Sing Your Heart Out

Daily Prompt: Alma Mater
by michelle w. on April 7, 2013

You’ve been asked to speak at your high school alma mater — about the path of life. (Whoa.) Draft the speech.

For the first time since I joined WordPress I must admit to feeling a little bit left out this fine sunny Sunday afternoon. We don’t do High School here in the UK and I am going to have to look up Alma mater because we sure as hell don’t do them either.

( Pause for a moment Dear Reader, whilst I Google the phrase Alma Mater)

OK, according to those very clever folks at Merriam Webster this is the answer:

1: a school, college, or university which one has attended or from which one has graduated

2: the song or hymn of a school, college, or university

Here in the UK we would call this a Secondary School and refer to it as ‘the one I used to go to’, just so as you know 😉 and the song…well I don’t know a Secondary School with it’s own song so I have no idea there. I am sure some of the ‘better orf’ (Imagine the Queen saying it!) schools like Eton have songs but as I am from Irish working class roots I would not be able to comment there.

Now that I am up to speed my only choice is this. Do I write a speech about the Path of Life or get really creative and head of to a Secondary School with a Song about the Path of life, killing two birds with one stone.?

As I write, and this is my style it seems thus far, the ‘make shit up as you go without really thinking it through style’, I am inclined to postulate, in a somewhat inspired in the moment kind of way, that my proposal would look something like this.

I turn up to the school two days prior to the event at which the speech is to be given. I work with all of the students who are about to Graduate or move on up to the next opportunity, be it work, education.

I bring my Guitar and some percussion items and I tell them about the Axis of Awesome.
(See Below…the rest of the Blog without the video does not work..YOU MUST WATCH IT)

Then, using their own words, which we would create in a free writing workshop, using Rap, Poetry and written texts, we would create a School Anthem, which  at it’s heart contained lessons for the path of life and because the words would be theirs it would carry more meaning and hope for them as they stepped forward into a future I will never know.

One thing I have learned from raising three children of my own to Adulthood is that young people are Awesome. I would through the workshops aim to help them find their voices both literally and metaphorically. We would have a wonderfully deep and profound two days.

Better than some old fart who has been there (where?) and done that (what?) offering them a bunch of platitudes about …well you know.

So we’d meet up for the Graduation and I would approach the lectern, suitably attired in my best worsted jacket with leather elbow patches, glasses perched on the tip of my nose and a baton in my hand disguised as a prompter.

I would cough twice and tap the lectern, which would be our pre-arranged signal to break into song, accompanied by already strategically positioned musicians.

It would hopefully sound something like this (Not mine unfortunately but what I would hope for)  and they would ‘Sing Their Hearts Out’

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. Daily Prompt: Alma Mater « Mama Bear Musings
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  6. Daily Prompt: Alma Mater | JUkk
  7. The Value of Education | Eyes Through The Glass – A Blog About Asperger’s
  8. THINK! | The Jittery Goat
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  11. Daily Prompt: Alma Mater | melodic feels
  12. Daily Prompt: Alma Mater | Chronicles of an Anglo Swiss
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13 thoughts on “Sing Your Heart Out

  1. angloswiss says:

    I had a bit of the same problem, growing up in London. We just had infants, primary and grammar school and that was that. I would definitely listen to that speech – I like the style very much. (By the way did I read that you are a drummer – my husband plays drums since his teenage years and still plays in a golden oldie jazz group – bebop etc.)

    • paulscribbles says:

      Thanks. I am a drummer but of the African Variety so I use my hands and not sticks and I actually work with school children as a musician on a regular basis, well it was regular until the current Govt got involved 😉

  2. Mr. Atheist says:

    Love the “four chords”. Hilarious. I guess they don’t mind being the ‘stralian Jack Black band called Tenacious D – with an extra person.

    USC is not far from where I call home. It’s funny, the juxtaposition of the “guitar” and “piano” with the idea of the actual location of the school itself. It is an a very poor part of town and a part of town that makes the dodgiest sections of London seem tame. I chuckled, for all the wrong reasons, but liked the message nonetheless.

    As always, thank you for sharing and I wish I was sitting in that audience when you gave that speech…

  3. arnoldnuremberg says:

    Thanks for looking up the word “alma mater” with the second meaning of a school song or hymn, which I was not aware of. Good success with your fine idea of a workshop “Sing your heart out”

    • paulscribbles says:

      Hey…it needed looking up…as for the idea, it was really just a piece of creative thinking about a situation I am unlikely to find myself in…but if I do then I am well prepared. Thanks for dropping by.

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