When Pasakorn and I were told that we would be representing our group to present our IH project on the ‘Recollections of a World War ll Survivor’ at the Apple Leadership Summit, I was really excited for it. Getting to present at an international summit, let alone for Apple, was a once in a lifetime opportunity and I was thankful for it.
I wasn’t able to sit down and prepare the slides to present at the summit with Pasakorn because our schedules clashed (due to CCA, other projects, etc). We could only discuss about the preparation during the few minutes we had in between classes and after school. We communicated mainly via email, and we sent drafts of the slides to each other. Pasakorn created the main frame of the presentation slides, whilst I filled in all the details of the project and edited it. We were able to discuss about our slides with Ms Tay a few days before the actual presentation, and we made the necessary adjustments.
Although I had other projects and performance tasks going on, I didn’t feel that the preparation for the summit was a burden. I looked forward to the summit, and I was sure I would gain many new experiences from it.
At the actual event, the project presenters had to wear the school’s formal attire. I felt proud to be able to represent SST at an international level. With the formal attire, we portrayed ourselves smartly and I think that gave a good first impression to the educators present at the showcase.
As educators from around the world poured into the showcase area, I was nervous, because I was afraid I might mess up while presenting to them. Having said that, the nervousness wore off as the educators were friendly and encouraging. They seemed genuinely interested in our project. They would constantly praise our work, saying things like “Good job!” or “Excellent!”. They also gave us suggestions, such as uploading our podcast online so that others would be able to access it.
Pasakorn and I shared a booth with YuChong and See To. We were both presenting the same project, Recollections of a World War ll Survivor, but they presented on the framework of the project whilst we presented our final product and personal experiences we gained (such as conducting an interview). The atmosphere of the showcase was pleasant, and the smile that was constantly on my face was not a forced one.
At the end of the showcase, I was exhausted from walking around in my new court shoes and talking for hours. I made friends with a few of the SOTA students who were there that night and also the girls from the Presbyterian Ladies' College in Perth, Australia.
For the workshop facilitation, we had to become journalists and document the educators’ thinking process in creating a learning space. We were given an iPod touch and a Macbook White to take pictures and document their discussion online on the Wiki page created for the session. That’s exactly what I did most of the time during the workshop facilitation, although sometimes the educators would ask me for my opinions.
Over the two days, as we did a lot of talking and/or moving around, I was pretty thirsty most of the time and I felt like I would die of thirst if I didn’t get some water. Fortunately, the staff from Apple did not neglect our needs and constantly made sure to provide us with bottled drinks.
Things that you have done well
I think I have done well speaking to the educators, as I gave them honest responses and tried to be a pleasant presenter by smiling a lot (I hope I didn’t look fake) even though my feet was aching because I wasn’t used to wearing court shoes. I also made sure to approach any of the educators who seemed to be interested in our project.
Things that you could have done better
I think I could have been more prepared in answering the questions. Whenever I didn’t know how to answer a question posed to me by an educator, I would ask Pasakorn to answer the educator. I know what I did was not appropriate by redirecting the question to someone else, but at that moment of panic, I was unable to subtly avoid the question.
I am grateful to the teachers who chose my group’s project to present at the summit. If my group had not been chosen, I wouldn’t have been given this rare opportunity to present at the Apple Leadership Summit. I would also like to thank Ms Tay for helping me and Pasakorn in our preparation for the project presentation. Also not forgetting other teachers present at the summit that helped us.
Thank you :)
Norullayaley bte Mohd Ikbal