One Day 2017

Ashley and I decided to create something that could bring convenience to Middle School students. We each created created computer bags that fit both computers and folders inside. I successfully completed sewing two computer bags, one as a test to see if there are any mistakes I could fix from the design, and a final one. One of our challenging problems was that we couldn’t measure the width of the computer bag correctly, the line we drew was slanted because the fabric was so big. Our impact was that we had improved our sewing skills, Ashley improved her hand sewing skills and I improved my sewing machine skills. We will still most likely continue to sew computer bags and probably start sewing miniature items. Ashley and I will want to continue sewing for One Day next year. We want to make miniature items, like miniature pillows, miniature clothes, etc. We could possibly donate those along with dolls so that little girls who cannot afford dolls can get dolls and accessories that come with it.


Photo of the final result:





Giver Reflection – Remembering Pain

Jonas wants people to be able to feel pain. I agree because pain is important. It gives you more emotions and expands on them. For example, without pain, there would be no love.
Moving here from Switzerland was emotional because I couldn’t see my friends every day anymore and I missed my old home where I made my first memories. I missed my old apartment there and the country just in general. I learned to move on and make new friends, but also remember my memories and treasure them. All the mistakes I have made during my life and friends I have made are extremely valuable and important to me. I would never want to take away those memories.

Endangered bonobos

Endangered bonobos

Sophia Yan


BOOM! The crackle of the gunfire shot across the dark morning sky.

“Run!” People screamed horrifically as they scampered out of their little huts. Claudine Andre instantly grabbed her rusty notebook, a small, sharpened pencil and a bag, and then scrambled out of her hut. As she swayed her bag over her shoulder, she took a quick last glance of the sanctuary bonobo vet she used to visit everyday when she was little, then ran away, into the morning darkness.


War had started not too long ago. It was really dangerous, many people died. Claudine and her mother moved to Kinshasa, Congo when she was little and lived there ever since.

“The war in Congo is extremely dangerous,” Claudine’s mother had told her, as she ruffled Claudine’s dark, long hair. “You should leave Congo when it gets worse.”

Claudine replayed that memory in her head and gave a deep sigh. She started trudging behind everyone. Her shoes tore and was worn out. Beads of cold sweat rolled down her red cheeks. She wiped her forehead. Her head was spinning. Claudine finally reached the hectic, city, after an exhausting, long five-hour walk. Claudine found a taxi that could take her to the airport. Her mother had booked her a ticket to fly back to Belgium. Claudine slowly rummaged through her bag.

“Hello, I’m flying to Belgium.” Claudine said to front desk woman.

Claudine sat down next to a rather plump man that read a newspaper. He wore a smooth blue and black striped tie, and a dark suit. His dark hair was slicked to the back of his head and face was sleepy.

“Hello,” Claudine said kindly. He glanced at her for a split second, lowered his round glasses and went back reading his newspaper. She peered at the newspaper, thinking of something to say. “How are you?” That man gave her an icy stare. He folded the newspaper neatly and left it on the chair he sat on. Then, he took his suitcase and walked away. Claudine stared at him as he walked away and shook her head. She picked up the newspaper left on the chair and started reading. This was the article that caught her eye:

Can anyone kindly volunteer to help The Sanctuary of Congo to help save bonobos? This is extremely important! Thank you.

Claudine sat there for a while, thinking of what she should.

“This is the last call for anyone flying to Belgium, at Gate 13. This is the last call for anyone flying to Belgium, at Gate 13.”

Claudine hesitantly stood up and carefully placed the newspaper in her bag preventing it from tearing, then she walked to the front desk, and out of the airport. As she slowly walked, she regretted it more. She missed the crisp; orange autumn leaves, of Belgium. And jumping in the soft leaves with her friends when she was little. She also missed Mrs. Victoria’s delicious, warm, crunchy apple pies. She remembered her favorite part, which made her mouth water. The sticky, gooey, sweet apple filling.


“Claudine! Are you crazy? The war is getting worse in Congo!”

“Sorry mother, I really should help the bonobos. They are endangered!”
Claudine said crossly into the phone.

“You don’t understand?” her mother yelled. “Safety first.” Her voice suddenly softened.

“I already confirmed!” Claudine’s face reddened with anger. “Mother, you know how much I love animals! I have dreamed to help the animals in need.
“Claudine, do you understand me or not? It doesn’t matter if you confirmed, you can just quit it! Also, I agree with you, you should follow your dreams, but safety first,” Mary-Ann spat.

Claudine slammed the phone to her desk. A tear rolled out of her eye and down her red face. I must help the bonobos! A faint voice called in her mind. She gazed out of her window into the blazing sunlight. “I can do this,” Claudine whispered. As she walked closer to the taxi, her feet sank into the dry grass, not wanting to let her go. Claudine worked hard keeping the bonobos safe and looking for them. But she realized that she had made a huge mistake. The job was tougher than she had expected. Claudine wanted to quit so desperately. One afternoon, she went out with other workers to look for bonobos.

“There’s a bonobo!” Someone shouted pointing to a tree.

“I’ll get it,” Claudine said bravely. “Get ready to bring the bonobo back to the sanctuary.”

Claudine slowly climbed up the rough tree. Her fingertips kept on slipping on the rough tree skin. “This is hard,” she stammered, slightly shaking. Finally as she reached the top of the tree, she suddenly heard the sound of gunfire shoot across the sky toward her. Claudine tried to get down, but fustratedly; she remembered something, which was her deepest fear: heights.

“Help!” Claudine pleaded. Everyone sprinted away, leaving her by herself and face to face with the bonobo. Claudine turned around desperately looking for a way to get down. The bonobo gave a huge screech. Claudine held onto the tree. Blood splat all over her hands. The bonobo was shot? Claudine got really petrified. There is no other way for her to get down unless She closed her eyes and let go of the tree. Then, she staggered back to the sanctuary.


Claudine lay down. “I’ll be right back,” the nurse called. Congo is really getting extremely dangerous. Claudine thought. Maybe mother is right. I should go back to Belgium. Mother should be always right. She knows best and is the person that cares about me most in this world. Should I have listened to her?

Because of Kaitlyn

Because of Kaitlyn

Sophia Yan                                                                                                        October 26 2015


I fell deeper and deeper as darkness surrounded me. I couldn’t breathe…


It all happened on a gorgeous, warm, sunny day in Japan. I immediately springed out of bed and drawn the curtains apart, so the sun could shine in. Then, I hopped onto Kaitlyn’s bed and screamed,

“HI KAITLYN!” in her face.

“I can’t wait! So excited!” I yelled doing my happy dance around the room.

“Get up now!” I ordered, as I changed into my favorite waterproof clothes.

“What time is it?” Kaitlyn asked.

“7:00am,” I answered. She groaned.

“Let me sleep, ok?”

“We’re going fishing like in 3 hours,”

“Please! I want to play Tic Tac Toe with you,” I begged her

“Go away you annoying brat, I’m trying to sleep,” she added as she pulled the covers over her head.


I blinked back my tears furiously as I slowly walked back to my bed. I put on my pajamas on top of my waterproof clothes and pulled the covers over my head too.



“It’s 9:04,” Kaitlyn informed.

I didn’t realize how tired I was. Mainly because I was too eager to go fishing! I really did sleep a long time. Kaitlyn was dressed up in her blue waterproof clothes. She had her dark brown hair done in messy braids. My parents and her parents met us downstairs and we had breakfast. After breakfast, we took our fishing supplies, sun cream, hats, (Kaitlyn’s mom packed cookies) and headed to the bus stop. Once we got off the bus, dad rented an ancient like boat and we went fishing!


Kaitlyn’s dad taught us how to fish. I eventually got really bored and climbed to the side of the boat watching fish pass by. Kaitlyn amazingly was not bored. She never gave up!

“Look at the fish!” I gushed, pointing at a dead fish.

“It must have had a great old life because it is smiling!” I found a stick floating in the middle of the lake, and started poking the fish with it. I leaned closer to see it.

“I CAUGHT A FISH!” Kaitlyn yelled. I turned around to see, but her arm hit my face, then suddenly there was a huge SPLASH! I couldn’t breathe… I tried to scream but I choked.

I opened my sore eyes and saw the dead fish above me. What’s going on? I wondered. What just happened? I felt confused. I realized I fell into the water. Without thinking about anything else, I quickly swam up to the shadow of a boat. “Are you ok sweetie?” mom asked as she draped my towel around me. “I’m fine, thanks. But what happened?” I asked shuddering.

“Um,” Kaitlyn started nervously, “I think I pushed you into the water.” “WHAT?”

“By accident,” Kaitlyn stammered.

“I’m really sorry! I got really excited and proud, I went a little crazy and waved my arms around, air punched, jump-“,

“It’s ok,” I said gloomily, interrupting her. I was proud but also kind of jealous. Kaitlyn reached into her bag and grabbed a cookie.

“Want some?” Kaitlyn asked breaking the cookie in half.

“Sure, thanks!” I responded cheerfully.

As we were munching the yummy chocolate chip cookies, I said

“Next time, if you did something that made you really proud, please don’t go crazy!” We both laughed.

Water Crisis

Sophia Yan                                                                                                            October 7, 2015



Have you ever thought or asked yourself am I lucky? There are people out there that are suffering or wanting to just get at least one glass of water that is clean and fresh.


Firstly, while we can just reach out for our water bottle right on our desk sitting there, which takes only seconds and surprisingly, many people in Africa do not have access to clean and safe water. According to, “Women and children usually bear the burden of water collection, walking miles to the nearest source, which is unprotected and likely contaminated.” This illuminates how they have to walk such a long way just to get unsafe, dirty, contaminated water.


Secondly, our water is safe and drinkable. Many people in Africa have got sick and died because of the dirty water. It is extremely shocking! According to Newsela, “For nearly 800 million people on this planet, getting sick from water is a reality. They don’t have access to safe, clean water.” “Many people say sipping water, brushing your teeth and taking a shower are good for you. In other countries however, these things can be dangerous. Sometimes they even make people deathly ill.” “One major risk of drinking dirty water is diarrheal disease. The World Health Organization (WHO) reports that the disease kills 1.5 million children every year.” These statistics illuminate how dirty water can really affect our lives and kill people.
Finally, we don’t need to fight for water. We just pay the amount of money for the amount of water we want. It’s not the same thing for Sudan, the Dinka and the Nuer tribes. According to Long Walk to Water, “No one it seemed, was sure Nuer land ended and Dinka land began, so each tribe tried to lay claim to the areas richest in water.” This illuminates how important water is to many people because they even fight for it.


Therefore, our world has a water crisis. But we can change it. We can help donate money for them to build wells to make safer, and cleaner water at every village. Girls and women won’t have to walk as far as they did to get water. So, girls can spend more time learning at school and women can spend more time cooking and doing a woman’s job. Don’t just sit there! We can make a huge change in this world to help make it better!

Humans Will Behave Badly Without Laws

Sophia Yan                                                                                                  September 14, 2015

Humans will behave badly without laws


I disagree with humans will behave badly without laws. I believe that if laws weren’t invented, our world would still be a great place and nothing too big would go upside down.


Firstly, at school, we don’t have any laws, but we usually try to pay teachers and other students with respect because it’s a kind thing to do to other people. For example, at school, most people don’t do bad things. We try to be kind to one another, we try to make friends and learn new things everyday (because the purpose of going to school is to learn).


Secondly, a long time ago, there weren’t any laws, and it wasn’t very chaotic or messy. Most things went fine. For example, a long time ago, people didn’t have keys or locks for their doors at home but not a lot of people stole things compared to these days. Also, these days, people somehow have more bad ideas than when there weren’t any laws, so that’s why these days, everything is more chaotic and messy.


Lastly, the crime rate these days are higher than when there weren’t any laws because these days, more people do bad things. For example, a long time ago, people were still learning about this world or trying to create new things to help us live better on Earth. They didn’t have time to do bad things or most people try to be nice to each other so they can keep this world a great world for the future. These days though (when laws were already invented), almost every single day or every single week, something bad happens. You can know by reading it on the newspaper, watching the news, hearing it from someone, hear it on the radio etc…


Therefore, I disagree with humans will behave badly without laws.


Disclaimer: This writing piece has only been written in the context of studying a book entitled A Long Walk to Water about the 21-year civil war in Sudan and the refugee crisis that accompanied it.

I Am From

I am from China and Canada,
where hopes can reach the sky,
I am from a lucky country where there is education,


I am from music where there is
rhythm, intonation and notes,
I am from an imaginative word of crafts,
where people’s innovation and creativity
can grow as big as a tree


I am from an unfortunate family
where I am only left with my siblings,
Series of Unfortunate Events
I am from exciting, intense and fun TV shows,
The Voice and Wipeout
Singing for Adam and overcoming obstacles.


I am from a careless generation where people say,
“Whatever,” or “I don’t care,”
But not me.
I am from a world where there is hope.
I can change people’s lives.

By Sophia Y