The Anatomy of a Reflection

Ava Strauss

Ava Strauss is a 4th grade student at Aveson School of Leaders where she has been a student since kindergarten. Ava’s passions include writing, swimming, performing aerial silks acrobatics and cheerleading for the Pasadena Trojans.

Originally posted on RelevantED and reprinted with permission.

Reflection is an integral part of Personalized Mastery Learning. In this reflection by Aveson 4th grader, Ava Strauss, we see a deep dive into the student’s understanding of her learning, her challenges and how to improve the skills necessary to impact her academic performance. The reflection moves beyond what she likes and enjoys to demonstrating a richer meaning garnered from her experiences.

This project was so fun and such an amazing experience. One thing that I thought was the easiest was picking out images for my tri-fold board to make it stand out from some of the other boards because I already had started looking at images even before we started researching. I knew what I wanted and what needed to be on my board. And especially because even just outside of school I’m very interested in fashion. One thing I definitely learned about fashion in the 1960s is that I would never wear any clothes from that decade. It’s embarrassing, at least to me.

Grit and persistence

I think the most challenging part of this project was doing the researching because the internet was really bad, unfortunately. So that slowed me down a lot. But, I wouldn’t let it get in my way so I just had to tolerate it and keep pushing myself and find other resources.

If I could do one thing differently, it would be to make the font size on my driving question bigger. That way it would pop more versus it just being really small – although on the top of my project it says 1960s loud and clear. But even though it was a little small, I still think I did a good job.

Defend learning

How did I do hitting my deadlines? Well, I think I did a good job hitting deadlines because I finished my tri-fold first out of anyone in my class, so I’m very confident on my deadlines. The outcome I felt that I showed the best proficiency in was “I can use technology as a tool.” The reason I believe I showed proficiency is because I found all my answers to my essential questions (EQs) in a reasonable amount of time and got my answers typed quickly. Because for one, I worked alone which always helps because there are very few distractions to get me off my focus.

Reflect on content and implication of what was learned

Why does my work matter? My work matters because many of the things I included in my project are a very very important part of history to America and the world. The 1960s impacted the present. Out of all the major events I think that Martin Luther King Jr. made the biggest difference in the 1960s with the “I have a Dream” speech in 1963. Can you imagine what the country would be like if he hadn’t made that speech? It would be very very different.

Reflect on own learning and the evolution of her learning

One thing I learned about myself from this project is that I work very successfully by myself because there are very few distractions that will keep me from getting my work done. Another thing I learned is that I push myself way more than I need to and sometimes it can stress me out which can come back to bite me in the butt.

Confidence gained and skills learned

I loved this project and I’m hoping to learn more very soon. I will most definitely do this again possibly on a new decade. I’m thinking about doing the 1940s to challenge myself more because this time I think the 1960s was a little too easy for me. I really want to challenge myself and maybe I’ll really try to challenge myself by working with my brother – which is probably never going to happen but I’m thinking about it. This was the best experience for me so far this year. I feel I did an amazing job!


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