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School is out for the summer and that means kids will be having fun with friends, staying up late, sleeping in, taking trips and often enjoying a fun but different diet. On this episode of the Supercast, we sit down with members of the Jordan School District Health and Wellness team to find out how we can keep kids on track – by following a few health and wellness tips for a happier summer with family and friends.


Audio Transcription

Anthony Godfrey:
Hello and welcome to the Supercast. I'm your host, Superintendent Anthony Godfrey. School is out for the summer, and that means kids will be having fun with friends, staying up late, sleeping in taking trips and often enjoying some fun foods and a different diet. On this episode of the super cast, we sit down with members of the Jordan school district health and wellness team to find out how we can keep kids on track by following a few health and wellness tips for a happier summer with family and Friends.

Anthony Godfrey:
We're back in our little studio here in Jordan school, district offices. We haven't been here since the start of the pandemic and it feels really good to be here. What better way to kick things off than to talk with McKinley Withers and Rachel Dangerfield from our wellness team and it's summer, we made it to summer 2021, which is very exciting. I recently read an article about the, a bird called the swift and a swift. They now have the technology where they can put a little camera and a little altimeter on the bird and they can tell kind of the flight patterns and the swift flies for 10 months without landing 10 straight months without landing. And I think we all feel a little bit like a swift right now. We haven't landed for a long time, so it's good to finally have a summer where we can land and take a little bit of a breather.

Anthony Godfrey:
There is summer school going on, but hopefully everyone can get a little bit of a break. So we're here to talk with McKinley and Rachel about maybe how to get the best break possible over the summer. How to really be focused on social, emotional wellness. I think there's going to be a level of freedom that students are experiencing that maybe we haven't had before with the transmission lower in the county than it's been for a very long time with the mask requirement lifted and with some opportunity to socialize now returning. So let's talk about some of those tips for social emotional wellness. You always give us great advice. It's great to have you both here.

Speaker 3:
Well, we are so grateful to be here and as fellow Swifts making our way through this. So we are just so thrilled to be here and grateful for the chance that we have to connect with you and, and reconnect with the parents that are out there. And one of the things that we've been talking about in our work with students and fellow educators in the wake of this pandemic as Swifts who have just been kind of surviving and hanging on just making it through, we want to be very thoughtful about approaching changes with the mindset of working on gains and not recognizing gaps. So what, what I mean by that is the little victories are actually really big. We want to just make small bits of progress rather than acknowledge what big differences or gaps may exist because of this altered lifestyle. And

Anthony Godfrey:
They certainly do exist. They do, but we tend to focus too much on the losses and not enough on the gains. Yeah. Yes.

Speaker 3:
Yeah. And so what that looks like when we're, when we're trying to identify, you know, some, some small opportunities for gains, rather than gaps, there are a lot of strategies we can kind of talk through and hit. But the biggest one is continued practice of gratitude. So it's okay to acknowledge that times are hard and to get through the difficult times and see those, those difficult, difficult struggles, but it's also okay to recognize and acknowledge the things that are going well or have gone well and creating a practice around,

Anthony Godfrey:
I think when you're talking about in gains, not gaps, give me an example of that.

Speaker 3:
Okay. So let's assume maybe your child is feeling like they haven't had a lot of time with friends over the last 10 months. Maybe some social situations might there may be some gaps in their experience or their practice with being with friends, talking with friends reaching out to friends. And so there may be some social gaps, but what would be focusing on gains would be, well, what could we do today? That's very small. So let's just text a friend let's focus on reaching out or that's a gain, right? It might not feel like it meets the whole gap, but that's a gain. It's something you can do. It's something that feels manageable. If it's something that feels possible and enough, small gains over time can meet those gaps, but we don't want to feel overwhelmed by what isn't there. Rather. What could we do? What's our next smallest that

Anthony Godfrey:
It's always difficult though, because one of the last things a child wants to hear is why don't you call a friend, call Tommy, he'll come, you know, it's encouraging the social aspect. Sometimes doesn't sound very fun from a parent, but you're right. A little bit, a little gain is, is yeah.

Speaker 3:
And, and acknowledging and appreciating the little gains rather than seeing the whole gap. So celebrating if, if there's a text back, yeah. Maybe the friend didn't come over, but that's exciting. Right. And, and the more we can appreciate, rather than say the next step I like to use, what's the next smallest step, because it, it feels much more manageable.

Anthony Godfrey:
What are some other strategies kids can use to make the most of summer?

Speaker 3:
So along the same lines, and it's still kind of under the, the mindset of gains rather than gaps is trying a streak. So a streak

Anthony Godfrey:
Now trying a streak may not be exactly what leaps to mind yet when people hear that term, tell us about what that means.

Speaker 3:
So what it means is you try and maintain a behavior for your, your streak is however many days you do that one thing. So a good streak for healthy eating would be

Anthony Godfrey:
Four hours there. I went without eating Funyuns. And that is a strange,

Speaker 3:
I guess, if you're counting your streak as every hour, that would be a streak. But if you are just focused on what's your next smallest step, a streak for healthy eating would be, I'm going to see how many days in a row I can eat a vegetable. So, and just, just see how many days you can accumulate of having a vegetable, which for many people that would be a positive change. And rather than shift to some big diet that you give up on, or don't actually enjoy, just try a streak. What's a small behavior that you're up for today. That you'll be up for again tomorrow. So a vegetable every day, see how long your street goes, or if it's exercise or movement, see how many days you can get your set of really minimal, you know, amount of movement, your 15 minutes of walking in the sunshine, how many days in a row can you maintain that? And maybe we could have, you know, many students who have maintained a couple of streaks throughout the summer. And I think you would, you start to see the benefits accumulate over time.

Anthony Godfrey:
I did read a long time ago about an older gentleman who had been physically fit his whole life. Very strong. Maybe you've heard this done pushups. And he said, somebody asked him, what's the secret to doing so many pushups and staying so fit. And he said doing one push-up every day, because once you've done the one you started, there's the momentum. And I may as well do a couple more and I may as well keep going. And so the cumulative effect of just sending the goal of doing one pushup every day, gave him the start. He needed to really be on a path toward physical fitness.

Speaker 3:
That's a perfect example. You know, when we think about students readjusting or adjusting to, or creating a lifestyle post pandemic, those that one, push-up a day, that one vegetable a day, that five minute thing that you're doing, those are the things that add up over time. And that's how human behavior gets. It improves

Anthony Godfrey:
They with us. When we come back more tips on health and wellness during the hectic summer,

Speaker 4:
Do you simply love learning online? We can't wait to have you join the amazing teachers in our brand new Jordan, virtual learning academy in Jordan virtual learning academy schools, we offer innovative, fun and flexible online learning with daily real-time instruction from teachers. Enrollment is currently open for all K through 12 students in Utah, start on the path to personalized virtual learning success. Now I connect dot Jordan, district.org. That's connect got Jordan district.org,

Anthony Godfrey:
Rachel order, some ideas for making the most of the day by by structuring it somewhat.

Speaker 4:
Yeah. So it's funny. Cause I've heard parents say, well, my kid thrives better without a routine. And what's funny about that to me is we know that's actually not true. Like kids do well in school because they have routines and they know what to expect, right. Especially our anxious kids when they start worrying about what's going to happen today. That's when we see them start to fall apart. So obviously your whole summer doesn't have to be structured for some of you. It may be, but just routines of like what time you're going to bed, what time you're waking up routines with brushing your teeth, taking showers, things like that, that we need to do every day. And then

Anthony Godfrey:
That's one to be doing that every day. I hope so. Yeah. That I have down, I'm on a really good streak for showering and brushing my teeth that are working. It is true that my, with my son showering every day is not a given. If there's a reminder there, especially in the summer, it feels like vacation when you're not showering. Yeah. Well,

Speaker 4:
And to that one thing that a strategy parents can use that works really well, especially with like elementary aged kids is like a visual schedule, right. Especially for our friends that like to, I like to do lists and so do our, our students and our kids. So when they can check it off and go on a streak was showering. It all just, it just ends up really well.

Anthony Godfrey:
Yeah. I do agree that a visual representation or chart can really make sure that kids follow through on those routines. And like you said, it doesn't have to be completely structured the summer probably ought to be a good blend of the two. You get those structured things done. And then you have some, some free time and you're able to do the things that you want to do, connect with friends and, and do the other things that you would choose for yourself.

Speaker 3:
And I would add to that. It, it's probably a good idea to add to your routines, some very small strategies for social or emotional wellness. Here's an example. So like we were just saying who texting or reaching out to a friend every day, just it and not even being too concerned about what the response is, but helping our child practice the skill of reaching out, practicing, building friendships. There's one routine that you could do every day. And then the emotional wellness component of that, that you could add to your routine would be something as simple as as a gratitude practice. So that could be at dinner time. Everyone says the one positive thing that happened to that day or a journal where they write three, three things that they're grateful for from that day or talking to just sharing or writing down the, the

Anthony Godfrey:
Social aspect. I really liked the idea of reaching out to a friend and not being so hung up on what the response is. So many kids and my kids are no exception over the years have just thought, well, nobody's asked me they're over there playing basketball. And nobody asked me to play, join in. How about you're the one who starts getting everyone together to play basketball or whatever it may be. And so initiating that social interaction is something that sometimes kids expect others to do for them, but they don't take the thought to initiate that themselves. Right. How do we prepare for the beginning of the school year? There may be some anxiety about returning to school. School is going to be very different from what it has been for the last year and a half. And many students may be returning from virtual learning into school and they haven't been in school for a year and a half. What are some of the things that you have found have been successful in the past when someone is anticipating something like that, that's creating anxiety for them.

Speaker 4:
So I've had students tour the school and visit the school. So, and all across all ages. So elementary, they can meet the teacher beforehand. They can practice walking to their classroom. They can go play on the playground and start to sort of get used to that environment in secondary. We've also set up tours, special tours. Cause a lot of times, you know, the ninth graders will go toward the 10th or the high school or whatever, but they can go again. And the schools are really, really awesome at working with these kids and they can go meet all of their teachers. They can go practice, opening their locker when there's not the pressure of all the kids around and the Bell's about to ring. So that's one strategy that I've seen work really well,

Anthony Godfrey:
Which fits in with the idea of taking on that anxiety a little bit at a time, getting a little bit of exposure stopping by the school. I love the idea of walking through your schedule or walking through the school, playing on the playground depending on your age. And then it starts to become a little more familiar and something that maybe you can picture a little bit more being at that school. And also, you know, there's of course every year there are those students who are going from ninth grade to 10th grade moving into the high school, sixth to seventh. Those are always times of anxiety for all of us where we're nervous about this big shift. There's a, there's a change in, in friend groups. So I like the idea of kind of dipping your toe in the water. Also counselors are there for a good portion of the summer off and on administrators are there and then teachers are there a week before school starts essentially. So there are some opportunities to become familiar. And the locker, I remember the locker is, is such a, I don't know why they have to be so difficult, you know, right left. Right. And you pass it the first two times, but you don't the third time, I don't know who came up with that many years ago, but it's been vexing twelve-year-olds ever since. But th those are some really good ideas to try to just get accustomed to the idea of being back in school after having a what's is hopefully a really restful.

Speaker 3:
And along with that still continuing to normalize the experience. You know, it a lot of kids may be nervous too. There's a lot of kids are also learning how to use their locker. But if, if I was asking you superintendent twice a day, every day, all summer, are you sure you're going to be okay? Are you, are you nervous? Are you are you feeling a little bit nervous about this school year? I mean, it is so different, right? How would that make you feel over the course of the summer? What

Anthony Godfrey:
Do you think? Like I was maybe supposed to be

Speaker 3:
Nervous like you were supposed to be here. Yeah. So along with that, I think it's important that we acknowledge the feelings we accommodate and we're, we allow for children to experience anxiety, but we don't have to cue them for it constantly. Yeah, it may be a little different, but they've done school for a lot of years and they've adapted and they will adapt. They'll get used to it. So allowing for those small victories, those gains, but also, you know, not cuing them to have a bad experience.

Anthony Godfrey:
That that's a great thing to keep in mind. It's always a balance acknowledging feelings, but not emphasizing those in queuing. That's really the word for it. It's queuing. Well, schools are going to be very accommodating if there's any way that we can help over the summer and answer questions. It may be difficult to reach people on certain days, but I would just encourage anyone listening to keep trying, and you can make that connection. One

Speaker 3:
Thing that we kind of just always remind people is that it's, it's also okay to not be okay if, if you're at this point where you know, that getting some additional help would be good. Getting help is the only way to get better in a lot of situations. And so the 24 hour crisis lines are available all summer long. There's the Huntsman mental health Institute crisis line 8 0 1 5 8 7 3000. You can use the safe UT app all summer to do a chat or a call with crisis workers. And there's also a new resource for families called the stabilization and mobile response team. They will go to homes to support with behavioral or substance use issues in the home, or there's a whole variety of issues that they are ready and equipped to support families, and they will do it at your home. So that number is 1 8, 3, 3 safe fam which is also a good resource just to be aware of

Anthony Godfrey:
Some great resources for the summer. Rachel, any parting words.

Speaker 4:
I hope everyone has a great summer and I hope they land comfortably. Yeah. Yes.

Anthony Godfrey:
After our long swift flight. Thanks. Thanks to both of you for joining us and for everything you do to help keep us, keep us well.

Speaker 3:
Yeah. Thank you. Thanks for having us. It's been fun. [inaudible]

Anthony Godfrey:
Thanks for joining us on the super CAS. Remember education is the most important thing you'll do today. We'll see you out there. [inaudible].

Show Audio Transcription

It is with great pride that we honor and congratulate the Jordan School District Class of 2021. The graduates have demonstrated strength and perseverance in what has been a challenging and unprecedented year.

On this episode of the Supercast, we hear from some members of the Class of 2021 who truly are an inspiration to all.


Audio Transcription

Anthony Godfrey:
Hello and welcome to the Supercast. I'm your host, Superintendent Anthony Godfrey. I'm very proud to honor and congratulate the Jordan school district class of 2021. The graduates have demonstrated strength and perseverance in what has been a challenging and unprecedented year. On this episode of the super cast we hear from some members of the class of 2021, who truly are an inspiration to all near west Jordan high school with Eliani and she's speaking at graduation. And I would love to hear some of your speech. Now I have to say I was in the office and someone said you have to meet Allie. So I've already spoken with you a little bit about everything that's going on with you. You have some exciting things happening in association with graduation. Yeah. A lot

Speaker 3:
Of awards that I'm going to be winning soon. Well, I have one, but my biggest award would be speaking at graduation. So, so speaking

Anthony Godfrey:
At graduation is your biggest award. That's pretty cool.

Speaker 3:
My biggest accomplishment that I've ever done

Anthony Godfrey:
Well, it's an exciting day. And like I told you the other day, I'm excited to be there. I get to speak with you, but mine is going to be, mine's going to be pretty short and a lot less interesting than yours that's for sure. Let's hear,

Speaker 3:
Let's hear part of it. Being a teenager has its challenges such as controlling emotions and impulses. But with these challenges come great rewards like having big dreams you can make and your own independent positions tomorrow, we wake up as adults and it's your choice to do what's best adult adulthood is a world of responsibility and work transforming from a teenager to an adult. Might be challenging if you are here graduating today, I know you could make it in the future.

Anthony Godfrey:
I love that last line. If you're here, graduating today, I know you can make it in the future. You've come this far so you can keep going. What does it mean for you to keep going? What's next for you?

Speaker 3:
Well, for me, I want to continue my education and pursue an associate's degree in graphic design. I feel like a lot of people doubt themselves in the beginning and say, Hey, I can't do this. I know I can't like during the beginning of the school year, we were struggling to keep things going like online. And in-person a lot of kids struggle with that and they are here graduating in a couple of days. I know that they can make it in the future. Cause they've been going through all that beforehand.

Anthony Godfrey:
What would you say to students who are worried about whether they're going to graduate next year or worried about starting high school next year? What would you say to them?

Speaker 3:
Something I would say is that it might be challenging at first, but even if I did it with having a disability, you can do it as well. And honestly just have fun. Don't take it seriously. I mean, take your grades seriously, of course, but live life a little, like I would say, like go to dances now that like the pandemics kinda over go to dances, hanging out with your friends late at night, just get a boyfriend, you know, honestly just live life. High school is serious at times, but honestly you need to live life. Yeah. Just live life. I think

Anthony Godfrey:
You're right. There are achievements in a high school and then there are achievements in high school and you want to make sure that you're having a good blend of, of hard work and good fun. Yes. It's a pleasure meeting you again. I can't wait to share a stage with you and I can't wait to see where you go from here. You have great things ahead of you. Thank you.

Speaker 3:
I like to tell you my story. It all started my first year of my high school. It wasn't the place for me. I felt many classes got into bad friend groups that pressured me into doing things that were detrimental to my health and wellbeing. It felt like everyone gave up on me and I was giving up on myself. My life was on track to get me where I wanted to be ever since I came to valley, my whole world changed for the better I've made so many awesome friends and my grades improved immensely, the positive atmosphere at valley and the unconditional love and support from the faculty and staff helped me achieve my goals. Malaria once said it is not only what we do, but also what we do not do for which we are accountable. That valley teachers focus on putting the accountability in the student's hands, which helped me have confidence in making decisions about my future.

Anthony Godfrey:
I'm speaking now with Rebecca Kelly, who's speaking at valley high school's graduation. Rebecca, tell me valley high school. It sounds like was exactly the right school for you.

Speaker 3:
It definitely was. Like I said, in my speech, I failed many classes and I've gone to bed friend groups. Hm. Yeah, it just, it wasn't the place for me and I didn't fit in. I always sat in the back with no one and I didn't really have any many friends. But ever since I went to valley there, my whole thing changed, like I'm captain of the year book and like chief editor of the, and that's helped me get outside of my comfort zone a little bit. And like I've made so many more friends and so, yeah,

Anthony Godfrey:
You're not. Can I hear that? You're both captain and chief. Yes. That's pretty exciting. Tell me about some of the students and teachers you met at valley that made a difference in your life.

Speaker 3:
I don't know. They always tell me like, like keep on working hard and link. You'll achieve a lot of things. And I've never really been told that before my, in my life. So hearing that from someone, but hearing it over and over again, it made me feel like it more than I was going to achieve a lot of things.

Anthony Godfrey:
I think overcoming the challenges that you have and now not just graduating from valley, but speaking at valley high. How does that feel right now in this moment?

Speaker 3:
I'm freaking out a little bit. I got, tell me tickles already.

Anthony Godfrey:
They tell me tickles can be a good thing. And I think these are good tummy tickles telling you that great things are happening for you. Yes. So the class of 2021 at valley high school, how would you like them to be remembered?

Speaker 3:
Just like how far they've come and how much they've accomplished over the, this passion and a half. And like, not even like, not just that through the COVID year, but before that too, with their struggles in their lives and that they've overcome so many great things and that they were going to be doing great in the future.

Anthony Godfrey:
Do you have any words of encouragement for those who may be listening and might be struggling with fitting in at school or accomplishing what they want to?

Speaker 3:
I always kept on telling myself, like, don't be afraid to be you. I always was not myself trying to just fit in, but me being me, it helped me grow.

Anthony Godfrey:
So great advice that you can use the rest of your life. Great things are ahead. Thank you for talking with me. We're here. Mountain Ridge high school, talking with Alexander Hill about speaking at graduation, Alexander, let's hear some of your speech. Now. We only have two subjects to speak on reflection and relationships. We've all been traveling a similar path, but whereabouts to split 570 different ways before that happens. Take a moment to reflect on what you have learned here at mountain Ridge high school. I for one have learned from Mr. Arthur, that the solution is far less important than the process for Mrs. Robertson, that everything in life has a deeper meaning. If we can just find it from Ms. Porter, that we should each add to the tool belt, trying new things that improve our lives. And for Ms. Barrett, that when we are learning history, we are only learning about ourself and that's just the beginning each and every teacher has made an impact on our lives that perhaps will never be fully recognized.

Anthony Godfrey:
What have you learned here? What principles will you take with you throughout the rest of your life? Now second relationships, not the lovey w cause I'm not too good at those, but the relationships with your friends and family board instruct one day. So I stopped by the cemetery and took a look around at the rows of graves. I noticed that not one headstone had engraved here lies an honor, roll recipient, 13 consecutive times. There's not a single one that mentioned if they were student body officers or club presidents, their AP test scores or 1600 meter time. No, rather those headstones are all about relationships, about friends and family and the love that connects them about the love that those people gave and the love that those people receive as we navigate the next parts of our lives. Remember, it's all about the relationships we have. How does it feel to be at this point? I never thought I'd get here. See my siblings get here, seen my friends get here, but here we are. And

Speaker 3:
I always a little scary, always feels like it happens

Anthony Godfrey:
To somebody else, right? Yeah. It's usually a little scary, but mostly excitement to just go to the next chapter of our lives. And what does that next chapter for you? For me, it's a little bit of everything. So I'm at UVU right now, and then I'm going to military training starting in let's see, starting September, I'll be for nine months. And then I'm going on a two-year church mission. Talk about elementary and middle school. Tell me a favorite memory from elementary or middle school that prepared you as well, because it's a 13 year process really to get you to graduation. That's true. I think heart. Yeah. So I went to both daybreak elementary and Butterfield canyon. And I felt great memories of both, but I remember Ms. Nixon, my teacher in daybreak, who's now a principal at Hermann elementary.

Anthony Godfrey:
We played kick the trashcan and we would go out on the field and play that each day. And it was a hardcore intense game and there was sometimes be hard feelings, but we, that was a highlight of my fifth grade experience and I got pretty good. So, well, I run into Ms. Nixon now, and then, so I'm going to have to talk with her about your kick, the trashcan skills. It's funny, the things that stick and the experiences that stay with us. What advice do you have for anyone who may be starting high school and maybe he's a little nervous about that or is a junior concerned about graduation or graduating with the grades they'd like to see next year? Yeah, I think the biggest thing is get involved. You can focus all day on your grades but you will walk out of high school with you might have the great grades, but you won't walk out with the soft skills that you need to be a successful person.

Anthony Godfrey:
And a lot of the soft skills I've gained have been through the different parts of been involved with choir and with DECA FPLA and with like service and, you know, I'm serving on the youth council and everything. So we get as involved as possible. Get as involved as you possibly can. You'll meet new people and you'll gain new skills. It'll take your life far. Well, thanks a lot for taking the time. I know it's a busy, exciting week and I wish you the best going forward. Thank you. Appreciate it.

Speaker 3:
Do you simply love learning online? We can't wait to have you join the amazing teachers in our brand new Jordan virtual learning academy in Jordan virtual learning academy schools, we offer innovative and flexible online learning with daily real-time instruction from teachers. Enrollment is currently open for all K through 12 students in Utah. Start on the path to personalized virtual learning success. Now I connect.jordan.org. That's connect dot Jordan district.org.

Anthony Godfrey:
I'm in the alumni room at Bingham high school with Jackson Wheeler Jackson. How does it feel to be graduating? It's it's kind of surreal. And I say, like I was saying earlier, I first started my freshman year here and we came in and we celebrated a state championship that we had won. And now I'm a senior and I'm graduating at this crazy. I'm starting at the same way. I'm ended it. The time goes by quickly. The days go by slowly, sometimes the nights when you're up late doing homework and having a good time with friends and all of that. But it's a big milestone. How does it feel? Looking back? It's hard to put into words exactly what it means is as far as this big milestone, because you know, it was, it's the epitome of high school, right?

Anthony Godfrey:
Every student looks forward to the day they graduate and now it's here. And the culmination of, of these last four years, well, not even four years said the last 13 years of work, right. You've been working since you first started school and you know, here you are, and we're, we're celebrating your education. It's I it's more than anything I could describe and, you know, being fortunate enough to speak. I think just being able to embody being on high school students, you know, I'm very grateful and very fortunate to have that opportunity. How would you like the class of 2021 at Bingham high school to be remembered this specific class? I want to be remembered in a way that's different than any other high school class has been remembered, not just in the sense of we're graduating and we're, you know, we're different. The time has changed, right?

Anthony Godfrey:
We live in a different world, different technology, but the things that we went through and as far as being in school, right, and establishing ourself and who we are, and, you know, I focus a lot on tradition, especially cause the school is built on tradition. It's very historic. And then coming in a year later and having everything taken away and trying to figure out who we were right in between identifying who we are to having COVID hit us the way that it did and being them students specifically our class, because, you know, we had come in, everything was taken away and we had to relearn who we were, right. Were individuals that persist and no matter what we're going to adapt. Right. And that's what makes miners successful is we're going to get the job done regardless of the circumstances or whatever.

Anthony Godfrey:
I like the idea of relearning, who you were, but at the same time growing and becoming even more. And that's really what we hope that your educational experience, like you said, all 13 years are all about. I'd love to hear part of it, of your speech. Absolutely. So the part that, you know, I thought about reading to you is, is the conclusion of my speech and the entirety of my speech. I kind of wrote down as a metaphor of a pencil. So the whole speech encompasses high school as a pencil. And there's different, you know, references and in jokes in here and there that you know, help capture what I felt high school really was. So I'll read this last part here. This is the beginning of the conclusion, and I'll go with this sitting here in this final moment, we will end our chapter is changed characters better because of the tools that we were equipped with Henri Bergson once said to exist is to change to change is to mature, to mature is to go on creating oneself endlessly.

Anthony Godfrey:
But before we jump into the journey ahead of us, we have to take time to reflect on this moment. Right now we are minors through and through for the rest of our lives. A part of our hearts will always bleed blue. Although this chapter for the senior class of 2021 is closing, we will never outlook the knowledge we can gain from a pencil. First, everything you do will leave a mark, whether for good or bad, however, you always hold the ability to correct your mistakes. As you erase yellow paint and a Pristina racer only goes so far. It's what's on the inside. That counts life will throw challenges at you, but the best pencils go through the most painful sharpenings lastly, to be the very best you can be, allow yourself to be guided by the hands that hold you. All you have to do to infinitely impact your future is pick up the pencil and when life feels Dolan pointless, just remember sharpen your pencil. Thank you. Thanks for taking the time to talk with me. Absolutely. No, thank you. I'm grateful for this opportunity to be here, to embody what the inside 2021 class represents

Speaker 3:
At the beginning of senior year. Coming back to school was strange. The lack of closure from the year prior echoed in our footsteps, but disappointment and absence of motivation was palpable throughout the last two years. Our classes navigated the waters that no class has had to endure before from trying to meet new people through a mask to orange chicken, Thursday being the weekly highlight events have definitely been unknown. We trudged on finding ourselves here today, our senior year, while different remained intact, we cheer as loud as we could throw our masks. During the first football game in the nation, we celebrated homecoming with a concert on our football field and watched our own students kill it. On that stage, we raised $50,640 to take care of children with rare diseases. During hearts of gold, we took home the coveted spiritual trophy, all thanks to one of our own students, incredible dance moves. These memories will become the stories that we tell our kids and grandkids and who have we become. I figured that no one could explain this better than you incredible Mustang, student body

Anthony Godfrey:
With Clara Fowler from Herriman high school. You're speaking at graduation. How does that feel?

Speaker 3:
It's a little nerve wracking, but it's exciting. I actually really liked public speaking. So I think it will be a really fun opportunity.

Anthony Godfrey:
What's it been like to be senior class president during a COVID year?

Speaker 3:
It's definitely been a challenge. I've really had to focus on unifying my class and on trying to find little pockets of hope almost throughout the year. Like we've had to change our homecoming. We had a homecoming concert instead of a homecoming dance, and that was a different and fun tradition that we were able to introduce. But I think overall, it's definitely been trying to keep morale up, try to find ways to keep kids involved and in touch with what's happening at school,

Anthony Godfrey:
From your speech. I can tell. And I've known throughout the year that you've accomplished a lot as a student body, despite the pandemic. How would you like the class of 2021 at Herriman high school?

Speaker 3:
I think I'd like our class to be remembered as being the class that overcame this pandemic. And I think that our class graduating signifies the resilience and the strength that we've developed throughout this pandemic and throughout quarantine, we've had to overcome a lot of challenges from emotional challenges to figuring out how to graduate a midst, a it's people dying in a miss people that we love going through a lot of difficulty. And I think it really highlights the, like I said before resilience and strength of our class.

Anthony Godfrey:
Thanks for talking with us. Thanks for having me good luck with whatever is next for you. I'm sure it's big things. I'm excited. It feels big right now. Doesn't it? It does looming.

Speaker 1:
[Inaudible]

Anthony Godfrey:
We're here at Riverton high school with Isabel Emory. Let's start with hearing some of your graduations.

Speaker 3:
Okay. I, the title of my speeches, planning spontaneity, but you spontaneous this piece of advice has always gone over my head a bit. So what exactly does it mean to be spontaneous, to be spontaneous, to act on instincts, which are not controlled by outside forces? To me, this means do not plan or at the very least try not to plan so much. This is another hard idea for me to grasp because it seems like nothing will go right. If I do not plan everything, but I have found through experience. If we avoid over-planning, we aren't disappointed when something goes wrong, but instead enjoy the accidents that come. This leads us to a better place than we previously planned. President Dwight D Eisenhower. The 34th president of the United States said plans are worthless. Planning is everything. To me. Eisenhower is saying it is important to think about the journey we want to take so we can plan ahead, but we don't want to make firm plans because we will always have to deviate from what we originally thought

Anthony Godfrey:
That speech was outstanding. And it really, it speaks, I'm sure to all of the seniors who are graduating, because there's so much that they're expected to plan. And I think knowing what you want to do and knowing what your path is, is great, but it's also great to be, as you say, spontaneous, and be open to ideas that come your way. Lots of my days are planned. My days are planned down to the 15 minute mark, but it's great when I get a spontaneous moment in there. So I think you've really hit on something. How does it feel to be graduating right now?

Speaker 3:
I've never liked growing up. So it's been kind of hard to accept graduating. And I also feel like it's been a bit harder cause I didn't get a full three years at the school and I didn't get to experience everything that usually happens, but I did get to experience some things that were different than maybe some other seniors have in the past, which I think is cool.

Anthony Godfrey:
What are some of your favorite memories let's say from elementary or middle school, because it takes 13 years to get you to graduation.

Speaker 3:
I remember in fifth grade I loved my fifth grade teacher. Miss Baron.

Anthony Godfrey:
Yeah. What about the spirit?

Speaker 3:
She told me I could change the world and I will always remember that because I had never had someone told me that. Sorry. even if it's small, but it's important to feel like you can make difference in the world, even if it's in just people's lives. And she saw that in me and everyone in my class and to this day, she is one of my favorite teachers because she made class so fun, but also it was important even if it was just the fifth grade,

Anthony Godfrey:
You can change the world. And I'm excited. She got that message through to a fifth grader. Thanks for spending time with us. I know that it's an exciting and busy week. So I appreciate you sitting down and chatting with us for a bit and best of luck on everything. I'm sure you're going to find a great path for yourself. Thank you.

Speaker 1:
[Inaudible] Without

Anthony Godfrey:
Copper Hills, I wouldn't be the person I am today. I know just three years ago. I couldn't imagine giving a speech at graduation, but enough about me because funny enough for the valedictorian, I hate talking about myself. When I first told my friends and family, they tried to rationalize how I got here for having both parents drop out of school. I guess they felt like they had to come up with a reason. Some of them said it was because I learned from their choices. Most of them applauded my resolve and my love for education. But to tell you the truth, I'm only here on the stage because of all of you. I really do mean all of you without my parents. I wouldn't even be here on the stage. Thought my teachers, I wouldn't have done well in school. And without my friends, I wouldn't have enjoyed high school as much as I did.

Anthony Godfrey:
And without every parent here in this audience, I wouldn't have those friends, every action, big and small put me up on this stage. Our spheres of influence are so interconnected and now we're all graduating. It's our turn to make a new beginning for ourselves. So our dreams and what we want to do. And we do leave the stadium today. We'll do that with the help of those around us. Jose Rodriguez, Lira. That was a great speech. Very compelling story. How proud are your, are your parents? If you, I would say that they're really proud. I, I love them so much. And I, I know that even if sometimes they don't show it, especially my dad, he's a lot more calm and collected. I just know that they're really proud of just all the time, while they have good reason to be obviously their sacrifices have paid off and your sacrifices have paid off.

Anthony Godfrey:
How does that feel to be at this stage of things? It feels really good because I know that when I look back on all the sacrifices they've made, sometimes I've really adored my parents for everything they've done. But at the same time, I wish that they could have had the opportunities that I have. But looking back looking, looking at this moment right now, I think that it all just makes it a little bit better just to know that there was a reason for all of it happening and that it all turned out. Okay. So what are your plans next? I'm going to be, I'm going to be going to the university of Utah. I'm not quite sure what I want to major in, but I know that I want to do something in the social sciences area. What would you say is your favorite class?

Anthony Godfrey:
My favorite class, I would have to say that it was European history. That class was really the beginning of me getting out of my shell. I explicitly remember getting into that class and not wanting to ask a single question being too nervous too. But then because of all the clubs I joined, because I was willing to put myself out there, I remember raising my class a little, sorry. I remember raising my hand a little bit more and more each day in that class. And I just adored all the concepts in there in the way that that history has impacted the facts of today's life. What would you say to those who are just starting off in high school? I would, it sounds a little cliche, but I really would say to join as many things as you can. I think people don't take advantage of all the really great programs that every single school has from the diverse set of classes that we have from clubs to just talking to new people. I, I really promise you that as long as you are willing to put yourself out there and talk and make new experiences, high school will be worth it for you. And you'll love it. You have a lot of wisdom for someone just graduating from high school and you're well beyond where I was when I graduated. So I know great things are ahead for you. Thanks for spending time with us. And I wish you all the best in the future. Yeah. Thank you so much. It was such a pleasure.

Anthony Godfrey:
Thanks for joining us on the super cast. Remember education is the most important thing you will do today. We'll see how [inaudible].

Show Audio Transcription

They are reaching for the stars in Amy Geilman’s creative writing class at West Jordan Middle School. It is part of a lesson in letter writing where students choose a famous person to reach out to with a formal letter. Then, the students wait for a response.

On this episode of the Supercast, we talk to students who heard back from celebrities like Chris Pratt and former President Obama, even the Utah Jazz sent letters in return. Find out what they learned from writing and reaching for the stars.


Audio Transcription

Anthony Godfrey:
Hello, and welcome to the Supercast. I'm your host, Superintendent Anthony Godfrey. They're reaching for the stars in Amy Geilman's class at West Jordan Middle School. It's part of a lesson in letter writing where students choose a famous person to reach out to with a formal letter. Then students wait for a response. On this episode of the Supercast, we talk with students who heard back from celebrities like Chris Pratt and former President Obama, even the Utah Jazz sent letters in return. Find out what students learned from writing and reaching for the stars. We're here at West Jordan Middle School to speak with Amy Geilman and some of her students about the project that has been going on for quite a number of years, writing celebrities and famous people for their autograph. Thanks for spending time with us today. Tell me a little bit about this project.

Teacher:
Sure. So I think we started maybe 15-16 years ago, doing this in an effort to help kids learn to introduce themselves in writing to someone they might not know and be a little more formal as they do. We talk about what makes a good letter, how to communicate, what are appropriate questions to ask or what is appropriate to ask for. We don't let them ask, please send me seven pairs of shoes or something like that. They have to be able to recognize and think about what kinds of questions would be good to get information about. And it's been really fun. We've received responses from lots of people over there.

Anthony Godfrey:
Now, what gave you the idea initially to start this project in your classes, your language arts teacher?

Teacher:
Yeah. I wanted the kids to do a piece of writing that would go public, so to speak. Now it was easier to publish something. Because it was a little bit harder to publish things, you know, back when I started doing it. I wanted them to see that writing was a real world activity that could lead to real world things. And I realized that a lot of the kids had not really sent letters to people and that still continues with a lot of students. Sometimes when I give them an envelope, they address the wrong side of it. They just have not done a whole lot of mailing like that. And so I wanted them to see that writing was a real world activity that people did that could lead to results of something. And this was a fun way to do that. And now that we do so much public writing on the internet, this is a good chance for me to talk about what kind of impression you're making through your writing and how you can present yourself in the best light.

Anthony Godfrey:
Do you think a letter stands out more than it used to when a celebrity receives a letter from a middle school student?

Teacher:
Yes. I think that because a lot of my students have commented on a YouTube channel or put a comment on a gaming channel that they follow. But they haven't done something formal like this. And actually the longer we've done this, the more of a novelty. The letter part is where they actually get something physical. And I'm sure that the celebrities still receive a lot of physical fan mail, but probably not near as much as they used to. And so I do think it stands out.

Anthony Godfrey:
Now, where do you find the addresses? How do you discover where to send that? I'm sure that's a little bit of a task.

Teacher:
That is tricky. Yeah, no kidding. I was just commenting I think if the District checked my Google search history, they'd be thinking, what is her deal? There are a couple of websites that do put fan mail addresses out there, but if the student chooses to write to a particular singer or actor, sometimes I'll look up who their agent is. Or who their agency is if they play for a specific team, I'll send it to the team front office. You just kind of have to be a little creative and a bit of a detective. Occasionally they come back with the wrong address and then I'll try again. And if I can't find it, then I'll tell them student, I couldn't find this one. The letter came back. You can write to some else.

Anthony Godfrey:
No, I thought you were going to say that if you can't then you look up records in the county office in whatever state they live so that you know what their home residence is so that you can stake it out.

Teacher:
Well, I haven't gotten quite that far yet.

Anthony Godfrey:
Yeah. Not quite that far. That's probably best.  I do have to say I'm a huge fan of making a connection with celebrities. I have, since I was a kid. I've stood outside many concerts afterward and stood outside the Vampire Weekend Concert when it was opened or when it was over and the guard said, "Oh, they've all left." And then I said, "No, they haven't." And he said, "Yes, they have." And so then an hour later they finally thought, this guy's not leaving. So they walked out and I got their autograph. It would be a lot easier if I'd just done it through the mail. That would have been a lot smarter, but a I'm fascinated by this because I have always wanted to get the picture with the celebrity or get that autograph.

Teacher:
You talked about how it's nice to be able to connect with someone you admire and to tell them what you admire about them and be able to let them know that they're inspiring you in some way. So then that's cool.

Anthony Godfrey:
And you're right. I've taken the same kind of approach that you're describing. I'm always polite "Excuse me, Mr. Bono, could I get your autograph please?" You know, and it helps to be very polite and know the right way to approach them. And it sounds like you've really been able to do that over the years. The front office is a way to reach them. The agent is a good way to reach them, that sort of thing, or be creative. Do you mostly have find success with getting the right address at least, where it's not returned?

Teacher:
Yeah. Most of them don't get returned. Occasionally they come back, but most of them don't get returned. This year, we got fewer responses than I think than we have in the past. But this year's been strange for everybody. But we do get a random sampling of responses and it's really fun for the kids to see when it comes. We address it back to the school so the student's home address has never given out. And then it's fun for the kids to get it in class, in front of all their students and their classmates and say, "Here, you got mail. Let's see what they sent you." And it's really fun. And we get some really good responses. Authors are really good at responding, which is not surprising because they are writers. Actors respond quite often. I was telling the students that Adam Sandler is always really good about sending a postcard back. We've gotten responses from Jim Carrey and other famous people. And then athletes are really good at responding as well. Not so much with the singers. They don't respond quite as often. Sometimes students will write to the governor's office. They're always really good to respond back. And then we've sent some to the White House over the years.

Anthony Godfrey:
So the singers are the tough group.

Teacher:
I don't know. They must just get inundated. I don't know. I've sent a lot of letters to various singers over the years and occasionally we get a response, but not as much as you'd think.

Anthony Godfrey:
What are some of the surprising responses over the years?

Teacher:
Let's see......Well, the new England Patriots send us a big packet of stuff one year. We get lots of photos with autographs on the bottom, but then lots of times they'll throw in other things: bookmarks or stickers, decals that kids can put on things. It's just fun for the kids to be able to get something in response to what they've sent out. The year that the NBA did their lockout, Jimmer Fredette was just finishing his BYU career and was just starting. He sent a handwritten letter, which was really cool. It was a full page to that student. And then we did get a good response. I'm not sure which coach sent it back, but the year after, or two years after Jordan Leveridge was a player at the West Jordan High School basketball team. Then, a little bit after that this student who knew him and was a fan of his, sent a letter to the Utah Basketball Program, men's basketball, and they sent back a really nice handwritten letter commenting on how great Jordan Leveridge was and how great West Jordan is. And that was really fun too.

Anthony Godfrey:
That's an exciting project. I'm starting to think of all the people that I need to write now, using your tips and tricks. Let's talk to a few students who have written some athletes and politicians, actors, authors. Here we have Carter, also known as Beast here. And you wrote Chris Pratt. Tell me about that.

Student:
I didn't really have a choice to write to him. My sister really likes him, so she said I had better write to him because I never got a write to a famous person. So in the letter, if Mrs. Geilman, didn't see, I wrote my sister really likes you too at the end with the wink. I was so embarrassed to put that in there, but she forced me to and then...

Anthony Godfrey:
Now wait. You talked t
wice about your sister forcing you to do things. How big is your sister?

Student:
Lily knows her, but she's probably the scariest person I've ever met.

Anthony Godfrey:
Okay. So your sister has complete control over you. We've established that you add at the bottom that my sister likes you too, with a wink. How does Chris Pratt respond?

Student:
He sent me an autograph with no letter back, but it's still really cool. It says, "All your best wishes. Chris Pratt"

Anthony Godfrey:
That's a really cool picture.

Student:
Yeah.

Anthony Godfrey:
Again, I mentioned this before that would be very expensive if you tried to buy that someplace else. And that's really cool. That's a picture it looks like from Guardians of the Galaxy, if I'm not mistaken.

Student:
Yeah.

Anthony Godfrey:
And so, did your sister treat you well for at least a day or two after that came in response?

Student:
Yeah. Every once in a while I have to go track it down because she likes to steal it from me.

Anthony Godfrey:
She steals it from you. I think you may need to put that in an undisclosed location somewhere or else it could disappear forever.

Student:
So like a week later, I woke up to find myself on KSL.

Anthony Godfrey:
Oh yes. I remember seeing that article that you were covered by KSL. What was that like? Did you feel like a little bit of a celebrity yourself being interviewed like that?

Student:
Yeah, it was amazing I guess. I'm also wearing the same shirt.

Anthony Godfrey:
So I wasn't going to point that out. But when you go by Beast wearing the shirt that says "Beast" it just makes sense. You know, how did it feel getting a response?

Student:
Crazy. My sister went crazy of course. More than I did actually, but yeah.

Anthony Godfrey:
Yeah.

Student:
It's pretty fun. Then it seemed we just binge watch everything Chris Pratt has ever been in. But she's never seen a movie, actually. She just likes him.

Anthony Godfrey:
Wow. So she just likes the look of him? Your sister is quite a character. It sounds like she's going to love this.

Anthony Godfrey:
Yeah, be sure she gets a chance to listen to this.

Stay with us. When we come back, hear more about the celebrity responses students receive as part of their letter writing projects.

Break:
One of the most prestigious academic achievement program available for high school students, and we're proud to say it's coming back to Jordan School District. We're talking about the International Baccalaureate (IB) programs, which will be located at West Jordan High School. The IB programs support personal and academic achievement for students at the very highest level. IB diploma courses take place during a student's junior and senior year in high school. Sophomores are invited to consider the IB program for next year. There are no prerequisites for IB and interested middle school students can start preparing now. Students with the IB diploma have a better chance at getting into some of the most prestigious universities in the world. For more information or to find out if your teen is a good candidate for IB, visit http://ib.jordandistrict.org or call West Jordan High School.

Anthony Godfrey:
Benjamin. Tell us about writing. You wrote Richard Paul.

Student:
I decided to write Richard Paul Evans, the author.

Anthony Godfrey:

And what made you want to write to him?

Student:
I was reading a lot of books in his series at the time. That's The Lightning Boy series?

Anthony Godfrey:
What is it again now?

Student:
No, that's Michael Vey.

Anthony Godfrey:
Yeah. Yes. Okay. So how did that go?

Student:
I got a letter back answering all the questions that I asked.

Anthony Godfrey:
Didn't just ask for an autograph, you asked him some questions. Was it about the Michael Vey character?

Student
More like the series in general?

Anthony Godfrey:
I just called him lightening boy, because I haven't read the book. Was I anywhere close?

Student:
Yeah.

Anthony Godfrey:
Okay. Tell me some of the questions that you asked him. How did he answer?

Student:
I asked about the covers. They were really interesting to me and so I wanted to know who made them and how.

Anthony Godfrey:
How did you become a bigger fan after you heard back from him?

Student:
Yeah.

Anthony Godfrey:
And did he sign something for you as well?

Student:
He didn't specifically say anything, but he wrote.

Anthony Godfrey:
Was it a typed letter?

Student:
It was a semi-automatic thing.

Anthony Godfrey:
Yeah. That's pretty cool though. That's great that you heard back from him. Delilah and Evelyn, you wrote the same person. Who did you write?

Student:
Barack Obama.

Anthony Godfrey:
And what made you want to write Barack Obama?

Student:
Well when he was our president, I felt like he was a really good one. I felt like he really helped change the world for the better. So I just wanted to write him and show him how thankful I was to him when he was our president.

Anthony Godfrey:
That what you told him in the letter?

Student:
Yeah.

Anthony Godfrey:
And what did you receive? Any response?

Speaker 5:
A picture of him and a signed autograph on it.

Anthony Godfrey:
And Evelyn, what made you want to write former president?

Student:
Well really, I didn't really know who to write to and the same thing. Delilah said that she thought he was a really good president and that he changed the world.

Anthony Godfrey:
And what did you receive in reply? The same picture?

Student:
No. It was a different picture of the whole family in the office and the signed autograph and the envelope with the email address was handwritten.

Anthony Godfrey:
So what have you done with those photos? You have an autograph that's worth a fair amount I would say. What have you done with that?

Student:
Hung up in my room by my calendar, right when you walk in my room. Just with some duct tape on each corner, up on the wall.

Anthony Godfrey:
How about you, Evelyn?

Student:
I am currently in a process of moving, so I bought a picture frame and put it in there and it's on my desk.

Anthony Godfrey:
That's great. What a nice the memento of your language arts class. Lily, you wrote the Jazz?

Student:
I did.

Anthony Godfrey:
How many Jazz players or did you write the team? Who did you write exactly?

Student:
I just wrote to the entire team.

Anthony:
And what did you write? some advice going into the playoffs?

Student:
I just wrote about how I still watch them, how me and my dad and my family would just stay and watch them a bunch and how we just like loved watching them.

Anthony Godfrey:
And what did you get in response?

Student:
I got some stickers. I got some bookmarks. I got a few pencils and some erasers.

Anthony Godfrey:
That's pretty awesome. And how long ago was that?

Student:
Maybe November-ish?

Anthony Godfrey:
In the fall before they knew what a great year they had ahead of them. That's pretty awesome. And what a great year you had ahead of you? Right? How does this compare to other writing projects that you've done in classes over the years writing?

Student:
I don't like writing in general, but with this, at least I had something to look forward to. I guess you could say with other ones, I think, oh my goodness, am I going to fail this essay? But this one, it was fine.

Teacher:
She never does.

Anthony Godfrey:
All right.

Teacher:
So you may not like writing, but you're better at it than you think. The nice thing about this is that there was something to look forward to. This was an exchange and I think it's an exciting project. In the real world, writing is something that's really important for students to experience.

Anthony Godfrey:
I assume that a 50 year old man is a little bit less successful in writing celebrities than a middle school student, possibly the lack of charm after about age 18 that sets in that makes it more difficult to get a response, I would say. Who are some of the other celebrities that students have heard back from them?

Teacher:
We got a response from The Rock. We got a response from RSL. They're always really good to respond so quickly because they're local and they always send a nice bunch of things. Lin Manuel Miranda responded this year.

Anthony Godfrey:
Yeah?

Teacher:
He just he sent back an autographed picture. It was really nice. One of the girls wrote to a YouTuber that she really likes and I was randomly able to find an address, which is hard to do for YouTubers, but she got a response and it's been good.

Anthony Godfrey:
YouTuber wrote in the physical world. On a piece of paper, shocking.

Teacher:
I always warn them. If you pick a YouTuber, I might tell you to pick somebody else if I can't find an address. But more and more of them are having PO boxes that I can send them to them.

Anthony Godfrey:
That's awesome. Well, what a great project. Thanks for spending time talking about it. I think it's authentic writing in its best form, where you may even have an exchange with someone you admire. So thank you very much. And over 15 years, celebrities around the world have gotten to know West Jordan Middle School. I suspect.

Teacher:
They have.

Anthony Godfrey:
All right. Thank you very much.

Thanks for joining us on the Supercast. Remember, education is the most important thing you will do today. We'll see out there.

Show Audio Transcription

It is a competitive sport that is taking off around the world with talk of being added to the 2024 Olympic games. We are talking about eSports, competitive video gaming that has high school students across Jordan School District signing up to take on teams from all over the State.

On this episode of the Supercast, find out how eSports is taking video gaming to a new level with competitive gameplay, challenging young minds and improving their mental, visual and physical coordination. eSports is even bringing students together in a community where they may find new careers.


Audio Transcription

Anthony Godfrey:
On this episode of the Supercast, find out how eSports is taking video gaming to a new level with competitive game play, challenging young minds and improving their mental, visual and physical coordination. E-sports is even bringing students together in a community where they may find new careers.

Let's start by talking to a competitive gamer and his coach. We are here at JATC North to talk about eSports. They have one of the premier eSports teams here in Jordan District. And we're here with a Dithea ,who is on the team and Amber Saffen, who is the coach for the team. The team just started this year and they're going to teach me all about it. Thanks for spending time with me today, guys.

Student:
Oh, thank you. Happy to be here.

Anthony Godfrey:
Alright. Tell me the description of what eSports is for those who are listening at home. And they just sat down their controller. They stopped playing Defender and Qbert, and now they want to know about eSports.

Student:
Alright. So basically for everyone that doesn't know about eSports, eSports is basically just any video game that is played competitively to the level where it's kind of a professional match. Most of you guys know traditional sports, like soccer, football, baseball, that everyone has small leagues. They play in Little Leagues, etc., but eSports is just like that, but with video games. So there are the professional leagues where like the NBA, NFL, for like specific sports. So each different video game is a different sport. So League of Legends, that's a type of different sport than Overwatch. Those are like different sports.

Anthony Godfrey:
So within Overwatch and League of Legends, there are different levels of play. Is that right?

Student:
That's completely correct. So basically, in the each game there are different rankings and different levels of play. The higher up you go, the more professional you are, just like that in any other sport. The higher and the better you are, the higher the leagues you'll be playing in.

Anthony Godfrey:
Alright. Coach Saffen, what level would we be competing in an eSport at the high school level?

Coach:
So just like you said, there are the different individual games with their individual rankings. Those rankings for an eSport player help determine your eligibility for those more professional leagues. The nice thing about having a District eSports team is that they can get that experience competing, but they're not restricted to that eligibility by ranking. We can have students who have never played a game before, or haven't built up that ranking and they can come and join the team. And we compete on a State level or a Regional level, depending on the eSport, depending on the game, and then those players want to continue to the professional league. Those would be based off their individual game rankings.

Anthony Godfrey:
So you can compete at the high school level without being ranked beyond that you have to be ranked. Is that correct?

Coach:
Yeah. So to compete at the professional level, the rankings do determine your eligibility.

Anthony Godfrey:
Okay. So how does this ranking happen? It's probably not like when I used to be ranked on Dig Dug because I had the highest score of the day and then they unplug it at night. And the next day I can, once again, work to be the highest score at Chuckie Cheese. This is more complex then?

Coach:
Yeah. That would upset a lot of professional league players, I'm sure. So basically, and you can correct me if I'm wrong since he's a pretty high ranking player himself, the season starts for a particular game and then those games count towards their ranking. So as they compete individually through the company, and that's a big difference between what you would call traditional sports and eSports is that in eSports you have kind of a third player that's the company that owns the game. They themselves determine things like how. Those rankings are all determined by League of Legends, the company's competition.

Anthony Godfrey:
Tell me about your ranking.

Student:
Okay. So I typically only play League of Legends. I am a gold player and I've peaked platinum in different seasons. So let me explain what this means. In the rankings, it starts from iron and it goes to bronze, silver, gold, platinum, diamond, masters, grandmasters, challenger. Challengers is top 500. So in each of those rankings, they have divisions to clearly show how skilled you are and how much game knowledge you actually have. And it just kind of shows what you are. So basically, starters would be around iron to bronze to silver. Those are the lower end league, those who just started the game,  just getting to know it. Gold to platinum is like, we're just getting better. I know the game a little more and I'm actually getting good. Then platinum to diamond is when I'm almost getting into the higher end where I'm getting really skilled and professional. And then masters to challengers, that's the full-on professional scene, that's where you can start getting into eSports.

Anthony Godfrey:
The professional level. Now I understand that you're an award-winner. Tell me what happened there.

Student:
So this was for shout-casting, which is just kind of talking over the game that's being played at an eSports game. So what I did was I color-casted and shout-casted, which is our play-by-play castings, two different types of castings on a specific match played in one of the professional leagues. And I placed for exceeding expectations and doing really well in the shout-casting.

Anthony Godfrey:
So where does shout-casting versus color-casting?

Student:
Okay. So color-casting is basically explaining the game and telling why a player did what they did and what's happening in the game. You're kind of the brains of the person. The play-by-play casting is usually telling you what's happening at the time.They're usually the ones that are like screaming, shouting, like kind of building up the hype of the moment of the game.

Anthony Godfrey
So the color-casting is just describing, now he's going to go to this move because that's the best way to kill an overt in the game. So there's color-casting, and then there is play by play and that's all part of the shout-casting. Do you have to shout it?

Student:
Um, it depends on your type of style. Some people, they try to make up the hype by raising their voice, or like starting to talk faster or they start wrapping, it's like super speed. Uh, it's really depends on your style.

Anthony Godfrey:
Exactly.

Anthony Godfrey:
Stay with us. When we come back, find out how competitive gaming is bringing students together in a supportive community and how the sport could lead to successful careers.

Break:
Do you simply love learning online? We can't wait to have you join the amazing teachers in our brand new Jordan Virtual Learning Academy. In Jordan Virtual Learning Academy schools, we offer innovative, fun and flexible online learning with daily, real-time instruction from teachers. Enrollment is currently open for all K-12 students in Utah. Start on the path to personalized virtual learning success now at http://connect.jordandistrict.org.

Anthony Godfrey:
Now you said that you did commentary for some of the professional leagues. Are you watching something that has already taken place or are you doing it live?

Student:
Uh, for the competition I did, it had already taken place, but usually you do it live, so it's honestly, you don't have time to plan it out. If I were to do a video, I can obviously just look through it, planning out what to say. But when it's live, you don't know what you're trying to say. It's all on the spot.

Coach:
So we shot the live match between Mountain Ridge and Riverton High. And that was live and the struggles that come with that is if you get a tech issue, you kind of have to stall a sports announcer boy. If suddenly the game went away, they'd have to just talk and all that. Right? So it's that live broadcasting skillset. It's the same thing except with eSports.

Anthony Godfrey:
Okay. Well, let's get a little sample. Do you mind showing me how this works?

Student:
All right.

Anthony Godfrey:
Okay. So describe the setup first of all, before we begin.

Student:
Okay. So what we have is obviously on one monitor, we have the game running so we can see what's happening. And we also have a mic there so that when we can talk into the mic and see it. And we have another monitor to watch the stream labs. We can take in the voice and record it. So that's basically the usual setup for a shout-caster. Usually all you need is like mic and a monitor to see what's happening in the game.

Coach:
I think what's going to be really helpful here, just so you know what the game is going to look like, give you a little bit of prep. The first section will be what's called the bans and the picks. So bans and the picks. Each team is going to alternate between picking their character that they're gonna play and banning the other team from picking a character that way. And so this is a very strategic part of the match. So what you can do while this is happening, you can ask a DP about why they're picking and banning these because he knows all the reasons why they would pick or ban, those characters. I'm going to start as halfway through the pixel bands because it can sometimes take a while. So that way you can get in. Do you think you can kind of explain what's going on and then pick up from there? So I'm going to hit record here.

Student:
So basically, we're in the middle of picks and bans. If I were to be shout-casting right now, I would be telling the people watching, as an entertainer, what they're banning, why they're banning this, what they're picking, why they're picking this and all the stuff like that. So right now, the blue side, which is the one on the left, they are currently banning or they're choosing to ban someone and they're thinking, oh they just banned Lylia, which is just a jungler. The only reason they banned Lylia was because the red side or the other enemy team didn't pick the jungler. They were thinking, so let's band another jungler he doesn't get one.

Anthony Godfrey:
That's like doing the NFL draft, but being able to tell people who they can't have, and not just picking who you can.

Student:
Exactly. So now that we got into the game, you can kind of see the lanes here. If you can see, this is top lane over here. This is just a map by the way.

Anthony Godfrey:
So you know a lot about this.

Student:
Yes.

Anthony Godfrey:
Okay. Let's hear a little shout-casting.

Student:
Okay. So we're three minutes in, and we're looking at the bot lane right now, nothing's happening so far. We're just getting into the game bot lane. Just sound are con going into, sorry, jumping in, getting the cue onto the silver, silver, getting low, but just has to walk away. Leona kind of got tacked on at your son is running away realizing that she has no, each piece is different. Kind of it gets that damage and double flash from bottling killing, uh, Susana. First of all, added to silver. That was a really well played by the juggler are invited from bottling, from flapjack and Wolfie. Now cat was getting attacked by the jungler and ADC. Catlin has to run away realizing that he might die as flush away. Now a gold lead side of the, just one cable lead for two Tulay, uh, not too big of a lead, but thick enough to say that it's going pretty well in the early game. CS wise, a lot of, uh, good CS, four to LA. They're getting a lot of gold and got a lot of experience. And from now on the game will go pretty slow. So

Anthony Godfrey:
Just for contrast, to show what a nice job you did, I'm going to try shout-casting. Okay. All right. Let's give it a shot. All right. We have the green fairy that's walking along with a cape. It seems to be feathers. She's distracted walking off into the brush. We have lots of minions. They have red hoods. All their hoods are red. They're walking and shooting red dots at the blue guys and the blue guys, boy two on three, they seem to be taking it. Someone's walking in a bubble. Now back to you.

Speaker 2:
Good job. That was a really good.

Anthony Godfrey:
I'm going to test you here. I'm going to try to connect to the audience out there. We have a lot of parents that listen, and some of them play Candy cCush. Are you familiar with Candy crush?

Student:
I've heard
of it, but never really played it.

Anthony Godfrey:
Okay. Well let me explain it. And then I want you to do some color-commentary or some shout-casting of my Candy Crush game. What I'm trying to do is match up candies. When you match them up, they disappear and they do various things on here.

Student:
Um, so he's moving into the red candy you're going in and getting the three. You're getting popping, everything, getting four in a row, the blue candy getting four on the none, the purple hitting for many, I don't know what's happened with so many candies are bursting everywhere and he's bursting everywhere. So what you're trying to see here, he's just trying to get as many numbers as he can on the board getting so many blocks down and down and getting all this four in the rows, doing so much damage to the board, exploding everywhere. So you know what? Candy crush never seemed so fun.

Anthony Godfrey:
Good job. All right. Is this something you want to continue after high school?

Student:
Oh, definitely. II am actually considering doing this as a career, if possible. I know it's really hard to get into, but from all the videos and all the stuff I've watched from other casters, professional casters, they just keep saying to keep following your dream and keep pushing to do it. And the more you do it, the more practice you'll get and the more people will see you. And if more people see you, there'll be say, "Oh, I want this guy to cast for me."

Anthony Godfrey:
Yeah, that's exciting. That's great.

Coach:
And I think it's a really great thing that as the District started this up, because we were able, through items have a shout-casting class that students were able to do. And through that, that's one of the ways Dithea got connected to the competition, and connected to some of the coaches at the college level. They teach that pathway to the career. We watched interviews with some professional shout-casters who talked about how to get there. It's really nice that at the high school level, we can now take a student who wants to take this beyond a hobby to something at a professional level and be able to teach them the steps to how to actually do that.

Anthony Godfrey:
So this really can be a launching pad for a career and for a scholarship and for pursuing this further.

Coach:
Absolutely. As much as I love video games, just as a consumer and a gamer, it's the eSports aspect of how this can help the students in the future. that really interests me as a teacher. So being able to have students get that scholarship money at the next level. I mean, eSports, as an entertainment industry, is getting really big. So the colleges are offering money for players who can play and shout-casters who can shout-cast to make them entertaining for the people watching the college level games.

Anthony Godfrey:
Tell me, what would you say to students who are considering being part of an eSports team?

Coach:
I would say, go try out at your local high school. TI wouldn't worry too much about your level. Everyone's going to start. I had a lot of players say, I wasn't sure I was going to be good enough for the team. And then they come in and have a really great time. And then going on to the college level, you need that ability of working with a team that you're not able to get from at home. So if you're looking to be an eSports professional player, come find your local eSports team so you can get that team experience rather than just your solo ranking at home. You need that to kind of buff your resume in a way, when you go on to college and want to join those colleges.

Anthony Godfrey:
Cami Taylor oversees eSports for the District. Cami, what is it like among coaches?

Cami:
Yeah. I appreciate having the chance to brag about the amazing people who run our school programs. Everyone who runs the high school program is a teacher and a coach. This is a volunteer thing that they signed up for with no expectation of what we would or wouldn't make out of it. So we meet at least once a month, but usually twice a month. And we just talk about what works, what doesn't work, how can we make this better? I have to brag about our schools. We have a program at our seven high schools, so they'll give you who are listening and want to join, there is one at your school. You should definitely be a part of it. In our first year, we had three teams qualify for state. We had a detail you've been on this podcast play second and shout shoutcasting for the State. So to be a brand new club who only played one season, I think that we are doing a really amazing job and that's because of our coaches and the way they communicate with each other.

Anthony Godfrey:
Okay. We've had a really fast start. Tell me about how quickly membership, just mushroomed.

Cami:
Yeah, so it's been fascinating to watch. I know there's pent up demand. We have had a lot of students who want to play. We just started this in January of this year and we started competing in February. So to have done all of that in a short five months is really impressive. We currently have 120 kids on our roster and that's just for one season. And some schools only played one game. Amber Saffen, who you met today, she coaches three different games. So this coach is here every night of the week until 9:00. Think about that. She's taught all day and then does this as well. So do all of our other coaches at the high schools. They are managing this, spending time with the students. In fact, we recently met together as coaches and some of them said, I won't know what to do with all my free time ow that we've worked and the season just ended.

Anthony Godfrey:
I do appreciate all of that time and effort because it allows students to connect in a unique way that just hasn't been available previously. And I think we reach more students that way. And that's always the call. Thank you for your oversight at the District level and your help getting this up and running, really from scratch. And to those coaches who have had that going and are now all in. We're excited.

Cami:
Yeah. Thank you. And thank you to our School Board who supported us. I know that was an ask up at the beginning. We want to make sure we thank the local administration who supports their schools, the School Board who supports us. Your support obviously is very important. So we really feel welcomed and excited about this new platform.

Anthony Godfrey:
Well, good things are ahead. Thanks everybody. Thanks for joining us on another episode of the Supercast. Remember, education is the most important thing you'll do today. We'll see out there.

Show Audio Transcription

They will be rolling out the red carpet at Bingham High School as drama students star in Shakespeare’s Hamlet. Because of COVID, a stage version of the play was replaced by students filming all the scenes for a big screen production.

On this episode of the Supercast, we find out what it was like for students filming Shakespeare and trading a live stage for the big screen.

We caught up with the cast of Hamlet as they were filming a scene in the greenhouse at Bingham High.


Audio Transcription

Anthony Godfrey:
Hello and welcome to the Supercast. I'm your host, Superintendent Anthony Godfrey. They will be rolling out the red carpet at Bingham High School as drama students star in Shakespeare's Hamlet. Because of COVID, a stage version of the play was replaced by students filming all the scenes for a big screen production. On this episode of the Supercast, we find out what it was like for students filming Shakespeare and trading a live stage for the big screen. We caught up with the cast as they were filming a scene in the greenhouse at Bingham High.

"Grating so harshly all his days of quiet with turbulent, dangerous lunacy? He does confess he feels himself distracted. But from what cause he will by no means speak. Nor do we find him forward to be sounded, but with a crafty madness, keeps aloof when we would bring him on to some confession of his state. Did he receive you well? Most like a gentlemen. But with much forcing of his disposition. 'Tis most true, and he beseeched me to entreat your Majesties to hear and see the matter.  With all my heart, and it doth much content me to hear him so inclined.  Good gentlemen, give him a further edge and drive his purpose into these delights."

Anthony Godfrey:
We're here outside the green house at Bingham High School to talk with Mr. Purdy about a project he's doing with his theater students. Mr. Purdy, thanks for joining us.

Teacher:
Yeah, absolutely.

Anthony Godfrey:
Tell us a little bit about what you're working on.

Teacher:
So we are taking Shakespeare's Hamlet and turning it into a film. So the students help out the production assistant, camera stuff, lighting and then just all the theater students are auditioned and they got in the film and it's just a new experience for them. Film acting. It's a completely different thing than theater.

Anthony Godfrey:
So is this a film adaptation in order to kind of cope with the impact that the pandemic has on your ability to perform live?

Teacher:
Yes, exactly. That was the whole thought behind it is. How can we do something creatively and in a new way, still give the students a really good experience, having them learn something new.

Anthony Godfrey:
Now you said that film acting and stage acting are different. What are the different approaches that students have to learn when they are acting on film as opposed to on stage?

Teacher:
Well, first of all, on stage they have to be huge all the time. Just really big, big facial expressions, big movement. The closer the camera is, the more you have to get rid of that. It's all about honesty and subtlety and just being real. So the big stuff doesn't work unless the camera's really, really far away. The big thing though, that's changed for them is that they get very little rehearsal time because we have to shoot. We have to rehearse a little bit and shoot every week and edit as we go along. So they don't get very much rehearsal and they have to memorize way, way faster. So it's a big learning curve, but they're doing an amazing job

Anthony Godfrey:
And memorizing Shakespeare presents a special challenge. But it's also very valuable to do that level of work. Why Hamlet?

Teacher:
Well, my favorite thing to direct is Shakespeare. I'm super passionate about Shakespeare and Hamlet. I don't know, for one thing, Hamlet just something I've always been afraid to do. But since I was throwing so much on the kids, I've always wanted to do Hamlet, I thought, let's just really go for it and do the big one, right? The vague Hamlet. That's, I just feel like it, there's some themes and such that are helpful maybe as you consider at this time.

Anthony Godfrey:
Shakespeare, I love Hamlet and actually, I'm here to audition for the part of Yorick. You think I could get that?

Teacher:
Do you want me to give you the real answer?

Anthony Godfrey:
Yeah.

Teacher:
Yeah. I think you, I think you could pull it off but not because you look like a skull.

Anthony Godfrey:
Okay.

Teachers:
I just think you've got it.

Anthony Godfrey:
I just thaught if I went for Yorick, maybe I can get there. Maybe that can happen for me. It's, you know, there are no small parts, right? Just small actors and I don't intend to be a small actor. I intend to make the most of Yorick's part.

Teacher:
Okay. You got it. From what I can see so far, you've got the role.

Anthony Godfrey:
See, I love this. This feels very validating. Okay, now tell me, you said that Shakespeare is one of the things you most like to direct. What is it that you like about directing Shakespeare?

Teacher:
Well, I love the language and the poetry. But probably the thing I love the most is that you can take these amazing stories, you can set them anywhere. You can do anything with them. For one thing, they are public domain, so you can kind of change it up, shake it up and Shakespeare can't do anything about it. But also I think that he would love the fact that his work continues on and on and on for so many years because you can do so much with it. For example, this one, we're setting it modern in our world. Our own modern world with Shakespeare's Hamlet as a documentary filmmaker. And he decides to use that skill and the camera to document what's going on in order to avenge his father and things like that. So I just love the possibilities with Shakespeare.

Anthony Godfrey:
Have you always wanted to layer a new challenge with additional challenges? Being new to the school, a pandemic, let's put the play into a video form and make a film instead, and let's adapt a Hamlet for the modern day. I mean you're taking on a lot of layers of challenges. And I really admire that. Is that just part of the package?

Teacher:
Sometimes I probably get myself into trouble by doing that, but in the end it all works out. And in the end I learned a ton. My students learned a ton because you can't really grow without those challenges. So, yeah, that's just kind of how I am.

Anthony Godfrey:
I hear a crow, and because we're talking about Shakespeare, everything feels like an omen. I feel like something awful that happened to me.

Teacher:
Do we need to knock on wood or what are we doing?

Anthony Godfrey:
I don't know, is there anything we can do? I think we just turn ourselves over the fate.  We'll see what happens. You heard it here first. Tell me what are the outcomes that you hope for from this experience for students?

Teacher:
Well, I want them to gain a new skill, for one thing. There are  so many opportunities in film for careers. And so I've felt like that's just another tool in their belt. My goal for Shakespeare all the time is that the students are going to come away with a greater appreciation for the past and that language and that history, because there's so much history. And when you do a Shakespeare piece, I just feel like they're going to be more well-rounded and hopefully they'll gain some maturity through all the challenges, right? And they'll come at their work in their futures, in their acting work, a little bit more mature, a little bit more disciplined. So it's all about growth for me in watching the students gain new skills.

Anthony Godfrey:
They will be more versatile, and there'll be ready for any challenge. If you can do modern day Hamlet on film as a high school student, there are a lot of skills that are going to transfer to other projects. We pulled you out of the greenhouse where the filming is taking place. So tell me why in a greenhouse, why this setting?

Teacher:
Well, these are the garden scenes. There are four or five gardens scenes to be at the shoot this weekend. And we came in this location and it's really cool. It's old. And it's got a really cool lighting. But this is the scene where Hamlet, well the scene we're doing tomorrow, this one leads into that and it's "to be, or not to be". But the big "to be or not to be" scene and "get thee to a nunnery" scene. And so that's all happening in the greenhouse. So it's a new way to do that scene. It's exciting.

Anthony Godfrey:
Well, I do love a Hamlet. I love Shakespeare. Ethan Hawke did a Shakespeare in Manhattan, the modern day, didn't he? And yeah, there are a lot of different adaptations. So I look forward to seeing yours.

Teacher:
Thank you.

Anthony Godfrey:
Thank you for being with us. When we come back, "To be or not to be, that is the question"< more on Bingham High's film adaptation of Hamlet and when you can see these students on the big screen.

Break:
If you're ready to start your child on the path to personalized learning, we are ready to help the Jordan Virtual Learning Academy. It's coming to Jordan School District in the 2021-22 school year. Three new schools will be opening as part of the Academy: Rocky Peak Virtual Elementary School, Kelsey Peak Virtual Middle School and Kings Peak High School. Each school will have their own principal and teachers, and each will give students a choice in their own learning. The schools will offer synchronous learning, which is teachers providing real time, live online instruction and asynchronous learning, where teachers provide videotape instruction for learning on a student's schedule. To register your student in the Jordan Virtual Learning Academy, visit http://connect.jordandistrict.org.

Anthony Godfrey:
All right. We're here with the young man playing Hamlet here in Bingham High School film production of the play. Tell me your name please.

Student:
Hi, I'm Jason Thompson.

Anthony Godfrey:
You auditioned for the part of Hamlet, of course. And are you excited to be doing it on film as opposed to stage?

Student:
Honestly, doing it in film, it's a new experience for me and for many of the other actors, and it's just, it's so cool. I've never had this experience and I'm having so much fun with it. And thank you to Mr. Purdy for setting this up, so we're able to do this. I am excited about it, yes.

Anthony Godfrey:
No, it was really clear that he was willing to take risks and do some maybe uncomfortable things, to be sure, that this worked out and that you had this opportunity. What does that mean to you to have him do that?

Student:
So he is a new teacher this year. So I haven't really known him for very long, but him being able to take risks for us to be able to pursue our passion in a time that is just kind of sucky. Like, it would be really hard for people to pursue art right now in the way that we portray it. Him going out there and saying that he is willing to take these risks and do these things. It just means a lot to me.

Anthony Godfrey:
I know the impact. I was in productions in high school and you make friends and you stay really close because you spent a lot of time together. Are you finding that with film production like you have with stage production?

Student:
Yeah, I would say so. There's some people that I have worked with before and making friends is part of the whole experience. And these people, we've just become closer and tighter as a group. And I'm so thankful for them as well.

Anthony Godfrey:
What is it about Hamlet that interests you as a character?

Student:
Ooh, it's really complicated. I've never played a crazy character and there's so many different details throughout the script that are really dynamic. He's just such a weird character. Learning how to do this character has been really tough.

Anthony Godfrey:
What is it that's challenging about the Shakespearian language?

Student:
Ooh, so it's an older dialect and that makes it harder because we don't normally speak that way and they use different words that we don't usually use. I was just going through my script yesterday finding the hard words and learning what they mean. I didn't know this before, but apparently, aught means anything at all because one of my lines is "No, not I. I never gave you aught". And what that's saying is no, I didn't ever give you anything.

Anthony Godfrey:
Does that mean that you kind of slipped into this now in common conversation and your mom might say you left all this on the floor and you say I left aught on the floor mother?

Student:
I can't say I've slipped into it, but it's definitely coming easier to me now.

Anthony Godfrey:
Okay. Well, I think, I think that might happen. I think you never know. You could start speaking in soliloquies. Maybe iambic pentameter will just become irresistible to you.

Student:
I'm excited for that. I think that'd be really funny.

Anthony Godfrey:
What does, what other involvement have you had in theater?

Student:
So I've been doing theater since 2013. I was 10 years old. That's a long time ago. I've done musicals all the way up and this is my first straight play. I've been in one acts and those aren't musicals, not usually, but doing a play is a different experience and doing it like this, it's an even different experience than I ever even imagined. But here at Bingham specifically, I've been in both musicals that have been done during my time here. So Singing in the Rain and Children of Eden. I've been in both of those. I've auditioned for the plays, but haven't made it in until this year and I'm Hamlet now. So that's pretty cool, I guess.

Anthony:
Hamlet is pretty cool. It's a big role. Do you feel the weight of responsibility to play Hamlet when so many greats have played him in the past?

Student:
Definitely.

Anthony Godfrey:
Not until I asked that question.

Student:
No, I really have. I've never been the main part, right? t's a huge responsibility and I want to take it. I want to make this play the best I can make it and do my part so that I can make my fellow actors look good. I don't want to be the reason that the whole show flops.

Anthony Godfrey:
Well, you make a good point that they call it the lead for a reason because the way that you devote yourself to it really will be reflected throughout the production.

Student:
Oh, how so. I would like to say that it's not going to be bad. It's going to be fantastic.

Anthony Godfrey:
I have no doubt that it will be fantastic. Well I just have a bit of advice. "To thine own self be true." I'm just saying that, you know. I heard that somewhere. Although you're used to musicals, this is at least lyrical.

Student:
Yeah. Oh, I have noticed that I've been. I be going through my lines and you know, with iambic pentameter, you can feel the beats in some of the lines. Sometimes you want to go with it, but other times you want to break it, you know, because you still want it to come out naturally. And sometimes iambic pentameter doesn't sound very natural.

Anthony Godfrey:
No, we can become a little sing songy, but anyone with a heartbeat can connect with iambic pentameter.

Anthony Godfrey:
Yeah. That is a good way to say it. Like you can connect to the lines easier. Let's Hear your "To be or not to be".

Student:
Okay. The pressure's on. "To be, or not to be? That is the question. Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune or to take arms against a sea of troubles and by opposing end to them."

Anthony Godfrey:
Oh, I think you sold me on "arms against a sea of troubles". I think that's what I'm going to go with. I like it. Hey, great job. It's great talking with you.

Student:
Thank you.

Anthony Godfrey:
If you would like to see Bingham High's Hamlet production, public screenings will be held on May 27th and May 28th at 7:00 PM in the Copper Pit at Bingham. Admission is free, but they will be asking for a $2 donation.

Thanks for joining us on the Supercast. Remember, education is the most important thing you'll do today. We'll see you out there.

Show Audio Transcription