Theater Changing Lives

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The set of “Painted.”

The biggest change for me between the school year to summer is that I go from being in the theater 15 hours a week to practically none at all. It’s a hard transition, and now that there are only a few weeks until school starts, I can’t wait to start my last season as an MVPAllStar.

I love going to NYC, because I always get to see at least one show, often more, and lucky for me, I’m in NYC now!!! I already have plans to see several shows this week. Tomorrow I think I’m seeing “Something Rotten” and “The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime.” Plus this trip to NYC is extra special because I’m getting to be the assistant stage manager for a show called “Painted” that my aunt co-wrote, directed, and is performing in off Broadway.

It’s a one act short play that speaks about gender roles and how people should be able to express themselves however they want to. Her play is a part of a big event she helped create where lots of young adults will be exhibiting art work they did on the topic. The project started when my aunt and her friend spoke at her old performing arts school after a the Westboro Baptist Church came and protested outside the school.  After speaking at the school, she and her friend ended up creating an after school program and it’s now evolved into this big show Friday night!

I was at rehearsal all day today and am super excited for Friday because the show is really saying something important. I was running lights and sound after working on finishing the set today, which will never feel the same as actually being on stage myself, but I’m happy to be a part of the show and back in the theater in any way I can. I love the theater; it changes lives each and every day.

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Times Are Changing


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(Disclaimer: this is a 20/20 and the first one in a while, where Kat and I read an article over the weekend then discuss for 20 minutes and write for the next 20 minutes.)

Kat and I read an article entitled “What Happens When Millennials Run the Workplace?” It talked about a lot of stereotypes about millennial’s and how they are “lazy, narcissistic, entitled, addicted to social media, and frank.” There was also a lot of talk about how the environment in the work force has changed into a more playful environment and how old traditions of how to properly act have changed. Over all I felt like the article reported a very negative view on Millennials; however, whether anyone likes it or not, the next generation is taking over and Millennials currently make up over 50% of the workforce.

Society is changing- that is irrefutable- but I don’t think it is a negative change unlike how it is presented in this article. Times are changing and therefore rules are changing too. Seniority no longer determines “rankings,” in fact companies  are now starting to do away with rankings and look at everyone on a team as an equal contributor of ideas; you are given more responsibility based on your demonstration of work, not just the amount of time you’ve spent with a company. This is a relatively new notion that Generation X seems to not be as comfortable with.

Generation X also seems mystified by the amount of time Millennials spend on social media sites. The article seems to make this seem negative, but I challenge that social media can and is used as a good thing. It is a way to make connections with people across the world, and a way to gain support for work your company is doing. Furthermore, social media can be used as a tool to help keep work together and go back and reflect upon how much has changed over time. Sure social media has a time and a place and shouldn’t be used all of the time, but again, the world is changing and if social media is the tool of the future then companies better get on board or the next generation will move on without them.

I also feel a tad disgruntled with the fact that Millennials are always seen as lazy, entitled, and narcissistic because I think this is a gross generalization. There are a lot of millennials changing the world in huge ways right now and doing things completely different from years passed. Lazy people don’t travel across the world to help solve problems like trying to decrease the number of deaths of babies around the world. And entitled, narcissistic people aren’t helpful on design teams making these incredible feats happen. Team and empathy work  need people that are dedicated to working with others and understanding how different people live in order to design for a changing world.

Millennials are the generation blurring boundaries and changing the status quo. We live in a changing world, and when the boundaries change then we change the game and the rules along with it. I don’t even know if I actually am a Millennial because every site seems to have a different age rang, but I do know that I’m living in a time of change and am often associated with a generation that has similar habits to those described above. Our generation isn’t perfect, but neither is any generation, and every generation always believes the next generation is doing radical things that shouldn’t be accepted in society. I just feel that Millennials are often bad mouthed in the way of the workforce, and yet there is a lot of good to come from this generation that often gets overlooked. Times are changing, people are changing, and change isn’t always bad.

 

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Individuality

images-1.jpgBeing a leader is hard. I’m the founder of Kemps Khaos Club at MVPS last year, though we were an un-offical club 2 years ago as well, and each year we’ve tried to improve our student-faculty card game tournament.

This year we set up the “Kemps Kouncil”  to help deal and organize all game times. However, trying to organize the Kouncil to make sure they organize the games is a whole other challenge. It’s been challenging mainly because usually I’m that kind of leader who, when something isn’t being done, I just do it myself to make sure it’s done. However, with Kemps, I’ve really been trying to let my team mates take that responsibility and just give them reminders to make sure it gets done. The hard part is when I get questions from teachers about when they are going to play their next game and all I can say is, “I don’t know, your dealer should be sending you an email soon…”

A lot of times when I’m on a team I end up in a leadership role. It’s just my personality and nature I guess, even in a letter I have from my preschool teachers it says, “When playing in a group setting, Anya prefers to be the leader but will allow other children to take over that role as well.”

In fact a lot of that letter is a surprisingly accurate description of how I still am today, which seems so weird considering I was 3 at the time this was written. I wonder how old we are when our fundamental personality traits start showing. How much do we really change over time? What traits start showing themselves earlier than others? What personality traits are more likely to change over time versus staying consistent through out a person’s life? What shapes our personality?

I feel like in high school one of the most common faced problems is someone feeling the need to be like someone else, rather than feeling comfortable with embracing who they are.  Everyone is an individual person with different personality traits. Some that are praised, and others which show our weaknesses, but they all make us, us. Our differences are what make us unique, special, noticed amongst the crowd.  At a wedding the bride is the one in a different dress. When trying to get someone’s attention you stand up to be spotted in the sitting crowd. In a sea of yellow flowers, it’s easy to spot the one that’s a radiant, ruby red.

For the amount of stress teenagers go through with trying to figure out “who am I?” I wonder what it would be like if schools placed more time and energy into helping students embrace their individuality. It’s a skill that will truly last a life time and be invaluable to success.

Individuality is important to me, and it’s something I see people struggle with all the time which makes me sad, frustrated, and oddly ignited. HMW help people feel comfortable being themselves? It’s a question that’s been asked by people for centuries, so why does it seem that not much has changed- I mean if the question is still being asked, clearly the problem hasn’t been solved. Why not? Are we asking the right question? Are we tackling the problem the right way? Are we communicating and working with the right people?

I feel the designer inside of me burning with questions and a sense of agency to take action in some way or form yet I simply don’t know where to start, so I’m starting with these questions. Hopefully something will come from them.

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The Mysterious Men

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(PS. There are a few spoilers in this post about The Great Gatsby and .)

While reading The Great Gatsby, by F. Scott Fitzgerald, I’ve been constantly changing my mind about liking or disliking various characters. I think that’s part of the goal of the book though; Fitzgerald wants you to see these people as real people who have their good and bad moments.

The hard part of making opinions on these characters is that I can’t personally relate to most of them, and I know this book only captures some crumbs of their life story.

The character I found most interesting was Mr. Gatsby himself. I think I found him interesting for the exact reason that Fitzgerald wants you to find him interesting: he’s full of mystery. His life story practically changes every time it gets talked about.

When first meeting Gatsby, Nick doesn’t even realize that he is talking to Gatsby. Then when Gatsby walks off Nick tries to ask Jordan about who he is, but Jordan’s response is simply, “He’s just a mad named Gatsby,” because she doesn’t believe the story she was told (Fitzgerald 48). No one knows the true story of Gatsby. It isn’t until chapter 6 that Nick finally discusses the true story of Gatsby, who’s real name is actually James Gatz, and he doesn’t even actually learn that story until close to the end of Gatsby’s life. (Not going to lie, but I didn’t fully understand that they were the same person until a good few pages later.)

What I realized is that the mysterious character of Gatsby it common in many books. Most notably it reminded me of Boo Radley from To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. Both characters are very closed off with a  constantly debated and gossiped past. In fact many people suspect them of murder or some other horrible crime.

However, these mysterious characters somehow always manage to be a huge part of the main character’s lives by the end of the story. Gatsby dies and Nick seems to be his only friend to plan the funeral, and Boo saves Scott’s life. We learn that the characters that once seemed dangerous and unknown are, in reality, just complex people that you have to get to know well in order to understand them.

I think humans have a certain fondness towards mystery and particularly towards mysterious people. It’s our natural instinct to be curious that makes us enjoy the mysteries of life.

Starting a Story

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I had completely forgotten that I would not have Wifi for the week of Christmas while I was up at my family’s cottage in Pennsylvania. Therefore, I was sadly not able to blog, but I was writing down ideas through out the week so now it’s time to catch up!

It was weird not having wifi because so much of what I would typically work on, when I finally have time, requires the internet: blogging, twitter, reading articles, researching things, etc. However, it was kind of nice to not have the internet because it forced me to just relax with family since there was no way for me to do that kind of stuff. Plus I got to spend a while reading, which I haven’t really gotten to do in a while!

I love the feeling of finishing a book, especially when you have another already waiting to be read. With it finally being winter break I’ve actually been able to read just for fun for the first time in forever!!!

Back in the summer, which feels like so long ago now, I had started a rather easy book called “Kingdom Keepers” which is about Disney World after hours and these 5 kids that have to battle evil Disney villains. I started the book because it looked interesting since I love Disney so much, and over the summer I had been reading a lot of “thinky” books as I call them because they were those kinds of books that you can only read for so long before needing to stop and digest, so I wanted to read something fun and easy that didn’t make me think so much.

However, I started the book so late into summer that I didn’t get a chance to finish before school started, and then I didn’t have time to read my fun easy book. But once winter break started, I decided I would read nothing else until first finishing that book.

 And I did.

 In 1 day.

(I did say it was an easy book… Those last 150 pages I had left felt like nothing.)

After finishing that book (which is actually the first in a series, so I really want to start the next one…), I decided to start The Great Gatsby since I need to read that before school starts again. Reading this book is actually the only “assignment” I have for the winter break. The funny part is that I self assigned it along with Kat for our AP Lang course. We both wanted to read the book because everyone is always talking about it being a great book, so naturally we got curious as to what the big fuss it. Plus many English teachers often end up assigning it, so we thought it was a book that we definitely needed to read.

When I started reading the book I actually thought the main narrator was a girl. I don’t know what lead me to this belief, but it wasn’t until about 3 pages in that I finally went, “Wait a minute. This guy is a guy. This changes everything!”

My instinctual conclusion made me wonder if we naturally assume a narrator is like ourselves; therefore, in my case that would make this narrator a girl at first. I mean the role of the narrator is to help move the story forward and converse with the audience. They are the one character that always is breaking the 4th wall and typically they can be played by any type of person. This is because who the narrator is, is often less important than what the narrator is saying. So it makes sense that we would naturally want to relate with the narrator as much as possible.

However this isn’t always the case. Some stories have the narrator being a person who is actually in the story, making every narration like a mini soliloquy where the character tells you about how they were feeling on the inside, during or after a particular situation occurs.

The type of narration can really change a story because it changes the perspective in which you hear a story from. When you change the perspective you get an entirely different story. That’s why stories like Malificent and Wicked are so popular, because they tell you an old story from a new perspective, which changes the story in ways that make you question what is the “truth”.

The beginnings of stories fascinate me because in those first pages you can discover what type of book you are about to read based on the perspective it is told from. In The Great Gatsby, the narrator is also the main character, Nick. Right from the beginning you are able to tell that this story will be a reflective piece about a time in Nick’s life where exciting and life changing events took place.

However, not everything about the beginnings of a story is so great. In fact, they are often long and sometimes drag on without much excitement for a while because the backstory has to be set before the story can really get interesting.

The Great Gatsby has been one of those books that hasn’t gotten too terribly interesting yet. I haven’t reached that point where I can’t put it down until I finish it quit yet. So I am still on the hunt to figure out “What’s the big deal about The Great Gatsby; why has it become such a staple in high school literature?”

A World Demanding Creativity

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“A society’s competitive advantage will come not from how well its schools teach the multiplication and periodic tables, but from how well they stimulate imagination and creativity.” Albert Einstein said these great words over 60 years ago, and yet in todays’ 21st century, America has still been in what is commonly known as “The Creativity Crisis” as described in Po Bronson and Ashley Merryman’s article published in Newsweek in 2010. Their findings, based on the widely taken Torrance Test which tests for someone’s “Creativity Quotient” (CQ), show that the American public has had a significant decrease in it’s CQ scores since 1990. However, at the same time that this Creativity Crisis is taking place, leading businesses are craving creative and innovative people, as shown from an IBM poll taken in 2010 of 1,500 CEOs. This disconnect between what America wants in the workforce and what America’s CQ scores are leads to the question of, “How might we raise America’s CQ scores?”  That is, how might we have more Americans that are proficient at going through a process of the exploration and creation of something new? A start would be to examine our education programs to assure that we as a country are setting the conditions for people to be successful. Schools are meant to prepare students with the knowledge and skills to be successful in the world. With our world craving creative people with innovative ideas, it is imperative for schools to allot time in their school day for students to explore creative outlets and passions.

By allotting this time in the day, students can be more prepared to get jobs in the companies that they are interested in working for. One of the “big dogs” of American companies is Google, with about 1 in every 4 young professionals wanting to work there. When trying to get a job at Google, it is helpful to know that interviewers are looking for applicants that go through a creative thinking process. For example an applicant may be asked, “How many piano tuners are there in Chicago?” The interviewer is not looking for the answer to this question, because there is no exact answer, instead the interviewer is looking to see how the applicant thinks through the problem and hoping to see the applicant go through a creative, yet logical, process to arrive at an answer. If schools hope for their students to be competitive in the workforce at places like Google, then schools must prepare students to be creative thinkers while problem solving– even if the problem seems impossible to solve.

In school, students are tasked to learn and mast content which lays out the foundation for the logical side to any process, but there is  another side to this process: the creative side. To answer seemingly impossible problems like those that arise in the “real world”, you must have a basic understanding of facts along with the creative confidence to quickly discern what things you think you need to know in order to arrive at an answer.

This creative confidence isn’t something that some people are born with and others are not; it is developed over time through experience and guidance. Students need mentors to help them develop their creative confidence, and school provides an opportune time for students to receive this mentorship, and not just from teachers. Just like how chemistry classes do lab work in order to better understand how chemical equations work, what if all students were given the opportunity to enroll in a“real world” lab? Imagine if in this “real world” lab students were working alongside business leaders, entrepreneurs, and nonprofits to tackle work that matters. Work that might not be in a textbook. Through these “real world” labs, students could develop relationships with these game-changers that may lead to long lasting mentorship. Schools need to begin developing relationships with members in the local community because this real world experience will build confidence in students, so they can be empowered to be agents of change in today’s world. School currently communicates that students have to wait to make a difference. They have to wait to be told what to do. They have to wait to get their graded test back. What if we didn’t want to wait?

Some schools already have programs set in place to allow students school time to work on creative pursuits and passions, and their students are working on some mind blowing things. Some notable examples are High Tech High in California, The Independence Project at Monument Mountain Regional High School in Massachusetts, and Mount Vernon Presbyterian School’s Innovation Diploma in Atlanta, Georgia. Students from these schools have done things like making their school more environmentally sustainable, cooking a meal for over 80 people, designing a picture of a historical character using math and technology, writing a novel, partnering with organizations like the Center for Disease Control on “real world” problems, and consulting with industry leaders to tackle complex challenges.

These schools exemplify that it is possible for schools to give students time to focus on creativity and passion finding during school time. Not only is it possible, but the students that are given this time in school have been advantageous in a world craving creative people. Imagine if all American schools had this time for creativity and passion finding. Imagine how much the American creative quotient scores could raise. Imagine how many more creative solutions America could be generating to solve big problems in our world today. The world demands creative people, so to solve the Creativity Crisis the world should also demand that schools, with their mentors and resources, provide the time for students to explore creative endeavors and personal passions in order to develop their creative confidence before it’s too late.

Life = Humanities “and” STEM not “or”

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MVPS is on fall break currently so we have a long weekend with no school today. It was such a great day!!!

And I spent half my day at school by choice. 🙂

While the students had today off, teachers had a planning day. While I haven’t been to a planning day before, I do know that this was not the normal planning day because it was run by MViFi and set up like a conference. Teachers seemed to really enjoy being able to have the choice of what sessions they attended and also being able to do a lot of hands on work.

The reason I was at the planning day was because I was offered the opportunity to co-facilitate one of the sessions, specifically the recycling session. This was a great and fun opportunity to lead and share our work in ID with teachers from across divisions. After years of talking about recycling problems that need to be solved for, I’m excited with the conversations that have been started and can’t wait to see how things continue. It’s also always nice when people get excited about your prototype. (Which is officially done and in place in a middle school classroom collecting data!!!!)

However, what I think I enjoyed most about today actually was my second session on designing a humanities course that will be launched for freshman to take for 2016-2017. It was a great group and a great challenge that sparked great conversation!

One of the big take away thoughts that I had was around the idea of fun work versus meaningful work.

My table had a conversation about how the humanities are about humans, which also has a lot to do with struggle. (By the way also there was an important distinction with “humanities” not just meaning English and history classes, but also arts and language and being more about culture than just being a combo of subjects.) Both analyzing and communicating the struggles of others, and having to struggle yourself to get work done. The truth is that there is a lot of struggle in life. I might not have the years of experience to really be able to say this, but I’d like to think, while I may not be able to empathize, I can at least understand on some level.

Sometimes you will have work that you simply don’t want to do, but you still have to get it done. In life you don’t always get to do what you want. It’s not always fun. That’s ok thought.

We talked about how you can do really hard work, that might not be the most fun while you’re working on it, but afterwards it can feel so rewarding. Rewarding to the point where students even comment by saying, “This was really hard, but I loved it! I feel like I really learned something.” One of the teachers mentioned our past show “Beast on the Moon”, and how it obviously was not a very up lifting comedy kind of show. The show was very serious, with lots of emotions and moving pieces constantly changing, and in general it was a tough drama, not to mention the amount of lines to memorize. However, after the show, we were thrilled with what we had just pulled off. It was rewarding to know we went through all of the hard work and then could put on a show that truly moved people.

However, the interesting question/struggle comes with how to make the hard work then feel rewarding at the end. In my opinion, this requires for students to be given the opportunity to do meaningful work.

Meaningful work can be fun. Feeling happy about learning something I think is pretty meaningful– being happy is important to a healthy life.

However, meaningful work can also be hard. It can be tiring and stressful and time consuming and still be meaningful.

In AP Lang we’ve been working on our Creativity Crisis papers (in fact I was going to officially share mine today, but I was much too passionate about today’s adventures to not talk about them). Now while we were still writing a paper, and staying up late to meet deadlines, and getting specific feedback that wasn’t always positive, we have been ok with all of it because we know that we have to go through all of that hard work in order to share something valuable with a wider audience. That is how we are choosing to try and make the work we do meaningful in this situation.

Teachers can’t just make work meaningful because for work to be meaningful, students have to find that meaning. However, it is possible for the work to not be given the chance to be meaningful. When this happens, this is when work feels tedious on top of being tiring and stressful and time consuming.

I feel like there is a common assumption that students (especially those of us helping more significantly with shaping our own learning experience) think we should only do work we find to be fun work. Another assumption being that your typical “STEM student” (a bubble to which I find myself often included) thinks everything should be about brainstorming and creating a product.

I’d like to dispel these beliefs at least a little because I don’t believe either of these assumptions to be true.

In fact I don’t want to ever only be doing fun work because after a while it stops being fun if it isn’t also challenging. While “fun stuff” is needed to help relieve stress and keep high energy levels to be able to work on harder stuff, overcoming challenges often feels more rewarding then just doing the fun stuff.

Also I find it interesting, because while I do love STEM and will likely go into a STEM field, I have found myself in a lot of humanities conversations lately. Sometimes it is important to just have a conversation. To not be focused on trying to make an end product, but to just sit and have a deep talk. However, you can’t always just sit and talk because eventually it will start to feel like you are having an empty conversation because it’s the same type of conversation you’ve had before but nothing is changing.

STEM and the Humanities need each other. Humanities, understanding humans, is at the basis of any thing you are trying to design, and you need the STEM skills to then actually design it to help provoke change which then leads to new conversations.

I feel like my thoughts have been all over the place tonight. (Probably doesn’t help with it being so late and my flight to Ohio being such chaos tonight.) I think part of the disjointedness to this writing tonight is because I have so many thoughts about this idea of Humanities and STEM; it feels like they are always working in competition with one another rather than collaboration with one another.

My big thought I guess is that great learning is about overcoming challenges that leads to something where you are able to feel happy and proud about what you’ve accomplished at the end. If you aren’t happy and proud at the end, then why did you do it?

I’m a Multipotentialite

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Typically I wait until night (often very late at night…) before blogging because I want to see what all happens in my day before discussing just one thing, but today is different. I love being different. I think I’ve always known I’ve been different.

I’m that kid that has a million different interests and am always busy working on something that may seem unrelated to some people. I’m curious and passionate about music, soccer, math, games (particularly cards), acrobatics, design, theater, gymnastics, coaching, the Renaissance, teaching, Girl Scouting, mentoring, innovating, bringing communities together, learning, education reform, storytelling, engineering, the impact of space on a community, student voice, writing, reading, project based learning, and the list could go on…

Just last week I was asked by at least 3 different people the question that is the story of my life, “What don’t you do?”

My first thought to that question is, “Well there’s a bunch I don’t do–yet.”

I love my life. I love being involved in a ton. I love working on new ideas. I love each of my passions and interests. I don’t love bing asked to choose just one.

I’m pretty bad at making decisions. I’ve discussed this on multiple blog posts of mine (Making Decisions, Uncomfortable Moments) and most people that know me well understand how true this is. I even did an entire post called “Who Do I Want to Be?” which is entirely about how I never know how to answer the question “Who is your hero?” because I admire so many people that I can’t decide on just one. This post then goes on to talk about what my friends (including teachers/mentors) and I call the “Anya Problem/Dilemma,” which basically is the problem of being interested in too many things to the point where you can’t decide on just one path, so you get spread out really thin over a variety of topics.

Other questions I can never answer include: What college do you want to go to? What do you want to major in? What do you want to do when you grow up? Who do you want to be? What’s your passion (singular passion…)? What’s your goal (singular again…)? What motivates you (you guessed it, singular too…)?

Even in my about me page for this blog, which was the first thing I ever wrote for my blog (the only thing I’ve really edited was changing my age and adding a disclaimer on grammar), I write in my first paragraph immediately following my name:

I don’t know what I want to be when I grow up, and I never have, but that is okay because I am only 16. I understand the beauty of not knowing your specific passion because  that allows you to experience life with an open mind to all fields of learning and growing.

It’s not only that I can’t answer these questions, but they often make me anxious to be asked these questions. I remember last year probably being more stressed than any other time when being asked about what courses I want to take next year (this current school year). I wrote two different posts (What to Do? and What to Do: Part Two) that both went into my “Rants and Bugs” category that were all about my stress in trying to decide, because I have the opposite problem of most people where there are more classes I want to take then time that I have in my schedule to take them.

I feel as if I’m constantly being pushed to make decisions and decide on one path, and then I don’t feel as if I fit on that one path which just makes me frustrated. It sometimes gets to the point where I feel confused because friends of mine don’t seem to be having these same problems.

I’d say over the past year these situations have been occurring more often with the college discussions becoming more frequent. I haven’t grown to be okay with it, but I’ve been tolerating it; trying to play along.

Today I watched a TEDTalk called, “Why some of us don’t have one true calling,” that might have possibly been the most moving TEDTalk I’ve personally watched, because Emilie Wapnick introduced me to a world of people just like me having these same problems. These people are called “multipotentialites”, and I can’t even begin to explain how great it was to hear this TEDTalk! Words can do such a great job of bringing communities together.

(Interesting bit of a tangent: there are lots of different names for these types of people which is kind of ironic that society can’t agree on one… One of these names is a “Renaissance Person” because during that time period it was actually more valued to have skills in lots of different areas. I find this interesting because the Renaissance has always been my favorite time period. I even have at least 3 different Renaissance outfits and go to the Renaissance festival every year!)

In drama we always hear our director say before every show, “Don’t lean back, but lean forward as you watch the MVPS Allstars production of…” He says this because when an audience is leaning forward that means they are really invested and interested in what you’re saying, and they are hanging onto every word wanting craving to hear more.

I was leaning forward the entire time I listened to this TEDTalk.

Like I said at the beginning of this post, “I love being different. I think I’ve always known I’ve been different.” However, sometimes- oftentimes- it is hard being different. Everyone is different thought, it is just a matter of how we are each different and unique. Wapnick made me feel proud to be a multipotentialite rather than feeling frustrated about not being able to make decisions on singular things.

While I know and acknowledge that it is often important to be able to make decisions, multipotentialites also have their own strengths as Wapnick points out:

  • Idea Synthesis: bringing together seemingly different concepts together to find the intersections where great ideas come from.
  • Rapid Learning: getting deeply curious about one thing and learning a ton about it before moving on to the next thing to also learn a ton about.
  • Adaptability: being able to put on different hats in different situations where different roles are necessary.

The more Wapnick spoke the more I found myself thinking, “Wow this is totally me. These are my strengths and weaknesses summed up possibly as well as they can be (if they have to be).” She even says that multipotentialites have a duty to innovate based on these strengths and characteristics, and it just made me think “That’s exactly why I was interested in joining the Innovation Diploma.”

Her website even has tips for multipotentialites on how to make a business out of all of their different curiosities. However, the question I keep wondering is about what to do before then.

I’m still in high school, unlike most of the people who have commented on twitter or her website about being a multipotentialite. Most of these people have graduated college and are now realizing they don’t feel quite right about the current job position they are in and what to make a change. I don’t want to remain confused and frustrated about my multiple interests until after college.

One (there are more of course) of the biggest driving forces as to why I do what I do is that I believe people of all ages have a voice and can contribute to real world problem solving. Part of why I don’t like the question, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” is because I don’t think I should have to wait in order to do something and be someone. All of life matters. Not just your life following college.

So with being a multipotentialite that has a ton of curiosities that drive my learning, how do I shape my current path to avoid maximum frustration and confusion? How might I create a college experience that doesn’t focus on making me choose one path as a specialist, but allows me to continue to explore where my curiosities take me as a multipotentialite?

Passion Work and Sleep

Finding-Passionate-Work

Today did not feel like a Friday for some reason, but looking back on the week I’ve realized just how great of a week it was! What really made it awesome was because I had something I very rarely have: time.

I’ve had no homework for the past few nights, which has been odd (it even worries me a tad that this is the quite before the storm…) but fantastic because then I’ve been able to just work on the stuff I want to work on after school! Specifically, I’ve gotten to do way more music stuff than I have in a while. We’ve finally been having all of the cast at drama (many people have been getting sick or had prior obligations and couldn’t make it to rehearsal), so I’ve gotten to start playing around with sound effects and making music with tons of instruments. Plus Wednesday, since I didn’t have homework, I got to practice some of the Upper School band pieces after school. Then Thursday I actually had time to go play with the middle school band. Plus today I learned I may get to go on the band field trip next Monday to see an orchestra play which should be awesome! (To be honest I don’t know much about the field trip because I literally just found out today that I may be able to go and it isn’t even 100% yet. Finger’s crossed though!)

With no homework, I’ve also actually gotten to sleep a little more than normal and I feel like I’ve noticed it during class. You know how sometimes you just feel in general more on your game than normal? That’s how I’ve felt this week. I’ve been happy, pondering, productive, asking lots of thoughtful questions, and just in general I feel more attentive and like I’ve processed more during class time this week. I got good grades on my two tests. I’ve been having interesting conversations around feedback on my Creativity Crisis paper. My design team had a really productive all hands on deck prototyping day and have now almost finished our full scale prototype. I felt like I was asking more questions and better understanding more conceptual topics in Latin and AP Chemistry. I was able to quickly learn a good bit about many revolutionary war key figures. I got to work on some iVenture work for the first time in forever. Plus I got to start reading Grant Lichtman’s 2nd book on education transformation for the 21st century, #EdJourney!

It’s just been a really great week! I guess passion work and sleep really can make a difference in your every day behavior. What if every week felt like this?