The “fire was already burning” project I just completed was a great success. This project was based on the hit song, we didn’t start the fire, by billy Joel. For this project, we each picked a topic mentioned in the song. We were tasked to become experts on our topic before we had to complete several key milestones. Let me break down just what I did.

One of the key parts of this project was using craft effectively. Craft is an app that I was introduced to last year. I haven’t been consistently using it and I never discovered how to use it to its fullest. The first way we used Craft was to write a note on the lessons presented to us each day. We had full creative freedom for these notes which was great for me. I created my own template that worked best for me. In the first part of my note, I wrote bullet points and took photos of diagrams. The second part was about organizing my thoughts. In it, I would highlight key points, add extra research for me to do, write a summary and then add any related tags. By doing this I created a collection of nicely organized and interconnected notes. Using craft this way in our project has swayed my opinion of its usefulness and it’s something I will continue to write my notes on in future projects.

One of my lesson notes.

The second way we used Craft in this project was by designing our lesson plan and website. For my lesson, I chose the U2 incident. I found this topic really interesting because I had heard about the U2 shot down above Cuba but not about this U2. Using keynote to create a slide show and craft to organize the lesson plan worked great because it let me create a way more interactive webpage than if I was using my blog or pages. My presentation of my lesson to the class went really well and I felt like I succeeded in helping them understand just how significant the U2 incident was. The second part of this lesson plan was creating a web page in Craft that would hold it. During my creation of the page, I learned a few more craft tricks which helped make the page visually appealing. A major part of this page was creating a video that would summarize my topic and introduce the teacher to my web page. My process of creation for this video was interrupted by my ski team trip to the high school provincials. This meant I had to create and film my video by myself. Everything worked out well in the end and using a green screen was a great addition to our class’s final products.

My web page

The hardest part of this project was finding an interview surrounding my topic. The U2 incident happened in 1960, which is 63 years ago. Anyone who would have a valuable story about the incident would have to be at least 20 when it happened, which meant they would be 83 today. Luckily I found an interview in my own family. Although my dad was not alive at the time of the incident, his uncle and dad both were. My grandfather was a Canadian diplomat and had first-hand experiences of just what kind of mayhem the incident created. My great uncle’s story is a perfect warning of the damage the proxy wars created, something that was directly related to the Cold War and therefore the U2 incident. Despite my interview not being from a first-hand perspective, the stories my father told were incredibly valuable and most definitely original.

Overall, this project was another massive success for me this year. My lesson plan was effective and engaging, my website was well organized and my quote was valuable and original. My engagement during class met the expectations that I had for myself. Something I failed to do in this project was to find any opportunities to “flex” my learning and I will have to work harder to find those opportunities next time.