#10 Final Blog Post: Farewell


I entered What’s the Story with enough understanding of how the course works that it felt almost as if I had an unfair advantage over others on where to start my research and what the work was like. I mean, I’ve already had two years of refining my questions and curiosities that it makes sense. However, I have been met with people who challenged my thinking and opinions in ways that taught me how to use the feedback I take and give to improve my work and hopefully, in turn, changes the world for the better.  

I do find myself lacking in managing my learning. Point A is this reflection: quite late. Furthermore, What’s the Story has so much to offer and explain that this felt daunting. I’ve learned by sitting in groups, discussing issues or even hanging out during lunch. How to manage my ‘stage’ anxiety through working with the actors was a great experience that I can grow off of. I’d like to apply these techniques of breathing, centering and the conquering the difficult hurdles that come with a truckload of work.

Responsible & Involved Citizenship

I thoroughly enjoyed my team this year. The group of learners and mentors involved is something I will definitely miss. Collective teamwork during the lava stones was the best. Or even climbing Mt. Philo with everyone helped you grow into a piece of the puzzle, What’s the Story.

With my group, I was able to refine and accurately construct a purpose. Not just individually but also as we searched for more ideas and interviews: drafting up questions and working on group dynamics. Figuring who does what and weekly calls or group texts helped us stay in touch and keep our work flowing smoothly. I, personally feel as if the GEN group has helped me become less defensive but also stick up for what I find are morally right. As I have learned how to become an engaged listener throughout this year I feel as if it will always need fine-tuning. Either with topics, I agree with or not.

Informed & Integrative Thinker

I love a good debate and coming up with the evidence to support is just as engaging. During What’s the Story I found that as I progressed, changing ideas made me question both sides of any debate I found myself in outside of the “classroom”. I found that you need to provide a level for everyone to start on but bring a group to a collective decision.

As I move on, I need to ensure more efficient ways of communicating my ideas and others. I have the ingredients to bake my case, but I’d like to get better at fitting them together into a cohesive piece that stands out and grabs the topic, carrying to my conclusion. I can see myself working on this in any normal class, but rather in disagreements in real life. I can implement these traits to understand others thinking.

Clear & Effective Communication

At the beginning of the year, I had less of a listener’s point of view than I do now. After months of group work and understanding what being with a group of people more than a week or two can open my eyes too. I know I’ve said this so much that by now it’s boring and repetitive. And it is, but I’ve applied to listen to others so much that it’s hard to believe I didn’t have this before. The documentary, The G Word showcases the storytelling abilities I’ve acquired and plan on using in my works in the future.

As the project went on, my group’s audience got smaller and smaller. Which is good. Dialing it down helped us focus. When leaving this group I hope to take these habits and work on improving my focus and creating a clear and concise piece for others to enjoy in everything.

“When one door closes, another opens”

-Alexander Graham Bell

Reflection Piece

Throughout this year I’ve noticed learning that I normally wouldn’t accredit to something else other than myself. However, I can see where What’s the Story has helped me grow within my daily life. It has taught me how to be open to explore new ideas and the importance of critical thinking in our school system, yet ultimately shown me how to apply these aspects to the real world. What’s the Story has helped me build a solid structure on which I can leave the classical school system where others feel as if they can’t.

Usually, I work on these traits, such as exploring new concepts on my own, though I remember either on the first or second overnight we had all selected a topic we were interested in. We had stuck them to the walls of the Common room and walked around giving feedback. As a strongly defiant person, it was eye-opening and yet catching to see the ideas and topics discussed that normally would be forgotten otherwise.

Rex Ross

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