Alex’s Blog

Yee Haw

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Weekly Reflection: Week 2

Hello all, welcome back to the second addition of my weekly reflections. Overall this week was pretty decent. A highlight of my week included my cousins birthday (shoutout Lucas), during his birthday dinner my other cousin and I discussed school and the subject of humanities came up, I may or may not have complained about my humanities class more specifically the commonlit assignments we have been assigned recently, I made a point about how there can rarely be right answers about interpreting texts so my cousin said something along the lines of “I don’t want you to get in trouble with your teacher, but, you should really read ‘The Death of The Author’ by Roland Barthes” I in fact did not read it because I couldn’t find a free version on the internet but I did read a few synopsis’. 

 

In short, “The Death of The Author” argues against in discerning objective meanings and purposes of any text, taking into account an author’s perspective and biases usually provides an insight to the purpose and meaning of texts, or text can be used to determine an author’s perspective on life or it’s issues, Barthes argues against this citing that acknowledging an author’s perspective limits the amount of interpretations. individuals can make for themselves. Acknowledging an author’s own interpretation of their text defeats the purpose of most literature, the lessons and meaning of literature should be determined by the reader. Obviously there are some flaws to these arguments, perhaps an argument can be made that readers should learn how to interpret an author’s message before finding their own but I think that’s pointless because you will get the end result either way and I believe most PLP students are able to find their own meaningful connections with text. This is why I think commonlit is pointless for the most part and shouldn’t contribute to any of the PLP students’ grades, because we are learning how to identify an author’s meaning and message, not our own, although learning how to identify themes is good mostly. 

 

That was a large tangent, bringing it back to school overall, I think I had some ups and downs with most classes but I am doing better everyday and that’s great but I can still do better with keeping up with physics homework and work experience. As you can tell I’ve mostly been thinking about humanities this week but I expect next week will have more than just one connection about my learning.

 

As always thanks for reading and have a great rest of your day/evening. 

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Deep Cove Historical Walking Tour: Project Reflection

Welcome back to my blog, today I’ll be reflecting on the first PLP project of 2020, the Deep Cove Historical Walking Tour. For this project the PLP 11/12 cohort revamped and expanded the Deep Cove Historical Walking Tour that was made by the Deep Cove Heritage Society (even though it was already amazing). Our final products were a custom google map and regular map to guide people through the tour. We also each created a video pitching our historical marker location to the Deep Cove Heritage Society, all the products are linked for where they are mentioned.

I was blessed with having Mt Seymour as my historical marker which is a place im very fond of so it definitely added a lot of interest for this project, honestly I sort of wished I could’ve had a partner for this (and more space in the pamphlet) because Seymour was such an interesting and important place to cover. I still got through it and honestly I think this project had some of my best work, I have had better final products before, but I think this is the project where I consistently showed good work throughout its entirety. I really tried my best this project to go that extra mile and I did in some regards but there a few things I could’ve done better; I could’ve contacted Alison (the owner of Seymour) sooner, I could’ve done a better video pitch of my location, and I could’ve worded my blurb for the google map a bit better too. I was compliant for those aspects, I won’t be that way for the next project. 

 

Overall I am genuinely proud of my work on this project, I still have a ways to go before I am actually consistently producing my absolute best work but I think this was a great start, I will keep on moving forward in a positive direction. I also only handed in 1 and a half assignments in late (if you count the video but I still blame the lateness on my old computer and crappy internet) I think this is worth noting because I don’t think I have ever been that consistent with every single stepping stone and milestone before (that’s what I call real character development)

 

As always thanks for reading and have a great rest of your day/evening.

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Weekly Reflection: Week one

Hello all, it’s been a while. Welcome back to my blog, today marks the first day/post of my weekly reflections. This week has been a low point for the quarter, despite starting off the week really strong with getting a 93 on my physics test and wrapping up my last project in humanities fairly strong (with the exception of having trouble exporting the walking tour video, butI blame that on my old laptop and crappy internet), the switching of schedules really messed me up. Starting off the first day after the switch I was embarrassingly late for humanities, then I proceeded to struggle with some of physics as well as forget to do something for work experience. The last two days of the week were fairly miserable and embarrassing in my opinion.

 

I had just started to really get into better habits before the switch and I let myself slip because subconsciously I don’t do that well with change. It’s not even a big change too which has gotten me more disappointed with myself, it was just a simple change in my schedule that I let snowball. It’s not even just my habits with school either, I didn’t exercise Thursday, Friday, or Sunday, and I even forgot to floss on those days also. At the end of the day though, none of that particularly matters (well maybe if it affects my grades) what does is determining the lesson can I take away from all of this. 

 

To relate this to something outside of school, I went to wild play with my mom and some friends, my friend who organized it decided that it was a good idea to sign us up for the hardest course, once I got to the top I realize that it was incredibly scary, but I decided that since I was there already I may as well do it, and get some exercise and have some fun and just do it rather than let my fear of failure make go down. I aim to take that same concept into next week because I have been for the majority of the quarter. I know that I’ve slipped up like I have this week and let it snowball way more in the past, despite being capable of stopping it whenever I wanted, so what makes this upcoming week any different than others in the past? I honestly don’t know, maybe I’ll have an answer as to why I did so great next week, after next week. 

 

All in all I just need to fall back into the good habits that I was practicing earlier this quarter, I’ve done it before and I’ll do it again. See you next week!

p.s expect to see posts relating to things other than school in the near future!

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Podcast Number 1

Hello all, welcome back to my blog, I’m back here for the third blog of 2020 (I still don’t know how to start these off right), anyways it’s been another unit for the sorta PLP Cohort and I, this time not tasked with making a video or play, instead we stripped both of those down into what’s known as a podcast, our podcast had to provide an answer for our driving question which was “How did the lives & conditions change and stay the same for Canadians after WW2?” We were split up into partners (my partner was Caleb) and we then each modified the driving question to fit a specific group of people, Caleb and I turned our question into “How the lives and conditions have changed for Canadian Veterans after WW2?” In short, I think this project went well for me and you can listen to our finished podcast on Soundcloud right here

 

Up above I said that in short that this project went well for me, I do think that, but this project was far from perfect, and I’d say the biggest challenge for Caleb and I in this project was trying to get an Interviewee for our podcast, unfortunately neither of our potential interviewees ever responded to us. This was a huge setback for us but we made the most of it, we chose to speak about an interview that occured between a veteran named Brock and our Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, we actually reached out to Brock for an interview, although as I mentioned earlier he never responded. 

 

The biggest upside for this project was the amount of work I put in for once, I actually read and genuinely enjoyed the book that we studied for this project, and this project was probably my best in terms of keeping up with due dates up until the end portion of it, sadly. I think that the real product of this project wasn’t the main goal for me this time around, I tried my best to take all the steps for this project, but at the end I seemed to run out of gas. The final week of this project was very hectic, and I managed to contract the flu for the last two days of it, which were also the last two days before spring break. I was genuinely out of commision for about 4 days but when I could finally work again I didn’t bother doing the final two assignments of this project (those being, the literary response for “The Absolutely True Diary of A Part-Time Indian” and this blog that you are reading now). Perhaps it was the social pressure of the oncoming Covid “pandemic” or maybe it was me just lashing out at that fact I really didn’t get to go outside this entire break because I could’ve of had Covid I know that was the right thing to do and I don’t think I regret that in the grand scheme of things, but I do regret what I chose to spend my time doing during this spring break, which was quite frankly nothing of use. I had plenty of things I could have done but didn’t so I am going to try my best moving forward so that the pro-activeness I started to practice with this project continues.

 

Overall this project, to me, felt like another sort of large step in the right direction. I hope to continue this trend, as we explore the wonders of Online schooling, which I’m sure any teacher reading this is pretty worried about, for me (that’s a joke for legal reasons).

 

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Poetry Post (6 months later)

Hello all, welcome back to another blog, today’s topic is the poetry unit that the PLP cohort and I embarked on in October of this year. I have never really been a fan of most traditional poems, and I can say this unit has sort of changed my opinion on it. For this unit we had to answer our driving question of “How does our understanding of text help us understand and idea” in this situation, the word “text” referred to poetry, the class was put into groups and we answered a modified version of this question in a presentation that showcased our understanding of historical perspective. Our groups modified this question to fit our topic, my group (consisting of Caleb, Izzy, and Ruby)  modified it to “how does our understanding of text help us understand gender acceptance over time” we presented 4 different poems and each of us analyzed and broke down our interpretations of them, mine was “The manly Man” by Francis Duggan.

 

This unit we learned about different types of strutted and unstructured poetry but more importantly we learned how to understand the many ideas that poems portray. Coming into this unit I thought poetry of nothing more than “fancy words” and this has been one of the few units that has changed my opinion on a topic. Since this unit I’ve been drawn towards more Philosophical poetry as I am very interested on how other people perceive the world, I think that played into this unit nicely because one of the main themes was historical perspective.

The biggest challenge in this project for me was getting over my preconceptions of poetry, there was no real “method” on how I overcame this as it was more of a conscious dilemma. Needless to say I did get over it and I think that my presentation went pretty well, another challenge would be handing in the more minor milestones during this project, including this blog post. I can’t honestly recall all the details of this unit as I am writing this 3 months after the project ended (I genuinely did think I had already written this post but in reality, I had written 173 words). The biggest success for this project was probably our final presentation, I have never been scared of public speaking and I have always been fairly decent at it, i was also pretty confident with my own and the rest of my groups analysis of the poems.

Overall this unit wasn’t my strongest but also not my weakest this year, I am happy that it got me into poetry. Moving forward, I know that I need to focus more on the little things, I do think that I am getting better but I’m no where near where I could be at currently, with all that being said, it is time for this post to come to a close, as always thanks for reading and have a great rest of your day/evening.

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Romeo & Juliet (yay)

New unit, new blog, you already know how this goes, this time around myself and the rest of the PLP 10 “class” were tasked with studying Shakespeare’s ‘Romeo and Juliet” and then presenting a one man/women parody of a Romeo and Juliet scene to show the timeless nature of said play. I wasn’t a huge fan of any of shakespeare’s works going into this project, and I’m happy to say that my opinion hasn’t really changed, on the other hand, I enjoyed this project a lot and I think this is probably the project I’ve done the best on this year (although that isn’t saying much)

You can watch the final presentation here:

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We started this unit off with making paragraphs about why we study shakespeare, after that we got to watch 2 film versions of Romeo and Juliet which were very funny, along with that we read the play as well, during that time we made TWIL blog posts, which I did not enjoy, you will be astounded with how hard it is to find those TWIL posts on my blog. Those TWIL posts were definitely the lowest point for me in this project as I did not do them. After the TWIL posts we made an essay answering some sort of driving question about Romeo and Juliet, my question was “Harold Bloom (a Shakespearean scholar) describes the play as ‘a vision of an uncompromising mutual love that perishes of its own idealism and intensity’. Explain the accuracy of this statement” overall, I think my essay definitely could’ve been a lot better given more time but it came out alright.

 

For the final stretch of the project we had to write and present our parodys, my little “twist” on the play was just making all the characters sock puppets and stupid. I think as a parody this worked really well because it was a lot easier to portray the flaws of characters like Romeo through comedic fashion. I also think it answered the driving question well enough and most of all this project has been a big improvement from most of the other ones this year, I still have the same problems and I feel as if I have been repeating myself in these blog posts, but ultimately I believe this project was an improvement. So with all that being said, as always, thanks for reading and have a good rest of your day/evening.

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WW2 And Books, And Also Movie Trailers.

Another blog post, another unit with PLP, grab some popcorn because this ones about the WW2 trailer unit, for this unit our class was divided into groups and tasked with making a trailer for a book about WW2, my group consisted of Jordyn, Anika, and Caleb, our book was Salt to The Sea, by Ruta Sepetys, you can watch the trailer we made in all its glory right here .

This unit has probably been my favourite so far this year, I love to make videos in my free time so the video making that portion of this project was a lot of fun for me. Bringing a book to life was cool, and it’s definitely something I’d love to do again with more resources/time. Actually learning about WW2 was also pretty cool, having Caleb in my group was especially awesome this unit as he is pretty much a walking encyclopedia on anything Army related. 

The biggest challenge I had with this project, was the same one as I do with most, my work habits, breaking these habits this year is proving to be a lot more tough than it seems on the surface, for example, I missed a filming day with my group because I slept in and the amount of work I put into the “little parts” of this project proves that this is a major problem for me furthermore. I’m not sure if this project was an improvement or not, on one hand I think the actual trailer was quite decent (other than exporting in 360p) as well as the amount of information I did actually retain, but on the other hand I didn’t hand in most of the milestones and I’m getting this post in late, after writing that out I’m pretty sure the cons outweigh the pros in this scenario, better late then never though.

Overall I really loved this unit and I wish I put more into it, I know I’m capable of doing much better than I’ve been doing in this class recently and I’m looking forward to proving that, so as always thanks for reading and have a great day/evening.

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Totally Tubular Totalitarianism

Ah yes, another year, another unit, another blog, welcome back to the first addition to my blog in 2019, the PLP cohort started this year off with a unit on the interwar years and how to make a perfect essay. More importantly we started this year off with a new driving question, “What Makes an Historical Event Significant” I answer a modified version of this question in my essay which, if you wish, you can read right here.

This unit started off quite rocky for me I went away for 9 days on the first week of school, and it kept me behind for the majority of this project. We started by researching our topic, mine being the rise of totalitarianism in japan, we were then tasked with writing annotated bibliographies which was my least favourite part of this project. After that we began writing our essays, we made a total of 3 drafts and I’m pretty happy with how mine turned out. Although I wish I could of handed in everything on time.

Learning about the Showa era, was cool because I got to learn more about how Japanese culture has developed over the years, and if I ever get the chance to learn about the history of Japan after WWII I will be very excited. I’ve been interested in Japans history ever since I saw “The History Of Japan” on YouTube, which was a viral video that briefly explained Japans history, it barely mentioned the Showa era, so this unit gave me a chance to fill in some gaps of my understanding of Japans history. This unit also gave me a chance to see how much better life has become for most people around the world, the amount of war crimes Japan committed in the 1930’s are relatively unspoken about now and it really gave me some depth to my perspective on life as a whole.

Overall this unit was pretty 2 dimensional but it was really cool to be able to practice making a perfect essay and I know that will help me out a lot throughout the rest of my schooling, also learning about Japan’s history was also a lot of fun, the Japanese culture really interests me and this unit gave me a deeper understanding of Japan’s history.

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Tpol, am I ready for next year?

Ok so, an entire year in review I’m gonna be using the exact same formula as I did for my mpols, I sure do love creativity for my reflections, sarcasm aside, in short this wasn’t a good year but there are some things I’m proud of and looking back I know where I went wrong and how I can fix it.

Humanities:

William Lyon Mackenzie Animation:

I touched on this video at my mpol earlier this year, I was struggling with this video but I do think I came through with an OK video, art is not my strong suit at all, especially drawing so animating this video was quite a challenge but it was fun none the less, I fell that the content on this video is fairly strong but the visuals were “meh” to say the most.

WW1 Video:

Humanities has been a bit of a rollercoaster this year (well this entire year has been a roller coaster) but there is some work that I’m proud of, for example my ww1 video, despite how scuffed the final video turned out I think this was one of my more stronger projects behind the scenes, like I said in my blog I think this project had potential to be to be an A project but I did not use the video skills that we have we been practicing since the begging of the year and that was the downfall of the video, along with, of course, my poor time management skills, I know if I get the chance to re do this project I could make something I’m truly proud of.

Oh! I completely forgot to mention that I missed the presentation of our videos at cove cliff there is no excuse for that, and honestly probably my biggest regret looking back on this project.

Heritage Minute:

The heritage minute was a really unique video project, all the creative constraints were quite challenging, and I think our video came out quite nicely if I do say so myself I think I held my weight playing lord durham as well as being the editor this project, and I think we all had a lot of fun learning about lord durham, getting feedback from historical canada was also super cool and I hope we get to get feedback from professionals again in humanities next year.

Victoria Video:

This was one of my weakest videos all year but the victoria trip was amazingly fun and educational I struggled a lot with getting everything in on time with this video but like I said I learned a lot about the royal Canadian navy and the history of B.C as a whole while watching my peers’s videos.

Maker

DI:

(Read my D.I blogs for context)

D.I, was an… experience to say the least but it was a blast, most of the PLP students dread it but I don’t know why D.I went very smoothly with our group and we ended up getting 3rd place at regionals and 2nd at provincials. Our script was funny and our symptomatic was solid as well, our major problem at regionals was our stage blocking but we revised it for provincials and we improved our placement! Everyone in my group was great and I’m actually kinda bummed we won’t get do it again next year.

Blue Sky:

This is probably the project I’m most proud of this year, it was a lot of fun to make and I learned a lot about BC’s history and I’m proud to say that I think I could actually make a little difference with the website I created. For blue sky I created a website to raise awareness for the highway of tears you can visit the website here. Not a lot of people my age know about the highway of tears and thats why I made the website, disappearances are still happening to this day so I tried to make my website engaging so more teenagers know the dangers of hitchhiking on highway 16. My biggest problem with this project was the lack of work I put into the LAUNCH journal.

Scimatics:

The Phosphorus Cycle:

Similar to my blue sky project Jackson and I made a video to raise awareness for the phosphorus cycle and the problems that its having in the modern age. I think this project did a great job on incorporating the video skills we learned in humanities and it showed our understanding of the phosphorus cycle, sadly we didnt make our product that solved our problem but other than that large flaw I think we did an O.K job. Thats pretty much all I have to say on this project.

This is probably the only project I was satisfied with in scimatics this year, although I understand 90% of the concepts I did not do a lot of the work I’m going to be changing this next year, because quite honestly I don’t want to go to another remedial week next year.

Why Do I Feel That I am Ready to Advance to The Next Grade Level?

I feel this way because I think I have Identified all the problems I need to work on to be able to succeed next year those being; using the tools given to me in PGP, using the 7 habits, and keeping myself in check. The biggest problem I had this year wasn’t even procrastination the definition of procrastination is waiting til the last minute to complete a task but the thing is I didn’t even complete all my tasks this year, but when I did I usually did them well, and fast. There were a couple projects this year that I did complete everything on time, and I plan to make that the standard next year, there are also projects that I am proud of (the ones I mentioned here) not to mention, I have the entire summer to think about how I can make myself more efficient with my work ethic so I think I am ready.

So as always thanks for reading and have a great rest of your day / evening.

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Pogogo!

Greetings all welcome back to another blog post today I’m going to be talking about exponent unit in math, for this unit my partner Amelia B and I made a math game that incorporated the exponent laws this is how you play

Instructions:

There is a deck of 68 cards. Each card has a variable on it, with a power: for example, a common card could be A to the power of three. There are also cards that have no power and are simply a variable. There are also brackets cards with powers, and answer cards, with variables and powers. The answer cards are red. 

There are two players. Each player gets a template sheet with 3 mathematical equations on it. Each equation is composed of variables and powers. In order to play the game, you get dealt a deck of 5 cards. If any of the equations on the template have variables with powers that appear on your cards you can play them on the template and setting the used card in front of you so that you remember which cards you’ve discarded and which parts of the equations you’ve completed. For example, if I had an A to the power of three card in my deck, and one of the equations also uses A to the power of three, I would place my A to the power of three card beside my template to show that I’ve found that part of the equation. 

The objective of the game is to find every pair of variable + powers in your equation template in the deck by asking the opposing player if they have a variable and power card that matches your pairs of variables and powers. For example, if player one’s equations have a C to the power of two, player one will ask player two, “Do you have a C to the power of three?” If player two does have a C to the power of three in their deck, they will give it to player one, and player one can cross off C to the power of three on their equation template and discard the card. 

The equations on the template also require an answer, which is on a card in the deck somewhere. The answer cards are red. The equations are simple, so solving them will tell you what card you need to look for when playing the game. If you’ve crossed off all of the variable + power pairs in one equation, all you need in the answer card to complete that certain equation. The first person to complete all three equations on the equation templates wins. 

The brackets cards are for equations that have brackets. In order to complete this equation you need to play a brackets card. The brackets cards will have powers, and so will the brackets in the equations. You must play a brackets card that has a matching power to the brackets in your equation. 

In order to win the game, you must find the cards for all of the parts of your equation. If your equation has brackets and two variables + their powers, you have to acquire the two variable + power cards matching to the equation, a brackets card with a matching power, and the answer to the equation.

This wasn’t a good unit for me, for one I’m getting this Blog wayy too late and two other than helping with the rules Amelia did 60% or more of the work here, going into next year I wont this happen again.

Overall, I did learn a lot with this unit, despite doing exponents last year as well this unit was a nice refresher. So, as always thanks for reading and have a great rest of your day / evening.

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