AlanW's Blog

Summer Reading List

by on Jun.02, 2016, under Uncategorized

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5 Steps To Help You Be A Successful 8th Grader.

by on Jun.02, 2016, under Uncategorized

Step 1: The teachers aren’t scary, talk to them if you have a problem. No matter if it’s social problems, or academic topics that you don’t quite understand.


Step 2: Be social. Attend social events, talk to people in real life as well as on Skype.


Step 3: Procrastination is the devil. Seriously, everyone procrastinates, just try to procrastinate as little as possible. Don’t be like me and pull half-nighters the day before the project is due. (To make it worse teachers are always nice and give out an excessive amount of extensions for everything)

download (1)

Step 4: Set high goals, go for that 5! Even though the grading system has changed to have 5 be “extending the standards”, it’s still easily acheivable with most teachers. (Personally I have all 5s for math and french)

Mr Schroeder’s Written Blog Post Rubric (I never got a 5 on this lol)

Step 5: Be in Mr. Schroeder’s class. He turns a boring sleepy history lesson into a standup comedy show.

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by on May.06, 2016, under Humanities

Tibet is a wonderful place, eventhough it’s average altitude is over 5000m, and you could suffer from the lack of oxygen; it’s still surely a place you would want to visit. The amazing geography has forged phenominal landscapes, as well as creating a unique lifestyle for the Tibetan people living there. In this slideshow, you will feel as if you’ve been taken through Tibet in less than 10 minutes. Learn the basics of this region, and plan an actual travel!

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Science Design a Polymer Project: Journal Entry 4: Final Reflections

by on Apr.25, 2016, under Science

Finally, we have presented our product! Prolix was created through our efforts, numerous failures and breakthroughs.

When we were given the goal to create a polymer that can improve a classroom, we had tried to put way too much into a single product. We went through a lot of different ideas, even those as wild as a polymer that leaves a mark on paper, and the mark disappears after an amount of time, essentially making it a magic pen. However, we decided to narrow our polymer down to these characteristics:

1. A sticking material, similar to gluetac, able to stick and unstick easily from multiple surfaces.

2. An erasing material, able to erase almost every kind of writing utensil’s mark off some surfaces.

3. A pen/pencil gripper, easily molded to a desired form on a writing utensil for comfort.

With those characteristics in mind, we set begin creating our polymer. We had decided that we needed a polymer that was sticky, yet stayed together as a whole and didn’t get everywhere leaving a mess. Boogers provided us with the stickiness, and when combined with Gloop, we created something similar to what we had wanted. However, it took us many different trials (4 to be exact) to create a polymer that ACTUALLY worked well.

First trial: Looked really bad, was really hard to stretch, and barely stuck, there was too little Boogers, and too much Gloop. (5G:2B ratio)

Second trial: This trial is like the exact opposite of the first, it was way to sticky, and got everywhere. Too much Boogers, too little Gloop. (2G:5B ratio)

Third trial: In this trial we were able to create a polymer that ALMOST worked as intended, the only downside was that when peeled off surfaces it left a mess. (2.5G:5B)

Fourth/last trial: This time, we finally used a just right ratio of 3.5G:5B to create a polymer that met all of our goals almost perfectly.

For our presentation, we learned that we were the ONLY group to include more than one feature into a single product, and our video was also one of the shortest. We sped up all of our clips and voiceovers to have a light hearted tone in our video to emphasize the “FUN” part of our polymer for a classroom. This didn’t really work well as all of our information sped through quickly and other people were not able to keep up.

If I were to do this project again, I would:

1. Only include one feature in my product, and try to optimize it as much as possible instead of including 3 features and have them only about 2/3 effective.

2. Create a better infomercial, instead of speeding up our clips, we would rather try to trim down our clips, and have a normal pace in talking so it is more comprehendible.

Overall, I feel this project was quite successful. We were able to meet our design goal (somewhat), and learned many things along the way through our failures and improvements.


Screen Shot 2016-05-08 at 5.21.26 PM




Journal 3 <- Journal 4

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Science Design a Polymer Project: Journal Entry 3: Optimizing Prototypes

by on Apr.25, 2016, under Science

Today we started creating and testing prototypes!

We started off with some Boogers that we had created last class. This patch was a particularly sticky and slimy one, and it felt really wet. This obviously doesn’t satisfy our needed characteristics for our goal, so we decided to start getting some Gloop to mix in with the Boogers. During the process, we decided to add 2-3 drops of every color of the different food colorings to create a darkish gray-black color so that after it’s dabbed onto a pen or pencil mark the absorbed material isn’t too visible.


After creating the Gloop, we started merging it together with the Boogers. We used a ratio of around 3:5 with Gloop and Boogers. The merged polymer obtained most of our desired characteristics. It sticks onto most surfaces easily, while easy to peel off without leaving anything behind. Furthermore, we also achieved our goal of it being able to absorb and erase pen and pencil marks as shown in the video below. We can tell that the pen mark on the paper has been mostly removed, and it’s now on our polymer as a mark. That can easily be gotten rid of by simply molding the polymer around.



At this point, I would say that our polymer’s prototype is mostly optimized. We have all of our desired characteristics by creating a combination between Gloop and Boogers. We tried adding some super slime to include some transparency, and look more fancy, but that didn’t really work out as the super slime has completely different characteristics and it was impossible to combine it with our combination. Our polymer has a just right stickiness and stretchiness, which can prove really useful in many different situations.


Journal 2 <- Journal 3 -> Journal 4

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Science Design a Polymer Project: Journal Entry 2: Developing Solutions

by on Apr.25, 2016, under Uncategorized

Today was the second day to work on this project! As stated in the last journal entry, we want a polymer that can stick and peel easily off many different surfaces as well as being able to erase pencil and pen marks.

We want the polymer to be sticky, like boogers. Boogers are kinda stretchy, and sticks to almost everything. It sticks easily, which is what we want, however, it is really stretchy, and really hard to peel off surfaces once stuck on; also, it’s a bit too liquidy. We are looking for a way to solve this, and right now we have come up with the idea to mix Gloop with the Boogers. The Gloop compared to the Boogers is like Earth and Mars. Both are similar yet different. While the Boogers are quite sticky, the Goobers stay as a chunk on it’s own, and breaks off quite easily.

Below are three pictures of the creation of Boogers. Really sticky.

IMG_1149IMG_1150 2IMG_1151

We feel that the perfect stretchy and stickiness of our polymer should be somewhere in-between Gloop and Boogers, which is why we are planning to try to mix the two, and find a right ratio between the two to reach our desired properties.

To test whether or not we have obtained our desired properties, we have come up with a systems of tests:

-Stickiness on Paper (We want to see how well it sticks, and how long in milliseconds will it take to peel off completely without leaving anything behind)

-Stickiness on Table (We want to see how well it sticks, and how long in milliseconds will it take to peel off completely without leaving anything behind)

-Stickiness on Wall (We want to see how well it sticks, and how long in milliseconds will it take to peel off completely without leaving anything behind)

-Pencil & Pen mark clearing capabilities (We want to see how well it can remove a pen or pencil mark just by dabbing on it)

But before these tests, we want the polymer to at least have a decent stickiness and stretchyness by feeling from our hands (so it doesn’t get all over the place or just fall apart)

Journal 1 <- Journal 2 -> Journal 3

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Science Design a Polymer Project: Journal Entry 1: Defining The Problem

by on Apr.23, 2016, under Science

The polymer that we are aiming to create is a polymer which can function similar to a gluetac, and acting as a sticking utility to improve classrooms, as well as having some other features. There are many different things that need sticking within classrooms, whether it’s posting a poster onto the wall, mending a broken stationary. We also plan to have the polymer to be able to be used as a material which can easily remove pencil or pen marks, as well as being able to stick onto pencils or pens to provide a more comfortable gripping position. We plan that by having sticking and mending characteristics similar to gluetac, as well as being able to function as a universal eraser and pen gripper, this can attract students, parents, and teachers to purchase our polymer as a classroom stationary. Moreover, we want there to be more possibilities with our polymer, we don’t want to limit it only to classrooms, and we hope that maybe we can extend it elsewhere.


In general, we want a polymer that is fairly balanced between sticky and stringy, and is easy to attach/remove from most surfaces you can find in a classroom (ie. Whiteboard, wall, wooden table, paper, pencil). We also want this product to be absorbent, meaning that it will be able to clean off most pencil, pen, and marker marks on non-paper materials. Because of this, the polymer needs to be lasting, as most clients would want to use it multiple times before needing to purchase a new pack. Moreover, taking into consideration that the polymer will be absorbing marks from pens and such, we need to make it a deeper color (ie. Gray, brown, black, dark blue) so that it’s not easily “dirtied”. At this point, this is all that we have planned out, and we will need to decide between the three slime recipes provided to create our product.

Journal 1 -> Journal 2

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Compare Poems: Since Unfinished & Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night

by on Apr.12, 2016, under Humanities, Poetry

I annotated two poems, one is Since Unfinished (SU), and the other is Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night (DNGGITGG). These two poems share a common topic: life. In SU, the poet talks about his childhood memories, and how at different ages, he had had different experiences. It was also in a calm mood overall, and the poet seems to take in the fact that he must let time naturally pass. in DNGGITGG, the poet talks about how one must fight and rage, and one mustn’t die a peaceful death. These two poems also share a similar structure of ordered stanzas, with repeats and rhyming.


Above is a Venn Diagram of the two poems. (It’s upside down so you need to right click and rotate twice)

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TPCASTTT Analysis, Since Unfinished

by on Apr.11, 2016, under Humanities, Poetry

Title: Seems as if the author is talking about something that he has yet to finish.

Paraphrase: The author has been writing this poem for a really long time, ever since his childhood with his grandfather. And now he feels as if he is changing into his grandfather, as in getting old.

Connotations: The poet seems to be talking about how time seemed to fly by and he is suddenly like his grandfather without even really noticing.

Attitude: The poet has a casual and neutral attitude.

Shift: The poem was in 5 stanzas, and were structured to repeat the word “since” and his memories of his childhood. Each stanza his recap of his experiences advances in time.

Theme: The author believes that people get different experiences at different ages.

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by on Apr.06, 2016, under Humanities, Poetry

I was able to go to two poem seminars. Out of all of them, I didn’t really know what to choose so I just picked two randomly. The first one that I went to was a type of poem you would use to describe visual arts. The name was really weird and long Greek word, and I can’t really remember what it was. I had chosen a famous painting “Scream”, and described the scene of being stalked and murdered. The second seminar was Inner Landscape. It was meant to be a poem where you speak to your inner self, while utilizing the SAPS (Speaker, Audience, Purpose, Style). I wasn’t really able to write a poem in this seminar as we ran out of time.

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