I never dreamed about success. I worked for it. -Estee Lauder

Category: I am a Collaborator

Project Entrepreneur: Collaborator

As May is nearing to an end, our final project of the year is also coming to an end. Selling our products and goods in the cafeteria will be next week’s Tuesday and Thursday for our group, and we are looking forward to it. We have put so much time and effort into this project, and we’ve learned a lot, all while having fun. I’ve learned that to make this project successful, one very important skill we must have is being collaborative.

One strength I think I have as a collaborator is doing my part and trying my best to fulfill my roles. I think this helps my team because (hopefully) my teammates will be able to trust that I can be independent and reliable, and that I know what I’m doing or need to do. Trying my best to fulfill my roles will also mean my team members don’t have to do extra work that I’m supposed to do, and contributing will help make my team much more efficient. For example, as the designer of my group, I had to sketch a design of our prototype, as well as help my teammates whenever they had questions about our product’s design when we were actually making our prototype. For my job as the organizer and point person, I had to make sure I would collect all the necessary papers my group needed to complete tasks, and make sure I didn’t lose any of them (especially the finance checks) so that we wouldn’t lose any money or have to redo tasks. I felt that I had tried my best to do these things, and I’m glad that I didn’t lose any important papers.

One area of growth I think I could improve as a collaborator is to not put most of the workload on me, and evenly distributing it among everyone. I think because the dates for selling our product is nearing, things are starting to get even more stressful, and I sometimes feel like I need to work on everything. I still trust my teammates, and they’re doing the work they’re supposed to be doing, but I think they might want to have more things to do as well. I think at the beginning of the unit when we first started making our prototype, I might’ve also been overexcited about the project, and wanted to do everything and dive right in. Now, I think I’ve improved slightly because my team have developed a assembly line to make our product, where one person would work with the fabric and sewing while the other would work with the book covers. This way, everyone will have something to do.

Hopefully my team and I can make enough goods in time for the days we need to sell, and that it will be a successful end to Project Entrepreneur!

River Field Study: Data Collection 5

On March 7, last Thursday, we went to the Wenyu River again for our March data collection. The data collection process was very efficient and smooth, and my group was finished very quickly without running into any. technology related issues. But I did almost fall into the river (hence the photo below) and in the process of saving me and my phone, I snapped our thermometer in half. We were able to collect similar numbers compared to November, which were also positive numbers in the “teens”. We think that we had different results each month because we weren’t consistent with what device we were using, LabQuest or computer. But now, we thinks that LabQuest works best, and specifically plugging the probe into the second outlet.

For the first site, the amount of dissolved oxygen in the river was 13.57 mg/L, and the temperature was 9.5 degrees Celsius. Site #2 had 15.09 mg/L of dissolved oxygen, and the temperature was 10 degrees Celsius. The third site had 14.82 mg/L of dissolved oxygen and was 11 degrees Celsius. If we compare it to the November data collection that had similar results, you can see that the data table shows the temperature is warmer by an average of about 3 degrees Celsius in March. The dissolved oxygen has also increased by an average of about 1 mg/L. Something I’m wondering about is does the temperature have anything to do with the dissolved oxygen? When the temperature increases, does the amount of dissolved oxygen in the river increase as well? I’m wondering this because when the temperature from November to March increased, so did the amount of dissolved oxygen.

Project Collisions: Unit Launch

On Monday, January 7, we launched our new unit Project Collisions with and egg drop experiment. The design challenge
was to drop a raw egg from a height of 5 meters without breaking it. We had a certain amount of time and materials to build something that would somehow prevent the egg from cracking. We had materials like newspaper, a balloon, cotton balls, paper, straw, and binder clips etc. But we also only had a certain amount of “money”, so we had to choose wisely about what we wanted to buy.

My individual design was built with one sheet newspaper, a balloon, an A4 paper sheet and 3 cotton balls. My design was to stretch out the cotton balls and then put them underneath the egg, then wrap around the whole thing with scrunched up newspaper. We would then put the egg into the balloon and blow it up. When my teammates and I shared our individual ideas, I realized that we all had basically the same idea, except that they had a parachute attached to the balloon so that the egg would drop slower down to the floor. So our group combined all of our ideas, so that the egg wrapped in protection would be placed in a balloon with a parachute attached to it. Soon, we realized that the egg wouldn’t fit into the balloon, and the balloon eventually broke as we tried to fit it around the egg, so we tried our Plan B.

The basic idea of Plan B was to roll the egg up in newspaper with protection, stand it up vertically, seal the end up so the egg wouldn’t fall out from the bottom, and attach the parachute to the top. Our design was successful because even though the egg had a few cracks in it after it had dropped, nothing leaked out of the egg, which meant our design had succeeded!

As I was watching other groups, I noticed that other people had parachutes made out of newspaper, which meant there was more air resistance, so the egg
would drop even slower to the ground. Another thing I would definitely do next time is to add a balloon at the bottom of the newspaper package, so that the egg has more cushion and protection to land on so it might
not even crack the next time.

Project Collisions is using the idea of drone delivery. During my research, I discovered that companies like Amazon, Domino’s Pizza, and Zipline have used drones to deliver packages that range from food to blood. One thing I’ve noticed that they all have in common is that when the package is dropped from the drone, they all seem to be using parachutes to “break the fall” of the package. I find that really interesting because all these big companies that are successful at drone delivery are using the same method to do things. Throughout this project, I hope I can learn more about the different forces on an object and how it might be able to help me in creating the design of my delivery system.

Houses of the Future: 3D Printing

Below is the Tinkercad design for our group’s (Samantha and Victoria) house in the future. Our Tinkercad design isn’t
completely finished as we still have small details to do like the pillows or some furniture pieces, but we have the house structure laid out.

I’m happy with how our design turned out, and I like how everyone has something they want part of the group design. I also like how we each get our own “corner” in the space, and we can personalize it however we want to.



One thing I think I did well as a collaborator is I shared my ideas, but I also listened to my teammates’ ideas, and accepted them. I also compromised on some ideas, and I worked collaboratively with others.  As a group, we all worked well together, and communicated and collaborated with each other. We respected everyone’s opinion, and discussed when there was something we didn’t agree on.

Something that I feel like we could work on or had some challenges while working together is finding time to work together
outside of classes to get work done, and communicating with each other outside of class.

Overall, I’m happy with how the design turned out, and I’m looking forward to continuing to improve our design and then 3D printing it.

Ignite Week: Exhibition

Our project for Ignite Week was to create a “record player”. We used an old bike wheel and attached many wires to it. Those wires would be taped down by copper tape. In our scenario, there are two reasons why we used copper tape. One, so it wouldn’t insulate the wire, and two, when the spoon touched the bike wheel, the tape which is connected to the wire would make a sound. The wire would be programmed on Scratch to play a specific note, and the longer the copper wire would be, the longer the note. So we planned out our song, and supposedly, when the wheel spins and the spoon drags along the tape, it would play a song. But the wheel only has one pattern taped on it, so it will only play that one part and nothing else. 

Friday was the final day to put finishing touches on our projects, and we would have our first Ignite Week Exhibition of the year. Angel and I still had to finish attaching the wires onto the wheel, and we used the first two blocks to do that. But when we were finished, we discovered that the copper tape wasn’t very sensitive, so it didn’t work as well as we hoped it would. We had to slowly “scoot” the wheel along instead of spinning it really fast, and we would only occasionally hear a melody and rhythm instead of the entire chorus being played like we originally planned. The holder for the spoon didn’t really work that well, so we also just held the spoon with our hand. During the exhibition, we would play the song for them, but in the end, we just let our audience play and experiment with the wheel, even playing the notes with their hands. That worked out better because our audience could see where our project came from and our inspiration, and they would be able to experiment with it themselves which they thought was really cool.

Overall, I thought that this first Ignite Week project of the year was really fun and an enjoyable experience, and even though or wheel didn’t work as well as we hoped it would, I still learned a lot from this experience.

Make It: Create and Improve

Questions to Answer for Feedback:

-Are the notes being played clearly?

-Does the wheel spin smoothly?

-Do you hear a song being played?


Feedback from Other Group:

They can hear the specific notes, and they can sort of hear a song being played. But because we didn’t finish programming the notes, they didn’t hear the entire song. The wheel spins smoothly, but we should figure out how the notes will actually sound like a song when the wheel is spinning. They also told us how we could make something hold the spoon up so we don’t have to hold it.

Ignite Week: Day 3

Day 3 Block 1:

Angel and I continued to work on our wheel. I continued to tape on the copper tape pattern, while she would attach the wires to the tape. We have tried to play the first few notes, and they work, but the sensitivity when a note is being pressed isn’t that sensitive.

Day 3 Block 2:

Angel and I continued to work on our roles. A problem we’ve encountered so far is that the sound is delayed when we  press on the note, and we’re experimenting with looping in Scratch so the sounds won’t be delayed.

Day 3 Block 3:

Angel and I took everything off from what we originally did with the wires and tape because everything wasn’t ver organized and was falling apart everywhere. So we restarted, stripped everything off, and started to re-tape everything back on. Now, everything is much more secure, organized, and is staying on the wheel. We haven’t programmed the sounds yet, but we will do that when we are done with all the wires. Today we have made a lot of progress, and we are almost half way through with taping the wires on the wheel.

Make It: Develop and Plan

For this project, we will need to use the bike wheel, wires, the circuit board, copper tape, masking tape, a spoon, and a stand for the wheel to spin on. We will need to know how to connect multiple wires together to make a parallel circuit, so we only need to use 2 circuit boards for all the notes.

We got our ideas by first coming up with the idea of a piano on a wheel, but as we continued to brainstorm, we developed the
idea of making the wheel spin. When we complete attaching the wires to the tape pattern, we’ll first test it by just pressing on the notes, and when we create the spoon stand, we’ll spin the wheel to see if it will play the song.

Spring Rock Field Trip

Last week, FA went on a one-night overnight field trip to SpringRock.

I really enjoyed this field trip, and it might be my favorite field trip EVER! On typical field trips, we would always go on a Great Wall hike, but this time, all we did was rope courses, and I enjoyed it so much!

The highlight of my trip was the rope courses and the Jacob’s Ladder, which was basically the entire trip. Both of these obstacle courses were stepping into the edge of my panic zone, and at first it was a challenge for me. I thought I couldn’t do the Jacob’s Ladder, but my teammates encouraged me to persevere and to try my best, and eventually I made it to the top. For the rope course, I was really nervous on the first obstacle, because I was so high up. But I pushed through, and when I got to the double helix course, I was really really nervous. But I overcame my hurdles and made it through the double helix, which wasn’t that hard at all!

During the Jacob’s Ladder especially, we had to work as a team. My team was determined to make it up altogether, but because we were the first group, we were “on our own”, and there were times when we thought about giving up. But we worked really well as a team, encouraging each other and pulling each other up to the next rung. On the rope course, we were also encouraging each other and giving each other advice, so for this trip, I think I worked really well as a collaborator.

I am…

Out of the 5 areas, I feel the strongest in communication because I feel like I am able to express myself and my thinking while being respectful to other’s and their opinions, and responding to other people’s comments. Something I think that I could improve on is my thinking, and to be more open-minded and flexible.


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