think it’s important for everyone to be consistent.” Mr. Woods, ISM’s CAS Director adds, “This year the CAS portfolios are amazing. People came to see me this year and honoured the deadlines.”
Regardless of the overall success, there have been some hindrances. Mr. Woods says, “Most of the tasks set are straightforward but some students didn’t do them on time. Some students ended up needing extensions.” Joungbihn P. also adds, “I think it’s a bad idea to procrastinate and leave everything until the last minute because of time constraints.” When asked about his role in CAS, Mr. Woods says, “Our job is to make the process clear and to get the CAS activities done. We wanted students to have a free spring break, so the idea was to get it done before then.”
While this may sound daunting to underclassmen, Mr. Woods has some advice. “Don’t think of CAS as ManageBac. There are so many amazing CAS opportunities like the HS play, ICARE, IASAS, clubs etc. CAS is not as hard as people make it out to be.” He says. “Feel lucky that you have so many opportunities at ISM and use them wisely.” Joungbihn P. also adds, “I think it’s important to remember that everyone needs at least one CAS activity for each of the three strands: Creativity, Activity, and Service. In addition to that, there is something called the CAS Track that people should check out. Do make sure not to leave everything till the last minute!”
Organization and time management are key to a successful CAS program. BT wishes all the underclassmen the best of luck with CAS!