The Graveyard Park Brochure

Here you can access our online brochure.

Reflection Paragraph

I contributed to almost every area of our project, whether it was during the brainstorming phase or writing the final copy of descriptions. More specifically, I suggested the ideas of the sleer cave roller coaster, Miss Lupescu as a teacher, the custom headstone station, Miss Lupescu’s ‘cafe’, and Bod’s Bench of Terror. Finally, I wrote the descriptions for the three main shows, and put everyone’s work together in a PowerPoint. Overall, every task throughout this project was either delegated really well or worked on together efficiently.

In-depth Post #3

Communication with my mentor has stayed consistent since the last post, aside from a few emails back and forth to keep each other updated. As I continue to refine the basic movements of the skateboard, I think that this is all that is necessary. Just some occasional suggestions on where to go next, or answering questions if they come up. I will focus on keeping this steady progression.

Reflection Questions:

  • What learning challenges emerged?

One minor issue that I ran into was my board slightly veering to the left while pushing. At first, I assumed it was because it is my left foot that stays on the board while pushing, so it tilts the board slightly left when my right foot is not on the board as well. However, I now realize that it is most likely simply an issue of the board not being of very good quality, which is something that I had anticipated since the beginning of the project.

  • What three strategies could improve the quality of your mentoring interactions?
  • What is the plan of action for implementing each of the three strategies?

In-depth Post #2

At this point in my in-depth project, communication with my mentor has been, to say the least, not very ideal. However, I am still in the simple introductory stages of the project so I have not been held back too much yet. While I haven’t gotten the chance to learn any specific tricks yet, I think that this is the right approach to the project. I certainly do not want to get too far ahead of myself, and ultimately struggle to make any progress. Slow and steady.

Reflection on In-depth so far:

  • How did your mentor gain their experience/expertise?

The way he introduced himself as a former skater, is that for about seven years of his teenage life, he “lived at the skatepark” with his friends. This phase only stopped because of injuries, but the knowledge is still there.

  • What were those experiences like for your mentor?

The actual time that he spent skateboarding was probably more casual than anything, however, I do not think that matters when we are talking about seven years of experience with a skateboard.

  • What wisdom have you gained from your mentor so far?

Before the communication on my mentor’s end slowed down, he did give a couple of brief pointers on where he thinks this project should start and end up going. He told me that for now, I should only be focussing on getting comfortable with the board before getting into learning some more specific things. This is pretty much what I had in mind from the beginning, so it looks like we at least won’t struggle with having common goals for me.

  • What have you learned so far, in terms of facilitation strategies, that might contribute to your own development as a mentor?

The main factor that determines who I chose for a mentor was not only how much experience they have in this area, but more importantly how long they have been experienced. It is very useful when my mentor relates what we are talking about with his experiences with skateboarding in childhood because that is the time of life I am going through right now.

Introduction to In-depth 2022 – AJ

Welcome to the beginning of my TALONS in-depth project for 2022! Here I will introduce you to my topic (skateboarding), and discuss a little bit of my mentor and the overall process that I plan on taking over the next five months.

Why Skateboarding?

The general goal of in-depth is to get a chance to learn all about and/or improve on a specific skill that is not already offered as a school course. Over the past year I have taken a great interest in skateboarding, without an idea of how I would begin to learn. Already owning a board of my own that has seen little to no use over the last few years, I saw this as a perfect opportunity to dive into this upcoming in-depth project with something that I will genuinely enjoy. The hope is that by the end I will have developed somewhat of a baseline skillset which I will then use to decide where I want to take this skill after the project.

How do I Plan on Achieving my Goal?

I understand that a skill like this requires a lot of patience with getting comfortable with the basics, so I am prepared to spend weeks at the beginning without even learning any tricks as long as I can ensure that I don’t rush through this project too fast. Another crucial factor is the weather controlling when I am able to get out and practice. As I am not really able ride much in the rain, I must make sure that I am using the sunny days to my advantage and practicing at least as consistently as possible.

My Mentor

Finding a mentor for this project was my only hesitation for choosing skateboarding, because I thought that finding someone suitable would be much more difficult than it ended up being. My mom helped me out with this part, as she was able to put up a quick Facebook post to see if any of my parents’ friends had skateboarding experience. After contemplating a couple of good options, I decided to go with a friend of my dad’s named Brayden Douglas. He claims to have “lived” at the skatepark for around seven years no longer than five to ten years ago, and seems quite enthusiastic about being a part of my project. I have been in touch with Brayden since January 16th, and am now waiting on a follow up regarding his criminal record check.

Phil Jackson’s Learning Centre – AJ

“The strength of the team is each individual member. The strength of each member is the team.”

I hope you have had a good evening, my name’s Phil Jackson and I have put together a little blog post to teach you about myself, and a brief history of my accomplishments. I’m not too good with technology, but I hope that you at least learn something useful, and leave here inspired to achieve your own goals. Links to some separate sections such as specific achievements and a timeline of my life are scattered throughout this presentation. Thanks again for stopping by, and make sure to visit my fellow eminent people as well.


This is the main body of the paragraph, where I’ll share an overview of why I am considered eminent in my field. Here you’ll also access the links to a few other sections which I’m sure you’ll find both intriguing and informative.

As you may already know, I am known for my time as a coach with the Chicago Bulls and the Los Angeles Lakers in the National Basketball Association (NBA). Many consider me to be the most successful and even the most influential coach of all of basketball. My most notable work is with Michael Jordan, alongside other amazing players like Kobe Bryant, and Scottie Pippen. However, everyone starts somewhere, and there are a lot of noteworthy events that took place in the early stages of my career, leading up to where I have got to. For a more detailed timeline of my career, please click here. Needless to say, I’ve impacted the league in more ways than just what most people know me for.

Everything that I said above sounds great, but you don’t have to just take my word for it. The many of my awards that I have accumulated over the years might help you get a better perspective of how significant my accomplishments really are. If you are interested in more specific descriptions of my most notable achievements, please click here. If you weren’t alive around my prime years of coaching, then you most likely don’t understand what exactly I had to overcome to get to where I am today. In my field of coaching a basketball team, some of the biggest obstacles might be considered other teams. This absolutely holds true for my case, like with the Houston Rockets, Utah Jazz, and most notably, the Detroit Pistons. All of these teams including my Chicago Bulls were simultaneously fighting to be the best of the 1990s. My team was able to come out with 6 championships over the course of the decade, which I believe is one of the most impressive feats done by a coach to date.

If there’s one thing that I want you to take from all of this information, it’s that my demographic of influence is not just a single group of people like other coaches or the players that I coached. My work inspires all that share one small thing in common, the love of basketball. On top of that, my influence on the basketball community is still relevant to this day, even people that weren’t even alive during my time. For example, feel free to check out this project about me done by a high school kid here. Another example of my work still being relevant is the Netflix documentary that some of you have probably heard of called “The Last Dance”, which is mostly about what I discussed in the previous paragraph. This documentary only came out last year and is what taught a lot of people about my legacy for the first time.

Test Your Own Knowledge

Below you’ll be given a few dilemmas that will give you a little bit of insight into the mind of a coach. Answer to the best of your ability, and see if you have what it takes to become the next NBA champion.

  1. Which do you believe is generally more important for a team; developing individual skills or teamwork?
  2. Based on your previous answer, how would you develop the team; through practicing or by showing them examples?
  3. You are approaching the final game of the season, and it’s a really important one; would you have a tough training session the day before or give your team a rest?

Keep in mind that all of these are situational and can change depending on who is coaching. There is not necessarily a right or wrong answer for any of these, just what is generally agreed upon.


While writing about myself, I came across several amazing resources that helped refresh my memory of events that took place years ago. If anything that you have read in this presentation interests you, I recommended taking a look at some of the work that other people have done on me below.

Bailey, A. (2020, July 22). Ranking the 10 Best NBA Teams of the 1990s. Retrieved from:

Very similar to the last resource on this list, the article above by Bleacher Report is very specific in contrast to most of the other ones. If you are interested in my area at all, then this is a good article to quickly check out. (2007, September 7). Phil Jackson: Zen Master timeline. Retrieved from:

This article by ESPN does a great job summarizing the most important events throughout my career and is what the Canva timeline you may have looked at earlier is based on. Whether you want to see the big picture or the specifics, this is a good resource for everyone who is looking for a general overview. Phil Jackson > Quotes. Retrieved from:

This Goodreads section is a massive library for all kinds of my own quotes uploaded by random internet users. Not much else to say about it.

Logan, R. (2009 – 2021). Phil Jackson. Retrieved from:

This is another article with very basic information if you are new to me or this field. In fact, if there were some parts of what you learned here that didn’t quite make sense to you, Britannica will most likely have the information you need.

Szewczyk, D. (2011, May 9). Kobe Bryant, Michael Jordan and the 25 Greates Players to Play For Phil Jackson. Retrieved from:

This final article is a very interesting one, and much less broad than the previous three. It helped me get the statistic of how many Hall of Fame players I have coached, but other than that, most of the information here was not used for this presentation. I encourage you to take a look if this kind of thing interests you.


If you have made it all the way to the end of this presentation, thank you for showing your interest in my rollercoaster of a career. Once again, I hope you have learned something from this, and wish you a great rest of your evening. Also, please leave a comment if you have any other questions, or just want to give some feedback.

Thank you, Phil Jackson

Three Nuggets of Wisdom from John C. Maxwell

‘Developing the Leaders Around You’ Reflection


Three Quotes from the Book:

“Every organization has a shortage of leaders” – John C. Maxwell

John C. Maxwell states this in idea his lesson that refers to the number of leaders that every group has related to the amount that they need. According to him, every single organization that exists does not meet the ideal amount of leaders, which seems like a very bold claim at first. He then goes on to explain that it is impossible for someone to have too many leaders, and therefore nobody can have enough. This point specifically stood out to me because it is just an interesting way of saying something much simpler; you can never have too many leaders. When you word it his way, it is more optimistically encouraging to never settle with the number of leadership roles within your group, because there is always room to grow. I personally like this take on a simple concept, and also think that he explained it well. It is a little bit more difficult to think about this statement from the perspective of TALONS because we always have a fixed number of people in the classroom, or even within groups. However, it could possibly relate to everyone reaching their full potential as a leader, and how there can never be enough “10’s”. In this case, the only purpose of the quote is to remind the class to never stop learning, because every single group has room to grow in this area.

“None of us is as smart as all of us” – Ken Blanchard

This one was confusing to me at first, but it now makes sense after a little bit of further research. The quote by Ken Blanchard refers to encouraging teamwork within an organization in order to maximize the efficiency of everyday regular tasks. The only part about this that I am still unsure about is the wording of the quote itself, but I have an idea that makes some sense. Ken Blanchard believes that teamwork is the key to a successful work environment, so maybe he is trying to say that if not everyone is working together then you might as well have no one. The original reason I chose to write about this quote as I said before, is because it did not make much sense to me while watching the video. However, I also think that the main message here is relevant to pretty much everything that is taught in Leadership. Not only that, but I also wrote the majority of my Eminent Person speech around a similar idea. It is clear that Ken’s quote relates to a lot of aspects of the TALONS program, so here are a couple of more specific examples. Some trips are a lot more complicated to plan than others and the entire process could fall apart if we are not smart about distributing the workload and assigning roles for everyone. On the flip side, we also need to know when to come together to solve individual problems and find a balance between working independently and together.

“Success is the maximum utilization of the ability that you have” – Zig Ziglar

You may use a lot of your effort to build and enhance your abilities as a leader, but it all goes to waste if you do not know how to use them to your advantage. This quote is saying that developing yourself and your skills is only the first step towards success and that reaching this point of success is unrealistic if you do not have the next steps of implementation down. I like this quote because the wording simplifies the concept nicely, however, this is not the main reason it stood out to me. I chose this final quote because it is a part of one of my goals from the early stages of TALONS, which relates to being confident in my abilities. This program has done a lot to guide me through developing myself as a leader, but it takes the confidence that I have been working on over the past couple of years to put it to the test. This is why I decided to analyze Ziglar’s quote further, but how does it relate to the TALONS program? There are a couple of examples that come to mind, for example, the individual part of committee work is dependant on this. Just generally putting what leadership teaches us into action with the grade nines takes this kind of skill, as well as anything to do with using class material in the real world.



Aslam, A. (2015, July 5). “None of us is as smart as all of us” – 3 Lessons on Teamwork. Retrieved from

Maxwell, J. (2014). Developing the Leaders Around You. The John Maxwell Co.




Peer Interview Reflection

My Feedback

Considering how little I got to prepare for this, I think the interview went pretty well, although coming up with a few more questions beforehand would have helped. I liked the transitions that I used in between responses, making my questions feel more connected with one another. For example, I would comment on the interviewee’s answers as one normally would and use that buffer sentence to come up with another question related to what was just said. One thing that stood out as needing improvement was more consistent eye contact, and I think the reason that this was the case is because I needed to think on the spot a lot more than I would have liked to. This did not take that much away from the flow, but it is still something to keep in mind as I get more experience in this area. Overall, none of it felt too awkward and was mostly pretty casual. This is why we were able to make some changes as we were going, leaving the group with a solid set of interviews to work with.

Preparing for the Real Interview

I sent the email to my soccer coach a couple of days ago, requesting to set up the interview. He has already responded and told me to remind him after the next practice (Monday), for further discussion and to set up a date. The way that CLE and this eminent project have lined up has given me a good amount of interview experience, and on both sides of it as well. It is beneficial to be practicing as both the interviewer and the interviewee because both roles require a similar skill, which is the ability to connect your own responses with what was previously said. Whether that be a question or an answer, I need to have as much prepared for the interview as I can beforehand. One problem with the peer interviews is that we did not really have a consistent topic for our discussions, so it’s important to establish a theme for the upcoming eminent interview. I plan to focus on talking about some aspects of his own coaching style and get a background of some of his values as a coach. I am interested in this for two reasons, one of them being that he is my coach, I am intrigued about finding out how our team is like from his perspective. Secondly, I will be able to compare what I already know about Phil Jackson with someone that I personally know, which is something that I cannot do with the internet. If everything that I have planned so far goes well, then I expect to be set on a good track to a successful eminent project this year.

Introductory Blog Post Reflection

After sharing my eminent introduction with the Avengers:

Reading through my group’s first blog posts let me get an idea of what kinds of projects my classmates were doing, and I was able to compare grade nines with tens. As I expected, there was a lot of variety in the people that we chose, and I think that is better than being in a group with five other sports-related projects. This made the process of giving and receiving feedback much more interesting. I also believe that we all came out of this process with enough experience and knowledge to improve our future blog posts. Not only do we each receive five unique responses on the posts, but getting an idea of where other people are going with their project is going to help us plan for our own as well.

My peers’ blog posts were all around really well done, and I was especially impressed with the level of creativity in the grade nines who have most likely never done something like this before. I fully expect to be learning just as much useful information from them as the other grade tens throughout this project. Overall, exchanging feedback peer-to-peer adds an extra level of guidance that is not given by a simple mark, and I hope that everyone is just as supportive when doing this in the future.


Eminent 2021 – Introduction

Introducing: Phil Jackson

“The most we can hope for is to create the best possible conditions for success, then let go of the outcome. The ride is a lot more fun that way” – Phil Jackson in Eleven Rings: The Soul of Success.


I have been inspired by Phil Jackson and his Chicago Bulls since my speech on Michael Jordan in grade 5. Of course, I did not know specifically who his coach was at the time, but I am sure everybody is at least familiar with the name Michael Jordan. Well, this would not be the case if he did not have a coach like Phil Jackson. This is what intrigued me about him at first but after a little bit of research, I have found some of his leadership philosophies to be quite interesting as well. After all, the purpose of the research that we do is to not only strengthen our knowledge but our interest in the person as well. Phil Jackson is proving to be more and more qualified to be classified eminent the more I learn about him. Some common descriptions that people use for him include his mindset always being in the present. This means that he rarely wastes time thinking about the past or future, which makes a lot of sense to me for someone in his position. He is a straightforward, honest, and confident coach, and I feel that I can relate to those listed qualities in some way. Phil Jackson makes his priorities clear, which allows for effective team and individual goal-setting. Since we are talking about an NBA coach, these goals greatly differ from the goals of a TALONS learner. While his challenges come in the form of other teams, in my case, I am a part of the one team of students that come together to take on challenges. The process of doing so is still connected with Phil Jackson’s situation.

Who was the better coach: Bulls' Phil Jackson or Warriors' Steve Kerr? | RSN

Although he is most known for his work with the Chicago Bulls, Phil Jackson has impacted the NBA in so many more ways and still is today. In fact, I truly believe that his name will still be relevant for tens of years in the future; as long as the NBA maintains its popularity. The way that so many coaches and players build their routines based on his own philosophies; you cannot ignore your origins. However, this theory stays strong mainly because he is still alive. One’s memories simply cannot live on forever; it is only a matter of time until a new coach replaces his role of being the person that younger coaches look up to. Not to mention his absurd record of thirteen championship rings. You are going to have to wait a long time if you want to see someone surpass that number. We cannot discuss Phil Jackson’s eminence without mentioning the massive obstacles he had to get past along the way. Keep in mind that his prime era was the same time that several other franchises were in the midst of their big break. For example, the Utah Jazz and the Detroit Pistons are both teams that stood out as being significant obstacles in his way of championships. Phil Jackson is a great example of benefiting from challenges like this because his journey with the bulls would not have been as inspiring, and his players and mentees would not have gained as much. For those reasons, I believe that Phil Jackson deserves to be in the TALONS archives of eminent people, and I am eager to learn more about him throughout this project.

The next step of this project is interviewing someone that can give deeper information than Google. I already have a couple of people in my mind who would qualify for the position, so the first thing to do in preparation is to start jotting down some starter questions. I am going to aim for ten, because that is the amount that I had for my CLE interview, and that interview went well. I hope to use this opportunity to get some good and useful information from my interviewee.


Sources Phil Jackson quotes. Retrieved from: Phil Jackson’s Unorthodox Approach of Running His Teams. Retrieved from: Phil Jackson on Jordan, one Infamous Finals Distraction and the End of a Dynasty. Retrieved from: Ranking the 10 Best NBA Teams of the 1990s. Retrieved from: