Coming from an academic background that values grades and achievements more than anything, those were what I strived to accomplish when I was a new student in Cikal. Never have I thought that what I gain from being here has so much more value than just being a booksmart student.
When I first came to Cikal, like many of you, I was not used to being trusted in leading my own learning journey. And I think that is what makes Cikal so special. We have met teachers who would willingly ask us about our needs. Which brings us a sense of liberation, as we are able to explore our personal interests inside and outside of the classroom.
With events like Playground, MYP Exhibition, and Community Project, I understand that my learning process in the last 3 years is not only for the grades. But also for finding my sense of purpose and independence. I want to thank all of the teachers for that. Because you have believed in us, even before we believe in ourselves.
And even if there are any of us who made mistakes in our assignments or projects, rather than punishing us for it, teachers always ask us to look back at it again and reflect on how it could be better next time. That, I think, serves as a good reminder that there is always an opportunity for us to grow, despite whichever choices we make in our journey.
Other than the teachers, something that makes the community in Cikal extremely supportive is you and all the support we gave to one another throughout the years. I can’t describe how grateful I am to be able to meet such amazing friends like all of you here. Despite a lot of our differences, in terms of hobbies, dreams, and personalities, we always found a way to understand each other. I’m guessing it is because we want to be accepted for who we are, and thus we accept each other as well for who they are.
I would be lying if I say that I don’t miss our daily interactions in the classroom. I especially miss the little moments that shaped our friendship dynamic into how it is today. From the silly banter and arguments, to the comforting discussions when we were all stressed about school assignments.
Because of all of that, we went from being a group of children who are oftentimes worried to take the burden of the responsibility of our own choices, to being a group of teenagers who can finally believe in ourselves enough to lead our own learning journey.
After this, many of us will go our separate ways. And I know that the goodbyes will leave a bittersweet feeling. On one hand, our friendship will not be the same again as some of you move to different schools and maybe meet new friends. On the other hand, whether you will stay here or move somewhere else, that choice is yours to own.
There is no guarantee that the path we choose will be the best one. But if there is anything that Cikal has taught us, it is that in our learning journey there is rarely a good or bad path. As long as we are able to reflect and learn from the path we took. So even if there are any obstacles, mistakes, or challenges that the future might have for us, we should know that we are capable enough to make any negative experiences into opportunities for us to grow into a better person and a better learner.