P.S - Probably not my last post. I kinda like doing this.
I found that the most challenging part of this project was to find a correlation between the topics we looked in globalization and what we see around us here in Philly.
Most of the images I collected with Jen when we were allowed to go out for images. There was some stuff i knew that I wanted to take pictures of because I already knew it would connect to one of themes. I also took pictures of stuff that I wasn't sure how it exactly connected but knew they could be interesting to talk about.
My favorite image is of the massive amount of bikes we have in the stair well. it's my favorite because I think it shows that we leaders in more ways than one. A good amount of teachers bike to and from school and some students do too.
I don't like hot weather
If it were right in the middle at 75
I'd be one happy camper
P.S - I'll admit this is super cheesy. I take full responsibility.
Ms. Hull: "Marchella, I saw your senior picture the other day and it was so pretty!"
Me "Ummmm...Thank you Ms. Hull!"
Random complements when stressed make you feel pretty awesome.
I used to love you. When you first started out as a small idea. But now I must turn you into a product. Deep down though I still love you.
Jen: "Stop denying your awesomeness!"
As plucking pedals off a daisy
I wish I knew if you loved me
For my capstone I decided to do a series of blog post. These blog posts represent big themes I see throughout a freshman drama class. As I am student teaching and interacting with these students I write about big themes that I see happening and how these tools can be used outside the classroom. I decided to do this for my benchmark because drama has affected my life in a tremendous way and I know that a lot of budget cuts across the nation has lead to cuts in art programs such as drama. By blogging about what I see and the incredible growth I see in my students as a person and as a performer I hope to make people think twice about art programs and there significance to a student’s learning.
I remember the very first drama class green stream had. Their first task was to imagine that they were eating an orange. Seems easy enough, right? But there’s more to it than that. You have to imagine the shape, how it feels to dig your nail in to it’s skin and start to peel it and even how you eat it. A lot of thought goes into this. A lot of imagination goes into this.I remember Mr. Kay saying to his class that we as a society have labeled imagination as a bad thing after a certain point. After a certain period in a child’s life making up new worlds and imagine things seem immature. But we tend to forget that everything that’s around us was once imagined. From the house you live in to plane in the sky before it was created it was imagined.
As I am writing this I’m thinking about what imagination is. I can’t really define it though. When I looked it up on oxford dictionary “the faculty or action of forming new ideas, or images or concepts of external objects not present to the senses”. I agree with most of this definition. Except when it says that the new ideas, images and concepts are not present to the senses. Because every time I see my kids come up with new scenes and act them out on stage I can see what they’ve been imagining. See the detail that goes into it. I can see their creation.
I’m a pretty timid person. Over time though being up on stage has allowed my voice to flourish. I’ve noticed kids are pretty loud in drama class because of its looser format. Until they get on stage that is. Some people become quieter and some people use the same voice they would use to talk to one person.
As we know in our society our voice is extremely important. If you don’t speak your mind when you should people will ignore you. And that goes for acting as well. If my eyes start to wonder away from an actor’s performance that means that they’re not doing a good job of keeping my attention. We want people to notice us, to listen and grasp what we are saying. And that’s where drama comes in. We show kids how to project there voice and add purposeful movements to it so they can be noticed on stage.For the first half of the semester the kids weren’t even allowed to use their voices. They had to learned how to engage their audience with purposeful movements. Once they were able to master the skills needed to keep their audience engage they were allowed to use their voices. At first it was hard for them to put everything together. But eventually they learned the art of storytelling. Which will help them throughout all their classes and make what they say more meaningful. Because sometimes we take our voices for granted; letting anything come out our mouths or we lock our voices up assuming what we say will not be important enough. I’ve seen the transformations with my own eyes. Someone who walks through those drama room doors and is super timid and has major stage fright hears the supportive claps of their peers and applies the knowledge that they’ve learned end up more outgoing. And I’m not saying that it’s a drastic change but it’s still great to see them come out of their shells.
Overcoming Stage Fright
This year I’ve learned that stage fright comes in all shapes and sizes. I thought that people who usually have stage fright are people who are timid. But this year I met a guy who is extremely outgoing and has a huge personality but has major stage fright. I wasn’t expecting him to say that he had stage fright when he first got up on stage and it was a huge shock to me. I was wondering how someone who has such a presence off the stage could be so scared to be on the stage. Then I realized that being on stage is a whole different ball game. Having people fixated on what your doing or saying can be nerve racking for anyone. Luckily though in this drama class we give constant encouragement. Mr. Kay makes a point of it to clap for whoever comes of stage and whenever they leave the stage. At the end of all performances students are asked if they want to give shout-outs to any of their peers. These techniques help give students confidence and praise. Once you realize that most people are rooting for you rather than judging you it easier to let stage fright fade away. So hopefully the skills we teach and the encouragement we give will kids concur stage fright on and off the stage.
SLA is not your average high school. We don’t have AP classes because every class we have is already at an AP level. We have what is called “Benchmark Season” which is when every student is working on 4 benchmarks for there 4 four major classes. These projects are usually worth at least 20% of your grade and need to show what you’ve learned over the course of the quarter. Needless to say it can get pretty stressful around here. So when kids come to drama they leave their stressors at the door. We play various improv games and let them make up their own scenes with few requirements attached to them. Because in the end we know that this is the place for them to have fun, relax a little but still learn a lot. When talking to my students about what they’ve learned throughout the year and how it has affected them I sensed a feeling of relief from them. A feeling of relief that at least they have these classes like drama, art and music that aren’t about straight up learning facts and figures but teach you just as much anyway. Because the truth is what we learn in our Math, Science, History and English classes is great and interesting and it’s great to show what we’ve learned but it’s also great to take a step back and just learn great skill as well. Sometimes in the mist of it all we forget to laugh, to have fun. And here at SLA we do a great job of balancing the two.
I’m sorry to crush your dreams today
But I have to inform you
That you will never meet anybody more awesome than me
When you look up kind in the dictionary
My name will be its definition
I save people from burning buildings on a weekly basis
And the sound of my angelic voice silences a newborn’s crying
My voice is smooth and soft during conversation
But when I get up on stage
To recite a poem
The fiery string of words that spill out my mouth
Triggers the fire station’s alarm system
My laugh is literally infectious
There is no way around it
If I laugh you WILL be laughing with me
Most of the time at my own jokes
Because I’m just that funny
And please don’t get me started on my smile
The minute I fold my mouth up
Part my lips
And show the most glorious arrangement of teeth you’ve ever seen
You will run 10 miles
Just to get me what I want
And most of all my writing is fantastic
The spectacular way I string words together
Makes you believe anything I’m saying
And as you can tell from reading this right now
I’m pretty magnificent
And you will never ever meet anybody more awesome than me
You right there in the second row show me why I should care
Show me why I should fight for you
Show me what I lose every time
I decide to give up
Decide to stop fighting
Show me what I have already lost
What I have already given up
Because maybe then I’ll stop giving ya’ll up so easily
The makeshift memorial under their bedroom windows
Isn’t enough for me to feel guilty
The 3 minute segment on the news
Doesn’t pull my heart strings hard enough
Make me feel guilt
Make me feel guilty
That I’ve let drug dealers become our block captains
And crack houses become our community head quarters
Make me feel guilty
That I’ve stopped caring about this community
And the people within it
I complain about teens going rampant
Yet have stopped advocating for recreational places
I shake my head at the trash that riddles the street
But have yet to pick up a broom and sweep in front of my own front door
I’ve turned this into a hopeless place
Because I have given up my own dreams for it
So show me her
Show me him
Show me his homerun that won the game
His MVP trophy overtop the fireplace
Show me her favorite princess dress
And her prancing around in it
Show me the father who never got to see his daughter get married
And the mother who never got to see her kids graduate
Because I know I’ve turned this to a dreamless place
Where kids have no allies
And everybody has stopped caring
Where kids think all they can do is deal and steal
Because hope is passed on from generation to generation
And I have passed on none
So show me the innocent little girl
Who still thinks life is as sweet as can be
Make me realize that she is worth saving
Make me believe she can stopped this hopeless cycle
Help me to accept that she will show us
What happens if we work hard
That you may not reach your dreams
But that you’ll go pretty far
Because her bright light is infectious
I believe anything is possible
When I look into her honey brown eyes
But eventually this “everything is possible” phase
And that is when you have to nourish it
Because once you nurture a living thing
You believe you can do anything
And that it’s worth doing anything
It’s worth creating a blank slate with are streets
Because every piece of trash was just a hope that people thought would never come true
It’s worth painting a visual picture of hope in our community
With green grass and various colored flowers
Because hope is recognized by how we carry ourselves also
It’s worth telling our young ones to strive for the best
Because we’ve realized ourselves they could possibly succeed
Because eventually I want to stop feeling guilty
Not because I’ve stopped caring
But because I realized I have done everything I could
I want to stop flipping on the news and seeing a misguided teen I knew
But never said a word to
And instead see a kid that I know who did something great or didn’t
Because I know I did everything to help that kid
So hopefully there will be no need for me to feel guilty
Thanks Mean Green for being so awesome!
Creating this character in real time has been hard. I know she not the social media type so it's hard to "make" her that type. As I'm going along I'm still trying to figure out how to stretch this story out. It's kind of like I have to slowly evolve into this character to make this seem real. Hopefully, I'll be able to do that.
Why are putting High School on a pedestal?
Letting this "bitch stole my man" drama cloud your judgment
When truth be told this boy isn't even worth one drop of the perspiration rolling down your forehead
Why are putting High School on a pedestal?
Letting these childish labels like jock and nerd mess with your head
When you know they don't control your future
Knowing that one day you might see Johnny begging you for a dollar
And your thinking "Dang, I thought he was gonna be a baller."
Why are putting High School on a pedestal?
Your following the head cheerleader so you can get a status boost
While everybody knows in the real world that
Coattail riders have little self worth
So why are you putting High School on a pedestal?
Knowing that it’s just a 4 year phase
An obstacle in your way of
Living up to your full potential
So dry your tears
Dust yourself off
Stop being a puppet
And just be yourself
And realize that everything is gonna be ok
As long as you realize that High School doesn’t last forever
That statuses fade away
And remember to keep High School off that pedestal
Because it’s not even worth looking up to
Valentine’s day is just another day
Another day to read “Good morning babe. I love you with all my heart.”
On a sticky note
Stuck to the refrigerator door
Another day to receive a kiss on my forehead after every hug
Another day to receive my daily dose of chocolate
That I can’t live without
Another day to have my side tickled as we lay on the couch
My head resting on his shoulder
Letting all my stresses disappear
Valentine’s Day is just another day
To laugh at his stupid jokes
To smile until my face hurts
To hug him and contemplate
Never letting go
Valentine’s Day is just another day
To wonder how I became so lucky
To wish that forever really meant forever
To live every moment with him to the fullest
Valentine’s Day is just another day
To follow our everyday routine
Loving each other unconditionally
Like every day is Valentine’s Day
The freshman in Mr. Kay's drama class had just received an assignment. They were to get into pairs and tell each other about something embarrassing that has happened to them and act out each other's embarrassing moments on stage. I sat and watched them excitedly start to tell their partners their stories, bursts of laughter soon started to fill the room and it was fun to see them so excited. As I continued to watch them I hear somebody sit down and say
"So what's your story?" I turn around and saw a familiar face.
I had seen this girl around school but didn't know her personally. I gave her a confused look.
"So what's your story?" she said again
"Oh, I'm not in this class. I'm a senior. I student teach here." I said
The look of shock and sorrow on her face made me burst out into laughter. She had come in to say hi to Mr. Kay and had thought I was sitting alone missing out on all the fun. Too many times to count I have been asked or it has been assumed that I am a freshman. I feel bad that she felt so bad about it. Because it happens so often all I do is just laugh about it every time it does.
Don’t Stop Believing
Keep Holding On
Don’t Rain on My Parade
My Life Would Suck Without You
Just the Way You Are
It’s All Over
Right From the Start
Are You Ready for Love?
How did meat eating begin?
Meat eating has been said to go as far back as 2.5 million years for humans. Fossils of tools used to butcher meat are found to have gone back that far. It is believed that we started eating meat because of the competition for food between other species. Craig B. Stanford points to an example of this in the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park. This forest is the only forest where mountain gorillas and chimps live together. Chimps eat meat while Gorillas don’t meaning that they can coexist together because they have two different diets.
How meat eating affected the evolution of humans
Long ago when humans started to eat meat it triggered tons of evolutionary changes. For one thing, our jaws have gotten smaller so we can chew meat better. And because of our diets being chocked full of meat we have evolved to have an improved ability to process cholesterol and fat. Also, scientist say that eating meat helped our brains to grow bigger and our figure slimmer. All these positives from meat though did not happen until we started cooking meat. To get the caloric energy you get from meat you have to cook it. So we really didn’t start reaping the benefits of meat until we discovered fire.
Being a meat eater isn't all positive
But everything that has evolved from meat eating was not good. Because our jaws are downsized are teeth cannot fit inside. So it’s rare to find someone who has perfectly straight teeth that did not have any dental work on them. Also us evolving to cooking and using forks and knives has made out big teeth useless because our food is so soft.
Mayell, H. (2005, February 18). "evolving to eat mush": how meat changed our bodies. Retrieved from http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2005/02/0218_050218_human_diet.htm
Joyce, C. (Producer). (2010, August 2). Food for thought: meat-based diet made us smarter [Audio Podcast]. NPR Series: The Human Edge. Retrieved from http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=128849908
This picture from left is of castings of teeth from a chimpanzee, Australopithecus afarensis and a modern human