Why Not to Stress Over Junior Portfolio


junior portfolio

Written by Leah Campano |

On March 20th, the Junior class will participate in The Morgan School’s first Junior Portfolio Exhibition. Juniors will present their work from their past two-and-half years at Morgan to a panel of three teachers from Morgan, Eliot, Pierson, and/or Joel.  It is no secret that juniors feel strongly about the Junior Portfolio.  It is to be expected since our class has been hit with a lot.  However, we are focusing on only the negatives of the exhibition and overlooking any positives the Junior Portfolio may offer.  The portfolio allows students to reflect on our strengths and weaknesses to see how we have grown as students over the years.  Also, since we want to graduate from high school, we must participate in and pass the Junior Portfolio – and graduating high school is always a good thing.  Junior Portfolio gives teachers from Joel, Pierson, and Eliot the opportunity to see what we achieved since kindergarten, 4th grade, or 8th grade.  After all, the portfolio is supposed to be a celebration of our hard work and achievements.  Additionally, the Junior Portfolio only marks the beginning of all the presentations we will have to conduct in college and in future careers.  The presentation offers good preparation.  So, instead of focusing on all the downfalls of the Junior Portfolio, try to start embracing all the positives of the exhibition.

The way you perceive the Junior Portfolio depends on attitude – the presentation is not something to stress over!  Teachers have given students plenty of assignments and rubrics to choose from.  I know I have a number of assignments that will make preparing for my presentation much easier.  During advisory, a checklist was distributed that allowed students to list the exact assignments they will use for each required rubric.  This should help in preparation. It is up to us juniors, as students, to ensure we have all rubrics needed in time for our panel presentation.  Make sure you are completely familiar with your assignments, and what you did well or not so well, so you can thoroughly explain your work.  The panel of teachers will most likely ask questions that involved the assignment you chose to represent a certain rubric.  Students are expected to present for about twenty minutes, so make sure you have plenty to talk about!  Since the portfolio is fast approaching, I asked a few students how they are preparing for the upcoming exhibition.

When asked, many nervously laughed and admitted they were not necessarily “preparing.”  However, most students have at least one assignment for each rubric, which is reassuring.  Kelsey Donaldson explained, “Whenever I got a rubric from a teacher, I brought it to my advisory so I could keep track of them all.  Then when it came time to choose assignments, I picked the ones I can talk most about.”  Even if students do not have all the rubrics, they seem to only be missing one or two, at the most.  “When completing the checklist, I realized I was missing one or two rubrics.  I then tracked down the teachers I believed had the best assignments I could use,” said Maxx Bugg.  Jenna Egan is focusing mostly on managing her time:  “I am really trying not to get stressed out about the Junior Portfolio, and am trying my best to manage my time efficiently.  I have all my rubrics so now I just have to figure out what I will say in my presentation.”

As learners, we have unquestionably grown since our first semester of freshman year.  The past two-and-half years have been filled with new people, teachers, and experiences.  A majority would say junior year is the most important of your high school career due to AP classes, SATs, ACTs, college searches, and the workload in school seems to increase in comparison to freshman and sophomore year.  It is important we take a moment to stop and reflect on all that we have accomplished in the past few years.  So on March 20th, come prepared to give a compelling Junior Portfolio presentation!

Click on the following to view previous articles about the Junior Portfolio:
PSAT and Junior Portfolio Support
There are Two Sides to Every Story: The Truth about the Junior Portfolio

Additional link to Advisory page:
Junior Portfolio Advisory Page