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Careers Project: "My Life Map"
Transcript of Careers Project: "My Life Map"
By Rima Moussalli
4:25am on May 8th, 1998 at the Civic Hospital in Ottawa. My parents are Kathleen Day and Elie Moussalli.
Fall 2001-02, age 3
First Dance Lessons
Ballet at the Canterbury community center... I wasn't very into it at the time and ended up trying different styles of dance there for the next two years..
My parents picked Nepean Corona School of Gymnastics. I continued gymnastics all the way until the end of grade 4.
Summer 2002, age 4
Fall 2002, age 4
Started half-day kindergarten at the Riverside Montessori School
Fall 2003, age 5
Started taking group classes at Music For Young Children
Fall 2004, age 6
Began taking classes at SFH Irish Dance Studio. After an extremely successful competition in March, I was hooked -- no more trying a new kind of dance every year!
March 1998, age 11 months
November 2006, age 8
I competed in groups and solos at the Eastern Canadian Irish Dance Championships (Oireachtas) in Ottawa -- this was my first major competition!
Summer 2007, age 9
Trip to Alberta
My family started by flying to Calgary and seeing the zoo, then rented spent close to two weeks touring the province. A few highlights were the dinosaur museum in Drumheller, the Banff hot springs, Fort Macleod, Fort Whoop-Up, the Bar U Ranch, Head Smashed in Buffalo Jump, Canmore, the world's largest fiberglass dinosaur, and many others.
Fall 2009, age 11
Hilson Avenue P.S.
For grade 6, my parents and I decided that I should try learning in a congregated gifted class. This meant changing schools and starting the year without knowing anyone. Later that year, we applied for me to transfer back to my old school, but the board wouldn't let me.
Fall 2010, age 12
When I continued to Fisher Park P.S. for grade 7 and 8, two major things happened:
- I took the city bus to school and generally became much more independent
- My perfectionism became excessive and sometimes extremely counterproductive
Spring 2011, age 12
Trip to Germany
A cousin of mine that lives in Germany was getting married, and my family went for the wedding. This was my first time in Europe and we also spent a week touring the Black Forest region. Some highlights were the world's largest cuckoo clock, the Porsche Museum, and lots and lots of schnitzel.
Summer 2011, age 13
OELC Leadership Camp
Winter 2011-12, age 13
High School Decisions
Auditioned and got accepted to the Canterbury High School Dance Program for grade 9. This was also my first encounter with ballet since I was 3 years old.
Fall 2012, age 14
Started grade 9 in the Canterbury High School dance program with no prior acquaintances.
Summer 2013, age 15
I finished my first year of high school successfully and happily. I made lots of new friends, but also managed to stay in touch with old ones. Over the past year, my dance knowledge and technique in all forms has improved considerably. I am currently looking forward to another even busier year.
Quit all non-dance activities
I stopped all sports, music, etc. inside and outside of school, and became busier than ever. My life became completely immersed in different forms of dance.
One month later, I got my first pair of shoes. I named them "GAK!" and wouldn't take them off.
The most important event of my life:
Started grade 1 at Bayview P.S.
Following a suggestion, I attended the Ontario Educational Leadership Centre's Athlectics camp. This was my first sleep away camp and I learned that I become 5 times more organized on my own.
Fall 2008, age 10
Fielding Drive P.S.
Bayview, my previous school, only went up to grade 4 and all the graduating students go to Fielding Drive, a nearby grade 5-8 school. Because I was still with the same group as before, this wasn't a significant change for me.
In these years of my life, I was learning new things every day - how to talk, interact, what foods I liked or disliked - I was just generally learning what happened in life.
Between the ages of 3 and 5, I was exploring what my body could do and learning how to use it; I tried a different kind of dance every year (ballet, jazz, tap) and my parents put me in gymnastics after I repeatedly found alternate uses for the swing set.
At the age of 6 years old, I was truly ready for serious learning. There had been a dramatic increase in control over my body, and I also started growing intellectually. Over the next five years, I learned to read, write, do math, and most importantly, I understood friendship and interaction with others.
At the time, going to "middle school" seemed like a big deal... an exciting one, though. It did mean quite a bit more independence, but I can see that it wasn't all that different.
Settling into the group I met in grade 6 was actually a longer process for me than it appeared. By the end of grade 8, I was completely attached and had to leave everyone. This wasn't pleasant, but it has taught me to be open to change; after all, I'm quite happy where I am now.