Here is how fun TedX was!

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Allison Perilman, Staff Writer

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This year 20 middle school students (6th, 7th and 8th graders) from iUniversity Prep were selected to go to TEDxKids at the Southern Methodist University in Dallas, and I was one of the lucky students whose essay was selected and got the wonderful opportunity to attend. Hi I’m Allison Perilman and this is my experience at TedXkids. So, what is TEDx, well it is what some people know very well as TEDTalks, where many amazing, unique, and some famous people have talked about certain subjects that usually affect the person’s life and it also typically a problem that faces society as well.

    Here’s how the  day started off, I had woken up at 5 AM, and around 5:45 – 6, all of us were. Then I proceeded to get ready while chatting with some of my friends I would meet in person for the first time that day. Then before I knew it, I was in the car on my way to the SMU campus in Dallas. Of course we hit traffic almost immediately but we had actually made it to the McFarlin auditorium ( the place on campus where the event was being held at ) early, and I was mistaken for one of the highschooler’ who would be giving a TED talk. All I had to say was: “No, I’m 12 and in 7th grade, I just got here early.” After that they lead me up the steps and had me wait for everyone in the lobby, where I met some of my friends in person for the first time, but it was a bit inconvenient considering the fact that once all of the other teachers and students from University had arrived, we had to walk back down those big, long, rows of steps just to wait outside for anywhere to 45-85 minutes. But then I ended up meeting more of my friends and got to know them better, so that made the wait worth it. After we met our host, who was a Junior at a high school in Carrollton, she gave us some lanyards that had our names on it, then we were seated. The first thing that happened after being seated was an open mic, where many students sang, did a gymnastics trick, danced, told jokes, and dabbed. And looking back, I didn’t have enough courage to go up and sing, even though I was told by the other students I should. Then once they closed the open mic, we started listening to people give their TED talks.

    Then after listening to about 8 or so TED talks and listening to an orchestra play a narrated story ( it was kind of weird, but the music was nice ), we broke for lunch,  which they had provided and they had provided us with On The Border, and a picnic. Then we had some time to roam around, some things you could do were: Sign up to be a paid child lab rat ( do testing with UNT to see how healthy and unhealthy minds cause healthy and unhealthy bodies, do a study and then try to find a way to be more healthful physically and mentally ), test a speaking app, and the best speaker won a TED talk, talk to some of the speakers, go to open mic, or do what I did and walk around with your friends. Then it was back to the TED talks.

    Some interesting speakers during the last half was one who had to be there via video due to her job, I can’t completely remember but her job had something to do with space. Another one that I found interesting was an SMU student who gave a whole new perspective on respect. Another SMU student gave a TED talk, she was majoring in Supreme Justice and she gave us a talk about something extremely surprising knowing her major, when she got up on the stage after introducing herself she asked, “ How comfortable are you with your death? “ and talked about ways to be healthier to expand your lifespan. One that stuck with me was some guy whose name I can’t remember. He talked about: “ What do you want to be when you grow up ?” And told us that we can just use a word instead of answering with a profession, he talked about just being the person you want to be, and that’s who you should strive to be, and that growing up doesn’t just mean jobs.

    In conclusion it was such an amazing, inspirational, one of a kind experience. I never expected it to be as good as it was, I didn’t expect penguins, quail, and toy fire trucks on stage. I didn’t expect to have such a good time. I didn’t expect everyone’s essay to be sitting, hung up in a room in the McFarlin auditorium. And I would have never even come close to guessing I would walk out of there a new and better person.

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