SLCs the Sixth: TPOLs

The end of June marks the end of another era in PLP, Grade 10. This was a remarkable year, with ups and downs, triumphs and tribulations, but we made it to the other side, mostly unscathed. So, let us reflect on what we have done, and look forward to our next great adventure.

Of your work completed this year, what are you most proud of? Why?

The project that I am probably most proud of is the WW2 podcast. I had a lot of fun with this project, which makes everything 100x better. This was one of the first podcasts we had done, so it was opening a new chapter for us. This year I’ve had a lot of fun doing podcasts, and this one was no different. The experience of going and meeting with these people was really cool, because instead of just learning about something in a textbook, we got to meet people with first hand experience. I also learned a lot when I talked to Abigail Foulds and my Grandpa, Frank Ward. I am proud of the work I have done for this project.

What piece of work done this year would you share with a class visitor? Why?

A project that I would want to show to a visitor is definitely the generator project. Not necessarily the video that went along with it, but the generator itself. In science, and especially in this project, I fell as though the product is the bigger thing, and the video secondary. This doesn’t really make sense in practical terms, since we are mostly graded on the videos, but I’m usually pro under of what we have actually created. In this project, we took a current issue, and created a project that has actual meaning in the real world. This is why I wanted to do PLP in the first place, and that’s what I would want to show visitors.

How do these projects connect to the adult world outside the classroom?

Math is kind of a constant. Sometimes it can be hard to relate math concepts to the real world. This project did a really good job of that, though. For this project, we were looking at real data that scientists and governments had collected, and we had to graph it. Taking these arbitrary numbers, and creating graphs was cool, but to actually see the impact that this could have was even cooler. Emily and I checked the levels where the water rise would start to impact us, and added this to the graphs. It really puts into perspective what is happening in our world, and brings it to us.

What problems did you encounter? How did you solves them?

Finally, we have Destination Imagination. Every year,  talk about Destination Imagination, and how I am working to be a better teammate, but his year I actually did it. Within our group, we had some pretty strong personalities, and with that, some disagreements. There was one pretty bad disagreement, and instead of getting mad or whatever, I took the time to talk to both sides of the argument, and helped them sort it out. It was sometimes frustrating, but in the end it worked out. I’m really proud of how I handled it, and am looking forward to continuing my learning!

The Canadian Experience

Canada. The wonderful, magical cold land of maple syrup and nice people. The thing is, stereo types aren’t very accurate. Although Canada is diverse, throughout history, and to this day, we haven’t always been very accepting of minority groups. In this project, we learned all about different minority groups, focusing on the Chinese minority in Canada in class, and separate minorities for our project. I’ll get to the main project later. First, we’ll talk about Chinese people in Canada, and specifically in Vancouver.

In the late 1800’s and early 1900’s, there were a lot of Chinese immigrants. The thing was, they didn’t want Chinese immigrants. So they enforced the head tax, where Chinese immigrants had to pay $50, to $100, to finally $500 to come into Canada. Once here, they were limited in location. In Vancouver, the Chinese could only live in Chinatown. It’s horrible to think about how hard these people worked to get to Canada, only to be forced to live in certain areas, experiencing Canada completely differently than any white person would’ve.

To deepen our knowledge of Chinese history, and Chinatown, we started reading a book called Jade Peony by Wayson Choy. The book focused around a Chinese family living in Vancouver’s Chinatown. There were three parts to the story, each told from one of the children’s perspectives. It was a very interesting book, and it was interesting to see the different perspective of someone, even though born in Canada, who was living a completely different life than, well, my grandpa. He grew up in Vancouver around the same time. The lifestyle differences were really crazy, and yet, childhood was still similar. Children playing soldiers, reading comics, the idealized childhood experience. 

Since we were learning all about Chinatown, our teachers thought it would be a great idea to take us to Chinatown. While there, we took a tour with the amazing Judy Lam Maxwell. We got to go into a bunch of really cool historical building, learn about Chinatown’s history, and talk to someone who grew up in Chinatown. While there, we made a podcast. Take a listen!

This podcast was different from others we have done in the past. The goal was to record sounds while on location. I found this very difficult. It was hard to know when to record, and when to be looking around, experiencing Chinatown. Overall, I learned a lot from this experience. The biggest this was probably to record as much as possible. Then, when it comes time to edit, you have a lot more to work with. 

Throughout this project, we’d been focusing on perspectives. To finalize the perspective piece, we had to write a positionality paper. It was basically an in-class essay where we explored how our positions impact our experiences with literature. 

I thought it was a really cool topic, and I had a good time writing it. Probably the most challenging part about it was the tone. It was a formal essay, but because it was kinda personal, we were also writing in the first person, using I. We’ve never done it before, so that was probably my biggest challenge. 

Now, finally, we can get to the project of the unit. As we do in PLP 10, it was a podcast. In groups of three or four, we had to research a minority group in Canada to see how they experienced Canada differently. Our minority group was the LGBTQ+ community. Since that is very broad, we decided to focus on three identities within the LGBTQ+ community, those being Pansexual, Bisexual, and Asexual. We wanted to focus on these groups because along with discrimination outside the LGGBTQ+ community, there is also a lot of discrimination towards these groups inside of the LGBTQ+ community. 

For our podcast, we had the pleasure of interviewing Yvette Narlock, an openly queer person at Seycove. It was an amazing experience, and I learned so much. Our podcast is so much better because of her.

This was a really cool experience. Along with learning a bunch about the LGBTQ+ community, the Chinese community, and minorities in Canada, I also got to work on my podcasting skills. I’m still not amazing at podcasting, and this was far from perfect, but I think it went really well. For the future, I will be really aware of audio levels. Other than that, I’m really proud of our work!

Ep. 6 – Abigail Foulds and Frank Ward


2019 marks the 74th anniversary of the end of the Second World War. Even though that seems like a long time, it really isn’t. We still have people greatly impacted by it in our society, with stories about the harsh time. Through these stories, we were able to determine the Legacy of WW2 in Canada.

This project was the study of World War Two, but also the introduction to a new medium that we will now be using more often: sound. This was a podcast project, the first of many. And as this was a sound-based project, we had to do a lot of prep. In maker, we worked with GarageBand to learn how to make music, and manipulate sound. That was fun. GarageBand can be a bit fickle sometimes, but as with everything, practice makes perfect. 

As an introduction into the unit, we had to come up with questions based on images from world war 2. As a group, a lot of our questions were based around Hitler, which was interesting. A lot of my questions were based around the scientific breakthroughs that occurred during the war. As bad as War is, it always pushes the world further, trying to figure out the next best way to kill each other. 

As I mentioned before, this project was a podcast based upon the idea of the legacy of WW2 in Canada. And what better way to do that than to talk to people who actually lived though the war! Our fearless humanities teacher got in contact with the Memory Project, which put us in contact with people who were alive during the war, wether they were veterans, or lived in Europe through the war. We were then put into groups of 3, where we would go interview the people. I was in a group with Maggie and Daniel, though only Maggie and I were able to actually meet our person. Our person was Abigail Foulds. Abigail lived in Holland during the Second World War, and met her husband, a Canadian medical officer, soon after the war. They moved to Canada and got married. It was an amazing experience to meet her.

I also talked to my grandparents for this assignment. My grandfather was born during the depression, so he lived during the war in Canada. My grandma, on the other hand, was born at the very beginning of WW2 in Britain. She had to be sent away from her home to avoid the blitz, which would’ve been terrifying as a young child. In my podcast, I interview my grandpa about living during the war, sine my grandma could remember much.

Throughout all this project work, we were also having mini lessons about big turning points of WW2. I talk about two of these turning points in a podcast that was a mini assignment.

It was difficult at first using GarageBand to edit all the clips together. Other than the little strange assignments we’d get in maker, we hadn’t done much work with it. But what I’ve come to realize is that it’s basically iMovie, which we’ve worked with a lot. It’s just sound instead of images. I’ve also come to realize that I’m way better at editing sound than I am at editing together images and video. My draft one was okay, but I really had to work on my editing because I kept stumbling over my words and trying to edit them out afterwords.

Honestly, I’ve really learned a lot from this project. It’s probably the work I’m most proud of, like ever. Other than the sound of my own voice, which is hideous and awful. I really look forward to working with this medium more and more!

SLCs the Fifth: Once again, MPols

This is my 5th SLC, and such, is SCLs the 5th. Now that I have all this experience with MPols and the structure, it is different. Adaptation. Anyways. We’ve started a new course thing called PGP, and through that, we’ve got specific things we need to work on throughout our studies. For PLP 10, they are as follows.

Finding Humour

Applying Past Knowledge to New Situations

Questioning and Posing Problems

Remaining Open to Continuous Learning

And so, I will be telling the journey of my learning through these things! Now, I haven’t really done any focusing on the Finding Humour one, but the rest are there. So, let’s go on to the first one…

Applying Past Knowledge to New Situations

This is a very important thing to be able to use, and to a project in which I think I demonstrated this well was the Trigonometry Project; SohCahToa, the Tropical Trig Island.

The past knowledge that was uses in this project was the circuitry. We learned about this a bunch in Grade 9, and the concept really stuck with me. So for our building, we had actual circuits to demonstrate the use of the solar panels!

Questioning and Posing Problems

Questioning and posing problems is very important for PLP students, as most, if not all of our learning is based around a driving question. Asking questions can help if you don’t understand something, or help deepen your learning. There’ve been two projects this year that this was my main focus. The first one is the Chemistry Unit, which we have only recently started. Chemistry intrigues me, and when we are doing book work and experiments, I want to understand everything fully. So I ask questions, either cementing an observation in my mind, or figuring out new concepts.

Remaining Open to Continuous Learning

Now, this is integral for high school. Because of the curriculum change and stuff, we as students sometimes find ourselves learning the same stuff as before, but in a deeper way. One, not project, but kind of focus in PLP, is video-making. We have made tons and tons of videos, and sometimes it gets a little arduous. This year, we have done many videos, and have been focusing in on refining our skills in our Maker Class. We did this a lot during our Recreation Project; “And Action, Wait, *Thunder* Okay Go”.

For this project, we had to be very technical. Before filming, we had to get all of these different forms in, outlining this story and such. They may seem annoying at the time, but they really help you understand your story. Also with the videos, editing it is a skill I’m still working on. I just am not fully adept in the art that is editing. What I can do is write screenplays, which I have done in several of our group video projects.

Another project, or well, area, that this has come in handy, is the PGP course we’ve started this year in PLP. But the thing is, this isn’t a new concept. From the beginning of Grade 8, we’ve been learning about Growth Mindset *groan* and goal setting. It’s just that this course has really made us accountable for our goals. Not only that, but it has made goal setting clearer to me, and helped me understand what I really need to focus on.

And finally, the project all 10s could refer to for this is the Cray Cray Unit.

The Cray Cray Unit, consisting of 3 big assignments including an essay, a video, and the Winter Exhibition, plus the Seattle Trip, was one of the times this was a necessary asset. We understood the topic so deeply after, and I think that was huge.

That is the biggest part of this, the deeper learning. With all of these skills, we will gain a deeper knowledge of all the topics we work on, something that I don’t think you get from regular school.

And that concludes my MPol!


Crazy people change the world by bringing the future to societal norms. There are many examples of this in Seattle, which we have gone to. One of these futuristic groups is B8ta, a technology store in University Village. At B8ta, they demonstrate IOT, which is internet of things, and take customer service to the next level. All their technology takes everyday objects, and merges them with technology. There are water bottles that tell you how much water to drink, electronic wallets, and so much more. Each of their products the consumer can test out. This encourages people to try new things, and see not what they need, but what they want. When you test out this technology, you can see how far our world has come within the sphere of technology, and yet we keep moving. As we add technology to more and more things, you can understand why we need it. Another crazy thing in is Microsoft’s Hackathon. This is an event where employees of Microsoft get together to form new ideas for whatever they want. Through this, employees are encouraged to workshop ideas, and create them. They can come up with these amazing, futuristic concepts, and bring them to life. The Hackathon is definitely something out of the ordinary. By giving people this opportunity to get their ideas out, they have more space to think of more ideas, and help innovate the world, taking us farther down the path of the future. Creative minds help bring ideas to us. One final example of crazy is at Amazon. They operate as if everyday is Day 1. Everyday they try new things, work with new ideas, and move forward. This scares some people, because routine can be important, even a ritual for some people. But by having this mindset, they can move forward, developing new concepts and technology. The Day 1 idea helps Amazon take their failures and successes, and improve. This reflection creates new technology that’s way better than the first draft. Try, try again, and develop the technology of the future. These extraordinary people have created amazing things, that greatly impact our lives. The future is scary, controversial, and different, but helps our world move forward. Without these forward thinkers, society would be mightily behind what is is today.

As is a part of PLP, we always go on an interesting Field School. I also find a theme to connect the trips, such as The Journey East. This year, we follow the same trend, though I guess it’ll be a bit more circley. Anyways, this is South.

This post is also part of the Cray Cray unit and series of three posts! The other posts explain the introduction into our unit, and the end result.

I would just like to start by saying that Seattle is the American version of Vancouver.

So, if you’ve read the other Cray Cray posts, you probably know the gist of this unit, and our focuses and such. But if not, let me explain. We’ve been working with the idea of Crazy, and why it takes a crazy person to change the world. We have studied several people, and ideas based in Seattle, who demonstrate this idea of crazy.

The first thing we did (that I haven’t already explained in other posts) was an essay based around this question. We chose different Seattle based people, and explained what made them crazy. I chose Stan Lee, Paul Allen and the Wright Brothers. It was very interesting, as it was not an in-class essay. We also had to learn how to do MLA formatting. This is SO annoying, but it is good to know.

With all this prior knowledge, we set off at 5 O’CLOCK IN THE MORNING to Seattle. I didn’t like that part. But the rest of the trip was amazing, and what this post is about. Don’t let my rambling fool you, that is where this is going.

The PROJECT part of the trip was a video. We were put in groups based on our essay people and had to film on location while in Seattle. My part in this was writing the script, and the screenplay. This was a bit difficult, seeing as we weren’t exactly sure what was at each place. I am pretty proud of the script, and I didn’t need to do tons of revision. One thing I would do next time is have a clearer outline of the interviews. We did get some, and a few were very good, but I feel as though the questions could’ve been more structured.

K. Seattle. Learning. I did learn a lot on this trip, but wether or not it was the stuff the teachers wanted us to learn is another story. We went to a ton of places, and I don’t really want this post to go on forever. So, I am going to explain a few of my favourite places, and places I learned a lot.

Microsoft Garage
Microsoft was the first place we went in Seattle. We first went on a tour, and as much fun as that was, this is not the section called ‘Microsoft Tour’. This is the Microsoft Garage section, which probably doesn’t make sense unless you went with us. The Microsoft Garage is a place in Microsoft where they come up with new ideas, and have the resources to make them! It was amazing, and we got a super cool tour from Dude Who’s Name I Can’t Remember. He talked about the things they do there, and the process in which they make things. What was really cool was that a lot of the ideas that he talked we use in PLP. It’s nice to see that the things we do in PLP aren’t totally mental.

Also with Dude Who’s Name I Can’t Remember we talked about ideas, and passion. You have to be passionate, involved with your idea, for it to come to fruition. He said how the best things come from a diverse team. This idea really makes you think. Maybe it’s why our teachers always make us work with different people. We’ll never know.

Living Computers
The Living Computers lab was super cool, like legit amazing. They had technology from decades ago, showing the beginning of computers, the highs and lows of the industry. It’s crazy to think how technology that once too up entire rooms, and entire buildings, can now fit in our pockets.


There were arcade games, and remote control robots, it was amazing. But the thing was, because there was lots of old technology, there was a really high pitch sound resonating from said technology. It hurt my head, and mildly negatively impacted my time there. It was still amazing though.

Chihuly Garden and Glass
Dale Chihuly is a very controversial figure. I talk about him a bit in my PechaKucha, and that’s probably enough. Just watching that would be enough. Anyways. We went to the Chihuly Garden and Glass. It was crazy. The art sculptures on display was fantastically inspiring. It’s amazing.

During the trip, I think I had a hard time living in the moment, as I was always thinking about what we needed to film for the video. If I were to go back, I think I would focus on the present, and having fun rather that all work. Good thing my friend is making me go back to Seattle during spring break!

Also while in Seattle, we were ‘locked in a room forced’ to write a paragraph about crazy ideas. It took many, many drafts, so it will be shared to the world. And yes, I copied it from the original because you deserve to be able to read it without going to another page. It is at the top in the HotBox accordion.

A Vision For Tomorrow

As is the PLP tradition, every winter we have the Winter Exhibition, a night in which students of all grade level complete a different project and put it on display for the community. And as is another tradition (grade 8 exhibition), we had a week to complete this project. But this year, the teachers tried a new thing. Instead of starting a completely new project for the exhibition, we were working with an idea that we had been for a while, ‘Why Does It Take A Crazy Person To Change The World?’. And when I say a while, I mean a while. As Luca put it, we had all ‘overstood’ this topic. We had been learning about this for several weeks, and it came full circle. 

To start the unit, we created a short PechaKutcha presentation, a term I will explain later. These presentations were based on people from Apple’s ‘Think Different’ campaign. This, as we now know, was a precursor to what we’d be doing at the exhibition. 

As I mentioned before, here’s where I’m going to explain what that weird word is. So, a PechaKucha is a form of presenting where the slides auto play, which you may not think would be an issue. The real issue was, each slide lasted for 20 seconds, and there were 20 slides. 20×20, seven minutes in total. The first ones we did, mine on Jim Henson, only had 9 slides, and lasted for about 2-3 minutes (if I remember correctly, like I said it was a long time ago). 

Another key part of this project was our Seattle Field school, which I (will) explain in more detail in another post. But as an overview, we studied people (before the trip) and visited places (related to said people) to gain a better understanding of our question. All these deliverables, including an essay and a video, helped us ‘overstand’ this topic. 

As little or much as this may seem, I believe it was really important for us to have all this knowledge going into our exhibition. Because as you’ll see, our knowledge was what got us through to the other side. 

Okay, now that we got through the history lesson, we can go to the spectacle that was the exhibition. Our task for the exhibition was to take all that we learned over the Cray Cray Yay Yay unit and create a PechaKucha presentation on ‘Why Does It Take A Crazy Person To Change The World’. Along with creating these 7 minute presentations, we also had to set up our room, which happened to be the back of the library, but I’ll come back to this later. 

Creating our PechaKucha presentations were, not difficult, but challenging. We were tasked with using all of our own images and have most of them be from Seattle, which, at the time, I thought was mental and going to ruin my project, but I think really made it stronger. I had a solid connection to the picture, I knew exactly what was in it and what the purpose of it was. It did take a while for me to choose images that actually fit, and it was a bit stressful. But we had several drafts and lots of feedback, so I am pretty proud of how it turned out. 

That was more of the maker side of things. Now, let’s talk about the ‘dire events’ that befell us on our journey, and their reason; the script and speaking. The script was one of the most difficult parts of our presentation. And we weren’t even supposed to have a script; only bullet points. In my first draft, I did try this. I didn’t really work out, though. I found myself saying ‘um’ to often, and seeming like I didn’t know what I was saying. So I did write a script to practice with, which was beneficial in the end. The controversial part of this was we had several plan-changes, which many people took very seriously. In the first round, we were allowed to have our iPads up with us when we were presenting in front of a podium, with presenter notes open, so we knew what to say. Next, we weren’t going to have a podium, and our iPads had to be on the ground, with our notes there. Finally, we had no notes, no nothing. Just us, up there, with a monitor on the ground showing what was being presented and our memorized ‘notes’ in our heads. Many people had problems with this, said that the teachers were being unfair, changing their minds. I do understand where this is coming from, seeing as the last revision was just days before the exhibition. But I found as I practiced my script, I got a better understanding of what I was saying, and articulated my words. 

The hardest thing that I found was the public speaking. I’m not a great public speaker, I get very anxious standing by myself in front of people. In the days leading up to the exhibition, my stress kept getting higher the more I thought about it. But as soon as I got up there and started speaking, that all melted away. I knew what I was saying, and I was passionate about the message I was getting across. Everything kind of fit together once I started speaking. And as far as I know, it went great. I didn’t say um a lot, and I used hand gestures. I really think I conveyed my message, which I’m super proud of. 

The last thing I will talk about was the room, which earlier I touched on. So, as you probably know, at the Winter Exhibition, each class has to set up a room to present in. Most times, you have to set up places where to display each persons project, and it gets kind of crowded. But for us, since we were presenting one at a time, we didn’t have to do that. With Jessie as our unofficial leader, we set up the Crazy Café, a lounge-like setting with comfy chairs, stools, tables, and even coffee and tea. It was an amazingly chill room, great for de-stressing pre and post presentation. For PLP 10, the exhibition was a huge success!

Overall, I thought this project went really well. I’m really proud of my PechaKucha, I think it went really well. I also got to work on my group work skills, when setting up the room. One thing I think I would do different next time is add a little more diversity into my work. It would’ve been nice to include at least one woman. Another thing is my photos. As confident as I was, if I’d known in Seattle that we’d need these photos, I would’ve probably tried harder to get those photos. But I’m proud of my work, and excited about how many people I actually got to tell my ‘crazy’ story to!

He’s Crazy

We have recently started a new unit. It’s definitely interesting. It is called…

Cray Cray Yay! Yay!

What a name, right? Anyways. The driving question for the unit, well, this project in particular, is ‘Why was this person thought of as crazy and how did they change the world?’ This mini project was a fun one, and I learned a lot.

First, we watched Apple’s Think Different Video. The people in this video, and others who were featured in the campaign, changed the world because they were different. And different can be crazy.

From the people in the campaign, we each chose someone to do a keynote presentation. But this wasn’t a regular keynote, oh no. This was a pecha kucha. A pecha kucha presentation is a presentation where the slides change only every 20 seconds, and usually last for about 7 minutes. For us, we had 9 slides, 20 seconds each, the whole thing lasting only 3 minutes. Now, that was really hard. To fit a person’s entire life into a 3 minute presentation is hard. But, we did it.

The person I chose for this was Jim Henson. Jim Henson was an amazing man, who completely altered the film industry. This is his story. 

Creative Commons License IGypsyWoman via Compfight

Jim Henson was born in Greenville, Mississippi on September 24, 1936. From a young age, he had an interest in puppets. He was heavily influenced by radio ventriloquist Edgar Bergen, Burr Tillstrom with his puppets Kukla and Ollie, and other puppeteers. While attending high school, he made puppets for a television program called the Junior Morning Show. 

He followed his passion into university, where he created Sam and Friends with his future wife. These characters were the forerunners for the muppets, and even included a prototype of Kermit the frog. Did you know that the word Muppet is a combination of marionette and puppet? 

As his work with puppets progressed, he started to experiment with puppetry on television. He worked with having the performer off camera, using rods to control the puppets, and precise mouth movements. He even changed what puppets were made of. Instead of wood, he started  working with foam rubber and different fabrics. 

As he developed his Muppets, he started to get more recognition. He began making commercials with his muppets. In 1958, he and his wife created Muppets Inc. in New York City. There, he hired Jerry Juhl and Frank Oz, who became critical to the latter years of the muppets. 

InspiredImages / Pixabay

In 1969, the Children’s Television Workshop had an idea for a show with puppets. They acquired Henson and his muppets, and through that, Sesame Street was born. Characters like Grover, Bert and Ernie, Cookie Monster, Oscar and Big Bird were first featured. Even Kermit was on Sesame Street. 

Once Sesame Street took off, Henson started to see where his muppets could go. He tried to start a television program in America, but the producers thought it was crazy. So he pitched it to Lew Grade, who loved it. They moved to England and started the Muppet Show.

Ribastank / Pixabay


3 years into the muppet show, Henson and his team created The Muppet Movie. This was a huge success. Once they realized the success that the movies could have, they stopped making the TV show and focused on films. Muppet movies, like Muppets Take Manhattan, or the animated show Muppet Babies, were plentiful. He worked on other things as well, including Fraggle Rock, Labyrinth, and The Storyteller. He even worked on The Empire Strikes Back, with the creation of Yoda.

In the 1980s, he entered into discussions with Disney about acquiring the Muppets. Nothing came of these first talks, because of Henson’s unexpected death in 1990. His children took over the company, and ran it for some time until the Disney discussion began again. In 2004, it was official. The Muppets were Disney.

Jim Henson’s legacy is still seen today. As well as the many muppet movies produced recently, the Jim Henson Creature Shop has continued making muppets for other films. Farscape, Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy, and MirrorMask are a few.

Jim Henson changed the world of puppets, and had a huge part in the introduction of them into the media, so for that he was crazy.

All of the people who changed the world were different. They had an idea, one that wasn’t normal. An idea that didn’t fit into the societal norms. Something that had never been thought of before. To ignore all that, and change the world, well, that’s crazy. 

Essay Writting

As I mentioned in my Movie Trailer Project Thing, for this project we had to read books and create a video. What I didn’t mention was that the video was part of a larger purpose. The true purpose for this project was to WRITE AN ESSAY!!! Not just any essay, either. An in class, synthesis essay.

A synthesis essay is an essay that uses many different sources to support your thesis. For this particular synthesis essay, we had a few specific things to draw upon. Firstly, we had our choice books, which I mentioned in a previous post. For me, that was Don’t Get Caught.




We also read another book, called Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi. It was an autobiography about her childhood in Iran during the Iranian revolution. It was a very interesting story about different perspectives, and I thought it was really cool.



For this essay, we also had to have a third source. I chose the book Go Show the World by Wab Kinew. This story tells us about different First Nations people in history. We actually got to go meet Wab Kinew and I got his book signed. Anyways, I wanted to chose this book because I thought it was really cool how he told the stories of people that are largely looked over in history.

I think the most important step for preparing for an in class essay is the planning stage. While making the outline I felt like I really got to understand my thesis, and the point I was trying to make through writing this essay. Another important part was the details. For the essay, we were able to bring in a piece of paper that had facts, quotes, and the like. While putting this together, I found more direction in for my essay.

The most difficult step was probably worrying about forgetting your outline. We were not able to bring our outline into the essay, and a lot of us, me included, were worried that all of our preparations would be for not. It turned out that by working so tirelessly in the outline, and in making all the revisions, I had my outline pretty solid in my mind.

It is important to practice essay writing in school because in the future, there will be many instances in which we will have to write essays that have a great determining factors. For example, when applying for jobs and universities, it may be required to write an essay to determine wether or not you will be fit for the opening. Also, practicing the writing process is great for would-be authors. The outline that we made for this essay could also be used when writing a novel. Not exactly in the same form, but similar. As we continue to practice these skills, we will progress as learners, and as people.

Click on the image to view my full essay!

Writing an essay was hard. We had the preparation, the actual essay write, and then the revision process. I was pretty happy with how my essay came out in the end, but i still had a bit to revise. There were lots of little things, like tenses and words I could’ve ommitted. This was a long process, and I know that this won’t be the last. In the future, I plan to have more ideas formulated before hand, for the body paragraphs, so that I don’t fall short. I noticed in this essay that I finished with lots of time. Next essay, I hope to still finish with time to look my essay over, but also have more supporting points.

Movie Trailer Book Thing

Reading is fun. I truly believe that. In grade 10, we have to learn how to read for fun. And, as I explained in my other post, I read Don’t Get Caught by Kurt Dinan. So after we read the book, we had to do the project, which was a movie trailer for our book. There were several steps to this project. 

First step was an individual trailer template. It was very interesting, because our teacher was on another PLP trip. And our sub didn’t exactly know what was going on, so we came up with many different ideas for what this was. I figured that it was, well, I’ll show you instead. 

It wasn’t great, but I think it got my point across. If I were to to this differently, I would have drawn stick figures, or diagrams, or something more visual than what I had.

Once we finished this, we had to create a group trailer template. In my group, which was Daniel, Lucas, and Jamie, we divided up the tasks and put it together. 

In our second draft, we took the critique we got and made it better. We added more shots, and added specifications. Also at this time we had to figure out who was playing whom.

This was a very difficult part. We had an idea, but we ended up completely switching it. We had Tamara as Kate Malone, Lucas as Dave Wheeler, Jamie as Tim Adleta, and Daniel as Maxwell Cobb. I played Ellie Wick. Based on character description, it didn’t really fit, but our video turned out alright. 

Click the pic for the full script!

The script was interesting. I wrote the script, and due to how we structured the video, I wanted to use direct passages from the book. Don’t Get Caught is written as if you are in Max’s head, so it was pretty easy to work with. One of the things that bothered me was that the descriptions on some of the characters is limited, so you don’t really know that much about them until the book progresses. 

Our first draft wasn’t fantastic, but it wasn’t terrible. We had a critique in class, and the basic things we needed to fix were the missing shot, fix some audio things, and move the reviews around a bit. We had a week to revise and refilm, but as this project was part of a larger project, we didn’t have tons of time in class. We did get it though, and I’m actually really proud of how this turned out. 

I have a lot to reflect on with this project. If I were to redo this project, I think I would have taken more of a leadership role. I tried to direct our group a bit, but it didn’t turn out so well. I would also have to say that for some of our assignments, the work probably could have been distributed more equally. But overall, I’m actually pretty proud of our group. It may sound strange, but we’re kinda like the water tower five. Yup, that sounded weird. 

Now these videos will haunt us forever. Because they won’t just be on our blogs, no. Our school has ‘reading group’ copies of these books, and our teacher put QR codes linking to our videos on the books. So Seycove will forever be reminded of our PLP 10 class, through this! Oh god, I hope no one I know watches this. 

Book Choice, First Predictions and Challenge!

Grade 10. Wow, I’m old. Anyways. So, for my first blog post of this year, I will be talking about a project we just started in humanities. The driving question is ‘ How do authors use text to teach us more about ourselves?‘

Beginning this unit, as you’ve probably guessed due to the question, we had to read a book. But, because in grade ten we are supposed to ‘read for enjoyment’, which I do anyways, we had several options in which book to choose. The books are as follows:

More Happy Than Not by Adam Silvera

Dumplin’ by Julie Murphy

The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky

Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli

Don’t Get Caught by Kurt Dinan

The book that I chose for this was Don’t Get Caught. It’s about a kid who is looked over in high school. Then one day, he gets a note from this group called the chaos club to meet at the local water tower. I won’t say anything more, just in case someone hasn’t read the book. 

For a prediction in the book, I think that the chaos club is going to get really mad and accidentally give themselves up. 

Every Tuesday and Friday in class, we have these mini book challenges. For the first one, I worked with my group Jamie, Lucas and Daniel to create this video to show some important parts in the first 5 chapters in the books! Here’s the video.

Bye for now!