In my last couple years of elementary school, I was involved in the mental health initiative Understand Us. I had the opportunity to learn about mental health, as well as make a difference in my community at a young age. I participated in two campaigns, “Vulnerable is Beautiful” and “Share Your Recipe.” For both campaigns, our class worked together to organize a community mental health event. We were assessed based on our participation and effort in the organization of the event as part of health class. I was the head coordinator of our silent auctions, which means I spent hours calling local businesses, collecting donations, and setting everything up. It was a great learning experience, as it taught me leadership skills and the benefit of hard work. I also learned a great deal about mental health, as we participated in workshops and had the opportunity to talk with the founders of Understand Us. This was by far one of the best learning experiences I had throughout elementary school. Reflecting on this experience has helped me realize the importance of process over product and has proven to me that quizzes and written exams are not always the best form of assessment.
I discovered my love for drama and performance in grade nine. I am extremely thankful to have received the opportunity to take drama courses throughout high school, as I may have otherwise never even become aware of my interest in the subject. I feel in love with drama within the first few days of taking it, and it is now my university minor. Initially, I enjoyed drama because it was incredibly fun for me and it was something I looked forward to every day. However, now that I have completed multiple university level drama education courses, it has become much more to me than just fun. Drama is one of the best ways to explore topics in an environment that is safe and engaging for students. It encourages students to be creative, express themselves, explore their opinions on current societal issues, and have their voices heard. Drama has taught me to become more confident, expressive, open-minded, and understanding of others. When I become a teacher, I plan on using my knowledge of drama education to assist in school productions such as plays and musicals.