Wheatley’s Midterm Experience Connects Classroom to Career! (Part 2)

Wheatley’s Midterm Experience is designed to give our 9th and 10th grade students hands-on workshops to provide insight into ways in which reading, writing, and speaking skills can be used in the world beyond Wheatley. Over the course of two hours on Monday, 22 January, students worked with acclaimed authors, poets, comedians and creative artists in activities designed to engage students in a way that can be challenging during the regular school day. You can view a previous post here: Wheatley’s Midterm Experience Connects Classroom to Career! (Part 1)

The Midterm Experience occurs thanks to the dedication of our Secondary English Chair, Mr. Steve Collier, our extraordinary librarian, Mrs. JoBeth Roberts, and our dedicated English teachers.

Some of the workshops given include:

Celebrity Interviewing
Jen Calonita (author, I’m With the BandFlunkedSecrets of My Hollywood Life, Belles)

This workshop was designed for students who dream of someday having a job where they can talk and write about Hollywood all day long — that’s right…an entertainment journalist! In this class, students worked with former entertainment magazine editor and young adult book author Jen Calonita to learn what it takes to conduct a celebrity interview from research to a published article. By the end of the first hour of the workshop, students were ready to conduct (via FaceTime) an actual celebrity interview! The hour-long interview was conducted with musician Andrew Taggert (of The Chainsmokers fame).

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Inspiration for Crafting Songs
David Diamond (singer/songwriter, drummer/guitarist)

What comes first: the groove, melody, chords or the lyrics? What kind of mood you may be in? David Diamond led a discussion about what can inspire one to create a song; how there is no one way to begin the writing process. Sometimes a catchphrase can become a chorus, or a rhythmic pulse of a train can help create a groove to lay a foundation to create. What does a song make you feel? Students explored how certain styles of music can create different moods and transport the listener. Students created lyrics or rhythms of their own to help craft their own song.

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