Michelle Song's Blog

Bottle Rocket Experiment

by on Nov.10, 2016, under Integrated Science 10, intsci10

Day 4:
Since it was the final day to work on our water rockets, everyone launched the rockets outside to see who’s would go the farthest. Our rocket flew diagonally and didn’t go that far.
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Day 3:
We experimented using our revised rocket but we did not succeed, we used a rubber cork which wasn’t tight enough so the vinegar and baking soda inside the bottle ended up spilling. Instead of flying, the bottle exploded.
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Day 2:
Today we experimented and tried to set it on a chair so it might fly further. We were not successful, similar to the last time the bottle exploded while on the chair.
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Day 1:
Research

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A Midsummer’s Chaos

by on May.16, 2016, under English 9

Oberon and Puck… wait, in a gang!?
A Midsummer’s Chaos is about a gang and two upperclass lovers all facing conflicts over one thing – love.

I worked with Ellie, Jewellee, and Liliane to create a modernized interpretation of Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream. We took parts from Act 2 Scene 1 line 145 to the end of Act 2 Scene 1 (268), and transformed the characters, text and setting to match our version of the play.

Video:

Script: A Midsummer’s Chaos Script

Director’s Notebook: Director’s Notebook


For the making of the director’s notebook, I helped by teammates (Jewellee, Ellie, Liliane) convert the text from A Midsummer Night’s Dream into a modern version. I also helped change some of the major ideas of the story to modernize it and match it to the setting. Because our story was taking place outside with gang members, I contributed in modifying the flower juice to powder-form drugs, and adding slang to match the characters. I also brainstormed ideas for the props, and prepared them. I made sure that I had all the weapons, accessories and extra/background props that matched with all the characters. I took the role of Oberon, also known as O.B. in our project. In this version, O.B. is a bold gang leader who looks for a drug that will affect Titania. I was also responsible for the music. After filming and editing, I found appropriate soundtracks that matched specific scenes. I focused on the mood of the scene, situation, and characteristics of the character when searching for what music to use.

A Midsummer’s Chaos explores the difficulties and chaos love can create. In our rendition of the play, Helena meets Demetrius at a bar and she starts to chase him in the streets. The two characters coming from a wealthy background, both end up in the outskirts – one attempting to run away and the other chasing for her love. The settings mentioned have a big contrast with where the upperclass characters are from, showing how love can make people do anything. As Demetrius is running away from Helena, he shouts, “I don’t love you, Helena! Stop following me! Where is Lysander, and my lovely Hermia? You told me that they weren’t getting married! And here I am, looking for her, going crazy… vanish from my sight and stop following me!” (3.1 40-49). This emphasizes his determination in finding his own love Hermia, and running away from Helena. The fact that he is out in the suburbs shows how much his love is affecting his life, as he is in a location that he would rarely be in. When Helena chases Demetrius and is constantly rejected, she says, “And just because of that I love you more. I feel as though I’m your dog sometimes. The more you ignore me, the more I’m going to fall in love with you. Use me as your dog, and treated me less than a human being, because I know that you will always give me less than what I deserve.” (3.1 62-74). This shows how Helena could not care less about where she is, as long as Demetrius is with her. Helena is so blinded by love, that she ends up going to places she would never go to – the middle of nowhere in the outskirts.

My character O.B. orders his assistant Puck to steal some drugs from a gang, so that he can drug Titania and make her fall in love with another being. This action shows that love can lure people into the extreme. Love is affecting O.B. so much that he is determined to drug his lover and make her fall in love with someone else. He decides to confront his conflicts drugs and humiliation, proving that love will take over one’s mind and push people to dangerous boundaries.

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Surf Through the Music

by on May.08, 2016, under English 9

Music is a great way of conveying the tone or mood of poems. After reading a poem, I looked for a song that described the atmosphere. I then learned how to play the song on guitar. I use precise words and phrases, telling details, and sensory language to convey a vivid picture of the experiences, events, setting, and/or characters. 

“The Surfer” by Judith Wright, is a poem about a day at the beach. The poet utilises imageries to depict a surfer. The song that I chose to cover on the guitar is “Misirlou”, covered by Dick Dale and originally a traditional song from the Eastern Mediterranean region. The poem and the song depicts a very active and intense mood. Wright’s vivid use of visual imagery “He thrust his joy against the weight of the sea;/climbed through, slid under those long banks of / foam—- / (hawthorn hedges in spring, thorns in the face stinging).”, immediately illustrates an upbeat scene of the surfer shooting through the waves. A lot of alliteration is used in the poem “where mortal, masterful, frail, the gulls went wheeling”, which creates a fast rhythm when read, having a powerful impact. The poet also uses repetition in the line, “Muscle of arm thrust down long muscle of water;”. The use of the term “muscle” gives strength and vigour, also implying that the surfer feels a connection with the water. This gives unity to the poem overall and adds excitement. The first note of the song introduces a lively and groovy mood, followed by multiple intense guitar solos. This expresses the poem perfectly because of its uplifting energy it gives to the audience. The usage of fast guitar picking and slides accentuate the electric mood even more. It evokes the sound of crashing waves, giving it a somewhat cool quality that the poem also portrays. When playing the song, the guitar amp settings were set to a high reverb, giving it a spacious sound and having the characteristics of Surf Music. The song is an excellent rendition of Wright’s poem.

The Surfer – by Judith Wright

He thrust his joy against the weight of the sea;
climbed through, slid under those long banks of
foam—-
(hawthorn hedges in spring, thorns in the face stinging).
How his brown strength drove through the hollow and coil
of green-through weirs of water!
Muscle of arm thrust down long muscle of water;
and swimming so, went out of sight
where mortal, masterful, frail, the gulls went wheeling
in air as he in water, with delight.

Turn home, the sun goes down; swimmer, turn home.
Last leaf of gold vanishes from the sea-curve.
Take the big roller’s shoulder, speed and serve;
come to the long beach home like a gull diving.

For on the sand the grey-wolf sea lies, snarling,
cold twilight wind splits the waves’ hair and shows
the bones they worry in their wolf-teeth. O, wind blows
and sea crouches on sand, fawning and mouthing;
drops there and snatches again, drops and again snatches
its broken toys, its whitened pebbles and shells.

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Puck Would Have Been My Best Partner in Crime

by on May.02, 2016, under English 9

He Doth Mirror Me
William Shakespeare’s character Robin Goodfellow (Puck), from A Midsummer Night’s Dream is depicted as a joyful creature that frequently jokes around in a playful manner.

Two shenanigans messing with everyone.
Puck (Robin Goodfellow) and I are very similar, personality wise. When the fairy meets Puck, she asks, “Either I mistake your shape and making quite… /Are not you he That frights the maidens of the villagery…/And bootless make the breathless housewife churn… /And sometime make the drink to bear no barm… /Mislead night-wanderers, laughing at their harm?…/Are not you he?” (2.1.32-42). This shows his infamy in playing tricks on others. Puck pulls so many pranks that others recognize him immediately for what he is always seen doing. Puck’s silly reputation is very similar to mine, because my friends always label me as the “prankster”. I joke around so much that sometimes, my friends know immediately when or when not to trust me. Puck’s mischievous nature really shows as he explains to Oberon, “The shallowest thick-skin of that barren sort,/Who Pyramus presented, in their sport/Forsook his scene and ent’red in a brake;/When I did him at this advantage take,/An ass’s nole I fixed on his head./Anon his Thisbe must be answered,/And forth my mimic comes… I led them on in this distracted fear,” (3.2.13-31). His actions show much of a quick thinker he is when it comes to pranks, and the type of humor he has. I am also a quick thinker when I want to make my friends laugh and play small tricks on them. Most of the pranks I do are very lighthearted and sometimes immature, just like Puck’s.

Although Puck’s description on appearance is rarely mentioned, it is clear that he is a male fairy based on his given pronouns, and position as Oberon’s attendant. He definitely looks very different from me, since I am an average teenage girl with no magical powers. When Puck tells the fairy about his pranks, he mentions, “The wisest aunt, telling the saddest tale,/Sometime for three-foot stool mistaketh me;/Then slip I from her bum, down topples she,/And ‘tailor’ cries, and falls into a cough;” (2.1.51-54). As he mentions himself tricking a family member into thinking that he was a chair, it shows that Puck has supernatural powers. He is able shape-shift himself to whatever and whenever he wants. This is the major difference between Puck and I. He is a magical male creature that can change appearances, while I am an ordinary female human being with only one identity.

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Death Wants to Talk to You…

by on Mar.24, 2016, under English 9

Below is a persuasive speech where I took the voice of Death to persuade humans that he dislikes his job and does not enjoy it. This monologue is based off of The Book Thief, by Markus Zusak.

 

I remember the first time doing my job. I remember vividly, watching her fall. I remember taking her soul, into the dark night. It wasn’t that nice though. Her soul was heavy; it was like inhaling polluted air, as the girl lay still on the concrete floor. I remember how the sky was grey, how it draped over us, suffocating her. How the rubbles crushed the girl covered in red, as still as a statue. It wasn’t nice. It was horrendous. You, humans see me think that I’m here for you; here to capture you, to chase you down. You humans see me as a demon, hunting for souls to destroy, laughing like a maniac. But in fact, I hate my job. I hate it. Abhor it. Detest it. Despise it.

I remember seeing her, that girl. Although her soul was resting in my arms, I stayed, watching her. Observing every little detail. The way she collapsed onto the floor, her body half covered in the debris. Her face was filled with pain. I stayed, watching her until the men came looking for her. Watching them dig through the rubble as it slowly revealed the rest of her fragile body. It was a disaster. It was attacking me like a thousand gunshots to my head. Those are the days where I want to quit my job forever. Wouldn’t you feel the same? Who would want to live in constant pain and dread?

But some days are better than others, filled with clouds like cotton and skies as warm as the sun. Those are the good days. It’s like taking a break from all the darkness and gloom. Sometimes, I like to find and stare at the biggest cloud. The fullest, whitest, fluffiest cloud. I stare at it constantly for hours, for days. I love the way it moves, slowly and steadily. The tranquility brings some peace into my mind and heart, making me forget about those filled with nothing but sorrow and anguish.

They will always remain in my memory, my heart. The many faces of those who lost their loved ones, and those who I had to take their soul from. Including you. I will remember all the agony there was, that we all had to go through. And that, that is the worst part about all this. Every soul that I take and carry away weighs down my heart even more. So please, please stop and leave me alone.

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Plant Growing Project

by on Mar.21, 2016, under Integrated Science 9

March 21

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The science class went to a flower market near the school, and my group (Ethan, Anna, Helena) bought a pot of mint leaves, a bag of soil, and 2 large pots.

 

April 6

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We separated the plant from the soil and pot, and move it to our big one. We then watered it and left it under the artificial light.

 

April 12

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When we returned from the break, all of the plants died, so we removed the dead mint leaves. There was one that was still half alive, so we left it in a cup of water.

 

April 14

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Since we didn’t have any plants left, Mr. King got us new mint leaves. We planted the mint again and gave it some water.

 

April 18

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When we came back from the weekend, the plants were dead again (except for one). We were very upset and we cleaned up the dead plants. However, the plant in that we left in the cup of water was growing shoots, so we planted it in the pot.

 

April 20

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One of the plants were dead again when we returned, so we cleaned everything up and left the one that was still alive. Instead of leaving it in the artificial light, we put it against the windows so that it got natural sunlight. This way, the plant would also get less light because under the artificial light, they received light continuously.

 

April 22

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For the first time, the plant actually survived! We were very happy, and we gave the plant a lot of water.

 

April 26

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The plant was still alive when we came back. We also found a new watering spray that made it easier to use.

 

April 28

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We gave the plant a lot of water today, because we won’t be seeing it for a while. I also noticed small bits growing out from the sides.

 

May 4
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We checked on the plant today and it was fine, so we watered it. *We also sang a lullaby to the plant 🙂 (jk)

 

May 6
ABSENT

 

May 10
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Since our plants were growing slowly, we moved it to the garden outside.

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Aquaponics

by on Mar.17, 2016, under Integrated Science 9

IMG_9170 IMG_9211 IMG_9235 IMG_9238 IMG_9246 IMG_9256 IMG_9172We saw different ways the vegetables grew, and got to taste their tomatoes. We also learned how to assemble the pipes of the aquaponics system.

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Propaganda Poster

by on Mar.15, 2016, under English 9

Screen Shot 2016-03-15 at 10.05.55 PM

Audience: Allied Forces

Purpose: To persuade people of the Allied Forces that Nazis are the enemy with less power.

Techniques: Pathos, Name Calling, Pinpointing the Enemy

 

In the propaganda poster (shown above), I utilised different techniques to grab the audience’s attention.
The informal tone and bias adds pathos to this poster. “Crook” is an informal term used in Australia and New Zealand, meaning ‘bad, unpleasant, or unsatisfactory’. “Kraut” is a derogatory name that was used mainly by the American soldiers during World War II. The use of alliteration helps create a catchy slogan, also stressing the negativity of the Nazis by calling them names.
The dark Nazi figure contrasting from the white background is placed in the centre, making it the dominant element. The Allied Forces flag is placed over the shadow to add bias, and also symbolizing bars and indicating that the Nazis are seen as the ‘Shadow’. The dark figure is seen behind bars kneeling down, with holes and cracks in their body. This implies that the Nazis are the enemy, and that the Allied Forces are more superior.

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Onion Cells

by on Feb.02, 2016, under Integrated Science 9

1 4/0.1 160/-

2 10/0.25 160/0.17

3 100X1.25 160/0.17

Microscope

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Animal Adversity

by on Dec.14, 2015, under English 9

Animals are beautiful creatures.
For a long period of time, animals have been a treasured part of the environment and is taken as a valued member in society, but traditional views in China are conflicting with animal rights.

The three posters below were made to raise awareness of prominent issues that China is facing currently when it comes to animal rights: Dog Meat Festival, fur coats, and circuses. The public awareness posters are mainly targeted towards young adults. The main colors that are used in these posters are red and yellow, which represents the Chinese flag. The red also catches people’s attention, and represents danger. The minimalist design makes the images stand out, and gives a clear and straightforward message. I included statistics to support my statement for al three posters. The first poster is about preventing people from going to the “Dog Meat Festival” that is held annually in Yulin, China. The second poster is about the fur industry. The purpose of the last poster is to inform people about the truth behind circus animals, and how they are treated. The images and colors are very important in these posters, because they deliver very simple yet powerful meanings to the audience. The short and bold statements also have a strong impact on the message these posters are providing.

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