Thursday, May 18, 2017

Images of Greatness Reflection

     My image of greatness was Mark Twain. I chose him because he had lots of success and came from a small town and didn't necessarily have a great start to life. I like how he overcame every single obstacle he faced, and he faced lots of them.

     The part of the unit that makes me most proud is how we all were super stressed and worried about the project, but we all came through and did a great job. It makes me proud to see that we are all proud of our projects and riddles.
     The most challenging part of the unit was all of it. It was all super hard, and it was challenging to think of creative ways to be different and unique. I think we all did a great job, but it for sure wasn't easy. I think the most challenging part was by far memorizing our bio riddles. They were hard enough to make, harder to memorize.
     I definitely grew as a person during this unit because I learned how to bring many parts of the same thing into one thing to finish it all up. Time management was also huge during this project, because we had a limited amount of time for each part of the project.
     I would improve my work on this project by making sure each part of my display was completely lined up. There were a few parts on my display that were off centered, but it still looks really nice in my opinion.
     The best part of the actual celebration was all presenting the riddles and taking a bow at the end. It felt really emotional to know that was the last final goal thing we'd be doing together, and it was really fun to me.

     My favorite educational part of the field trip was when we went to the art museum and learned a lot about what inspires artists for each individual piece, it's fascinating to me.
     I learned the most in the field trip when we watched the engineering movie. It taught about how engineers work and what they could do to help. I thought it was really cool how they could constantly help, no matter what they're doing or where they're helping.
     The most surprising part of the field trip was when I actually liked the art museum. I thought it was going to be bad (no offense). It was really entertaining and I learned a lot. It was frequently surprising to me how much I liked the art, and I didn't think I would.
     I'm going to talk about a piece that I had no clue why it was art. It was just a splash of yellow on a big blue canvas. I could make that, and I can't paint. Seriously, it was bad. I still don't understand why that existed.
     Of course we escaped our escape chamber, we had the best group by far. Not really, but we were good. We escaped because we worked together really well, and are all good problem solvers. I think the room was just suited for our talents.
     All of the trip was fun. Even the boring parts, but that's because we all were having so much fun. I don't think there was a specific moment where the trip peaked, it was all incredible.
     The best part about goal for me was the teamwork and problem solving skills involved. It's tons of fun, and the class really bonds. It's a fun experience and I know I'll never forget.
     To succeed in goal, you really just need to be a hard worker. Everyone has talents, it's just learning how to utilize them. Be nice to everyone, be understanding and you'll be fine.
     I would warn the future goal kids about the attack teacher ;)
     Future goal kids should be excited for everything in goal. It's tons of fun, even the independent projects. I don't like those at all, but it still seems to be fun.
     I will miss everything. I'm going to miss having fun in class, being stupid, and messing around with everyone, it was a great experience. I learned tons and will miss that forever. This was absolutely my favorite class. Thanks for a fantastic experience!

Monday, April 10, 2017

National History Day Reflection

     Our project was about the Gunpowder Plot and we talked about the main people involved, the actual plan to blow up the British Parliament in 1605. We also talked about the impact of the plot and what it contributes to modern day society. We chose a website to convey this information, because we thought that it would be the most expressive way to show what we learned, and because we had multiple topics that we felt all needed to be tied into one category.
     I agree with what the judges said about our project. They said that we used lots of good primary sources, which is something we definitely agree with. We tried really hard to incorporate good primary sources that complimented our facts and what we were telling, because we had to shorten some paragraphs up and figured that that was the best way to tell the rest of the story. They also said that we told history like a story, and that's how it should be told. I agree with that, I think we did a good job of doing that. I feel like we had a really well thought out project. We redid our website many times and made several edits to our paragraphs and I think that each thing got better every time.
     The most interesting about our research in my opinion was learning about the Monteagle Letter. It was really important to the plot, but really wasn't that big of a deal. It's hard to explain. The letter uncovered the plot, but it was definitely possible that something else could have happened and the plot could've been uncovered. This makes the letter unique, and probably one of the most important variables of the plot that really could've gone either way, whether it be the interpretation of the letter as a joke, or the letter not being sent at all.
     The hardest part of this project for me was definitely finding jobs for everyone to do. Most of us really didn't want to do the job we were assigned to, but had to do them anyways because they were important to our project and had to get done. Some things were researched but not necessary to our project, which kind of just felt like a waste of time. Once we had decided who was doing what, most things went smoothly except for a few debates over what should happen where.
     As a student, I know that I will never forget this project. It is probably the most pressured and most important project I've ever done, and to do well on it means the world to me. Lots of stress has been had over this project, but that's alright because I feel like that just teaches me how to manage my time more wisely and get a grip on what's really going on for future projects. I think for sure that this project taught me how to make incredible projects, and I think that's a skill that will always be handy, for school or work in the future.
     I really think we could improve our project by using more quotes and more dialogue, maybe more things that were supposed to happen but didn't fall through. Using quotes really makes a difference to me, because a quote can pretty much reveal all that a person has to offer. I think that knowing each conspirator on a level such as that one could for sure make a difference in how attached a judge or viewer feels to our website, which could make or break the next level of competition. I also feel that we could've maybe tried to explain our primary sources a bit better in our paragraphs just a bit better, but that's also what the interview is for, so I'm not too sure. That is a change I'd like to make if we had more words.
     I am definitely most proud of our finished product. Each and everything we created seemed rocky, like it would either roll downhill or stay firm. I just really wasn't sure. When we finished, it looked like everything just clicked and decided to work together to create in what my opinion is just a really solid website. It also makes me really proud that my search bar made the final cut, I feel that was a great innovation of our website and really made it shine. I'm half kidding about the search bar, but I really am proud of our teamwork even if it seemed like we were at each other's throats most of the time. I feel like that might've made us even a little closer, because none of us hate each other. Of course, I'm extremely proud that the judges decided that our website would be going through to State, and I hope that it can keep going and maybe even make it to Nationals.

Thursday, November 17, 2016

2016 Independent Project Reflection

     For my final independent project, I made another a prezi. This prezi was about genetic engineering, which is basically just altering the traits of living things.
     The thing I like most about this project is the unique way it flows. It's not really built to have you read off of the screen, but have the speaker do most of the talking. The screen still provides information, just support for what the speaker says.
     The hardest part of this project is probably gathering enough facts to make the project understandable. It's kind of complicated stuff, and creating a project that makes enough sense to enjoy was challenging.
     One thing I definitely improved on was my public speaking skills, and really just the ability to keep the audience entertained. A really hard thing to do is appeal to all people, even the ones that aren't interested about your topic. I've found over the years that a good way to do that is to make people laugh, which generally gets people paying attention.
     If I were redoing my whole entire project, I would definitely work on changing my wording on specific things, just to make the whole project easier to understand for the people that haven't necessarily heard about this topic or don't know very much about it.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Shakespeare Reflection

     This unit has definitely been my biggest change of feelings.  I used to think the Shakespeare was just an old bat who wrote books, but now I really do respect him. If I were to pick one part of the unit that changed my opinion, it would be the insults. I really started to think that he had a sense of humor, and that's what makes all the difference in writing for me.
     In The Taming of the Shrew, I think Kate was 'tamed'. I say that, because I think she really did learn what Petruchio was talking about, and I really do think that she learned how she was supposed to act and why, but I don't think that she will act accordingly. She was just doing it to get revenge on all of the people making fun of her, because she left Petruchio at the dinner just minutes before.
     Shakespeare's First Folio is incredibly important, not only because it's the first thing that has all of Shakespeare's plays in it, but because of how valuable it was back then, and has grown to be now. People were paying a very high price for plays at a time when being a play write wasn't a well respected profession. Shakespeare and his First Folio really just took that, and turned it into something very desirable.
     Shakespeare insults and deaths were probably one of the most fun things I've done. It really helps you grow confidence with his plays, because you've been them. You've been killed in the same way, maybe even more dramatic ways then the actual characters were. It's a great way to become comfortable with something, dying is.
     It's still important to learn Shakespeare 400 years after his death, because it's still so controversial. It's good to teach kids that you can have that much of an impact on this world, even 400 to however more many years it is until someone comes along and replaces his title (which is the best play write ever, by the way). Without learning some of the great things people have done in the past, how will we learn what great things are possible in the future?

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

2016-2017 1st Blog Post

     I really want to get straight A's all year again, hopefully just not cut it as close as last year. I want to have fun this school year, and do well in sports as well as how I treat others. I also want to contribute more in the classroom and things like that. I want to be the kid that others look up to and think of as a good role model, and someone that everyone can be friends with.
    For my behavior goal, I want to have the best behavior I possibly can this year, and I know I can do it.
     For an improvement goal, I would say I need to work on really understanding how things work, and not just following along and knowing how to do them. I feel like that's what separates some kids just based on their perspective on how things do work, and truly understanding them on a level deeper than the name.
     All three of those goals are incredibly important to do together, because they all flow together. Having all three really makes you a trusted person and an all around better person. They help you grow to learn about people, and more importantly, yourself.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Breakout Boxes

     Describing a Breakout Box is rather hard. Just kidding, I'd use one word. Stressful. These things are harder than trying to understand why the alphabet is in math. To actually describe what they are, they're a box that has several locks on it. There are clues hidden throughout the room, and you and your 'team' need to find them. I say 'team' because there are times people fight to get to the clues and open certain locks, but otherwise, you're a team.
     Some skills at least one person on your team will need to have are:

  • Being able to think outside the box
  • Wisdom
  • Intelligence
  • Creativity
  • Being able to keep your cool
You need all of these skills to work together. There are lots of things that are loose ends, but you can find if you use a little bit of imagination. You need wisdom and intelligence because sometimes a lock might be just a fact, or a riddle. The most important thing is to keep your cool. If you get overwhelmed by all of the information, you'll never finish in time.
     Designing a Breakout Box might sound easy, but it's not. You need to keep track of which clues go where, what your lock combinations are, and of course, making your box not too easy, but not too hard. If your box seems stretched to you, the others will never solve it.
     Some of the things that worked out pretty smoothly when the other group was trying to solve our box were that it was possible, and our clues felt just the right difficulty. Sure, some of them were tougher, but that was the way our box was designed. They also solved it in the end, so we knew we didn't make it that hard.
     One of our challenges was that one of our online sources was changed from how we found it. The other group still got to the site, but we were scared at first. We didn't have a backup, and as far as we knew there wasn't another site that had our answer. That was it for difficulties, but that was a pretty big one for us.
     I think a good Breakout Box would definitely be marine biology. It would be cool incorporating the water clues in on land. It would make for some interesting locks, and all of them would have to do with water things or fish.

Monday, May 16, 2016

Hannibal Reflection

     On this field trip, we learned a lot about Mark Twain, and reviewed some of the things we already knew. We also got the correct picture about what was described in some of his books, and his past life, his friends' past life, and where they lived. All of this was in Hannibal, Missouri. Mark lived there as a kid, so most of the town is dedicated to him. There are tons of shops, tours, and fun things all around the town. Mark Twain was one of the first American author to be respected for being one, and fused his own style with some of the many things he grew up around.
     In my opinion, the most educational part of the trip was the tour around his house and through the museum. There was tons of things written nearly everywhere, and I learned a lot about his childhood and the way he grew up. In addition to learning through reading, there were tons of visuals. There was his house, there was many of the things he grew up around. It really teaches you what it was like to be a child in the 1800s, and helps to compare what it was like then to what it was like now.
     The most fun part of the trip for me was definitely the caves. It was nice and cool in there, and the lighting wasn't too bright, but it wasn't dark either. We went through tons of cracks and crevices, and saw tons of the minerals in the cave. I can definitely see why kids played in there. It's a lot of fun. Just don't let the candle blow out. Not a good idea.
     I don't know if I would improve any of the things that go on during the trip. At least, I can't think of any. I do have a suggestion for the kids, and that's to bring money for the shops. It's a lot of fun going into the candy shop, going into the ice cream shop, and going into the gift shops. There's a lot to do, and a lot to spend money on. Overall though, I really enjoyed the trip.
     Doing research on Mark Twain before going to Hannibal definitely helped me out. I thought the guy was a basketball player. Granted, I don't watch basketball. But learning about him helped me understand where we were going and why. If I hadn't done my research, I probably would've had no idea what the Turtle Islands were all about and why they were so important. I also wound't have known about the caves and why they were such a big deal. It also gives you a lot of background information, so you can know what people there are talking about, even if you can understand it without knowing about his past. You also get to add on to your knowledge, which is always cool when you don't understand a part of something you learned.