13 Jun 2019

Mastering Fundamentals

Level 1 is called "Mastering Fundamentals": similar at the beginning of every path

Identical? As much as entering a river is for all of us. The river's water is no more the same and we are neither the same when entering yet another time.

Level 1 looked from the outside has 3 Projects.
1. Icebreaker - always the 1st (as Reflecting you path is always the last one)
2. Evaluation and Feedback (3 tasks)
3. Research and Present

Beside the Icebreaker and the Reflecting on your path, inside a Level the order is up to you.

Each time I read the projects, I find new information that was there but I did not notice. This morning I found on the Icebreaker Evaluation Form (called Resource) "as it is their first speech, best do not give notes only write observations on the margin."
All evaluation forms have on page 1 place for this three general comments:
  • You excelled at
  • You may want to work on
  • To challenge yourself

On page 2 there are skills with numbers and near them place to remarks (p3 explain the points)
As you see, we do look for Clarity of speech, Vocal Variety, Gestures, Eye Contact and Audience Awareness, plus for the Comfort level and Interest of the content. Almost the same points are present again and again, so with time we become more aware of them and our progress. After some projects, at the end of these points we find also 1 or 3 more "project specific" questions.

To reach a Level I have first to be inside my base camp then opened My Educational Transcript  and find the path I want to work on.

Each of us will find something different inside our Educational Transcript.
The 1st of January 2018 I found in mine :
These are my Active path (or projects) sorted by Date : I worked on Effective Coaching the longest, now I am on it's Level 4, Dynamic Leadership is my latest, I am still on Level 1. The other two are not path but projects I asked for and will have to tackle but wanted to know about. You can ask for Mentor Program after finished Level 2 and for the Distinguished Toastmaster project at the end of a second path.

Here are the path I have already completed, Open the Curriculum would let me read, save or repeat any project from them.
Sometimes, when on a level where I can not reach an Elective Project at higher level, going back to my old path, I find it waiting to be launched or reopened.

Here I am now at Level 1 of Dynamic Leadership I begun in December. I got the Icebreaker and I had occasion to present my research on Training: I just learned a lot from a book I found. The first time I had seen, indeed I do not have to do the Level 1 in order. Before I believed "no other way!"

For the ICEBREAKER : lot of good material and advices, even if for myself I do not like to "write it out" before rehearsing it. The speech or story has to be in spoken language, different from written language. I used to Record it each time and listen, record again, before writing it down.

Here are just a few informations, the manual is 18 pages long with the evaluation resource included.
One of my preferred Projects is the Evaluation and Feedback. As you see it is composed of two speech and one evaluation, each at another meeting. "Any speech of any style you want or need to give", getting a feedback. You, learning to listen to the Evaluator without arguing back.
Accepting feedback, with grace, even after 9 years is not easy for me, but last time I did it! 

All I wanted to say, remained in me. Processed it later. Discussed with someone else present. Then found other things I could have improve in the future too. And that was for another speech I had given the 1st of January. As I got used to repeat a speech often twice, and I like the improvement seen, probably I will find an occasion to deliver it. This time, "free" without telling base camp.

But for the second project we have to try to have the same evaluator, or bring the evaluation form to show what it was suggested we try to improve. I give the same speech improved, changed - as in the river and the men no more the same, but we are also allowed for those who prefer to give another speech, again any style or topic, as long as we try to incorporate at least one of the improvements suggested in it. And all improvements, we feel we need "evaluate your efforts yourself". 

For this Second Project, we have all this evaluations, plus of course we can Print the Project. When clicking on the Print, in my Safari (can be Chrome etc) another tab opens and I can go up and Save it. 

When I arrived the first time to the Evaluation and Feedback, I went to a club and explained "We do not have to wait till Pathways arrives to us, we can repeat speeches twice now, the way of Paths".

The Research and Present Project aim is to help us find a new topic of your next speeches, to learn different ways of research and how to use only part of it, different ways to present a topic.

While doing this project the for the Visionary communication path, I decided to discover more about Pathways in April last year, and at the same time about Transition periods, as I felt Toastmasters is in a huge transition process.

As was suggested, I Googled, discovered the wonderful book Managing Transitions by William Bridges and also interviewed George Marshal home, from London to California. He lead the first Pilot District's Guides.

Combining two topics, I learned long time ago, while doing my PhD, lead to an intersection where few go and where many questions are found. I was right. From then one, I never stopped working on the Pathways Transition Process and applying what I learned then.

To finish this post, here is at the bottom where we can "jump" and go directly to the page from which we can read, save, print any project. Called "your evaluation" is towards the end of any project.

Back to the Ice Breaker Project.
I opened the "project" manual.

Going up, we find Save as... or Save as PDF (did not yet discover if there is a difference between them). At the same menu is Print - but you do not have to print it then and there, you can just save any project put them in a folder you will find them when need to read again.

Send it, print it, as any other file.

Here are what I found about the Level 1 projects. Of course, it would be a lot to say! It is one of my preferred Level! And no one tells you not to repeat, as some love to do with CC (no more me now) again and again. True, you do not get a point for the club by repeating a level you already completed from a Path, but later, another path will arrive and it will be there for you or, you do it "free" for pleasure or to learn better a subject or rehearse a speech.

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