When it comes to community, CIS is known for its generous contributions to society in hopes of a humble and positive outcome. To this end, students and teachers set aside certain dates every February to aid local communities, increase their awareness, and demonstrate globally engaging beliefs through a plethora of risk-taking alternatives. During Week Without Walls, students immerse themselves in experiences that not only enhance their learning but also motivate them into becoming more respectful, responsible and prepared global citizens.
In this article, the team and I gathered opinions from the CIS student body to capture their different views towards Week Without Walls. This is what some of them had to say.
Due to time and logistical constraints, we were not able to gather responses from the participants of Gawad Kalinga.
Why did you pick this activity?
- I heard it was really fun, and this is my first year in CIS and I really wanted to experience something new and exciting because my brother talked about his Week Without Walls experience last year. -Lea, Grade 8, 4×4
- So, I wanted to do the Pit-os [teaching] for Week Without Walls because lots of my friends were doing it, and I also did it last year, and seeing as how there are different subjects this year, I was thinking I could try something new out of my comfort zone, and, like, teach other people things. -Stuart, Grade 10, Pit-Os National High School Teaching
- Because I have never done such [an] activity before and I wanted to [acquire] a new experience. -Clair, Grade 11, Everlasting Hope
What were you able to contribute to society through WWW?
- Uh, I feel like, maybe I’m becoming…a larger part of society, and, kind of like, branching out more? Like, [I’m] being more open to my community, and helping out. -Dominic, Grade 9, Pit-os National High School Teaching
- It’s always been a pleasure for me to have the chance to empower people while giving them support which I feel is beneficial not only for myself, but for them because it reassures them that they are not alone. -Dean, Grade 11, 4×4
I really enjoyed meeting people. It was so inspirational watching how supportive the parents were to each other’s children and how brave all the young patients were. All the professional volunteers were so friendly and the working environment was so heartwarming.-Ji Eun, Grade 11, Operation Smile
What did you enjoy about this activity?
- What I’ve enjoyed so far is hanging out with the kids and actually getting to know them is quite entertaining and quite interesting. Also, the work we’re doing here is…uh, nice. Everlasting Hope has a good cause and I’m proud to be working here. -Danny, Grade 8, Everlasting Hope
- The rummage sale! I mean seeing people, like, excited knowing that the price is lower, but yeah, seeing people coming, buying, and [me] knowing that the funds we raised will be used to support the kids. -Nicolle, Grade 11, CIM-CMSS Paknaan
What did you learn about yourself and about CIS?
- I learned a lot about CIS. The people are very kind hearted and generous, some are even very welcoming! This was shown during my activity and where I got to see a lot of my peers truly acting on change. -Lea, Grade 8, 4×4
- I have learned that I didn’t really appreciate the time and effort it took for teachers to actually teach and go through, like, lesson planning, and having to get the attention of kids, and small things like that. -Dominic, Grade 9, Pit-os National High School Teaching
- Through Everlasting Hope, I realized I am very privileged to not only go to an international school such as CIS but also, I’m very fortunate for my health that allows me to attend school. This made reflect me reflect on my situation and be more thankful for what I have been given rather than complain. -Clair, Grade 11, Everlasting Hope
I think it’s challenging to sometimes distract the kids from-Ami, Grade 7, Operation Smile
the hungerbecause they aren’t allowed to eat and drink for a few hours. They end up crying and screaming and it’s hard to calm them down. It’s also tiring to play with the kids because they have so much energy. The language barrier can be hard too.
What did you find challenging during WWW?
- I found it challenging that we always have to prepare for the things that we are going to do because I don’t know….we are not used to that. We are not really used to this type of environment. Like staying in the hospital with a lot of mosquitos and stuff like that and with bad weather. I find that very challenging. -Deandra, Grade 9, CIM-CMSS Paknaan
- I found the planning, and what we do for each day, challenging. And it was kind of tiring when you had to teach two groups of students with, like, [little] time to rest in between. -Sean, Grade 9, Pit-os National High School Teaching
- What I found the most challenging was that because I’m Korean… I can’t really speak any Cebuano or you know, Bisaya. So we can only communicate basic thoughts like “Hello” or “What’s your name?” Like, we couldn’t really connect – uh, talk, or have a conversation beyond that, and I think that was the hardest challenge. Eventually, with actions and a lot of, um, body language, we were able to talk it out so I think we overcame that challenge. -Clair, Grade 11, Everlasting Hope
How do you feel about WWW?
- Um, I thought it was okay. There were some really fun parts, but some parts were pretty boring. -Kat, Grade 8, Pit-os National High School Teaching
- Week Without Walls is a good way to give back [to the community] and it gives us a chance to take a step back and promote the IB learner profiles, like risk-taker and caring, within real-life scenarios! -Dean, Grade 11, 4×4
- I wasn’t expecting much, actually, but then, when we went to the community, it was just fun in a way that… It was fun yet tiring. At the end of the day, you get to remember your impact on the kids and seeing those smiles makes you happy. – Nicolle, Grade 11, CIM-CMSS Paknaan
The students of CIS demonstrated a positive influence as a fun tool to promote one another in addition to their willingness to enhance their learning capabilities. Week Without Walls continues to be a show of our gratitude towards the local communities and empowers the idea that each of us is a global citizen who can have a positive impact on our changing world.
Thank you to all the students who participated in this Vox Populi!
Written by Nathan C.; feature image by Katrina R.