Now that the Project Citizen presentations are over it is time to reflect on our experience. Here are some thoughts that students had:
What did our class do well--
ON THE VALUE OF RESEARCH AND DETAIL
"Our class provided plenty of research and detail on the imortant fact given. From our problem statement to action plan; we always had research backing (our position), which also limited questions from the panel"
"We researched ourproject well and didn't leave any part out. We even researched problems that might occur during our policy"
"We were able to back up all of our information with research and I think that made a huge difference"
ON THE VALUE OF BEING PREPARED
"All of our answers were very specific and did not leave anything left unanswered"
"In the beginning of practicing speeches, we weren't very good. Over time though, I thought we got better each time"
ON THE VALUE OF APPEARANCE
"Everyone was very serious about being on stage in front of important people"
Project Citizen is about the process and not the end result. What that means is the learning is never over. If a water policy would be enacted, then what? Does that mean that your job is done. As a citizen we all need to take the responsibility to make our communities better. It can be done through volunteering, but it can also be done at the local policy level. Project Citizen has hopefully taught the lessons of how to make real change in a community. Through organization, research, and knowledge ordinary citizens can make a huge difference. Another value that needs to be emphasized is persistence, because change usually takes time. How persistent are we? Will we use what was learned in Project Citizen to become more responsible citizens? Is the Project over?