I have been a student at The Glen for nine years. As far as schooling goes, the Glen has been all I’ve known. I have many memories of snowball dances, field trips, and lessons from teachers. However, our 2023 trip to New York City was a memory I will never forget.
The Montessori Model United Nations (MMUN) is an awesome experience. I learned many things from it that I will take with me into the future. MMUN taught me that it’s important to speak out and make myself heard, work very hard to achieve my goals, and how to be a strong leader. I will continue to do this later in life because that will help me accomplish my goals.
I was excited about MMUN 2022 after doing an in-school mock MMUN in 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. I had no idea how many twists and turns would be thrown my way. I knew that I had to work really hard to know a lot about both my topic and my partner’s topic as part of our preparation. Since I was in fifth grade and he was in fourth grade, I did most of the work because I had more experience. It turned out that my partner was unable to attend, and I was going to have to present BOTH of our topics. As if having to do two speeches wasn’t enough, when we arrived at our conference room, we realized that our committee was combined with middle schoolers, which NEVER happens. Except this time, of course, when I had two speeches to give! The middle schoolers – who looked like high schoolers to me – made me feel really young and really nervous. Because of that, I sped through both my speeches, and probably no one understood a word I said. I was too nervous to participate in the discussion with the older students. And even when I did say something, it seemed like they were ignoring me because I was younger. But I did listen and watched everything going on around me. I learned that it was important to talk, speak out and make myself heard, even when it was very uncomfortable. It turned out that having this difficult experience prepared me even better for this year.
This year’s MMUN (2023), I felt ready, and I had a goal in mind. After last year, I knew I wanted to be elected by the other delegates to speak at the United Nations General Assembly. I also knew I had A LOT of work to do. As a sixth year, we support our 4th-grade partner by extensively researching and writing about both of our topics. Preparing for the conference was a long process, but I felt way more confident because I had been doing it for two years.
When I walked into the committee room this year, I was super excited and not as nervous as the previous year. The speech was still nerve-racking (I really don’t like giving speeches!), but this time, I was more confident, and I knew that I had to slow down so everyone could understand my solutions for the resolutions we would write together. The hard part was over.
My prior experience gave me confidence, and everyone saw me as a leader because I knew how to make sure that everyone was included and had a voice. I remembered how awkward I felt being one of the youngest people in the room, so I listened to the younger students and worked with them to help them understand what we were doing. I made sure that everyone understood what our topics were, and I encouraged everyone to participate.
So that all went well, but I still had my personal goal – to be chosen to speak at the General Assembly. The other delegates in the committee session vote to elect a speaker at the very end of the second day. I was super nervous when we were doing the votes, and to me, this was the most suspenseful day ever. I would have two chances to get elected, once for each topic. As I sat, hopeful and nervous, I listened to the names elected for the first topic – but I didn’t hear mine. I wasn’t elected. My stomach sank with sadness, and hopelessness overtook me. It was hard to hear what was going on around me, but then I realized the bureau was now announcing the speaker for the next topic. With my last glimmer of hope, I listened again for my name – and I heard it! I was elated! I stood up, looked at my friends and my teacher, and I thought to myself, “I did it.”
When I got elected, I was very excited. I knew this meant that I would be able to speak at the General Assembly in the United Nations. When we got to the United Nations, it was starting to hit me that I would be talking where world leaders speak! That made me even more excited and nervous. When it was finally our turn to go on stage, I was extremely excited that not only was I going to be talking in the General Assembly, but I had achieved my goal, and that made me feel so proud of myself.