Choosing a CCA for my secondary school child

Choosing a CCA for my secondary school child

CCAs are compulsory in secondary school and it can be challenging with so many options available. What are some things to note?

Starting point: Determine a CCA Cluster.

If you have too many options and don’t have any experience in any skills (like myself in secondary school), start first by determining a cluster. Here are 4 main types of CCA Clusters schools usually have

  • Sports
  • Performing Arts
  • Uniformed Group
  • Interest group / Clubs & Societies

Here are some questions you’ll want to consider

  • What skills does my child have?
  • Should he/she develop depth in this skill, or explore other options?
  • How was his/her primary school CCA experience?
  • Does the CCA provide opportunities to deduct 2 points off the O/N level core? 

We all have mental models of each CCA types. For example.. Uniformed groups develop disciplined people, sports are very physically intensive and always need to go for competitions. Clubs & societies are more relaxed.

While we have such mental models, the best way to know is to speak to the teachers in the CCA. Ask these questions to help you find out more. At the end of the day, you are trusting the teacher to develop your child

  • What is a day in the CCA like?
  • What are opportunities for my child to grow? 
  • Any competitions or out-of-school exposure they can receive
  • How do they develop leaders in the CCA?
  • How often do members work with each other?
  • What soft skills can my child develop? Willingness to train hard, focus, discipline, constantly pushing their limits 

While your child may not get their first choice in the CCA, like many of us, this is a good opportunity for them to develop the mindset of doing their best in every circumstance. They never know what good will come in that experience.

All CCAs have their peak and lull periods. Your child will likely be involved in competitions or events sometime every year. So expect them to commit more time and effort to the CCA for those 2-3 months. We should be pleased that they are taking ownership in their work and training hard to do well.

Additional information:

Your child CAN change CCAs in sec2, subject to approval from school. But that may be disruptive. They may even have to start with the sec1s and be slightly behind their peers in terms of skills learnt, leadership opportunities. They’ll need time to get used to the new environment again. Though in my experience, students who begin in sec2 are not penalised if they prove capable to take on leadership roles.

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