Science That Matters

You would think that learning about matter and atoms is common knowledge and is something that everyone should have learned in the fourth grade. Going into this project with that mindset did not serve me well. I instantly realized how much there is to know about something as small as atoms and molecules and how important they are in the universe.

We have just completed an entire project on this topic and my head is overflowing with information. Due to my need to make a little more space in my head for projects to come, I am so exited to share all that I have learned along the way.

This project was made up of three competencies that helped guide us throughout the assignment. Our first competency was all about building a curiosity or wonder towards learning about matter. Although we covered this competency multiple times throughout the extent of the project, I best showed my knowledge through my project-start-mindmap. For this task we were asked to think about any previous knowledge on matter and the changes within it. Luckily I found this topic very interesting so I had accumulated a fair amount of knowledge on the topic. We then revisited the mind map at the end of  the project to ad some of the information we learned as well as the answers to our questions we formed at the start.

I thought that I showed the most growth in the “Evaluating” competency. This one mainly focused on showing an in-depth understanding on the topic at at hand. In this instance we were asked to show our knowledge in the form of a video game or simulator. Starting the game was quite difficult due me having zero programming or coding knowledge. I struggled with this aspect for quite a while.
The final competency was quite challenging and was used many times throughout the work we completed. This competency focused on communicating ideas using scientific language, representations, and digital technologies. After learning all about the KMT, the Atomic theory, mater and everything in between, we were provided with quite the chalenge. Taking advantage of the amazing devices we have at our fingertips, we programmed a game using code that would answer the driveing question:

How is the motion of atoms and molecules related to temperature?
After a few frustrating attempts to code what I pictured my game to look like, I had to compromise and start from scratch. Although it did not go quite as planned, I was able to cover the competency’s outline and curate an immersive tempeture pong game using temperature and a couple of sprites to show my knowledge on the KMT.

From matter to elements to atoms and density I am blown away by all of the mysteries of the universe. Learning this has helped me not only but also understand but appreciate what we learn. Thank you for reading and make sure to comment any questions or comments on this post.

A Long, Long Time Ago.

What an eye opener! It has been nearly 530 years since the last sword stroke of the crusades but after all that I have learned, it seems like was just  yesterday. In a time of constant change, history is being made every day. Just in the past ten years we have made countless incredible advancements to our world. Life in the Middle Ages was not much different. Although the changes being made back then weren’t quite as dramatic as ones today, those times were at an ever changing state.

There were many similarities and differences from now and the Middle Ages and it would take a lot of time to dissect each carefully. That is why our humanities eight class has dedicate an entire unit to learning just that. This project was split into two different competencies that guided us through work we completed.

The first competency was all about comprehending the information we were given, whether it be our final presentation or all of the notes we took to get there.  We began the project by reading a book that took place in the Middle Ages during the crusading period. Although the novel was quite dull, I found that for information purposes, it ended up to be quite useful. The book was split into three readings were we completed a specific assignment for each. I found that all three of the assignments helped me reach the end goal of answereing our driving question:

What was life like in the Middle Ages? How does it compare to today?

The final competency helped us through the entire project and helped me the most to answer our driving question. One of the assignments that we completed in this project was something called a character letter. I found the letter to be the most interesting and enjoyable to complete out what I worked on in this unit. For this assignment we were given a role in the feudal system and were asked to research everything there is to know about it. I was given the role of A great powerful Baron. My research came in many varieties and I even at one point found myself searching the web for what an average barons diet consisted of. Much knowledge came with the research and I learned a lot about the role of someone of great importance in the feudal system in this process. After completing this assignment I reflected on all that I learned. I noticed how some aspects such as the laws put in place and that news and communication would only travel by word of mouth or postage led me to belive that times have greatly change. Although, I also noticed some similarities such as the value of money, the food they ate, and there value of sleep.

With all of the knowledge we gained along the way, we were asked to complete a keynote presentation that showed an example of both continuity and change from the Middle Ages to now. This was the final step towards answering the driving question. The presentation consisted of both of the two competencies in this project. Me and my partner Liam curated a complete answer to the driving question in our presentation with a well though out explanation for each aspect we chose.

Overall,  I enjoyed learning about this time period, and all of my struggles and successes that came with it. I can now heart-fully say that I am great full that the Middle Ages are long gone. Thank you for reading and make sure to comment any questions you may have about this post.


Mid Year Presentation of Learning

So far this year I have not only grown as a learner but as a person. Before I started this post I began to reflect on the work I have completed up to now. I was astonished by how dramatically my work level had improved in such a short time period. I noticed that everything from my grammar to the level that I answered the various competencies, had all changed for the better. I also noticed that my reflection posts began to show more in depth thinking and writing. Not only did the work I complete improve but I would say that I really started to learn how to learn.

I started this year not knowing what lay ahead except for only knowledge of my older brother’s words. I had been informed that there would be a lot of work and a lot of learning, which at first seemed unpleasant. I had formed a fixed mindset and I was not ready to change it. Although, to my luck, we started off the year with the perfect project. We learned all about what a growth mindset was and how we can use it in future learning. Over the course of this project I began to open my mind to new possibilities and approaches to learning. I not only used these skills at school but in my day to day life. This made my life so much easier and stress free. The most important aspect that I learned from that project was my work ethic. I discovered how to not procrastinate, how to organize my life, and how to have healthy work habits.

In Humanities, our previous knowledge of a growth mindset was put to the test. At the beginning of the Media is The Message project, I struggled with the amount of work and found it difficult stay on top of homework. Although, after being informed of an app called Things, I found myself more organized which made it easier to learn. Now, looking back on all of the work I completed in this project, I realize how important it was for my future learning. In the Media is The Message project I experienced my first FAIL during the final reflection blog post. Although I had many mishaps throughout the course of the project, this one experience stood out the most. Due to it being my first reflection post I had no idea of what or how much I should write on the post. Due to my lack of knowledge, I ended up saving it all for the last night and wrote way too much. I realized that I could not repeat that experience and that something had to change. I came to the conclusion that In order for the previous FAIL not to re-occur a few things needed to happen. After I received some very helpful revisions, I curated a step by step process on what I would do differently going forward. First off, I needed to spread out the time I would be working on the post, secondly I needed to read the post outline carefully, and finally I needed to make my post shorter and more direct, making the process less strenuous.

Although we did not complete much work for our PGP class, I would say that I have used the message that it provides on multiple occasions. Our first PGP meeting this year was all about organization on the iPad and getting things done or “GTDing”. We learned how to time block on the calendar app and how to organize our life at school and at home. Even though there was not much time spent on this topic, I find that I use those tools everyday.

In PLP, we strive to take our learning to the next level no matter the subject or topic at hand. Our Scimatics projects are all great examples of this. So far this year we have completed two units in our Scimatics class. Out of the two projects, one in particular set me in the right direction to becoming a better learner. In this project, we learned about the Pythagorean Theorem and light. I incorporated science and math in a creative and exciting way. Due to the fact that this project occurred during the same time period of our winter exhibition, Star Wars was a big part of it. We were put into groups of three for the extent of the project. After the learning was done and we were all mathematicians, we created our final product.  The process consisted of hours of designing and building with several weeks of class time perfecting our masterpieces. I have to say that I would not have gotten close to the level of work we completed without my team. We collaborated and constructed as a team and all worked very hard to get to the end result. 

I have achieved an incredible amount so far this year but if there is one thing for certain its that there is always room for improvement. I decided to make an overall goal for the end of the school year. If I can understand what I need t improve and I know what needs to be done in order to achieve it, I can form a goal. Reflecting on all that I completed so far, I noticed a few big set backs that I can improve to make myself a better learner. I noticed that throughout all of the projects this year, I found myself spending a lot of time doing work at home instead of in the classroom. I realized that problem could be preventable for future projects and that I needed to find a way to eliminate it. After I thought long and hard on how I could change this, I came up with a step by step process that will put me in the right direction for achieving my goal. First off I need to be completely aware of all work during that time period, then I need to record all of my work and their deadlines in Things, after that I will make a hand written schedule for what homework needs to be done and when I will work on it, and finally when it is time to work as hard as I can and try to stay focused. After being aware of the problem and creating a process to solve it, I am ready to form a goal. My goal for the remainder of the year will be to minimize the time spent doing work so I can live a healthy and happy lifestyle. Now, having this goal, I am prepared for whatever lie ahead. This year has been a learning adventure that has just began. Throughout the rest of the year I hope to grow as a learner just as rapidly as before. Thank you for reading and make sure to moment any thoughts or questions about this post.


Star Wars Exibition


What a month! 

I can now say that my brain is 90% Star Wars. I can tell you anything form the plot of the movies to why the Death Stars environment is un realistic when it comes to gravity. I have learned so much and I am so exited to share it with you in this post!

 At the beginning, I Realized I did not have much recollection of the Star Wars movies, even though I had  almost watched the entire series a while back. I was quite worried that my knowledge on this topic would limit me for this project. I vividly remember desperately searching my brain for past knowledge on Star Wars when I first I was informed. The rest of my afternoon after that was spent on YouTube watching five minute recaps of all the Star Wars movies. Although by the second or third day of of the project I became aware that the previous afternoons of reading about what a Jedi was were not needed. If I had only known that I would have plenty of time to dig deep into the Star Wars universe in the weeks to come. 

“Star Wars” has been a cultural touchpoint for over 40 years now. What is it about this franchise that inspires our world to keep making content related to it and spending money on it? During this project, you will learn about the “Star Wars” universe – from movies to lunchboxes – while designing your own inquiry project. Using creative and critical thinking, you will address your inquiry challenge by exploring materials, using tools and equipment, designing and building, developing processes, and communicating the merits of your work. Ultimately you will present this understanding at the PLP Winter Exhibition and share to the world!

View point from Ms. Willemse 

We obtained the knowledge we need through the various fazes of the LAUNCH cycle.


 Throughout the corse of this project we were asked to answer the driving question: “How might I design and build an answer to my own inquiry”. As well as our answer to our inquiry question we completed a science and math project that would also be presented at the night of the Exabition but before we started building much had to be done.

L- look, listen and learn.

The first stage in the LAUNCH cycle was L. This phase was all about Being open to new ideas and to approach your research with an open mind. For the “L” phase we were asked to brainstorm any information about the Star Wars universe that seemed interesting.

The competency for this stage was

Look, Listen, and Learn

  • Engage in a period of research and empathetic observation in order to understand design opportunities

the milestone for this competency was something called a “How Might We Form”. This activity helped narrow down our research an aspect of Star Wars  that may Interest us for our final product.


My How might we question was:

How might we make the environments of each planet more realistic without changing the plot of the movies. 

Since our final product was an answer to a question, we were asked to state a question as a “how might we”. I thought that I  Covered this competency with ease by both reflecting my learning on the milestone and the LAUNCH journal which portrayed my research.

A= Ask Tons Of Questions

The next phase in the launch cycle was the “A” phase. In this phase we asked tons of questions about our topic of interest. This stage was to create a deeper knowledge  Of our topic which will help us in the upcoming phase. The milestone for the “A” phase was The “Project Pitch Form”. I had already had a couple of ideas stirring in my brain but during this phase we were assign our planets. Being assigned the Death Star my original plan would not work as well, forcing me to think creatively to come up with a new conclusion. I grew as a learner due to the demands of having to be flexible in this stage.


Competency Being Assessed: Ask the Hard Questions

  • Identify potential users and their requirements for a chosen a design opportunity
  • Identify criteria for success and any constraints

I found that I struggled With coming up with lots of questions that could improve my knowledge on this topic. coming up with robot questions took less brain power therefore, I ended up with more quantity than quality questions. Although, as we progressed in this phase, my questions started getting deeper and deeper until I had a well formed understanding of my topic.

U= understand the process or problem.


By this phase turn on I began to understand the process of how I was going to create an answer to my inquiry question. In this phase we learned how to use our technology to our advantage to research our topic. We focused on how to use more specific search terms and how to extract the most information in the a productive way.

Competencies Being Assessed:


Understand the Process or Problem

  • Identify and use sources of information
  • Critically analyze and prioritize competing factors, including social, ethical, and sustainability considerations, to meet community needs for preferred futures
  • Choose an idea to pursue, keeping other potentially viable ideas open

Innovative Designer

  • Students use a variety of technologies within a design process to identify and solve problems by creating new, useful or imaginative solutions

The main focus for this stage was the innovative designer competency. This competency focused on using technology to our advantage as I mentioned before. I thought that I covered this competency and even strived to extend. For this competency we exported a copy of our LAUNCH journal. Throughout the journal I used full use of the technology provided to help me design an answer to my inquiry question. This stage was a huge step forward  to our final product.

N- Navigate Ideas

In this phase we were asked to navigate our ideas for our end result. To help me with this I constructed a brainstorm that held all of my possible ideas. I  then made a short video that showed how narrowed down all of my ideas to one.

After three phase of the LAUNCH cycle it was time to come up with an answer to my driveing question.  I decided that I would construct a detailed model of the Death Star with that could realistically hold gravity.


Competencies Being Assessed:

Navigate Ideas

  • Generate potential ideas and add to others’ ideas
  • Screen ideas against criteria and constraints
  • Develop a step-by-step plan that identifies key stages and resources and carry it out, making changes as needed
  • Identify and use appropriate tools, technologies, and materials for production

Innovative Designer

  • Students use a variety of technologies within a design process to identify and solve problems by creating new, useful or imaginative solutions

Once again the innovative designer competency was used. For this phase our video required extensive use of technology and design. For both the brainstorm and the video I thought that I covered this competency tot the best of my abilities. The “N” phase was a crucial step forward towards our end result.

C= Create a prototype

This is when it gets interesting. We’ve came out of L, A, and U phases with enough knowledge start planning out our final answer to our questions, after that we navigated our ideas in to one thought-out solution, and now it is time to start building. After multiple blueprints and brainstorms the assembly process begins!




Competencies Being Assessed:


Create, Make, Design, and Build

  • Explore and test a variety of materials for effective use and potential for reuse, recycling, and biodegradability
  • Prototype making changes to tools, materials, and procedures as needed
  • Record iterations of prototyping
  • Use materials in ways that minimize waste

Computational Thinker

  • Students develop and employ strategies for understanding and solving problems in ways that leverage the power of technological methods to develop and test solutions

The first competency wants to create, make, design, and build. This competency why did not just focus on creating a well developed product, but using materials in ways that minimize waste. Due to my project mainly consisting of recyclable material, I used minimal waste for my end result. It was at this phase that I begin to appreciate all of the previous stages. I started to realize that I would not have been able to create such a functional prototype without the past knowledge. This is when I would say I had grown most as a learner.

H= highlight and fix.

This when we see what went wrong and what we can improve in later learning. The activity we did for this phase was extremely important towards our end result. In this phase I realized how important pointing out mistakes is and that if you can see what went wrong you can almost always fix it. We also learned all about the “FAIL” acronym which is short for First Attempt In Learning.




Competencies Being Assessed:


Highlight and Improve

  • Identify sources of feedback
  • Develop an appropriate test of the prototype
  • Conduct the test, collect and compile data, evaluate data, and decide on changes
  • Edit based on feedback from critiques
  • Iterate the prototype or design idea

For this competency I thought that I showed great understanding on how to make a functional  Accurate answer to my Inquiry question. I did a great job fixing any problems or FAILs that I had alon the way. I thought that I took any feedback to heart and typed my hardest complete my work to the best of my ability.

Well… there you  have it. One month of sweat and tears and I would say it was a success. Even though there was a few set backs in the various phases I would say that the amount I matured as not only a learner but as a person was incredible. Overall the exabition was a great experience and I am exited for the next one this spring. Make sure to comment any comments or questions you have on this post.

Thank you!

Mazer Tag


For the past while my class has been working on a project called Mazer Tag. I know you have no idea what This is so I will give you quick explanation on what this project was all about. “Mazer” is a laser maze which consists of one laser and multiple mirrors that the laser will reflect off of.

This project was part of both math and science due to certain qualities of the process. Our main focus of this project was using triangles to demonstrate the Pythagorean theorem. We learned that the formula for the theorem is a² + b² = c². We also learned that it only works on right triangles with are triangle with a 90 degree angle.

Competencies Being Assessed:

Evaluating: Demonstrate an understanding and appreciation of evidence:

The competency was all about creating a design for the final product using the knowledge that we had gained so far. For this competency we were asked to complete a design for our laser display in an app called Notability. My group completed a very well thought out explanation for our laser display on the imperial Star Destroyer. Below I have added a copy of the design.

Applying and innovating:  Contribute to care for self, others, community, and world through personal or collaborative approaches:

This competency was all about creating our final product and making sure that it was functional. The goal of the project was to use an object from Star Wars to help display a laser maze in the shape of a right triangle while using the Pythagorean theorem. After many weeks of working to perfect our project Kate, Nya and I ended up curating a very functional and aesthetically pleasing project. Below I have added a few pictures to show our progress.

Overall I have learned a lot about the Pythagorean theorem and how it works as well as how lasers work with mirrors and how light is preserved and created. Make sure to comment any thoughts or questions about this post.

Thank you for reading!


Whoa! I cant believe it. After eight weeks of hard work and a little bit of blogging magic, the 2019 student blogging challenge has come to an end. It seemed like just yesterday that I was informed of week one’s “All about me post”. Although this is the last week, there is no time for rest. This week we were assigned three task that mainly focused on reflection.

Pexels / Pixabay


Now that I look back on the challenges from the past eight weeks, I am very proud of the work that I completed. Even after eight full weeks of learning I was improving my blogging capabilities straight to the end. The first of the three tasks that I completed was a survey to evaluate this year‘s challenge.

After the survey was completed and successfully uploaded, we were asked to write a reflection on our participation over the course of the challenge. Out of the eight weeks of the student blogging challenge, I managed to complete all of the tasks we were assigned. Although my blog mostly consists of the student blogging challenge, I have also made a number of posts for school project reflections.

The blogs consisted of:

As I completed task three I came to the realization that this would be the last prompt I will complete in this year‘s challenge. This task was all about how I will use the skills and blogging wisdom that I have obtained to further improve my blog. Although I am sure that I will be required to post many more blogs for different subjects in school, I will definitely try to use my blog to my advantage and construct other blogs of my choice. Through these eight weeks I haven’t connected with many people. Although the few that took the time to read my blog impacted me greatly. In particular I had a teacher from Virginia that stood out with her well written and in depth comment.

Well that concludes this years student blogging challenge. Starting off as a beginning blogger, and this being my first year taking part in the challenge, I have to say that it wont be the last.  I hope everyone enjoyed and learned from the challenge as much as I did. Make sure to comment below what your favourite part of the challenge was.

Bye for now!



This is week seven of the student blogging challenge and this weeks challenge is all about celebrations. The tasks included four prompts about holidays and what they mean to you. Currently here in Canada, the winter is approaching and for my family an important holiday is well on its way. Luckily for me, the first task in this weeks challenge was to write about your family holidays and which of the many you celebrate.

Couleur / Pixabay

Due to The fact that Christmas is just around the corner, what better topic to right about. My family loves Christmas and everything about it. The togetherness, the hot coco by the fire, and most of all: the presents. Although my family dose not have a very unique way of celebrating this wonderful holiday, There has been a few times that our Christmas was not in the norm.

One year our family decided to celebrate Christmas abroad in beautiful Costa Rica. Instead of the normal morning gift opening under the Christmas tree, on Christmas Day, we decided to take a hike to a nearby waterfall and take a swim in one of the surrounding pools. Although this was not the average Christmas Day celebration, I thought that it was a great way to appreciate the holiday in our own unique way.

InfiniteThought / Pixabay

The next task we were asked to complete was the photo spark. This task included a photo that represents your favourite celebration. Since I am already on the theme of Christmas, I decided to use one of my most memorable photos I have taken from this holiday.

For the third task we were required to make a craft that goes with a specific holiday. Although crafts are usually physical, I decided that with my recent knowledge of digital sketching I would make a drawing that best represents the holidays and what they mean to me.

the final task was my favourite out of the four. As you saw from my Going Coastal Post I enjoy writing poems so I was quite exited when I was informed of the components of this task. Below I wrote a short free-form poem about some of my favourite things about Christmas.

The morning sun glistens off of freshly fallen snow,

The sparkling lights of Christmas let off a distant glow,

Me and my brother Share looks of glee,

As we un-wrap presents  under the Christmas Tree,

but as the morning concludes,

And the presents subdue,

A great day of fun is most likely a guarantee.



Portfolio Blog Post!

As you know from my All About Me page I love to doodle and express my thoughts through art.  For the past four weeks our PLP 8 maker class has worked on digital sketching skills to better future learning. In this unit I have learned so many new techniques and skills when using my Apple Pencil.

When I first was informed that our subject focus would be drawing, I realized that I was in for a treat. Although I knew that I was not a talented artist and I hadn’t touched a paintbrush for quite a while, I forced myself to tackle this project with a growth mindset. Starting this unit with this mindset has helped dramatically. Throughout the course of our learning we were asked to complete a variety of art styles using Apple’s Everyone Can Create Drawing book.

Definition of empowerment:  The process of becoming stronger and more confident, especially in controlling one's life and claiming one's rights.

For us as students this question mainly focuses on the idea that “Students leverage technology to take an active role in choosing, achieving, and demonstrating competency in their learning goals, informed by the learning sciences.”


 Skills & Name Art

In the four weeks of learning the many techniques and skills of digital drawing, I believe that I created some very well crafted art pieces and designs. The first assignment we were given in this unit was definitely one of my finest. After getting familiar with the many tool in sketches pro we were asked to illustrate our name using different fonts and patterns that were listed in the book. I thought that it was during this activity when I started to see improvement in my art skills. I also started to realize how much I can use what I am learning to my advantage in other sects of school.

Sketch Noteing

Our next technique that we learned was sketch noting. Out of the five activities we completed, I know that I will use this method the most. Learning skills in sketches pro to express my thoughts through little doodles and eye-catching titles was fantastic, especially knowing that I will use them in the future. Creating this on sketches pro provided much more of a broad colour tool selection which definitely worked to my advantage.

Self Portrait

Our third task was great example of how working on a digital canvas can really make my job easier. Personally, I am not a skilled portrait artist, but with the assist of the layers tool in sketches pro and the ability to match colours, my self portrait drawing turned out quite realistic. After finishing my final product, I was astonished how well it turned out.

My opinion that my portrait skills were minimal, quickly diminished and I started to feel that I had a new found skill for drawing portraits. All because of the advantages that drawing digitally had given me, I started to feel empowered as a learner.

Still Life

Our fourth art piece brought the most challenge and took the most time out of the five tasks. With our experience with layers and our advancing skill level, we were asked to complete a realistic drawing using the pencil and smudge tool in sketches pro. Once again, having the advantage of the layers tool which allows you to trace an image, I felt that I curated a very well made art piece that portrayed both the angle at which the light was shinning and the shadows that the bowl of apples created.


Our last technique that we learned in this project was my favourite to complete and what I thought was my best work. For this activity we started off by being taught about logos and what makes a successful logo. With the help of keynote and sketches pro, I created a surf brand logo that surprised me once again. I made a few different variations using different fonts in sketches pro.

Throughout the course of this project, technology has empowered me as a learner countless times. Whether it be using the layers tool on sketches pro, or discovering the endless knowledge of the digital art tools, these resources have helped me dramatically in this unit. Now that I have these techniques in my repertoire, I will be much more confident in the many projects to come. Hope you enjoyed and make sure to comment your thoughts or any questions below.



its Ryder and week six in the student blogging challenge has finally arrived. This weeks challenge is all about emojis. If you don’t know, an emoji is a small digital image or icon used to express an idea, emotion, etc. Emojis are used everywhere in the world from Asia to the Americas. Emojis are said to be used like a second language in the digital world. I myself tend to use emojis in texting as a lazy way of responding. This weeks tasks were all about getting familiar with these tools and some interesting activities that you can do by using emojis. I decided to only complete the last three tasks due to my disliking of task 1.  My first task that I finished was the emoji guessing game.

For this task we were told to make a guessing game out of emojis that translated to some sort of word. A few ideas for this prompt were:

  • Book title
  • Movie title
  • Book/movie character
  • Food
  • Word
  • Phrase
  • Country
  • Idiom

I decided to make a quiz that depicts famous athletes around the world. Due to my love sports which you probably already know from my all about me post, I thought that this would be a great idea for this task. Below I have added my quiz. Make sure to comment your answers below!

The second task that I completed in this weeks challenge was the emoji math problem. For this prompt we were required to either make a math problem using emojis or solve one online using Due solving similar math problems in the past, I have experience with this prompt. I decided to creat my own emoji math problem using this website. It is quite challenging so put on your thinking caps!

The fourth and final task was definitely my favourite to make out of this weeks challenge. I thought that this prompt was the most enjoyable to construct and turned out to look very good. Our task was to choose between drawing an emoji or to make a drawing out of emojis using I decided to draw the thinking emoji in sketches pro.

Overall I thought that this weeks challenge was one of my favourites so far due to how useful these skills will be in the future. Throughout this weeks challenge I have came to like emojis a bit more and I now know that I will use them much more often. Make sure to comment your thoughts and your answers to the questions above.


Media: A Final Reflection!

Living in a age of change and technological advancements, advertisements are everywhere. From LED billboards to every social media platform you can think of, ads seem to devour our everyday lives. It is clear that what we hear, read, and see influences us on a day to day basis. Media is found everywhere from the local paper to online pop-up ads. It is pervasive and it relentlessly permeates our lives without notice. Through the use of advertising whether it be a print ad, an ad online, or a broadcasted advertisement in the form of radio or visual, we are all impacted in one way or another. Being born in such a media influenced age, I have alway had troubles pondering what life would be like without all of the modern day technology. I found that learning about this topic dramatically swayed my world view on how advertising and the media affects us as people.

vinsky2002 / Pixabay


We started the year learning about advertising and how the media affects our daily lives.  I quickly noticed that there was so much to learn about this topic and started to doubt that we would be able to deeply understand how advertising affects us in the limited time that we had. My accusation was not only completely false, but I somehow managed to become a pro on advertising and what makes a good print ad. Although, before creating an advertisement much needed to be done. We started this unit with a great approach. Our first task was to complete an activity that challenged us to answer the question “how do we dissect text”. 

In order to learn how to dissect text in advertising, we began by watching an advertisement called Welcome Home. This example of media was a commercial that features the Apple Home Pod. The commercial starts with dull colours and creates a sad and melancholy mood. The camera follows a  young woman that is experiencing a hard day.  With the help of the Apple Home Pod, she is able to play music that not only changes her mood, but changes her surroundings.  Everything becomes vibrant and the mood quickly changes to upbeat and exuberant. I believe that the main message of the advertisement was to show how the Apple Home Pod will make you happy immersing you in music and lifting your spirit. I also thought that the message of the commercial was to show that even though you can feel small, the device will make you feel powerful and happy. The point of this video was to trigger the viewers’ emotions and persuade them to purchase this product.


Although this was the beginning of our media journey, I thought that this milestone put me one step closer to answering the driving question. Now with this new skill of dissecting text and discovering its meaning, it was definitely going to be easier to find the meaning of our future assignments. If you want to see the the welcome home advertisement for yourself, press here.

We then learned how demographics and historical perspective affects the process of advertising.  With the use of advertising surveys, I observed how different ages and demographics affect how an ad is perceived.  I completed a survey with my mother and it became clear that we have completely different values when it comes to advertising. After doing the interview, I observed that the main difference between the interviewees’ answers were influenced by past places, events and issues which impacted them in their previous years. For example, my mom, Leslie, said that she does not like buying lots of clothing because she knows they will just end up in the landfill. I believe that she thinks this way because of her years of experience in the world and her knowledge of how manufacturing effects the earth.  Her values have changed as she’s gotten older. Her beliefs and world views about purchasing items based off of ads has changed alongside some of the other people in her demographic. I also learned that what’s happening in the world at the time also affects advertising and its historical perspective. For instance, because of the environmental crisis, advertisements are going to reflect people’s values.




Next, we explored different techniques and appeals.  The exercise that we completed for this topic consisted of matching print ads with the techniques used. I found it very interesting how all ads use techniques in some way.  Some of the common techniques that I found to be most convincing were: were different and unique claim, scientific or statistical claim, the testimonial claim, and the plain folks claim. Below I have added some examples of these advertising techniques. The next topic of focus was the advertising appeals. Advertising appeals are also used a lot in ads everywhere. This tasks exercise was very similar to the one of the advertising techniques. Once again we matched the various print advertisements with the appeals used. I found that the most successful appeals were the reassurance of worth appeal, sense of power, and a sense of roots.

To further our knowledge about the tools of advertising, we learned about the pathos, logos, and ethos persuasion techniques.  Pathos is the appeal to emotion, logos is the appeal to logic and reason, and lastly, ethos is the appeal to character and credibility.  I learned most about these persuasion techniques by dissecting various Nike ads.  In the following chart I identified  which tools were being used for each ad. 


Our next assignment had a bit more time and work involved, but I was up for the challenge. This exemplified how another form of advertising, the news media, influences the appearances of real life people. For this task we were assigned a novel called The Highest Tide. The readings were split into four different sections where we were required to answer the given questions on the novel sheets. I have attached one of the sheets as an example. The Highest Tide was a very interesting book about a little boy named Miles that becomes the miracle of the summer when he finds rare creatures washing up on his local shores. Throughout the book Miles is continually dealing with the media (which in this case was the press) and has to figure out a way he can use the publicity to his advantage. Miles is a perfect example of how the people in his town thought of Miles as special due to the media.There is no question that the media can have both a positive and a negative effect on the way people are perceived.

Lastly, we took all of the knowledge that we learned in this unit and applied it to creating ads for two businesses.  My first ad was for Deep Cove Music.Deep Cove Music.  After multiple drafts I curated a successful ad that used the mostly pathos and sense of roots, and also appealed to credibility and character.  My second ad was for an Oregon business called Nisa’s Thai on our Oregon Coast Field Study.  I found that I learned the most about advertising and what makes the most  effective ad due to the amount of revisions I received. I find that knowing you can always make your work better is quite useful for life overall. In the end, I was satisfied with my ad and felt that it used our previous learning.

With the knowledge I’ve gained, I have a completely fresh perspective on how media influences my daily life. By understanding the techniques and hooks of advertising, I have grown an awareness to help me understand and control the media’s grasp on my life.  It is now clear that what we see, hear, and read greatly affects our beliefs, values, and wants in our daily life.  Make sure to comment your thoughts or any questions on this post below.