Sunday, June 8, 2014

Spencer's Banjo Adventure Post 26

So this is it. The end of my year of 20 time. Instead of rambling on at the beginning I am going to answer all of my teacher's questions first, as they will probably cover most of my thoughts.

Overall, I enjoyed 20 time. I loved having each Friday to do what i wanted, I felt empowered to accomplish any goal I had and that is great. Growing and learning this past year was invaluable and my mindset on many things has changed as a result of not only my project but also the projects of my fellow students.

Changes I would like to see to 20 time next year are the way it is presented. I know that as we were the first year for this it couldn't have been this way but I hope next year students are introduced to 20 time with a talk or two from the previous year. I think it would really assure them that they can do awesome stuff and maybe see how it really is ok to fail, because that is new to some people.

The blogging should defiantly not change. Blogging about my project and experiences kept me on track and helped me organize where my thoughts and actions were headed in my project. Having Fridays in class for 20 time also helped me a lot. I got to receive feedback from my peers about my project and was able to see the wonderful things my peers were achieving and learning.

Yes, defiantly. It provides a creative outlet that students might not have otherwise. It was a fantastic learning opportunity and very often made me look differently at things; 20 time was great because I could pick a project that I am passionate about or something completely new and have fun with it.

Be all in. If your project doesn't excite you, maybe it isn't for you. Make sure you care about your project because otherwise it will just be another homework assignment you don't care about, make it fun and make it count.

Thank you to everyone who ever read my blog, if anyone even did. This has been an awesome year and I will never forget it. Goodbye

Monday, May 26, 2014

Spencer's Banjo Adventure Post 25

20 Time is officially at a close. Talks began last Thursday and I presented that very day. I thought it went well, but obviously I would think so. The crowd laughed and applauded for me and that made me feel great. I had many people come up to me afterwords, people from my class and from other classes, and say that my speech was great or that they heard great things about it. That really made me happy to hear all that positive feedback after being pretty nervous about it. I talked about how important music is and the impact it can have on people then challenged people at the end to 'go make some noise'. To go listen to the radio, to sing a song, play an instrument, have a dance party in their living room. Music is good for us and so it is my hope that everyone has it in their life.
Talks continue for the next few days in class, til Thursday I believe. They have been outstanding in my class so far and I cannot wait to hear the rest of them. I am interested and anxious to hear who gets picked for the TEDx talk. I want to be picked because it is a great oppourtunity but I also don't want to because it would require more work on my part. If presented with the chance however I would happily accept it. That's all for now, thanks for reading!

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Spencer's Banjo Adventure Post 24

Same old same old brainstorming for the big speech coming up. One week left to get it together before the first round of speeches. This evening we went out for mother's day dinner and at the restaurant there was a man playing guitar. He was pretty good, he had electronic backup to round out his songs and had a pretty great singing voice. The thing that was most impressive to me however was that he did Dueling Banjos! He had a prerecorded banjo part and then 'dueled' it with his guitar. It was awesome.
I am glad that many of the other kid's 20 time goals are coming to fruition. There is a kids with cancer walk coming up, a suicide awareness 5k at the end of the month, and two students got an American Sign Language Club approved! I am really excited to hear about all the successes people have had, but also excited to hear about failures and see what people have learned. This past week has been long and tough so I guess that is all for now.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Spencer's Banjo Adventure Post 23

The past two weeks have mostly been spent thinking about the talk coming up in less than a month, gathering ideas and organizing my thoughts. I have an old journal that I have set aside a few pages in to write stuff down and help plan out my speech. In addition to the speech I need to set up a powerpoint with some pictures on it to help illustrate and organize my speech. One picture I had in mind was a picture of the program from my sister's elementary school spring concert. The concert was titled "Music Has Brought Us Together". Apart from the title's application to the concert it got me thinking about my talk and I figured it might be beneficial to my speech. This past week was our spring break, so naturally I did not do as much work on my speech as I could have. Break is for relaxing, not school work. So now I will just continue to think up my (hopefully) awesome speech. That is all for now.

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Spencer's Banjo Adventure Post 22

We are at the point in the year where we are supposed to have picked out our topic and we have to begin writing and or formulating my speech. I have officially decided to talk about the importance of music. I am going to start planning out what are some key points I want to touch on in my talk. At this point I am going to practice and play banjo much less than I have been. I might upload another video or two but if I do it will be mostly talking and not as much banjo playing.
We are supposed to have our speech planned out by May 2nd because the in class talks begin on May 22nd. I am excited to get into really thinking about my talk and I can't wait to hear everyone else's talks. I don't want to rush, but I can't wait for the end of May.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Spencer's Banjo Adventure Post 21

Same old same old these past two weeks. Practicing here and there and a majority of thinking about the talk at the end of the year. Last Friday we had practice talks and I thought it went really well! Eight of us stood up in front of the class and talked about where we were with our projects for about a minute. I talked about how it was really hard teaching yourself a string instrument and how I was losing steam on the project but had kept myself interested by picking up the trumpet again. After everyone had completed their talks one of my friends in the class called me over and said she was experiencing the same thing with her project about learning guitar. It was reassuring to know that someone else is having the same problems as I am.
A majority of my free time is spent at least thinking about my talk coming up soon. Even now as I type this I have Pandora open in a separate tab and am listening to music. (I have to reopen it every so often because UTubeNoAds is messing with it and I don't know how to uninstall it) Music is such a great thing and has really been around forever. Music can infect us with a variety of emotions as well. Yesterday alone I went from tearing up at a song to dancing around my kitchen because a song rocked so much. Long story short, I love music and probably always will. It is just that great.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Spencer's Banjo Adventure Post 20

In class last Friday Mr. Provenzano gave our class a general response to all of the blogs we posted the week before. He addressed some of the suggestions given in our blogs and said he decided to make some changes. First off, as I suggested, we are going to be having mini, practice presentations on Fridays now instead of sitting around blogging or watching a video. I am glad this change is coming to fruition because I think it will be a lot more interesting than just reading people's blogs. Who knows, maybe I'll even bring in my banjo or trumpet and play something. Secondly, he is switching blog posts from every Friday to every two Fridays. I don't really care either way but I understand that for others it may be hard to blog every week. Lastly, he said that he would be strongly considering moving 20 time back next year until after the Transcendentalism unit. I think this will be great for the sophomores next year as it will give them time to get comfortable in their classes and hopefully have a lot of fun with their project ideas.
On the topic of my talk at the end of the year, I really think I'll focus on the importance of music. Music is such a big part of my everyday life and I cannot believe it took me this long to fully realize that. I am going to post a song by MercyMe, a Christian band, below. I don't whether you are religious or not but the chorus says "All of creation, sing with me now". No matter what your beliefs are, I think of this a lot; at its simplest meaning it says that music is everywhere. That life is a big song, and everything sings.