Am I A Humanist?

Renaissance HUmanism by tszham.lam
Are you a Renaissance Humanist?

Levels of Agreement: (1-disagree, 5-completely agree)

Individualism: 5 star

Classicism: 4 star

Secularism: 5 star

Skepticism: 4 star

Looking at my levels of agreement on the 4 elements of Renaissance humanism, I think I’m definitely a humanist because I agree with most of the ideas. Even if there was some questioning of the ideas, a great majority of them seems very logical and reasonable to me. For Individualism, I think I’m on a on level 5 agreement because giving every single person a right to be respected is very important. There’s a lot of gifted people out there, so we shouldn’t treat a person differently just because they were born in a lower class. For Classicism, I’m on a level 4 agreement because Even thought there’s a lot of great ideas and philosophies we can take from the classical times, however, ancient people couldn’t be correct on everything. Therefore, sometimes maybe the ideas still have some flaws. However, Renaissance humanists improved on all the ideas they took from the past, therefore classicism is still very acceptable in my mind. For Secularism, I’m on a level 5 agreement because it’s important to focus in your present. Spending too much time thinking about your afterlife can be a total waste of time. Finally, for Skepticism, I’m on a level 4 agreement because you learn from being inquiry and questioning life. However, if you question too much, asking questions will turn into a something that makes you weary because you asked too much. But the question Renaissance period humanists proposed were mostly probing and very high in quality. Therefore skepticism is still very acceptable to me. Overall, looking back at the levels of agreement, my opinions are in unity with Renaissance humanists, therefore I would say I’m a 95% Humanist. 


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A Dark poem: Lamb to the slaughter

In the poem, I described an external conflict between the main character Mary Maloney and her husband, Patrick Maloney (Character vs. Character). The words used in the poem was from a short story called Lamb to the Slaughter, written by Roald dahl. The conflict occurred on an evening, when Patrick returned home from work. After a sequence of unusual behaviors from Patrick, he finally opened his mouth and told Mary about a divorce. Mary was first stunned, but after spotting the frozen lamb leg in the fridge, a dangerous thought came to her mind, and that was to murder her husband. The conversation between the two of them is designated to be when the author first introduces the conflict, after a series of rising actions, it had led to the scene of the murder which was the climax and at the same time, is the “happening” of the main conflict.

On the first few sentences, I enhanced the unease that Mary was feeling by using two dialogues from Patrick, all which telling her to sit down.

Then, the sentence “He became motionless, head down” appeared because it’s intentioned to imply to the reader that Patrick was not feeling proud to tell Mary about the divorce.

“Chin and mouth, in shadows” was used to express that the words Patrick said was very disreputable. Which links with the text that he wishes the things he told Mary is to be kept a secret and “needn’t really be any fuss.” -Paragraph 35 Especially the people at his job site, he’s not wishing for them to know.

“I’ll get the supper” is a very short dialogue from Mary. It’s short, but full of emotions. When she first said so, it was full of confusion and blankness, or a complicated feeling that Mary is having at the moment. Possibly being dazed, surprised, and completely at a loss of what to do. This sentence also presents a fact that Mary is trying to turn away from the reality. When she said, “I’ll get the supper”, it was a sign to go somewhere else and back away from everything. Her husband, the living room……just away from where she was and take some time alone. And interestingly, this helped Mary to discover the lamb leg in the fridge, allowing the plot to move on to the next stage.

Then, the reason why I used “All right” was because this phrase had a special tone to it. It sounded like hate and the intension for revenge—usually a phrase to hear from a hero movie. The main character shows a scorn and unyielding attitude towards the inequality and the cruelty of the real world, then swears to not bow towards their so-called destiny. And when that happens, they just go “All right then, I’ll… (swears to do something heroic)” In this case, during the time when Mary was left alone, “All right.” can cue the reader, that her confusion had started to fade away and what replaces the feeling was hate. Maybe hate was a little too harsh. Though, it was that moment when the intention to murder her husband emerges in her heart, but Mary does not notice it herself. This kind of equals to a carry forward of the plot and moves even closer to the main conflict of Mary murdering Patrick.

Followed by, when Mary was holding that lamb leg, passing by the living room, the sight of her husband had stimulated and triggered the intention to seek for revenge, the rage of Patrick leaving her during her weakest period, the period when she needs a lot of help—the period when she was already six months pregnant. The rage had motivated her into doing something next that was also the main conflict of the story—that is: “She swung in the air and brought it down. Hard. He crashed to the carpet……She killed him.”

Overall, I think the story delivers the bitter and irony of unsatisfied men. Through Patrick Maloney, Mary’s husband, the author had portrayed the result of an unfaithful man, of his horrible decisions and actions that led to his own death. His death was full of irony. Moreover, I think the story also had extruded the stupidity of Patrick Maloney through the foolish decision he made. If we recalled the story, Mary was doing almost everything that a wife can possibly do for their husband. From greeting him at the door to preparing supper. From hanging his coat to being considerate. Even with such a wife, Patrick decided to leave her because of his own desires. With Mary’s pregnancy, he left her when she needs him the most. All of this horrible timing and decisions adds up and worked as a blasting fuse towards Mary. Of course, Mary doesn’t want to get the reputation of being abandoned by her own husband. It was also out of rage when her husband decided to not only leave her, but also their baby that is still in her belly. So, in the end, Mary decided to kill Patrick. He ends up getting himself killed by the woman he had just chosen to abandon. Sarcastic, right?

Last but not least, the reason(s) why I had chosen the picture with the bloody lamb leg and dark smokes (Picture origin) to suit my poem. The lamb leg and the blood on it was to represent Patrick’s death. It’s supposed to give a feeling of sarcastic because 1) He was murdered by a piece of meat and died in the hands of a woman he’s about to leave. 2) He died because of his own stupidity. Then, the black smoke represents the desires that blinded Patrick Maloney into deciding to leave Mary. These two works together and form into the meaning of: The brief desires before one’s eyes can blind a man into making the wrong choice and end up getting a death full of irony. Because the meaning of this picture signifies the conflict and parts of the theme, I thought this illustration would suit perfectly.

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IBook-Legacies of Ancient China

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Product Design-Scent detector project reflection

Have you ever been walking on the streets and smell something delicious, but you just can’t identify what smell it is? The scent got your mouth all watery and you know it’s definitely some delicious food. But the fact that you just don’t know what is it makes you frustrating. So during product design, I made a prototype of my own scent detector. This prototype is inspired by a hairdryer and a gun. There’s a “trigger” located between the body and the handle. When you want the air to get detected, you push the trigger out and it starts sucking in the air. located inside the “body” are two sensors that will detect the smell, and transport the data to be shown on the analysis screen. At the end of the body, there is a little flap that can open and close, used for ejecting air after detection. Inbetween the sensors and the air sucker, there is a filtering piece located to keep out dust and other dirty things.

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Reflect, Make an Impact & Share. Design reflection

In this unit, we had been working on a wooden lightbox, creating a “picture” inside the box using pieces of wood, cut from the laser cutter. And the picture we’re creating is the place we missed due to COVID. I think the main skill I developed from this unit is using Adobe Illustrator, learning how to merge shapes, round corners, and create wood layers meant for laser cutting. I found it quite challenging at the beginning of using Adobe Illustrator, but after working together with my table partner (Audrey W.) and doing a lot of research, I got more familiar with the app and can work my way around with it.

The place I created in the lightbox is Tibet. Last year, my family visited there and the sites were quite beautiful. The skies are always blue and have blue lakes with a vague reflection of the mountain and the sky. Since this is the scene that I have the most impressions of, I decided to create the layers as the site I’ve seen in Tibet. I think my biggest success is getting the dimensions of my layers right after the first cut. Many people accidentally got the dimensions of the layers wrong and their layers can’t fit inside their lightbox. But mine turned out pretty accurate and fit in the box perfectly.  And after layering them together in the box, I’m very impressed with what I made and it’s exactly what I wanted. Even though I haven’t even added colors to the layers yet, I can imagine/see the beautiful scenery.

Though a thing I would change about my lightbox is (if I had another chance) taking the frame and making the sides wider. What that will do is taking my cow layer (see attached image for an overview of the layers) and glue it to the frame. And after doing that, it’ll create a little “cap” for my lightbox that I am able to take off. The design is inspired by Mr. Laymen’s lightbox since he also has a wide frame and makes a cap for his lightbox. It stops the layers from falling out and gives you a feeling of looking at a piece of painting. But the frame I made this time is too thin, which made it almost impossible for me to attach the cow layer.

I think the biggest obstacle I had during this project is deciding/planning my lightbox. During brainstorming, I thought up a few brilliant ideas and can’t quite decide on which one I should choose. Also, even though I got ideas about the place I’m missing, I had no idea at that time how my layers are going to look like. Until I finally remembered my trip to Tibet and the scenery I saw.

Overall, I think my lightbox is a success because it came out perfectly and all matched my plan. Other than the frame, I think I placed my light pretty perfectly and no “oopsie” mistakes had happened while gluing my layers. And I’m pretty satisfied with my painting. Especially the work I did on making the vague reflection of the mountain in the lake.




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Self-confidence of Percy Jackson

Topic: How could Percy’s self-confidence be improved?

Can you feel what it’s like to score below a C- for the past 11 years of your life? And moreover, you can’t even help it, just because your brain has a low attention span? Can you feel the guilt when your mom looks at your report card with poor grades and still needs to smile really big to make you feel better? Percy, a boy from the novel “Percy Jackson”, is a middle-schooler with dyslexia and ADHD, he is facing all those problems at Yancy Academy. Percy got a habit of self-degrading himself, and what factors made him like that and how can Percy make his self-confidence improve?


“What was so great about me?” states Percy Jackson, the main character in the novel by Rick Riordan. “A dyslexic, hyperactive boy with a D+ report card, kicked out of school for the sixth time in six years.” -pg.38. It is very obvious that Percy is abased by his grades and compared to what he called “normal kids” on page 1. The other kids at Yancy academy don’t have the problems Percy has. Money, grades, reading obstacle…etc. Percy thinks he differs majorly from them since he is the only one who got those problems and the “normal kids” don’t. He stated that his special disease and poor grades made him abnormal, which made Percy feel that he should probably get a lower expectation in school. But Mr. Brunner expected me to be as good as everybody else, despite the fact that I have dyslexia and attention deficit disorder and I had never made above a C- in my life.” pg.7 But expecting that is just another sign of lacking confidence. He might as well mean he’s not good enough to do as good as the other kids in school.


The truth is, there might be some better choices he can make to improve his grades.  Summarized from multiple pieces of evidence, we can see that Percy is having quite a negative attitude towards studying. However, studying linked directly towards his grades, and improving his grades meant a boost to his confidence. With Percy’s situation, it is normal to feel studying is no use. “Finally, when our English teacher, Mr. Nicoll, asked me for the millionth time why I was too lazy to study for tests, …” ­ -pg.17. Percy probably had tried, but due to his “unnormal” diseases, he can’t help very much with his grades. But what if he finds a more preferable way to study? “The sooner you get into a good study groove, the easier everything will be, and the more your chances of getting good marks will improve.” (cite) As stated in the article of Top 10 study tips by a website called Youthcentral. Getting into a better study habit could boost your grades. Percy needs the motivation to keep studying. It can be provided by anyone. “No- he (Mr. Brunner) didn’t expect me to be as good; he expected me to be better.” Pg.7 Well, Percy’s unmotivated attitude towards studying is not going to work. The article Top 10 study tips suggested/claimed that “If you study a little every day, you’ll be continually reviewing things in your mind. This helps you understand things. It also helps you avoid the stress of last-minute cramming.” (cite) Also, another article stated Percy’s symptoms (ADHD) is what called a kinesthetic learner, “which means that you learn best when your body is engaged along with your mind.” (cite) And the tips they had given in the article are that playing with a pencil, rubber band, ball or just doing 10 jumping jacks before answering the worksheet is all ideal ways to let you focus more on studying. –How to focus on studying.


In conclusion, with an effective and suiting way of studying for Percy plus a bit of motivation, his grades will have a higher chance to improve…and the confidence boost associated along too. Percy can do well in school, even with ADHD and dyslexia. Remember, “there is no normal brain.”-New ways to think about ADHD. (cite)



-Top 10 study tips

-How to focus on studying

-New ways to think about ADHD (Newsela)

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G6 Reflection

When I started middle school, I was most excited about the freedom they give you (like the ability to choose) and also the lunch in the middle school cafeteria. In Grade 5 step-up day, I saw how good middle schoolers eat. There are so many choices to choose from.

Though, at the start of the year, I was really worried about the teachers I’m getting for each subject. I was worried like “how am I going to survive a year with an evil teacher??” But it turns out all my teachers are very nice. I really liked all of them.

The highlight of the year is the overnight trip to the Olympic Park. Even though it’s really hot there and my skin turned a bit black after I got back, but it’s fun to spend a night with your roommate in a hotel room. Though, the lowlight of that trip is that there is a bunch of mosquitos and the food isn’t as good as Singing deer lodge.

For me, the tests for all subjects are challenges. I always want to achieve a good grade in all subjects. But it’s hard for me to do that in science. So I turned my attention and tried to focus on math, humanities, Chinese, and PE. I tried my hardest and there are nights that I need to stay up late to study. Studying is like, the best way to confront tests.

I didn’t really get any feelings for e-learning and the coronavirus pandemic. I’m like, kind of a neutral. So if you ask me did I change? My answer is probably not.

The thing I’m most proud of is the grades I got for different units. Especially humanities. I did the best on that subject.

If I get a do-over, I would try to work on my science and math harder. My test scores didn’t come out that great. Also, I would try to make sure I wake up on time so I won’t miss the bus. There’s once in the year that I miss the bus during MAP testing, so I had to walk to school. And after I got there, I missed the MAP testing time in the morning.

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G6 Science review & Thinglink Submission

1) My biggest takeaway from Grade 6 science is the stuff I learned when doing the Penguin insulator project. I learned a lot about transformed energy and heat.

2)I don’t really know. Since I don’t feel really confident with ANY of those. During tests, I usually didn’t really fully observe and think about the scenario given. So on my Science tests, my scientific explanations and data analyzing probably aren’t that good.

3) I think maybe group projects. I can study any topic, but doing a group project based on that would be fun.

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“Our Story Make History” reflection

This unit, we created a major primary source about the coronavirus outbreak mainly based on our own experiences.  I’ve created a thinglink and organized the list of things I need to include mainly by date. I made the thinglink like a timeline “journey” through the start of coronavirus outbreak till now, putting every source I had collected/made throughout the unit by date. But, there are times that I grouped the things that related to each other. For example, I grouped an article about the developing vaccine along with one of my diary entries which mentioned the vaccine for COVID-19 too. They’re not placed by date but placed together because they have something in common or at least, talking about the same topic. They’ll get an idea of how the COVID-19 outbreak had impacted one’s life. Also, what strategy people used to face it.

I think what really went well during this unit is while creating my performance project. I’ve thought but a full three pages of advice and suggestions I could use while going through the coronavirus, school shutdown, e-learning, and all that stuff. I’m very proud of myself when I look back at all of the suggestions I came up with. And most importantly, they are all pretty useful since I tested every single one of them out.

During this unit, I found writing diaries a little bit challenging… I would be the first one to admit that my writing skills need improvement. There are times that I don’t even know what to write, or worse, fully express myself…

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Hi everyone! This presentation is my performance project. (I also used it as a survival guide because it works literally the same) So this is mainly about some strategies and advice that you can use to get through this whole school shutdown and coronavirus thing.

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