The reason why I decided to title this blog as ‘growth mindset’ is because I believe that everything that is done in CAS is revolved around this one very simple term that hides an enormous amount of life lessons. Indeed, it sounds like one of many boring IB terms, yet this one particularly caught my attention. Its basic description would be to remain open minded and able to welcome new experiences and learn from them. However, the secret is that as soon as you do that, you live your life in a different way, a way in which every good or bad situation is part of your learning and part of your open minded dicovery of life. You win or you learn.
Now what has this got to do with CAS, Thom? Well, let me explain you in detail. At one point in the interview my CAS mentor, Ms. Barud, asked me what the ‘single most significant learning outcome was which was transferrable to any CAS projects.’? I choose Learning Outcome 1: To identify strengths and areas of growth. In my opinion, this is the most important skill not only in CAS but also on a personal level. Why? Because it undoubtedly requires you to have a growth mindset. This type of mindset is all about learning to be better people and improve as human beings. It doesn’t stop there, it also means you have to accept your failures and accept your weaknesses. Of course, it is very hard for any human to accept negative traits about themselves. We would all rather talk about what is good and definitely not about what is bad about us, because then we’re loosing a sense of pride. But the people who are able to clearly identify both sides are the ones who have a growth mindset. That means that they will be open to learning and accepting and getting better every day. CAS LO 1, triggers us to be growth minded, to accpet that we have areas of growth and to allow us to work on them. That is applyable personally and, of course, also in CAS. If you identify good and bad and if you’re willing to work on the bad, then you are set for a path that will very unlikely fail. I am reading a book written by Columbia university professor DR. Carol Dweck which teaches me on the countless advantages of having that growth mindset. According to DR. Dweck, the people who are growth minded are the ones who are welcoming challenges and who learn through them, allowing each and everyone of these people to acquire a lot of skills, knowledge, ideas and experiences that will benefit them their entire life.
The growth mindset is everything that my CAS has been about. As weird and as ‘so not cool’ it might seem, I decided to see CAS as a pile of awaiting experiences and lessons that will help me learn to be a better me. That’s how I see it, not a bunch of blogs and a punch of meetings, for me it’s a bunch of fun.
In terms of Service, Ms. Barud and I discussed about my commitment in Project H.O.P.E., in my role as a house leader and in my role as a scout leader. Each and every role is going really well for me and the interview allowed to recall the important aspects I need to work on. Selling the Hope wristbands in order to buy a washing machine was an amazing experience that evolved from hard and efficient work as a team. I am very thankful for the great teamwork that we have in our project.
For Activity, my main goals for this year are already achieved and I was able to recall everything I did in order to achieve my targets. Furthermore for Creativity, I was able to clearly see the direct correlation between creativity and service. Indeed, one goes with the other in the CAS projects that I have. I was saying to Ms. Barud, creativity allows us to be crazy, to make no sense, to come up with ideas that are not mainstream and as soon as you have that in a team, you have everything it takes to be successful.
Overall, I have managed to keep up with all three aspects of CAS and I am still very committed in all of them. I am looking forward for everything that is yet to come and for the ability I will have to work on all the Learning Outcomes.