CAS Activity: Participating in Debate and Current Affairs Club
In this CAS activity I participated in the Debate and Current Affairs Club. The club was organised by a group of students from grade 11 and was supervised by economics teacher, Gagan Singh. The club was about having debates and discussions on various topics like government policies and world affairs. My purpose of participating in this club was to develop my understanding of current affairs and improve my research and communication skills.
Reflection of Learning Outcomes:
Learning Outcome 2 (Demonstrate that challenges have been undertaken, developing new skills in the process)
One of the challenges I faced was conducting research on political affairs, especially when the topics were really broad like “Sovereignty vs Intervention” and “Is Patriotism Good or Bad?”. When I was researching topics like these, I got overwhelmed with the amount of information which was available on the internet. I always got confused while selecting any particular point or example because I was not sure if it was relevant or even true for that matter. Manier times, I myself didn’t understand some information and had to ask others to explain it to me. Although I have improved my research and preparation skills to some extent, I still have a lot of room to grow.
Learning Outcome 5 (Demonstrate the skills and recognize the benefits of working collaboratively)
In almost all debates, the participants were divided into different groups who had their own stand and perspectives on the topic of interest. This made teamwork very important as putting out conflicting opinions or incorrect information could have cost the whole group. In order to make an impact, the group members had to work together and make strong and valid points.
The club also hosted a mock trial in which the participants were divided in two groups and given a case to work upon. Roles like attorneys and witnesses were assigned to the members of the group and each group had to come up with strategies and action plans to influence the jury and win the case.
Working collaboratively was especially important in the Mock Trial where me and my group members had several preparation sessions to come up with questions we can ask the opposing team and prepare answers to the possible questions the opposing team might ask. Good preparation and constant communication from all members was the key to performing well in this activity.
Learning Outcome 6 (Demonstrate engagement with issues of global significance)
The topics on which the debates were taking place were of national and international interest. By debating and listening to different views that were discussed on the matter, I have broadened my understanding of global affairs. I have learned a lot about different aspects of the debate topic we have to consider in order to reach a fruitful conclusion.
This learning will definitely help me to understand future political affairs in a more effective way.
Some of the learner profile attributes I have displayed in this activity are Communicator and Open-Minded. I was a good communicator not only because I expressed my points and information but also because I listened carefully to points others had to make. Listening to various perspectives has made me more open minded as an individual. It allowed me to make judgements and draw conclusions more effectively.
I feel that this activity was a success. There are many qualities that debating has helped me to improve such as planning an argument, articulating your thoughts, thinking on feet and constructing meaning. I have also learned a lot about different aspects and types of debates. I have significantly improved my knowledge & understanding of political affairs and also developed my research and communication skills by participating in this club.