Friday, March 17, 2017

National History Day Self Reflection

       For National History Day, my group made our project on Nelson Mandela, the first black president of South Africa. He stood for equal rights for both black and white people in his home country, seeing as people of color were widely considered the "dirty citizens." Here is a link to the information we put on our board.
       I like the way our board looked (probably because I did most of it.) Our papers were neatly backed, and we had a handful of good sized pictures. Our exhibit's background was neat, too, and I'm not just saying that because I painted it. It's neat, organized, and not too ugly.
       I'd say the most interesting thing I learned was that even though colored people were the natives of South Africa, they were still being discriminated. White people seem to leave a hate-fueled path everywhere. The Native Americans went through the same thing that the South African natives did, except the hatred towards South Africans subsided much later. It really caught my attention because we, as humans, are really, really sucky. Most of us hate people just because they've been more exposed to the sun.
       The hardest part of this project was doing the stupid bibliography. I've hated bibliographies in the past, but now, since I had to ANNOTATE THEM, I despise them. It's frustrating and time consuming and so EXTRA. It's like, okay, we used this website- now WHY did we use this website? Okay, we got facts from it. That's... it. We had to expand "we got facts from it" to four whole sentences. And I still barely understand primary and secondary sources. They're just... sources. Words and pictures. Big deal.
       I improved as a learner because this project showed me that sometimes, you really can have too much facts. We barely avoided the 500 word limit. I also learned all sorts of fancy project terms, and how to make it seem like I'm NOT stressing when really I have mascara and tears running down my face constantly. This project was very, very hard to do, and now that I'm done with it, a simple slideshow seems like child's play.
       Between now and History Day, I'd like to improve some of the things on our board. Our title is very crooked, and some of our placements are... questionable. I'm not saying our board is ugly, I'm just saying she has a few issues. We all have quirks.
       When it comes to this whole project, I'm proud of not just how hard my group worked, but how hard every group worked. We all made it through this. Everyone worked incredibly hard (with only a few distractions) and we're all done.
       Our project relates to the History Day theme (taking a stand in history) because Nelson Mandela stood for the rights of his people. We worked incredibly hard, and protested peacefully. He didn't bring out any weapons, and still managed to put an end to the hateful government. He's still an icon of peace, power, and inspiration.
       To future students that have to do this project, please don't mess around (too much.) You'll put your sanity and Mrs. Edlin's sanity at stake. And if you're doing am exhibit, don't buy a tiny, trashy board from Walmart the day you need to have your painted board at school. Don't follow in our footsteps.

Friday, September 30, 2016

Shakespeare Reflection

       When I'd first learned that we were doing a Shakespeare unit, I groaned and said, "Time to learn about an old dead guy that every teacher loves!" The first few days were terrifying. Words like thy or to't confused and angered me. But as the days went by, I gathered a love for the way that he wrote. Reading Taming of the Shrew really gave me an idea of what I was missing out on. With Mrs. Edlin's description,  I came to love and sympathize with the characters.
       Reading the book, I couldn't really tell if Kate was tamed or not. In my opinion, I feel like you can't really tame anyone. But she changed her view on things, and learned to accept and care. I feel like Petruchio and Kate loved each other in a way, but it was a damaged way. Their relationship wasn't really ideal (or "goals" as the cool kids say.) I don't want a partner that starves me or rips my clothes. Money is tight, dude, get your paws off.
      Learning about Shakespeare's First Folio really gave me an idea of what life was really like back then. Today, if someone buys a $200 book, it's treasured and cherished. Locked in a glass case, forbidden to be touched. Back then, they were written in, due to lack of paper. They were still loved; but today we have an abundance of paper, right at our fingertips. A luxury item then is basically a trash item now.
       Shakespearean insults are kind of not insulting. In their glory days, they were like any insult. Now, they're nonsense. Take clack dish, for example. If I screamed at someone calling them a clack dish, I'd be put in a straight jacket.
       Different people have different opinions. I feel like Shakespeare is still popular because his work is so heavily stereotyped. People mock, using thy and thoust as joke material, but Shakespeare's work is genius. He wrote so much in so little time, and I can't even text back. If you really try and understand what hes wrote, you can connect with the characters. Plus, it's fun to read out loud.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

2016-2017 First Blog Post

       Welcome to 2016! I'm older, wiser, and even more exhausted than before! I was told to set some goals (academic, personal, and improvement.) For an academic goal, I'd like to set the bar by saying I should read around 70 books this year. Last year, I read 65, and I did it easily. Maybe I can get a few more in before sweet release into summer.
       As for a personal goal, I'd like to not panic as much. My panic button has been getting more and more irritable, as for example, I almost broke down crying when I couldn't find my earbuds in my backpack. (Hint: they were under my pencils.) I know that's something that'll be pretty hard to work on, since I'm panicking writing this now. Oh, well, I'll try.
       I'm assuming improvement means something you'd live to improve on. Something I'd like to improve on? Well, there's a lot. Do we have a few more hours? One thing that I can gather is listening. I normally hear the big details, and then the rest is just white noise. I'm either doodling or spacing out. Maybe I won't get my goals done, or maybe I will. It's for me to decide.

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Westward Expansion

     Four our end of the year project, Mara and I decided to study the brick making ways of the Nauvoo people.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

6th Grade Independent Projects

      For my project, I decided to exoplanets. I chose this topic because, if you know me, I am the ultimate space fanatic. I enjoy the facts, the theories, and the simple assumptions. I love space. If I had to choose a high in my project, I'd pick the facts. I was able to find a nice collection of facts, and I was able to build the basics that everybody would understand. (I read two entire space encyclopedias. I knew a lot.) Some of the most interesting things that I learned include:

  • There is more stars in our small Milky Way galaxy than there is grains of sand on all the beaches on Earth. 
  • There is about 2108 exoplanets that we know of. About 21 of those could hold life. 21 new Earth-like planets that we haven't even seen!
      Space is super cool. But, if I could change my project, I would include more of the basics. I didn't really explain all the star types (Nobody knows what a red dwarf is....) or what a light-year is. But, I'm not going to lie, I loved doing this topic. I am a space fanatic.

Friday, February 26, 2016

Invent Iowa Reflections

      For our Invent Iowa project, Mara and I came up with Extendastrip. We decided we'd had enough of the problems caused by power strips, and we stepped forward and fixed them. I have a turtle tank and because my turtles needs her lights and filters, I need to plug in stuff. But we have to order special power strips in order to fit everything on there. So Mara and I fixed that by making Extendastrip... well, extendable. There's many pieces to plug together to create your own custom power strip. There's regular sockets, double sockets, and even sockets that fit phone charger USBs. I'm pretty satisfied on how the tri-fold turned out, but the thought process was painful. We went through so many ideas, we could fill up a notebook. (Not literally. Please don't make me do this again, Mrs. Edlin.) If I could modify my project, I'd probably fix up some of the confusing parts. I'd try and find a way that sounds more like me, and less like a 1980's blender commercial. For any future inventors, listen closely. If your trying to find a problem to solve, start big! Look of the world's problems. And then a continents. A country. A state or province. A town. A family. Your family. You! It doesn't have to be the perfect problem. Also, make sure you take your meds. I forgot to take mine one day, and let's just say that I was one step away from committing murder. Seriously. Also, don't stress! It gets so much easier if you don't freak out (Cough Mara Cough). I mean, it's not like it's the end of the whole entire world if it's not turning out. (What am I saying I cried for like two hours over this unit.)
      I'm just going to say it. I didn't like how this project turned out. Well, I never like anything I create with my human hands. Now lets imagine that my product is a real thing. Are you afraid that you might lose the pieces? Oh, well. You can purchase those in separate boxes. But the original box comes with some pieces, don't you worry my child. Worried you might trip over the cord? We made the cord flat, too, so you don't like... break your neck or something and sue us. (I have one penny to my name I must feed my children. Don't sue.) Worried your small precious child might hurt itself? Stop worrying about that, worry more about Donald Trump. But hey, it's for a good cause, this invention. So, that is all. Thank you for your time. 

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Comics, Cartoons, & Graphic Novels Final Project


        This is my comic! I honestly had no idea what I was going to do at first, but then the small idea of "person and cat" just popped into my head. While I was working on it, the idea came to me as I went. (I don't really like the final product but whatever.)

        The most important things my comic shows (that I learned) are emanata, expression (eyebrows!), and panels. Emanata, which is basically a comic's form of emoticons. They aren't emoticons like :-) , they're like little squiggles and the tornados above people's heads.  Eyebrows play a large part in showing expression as well. Their position and placement cam show how the said character's facial expression is doing it's thing. The different sizes of panels can divert your focus to what is happening. If the panels were the same size, all you would see is the panels around it. Sometimes, there's just one page panels which are trying to focus on a large idea. For example, on the panel with Charles' and Rat's faces, there's a little tornado above Rat's head. That shows that she's frustrated or angry.

        So, yeah. That's all I've got to say. This is it, I guess? (Sorry, I'm super awkward right now.)