The Future is on the Horizon

No matter what age you are, in your youth you will always be asked the same generic question, “What are you going to be when you grow up?”. Needless to say this questions get incredibly repetitive. Yet in my old age (grade 10) it is becoming more apparent that this is something I will need to come to terms with. In Maker, we have been turning the corner into a new unit, career life. During the beginning of this unit we have been assigned, in the MyBlueprint app to tackle this exact question. MyBlueprint is a Canadian career and life planning resource that is designed to help prepare and organize youth and young adults future.

In MyBlueprint there are multiple courses that you can take, one of them being, Who am I? In this course we took 5 different “tests”, Motivations, Learning Styles, Personality, Knowledge, Interests. During these tests I learned a few things about myself, but I did not find it to be a very truthful representative. During the tests and based of the results I found it was a product that represented who I would like to become and be. I believe I produced these results because when answering I unconsciously wrote answers that were a representation of what I wish I was. 

Here is the results: 

After, taking the tests it was time to reflect, as the good PLP students we are. This reflection came in the form of a presentation that used our skills in Keynote. This presentation was deceptively challenging. Whether it was because I was ill prepared or over confident, I felt like I didn’t do amazing. Maybe I am being tough on myself, but I certainly could work on my presentation skills. 

The next step in this assignment was really helpful; I went to a section of MyBlueprint that aided me in planning out my next 2 years, and my current one. This was really helpful because most post-Secondary options require certain courses that could be restricted if I do not take a particular course. During this section of MyBlueprint I had to really make some quick decisions about what courses I will take for grade 12. This was difficult because I realized how quickly everything is coming to a close, and how grade 12 is coming to soon. 

The most important and interesting part for me in this entire assignment was looking at the jobs, delving into the requirements and benefits of jobs I’m interested in. I took the results of the test and found, Post-Secondary, Workplace, Apprenticeship, and Career options. During this journey of jobs. I came across a gem: Sports Medicine Doctor. This job is incredibly interesting because it relates to my interest, skillset, and motivation. I have heard a lot about sports medicine and tonight it really caught my eye.

After, I finished looking for Post-Secondary, Workplace, Apprenticeship, and Career options, I had one last tasks. This task was to graph/spreadsheet career paths that interest me. This was interesting because it gave me another introduction to Numbers and it rewarded me with the opportunity to write down important and cool notes about my future and jobs of interest. 

Overall this assignment was incredibly engaging, even though I believe many of my results where not great evidence of who I am, I still learnt a ton about my options and future. The future is on the horizon and this project has made it apparent. 

Minorities In Canada | A PLP Unit

There are three certainties in life, death, taxes, and change. Thankfully we are globally changing and evolving in our acceptance for minorities. Recently in class we worked on a unit aimed to create awareness and discussion towards the experiences for minorities in Canada.

The Beginning of the End

To begin this project we watched a fast paced ad that spoke to the ideas and freedoms that came with being Canadian. After, we stormed the white board and spoke about if this “Canadian experience” is different for minorities. During this assignment I had the realization of how many parts of the Canadian experience is not afforded to Minorities. Whether I knew it or not this assignment would will me to put my best foot forward during this project and really empower me to learn more. 

Wayson Choy’s Jade Peony

During the long windy road to success with our podcast; we where also reading a book, Jade Peony. Jade Peony is a intergenerational story about a immigrant Chinese family (a minority) living in Chinatown during and around WWII. Jade Peony was written by Wayson Choy who wrote the book through the perspectives of the children in the family who embark through life in Chinatown. This book was incredible because it was well written, and it gave us further knowledge about the experiences of minorities in Canada, past and present. 

Vancouvers China Town

Our class, the grade 10 PLP cohort ventured on a brief field study to Vancouver China Town. By no coincidence this is where Jade Peony (the book) took place. This day was extremely fun not only because of the mass amounts of dumplings I ate, but also to discover more about the areas history. Whilst we were there, the class created a mini-podcast called “The Sounds of Chinatown”. For this project we where assigned to create a podcast on our day and to be literal, the sounds of China Town. This day helped me take in the culture of China Town and realize the importance of understanding what these people went through. 

LITerature 

During this unit we did a heck of a lot of writing; to make it even better we wrote about ourselves. Writing about yourself can be difficult, you battle with the idea of being snobby, to humble, or overconfident. In this unit we specifically wrote about our positions. Someone’s position, is a point of view given to them by demographic or experiences, something that gives them a perspective specific to them. During the span of month or so we wrote many different positional papers. These papers not only helped me become a better writer but also helped me reflect on myself. 

 

The Big Kahuna 

Don’t sweat it, there was a point to all this writing. After quite a bit of sharpening up our writing, we where ready to tackle the big kahuna! We where assigned to write an essay on “how do our positions affect our literature”. Thankfully, my peers and I had some prior experience because of our essay writing last year. Before hurling ourselves into a whirlwind of essay we got organized and planned out a outline. This outline was vital to organizing our attack and knowing what to write. For this essay we where to use personal positions, and also to connect with other assignments, positions from the book (Jade Peony). 

 

In general the essay ended up good. If I reflect back I would have really prepared myself further because I exposed one of my many weaknesses, writing quickly. I was gifted a extra hour to finish yet I still was disappointed my peers finished much quicker than I did. Very much like the blog post I am writing, I pick my words carefully and never find a flow.

The Big Assignment 

The main part of this unit was a group endeavour that took a while, my group consisted of Jessie, Alivia, and Tamara (Ms. Maxwell assembled the dream team). My groups “minority” was the LGBTQ+ community, an invisible minority. This is a very important detail, a invisible minority is someone that does not appear to be anything out of the “norm”. Examples would be, Chronic Pain, LGBTQ+, and religious beliefs such as Sikhism. The assignment for this project was to create a group podcast that shined a light on a minority group and include the voices of  knowledgeable interviewees. 

You may be wondering, There’s a ton of different minority groups, why LGBTQ+? Well I believe that the time are changing and people want to find inclusiveness in Canada. I felt as though it would be interesting to look at minority group that only a border away there are states that prohibit gay marriages. To find out more about what it is like around the globe for LGBTQ+ people we spoke to the amazing Yvette Narlock who is a badass Seycove Councillor and has been proudly in the LGBTQ+ community for most of her adult life. For our podcast Yvette was our interviewee and was truly amazing. My group members and I where in a deep conversation with her for close to an hour, that brought someone who once knew little about the LGBTQ+ community in Canada, to a knowledgeable ally. 

For this project, once we had the interview and wrote out a outline/script, it was smooth sailing. During the post-production I had the opportunity to work on flaws of mine, such as editing and creating music. Being able to work on a flaw for a project is pretty darn awesome and really helped to advance my skills. For the music and editing I did it all in Garageband. Something technical I also learnt was that audio all needs to be recorded by the same device, and it must be working. For the interview audio it was extremely quiet and could have been more proportionate to the rest. 

Overall in this unit I was blessed to have amazing group members, assignments, and interviewees. During the extent of this unit I was extremely pleased with my learning, I felt like I worked on my writing, interview skills, knowledge of minorities, post-production, inquiry skills, and team work. This unit was a blast, I feel as though it was my favourite of the year.

Cell Systems

I’m back and ready to go! Spring break was a ball, now where back on the saddle after  our first Scimatics project of term 3. Our latest project in math class was similar to the previous, we had to graph phone plans linearly to find out which plan would be better (quite like the Flow Like Water project). We used data overages as our measurement and used our knowledge of algebra to find the slope of those equations. The outcomes and opinions from this project where also pretty subjective because of the dependence on the buyers lifestyle.

For this project, my partner (Jessie) and I worked together to compare the prices of data planes for Telus, Rogers, and Freedom. We measured these plans in particular because Telus and Rogers have the same overage prices and would result in no solution.

Reasoning and Modelling

Our keynote included graphs and visual that where extremely informative and displayed  our linear equations and what each plan could offer. My partner and I included solving algebraically as it is a method we learned in class. Solving algebraically is quicker than solving with a table of values.

Understanding and Solving

During the project we explained the slope and y-intercept well, this was present during our project, going back to the feedback we could have zoomed in more.

Communicating and Representing

While we where displaying the project we communicated and represented the plans and what would be best for people’s different lifestyles.

Connecting and Reflecting

During the extent of the project we could have done a better job on this competency by displaying the potential savings of each data plan. My partner and I did do a good job of showing which plan would be better for different people. For example, if you are going to use over 500mb of data than Rogers probably is to little of a plan for you, and Freedom would be a smarter choice.

Overall this project was a great way to sharpen up our algebra and linear equation skills and was super cool! I look forward to taking on another challenge in Scimatics 10!

DI Regionals 2019 | A Performance for the History Books

For the third and likely final time, my grade 10 cohort and I where split into three groups to participate in the greatest competition of our academic career. If you aren’t picking up what i’m putting down, if you don’t smell what I stepped in, I am taking about DI. If you don’t know much about DI or anything at all, it is a international academic competition that challenges kids to create a solution for any sort of challenge. In DI there is 6 main challenges, Technical, Fine Arts, Scientific, Improv, Service Learning, and Engineering. 

For this year’s DI tournament we where in the senior level, arguably the least competitive yet in my opinion the most challenging. We began our DI path to greatness by somewhat randomly creating groups out of the 17 or so student in my class. I was blessed right of the bat with a spectacular group that for all things considered jived pretty well. My group was, Jessie Bullen, Marshall Archibald, Luca OG, Adlih Britton, and last but certainly not least Lucas “Aloe Plug” Koop. The next step was to pick each groups challenge, for this we where given 15 minutes to devise a strong argument for why we should be given the challenge of our choice. My group as well as the rest decided we want to take on the technical challenge. Because everyone wanted to participate in that particular challenge we opted out and chose Fine Arts crudely known as Farts. This ended up being a blessing because our group ended up working well in fine arts because many of our group members where artistically inclined (not myself). 

Once my group was set up and ready to go we wasted no time jumping in to the process of creating a solution. The 2019 Fine Arts challenge revolves around games (how radical is that) so we chose to work around the eternally popular Game of Life. We chose the game of life because we wanted our performance to speak to the barriers and lack of choices in the game. Jessie Bullen, who took a leadership role and a heavy work load began working on the script right away. I would love nothing more then to act up and say how much of a fuss DI was but honestly once we found a direction and a suitable script it was virtually smooth sailing from there. 

A big plus for DI this year was the independent reflections every month or so. These reflections included multiple questions about the ups and downs of DI and a pie chart of the work balance throughout the group. In this reflection I learnt a lot about myself and what kind of partner I would like to be during a project. This reflection did not only helped the teachers understand our group dynamic but also helped myself reflect.

Fast-forward to the day of DI, where my group and I where ready to put on a show. We had been working hard and where ready to present our presentation. As a decorated veteran for DI I was not working up a sweat, because for us regionals is virtually just practice for provincials. One flaw in our group I was worried about was our lack of preparation to present, we had not practiced run throughs therefor we could have been further prepared to present. Sadly, even though we had used all our class time to the best of our abilities we still did not find the time to crank out some run throughs, that is something I regret. During every DI competition one person is given the privilege to read out the DI pledge to the mass of students and adults. This year I was afforded that very opportunity to read out the pledge at my home court by Ms. Willemse, I was pretty stoked! 

 

After the early morning set up and run throughs, my group felt pretty confident and ready to strike. Yet, it was time for something just as important as the main event, the instant challenge. This instant challenge surprised me because of its difficultly and also because of the confidence that we went in with. This was the hardest challenge I had faced, and my scores represent that well. After what felt like a defeat, my group and I where ready to whip the floor with our competition for the main event. Again we came with confidence in our abilities yet this time reaped reward. My group members and I came out feeling really good about the performance and where excited to see what the judges thought. Sadly, we felt after receiving  our scores that we where not given the high scores we felt we personally deserved. In the end we ended being rewarded a second place ribbon for my age group.

In conclusion I thought my group and I worked very hard to create something we could be proud of and had fun all the while. DI regionals was a blast and I am still excited about my pledge. Thankfully, regionals is not the end of the road for us, soon we will be heading to provincials to show how we have improved. Improvement is the biggest thing we where given lots of critic and we are already improving our presentation to blow the judges out of the water! Provincials here we come!!