My final Night of the Notables has come to an end. All the time and effort put into this project has paid off with a fantastic presentation. Although I’m relieved to have gotten through all the stressful preparation, I will easily admit that I am sad it is finally over.
I would say that I met my goals for this project. I was successfully able to present a speech that I was proud of, and was also able to learn a lot about Joy Adamson—someone I had always admired as a child. I was also able to take my learning centre to the next level by upgrading my classic trifold from grade nine, and making it into something more unique. If I were to do this entire project for a third time, I would make sure to write my speech draft well in advance since this year, I let my inner critic get to me and I did not have a final copy until two nights before the big event.
One of my general goals was to improve my confidence while public speaking, and to add depth to my writing. I would say that I was able to accomplish both of these to a certain extent. While presenting my speech, I noticed the differences between mine last year and this year. Last year, I was nervous about the idea of speaking on front of many people; however, I was confident about the content of my speech. This year, I was excited to go on stage, but I was not completely ready to present the speech itself since I had less time to prepare for it. Luckily, I was able to pull of the presentation, and felt relieved afterwards. In terms of improving my writing, I felt that I was able to receive the proper reactions from the speech that I wanted to. I hoped to write a story that would emotionally effect the audience so that they could understand what it was like for Joy when she saw Elsa and the cubs return. Several people commented that they felt a “rollercoaster of emotions” while I told the story, which made me glad to know that my intentions had worked.
Weeks later now, looking back on Night of the Notables and the entire experience, I would say that the most memorable thing was watching my fellow grade tens present their speeches in their spectacular costumes, and walking through all the grade nines’ awesome learning centres. Everyone stayed in their character, and you could definitely see all the effort and hard work they put into transforming an area into an informational kiosk about influential people. This year, the bar was set very high, and I can’t wait to see what the future TALONS nines and tens will present.
For my learning centre, I wanted to make my display more 3 dimensional, so I chose to transform an 11 ft. x 8 ft. locker bay into a scene inspired by the Savannah in one of her movies. I tried to make an acacia tree using branches from my yard, and I bought some moss from Michaels to imitate the leaves of the tree. On top of the lockers, I tried to make the layered ‘rocks’ that Elsa and her cubs sat on for the final scene of the movie called “Born Free’. On top of the rocks, I placed stuffed animal lions that some classmates had generously let me borrow.
Since Joy was also an artist, I decided to try doing an image transfer of the final scene using mod podge and a canvas. For my interactive component, I asked the guests that came to my station to draw lions on large notebooks using pastels. They could get inspiration from either the movie playing on my laptop, or the stuffed animal models sitting on top of the locker bay.
Joy was also an author, so I decided to include several books on a table. Some of these books included “Behind the Mask,” a biography written in the style of a novel by Caroline Cass, and ” A Lion name Christian”, the story of a lion that went through a similar experience to Elsa. Also on the table was a jar asking for donations for the Born Free Foundation, an organization preventing animal cruelty that Joy had been a part of. I thought that it would be nice to give back to the cause, especially since foundations like these were part of Joy Adamson’s legacy.
Finally, for my food, I brought both animal cookies and homemade lion paw cookies. I thought that these tied into the theme of wild animals. In my learning centre, I wanted to include different pieces of who Joy Adamson was: an author, an artist, and an animal activist.
I owe a lot to my classmates that were so open to helping me, whether it was with giving me ideas for my learning centre or teaching me how to present a speech on stage. Every little tip or comment that I received gave me motivation to work harder and do the best I can do. Their support and encouragement kept me going throughout the preparation process, and during the presentation as well. I honestly don’t know how I would be able to pull this off without them.
I would like to thank Mr.Jackson for, once again, directing such a fun and memorable project. I choose to say he ‘directed’ Eminent since he gave us general instructions to guide us along the project, but still allowed us to have enough freedom to take it in whichever direction we chose to take it. He was always open for suggestions and gave us help along the way. I would also like to thank Mr. Albright for taking time from his classes to allow us to work on our speech, discuss learning centres, and do everything else that comes along with Eminent prep. He was very supportive of us, and it made me happy when he took the time to look at all the students’ learning centres individually. Last but certainly not least, I would like to thank Ms.Mulder for all the effort and hard work she continuously puts in to making events like this such a success. I really appreciate all that she does, and events like this wouldn’t happen without her.