May 17, 2013


I originally started this blog as a required senior project for my school. In recent weeks I have been very busy studying for finals and AP tests, so I did not post regularly. Now that my senior project is finished, I no longer create educational posts every Saturday night; however, I do hope to still post about birthday celebrations in my family.

Seniors at my high school have been busy presenting their senior projects this week. We had to sign up for time slots last month. Each two-hour presentation time slot consists of four students presenting in the presence of two teachers, one of whom is the senior project coordinator at my high school. Presentations continue into next week, but I signed up for the earliest time slot, which was on Tuesday morning. (I wasn't able to post about my presentation until now because I was busy with AP tests.)

Prior to presenting, seniors had to compile a portfolio or annotated bibliography and write a three page reflection paper about their projects. I chose to keep an annotated bibliography. What with all the research I have done for my educational posts, my annotated bibliography was 43 pages. I actually really enjoy putting sources into MLA format, so I did not mind having to keep such an extensive works cited page. Thankfully I didn't have to print it! I had no problem meeting the three page requirement for the reflection paper; my paper was over four pages since there is so much to say about birthdays.

I presented third in my time slot. The first student had created a recipe book and discussed how she hopes to continue cooking in college. She even brought in samples of her food, which was great. The second student had studied how diet and exercise affected his health. He was very informative and had obviously done a lot of research about different factors that affect health. I was next. I presented a PowerPoint that discussed my lifelong fascination with birthdays, my decision to keep a blog for my senior project, and my experiences researching the many topics I covered in my educational posts. I then showed this blog to my classmates and teachers. I also showed them my annotated bibliography at the request of the senior project coordinator. The fourth student, who was an exchange student in Germany last year, had taught German to two high school juniors. She showed us a video of the two boys speaking in German (with English subtitles so everyone could understand it!) All the presentations were extremely interesting. I really enjoyed learning about everyone's unique projects; I wish I could have seen other people's presentations too.

Soon after I got home, I received an email with my senior project evaluation form. I am proud to say that I got honors on my project (the three categories were fail, pass, and honors.) Seniors were graded in five areas (preparation, research, project, presentation, and reflection paper) on a 1-to-5 scale, where 1 indicated no effort, 3 indicated that requirements were met, and 5 indicated that a student went above and beyond the requirements. I got a 5 on preparation, a 5 on research, a 4 on the project itself, a 3 on the presentation, and a 4 on my reflection paper.

Being Birthday Keeper has been a great experience for me this year. I am much more aware of other cultures and their celebrations and understand research techniques that will help me in college. I was very happy to receive such a high grade on my project; I can end high school proud of my accomplishments. On a similar note, I have been named salutatorian of my class and am glad AP tests are over because I have to write a speech for graduation!

Birthday shoutouts to Uncle Jim, Uncle Norm, Uncle Martin, and Jeff
Half birthday shoutouts to Max