English Fiction over Fact Presentation

The final task in English this year was about fictional and factual writing, and the differences between the two. We were divided into 4 groups, and I was in a group with Kanna, Jinho and Vuka. Then we were to pitch a presentation on the question: ‘Fiction over Fact‘. We each picked a ‘lense’ or perspective to look at the question through. I picked ‘setting’, and my three team mates picked the topics creativityperspective &  characters. We made a presentation with an introduction slide, a conclusion and then one individual slide for each person. Our group read the book “A Long Walk to Water, written by Linda Sue Park.

Embeded below is my presentation:

I think the most important thing I learned from this assesment, is getting comfortable and feeling good on stage. I think that throughout my life I’ll have to do countless presentations and performances in front of an audience. And the only way to get good at it is to practice it, so therefor my experience from this presentation will be beneficial for me even long after I finish school.

Regarding the unit question, I value fictional writing over factual writing. This is because in fictional writing I feel that you can relate to the characters in the writing, and the addition of description in fictional writing gives me a deeper understanding of the historical context in the book. Also, I get a greater impression of the emotions of the people in the time that the book is based on.

English Poem Presentation

In English class we had a small task, which was to pick a poem or a part of a song to present to the class. We were to analyze the text and identify some literary devices used. We also picked a metaphorical image as well as discussed the overall tone of the text. I decided to present a piece of the song “Crooked Young” by Bring me the Horizon. Here’s my presentation:

Technology Unit Evaluation

In Technology class throughout this semester we’ve been working on a unit about Minecraft and collaborating  in groups of 4 to create a theme park. My group’s theme park were allotted the theme horror. Below is a short screencast of me touring the part of the theme park that I built, as well as explaining why I chose to include some things to fit our theme.

During the Investigation (the start) of the unit we wrote some Design Specifications, which we want our final product, the theme park, to meet. The design specifications were in three categories, namely Theme, General, Function, Quality and Aesthetics. Each category had three different specifications, one essential, one desirable and one must not specification. Our list of Design Specifications is as follows:

Theme: Our theme is Horror

  • essential: Our park must be scary
  • desirable: Our park should have darkness
  • must not: Our park must not be cute

General:

  • essential: Our park must be navigationable
  • desirable: Our park should have the most suited materials
  • must not: Our park must not have cliché elements

Function:

  • essential: Our park must frighten people.
  • desirable: Our park should have jump scares (pop-up scary things)
  • must not: Our park must not have completely different qualities of attractions

Quality:

  • essential: Our park must use dark blocks to show darkness
  • desirable: Our park should be built cooperatively by helping eachother with our parts
  • must not: Our park must not have misplaced materials in the wrong places

Aesthetics:

  • essential: Our park must be original
  • desirable: Our park should have aspects of our creation and none else’s
  • must not: Our park must not include direct elements from other parks.

These were my groups design specifications, and I’ve underlined the ones we didn’t meet in our final product. As you can see only one of the specifications is underlined, and it’s a desirable spec. So we met every spec but one, which I think means we made a pretty good theme park. The specification we didn’t meet states: “desirable: Our park should have jump scares (pop-up scary things)”. I think the reason we didn’t have that is partially because of technical difficulties. Making things that pop up automatically is advanced and quite time consuming . I spent time on other part of the park instead, since I think the other things (such as decoration, roads & my attractions) were more important to have in high quality. Other than that I think we did a good job on meeting our design specifications, since we met almost every single one.

In order to further check the quality of our theme park, we also devised five ‘tests’ for our theme park. I’ve listed them below, as well as the results from each test.

I could test my theme park by sending a survey to 10 7th graders with pictures of the theme park, asking them if they think it’s scary.

I’ve sent a survey, however we’ve recieved no answers from the 7th graders. Because of this, I also interviewed Ms Cofino and showed her a tour of our park. She said: “This definitely looks liks a horror park. I wouldn’t think it’s a fun park to be in. It looks really scary with the darkness and cobwebs.” So I’d say we succeeded with appealing to the adult range of our target audience. Our choice of decoration (cobwebs etc.) fit the theme, according to this feedback.

I could test my theme park by checking to see that all of the blocks used are appropriate  (Anything except for pink, purple, bright yellow) to the theme. 

Checked, and we pass this test. Because we didn’t use any inappropriate blocks. All our blocks fit our horror theme and they don’t

I could test my theme park by looking at our design brief and seeing if we built according to the map.

Looking back to our db, I would say that we did not build accordingly to the db, but we had good reasons for it. In our db we assumed the entrance to the park would be in the middle of one of the long sides, but this was not the case on the server. Our entrance on the server was placed in the top left corner, and so we had to move some of our attractions accordingly. Also, on the db we made a Fiery Dome, but when we were dividing the workload into our group we decided not to make a Fiery Dome, as that would be too much work on one of the members. Two of our team members could’ve worked together on it, but we felt like it wasn’t a big enough part of the park for us to spend time on that. We’d rather focus on the other attractions.

I could test my theme park by making sure we have not copied ideas from our sources of research by asking my group peer.

After checking my sources, I can say that we did not directly copy of off anything, it was all original ideas.

I could test my theme park by searching through it to see if we made any building errors by misplacing blocks.

We have not made any building errors with the blocks, and so we pass this test also.

Here are some possible improvements I’ve noticed from these tests. From the question on whether we built according to our db, I realized that when we were making our design brief we should’ve considered how long it would take to build our attractions, so that we could’ve avoided adding the Fiery Dome and then deciding not to include it because it would be too much for us to build. When making the design brief, we needed to think realistically about how much we are able to produce, so that we can follow the design brief when making the solution. Another thing we could’ve done is used a bigger variety of blocks as decorations. In my tunnel, I used a lot of monster heads (zombie, creeper) and cobwebs. We had cobwebs all throughout our theme park, but I didn’t see that many other scary decoration blocks. Things such as jack-o’-lanterns and bookshelves fit our theme and we should’ve used them as well as the other types for more variety of decoration.

Use of Design Cycle Evaluation

Investigation:

In the investigation part (the first part) of the design cycle we made two major things: A Design Brief and Design Specifications. In the Design Brief we wrote down things we needed to research, any questions we needed to investigate and how we plan to make our product (Theme Park). We also made a poster with information about what our park will be like. On the poster we wrote down our target audience (13 – 50), made a slogan for our park and made a small map of what the park might look like. There was also some other information on the design brief. In the Design Specification (showed above) we wrote down different qualities we wanted our finished park to have as well as 5 tests for the park after we finished it.

In the Investigation part of the unit, I think I could’ve improved on my team’s design brief. It looked pretty good, but the miniature map of our park on it, I feel, was sloppy and our park didn’t end up looking anything like it. I think just spending more time on making it realistic look like something we could actually make would’ve made the map much better. Here’s a picture of our design brief, although I’m not quite sure if you can see the small map. PIC OF DESIGN BRIEF HEEREREREREREERE

Design:

The major thing we did in the Design part of the unit was making three possible layout ideas for our theme park, and then choosing one final one to follow in the create section of the unit. We made three big drawing of possible layout, all of which should’ve been colored (but we didn’t color them). They were also generally sloppy looking, when it came to roads and such on the park. My group and I sort of fixed this by, after we had chosen our design, adding more details about materials and colors. We used a color coding for different blocks, and the final design looked good enough to follow when creating.

I feel like the biggest thing in the Design part that my group and I could’ve done better is putting more effort into the three first designs. If they were better done we would’ve gotten a better idea of the different designs. And then we might’ve chosen a better fitting design, since there would be more details to consider for us when choosing which drawing to select.

Plan:

In the plan part of the unit we did three things. First of all, everyone wrote down the steps to creating their attraction / part of the theme park. We then thought about what materials (block types) we will use and how much time it’ll take to build our part of the theme park. We then gave our plan to a random person in the class and they had to follow the plan. Then we saw what they had created with our plan, and if it was clear enough. Since I didn’t get any feedback back from my peer-assessors, I think I made a detailed and thorough plan. I didn’t include what my attraction was going to look like, but I linked the drawing we had made in the Design part. So that you can follow how I had drawn my attraction there.

This is a minor thing, but I could’ve done it in order to make my plan better. So, as mentioned above I linked my design brief in the plan. So that you can see how I drew my attraction in the design brief. I did this so I didn’t have to write down what it’s supposed to look like in the plan, since that would take a long time. But if I had more time on the Plan, I would’ve done this. Because by describing how it looks like in my plan, I’m adding more detail to my plan. That in turn makes my plan higher quality, so I could get a better grade. However I think that the plan I made is good enough for me to follow, so this would only be a minor improvement.

Create:

In the create part we spent 4 classes on just building our theme park in Minecraft. I think this was the most fun part of the unit, since we were just on minecraft the whole time.

An improvement for our park, would be to change the way our trees were made. We had cut them in half, because they were really tall and we couldn’t work as well.

2014-05-26_15.08.03

 But that looks really weird when you’re standing on top of the statue. All the trees are and you can see the roots. It looks unnatural and we should’ve changed it back. But if we were to change it back we’d have to do it manually. And we decided that it’s not worth the time doing it manually. So we didn’t change it, but if we did it would improve the overall experience of the theme park.

 

Petter och Hans Fyra Getter / Peter and his Four Goats

I have chosen a story called Petter och hans Fyra Getter, which means Petter and his four goats. It’s a Swedish story, here’s a link to the original story (in Swedish)

Here’s a list of the main plot points in the story:

  • Petter, his four goats and his cat Murke live in a cottage.
  • In the middle of a nearby forrest lies a huge rock. In the rock lives an evil troll called Skinnyleg.
  • Skinnyleg is always mad because he’s always hungry.
  • Skinnyleg eats Petter and his four goats
  • Murke and a neighbor, Zach ran to Skinnyleg and scared him so he fell of the mountain.
  • After he fell, Skinnyleg broke into a million pieces
  • Petter and his  escape Skinnyleg’s belly and go home, happily.

I think that the message of this story is that you shouldn’t harm others for your own gain. Skinnyleg could’ve eaten berries and roots instead, but he ate Petter and his goats because it was tastier. He shouldn’t’ve done that because he didn’t need to do it, and it harmed Petter and the goats.

This is a good story to make into a puppet show because the events are simple to articulate and we don’t need very complicated puppets to show it. I feel that it also has a moral that the kids we’ll be presenting to will understand and relate to, making it a good story. I think it’s a myth, because there are no ‘heroes’ in it but fictional, so it’s not a folkstory.

Child Labor: Yes or No?

Recently a very important trial took place, in which a conclusive decision whether child labor should be allowed or not was being taken. The trial started with a persuasive speech by the head attorney of the defense; Fred Ward. This was followed by an opposing speech by the head attorney of the prosecutors; Sir Jean Baptiste. Then it was the lawyers and witnesses turns. Fred Ward called upon one of his witnesses, Sir Erik. A factory owner in favor of child favor. Then it was Sir Jean’s turn. He summoned one of his witnesses and lawyers. After their show, Fred Ward called for his last witness, Emily, a girl who worked in a factory and her lawyer. Then the defense had no more witnesses, so Sir Jean’s last two witnesses appeared and spoke.

 An important argument against child labor came from Sir Jean, in his speech arguing against child labor he mentioned how child labor takes away the innocence and youth of children. “You have ruined a child’s childhood because they are working in factories and that’s not what I call a healthy childhood.“ – Sir Jean

Child workers don’t feel the freedom and lack of responsibility that’s unique to their time of childhood because they are employed at the factories.

Working girl in New England textile mill, 1910 (colorized)

Some other arguments against child labor include: High rates of sickness and lack of hygiene in factories. Insufficient food and/or not enough nutrition for the children. And also that the children are ill treated in the factories, by their superiors and sometimes even by fellow workers.

 

A memorable argument of defense presented was from Sir George, in his opening speech for child labor he  said: “If our country is changing, we need to work for it.”  This is about how the UK is currently in a revolution and the whole country needs to work in order for it to change. That includes children.

Some of these arguments were mentioned by the defense: Child labor is necessary for the UK as it drives the industrial revolution forward. Factories provide good food and a place to sleep for the children. Child labor gets children used to working and ready for being adults, when they will have to get a job.

The two sides can have such different points of view because, I think, the defense of the trial thought more about the country and it’s future. Rather than thinking about the children and their rights / lives. Since, as you noticed, most of the arguments against child labor focus on the children’s lives and making sure they are living well. Whilst most arguments for child labor focus on the growth and progress of the country. The defense gives a more nationalistic point of view and argument. Unlike the prosecutors, who think almost completely opposite, focusing more on the individual’s point of view.

 

Drama DIY Reflection

In drama we’ve done a Do It Yourself program with partners in which we demonstrate how to do something using informative speaking and time-order words.

JB and I’s DIY program:

7C Drama: DIY Programs0 from YIS Arts on Vimeo.

My best skill was appealing to my target audience. Our target audience was teenagers (13 – 19). We used language and spoke in such a way that teens do. In the beginning in stead of saying something like: “Hello, ladies and gentlemen”. I said: “Wassup guys”, which is a more informal greeting that a typical teen would use. I also think we appealed to our target audience in the way we dressed. We wore typical teenage clothes such as a beanie, a snap back and an “OBEY” jumper, which is a popular brand for teens. By using appropriate language and fitting clothes we appealed to our target audience well.

I should improve on my posture and body position. I think that whilst I’m talking it’s okay – I’m looking into the camera and using my body accordingly. But when my partner is speaking, I mostly looked at him instead of into the camera. This makes it look like I’m unprepared and relying on my partner for help. Instead of looking at my partner I should just be looking into the camera confidently whilst my partner is talking.

Another group which was captivating was Ayana, Saya and Eileen’s DIY Program:

7C Drama: DIY Programs3 from YIS Arts on Vimeo.

I liked their presentation because they were well prepared. They had the plain shoe as well as some shoes that were already designed so they could be used as examples. They had a paper on which they had practiced the designs as well as liquid white out to show the viewers how to erase if they make a mistake on the shoe.

PE Just Dance Unit Feedback

The feedback I received from Ms Hamada on my Just Dance performance mentioned a lot of things. My attitude and energy when I performed was at a high level, so that’s something I did well on. Something my partner and I could’ve done better on was the level of complexity and variety in the moves that we made ourselves. We also had too much repetition and not enough different moves. I agree with this and think that we should’ve thought of more moves and had more variety in our dance. I will remember this for our next dance unit so that my partner and I can do a better job with our dance next year.