Our Distinguished Achievement Project (…Dauntingly Advanced Pain? Definitely Adorable Product?) is finally done! We wrapped up months of research, work days, late-night Internet plunges, consultant advice, and mountains of information (plus a 1977 Playmor trailer somewhere in there) in 45 minutes. I’m very happy with how we presented all our hard work! No one broke an iPad… the power didn’t go out… I didn’t lose my voice… and neither did anyone else! (Seriously, our oral presentation was astonishingly smooth. Also, very quick: we actually finished in 30 minutes or so, with more time left over than I’d thought.)
At the risk of being lynched, though, in a way I’ll miss being wrapped up in this project. Looking back, it seems a lot more fun than it did two days ago!
The weekend before, I’d polished and reviewed all our materials again and again: Powerpoint presentation, trifold poster, additional materials on the Ipads, business cards, system diagrams… I also stopped by House & Earth and Clement Moore stores to pick up samples of some of our green materials. Control freak that I am, I had to personally check that everything was absolutely perfect.
My specific responsibilities were the systems diagrams and budget, which I printed out for our trifold; I also finished and formatted the Powerpoint slides on green materials that Karrie had begun, making sure all aspects of our proposal (screenshots of Libertad’s Sketchup, for instance) were included. I printed out these slides to glue in a tile format on our poster.
For our oral presentation, our group wrote and color-coded our entire speech on a Google-doc. We each timed sections of our speech, wrote in transitions, and used the Comments feature to highlight parts of each other’s presentations that we thought judges might have questions about. (Of course, our predictions didn’t cover everything…) Once this was finished, I wrote my speech bullet-point-style on notecards and practiced in front of my group and my parents. I think this repeated practice well in advance really helped me to focus and speak smoothly and naturally. I did have trouble writing my speech to fit my seven minute time constraint, though – there was so much I could say!
The morning of the presentation, after running around the school getting our iPads, projector, and other equipment, I was a lot less anxious than I thought I would be. Seeing our whole group together (Rose had been sick the day before), with our polished presentation, poster, model, samples, and everything else calmed me down. I knew that we had a great project – all we had to do was convey that the judges, just like we’d practiced. The same is true of any presentation, whether it counts for a homework grade or a final exam.
Of course, I hadn’t counted on Ms. Jo smiling in the back, filming our entire presentation; that was a nice surprise on presentation day…
My oral presentation went almost as smoothly as I’d practiced, aside from a couple stumbles and slide-flipping mistakes. I feel really confident about our oral skills and the professionalism of our presentation, as well as most of the budget and renovation choices we made and how we justified them. I’m most worried about all the questions the judges brought up about our water system, as well as climate across the US. But I’m confident that we fielded those well.
The Trendy Trailers logo is visible on all our presentation materials.
All in all, I’m proud of my group’s presentation and all our hard work. Another huge thank-you to our judges, donors, mentors, and our amazing Ms. Jo!
Trendy Trailers Inc.
Pictures courtesy of Annalise Irby and Libertad Escobar.