Da blog, da place to be. Welcome everyone, back to another 5000 word post. Juuuuust kidding! Unless… Nah I’m just kidding, I don’t think I would have the energy to write a 5000 word blog post, but I did have the energy to create an entire podcast, with a first episode out now! How would I do that, you ask? Well through our latest project called The Greatest Canadian. We were tasked with finding one person who we thought met a ‘great’ status, meaning they were historically significant by making an impact on many by their actions or their creations. They had to be notable, or made an important contribution to society in Canada. Our driving question was actually quite simple, this time around though, which I was surprised by. Many of our other driving questions are complicated, or include the curricular competencies, but this one is straight to the point!
“Who is the Greatest Canadian?”
Great question. Who IS the Greatest Canadian? Well, a broadcasting network, CBC, did an entire series called “The Greatest Canadian”. Each episode was about one person that they pitched to the audience as the greatest. They used evidence, and facts to support their claims and that showed how notable, symbolic, or widespread their actions/creations etc.. were.
Now of course the Performance Learning Program took some inspiration from this series, otherwise I wouldn’t have brought it up, but we put our own little twist on it. Instead of a Television series, like CBC did, we created podcasts. Podcasts are basically an audio TV show, but as much as they are similar, they have even more differences. In TV episodes or movies, you can use visuals to capture the audiences attention, like how when you were a kid, you couldn’t pull your eyes away from the TV. In the podcasting world, if the listener doesn’t like the first sentence you say, they have the power to stop your voice through their earbuds at any point. Thats why creating a podcast is way more difficult, and of course in PLP we tackle concepts outside our comfort zone, so of course we went down the podcasting route.
We built the foundation of our podcast during the first half of quarter one, creating an audio trailer that sums up our podcast and our why listeners should listen. We made cover art, music, sound effects, and listened to other podcasts to get some inspiration. Moving onto this project, this is where we bring our competencies like “Comprehending Text”, “Establishing Historical Significance” and “Empowered Learner”. I’ll take a competency break in a bit, and explain what those words mean, but first lets talk about how I progressed, and what set me back.
I loved the entire premise of the project, which is rare because I usually go into a project a little sceptical. I like to feel myself into it, and don’t really go into it head first because, I mean, thats a risk that may not pay off. This was new for me, being this confident going into a new project, but I think it was because I had really focused on the foundation. Revisions was one aspect that played a MASSIVE part in me feeling good about myself going into “The Greatest Canadian”. If I hadn’t taken my peers critique and advice, or my teachers advice and just stuck with my first prototype, I don’t think I would’ve done well in this project at all. I usually never thought revisions were that important, and as the school year goes on, I felt like I was doing my revisions petty lazily. Throughout this project, I’m glad I caught myself before slipping down that tunnel, because I know it would’ve been a totally (negative) different outcome. I was almost going to brush it off and tell myself that it was good enough without all the revisions I needed to make, but honestly I wouldn’t be able to write that I feel proud of my work if that did happen. Knowing that I did almost do this, I feel it will probably come again sometime soon, so I’m setting a reminder, through this blog post, and through my work in the past quarter, so I can catch myself the next time this happens.
Something that I really thought I succeeded on was assignments like the Final Podcast Transcript, or the editing of the podcast episode itself. I feel like you could tell I put my heart into it (because I did), and that is something I don’t really write about. I am really really proud of the work I produced, because it didn’t just come out exactly how I wanted it too (with a few exceptions of technical difficulties), I feel as though the work I handed in exceeded my expectations of what kind of work I can produce, when I really put my head to it. Here I feel like I demonstrated the “Empowered Learner” competency, because that describes the student as using their tools (like my iPad) effectively, being engaged, and keeping the content I produce relevant. We sat through 5 lectures, and even made a keynote slide and throughout all of that I stayed an “Empowered Learner”, which makes me think about how I carry this on to our next project!
Now, “Comprehending Text” may be a different story. This is another one of our curricular competencies being assessed, and I think at the most I am developing this still. Although it scares me a bit to write this, but I honestly could’ve spent a little more time on this. I don’t think from the beginning I really understood the way this competency worked, so I ended up not really incorporating it in my final podcast episode. I added one part about Canada and its fight to globalize their culture, which I got from the textbook, but that was it from all the other readings and textbooks we had looked at. Next project, I just want to understand how to make room for these pieces, and really work on what to pick and choose from the readings/textbooks. Catch me in the next project just quoting the entire Grade 10 Curriculum Textbook….just kidding!
“Establishing Historical Significance” was at the accomplished level, if I think about it. Talking about my Greatest Canadian, what she does and creates, and what she has done for others, really tested my ability to accomplish and demonstrate this curricular competency. Making decisions on the spot has never been a good trait of mine, so this took me about 3-4 days while making the script as well, deciding what I needed to write about, to show my audience that this lady is THE Greatest Canadian. I will admit, I looked at my script so many times and was like “nope throw this out” and “why am I talking about this again??”, but through all those bumps in the road, I finally spit out a final script that I honestly really like. The most important part is that I feel that if I listened to this episode for the first time, I think I would really like it and probably be convinced. This was the first time I had felt like that, while writing this script and thats when I knew I was on the right track to recording and editing the episode.
The episode itself turned out, again, exactly how I envisioned, but as I said while writing the script, I had many doubts. Things changed, and I had to work around that, but the overall concept and message was there. Now I keep talking about my Greatest Canadian, but have you noticed I haven’t said anything about her? Well, okay, you know its a her, but who? There are many “her”s. Well, I would tell you now, but that would take away all the excitement and suspense, so if you do want to know who I’m talking about (which you definitely should), check out this link below, to read and listen all about her and the podcast itself.
Comment below on this post, and tell me your thoughts! Were you persuaded? Or do you have some feedback? Anything will do, so be sure to write something below in the comment section!
The last little step to ending the project AND quarter 1, was sending the link up above (that contains the podcast, show notes, thesis, art, etc….), to our interviewee. What’s an interviewee? Its the person being interviewed, and yes, this podcast episode does includes an exclusive interview.
This was a nerve wracking step for me, because it finally meant someone was listening to the final podcast episode of “Turn it Up” (my podcast name). We composed a short email, and boom, off it went.
Now, if you want to be in on what I’ve been talking about, from who the Greatest Canadian is, to my secret (not-so-secret) interview, please please please go check out
Turn it Up: Episode 1: Amaal.
I gave her name away, fine. (Still go listen, I promise you’ll like it)
See ya quarter 1, and so long episode 1. But don’t worry, we’ll be back for episode 2 of “Turn it Up”, before you even blink an eye.