A Thirst To Spend My Fire and Restless Force Tracking My True, Original Course

But often, in the world's most crowded streets,
But often, in the din of strife,
There rises an unspeakable desire
After the knowledge of our buried life;
A thirst to spend our fire and restless force
In tracking out our true, original course;

- Matthew Arnold
The Buried Life


The Class Assignment

I created this research assignment for my Honors students this semester, based on the tv show The Buried Life. I showed them an episode and then we talked about the amount of research it takes to get stuff done. This was also great for them to see what "research" in the real world looks like. It is sometimes looking stuff up online, but it is combined with a lot of phone calls and talking to people as well.

Then they made their own lists and spent the rest of the semester (on their own- we did other stuff in class) trying to cross at least one thing off.  We ended the year with their presentations of what they did. 

It was amazing. 

Kimmy, Sergio, and Brooke conquered their fear of heights and rode roller coasters for the first time.  (This is pee-in-your-pants-laughing-so-hard kind of funny).  You can tell from the video how much this was genuinely scary for her... but she did it anyway. 

A bunch of students wanted to go skydiving. Not only do most skydiving places require that you be over 18, their parents pretty much all said no, but they tried the alternative... indoor skydiving.

Natalie learned to knit. I am impressed... I certainly couldn't learn to knit, especially as well as she did, and knit a whole scarf in just 8 weeks.

Janelli, Hugo, and Carlos learned to rock climb... and really conquered nature.   I got to go with them for this one, and it was a super fun adventure.  

Jackie and Alejandra had never been to a concert before, so they went to their first concert. Their enthusiasm is contagious. I am totally not into banda, but their excitement during their presentation got me excited. 

Stephanie attempted to bake something from scratch for the first time and had, in her words, "an epic failure"... but she kept at it, and ultimately baked cupcakes that she brought in for the class. They were very, very tasty. Next, she just has to conquer homemade frosting.

Desiree learned how to drive, Jessica and Carol saw Disneyland's "World of Color," Adriana went bungee jumping, and Adahli wrapped a snake around her neck. Gloria, Yanella, and Eric were not able to accomplish their chosen tasks, but they sure made an awesome effort, and clearly learned something. Despite Eric's odd video about duct taping his hands to his bike, I think Eric will manage to swim with the sharks some time this next year, and Gloria will be able to volunteer at an animal shelter later this summer. Yanella is determined to go skydiving, and will probably get there sooner rather than later. 

Overall, I learned a lot from them. I love watching them shoot for the stars and learning the importance of networking and not giving up on the first shot. Reading their stories was a wonderful experience, and their lists inspired me to add to mine. It was fun reading their lists and seeing how many things on them I had already done. They have a fun 10 years ahead of them.

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