Welcome back everybody. You are getting lucky this week. 2 blog posts and 1 still to come tomorrow! Lots and lots of content. Last blog post was about our latest scimatics project, but this one will be talking about our latest humanties project entitled GOLD!. And please note that its written in all caps, so everytime it is mentioned out loud it absolutely HAS to be said like that. Just an important note. Now you may have guessed by the title of our project, that this project will be primarily focused on gold, or more specifically gold rushes. A popular rush in BC was the Cariboo Gold Rush which we analyzed, and along the way learned about towns like Barkerville and how these places contributed to the creation of the province of British Columbia. When I was younger I had heard of these gold rushes, but I had never really dug deeper into the topic. I came into this project with almost no prior knowledge about the gold rushes except common facts. I was a bit scared that since I had never really expanded into the topic, I would have lots of information thrown at me and I didn’t know if I could handle remembering it all. With every project, even if I don’t really like it, I try to go in with an open mind because you never know what the outcome might be. There are many projects that I have ended up enjoying immensely, but I really didn’t like in the beginning. With this, we dove into our first milestones.
MILESTONE 1 & 2
Of course all our projects have a driving question. For this project this was ours:
“How did gold shape a province and its people?”
Milestone 1 was all about making sure we understand why we were studying this topic. A folder in Basecamp explained it all, as were were introduced to the myths of an old lost city made of complete gold, El Dorado. This segued into learning about old traditions of many cultures like the Inca tribes. All tribes we learnt about had some history with gold, whether it was included in rituals or just tradition, all had some involvement with gold. I thought this as quite interesting and it really opened up my mind to think how these cultures work. Before I would’ve thought it would be silly for a culture to give gold to their gods to please them, but learning all of this really made me understand why they do it and just how important it is for them. To make sure we understood this concept well so that we could move onto the next milestone we had to create a picture that showed how we understand what gold was used for in the past and what it symbolizes in the 21st century. We called it ‘The Allure of Gold’.
Yes my picture may be a bit basic and I could’ve covered more white space, but I think what I drew helped me remember what I wanted to remember easily and I got my point across. I do think that the final creation could’ve been better and I want to work on filling the page next time an assignment like this comes along. Moving on, Milstone 2 was all learning about places that were important in the gold rush. I mentioned one place earlier, Barkersville, which is a popular name even to this day because it was known as something called a boom town, where lots of gold was found and many fortunes were made. We were put into groups and were told to make an interactive map on google earth of 25 places we thought were important to the gold rush. Asha, Ben, Finn, Jude, and Julia were my group, and we divided up 5 sources that were given and complied a pages doc with all the places we decided on.
Benjamin then made a project on google earth, and I put all the places in with their descriptions. I think Ben, Asha and I contributed to this map the most, and I feel I did a pretty good job on my part. Of course there’s always room for improvement and I’m not trying to brag, but I really like the way I handled this assignment. Here’s a visual of what the map looked like,
Milestone 2 was a really informative one because we learnt about places we were scheduled to actually visit this June, but was canceled due to COVID-19. It was still a good exercise to learn about the places and how they contributed to the building of this province.
MILESTONE 3, 4.1, & 4.2
Milestone 3 consisted of possibly the funniest milestone out of all these milestones. We had to make 2 gold rush characters cards, one real and one fictional. For my real card I chose to do some research on William “Billy” Barker, the founder of Barkersville. I got some real insight as to who this man really was and most of his past leading up to him staking gold in an area that is now known as Barkersville. However, as for my fictional card, I created ‘Gold Rush’ Gilbert, or Gilbert Geller. A saloon owner in Barkersville, who accidentally stumbled upon a fortune one night as he was closing up his saloon.
This was really fun way to get us kids to do research on a historical figure involved in the gold rush. I liked how interactive it was, and I think I accomplished this task. I could’ve done more research and been a bit more thourough with my information and I think that would’ve brought me to an extending which is a goal for my next research project.
Milestone 4.1 & 4.2 was all about us moving onto our final product, which was a video focusing on one area or place in the gold rush, basically just explaining and analyzing it throughly, and presenting it through video form. Part 1 of 4.1 was going to through a playlist on YouTube called Gold Trails and Ghost Towns.
There were about 20 episodes of this show called Ghost Trails and Ghost Towns, each focusing on an important place during the gold rushes. I watched a couple and one really caught my attention. Lightning Creek. Bill Barley, a historian on the show, used the tagline ‘The creek that broke the most hearts and purses than any other plaster-gold creek in the province of British Columbia’, to describe the creek. This was really interesting to me, so I immediately signed up for researching it and having it the topic of my video. Once I did that I re-watched my lighting creek video and took specific notes that I could add to a story spine that would tell the full story of lightning creek.
Milestone 4.2 was creating the storyboard, the exact shots that were going into the final video. I didn’t complete this milestone which made things difficult to when I was constructing the video. I managed to get through, but I now I know that even if I think the assignment isn’t worth doing, it’ll make future assignments difficult and is there for me to do for a reason.
Its rare for us to only have one stepping stone in humanties but nothings the same anymore so here we are! This stepping stone was probably not my best work, I think it was mediocre and if I wanted to have tried harder it probably would’ve turned out better, but I was quite focused on the video. This stepping stone was analyzing a poem about the cremation of Sam McGee.
I feel this stepping stone was there to help us understand how to capture a mood for our final videos. It taught us how to make the video get through to the person watching, and really interest them, make them feel like they are feeling what the creator wants them to feel.
Our second last milestone (our last being this blog post), you can probably deduce that this milestone would be our final videos. As I said I didn’t complete a storyboard so I decided to write a script for what I would say in the voiceover, and I added visuals that related to what I was saying. I think my visuals could have been better but I like what my script said and the point that it got across and I’m proud of that.
My final video is here.
Competencies are a huge part of how PLP teachers grade us on our work. Our 2 competencies for this project were:
*ESTABLISH HISTORICAL SIGNIFICANCE & *COMMUNICATE
A piece of work I think reflects a good understanding of establishing historical significance is my gold rush character cards. I really feel that excercise was a fun way for me to learn more about, in my case, William “Billy” Barker and the origin of the town of Barkersville. A piece of work that I think could use some work on showing how I understand the competency establishing historical significance is the allure of gold. I know I understood the concept quite well, I think my execution of the picture wasn’t really up to a good standard. Next time I’m presented with this competency and an artistic task, I want to fill the page with things that will help me better understand the assignment at hand.
A piece of work that reflects a good understanding of communicating is the Mapping B.C milestone. I think I contributed the most to it and in the descriptions I think I demonstrated the competency of communication well. A piece of my work that I think could use some work on showing the communication was the storyboard script. This milestone was important for my final product which had to demonstrate both competencies. I think next time I underestimate an assignment, I’ll always keep in mind of this situation where I needed a storyboard that I didnt do.
Ending on a high note, this project didn’t surprise me in the end because I knew if I put my head to it I would have fun and learn more from my assignments, milestones and stepping stones even. Thank you for reading through this really, really long blog post, I appreciate it. Thank you to the teachers for putting up with our silliness. Okay, okay I won’t make you read anymore than you havet too. See you next time for another intriguing, riveting blog post!
Until next time,