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Co-curricular Activities Build Character Essay Example

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Co-curricular activity (Singapore): Wikis (The Full Wiki)

Co-curricular activity (Singapore): Wikis

The Tahan Mountain Trekking Team (a CCA in Hwa Chong Institution ), on an expedition to Annapurna Base Camp, Nepal in 2000

Co-curricular activities (CCAs), previously known as Extracurricular Activities (ECAs) are activities that educational organisations in some parts of the world create for school students. They are activities which all school students must attend alongside the standard study curriculum. In Singapore. the policy was introduced by the Ministry of Education. which believe extra activities for school students are a means to enhance social interaction, leadership, healthy recreation, self-discipline and self-confidence. At higher levels of education, CCA participation may even translate into academic points.

The scope of CCAs is wide due to a nearly inexhaustible list of interests. Some of the major groups include Computer Club, Art Club, Dance Club, Swimming, Basketball and Photography Club. Uniformed groups include the St. John Ambulance Brigade (SJAB), Red Cross. Military Band. The Singapore Scout Association. Girl Guides Singapore. National Police Cadet Corps (NPCC) and National Cadet Corps (NCC). Performing arts groups are also included, with Chinese Orchestra, choirs, bands and Dance Clubs among such CCAs.

CCAs are held outside standard curriculum hours and the activities partaken depend on the nature of CCA. For example, Uniformed groups do foot drills and team-building exercises while competitive sportsmen spend most of the time training and learning techniques from their instructors.

In the first year, the students are required to pick one or more interest group to join. While the choices available to students differ from school to school, there are national requirements for the different levels of education.

In some primary schools, students may choose not to join a CCA. In primary school, Brownies are likened to junior Girl Guides.

There is a wide choice of CCAs in schools, for which students can sign up based on their interest and ability.

In secondary schools, CCAs are treated more seriously. Belonging to a Core CCA is compulsory, and the students may choose a second CCA if they wish. At the end of the fourth/fifth year, 1 to 2 'O' Level points are removed from the examination aggregate (a lower aggregate indicates better marks). Although the marks are few, it is believed by many that they may make a difference when the students are considered for the most popular tertiary school courses. For example, to enter RIJC via the 'O' Levels requires a perfect score as well as removal of points. In addition, as the students are in their early teens, they are given some responsibilities. Red Cross and SJAB members, for example, are often required to render first aid at public events. Most uniformed groups require precision, management and organizational skills, providing training to prepare students for the outside world. In polytechnics and universities (tertiary education institutes), CCA records are considered by potential employers.

CCA groups are mostly groups catering to specific interests. Such groups would elect from among themselves a Chairman, Secretary and Treasurer, among other positions. The National Police Cadet Corps has started a few Open Units in the tertiary institutions, recruiting members to serve as student leaders in the secondary school units.

Many former students return to their alma mater after graduation to help impart what they have learned to their juniors. Some do so within a formal framework, such as those in the uniformed groups (where ex-cadets are appointed as cadet officers), or the Voluntary Adult Leader scheme (for those above age 20). Others do so on a casual basis.

Competitions may also be organised to create a competitive environment and provide such CCA groups with an objective to work towards. In Singapore, there are competitions at the zonal and national level. These include the Annual Zonal and National Sporting Competitions for sportsmen and the bi-annual Singapore Youth Festival for the Aesthetics-related CCAs.

Types of CCAs

There are generally two types of CCAs. They are the Core CCA (also known as Main CCA) and the Merit CCA (also known as Secondary CCA or Optional CCA).

Core CCAs (e.g. Band, Rugby, Boys' Brigade. Track and Field, Singapore Youth Flying Club ) normally take up more time and resources and have more emphasis placed on them by the school. Joining a Core CCA is compulsory for secondary school students in Singapore and it is considered an integral part of the education system.

Merit CCAs (e.g. Chess Club, Gardening, Philatelic Club, Library Club) are less time-consuming. They are an optional addition for students with an interest in the Merit CCAs subject.

Partial list of CCAs Sports and games
  • Archery
  • Badminton
  • Basketball
  • Cricket
  • Cross Country
  • Fencing
  • Field Hockey
  • Flatwater Canoe/Kayak Racing
  • Floorball
  • Golf (only offered in some schools)
  • Gymnastics
    • Artistic Gymnastics
    • Rhythmic Gymnastics
    • Trampoline Gymnastics
  • Hockey
  • Handball (played with a club)
  • Judo
  • Netball
  • Outdoor Adventure (usually in junior colleges/JCs)
  • Rugby
  • Sailing
  • Sepak Takraw
  • Shooting
    • Air Pistol
    • Air Rifle
  • Soccer
  • Softball
  • Squash
  • Swimming
  • Table Tennis
  • Taekwondo
  • Tennis
  • Tenpin Bowling
  • Track and Field
  • Volleyball
  • Waterpolo
  • Wushu
  • Ultimate(Frisbee)
  • Sumo
Uniformed groups Performing Arts groups

This list is incomplete; you can help by expanding it .

Note that Band may either count as a uniformed group or a performing arts group.

Clubs and Societies
  • AVA Club (Audio and Visual Aid)
  • Art Club
  • Astronomy Club
  • Chess Club
  • Chinese Cultural Club
  • Chinese Calligraphy Club
  • Computer Club
  • Debate Club
  • Drama Club
  • Entrepreneurship Club
  • Environment Club
  • Gardening
  • Green Club
  • Guitar Club
  • Health and Fitness Club
  • Hydroponics Club
  • Infocomm Club
  • Interact Club
  • Language Club
  • Library Club

In some schools, instead of separate clubs for Language, Debate and Drama (and even Culture), these domains are grouped under the heading of Language Debate and Drama Societies, an example of which is the English Language Drama and Debate Society (ELDDS).

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