There were many skills that were necessary to complete this project that I had learned in the past. One of these skills was how to make an infographic. I have made many infographics in the past, and this project allowed me to develop and cultivate the knowledge I already had on how to make a quality infographic. Another important skill that I had learned in the past was how to find dependable information through research. I spent a lot of time researching for this project, and I wouldn't have been as productive if I hadn't already had practice with both of these skills.
Present Experience -
The two most significant things that I contributed to my group for the project was my infographic, and the research I did for the final paper. I spent the most time on my infographic out of all the different aspects of the project. My group chose to all have different specific focuses for our infographics, I chose diet of Canadian lynx, while my other groups members chose habitat, reintroduction, etc. In terms of what was presented at exhibition, I think my work on the research paper was showcased the most, seeing as my infographic was not presented at the exhibition. I did the research section on the paper, and the pie chart showing the diet of the Canadian Lynx.
Throughout the entire project, the most difficult things were learning how to use venngage, and presenting at the exhibition. I had little to no experience with venngage before the project, and found it difficult to formulate ideas for my final product with this new program. But after spending a few hours learning how to use this new website I was able to come up with a solid idea for my infographic. At the exhibition, I was confused on exactly what I was supposed to present, and what exactly what I was expected to do. A little into the exhibition I started trying to present one of my group members infographics, which was difficult seeing as it was on information that I hadn't studied. Although this was difficult, I think I still got important information across to parents who came to the exhibition about my research paper and the infographic.
One assumption I had before doing research was that the Canadian Lynx population in Colorado is, and always was fairly stable. Once I started the paper, and began looking into the history of lynx in Colorado, I learned that they had actually gone extinct in 1975, and were reintroduced in 1999. This has made me a lot more aware of my affect on the wildlife around me whenever I go on a hike, or am driving through rural areas.
When I started this project, I knew almost nothing about Canadian Lynxes, and their history in Colorado and North America. Throughout the process of writing the research paper, I learned that the Canadian lynx went extinct in Colorado in 1975, and were reintroduced in 1999. Currently there isn't any specific data on the population of lynx in the Wolf Creek area, but it is estimated that there are about 150-200.
If I were to do this project again, I would spend more time researching infographics, and find a good template to go off of. Although I was fairly happy with my final infographic I think it could have been a lot better. I have done a few infographics for various projects throughout the years, and have never been fully satisfied with them due to either lack of good information, or the final product just not representing creativity. When creating infographics I generally find an example I like, try to copy it but with my information. For this project, I couldn't find any examples that I liked, so I just decided to make something up. My infographic, though it got information across, was not very creative or engaging. If I were to start over, I would definitely add more details, and create a more visually interesting final product.
Your Future -
One skill that I improved during this project that I might use in a future career is research. I have spent a fair amount of time researching in school throughout the years, and every time I practice more I become better at it. Most jobs require research, some more than others. Having the ability to do beneficial and productive research is key in doing well in most of my classes currently, and will stay important throughout my life.
A skill I wish I had before starting this project was how to use the program Venngage. I had very little experience with this website, and it took me a while to navigate it and be able to start my infographic. I most likely would have achieved a better final product if I had known how to use all the different aspects available. My infographic was fairly boring, seeing as I wasn't sure how to add different things with Venngage, and probably could have created a better piece of work by using a different program. Although using Venngage made creating my overall project harder, I think it's good to learn how to use different websites so you have options when looking to create another infographic.
The activities focused on in the project meshed very well with my learning style, because I like structured projects. I generally prefer writing research papers to fiction, so the assignments for this project were perfect for my learning style. The one part of this project I struggled with was creating the infographic, because I couldn't come up with a good idea for a while, in most of my classes I struggle with creativity, so coming up with an idea was kind of hard for me. Overall the tasks given were a good mix of challenge and straightforward.
After completing this project I will definitely change some of the ways I used to research for my other classes. When researching for the final product on Canadian Lynxes I ran into many circumstances where there was inconsistent data, so I had to find many reliable sources to find information that I can trust. In future projects, I will sure to find many sources so that I can prove that the data that I have is dependable and that I can use it in the final product.
The purpose of this project was to express our learning of the content concerning the essential question through creating a movie. We decided to represent our learning through a comedic horror movie that was based around genetic mutation. As an individual, I think that I met that purpose by doing my part in the process of creating a movie, and making a flipbook that contained all the relevant information we learned throughout the project about mitosis and meiosis. As an entire class, I felt like our final product did meet the purpose of the project, but due to lack of time wasn't able to follow original plans and create the movie that we had planned to show at exhibition.
Personally I feel like something I did well in this project was staying on task throughout the entire project. We had lots of freedom where it was easy to get off task, but during script writing and filming I felt that I did a good job sticking to my assignments. I feel like throughout the entire project our class effectively collaborated together so that we could present a final product at exhibition. Also at the end of the project there was talk of not finishing the movie and doing something else, but everyone in the class wanted to put in extra effort so we were able to create a finished movie in the time that we had.
I was part of multiple different teams during the movie project, but put most of my effort into the script. One challenge I experienced was not being too controlling in aspects of the project that I wasn't a part of. In many groups projects I take the role of the leader, and in this project I had to work on stepping back and let others lead. As a class, I think there were some challenges with staying on task. This project was very student driven, which meant that students were responsible for planning out what would be done each day, and there were a few days where very little was done. On a personal level to resolve these challenges in a future project, I can become more comfortable with having other peers be leaders, and as a class, I believe that we can work on these issues by making sure that everyone is involved in decision making so that students don't end of doing nothing. In this project collaboration played a key role in all aspects of making the movie. I felt that there was positive collaborations in this class, but only specific groups worked together. Felt that as an entire class there could have been more communication. In this project I collaborated with the various individual groups that I worked with, and I made sure that I was always an active member by communicating with all my group members and taking an equal amount of work as everyone else.
If I were to do this project I would take a very different approach to collaboration. I felt that although people did work together, the entire class was not working together. Individuals were collaborating with each other, but small groups weren't communicating. In future projects I will definitely attempt to get classes to work together as a whole. If this project were to be done again, I would keep the amount of freedom students have, and make sure to continue to have this project be student led. Although it was clear what content was necessary to include in our movies, I felt like I didn't have a very good understanding of the content before we started making the movie. Next time I would have liked to have more background information so I could better understand the science that was involved in our film.