Developing Leaders Around You – Three Nuggets of Wisdom

Why Leaders need to Reproduce Other Leaders – The organization’s growth potential is directly related to its personnel potential 

One of the most important roles of a Leader is to help support and create more leaders. If an organization has one person in a leadership role, and this person does not help reproduce other leaders, what will happen when this person leaves? If instead, the leader focuses on making those around them even better leaders than themselves, they ensure that the organization will continue to grow in their absence. This is important to me because I want to make sure that the grade nines now and in the future have the same great experience that I had in TALONS. I want to make sure that they learn and grow and have even more fun than I did in TALONS. If I can teach the grade nines now how to lead, participate and experience the best that they can, then they can teach those after them and so on. If on a TALONS trip, I can use this by sharing and dividing a leadership role with a grade nine. If one of my jobs is to lead a group on a trail with a map, I can partner with a grade nine and have them watch what I’m doing at the front while leading. Even better, I can have them do parts of the leading with the map or make decisions for the groups with little guidance from myself. This way, they can not only learn to lead by watching and hearing, but also by gaining experience themselves.  

 

Leaders are Big Picture Thinkers 

Leaders must be able to see the big picture when looking at a situation. If a leader is in a situation, they must be able to be calm and collected, be rational and see all the variables before making a decision. To have the ability to pick apart all the small unnecessary details to see to the main issue at hand is the skill of a good leader. This rings true to me because I want to be able to have a clear head when communicating and leading other people through tough and quick decisions. Often, I find myself focusing on a small detail that isn’t important when it comes to the grand scheme of the issue at hand. If I can see and keep the big idea in my head, I can be more productive, efficient and impactful as a leader. On a TALONS trip, I can implement this when making quick and effective decisions outside. Let’s say we were on a hiking trip, and we come to the fork in the trail, one leads a better viewpoint but harder trail, the other straight to our destination, and it is our decision to make. Before I might have started to think about how hard the trail and all the small meaningless details, but with the big picture in mind I can have a clearer vision in my head. I know that the point of the trip is to see the viewpoints with each other, I know that the physique of my group is strong and that we have lots of time. With my head clearer and more focused, I can make executive decision to go see the viewpoint (or make whichever decision fits the big picture the best).  

 

Work on Yourself Before you Work on Others, Leaders Go First! 

When leading a group, a leader must first have themselves in check. It isn’t healthy or right of someone to present themselves as a role model and preacher-of-good-leadership before they themselves are. It is unfair to yourself and others because you need to be a good leader and person yourself before you can even begin to know how to teach others. If one doesn’t even know themselves, how can they be truthful when teaching others? I personally resonate with this because I want to and try to work on myself not only for the good of myself but others. I want to be able to talk out loud in front of a group before encouraging someone to speak out, I want to have the confidence and communication skills to be able to make good decisions before telling someone to make a group decision. During a TALONS trip, I can use this by moderating the amount of work I share and do. If I am trying to mentor a grade nine student during a hiking trip, I can’t just throw all work towards them now that I have experience. I must be able to give them work to do, but also take opportunities myself to learn and be a leader. Making sure that I am always learning and educating myself no matter how much seniority I have is important no matter the situation. Finding that balance between letting others learn and allowing myself to learn is a good spot to be in.  

 

Maxwell, J. C. (1995). Developing the Leaders Around You. Thomas Nelson. 

Eminent Person Interview – The Reflection

Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to get an interview for my eminent person this year. I did, however, get an interview for my pervious eminent person this year before I changed, so this really changed and helped me make up for not getting an interview.  

I think that first of all, I should’ve been more open-minded when looking for a person to interview. I tunnel visioned on people who were close with my eminent person and didn’t think about reaching out to someone who maybe wrote a few articles or blog posts about him. It was only after the due date for getting an interview when I found someone on the Alpinist blog site who had written many many great posts on Marc Andre. Part of the problem with tunnel visioning on these people was that they were really hard to get a hold of and required a bit more work to contact. Not only this but I was also so nervous about reaching out to people that it took a lot of convincing to get myself to send emails. If I ever have to reach out to people for interviews, I will definitely be more open-minded and hopefully confident. 

However, as I mentioned before, I was able to get a better view on what the interview gave insight on with my previous eminent person. I was doing Louisa May Alcott before Marc-Andre and I did an interview with a professor from Kansas State University who studies Alcott’s work. I was so nervous for the interview and had originally just wanted to get it over with, but as I did the interview and reflected on it later on, I realized just how valuable the interview was. Talking with someone about something they’re passionate about is really inspiring and makes you more interested in that person. He was really interested and genuine in his love for Alcott’s books and message that it inspired me as well.  

With this in mind, I had a better idea of what I had to do to make up for not having and interview for Leclerc. I know that I needed to get a view of him through the eyes of people who knew him, were inspired by him or were apart of his life. I went looking for a lot of resources where there were people talking and giving their opinions of what kind of a person he was like. People like his close friends and girlfriend were really helpful in this. I also looked for more videos of him and about him. I found that I was able to learn a lot more about a person when watching them interact and talk than I could on a few words on paper. One really big resource to me was the documentary, The Alpinist. In the documentary, not only do they talk about his accomplishments, but also his impact on other people, his personal life and countless interviews with other famous mountaineers about Marc-Andre. I found that out of anything I connected most with him through watching the documentary.  

 

Eminent Introductory – Marc-André Leclerc!

“When I’m in the mountains, life is so incredibly simple” – Marc-André Leclerc (Mortimer & Rosen, 2021) 

Marc-André was making breakthroughs and records in the mountaineering world, and almost no one knew. It wasn’t just his outstanding achievements that drew me in however, but it was his attitude and view on life that I felt a strong connection to. It was interesting to learn that he learned by going outdoors and doing as well. He was someone who did not enjoy learning in the classroom, and I can relate to that. Marc also learned a lot by figuring out skills and puzzles on his own through his rock climbing and hiking. I find that its easier (and more fun) to learn that way as well. As learners I think we both are ambitious in our passions and goals. Marc and I both love the outdoors. He was a solo climber who would spend weeks out in the woods camping and climbing with his girlfriend, while I on the other hand will jump at any chance of hiking I can get. He has a connection and love for being up on the mountains and alpines that I can really connect with. Although I have not climbed many huge mountains in my day, I am hoping that I one day will climb many. We were also both raised in a family who encouraged our passions , which I am thankful for.

For one, I feel that Marc is a pretty determined person. He has a goal in mind and works and figures out ways to achieve that, which I try to do as well. He was a resourceful person and worked with what he had at the time. This is think is something that I both have, and try to work on. On both levels I think Marc André and I are both generally happy people, we both want to experience and explore. Part of what Marc-André does is what I want to do in TALONS. He pursues his passions and goals for the sake of himself and his love for it, not for the approval or fame of someone else. He climbed because he found true enjoyment in it, the exploration of it all being his drive. I’d like to pursue my own passions in TALONS and explore and experience as much as I can.  Marc is a technically trained climber, which I am most definitely not. While I may be your average hiker, I have no experience in climbing or mountaineering like he has. I have a pretty good amount of knowledge in technical climbing, and a close enough connection with the sport. I am also not able to connect with him as much because he is a guy. While I don’t identify with being a dude, I don’t think that gender really has an impact on the subject and areas I would be looking at. 

Marc is mainly known for his mind-blowing winter solos of Torre Egger in Patagonia, and the Emperor Face of Mount Robson in which he was the first. In his lifetime he was doing all sorts of crazy climbs and adventures solo that he was inspiring and shocking people all over the world. Marc will be known for his crazy solos for sure, but it is his story and the impact that he left on those around him that will remain as well. In the documentary about him, The Alpinist, they talk about not only his achievements, but interviewed those who met him, all of which who said he left a positive and fresh impact. His ding on the universe will be his attitude and story. Drugs were pretty harmful to his passions and ultimate goal. He also struggled to get started when the education system didn’t work with him. All he wanted to do was get up and move when he was stuck in a desk to the point where he was homeschooled for a while.  Through these struggles however, it was ultimately the people who surrounded and supported him who got him through. His mom Michelle and girlfriend Brette really pushed him past those challenges. 

I think he’s worth remembering because he was so full of life. He didn’t make an effort himself to put his name out there despite his success, so I would be honoured to share his story! Especially since he died so young at the age of twenty-five, I think he deserves remembering. He was someone who truly loved what he was doing and the world around him. If we can learn anything from him, it would be to love our own world and push ourselves for the sake of ourselves. 

 

Next, I think I would like to learn more about his achievements and maybe parts of his adulthood/right out of high school. I think that would be really interesting. I also want to re-watch the documentary again, that was cool.  

 

References

MortimerP. & Rosen, N. (Directors). (2021). The Alpinist [Film]. Red Bull Media House & Sender Films. 

Franz, D. (2018). Marc-Andre Leclerc Remembered. Alpinist. http://www.alpinist.com/doc/web18w/wfeature-marc-andre-leclerc-remembered

Eminent Practice Peer Interviews – the Reflection!

Peer interviews this year were much different compared to previous years. It was a strange experience having to talk to your classmates in such a professional setting. For one, we were paired with people who we aren’t as close with to interview. If I’m being honest, I had talked to my interview partner and group quite a lot before hand, so I wasn’t as nervous as I would’ve been. This did make it a bit stranger though because I was so used to talking to them in casual conversation, it felt strange to have to ask about their school and personal life. 

 Starting the interview, I didn’t feel very prepared either. I wish I could’ve thought a bit more about my questions beforehand. The questions that I prepared either felt too personal or too base level, so next time I want to take the time to really think about the questions I wanted to ask before. It also took my group a while to start our interviews. We didn’t really know how to start them and who was supposed to interview who. This resulted in us starting a bit late and running a bit late as well. There was also a problem with how we were all going to sit in the interview. Since there were four of us in the small, cramped area of the hallway, we took a bit to adjust and find the perfect seating arrangement. Eventually, we found that it was best if we faced our interview partners and had the ‘critique-er’ diagonally. This especially worked because we were able to see the other persons’ face and how they were responding to the questions (well, as much of their face that we could see).  

During the interviews, I found that I really much preferred being the one interviewed rather than the interviewer. This may be my narcissism talking, but it was so much more comfortable and easier to talk about something you definitely know about, yourself. When being interviewed by my partner, I tried to make it as comfortable for them. I answered the questions as directly as possible and would make small talk and small jokes too. My partners’ questions were really well articulated, and it made the interview process all the better. It was very strange to have to have a one-on-one conversation with someone and have two other people there watching and taking notes.  

When I was the one interviewing, I immediately felt more nervous. The pressure of having someone take notes on your performance, and someone answering the questions that you’re coming up with was something I had not felt before. When I was interviewing my partner, I sometimes felt like I was so worried about saying the wrong thing, pausing and stumbling over my words, or asking a dumb question that it was hard to focus on actually taking in what the person was saying. I remember focusing so hard on having a point that the person was saying that I could later inquire or expand upon, that I almost couldn’t hear the rest of what they were saying. I don’t think this was very good as the point of the interview is to take in the information that the person was saying. I also found that I would overdo some parts in an effort to show that I was listening. I would sometimes monopolize the conversation by talking and responding to the person so much that it felt more like a conversation than an interview. I think next time I should overall just calm down and chill before interviewing, as I do pretty stupid things when I’m nervous.  

When critiquing the interviews, I was able to gain a lot of knowledge just by watching them interact. I was watching my critique partner interview their partner, and I was able to notice what they could improve on and how that could also apply to my own interview skills. For example, I learned a lot about long winded and layered questions than I ever would have just listening to myself interview someone else. It was also very strange to have to listen in on a one sided conversation. I kept feeling like I should be contributing but then catching myself and remembering that it was in fact an interview. I definitely also was able to gain a lot of know-how just by critiquing someone else.  

The interviews in whole were a good experience I think. I felt a lot more confident in my interview skill afterwards and am less worried about interviewing a complete stranger. Plus, now I know a bit more about my fellow classmates! 

Intro Blog Post – The Reflection!

Commenting and looking through other blog posts this year was not only interesting, but also really helpful towards my own learning! I really enjoyed reading through the posts and finding out more about my peers and their interests, I think that it’s always really cool to listen to someone talk about their passions. I was able to learn a bit more about my classmates as well, even the ones I have known for a year now. By reading though the blogs, I was able to get ideas and inspirations for what to research next or how to write/format my next posts. It was especially the comments and the helpful criticism that I will definitely keep in mind for the future. I appreciated the sense of community that looking and commenting on blogs posts brought! By reading and commenting, it felt like we were all in the same boat and working towards this common goal, even though we had all such different people and passions. Some people in my group didn’t have their post upwhich made it difficult to comment on, and it was also a bit disjointed and unorganized getting everyone in my small group to post their blog posts on teams. I think next time, I will definitely be more organized with my group, and I will have so many new ideas and inspiration for my next blog post! 

Louisa May Alcott – Introductory Blog Post

“I want to do something splendid…
Something heroic or wonderful that won’t be forgotten after I’m dead…
I think I shall write books.” (
Alcott, 1868, Chapter 13 p. 4)

 

Not only did Louisa May Alcott change the world with her books, but she was also an inspiring and passionate individual. Alcott’s words and writing were what drew me in at first. The way that she expressed emotions with the most poetic words was so perfect and comforting to me.  She also had a passion for her writing, whether it be in poetry or writing novels. Although I lack the novels to show, I too have a passion for writing and poetry! Louisa May and I both enjoyed running outside and spending time playing outdoors. Her family was big on education and exercise as well. She believed strongly in women’s rights, which is something that I have a passion for. Alcott was also a creative person when it came to coming up with stories. I would like to think myself creative when it comes to making art or music too. She was determined to write, and wrote many of her main characters as strong, independent women. I can relate to this determination, although not in my writing, but through the way I can get really caught up in a task that I want to succeed in and get done.  

“Let us be elegant or die!” – Louisa May Alcott, Little Women

Louisa May was a strong person who didn’t have a care for what others thought of her. She had a passion for running outside, writing, and stood up for feminism all when it was looked down upon to do so. Her writing inspired many people as I hope to inspire others, and I can only hope to be as strong and confident as Louisa May! The way that she did what she loved without the fear of judgement stopping her is what I aspire to do every day.  One way that Alcott and I might diverge is that fact that she did what she did for the money. She grew up in a poor household and as a result was motivated by the thought of money. While this may be a generational or time sensitive topic, I can understand Louisa’s motivations. I think that it is perfectly reasonable to have to do something for the sake of money (and I am very lucky to not be in that situation). I think putting yourself into different shoes is always beneficial to expanding your perspective and understanding of the world however. I look forward to being able to compare and contrast the different worldviews and motivations that Louisa and I have! 

 

 

Louisa May Alcott changed the way people in her time looked at women through her books. The writing of her novels like “Little Women” used realistic representations of women that reached out to many at the time. Her characters spoke to many people personally and changed the way women were wrote in novels, and thought of in society.  Louisa’s most famous book “Little Women”, thought published in 1868, has never failed to speak to the present generations. Despite its age, the novel tells realistic and relatable characters for young women of every age. People find themselves in the books and its world, making it a childhood story for people around the world. The books and iterations of the story have been popular and beloved up since 1868, and will continue to be! As a female writer in a predominantly male dominated society, Alcott had her work cut out for her. Her stories of unmarried, headstrong women did not fit in with the married housewife that existed in the stories at the time. Between caring for her family, sickness, and being financially stable, Alcott managed to find the time to write. Alcott, though she loved writing, needed money. She had the idea that if she was richer, she would be much happier.  

Louisa May spoke to so many people long after her death through her writing. She was way ahead of her time in terms of her views on what women should be allowed to do. I think that anyone who manages to still speak to those tens of tens of years after they die, had something special about them.  Not only did Alcott manage to outlive herself through writing, but she also stood up for feminism, anti-slavery and taking a run outside in the 1800’s! I think she stands for doing what you love without caring about others. Her books are a triumphant tribute to life and love and all the hardships that come with that we can all learn from.  

For the next phase of my research, I want to try and read through the book Little Women, or read another one of Louisa May’s pieces. I will probably not finish either, but I would like to get started on them. I also think that looking deeper into the personal life of Louisa May such as family and youth would be interesting. There is a lot of emphasis on her famous works, but I would like to know a bit more about her life before.

Citations 

Quotes 

Alcott, L.M. (1868) Little Women. Roberts Brothers 

Other Sources 

Norwood, A.R. (2017). Louisa May Alcott. National Women’s History Museum. https://www.womenshistory.org/education-resources/biographies/louisa-may-alcott 

Brockell, G. (2019) Girls Adored ‘Little Women.’ Louisa May Alcott did not. The Washington Post. https://www.washingtonpost.com/history/2019/12/25/girls-adored-little-women-louisa-may-alcott-did-not/ 

Remote Learning/Digital Projects Reflection~

What are your thoughts on hybrid learning compared to hybrid learning? Which format did you find worked the best?

This year we had two different formats for learning, one being hybrid and the other being learning groups. Personally, I preferred the learning groups to the hybrid style. Learning groups felt much more like a regular class as we were seeing each other full time everyday, I think it was the regularity and consistency of it that made it more comfortable. Though I did love being at home more in the mornings or afternoons during hybrid learning, I found it to be a lot more start and stop. With classes like humanities, we were only able to do so much in 2 hours and then at home the next day it felt like a lull in the learning or class. I found that the online part of hybrid learning was also a bit cumbersome because of the video chats. For example, in math this year, there would be long durations of silence because no one would turn on their cameras or mics and it overall just felt very strange. I definitely prefer being able to talk face to face and interact with my teachers and classmates in a classroom fulltime compared to half online and in person.  

 

How has technology benefited you throughout hybrid learning? 

Technology has always been a big part of my school experience, especially this year. I found that the most helpful piece of technology to me was my laptop, and specifically teams and my school email during hybrid learning. Teams was really helpful in getting assignments to and back from teachers when we were working at home. It also made it easy to get messages out to the entire team and the teacher, like when we had to ask a question that benefited the entire class. If there were any announcements like a short-notice call on teams, it made it easier to notify the entire class. I also utilized my school email a lot during online learning. Since we weren’t in school as often for the classes that were online, emails made it easier to ask questions or communicate directly with the teacher. We also used emails a lot to send in schoolwork (leadership reflections) or other longer assignments. There were a lot of times when I used my school email to reach out and communicate with other teachers that I didn’t know or couldn’t visit their classroom.  

 

How has technology impeded you throughout hybrid learning?

I found that technology was also a hinderance this year. I had the most problems with connections and Wi-Fi at school and at home. I was only able to work on online assignments when I was at home, so when I had to work in the car while waiting for my brothers, I wasn’t able do much. There were also multiple problems when I thought I had saved or because I was offline it didn’t save my word document and I had to restart. That was really frustrating because there were many times when I had almost finished the assignment but then made a mistake in saving it, which had caused all my progress to be lost. I also remember trying to collaborate or work in a group with others online being very frustrating. The communication online was difficult at times because of the barrier of having screens in front of us, and social cues when talking over video were also less evident. 

 

Is there anything caused by hybrid learning this year that you hope o keep next year?

One part of hybrid learning that I want to keep next year is the freer/longer deadlines. When we were given online assignments for the week, many teachers told us to complete them by the end of the week. This meant that we could complete the on our own time and pace. I’m not completely sure how it works in high school, but I know that in middle school we didn’t get a lot of weekly assignments that we were able to complete at our own pace. I found that it allowed me to prioritize other homework when needed and forced me to learn to schedule my week out so that I was able to get the homework done. I hope that this is something that stays next year. 

 

Two projects in school that utilized technology~

Prom Queen  – Beach Bunny~ a cover by Kalayla 

My In-Depth Project this year was bass guitar, and I used a video to showcase my learning. I used a phone to film my videos and then used my editing experience to overlay the music onto my bass guitar so that you could still hear the bass over the music. I found that it was an engaging and fun way to show people what I’ve learned and it seemed that people really enjoyed my covers as well. The YouTube platform also made it much easier to share my videos so that I could monitor and upload them as I wanted. I feel that overall, this was much more entertaining since covid prevented me from preforming live, I was able to share my music even in the event of an online In-Depth. 

 

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1pHavDFQ33cJd7Wm9YOPtUZdR4VCcNcIXRDtCdcfxEW8/edit?usp=sharing 

When we were working on the Confederation debates with my group, we used Google docs to collaborate with each other. It was an extremely useful tool because we were able to leave and share resources with each other through the doc. We could look at each other’s notes as we progressed and could ‘monitor’ the progress of our group so that we could support those who we saw struggling. Another great feature that we utilized in Google docs was when we were writing and editing our final speeches. The editing mode allowed us to suggest edits to the writer without changing the original text. This definitely made it easier to give feedback and support each other when looking for improvements. I found Google docs to be very helpful when working on a group project. 

In-Depth – Final Blog Post!

Hello~

Welcome to my final project for In-Depth this year (thanks for stopping by)!

 

For the past 5 months, I’ve been working to learn the bass guitar. With the help of my mentor, I learned how to pluck strings, play scales and arpeggios, and play along to songs. I came to understand how the bass plays its part in music with it’s repetitive low sounding notes keeping time and melody from the background. I’ve had a blast learning and have gotten even more excited about the instrument as time went on.

Thanks to my mentor, Tito Paul, as well! He was always so enthusiastic about the bass guitar and willing to answer any questions I had. Your excitement was contagious!

 

Now we get to the project itself.

To celebrate my learning over the course of In-Depth, I decided to learn 4 of some of my favourite songs. I practiced and memorized the fingering, and finally, filmed them all. Throughout this entire process, I challenged my skills in not only string plucking or fingering, but also reading bass sheet music, keeping time with the song and performing/playing in front of a camera. They’re nowhere near perfect, of course, but I’m happy with how each turned out. Now, they can all be accessed through the links below for your viewing pleasure! Feel free to pick and choose what songs pique your interest. (It might be useful as well to right click on the links below and click open in new tab)

 

If you need somewhere to start, Prom Queen and Space Girl  are probably my top 2 favourites

Prom Queen by Beach Bunny

Space Girl by Frances Forever

Kyoto by Phoebe Bridgers

Sophia by Clairo

 

As a closing note, despite Covid getting in the way and putting restrictions on almost everything. everyone involved with In-Depth this year did amazing! Whether you participated, mentored, organized or simply encouraged, thankyou for seeing it through until the end. Congrats!

 

Happy In-Depth-ing (:

In-Depth – Blog Post #6

Progress Report

Hello! Over the course of the spring break and time between my last blog post, I made a lot of progress on my In-Depth. I had a meeting with my mentor over spring break since we weren’t available to have one the weekend getting back to school. I’d say the skill I worked on the most over the break was song-playing. I had a lot of free time during the last week of the break and spent around thirty minutes every day playing around on the bass. There were a few little ways that I changed how I played as I practiced. For one, I changed the way I plucked the strings. Originally, I had been playing the strings with my thumb, which was an easier way to begin playing. As I watched more videos of others playing the bass, I noticed how instead of having their arm over the body and using their thumb to pluck the strings, they had their arm resting on top of the body and their hand hanging over the strings to pluck.  

“‘Are you using your pick or your fingers?’  ‘Oh I’m just using my thumb.’ ‘Oh yeah that’s how I used to play using my thumb, and then I switched to using my fingers. But I actually like using the pick better.’” 

 When I experimented with this method, I found that it was much faster to pluck one string after the other (like how using multiple fingers to hold strings on the fretboard made it easier to switch between notes). One of the other new ‘skills’ that I worked on this break was the song playing. At first, during the meeting with my mentor, we started with the song Watermelon Sugar by Harry Styles.  

“‘You know that song that I asked you to listen to?’  ‘Yeah, that Harry Styles one?’  ‘You know that song right?’  ‘Yeah I remember it was on the radio a lot.’ ‘It’s a really easy song, it’s only four chords.’”  

We talked about how this song was easy to play because it was the same 4 notes replaying throughout the song.  

“‘So after every bar after every four beats, you change notes, so it’s (2,3,4)~ and then start again, that’s the whole song!”  

After this meeting, I was excited at the fact that I was able to play songs, so I had looked up a few tutorials for the song on youtubeAfter watching a few bass tutorials for Watermelon Sugar, I was able to play a slightly more complicated version. (What I was practicing with my mentor was a much simpler version  

“‘These are like the bass notes.’  ‘Like if you were to play the chords, they would be the bass notes?’  ‘Yeah we’re just going to be hitting the notes. He does a bunch of other fancy things but for now we’ll use it as our practice song.’”  

After learning the Harry Styles song, I was opened to the possibility of youtube bass tutorialsLater I tried a Phoebe Bridgers song (Motion Sickness) and a Lou Reed Song (Walk on the Wild Side). In the process of learning these songs on youtube, I had to learn how to read bass sheet music. While this might not seem interesting, I found it to be one of the coolest ‘discoveries’ I made during the project. Because I have the experience of being able to read piano sheet music, I was able to pick up bass sheet music pretty quickly. There were many small differences between the two, like numbers instead of note values and 4 (string) lines instead of 5 staff lines. These and many other smaller details made bass music so interesting to me. One other big part of learning any sheet music for an instrument means you can play any song if you have the music for it, which is super exciting to me. Other than all the sheet music and songs, I ‘ve also been working on my scales this week. I did more research on the other scales and have been practicing all the other normal exercises (semitone scales, arpeggios etc.) 

 Video

This is a video that was taken during the last week of spring break when I learned how to play Watermelon Sugar on the bass. I hadn’t felt comfortable enough to play with my other fingers at the time, so I used my thumb to pick the strings instead.

Video #4

How to Have a Beautiful Mind 

This year for In-Depth, we’re using the book “How to Have a Beautiful Mind” by Edward De Bono to guide us through the project. The book talks about how to have a beautiful mind (as the title explains) and how to have beautiful conversation with others. Over the course of a few weeks, we’ll learn about the skills talked about in the book and apply them to our In-Depth project. This week we read chapters nine and ten.

Chapter Nine

In Chapter 9 of De Bono’s How to Have a Beautiful Mindhe talks about concepts. Concepts is a word that I throw around a lot or use as a synonym for other words, but De Bono talks about it in a way where it holds a lot of importance. Concepts are described as ‘parent’ or big ideas to smaller more specific ones. For example, the books uses the example of a parking meter. The ‘concept’ of a parking meter is to gain money from the need of car parks, but the actual parking meter itself is a specific way that the concept is carried out. The big takeaway from this chapter was that as we learn a new skill, there will be many big concepts that will require you to navigate and figure out. For example, there were a lot of new concepts introduced to me as I learned the bass. Concepts like ‘getting a sound out of the strings’ and  ‘getting many different (note) sounds out of bass’ were some of the beginning ideas that I was introduced to. Recently, the concepts that I’ve been trying to wrap my head around are ones such as ‘playing bass along with a song’, ‘getting the right sounds/sound effects out of the bass’ and getting faster and more accurate when playing bass’ 

 Chapter Ten

In How to Have a Beautiful Mind Chapter 10, De Bono talks about what alternatives are and how important they are to learning/living. As the word suggests, alternatives are extra/optional choices or ways of doing tasks. They give you flexibility and room to do your own yet still getting you to the planned destinationOne of the important parts to alternatives is that none of them will be the ‘best’ way perse. Most of the time, the ‘best’ way is determined on what kind of person you yourself are and not the alternatives themselves. My mindset going into this project was very much based on my knowledge of learning an instrument classically, mainly because it was one of the predominant ways I had ever learned and instrument. My mentor, having learned the bass by himself, offered the alternative of a much more free and flexible way of learning. For example, when learning scales, we didn’t look at the structure of the scales or specific notes in the scale, but instead we learned the sounds of the scale and how close to do re mi scale it would sound like. I found this way of learning to be much more refreshing and free because it didn’t have a set structure to how you learned. If I were to look back to the other options I had for mentors, I can somewhat predict the alternatives to learning they would’ve offered. One of my possible mentors was a teacher, and I think the alternative they would’ve offered would be somewhere in between a classical and freeform approach. I feel like that also would’ve been interesting to experienceIt wouldn’t have strayed too far from my original approach, but given enough room for freedom still.  

 Final Project

For my final project, I’m planning to do a prerecorded online concert of some sort. I plan to choose 2-4 songs that I want to play/preform and practice my way up to a point where I feel comfortable playing them. In that specific part of the project, I plan to focus more on the playing songs/finger picking aspect of my learning rather than the scales/arpeggio and more theory/practical based parts. I also was thinking about the interactive and learning part of my final project. I want to put the online concert in a presentation where I can show and teach some of the theory/practical parts of my learning. I hope that when people see my presentation, they can see the different ways in which you can learn an instrument and what parts of learning an instrument can be exciting and worthwhile. 

Concerning Quotes

This week, I didn’t include as many quotes because most of the topics discussed in this post were about personal learning that quotes from a call wouldn’t back up/support.

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