INP Blog Post #2 (Last of September): Twain vs. Disney

I had recently finished reading the noteworthy book “The Prince and the Pauper” by the renowned American author Mark Twain. This astonishing piece of literature starred an original plotline dissimilar to any other previous novel I have ever read: two boys, both alike in appearance, both born at the same time, meet. The only difference between them is that one of them – Tom Canty – was born in the soiled Offal Court of filthy neighborhoods London, and the other – Edward – was the Prince of Wales, heir of the throne of England, born into the opulence of royalty. By chance, the two boys meet, and with a simple exchange of clothing, one is sent for the first time into the horrors of London’s underworld, while the other is directed to the lives of royalty he could only dream of. Then the book spends the majority of its pages elaborating on the events that occur to the boys, and their struggle to regain their lost identities.

It occurred to me while I was reading that this plotline did not appear as original as when I first started the novel. Then I understood: an adaptation of this novel included a movie starring Mickey Mouse! This 1990 film was also named “The Prince and the Pauper”, inspired by the very book I just read! I had a faint memory of watching a movie about switched identities when I was only around 6 years old. No wonder the plotline of the novel suddenly reminded me of something! Similar to the book, Mickey Mouse, the pauper in the movie’s storyline, is noticed by the prince during his studies because of his rough treatment by the guards. Being brought to his room, the prince is shocked how much alike they looked, which occurred in the book as well. Finally, they talk about their lives and the Prince becomes greatly interested, stimulating them to exchange clothing and experience each other’s lives for a while. Once again, this same exact situation occurred in the book. It is when the intended short experience becomes a catastrophic disaster that the plotline diverges for the two representations: in the book, the king is entangled in Tom Canty’s family affairs, is ensnared in a ruffian gang, is rescued by a great protagonist named Miles Hendon, and is eventually brought back to London. In the movie, the Prince only has one short affair with soldiers, gets captured by the guards at the palace, and is thrown into the dungeon of the palace. The rising action of the representations share some similarity, although the climax is slightly different. The book provided a more complex plotline, with detailed events of each boy’s lives during the time of their switched identities.

It was extremely amusing to realize that an adult novel I read now can remind me of a movie I watched half a lifetime ago. It made me re-read the book in greater detail, to see how the movie adaptation of it differed and how it re-enacted some of the key events. This book was an extremely pleasurable one to read, and I highly recommend this book to others.

INP Blog Post #1: Teacher Calamity

I recently finished reading the extremely interesting and deep “To Kill a Mockingbird” by Harper Lee. This American classic, aside from being a symbol of American literature, is open for “countless ways of interpretation of the deeper meaning and provides a myriad of opportunties for connections”, according to the New York Times. I wholeheartedly agree to the second component of that quote: I had a plethora of connections just within the exposition of the novel. It will be of my great enjoyment to share and elaborate on just one of the connections I made with the characters and setting in the first 27 pages.

The connection that I would like to share is the uncanny relation between Mrs. Caroline, Scout’s first teacher during her first year at school, and my fifth-grade teacher Mr. Cooper. As a newcomer into Maycomb county, Mrs. Caroline was ignorant with all of Maycomb’s intricate traditions and mutual understandings. As a result, Mrs. Caroline was largely unsucessful in effectively controlling the class, and her actions were laughed upon by every student. For example, it was of common knowledge that the Cunningham family was financially pitiable, and that the only way they paid for goods and services was through a barter system. Their actions slowly became acceptable within the Maycomb community, but Mrs. Caroline wasn’t aware of it. Walter Cunningham, a boy in the Cunningham family, had classes with Mrs. Caroline. Ignorant as she was, Mrs. Caroline persisted in offering Walter a quarter for lunch downtown, which humiliated Walter greatly because of his inability to pay her back. This, in turn, embarrassed Mrs. Caroline, and she felt extremely pressured to learn all the ways of Maycomb in order to make it a beneficial experience for all students. In fact, the pressure was so great that Scout found her “…with her head buried into her palms and crying hysterically, her back trembling with each gargantuan sob.” (page 31).

This experience Harper Lee outlines vividly is reminisce of an experience I had in Mr. Cooper’s classroom. Although it didn’t get to a point where Mr. Cooper let loose a barrage of waterworks, it did embarrass him greatly. We had a student who was autistic, and his speech was uninhibited by any inhibitions. During the second class we had with Mr. Cooper, that student stood up and said in a brash voice: “Mr. Cooper, I don’t understand why I can’t say s***, because I like the sound of it!” This remark made a profound impact on Mr. Cooper, as we watched his face flash through the spectrum: from normal to red to purple to violet. Long story short, they fired phrases at each other unsuitable to be repeated in this blog post, and resulted in the student crying hysterically, and Mr. Cooper apologizing profusely for not “understanding his condition”. We all felt a pang of sympathy for Mr. Cooper, as he was new that year and started off on the wrong foot.

If you think this connection is elaborate and complicated, briefly contemplate this fact: I experienced four of these just in the exposition! This intriguing novel encourages deep thinking and connections, and I really enjoyed experiencing all those throughout the course of reading it.

Romeo and Juliet

Act 1, Scene 1

Two families: the Montagues and the Capulates have always shown hostility and aggressiveness towards each¬†another. In a bustling market, two¬†Capulat servants picked a fight with two Montague servants, with the fight spinning out of control and involving large amounts of members from both families. Eventually, Prince Escalus, the prince of the region, comes in and ends to fight, declaring that if any more fighting occurred, the people¬†responsible for the fight will be executed. Meanwhile, in a search for Romeo – a Montague – ¬†reveals that he was a bit “lovesick”, wandering around the proximity of the town.

Act 1, Scene 2

Paris, a man around his twenties, goes to Juliet’s father to ask if he can marry Juliet. Her father states that Juliet is still too young, only 13 years old, and says that first Paris must get Juliet to fall in love with him. Juliet’s father recommends Paris to attend the mascarade ball that was going to be held that evening, and he invites many guests.

Act 1, Scene 3

Juliet’s mother summons Juliet to have a conversation about potentially marrying Paris. Their bawdy maid, who has raised Juliet like her own, brings Juliet into her mother’s bedroom. There, she tells Juliet that girls younger than her are already supporting families, and asked Juliet to get a move on relations. When asked about her position in loving Paris, Juliet said she will think about it and decide later.

Act 1, Scene 4

Romeo and a bunch of his friends are heading to the mascarade party, but Romeo is reluctant to attend because he dreamt of consequences and he had the overhanging feeling that something bad is going to occur. However, his best friend, Mercuto, who is of the bawdy and rude kind, teases Romeo and goes on about a story of “Queen Mok”, and gets so involved that Romeo has to literally shake him out of it. Afterwards, he starts off to the party, but with the feeling that he is going to meet is fate there.

Act 1, Scene 5

Romeo and his friends arrive at the mascarade, and is greeted by Juliet’s father. The servants were clearing the remains of the meal, and the musicians were tuning. Shortly after this, a dance occurred, and Romeo saw Juliet and was instantly captured, saying that it was his first taste of “true beauty”.¬†However, Tibult, Juliet’s cousin, recognises Romeo as a Montague, and calls for his sword. Juliet’s father declines him of his inclinations and prevents him from doing anything, making Tibult extremely vexed. Meanwhile, Romeo and Juliet located each other and held hands, before Romeo says the famous line “let lips do what hands do” and they kiss. Afterwards, when the guests were leaving the party, they each learn the true background of each other, and is extremely shocked by the news.

Act 2, Scene 1

On the way back home, Romeo separates from the group and jumps over the fence of the Capulat mansion, hiding in the bushes while Mercuto and Romeo’s other friends shout his name. They all had a little too much to drink, so they were yelling at the top of their lungs and walking awkwardly. Romeo waits until they pass and slowly exit the bushes.

Act 2, Scene 2

Romeo makes his way across the garden and hears Juliet declaring her love of Romeo to the night sky, and saying that she only wished that Romeo did not have the title of a Montague. In doing so, she says the famous phrase “what’s in a name?”. Romeo then surprises her by jumping out of the bushes and offering to change his name in order to get married. Juliet fears for his life, as if he is found he will be killed. However, they exchange vows and Juliet arranges to send a messenger to confirm the time and place to get married. After that, they part and Romeo heads home.

Act 2, Scene 3

In this scene, Romeo goes to Friar Lawrence, the priest of the church, to make arrangements for the wedding. However, Friar gets mad at Romeo, saying that he is in love with Rosaline, another girl. However, he ultimately decides to let Romeo and Juliet exchange vows, thinking that it will improve the relationship between the two families.

Act 2, Scene 4

Back home, people were wondering where Romeo was, as he did not come home at all last night. Romeo is then spotted by Mercuto, who teases him about love. Right then, the nurse of Juliet appears, and Mercuto and his friends tease her as well, calling her rude names. When they flee, the nurse calls them names, before entering a church. Romeo requests that she commend him to Juliet, and the nurse agrees.

Act 2, Scene 5

The nurse returns home, while Juliet was complaining that she was taking too much time. When the nurse arrives, Juliet tries to find out what Romeo said, but the nurse was a bit tricky and kept complaining about her old age. In the end, she informed Juliet of the current situation, and Juliet is extremely delighted.

Act 2, Scene 6

In this scene, the final scene in act 2, Romeo arrives, and Friar tells him to “love moderately”. However, when Juliet comes, Romeo disregards that order, with extravagant kissing and loving words, all while a poor Friar was trying to keep them apart. After that, Friar takes them to get married.

Act 3, Scene 1

This scene shows Mercuto being warned not to pick a fight with the Capulots, but he disobeys that and fights Tibult, who enraged him by teasing Mercuto. Mercuto was wounded by Tibult despite Romeo’s efforts to stop the fight. Mercuto dies, and made Romeo extremely enraged. who chased down Tibult and challenged him. In the ensuing sword fight, Tibult is stabbed by Romeo, and dies. The scene ends with Romeo’s friends having a hard time getting him out of the scene.

Act 3, Scene 2

Juliet, after hearing the nurse bawl about the murder of Tibult, first speaks rash of Romeo, accusing him of killing her cousin heartlessly. Later, she defends Romeo, saying that he defended himself from a man that would otherwise kill him. In the town square, the corpse of Tibult is brought to the prince, and Tibult’s side of the family tries to get the lord to execute Romeo.¬†Romeo is at home throwing a big tantrum and attempts to kill himself, but Friar Lawrence¬†stops it.

Act 3, Scene 3

Juliet’s nurse suggest that Romeo spends his last night with Juliet.That’s what he does, and this scene shows their night together. In the morning, Romeo leaves to be exiled to Manuta, but Friar Lawrence still has hope that Romeo will be able to return someday.

Act 3, Scene 4

This scene starts with Juliet crying, and her mother saying that she is grieving too much for Tibult, thinking that she was crying for him. Juliet’s mother tells her some good news that will supposedly cheer her up: she is going to marry Paris. However, Juliet refuses to marry Paris, declining fiercely. Juliet’s mother informs Juliet’s father, and he becomes instantly enraged. He threatens to kick Juliet from the family if she does not marry Paris, and Juliet goes to her mom for help. However, Juliet’s mom brushes her off as well, and finally the nurse convinces her that Paris is much better than Romeo, stating that he is better-looking. Juliet decides to go to Friar Lawrence for advice, and if that will not help, she was going to commit suicide.

Act 4, Scene 1

In this scene, Juliet¬†goes to Friar Lawrence to meet Paris, and Paris teases her a little to see if she has affection for him.¬†After he leaves, Juliet says she’ll rather die than marry Paris. Lawrence fabricates a plan to let her skip the wedding and meet up with Romeo again: before the wedding day, she is to drink a drug that will make it seem like she is dead, with no pulse and no breath for 42 hours. Friar is going to write a letter to Romeo to explain the current situation, and get him to come back within the time period.

Act 4, Scene 2

Juliet goes to her father and begs for pardon for disobeying his wishes, telling him that she will marry Paris. Her father is so delighted that he moves to wedding to the next day. Juliet persuades her mother and nurse to leave her alone and picks up the vile containing the poison, but is too terrified of visions of the grave to drink it. However, she prays for love to give her strength and consumes it.

Act 4, Scene 3

At the beginning of this scene, Friar Lawrence hands the letter to Romeo to a messenger with a donkey. Meanwhile, the nurse of Juliet tries to waken her for the wedding but is extremely distraught to find her seemingly dead. Juliet’s father and mother and nurse go wild with grief, and arranges a funeral. At the funeral, Romeo’s servant Balthasar sees Juliet dead, and runs to his horse and gallops towards Romeo. He passes the messenger with the donkey.

Act 5, Scene 1

In this scene, Romeo receives Balthasar’s bad news, and rushes on his horse to Verona. On the way, they stop at a pharmaceutical, and Romeo purchases poison, intending to join Juliet in death. The scene ends with him standing in front of Juliet’s grave.

Act 5, Scene 2

While Romeo is in front of the grave, Paris, who had promised to visit Juliet’s grave every night, attacks Romeo, and Romeo kills Paris in the fighting. While dying, Paris requests to be laid beside Juliet, which is what Romeo does. Romeo then kills himself to join Juliet in death. Meanwhile, Friar Lawrence arrives at the grave, and Juliet wakes up. Friar tries to convince Juliet to leave the grave, as he does not want to be seen there, but she refuses, seeing Romeo dead beside her. Friar flees, and Juliet kills herself with a dagger after uttering the famous phrase “oh, happy dagger!”. In the¬†final scene, the bodies of both Romeo and Juliet are laid before the prince, who declares that all of the members of both families are punished because of their war and their inability to cooperate. So ends Shakespeare’s famous Romeo and Juliet’s tragedy.

 

Visual Representation Presentation

Visual Representation Rubric

Act 3 Scene 1 Performance

Romeo and Juliet Frame Analysis Practice 1

Romeo and Juliet Frame Analysis Practice 2

Frame Analysis Practice 3

Frame Analysis Practice 4

Frame Analysis Summative Graded

What I Learned from the Perfect Mate Activity

I learned a lot from the Perfect Mate Activity, which required students and parents to show what traits they wanted for a lifelong “mate”. The traits I listed was the same or some form of what my parents wrote, showing that I thought along the same track as them. I learned that finding a “perfect mate” according to a parent’s views will be an immense task, as my parents¬†wanted independence, sweetness, easy-going, caring, loyal, sincere, sympathetic, well-mannered, well-educated, optimism, humour, and smartness all in one person. From this, I learned that the expectations of parents are too high, and only a lucky few can manage to fulfil these criteria. Thus, when it comes to selecting mates, the criteria imposed by parents will severely lower the range of the potential mates we will choose.

I also learned that the criteria we set up ourselves were more to our liking, and we disagreed with some of our parent’s ideas. Thus, there might be situations where we, the students, might select a mate that is controversial to our parents’ expectations. In the end, I learned that it is extremely hard to select a mate with a parent’s consent, it is either lacking some major expectations of the parent or contradicts some of the parents’ criteria. Case in point: are there really a lot of mates out there that is logical and smart, yet possesses interesting hobbies while being able to cook and compassionate but also smart and sporty? The answer is a flat-out no. In order to determine that these traits are present within a mate, we will have to get to know them, and that is too time-consuming and tiring, and sometimes awkward. Thus, I conclude that I learned finding a perfect mate that matches up to your parents’ guidelines is¬†close to impossible.

Champion! Project Reflection

The Champion! Project has now come to a close, and the days of creating visuals, practicing speeches, and making presentations for a famous person end as well. However, the lingering experiences are mostly enjoyable, with the most prominent one the Gallery Presentation on March 9. It was an opportunity to show an audience all that I had learned about my famous¬†person, and further deepen my understanding to a group of people. The Gallery presentation was a largely beneficial and memorable experience for me. Learning was another major component of the Champion! unit, and effective learning aids differed among my classmates. Personally, I believe that the act of creating visuals such as timelines, Facebook profiles and maps were the best of the tools for understanding my person and teaching skills to me. Critical thinking was a major assessment category in all of these visual’s rubrics, stimulating us to think thoughtfully. The visuals were also an opportunity to exercise our creativity, thus the “communication” section of our rubric. The act of creating visuals were the best learning tools I encountered in the project.

I had met many challenges throughout the course of the Champion’s project, and some of them had been extremely intimidating. First of all, acquiring all the information needed to complete journal entries, a nomination letter, a free choice, and countless other pieces was painstaking. There was a plethora of sources to choose from, and not all of them were reliable. Thus, I spent many hours cruising the internet, trying to gather necessary information. Also, acquiring a costume for the press conference and Gallery presentation was also challenging, as the attire available in stores required mixing and matching or was not available in my size. Finally, the preparation for the press conference required a lot of time devoted to practicing ALL questions, and not knowing which questions you will be asked. These challenges were all intimidating for me, but I overcame them.

If given the opportunity to complete this project again, I will remove the nomination letter and replace it with another free choice, as this could stimulate a greater amount of critical thinking, along with creativity. The teachers should also incorporate a higher standard for free choices, along with a greater selection of potential end products. This project taught four key concepts: creativity, collaboration, compassion, and resilience. These skills are greatly beneficial to an individual, and this project reinforced these concepts. We learned about a character who possessed at least a few of these traits, and I, and I’m sure I’m not the only one, acquired inspiration from these individuals. The necessity to not back down in the face of failure, the necessity to express compassion to others around you, the creativity required to become an innovator, and the ability to work well with a group of people to develop an outstanding end product. The Champion! project taught me to possess these four core values, an extremely beneficial experience.

Milton Hershey Champion Person Project

This is a project about Milton Snavely Hershey, the creator of the famous Hershey’s Chocolate Company. This project focuses on four properties present within him: resilience, compassion, creativity, and collaboration. When Hershey first contacted the business world, his first two business failed miserably, losing the trust of both banks and relatives financially. However, Hershey scraped up enough cash by himself to start his first successful company: The Lancaster Caramel Company. Also, Hershey’s compassion toward his employees led to the construction of a town called Hershey, Pennsylvania, which included houses for Hershey’s employees to live in. Furthermore, it also had parks, recreational facilities, and even a sports stadium, along with a trolley system for transportation. Similarly, the blueprints for the various buildings and factories were drawn by none other than Milton Hershey himself, showing great amounts of creativity. Finally, countless treats were developed through Milton Hershey conferring with candy experts, treats such as the world-famous Hershey Kiss and Milk Chocolate with almonds treat. Milton Hershey possesses all four core values this project focuses on.

 

 

 

Free Choice Video Link:

 

 

  Posted in LA SS

Quarter 3 LA Goals

1/8/2015

Reading Goal: I will read all of the genres in the Reading Log.

S (Specific): I will read a book in each genre in the Reading Log.

M(Measurable): The progress will be reflected in my Reading Log, with an entry under every genre.

A (Actionable): I will go to the library to search for books of my level in a different genre every two weeks.

R (Realistic):¬†I could ask my friends for recommendations of books in genres I didn’t contact as much and check them out at the library.

T (Timely): If I finish a book in 2 weeks and get a new one from a different genre consistently, I will have contacted all of the genres on the Reading Log by the end of Quarter 3.

 

Writing Goal: I will increase the amount of time I spend revising and editing during a piece.

S (Specific): I will increase the amount of time I devote to revising and editing.

M(Measurable): The progress will be reflected in the conventions and word choice areas, where revising and editing will make an impact on its grade.

A (Actionable): I will research different ways to revise and edit, while consulting my PET (personal editing toolkit) more often during the process.

R (Realistic): I could update my PET based on the feedback received from my teacher to further enhance my piece.

T (Timely): If I update my PET and and practice scrutinising every detail in my piece for the slightest problem, I will make longer revision sessions possible by the end of Quarter 3.

 

Goals Presentation Quarter 3

Quarter 2 Goals

Q2 Work Habits Rubric

11/4/2014

Reading Goal: To increase the time I spend making predictions and inferences while reading.

S (Specific): I will devote more time I spend making predictions and inferences while reading.

M(Measurable): I will have an increased amount of post-it notes inside a book when I am done with it, as I always write down my thoughts on them.

A (Actionable): Every time I reach a new chapter, I will stop and reflect on the previous one and write down my thoughts.

R (Realistic): I could do more research on how to make such connections while reading a book, and practice them on smaller passages.

T (Timely): If I am consisted on reflecting back on preciously read chapters, by the end of Quarter 2 I will have made my goal a habit.

 

Writing Goal: To increase my vocabulary and make better choices when choosing words to describe things.

S (Specific):¬†I will increase the amount of words I know by reading more, and looking up words I don’t know more frequently.

M(Measurable): By the ed of Quarter 2, I should see an increase in the grade of “Word Choice.”

A (Actionable): I will look up unknown words in the dictionary more often and read harder books.

R (Realistic): I should study vocabulary lists in my free time and maintain my Wonder Words Wall.

T (Timely): By the end of Quarter 2, my “Word Choice” grade should increase to ME+.

 

Q2 Goals Presentation