Work Smart… and Hard | PLP 2020 MPOLS

This year I have shed too many tears over clouds than I care too share. I have wasted away hours on homework that did not yield the coveted rainbow. When preparing myself for this presentation I really thought about a meaningful goal to share with you all. My dad told me if he witnesses another year of leadership and organization goals that will not be fulfilled, it would be a waste of time. So when creating this presentation I inaugurated this goal by using it! My learning goal that I will reach by the end of the school year is to improve my ability to complete tasks that are asked of me.

This goal took consideration, time, and thinking. This goal was born from my meeting with Ms. Willemse and company, over frustration with my marks. After countless times of being dissatisfied with my work, I wanted to figure out the missing piece of my learning. After, talks with parents and teachers over the past few months I had come to a conclusion, one that seems obvious and simple. I need to spend more time thinking about the reasons I am doing the work, the competencies involved, and what is asked of me. Work smart AND hard, is a quote which seems to be applicable to my idea. Instead of trying to write empty words and big vocabulary, I should complete the meaningful work that is being asked of me – really understanding the task and the objectives.

Don’t Cry Over Spilled Milk

Over the many units we have covered in the 2 classes that my grade 11 cohort take I have been dissatisfied with the marks I have been given and also the work I produced. I am going to access and deconstruct the work I have done and my epic failures. One piece of work that speaks to my many fails is my Poetry Analysis. This was a test of my ability to analyze text and poetic knowledge. In this test I missed countless opportunities to display my learning and understanding of the subject and instead wrote aimlessly about things that were not asked of me. We were given a class to write and I spent a majority of it pondering word choice. Instead of looking at the guidelines and requirements that were outlined.

If you are looking for a work that exemplifies the art of blindly working hard and not looking at the requirements, just look to my blog posts. Seldom, have I created a blog post that has truly been asked of me. Every time I am given feedback I see the same remarks, this post is a great reflection of the tasks given, but fails to show the expectations in basecamp. Instead of correcting the same mistake I fall victim to habit. It is a harsh pill to swallow to have spent hours on an assignment but failed because I didn’t talk the time to look at basecamp.

Here is a great example of one of these posts:

Put the Kayaks Away.

Forget about marks. Even though I have talked a lot about marks, this means and is applicable to much more than marks. I related it to my work at the Kayak Shop. Put the Kayaks Away. This is a simple task that at face value takes only a little muscle and patience. What are they really asking for? Not just the kayaks, to be a rainbow in real life, it is sweeping the mess, cleaning the kayaks, closing up properly, and washing the wetsuits. People love when you really understand what they want and need. Another example is putting away the groceries. In my early years I thought it meant grab the bags out of the car, leave the door open, and drop them on the front porch. But I am missing the assignment by a mile. What I am really being asked to do is: Grab the bags, close the door, and put groceries in the fridge. This understanding is applicable and important after school as well.

Applying My Learning.

This year, I have promised myself it will be different. No more empty goals, and pointless work. To make sure this goal doesn’t go down the drain like the rest, I plan to put in place a system I have grown quite fond of. In PGP I read a book called Atomic Habits. This book taught me the cardinal rules of adopting a habit and strategies to do so. Before each project, assignment, and homework, I will go to basecamp, and think about how and why I will complete this task. To make sure I stay true, I will use a few of many systems I have learned. Some of my favorites are: After ___ I will _____, habit stacking, and habit contracts.

Another goal I am interested in is reading. I have contracted with myself to read 2 books by the end of the school year. This is in hopes of inspiring myself to read more and support my milestone goal. The more text I read the better my comprehension, speed, and ability to identify text and objectives become. As you can probably tell, my parents dig this goal!


The Pot at the End of the Rainbow.

I came to a realization this year, after being dissatisfied and frustrated with my work and results. I realized I was approaching my work incorrectly. It was not due to the effort or laziness but the silent killer, attention to detail. I have identified my objective already and have used systems from my learning this year, to implement and solidify my goal. While coming to this objective I learned many valuable lessons. Firstly, I now appreciate communication. If not for my meetings and communication with my teachers I would not have understood my shortcomings and flaws. I also realized how important having an open and interested mindset is. For the majority of my first term, I was frustrated and annoyed by my grades, and did not fully think about the why. By thinking it through and communicating I was able to find the pot at the end of the rainbow.

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