The year is ending and so is my time as a PLP 8 learner. Before I move on to grade 9, I’m going to take a moment to reflect on the work I have done this past year. I’m splitting the subjects in to three groups for a more thorough reflection of what I learned.
I learned many things in maker this year but what stood out to me the most were the skills that I acquired during the “Constructing Creative Communication” project. If you are not familiar with that, it was a two part project in which we learned how to use tools such as photography and sketching to create meaningful artwork.
In the first half of the project, I was in a group called CARR, which was the drawing group and named after the artist Emily Carr. In CARR, I learned drawing techniques and was able to create work I was happy with. Overall it was pretty fun for me. In the second half, I was in HERZOG (Fred Herzog) which was the photography part of the project. Unfortunately Herzog didn’t go all to well for me. My work was sloppy, my reflections careless, and my work wasn’t my best. At the time, I was pretty confused why I didn’t seem to be enjoying it as much as I had enjoyed the first half. I blamed my lack of success on silly things like the ugly lighting in the school or it being difficult to take photos with a big chunky iPad. I really didn’t know why it was happening but I figured I would catch it in my reflection post, but I didn’t. Luckily for me the PLP teachers are a teeny tiny bit obsessed with reflecting, so I got a second chance to look back and think about why one clicked and one didn’t. Then while I was looking at work to write this tPol I figured it out. So what I think happened…
Usually when I take photographs for recreational purposes, I’ll spot beauty in the everyday life (similar to Fred Herzog’s art) so I found it difficult to have to just create a photograph without inspiration. My photos I find look best when not looking for a place to take a photo, when the idea just comes to me. Wen the photos I took didn’t look good it discouraged me and that’s why I think I didn’t like the project. Now when I have projects I find difficult I push through with the mindset if I try my best it will be okay.
From MAKER 8, I got powerful tools to help enhance my work and give it meaning, and the will to persevere and try my hardest in future assignments.
I’ll start by saying it right away – I’m not the best student in scimatics. For one, I really need to say that I personally dislike the combination of those two subjects, but it’s bearable so I’ll move on. In scimatics 8 I learned all of the stuff on the curriculum from fractions to the Pythagorean Theorem. I generally like math because of its simplicity like how there is always a right answer and its easy to tell if you are doing it right, but just because I like is doesn’t mean its super easy for me. What usually happens with math is that it will be tricky for me to learn how to do it but once I know what I’m doing then it’s pretty easy for me and I’m off to the races. (So mostly its a matter of having someone who I can ask a billion questions to). For science I think its interesting and I love learning about it but it has sort of a bad rep in my mind because is elementary school we literally just learned about the scientific process on repeat every year, but I like science.
In the maker section I talked about motivation issues and truthfully it was also in scimatics, but good news by the end of this year I’m now out here trying my best so good for me. Mainly what happened was at the beginning of the school year I was super on top of scimatics and I was getting things in on time and good grades for all of the first and second project. Then in the third project (laser laws) things started to go badly. I had kind of a bad week and forgot to pay attention for three classes and suddenly I was really behind. I couldn’t keep up and I didn’t know what I was doing and incomplete worksheets were snowballing until I just couldn’t keep up and I did the worst possible thing: I gave up again and did the bare minimum just to keep my grade slightly afloat. In the first project I tried really hard in the beginning but the same thing happened and I was still dwelling in my epic flop in laser laws. Then in the fifth project I decided enough was enough and reached out for help. I got a tutor, which I was super embarrassed about, but I was worth it because my grade came up and by the sixth project I was back to having good grades. Yay!
One of my main errors was not handing work on in time which caused it to pile up and become super stressful and when I didn’t have the tools to deal with that stress it was so much easier to just stop trying but it feels so much better when I do try and I am on top of things and so in the future I will do my absolute best to try my hardest. I also learned that it was okay to ask for help and even though it was super uncomfortable it was worth it and I have no regrets about asking for help. I’m so happy that I was able to bring my grade back up and end the year in a good way!
From SCIMATICS 8 I got math & science knowledge & also the confidence to ask for help when I need it.
The last subject in PLP is humanities. Humanities was the the class I think I had the most growth in. I learned how to write compelling paragraphs and I learned all about the renaissance and the fur trade but most importantly, I learned how to reflect on what I learned. Reflection sound easy – writing a summary about what you did but it a little more complicated. At the beginning of the year when my teachers would ask me to reflect on my learning I honestly didn’t know what I was doing. For example when we were doing an instant challenge and in my reflection I wrote that we were inclusive of all ideas, my teachers asked me to go deeper with my reflection and I had zero idea of how to do that. Over the course of humanities 8 I have developed skills the construct accurate and meaningful reflections.
From HUMANITIES 8 I got historical knowledge and the ability to write meaningful text and reflect on my learning
Earlier in the year I wrote in my learning plan that my learning intent was to “At the end of the year I want to be able to smoothly interact with real world adults and improve at public speaking. I want to get better at remembering science terms by using systems for remembering things. I want to expand my design skills and I want to be able to work well with the people in my learning team.” I feel that I accomplished my public speaking skills (in a non school example I sang I solo in a choir concert which I never would have done earlier this year) and I feel more comfortable interacting with real world adults so I feel that I accomplished what I wanted to have accomplished.
WORK I AM PROUD OF
This is the change engine project (humanities) and I am proud of the paragraph I wrote and my photoshop skills in my triptych
This is the outsiders project and I feel like I did a good job on the reflection of the character’s worldview
This is the first half of the constructing creative communication project and I like some of the artwork I did
To address the driving question (why I feel that I’m ready to advance to he next grade level) is because not only have I learned everything that the school curriculum needs you do learn but in PLP 8 I have learned some valuable skills along the way such as public speaking confidence and writing strong paragraphs. It has taken a lot of F.A.I.Ls and sleepless nights to become the learner I am today but it was definitely worth it. Looking back at all my old projects I can really see the growth I demonstrated over this past year, and that is why I feel ready to transition to grade 9!
Thanks for listening / reading about what I learned this year.