Sophomores perform in Agents of Change festival


Credit: Isabel Gitten

Sophomores in history teacher David Gavron’s Old World and New World classes recently participated in the annual Agents of Change festival.

Emma Diianni and Caroline Lampert

Every spring, students from history teacher David Gavron’s sophomore classes participate in the annual Agents of Change Festival. After conducting extensive research on a historical figure, students present their studies to parents in an interactive format where they are interviewed as if they were the person they researched.

The idea to start this festival came from Gavron’s past experience with the program at another school.

“This project was done about 15 or 20 years ago when I taught at Masconomet Regional High School,” Gavron said. “When I was lucky enough to come to Wayland I asked if we could start it up again, and really it’s just an opportunity for students to [get to] know someone historically or some idea in a historical context and then be able to make that person or idea come alive for a couple of hours.”

Gavron believes one of the biggest benefits of the event is that it forces students to interact with others.

“Students have to get over the fear [of talking] to people,” Gavron said. “Some of them don’t want to do it at first, but once they are [at the festival] it becomes fun and they get great feedback.”

Even though it’s challenging for some students, the end result can be very rewarding.

“The fun part is watching how the students really become someone other than themselves and how they embrace the opportunity to become someone else,” Gavron said.

Before the actual event begins, there is a lot of preparation and planning that goes into the festival. Sophomore Jack Wuerfl, one of Gavron’s students, explained how he prepared for his presentation.

“I read over the questions we were going to be asked [beforehand],” Wuerfl said.

Sophomore Makayla George had already written a paper on her historical figure, so she believed she was well-prepared to answer the questions.

“We wrote a paper before [the festival] that basically made it easy for us [to present] because we already did all of the research and knew a lot of information for the event,” George said.

Despite thorough preparation, many students still faced challenges with their topics on presentation day. Sophomore Mason Bolivar recalled that the most challenging part for him was remembering all of the dates.

Other students faced challenges with their interviews.

“The questions that [I] wasn’t expecting [were the most challenging]; [I] just had to guess,” sophomore Isabella Arenas said.

Despite the obstacles, most agreed that the project was a fun one and that they had a lot of good experiences on festival day.

“[The most fun part was] coming here and seeing everyone get dressed up and just talking to people and seeing parents I haven’t seen in a while,” Wuerfl said. “Some of [the presentations] were really funny.”