I mostly learned about slavery, given that that was what our topic. I learned about how the split between the North and the South could stall the compromise significantly and that even small topics could become big issues. It seemed to me that the overarching issues included slavery as well as taxation and representation. These compromises were found through many smaller committees and many days of debate. The convention shows a lot about our democracy by proving the effectiveness of splitting into smaller groups and being able to get to a compromise, even if you are not getting 100% of what you want.
I think collaboration went a lot better than I expected. I had never worked in such a large group, but I found it to be a lot of fun splitting off into groups by skills. Using emails to help with communication seemed to be the most important part of the collaboration process. I feel that everyone utilized email to make sure absences were known and where everyone was working. We ran into some issues regarding time, but by groups coming in after school, we were able to get it done.
Although I didn’t intend to in the beginning, by the end I had taken up a major leadership role. I learned a lot about my own work schedule and how much I love problem solving. Initially, I intended the groups to work as leaders each week, spreading out the leadership opportunities, but as the due date got closer and closer I slowly took on more jobs and began directing the group. I feel like I interacted with my peers well, I tried to allow for as many editing opportunities as possible, and if people couldn’t attend after school editing sessions, I wrote very detailed emails about what happened. I think I was effective. Our after school editing sessions were really effective and helped make our video a lot easier to understand and process. I really enjoyed this project. I didn’t stay after school just because I had to. I really liked editing the video, all the problem solving, and working with everyone to make a really good video.
Probably the only thing I would do differently would be to make sure our schedule was correct. I think that was really our only major issue and if we had noticed earlier, we wouldn’t have been so crunched for time. I think our split into groups worked well and if I did a similar project I would have split us up in the same way.
I think I got a lot better at communication as well as problem solving. I sent a lot of emails and tried to start each class with a briefing about what people have done and what we were doing for that day. I’m actually very proud of my editing summaries and I felt confident that I never had to re-explain something in class, but could direct people back to the email. I learned I really love problem solving. I had the most fun with the project when we had to completely change a scene or re-shoot stuff from a different angle. Overall, I’m really proud of the work we got done. I think we all worked well and, in the end, had a really good product.