Final Blog Post for English 9 Humor Unit

Throughout the entire course of the final unit in English 9, I believe that I have definitely achieved my SMART goal within this period of time. I recall that my SMART goal was to “Achieve an in-depth and concise analysis that stays relevant to the topic.” Hence, I was able to achieve this by planning out thoroughly about what I am going to write about for my poem. I also annotated my poem very specifically and analyzed it for a long period of time. By annotating my poem with deep thought, I was able to have a lot of ideas in my head when writing about my selected poem by Shel Silverstein. Moreover, throughout the unit, I’ve also discovered how writers use language to create a humorous effect, mainly by highlighting some of the negative aspects of an event in a satire or funny way. Next, there are always some challenging factors when learning/studying about a new topic. In my case, I found this unit very compelling to learn about, however, I found it challenging to fully interpret some of the poems, and some of the plays. I also found it difficult to analyze them in a way that would fit my SMART goal. I then took my time to really go over the specific writings of text, then learned from my mistakes and looked at what we’ve learned mainly during past classes. On the contrary, one of the biggest successes for me personally was that I developed more analytical skills when it comes to analyzing complex pieces of texts, and organizing my work and timeframes so everything is more clear for me. Another thing is time management. Because this was a heavily self-dependent unit, I had to rely on time organization, and it has definitely strengthened, as it is a crucial habit for next year in grade 10. Moving on, I think that for the standards of Student as a Learner, I feel like I am exemplary in terms of attitude because I’ve been frequently keeping up to date with the teachers, and also talking to them if I had any questions. For responsibility, I believe I am satisfactory, mainly because I have been keeping track of my homework and turning in all of my assignments on time, however, I should still stay more connected with my class more, such as sharing thoughts in the comment section and attend more zoom meetings, even with the current time difference that I am in.
I think that, for me to fully improve my learning habits as a student as a learner, I need to not only work hard and achieve academic success but also frequently stay connected with my teachers. I believe that this will develop a good relationship in terms of a mentor and also good guidance for help. All in all, the biggest achievement that I’ve obtained this year was realizing how important organization is, regardless. I’ve learned that you should always review before starting your homework, and focus on what I’ve learned today in class. In this year of English 9, half of it was essentially online learning, however, I still made the best of it by watching past zoom meetings, looking carefully through teacher posts, and staying connected. My hope for English 10 next year is to really improve my essay writing skills in order for me to get prepared for the IB diploma, and increase my work efficiency both at home and at school. Nevertheless, this class for me was very intriguing, and I genuinely enjoyed listening and engaging to this course. Thank you.

2019-2020 Grade 9 IDU Project Final Reflection

After the first semester of grade 9, we started an interdisciplinary unit as an entire grade level. Each of us were divided into several groups and we would then have to work with each other for the next two weeks. My teammates were George, Claire S, and Jisu. I personally felt like this project required a lot of responsibility, collaboration, and communication. You also need to be an active listener to ensure that you are doing everything correctly for you and your group.

I consider myself to be at the “satisfactory” level of collaboration among my group due to the fact that I always contributed to group ideas and finished all my tasks on time. However, in order to reach the exemplary level of collaboration, I would need to establish myself as a group leader, guiding everyone through different obstacles throughout this project and expedite the process of working together.
To me, this project was considerably more difficult compared to any other group projects I have done in the past. This is because not only did you have to look out for the group and come up with new learning ideas, there were also many individual assignments that you would have to complete on your own. These individual assignments includes subjects from all classes we would usually take (Math, Science, and Social Studies). Since communication played such a big role in our project, there were frequent times when there are a lot of miscommunications amongst our group members in terms of completing the work. For instance, one of the group members said to me “Hey Kevin, I thought you were supposed to complete the last five slides of the PPT”, when I was always writing the script. There were also times when all of us relied on one group member to complete a portion of the work, and they might’ve felt pressured when we did that. If we had one more chance to redo this project with the same group members, we would assign who does what, have more chances to lead the group, and be more open with different ideas from different group members and not be biased. Another big challenge for me was responsibility. I would often times fall behind schedule because I have a lot of extracurricular activities and individual assignments to complete. I often felt pressured from myself and my teammates and knew that the clock was ticking before the final presentation.

Aside from the challenges and obstacles, I certainly learned a lot in every aspect from this unit. I understood how to collaborate better and different phases of group work. My time managing has also improved because there were so many tasks to complete in a short amount of time. I also learned how to further utilize unfamiliar programs like Microsoft Excel to organize and compute a set of data. I also made a lot of new friends. Overall, this unit is something that I would most definitely do again.

Artifact Annotation

Environmental Dynamics:

This artifact exemplifies the relationship between ancient Mesopotamia and its agricultural dynamic society. From the photo above, I have made a sickle used for farming. A sickle was the most common tool for farming and harvesting crops during the time period. It is made of flint and stone, and it was used to cut down sheaves of wheat. Wheat was the main source of a primary food base in Ancient Mesopotamia, used to supplement a consistent food supply for a long period of time. Farming has brought the environment of Mesopotamia up a notch by cultivating land.

Political Dynamics:

My artifact demonstrates how it relates to political dynamics due to the fact that the group of farmers during the time were the ones who were frequently using sickles as a harvesting tool. Typically, farmers were the ones producing the most amount of food source and also providing a surfeit of supplementary culinary resources. They were not making money like the rich and higher class people back then, but the farmers still played a major role in terms of feeding the population back then.

Cultural Dynamics:

This artifact also represents a thorough demonstration of how the relationship between the agricultural revolution and the Mesopotamian society itself develops throughout. For instance, there were many Deities in Mesopotamian culture back then, such as Dagan or Dagon. These two gods were the gods of crop fertility, and they have been worshipped widely in the middle eastern parts of the world during the Neolithic times. Because the sickle was one of the most crucial and fundamental tools of agricultural farming, it has surely exemplified a belief of agricultural perfection by using advanced tools for farming, thanks to the well-developed cities of Mesopotamia. Furthermore, the gods re-appeared again in the second millennium, as the god of fertility of vegetation was later handed down to the beliefs of citizens of the ancient civilization of Mesopotamia.

Economics Dynamics:

This artifact shows the relationship between Mesopotamian society and its economical dynamics. Because there were was a surfeit amount of food supply during the agricultural revolution, many of the workers were assigned to recreational activities and focusing on other inventions after moving on from just farming itself, due to the fact that people now have more time on their hands to create these things. And so, because of the well-developed city that Mesopotamia has, it has then generated a good amount of farming tools for the farmers to use. When these tools were created, money and time were invested. During this time, silver and barley were the main currencies. Because of this, Mesopotamia now has a numerous amount of farming tools; such as the sickle, which allows us to efficiently plant and harvest crops at the same time.

Reflection of Socratic Seminar Preparation

Today during class, we were put into specific group discussions that we thoroughly discussed about. One of the main subjects that we have discussed about in our groups was about what Junior symbolized in the Indian reservations and his new life in a new school. They both have very different communities and are in different economical states; one is modern, and one is impoverished to the extent where children do not get the benefits that they need while growing up. The highlight of this discussion was when i actively participated in group discussions and frequently asked questions. However, I should improve on listening closely to what other people say and using that to contribute to more developed conversations about the storyline. Once I can utilize this skill, I feel like I will do more well at the final socratic seminar.

Aaron Huey: America’s Native Prisoners of War.

A major take-away that I have had from this Ted Talk was a brief but  structured history and overview of Lakota, the past Native-American tribe that took over a large portion of the United States, also known as the Teton Sioux. This tribe has had a history of being racially discriminated by the white people. The Sioux who have once inhabited the black hills of South Dakota, is now considered as a sacred place in modern life today. Land claiming of the black hills between the Native-Americans and the Whites has caused hundreds of thousand of people to die, mainly the Native-Americans to be massacred. This was all caused by civil unrest in the 1700s. Now, the Lakota nation is no longer existent, with few remains of the race of Native Americans scattered through out the United States. These groups of remaining Native Americans are now differentiated into devastating reservations.
From here, we can then see how Junior and how his own identity can connect to the state of the Native-Americans. In

    The Absolutely True Diary of a Part Time Indian

, identity plays a major role in the overall plot of this story. Because Junior is exceptionally conscious about his own social position within any group of people, and also overcoming the bullying that he is constantly being faced with every single day. Furthermore, this also clarifies a better background of where Junior’s family came from. Junior’s family is not at all wealthy, and you could say that it’s on the poverty line. However, the previous generations of his family came from the Indian Reservation, meaning that there was not ever a time where their family was rich. In addition to the hidden themes and symbols in this novel, this ted talk has brought many realizations on how he portrays the reservations and Juniors life. The two are very similar in terms of the fact that they both struggle economically, and generally just has too many problems in which anyone can fix. Finally, I believe that Sherman Alexie has chosen this novel to be aimed at young-adults is because he wants us to understand and interpret how modern day racial problems that affects millions of Native-Americans can have a direct connection to Junior’s life.

Design Robot Petting Zoo Project

Throughout the course of this project, me and my design partner, David, worked continuously from trial and error starting from planning the design of our robot. We gathered and synthesized the correct materials in order to set long-term goals for ourselves as design students. Starting from a cardboard design, we did not have time to paint the cardboard due to the fact that I was on the Pingyao trip for 3 days and MAP testing. This caused a major impediment to our progress as collaborating partners. We substituted the paint for high quality images of Thomas the train off Google Images Search. Even though the train does not count as a defined animal, we represented the train as an animal engine, meaning that it would count as an animal. Some of the most notable strengths that me and my design partner had was the fact that we had a very detailed and idealistic plan and also being extremely creative with all aspects while constructing our prototype. One thing that could’ve changed while designing our prototype was arranging more time in order to make our design more compelling to all audiences of different age. In conclusion, I had learned a lot from working with different people that I have never worked before and also had fun trying multiple methods to make our prototype more aesthetically pleasing to the human eyes.

Summer Reading Books


The three books that I want to read this summer are The Outsiders, Looking for Alaska, and To Kill a Mockingbird. This is because I find the plot compelling to learn and also dig deeper into the book. For S.E. Hinton’s The Outsiders, I am eager to learn more about different societies and modern conflict among characters. For John Green’s Looking for Alaska, I would want to know more about how hope can play a major role on a teenage boy’s life. In Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird, I want to understand more about social inequality and racism/law in the 1930s.

I will also have a long-term goal for myself while trying to accomplish my summer reading. I will try my best to read 45 pages a day, and finish my three books over the course of the next two months.