Alex’s Blog

Yee Haw

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Blue Skys All Over Highway 16

Hello all, and welcome back to another slightly depressing blog post todays topic is blue sky 2k19, although this wasn’t my first exhibition this was my first Blue Sky, and honestly I really hope I get the chance to do another one, I have/had so many more ideas for possible projects but this exhibition I settled on making a website to raise awareness for the highway of tears, you can visit this website right here.

At the start of blue sky I originally wanted to do something about green energy but quickly realized that most of my project ideas had been done before or were too large of undertakings for a grade 9 student with an IPad and a couple months. The weekend after blue sky started me and my mom went up north to Terrace, BC and on the way back I started noticing all the missing peoples signs that were scattered along highway 16, I already knew about The Highway of Tears but seeing the signs made me remember that there family’s that are still looking for lost loved ones. So I decided to make my project about the highway of tears, I immediately knew that I wanted to make an interactive map (which you can see in my website) I debated between making an app within keynote or making a website with WordPress, eventually I decided to make a website because I thought I could make it look nicer and this way I could actually have anyone visit my project.

So I got my pitch approved and got to work, first I made a list of all the documented missing peoples cases that fall under the Highway of Tears area, next I started the website and here’s the thing I didn’t know much about making websites so I kindly asked my father who is web developer to show me the ropes, and surprisingly it wasn’t super duper hard, first we planned out what I wanted the website to look like, and I made a mock-up design on Adobe Illustrator. 

(Rough drafts on how the website would look)

After this my dad helped me pick out a salient theme (similar to the themes that you see on other students blogs but more cool and less free), then we copy and pasted our designs into the theme and put in another plug in to make the pop ups that you see on the map.

After this the website was pretty much ready so I started research on the history and a little tid bits of info about Highway 16 after putting that into the website and moving the titles around so everything fit I was done. The exhibition went really well, and I had a lot of fun, it was a great way to end the year (sort of) and I’m really proud of this website.

Overall, this project taught me a lot about BC’s untold history, and about making websites, this was one of my best looking projects all year and I’m excited for any future blue sky’s I might be able to partake in. So, as always thanks for reading and have great rest of your day/evening.

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D.I Provincials (Even More Cool)

Welcome back to another blog, its um certainly been a while since my last post but nevertheless today I’m talking about my experience at the D.I provincials, this was my first D.I provincials ever and quite honestly its a lot more fun than most of the PLP students give it credit for, anyways, after finishing 3rd at regionals The Medical Men of Mystery advanced to the provincials, you can view our performance for our challenge right here

Our challenge for D.I this year was to research/create some sort of medical mystery and then create a solution for said medical mystery by creating a symptomatic, which would display what the disease was/how it could possibly be cured (if you read my regional post you probably already knew this though), my group consisted of Jason, Caleb, Amelia R, and I.

Some things we changed from regionals included; minor changes to the script to compensate for the absence of Caleb, adding more detail to our symptomatic, and changing our stage blockers, we lost points on each of these at the regionals which is why we revised them.

Reflection:

One of the biggest challenges at the provincials was our backdrop, we made our backdrop completely from scratch and it was larger then most of the others, and it did not fit in any of our vehicles so we had to take it all apart into the smaller pieces and re construct it at Collingwood (which is where the provincials were held) this proved to be a lot harder than we thought it would be as some of our wood had cracked, we persevere and after attaching some heavy objects to keep the backdrop from falling over.

After we got our backdrop and costumes ready we performed and in my humble opinion I thought our performance went a lot smoother the second time around. Apparently the appraisers did too because at the end of the day we walked out with 2nd place ribbons which is an improvement from 3rd place at regionals.

Overall I think I contributed well during this project there was definitely more I could of done at the begging of D.I, but I think I did much better in the two weeks in between regionals and provincials, my group also did an amazing job and we worked well together, it definitely could of been a lot more stressful than it was so thats cool.

With all that being said, as always thanks for reading and have a great rest of your day/evening.

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Half A Year in Review

Alright so welcome to my very first mpol blog. For this post, I’m going to go through a simple formula where I will talk about all the projects I’ve done in a subject and then talk about a challenge I had with the project and something I liked about it. Hope you enjoy.

Humanities 

This has been the class I’ve think that I’ve experienced the most challenges for this year, due to some problems I’ll address in my PGP section.

The first major project we did in first term was our identity videos where we studied how the land around us impacted our identity, we used our video skills learned in our maker class to complete this video, I think I did an O.K job for my first major project but the biggest problem I believe I had was that I had too big of ideas and I didn’t really have the resources/time to accomplish said ideas this was due to me not giving myself enough time to complete 

Our second major project was metaphor machines this was also part of our science grade. This was my first major group project and it was a lot of fun, we studied the Russian revolution and we built a Rube Goldberg machine to metaphorically represent the revolution, the thing I liked about this project the most was the hands on factor for building the machine, the biggest challenge was definitely staying on task here, the spray painting we did was a big distraction for me nevertheless I count this project as a success but there was still room to improve.

The third major project (I’m using the word major too much aren’t I?) was our chemical exhibition the task for the exhibition was to create an immersive experience for our chemical stories, I think my group and I did a great job setting the mood with lighting and audio inside of our room, the only I think we could have done better was bringing/making some more props. This was probably the most fun project I’ve taken part of yet, I’m actually really exited to see what we’re doing for our next exhibition.

The current project I am working on for term 2 is my William Lyon Mackenzie animation, this is definitely the project I’ve been doing the worst on so far even though we are still in the middle of it, I had some trouble choosing a historical figure to study and Ms. Maxwell had to end up choosing one for me, despite all this I think William Lyon Mackenzie is a cool dude and I hope I can recover this project and pull through with something I can be proud of.

Overall, humanities has been O.K for me so far but right now my performance looks like a stock market graph of an unreliable company, it’s all over the place, and I need to try to make myself a little bit more consistant when it comes to work.

Maker

So far in maker we’ve actually only had 3 projects that were exclusively for this class. We’ve mostly have been learning a lot of skills that we can apply to our other subjects such as using IMovie for video creating and we did some story telling work in it earlier this year as well.

The blogging challenge:

The student blogging challenge was quite simply put, a challenge, it was fun for the most part but I easily forgot about it and thus got caught behind in it, there wasn’t much to be proud of for this but it’s something I can learn from so I will.

Take your kid to work day:

The take your kid to work day was kind of unplanned, originally I was supposed to go to moms workplace in new-west but sadly I couldn’t and I stayed home with my dad (he works from home) I already knew what he did before that day and I had a basic knowledge of his job, but I got to see how he did it on take your kid to work day which was pretty cool.

My video was mediocre, personally I thought my editing was rushed and overall the video could have been a bit more polished, nevertheless I got some new knowledge out of this assignment so I’m happy.

Destination Imagination: This is our current big project and so far it looks really cool, I honestly don’t really know why a lot of my other peers seem to dread it so much, it definitely does seem like a hard challenge but its something I’d like to take from a positive angle, and I guess we will see how it turns out in due time

Scimathics

In scimathics this year we’ve mostly done science with electrical circuits and chemistry. We used the skills we learned in our circuits unit in our metaphor machines project as mention earlier. We got to melt some metal, it was pretty fun!

For chemistry our major project was our chemical stories video and later, exhibition. I really loved the chemistry unit and I think I did a fairly good job! I really loved chemistry because it was lot like math but I found it a little more challenging + explosions. This unit was especially cool because I got my first Kahoot! win of the year. All jokes aside I thought this was my most successful unit so far as I mentioned earlier I think my exhibition room was done well, and my video that I made with Emerson was pretty good regardless of our, frankly, terrible art skills.

Currently we are doing exponents I brushed over exponents last year, the only new thing is negative exponents which are pretty cool. Right now we are making card games that incorporate exponent laws and I think I’m doing O.K but I’d like to find a way to make my game a little bit more playable.

Overall schematics are cool.

PGP

PGP is the new addition to PLP this year and it’s unlike any school thing I’ve taken part of, I actually really like PGP I think self-improvement which is actually what I came to PLP. Being self aware of my learning challenges is one of my strengths, the flip side of that is although I know what my problems are (e.g time management, time management, and time management) I don’t really do a good job on solving them so I think PGP will help me with that.

So far in PGP were doing goal books which I haven’t really kept up with, at all. But I think after the stress from this mpol has calmed down I should be able to tackle it. We also had meetings to check in with our learning but I sadly missed it due to my own lack of competence, there was no excuse for missing that and for any teacher reading this, I’m sorry I quite simply forgot. 

Half A Year in Review 

As a learner I think that I have identified my biggest problems. The first being time management of course, it almost seems to be a cliche for me and other students in PLP I’ve been trying to improve myself for over a year on this now, but I haven’t really been doing, that’s actually a lie, I have been doing better but only half of the time it seems (probably less) I need to find a way to make myself more consistent when it comes to showing my learning. The other problem is me focusing too much on the end product too much, as a whole I’ve handed a lot of worksheets and small assignments in late which is unacceptable on my part and I need to stop trying to clear the staircase in one jump. On the other hand PLP has been a good challenge the teachers and other students are great, the projects are unique and fun, and I want to keep on doing my best here as I think myself into the future.

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

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Les Chemical Affair

Winter is here and another PLP exhibition comes with it, this was the first PLP exhibition I attended/contributed to, it was a lot of fun and it was definitely a unique learning experience.

The Project:

The task for the exhibition was to create an immersive experience (a slice of a story put into a room) for our chemical stories video. First we were put into groups of 4 – 6, my group consisted of EmersonKieraTaylor, and myself. The next step was to combine our two separate stories into one, after that construction began to take place, one of our biggest challenges as group was met here, in our room one of the characters (Kiera) was trapped in a cage, originally the cage was going to be made out of pvc pipes but that was changed to cardboard bars which was later changed a dog cage, most of our room consisted of “cob-webs” and other minor old looking decorations (e.g a typewriter, multiple lamps, a old diary, and a chandelier of candles) as our setting was an abandoned cabin.

Emerson on the night of the exhibtion

The night of:

First of all, here is a quick synopsis of our room.

Ona Ozone (Kiera) has gone missing. It is up to you and Detective Ospino (Myself) to find and return Pho Phosphorus’s (Emerson) lost love. To help guide you along the path video clues have been placed around the room. Good luck detective. For anyone who wasn’t at the exhibition Ali Aluminum (Taylor) was revealed to be the kidnapper.

The day of the exhibition was final decorating day proceeded by presenting our room to the public, making the room wasn’t too much of a challenge because we had prepared most of our decorations before-hand, the biggest challenge was probably separating the room into 2 sections with a rug and 3 sheets of long paper.

Me hanging up a decoration

The final product was a success in my books, especially for my first attempt at a PLP exhibition, I think I struggled a little bit with my lines and role as a character in our story but as the night progressed so did my acting skills.

I was incharge of music, the other 3 parts of my group made the food the day earlier, and all of us brought building materials and decorations like electronic candles.

Looking Back:

Overall, this project was a blast and I am fairly proud of the end product, I think my group did a great job on setting the mood of our room with lighting and music. But our room for the most part had stages which is something our teachers told us not to have in our rooms. 

If you asked me what the hardest part of this project was, I would say this blog. Although the exhibition was challenging I found the entire thing so interesting that I found myself actually working before the last minute, so I can’t wait until the next exhibition.

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

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Take your kid to work day!

The take your kid to work day; an eliciting day for the grade nines of Seycove secondary. Most of them battled their way through traffic at 7 am that day, where as I rolled out of bed along with my father, ate my breakfast and got to work!

 

My dad is a graphic designer for his own company, he builds websites and logos for businesses around the world. You can hear him and myself talk all about it on my, take your kid to work day video, linked right here.

 

During the end of the video I talk a bit about work ethic but I didn’t really expand on that in the video. First of all what does work ethic even mean? Well I asked google and this is what it came up with. 

I think there’s a little more to work ethic than just hard work I believe it also includes virtues such as time management, and dedication. Work ethic is something I really want to work on this year as I think my own needs a lot of improvements, for example if my work ethic was better my video could have turned out better, or maybe this blog could have been more in-depth. If my father didn’t have a good work ethic we probably wouldn’t live in the nice apartment we have right now, I know I can do better, and the take your kid to work day unit has shown me that a little more.

 

So overall this unit was really fun, and I think it has opened up a new learning experience for myself, which will definitely be expanded upon in our later PGP course assignments.

 

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

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Live Event

So way back on October 21st, I attended my older cousins birthday. Although it was a fun party and all I’m not talking about his birthday I’m talking about a sort of party trick performed by a family friend, you can hear my dad’s first hand experience with this on my live event video.

You can watch that video right here.

Personally, I don’t think myself nor my father (in my first draft of the video) did a great job on explaining what the party trick actually was. Well, let me explain, the ingredients needed are 5 people and one chair. One of the five people sits on the chair, the four people will cup their fingers into this position shown. 

Then the 4 people will insert their fingers under the chair victim’s knees and shoulders and attempt to lift, 80% the time the chair victim will get lifted an inch at most. The 4 people will retry this but, they will each place their right hand firmly on the top of the chair victims head, of course after the right hand goes on top so does the left. Then the 4 people will try to lift again most often, they will lift the chair victim very high but that raises questions like, how does it work? So I asked my dad that, and you can view that in my video.

In conclusion it was a pretty cool event to watch/take part in and I had a fun time participating and later interviewing my father. So as always thanks for reading another entry in my above mediocre blog!

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Blogging Challenge Week 3 – Creative Commons And Other Image Usage

As the title may suggest, today I will be talking to y’all about Creative Commons (and the rest of our week 3 blogging challenge tasks), but first of all, what is Creative Commons? Who is Creative Commons? How is Creative Commons?

    I think we’re better off with just answering what is Creative Commons. Well it’s a non profit organization, that makes copyright licenses to allow the public to use artist’s work for free! You can read all about them on there website (https://creativecommons.org/about/)

 

    But wait google images aren’t free you might be asking, well yes and no. Most images you find on google CAN be copyrighted. Basically Google Images and fair use is a thin tightrope that Creative Commons turns into a massive suspension bridge.

 

For our other week 3 tasks we challenged with taking a photo of our own to include in out blogs, all the photos I have on my blog (excluding 2) are my own and here is another one of my wall: 

And here is a cool image I found on a Creative Commons plug-in for my blog: Tree & Bird Russ Seidel via Compfight

    Welp, this concludes my week 3 blog! Thank you for reading, have great rest of your day/evening!

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Blogging Challenge Week 2 – Writing Comments

For week two of the blogging challenge we were tasked with writing meaningful comments. I wrote 3 different comments on 3 different blogs them being: https://25zacharydb.edublogs.org http://karenrorypowers.edublogs.org/sample-page/ and http://soleyjay.edublogs.org/2018/10/18/fortnite/ I wrote respectful comments on similar interests I had with these bloggers, and I also left a question for every blogger as well.

 

I also wrote a commenting guidelines page on my own blog, it’s located right beside my about me page on my blog.

Overall, exploring other peoples blogs has been a lot of fun so far and I’m excited for the rest of the challenge and for any responses I get from my comments!

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What I Did On The Alberta Trip

This September, the PLP 9 class went on a field school in the interior of BC and Alberta. I did not attend, why you ask. Well for one, I was playing a lot of hockey and moving into a new house.

Although I was pretty bummed about not being able to go on the trip, I got the news that I had made the a2 team the day before our class left, and that made me pretty not bummed, in fact I was very excited because it is currently my first year playing for North Van minor. So over the week the class was gone I got a chance to get to know my teammates and coaches.

My mom and I moved into our new house on the 16th of September and there was a lot of boxes to move. It was actually pretty fun and I got a chance to have a mini family reunion as multiple aunts, uncles, and cousins helped us move. My favourite thing about moving here is definitely how close we are to the mountains and my Mom’s house is only about a 15 minute walk to the Seymour shuttle.

Hockey and new homes aside though, let me explain what I did at school while the majority of my class was in another province.

For starters the people that stayed (Anikah, Aiden, and I) were given a unique assignment being the Seycove identity video. We also had to make our own ghost town video and individual identity video.

Ghost Town:

While the class got to run around a real ghost town and make a goofy silent, black and white video in it, we got to do the exact same thing, but inside of the school, I think the biggest plus side of filming it at Seycove was the fact that we could run around the school without consequence. In this video Anikah is the Cop, Aedan was the robber, and yours truly, was the camera man/editor.

The Seycove Identity:

The Seycove identity video was fairly fun to make as well mostly because I got to do this video with Anikah and Aedan. This video was a pretty neat thing for me as I got to learn a bit more about this school’s culture and clubs, but it was also a little challenging because of certain actors including myself aren’t the greatest at keeping a straight face while filming. You can watch that video in all its glory right here:

Unit End Video:

Finally, the identity video. This was definitely the most challenging for me but it was also the one I probably learnt the most from, during this project I researched the Oil Refinery located in Burnaby (just across the water from Deep Cove), did a short interview at the cultural centre in deep cove, and did a lot of filming around North Van itself. You can read my full blog post about this unit right here.

I think the fact that we didn’t really have any teachers around us while the class was gone helped me with my own independent responsibility towards work. I did fairly well with staying on task over that week there were definitely a couple blocks wasted on procrastination which is something I struggled with a lot last year but I am getting better!

Overall it was a really fun 10 days and I don’t regret not going on the trip!

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