As our last project in unit for writing class, we made a graphic novel using the comic and film techniques we’ve learned throughout the quarter.
Here is one section of my comic that I drew. The first technique that I’ve used in the section is the bleed technique. Bleeding is when a frame in a novel is cut off by the page instead of the gutters. I used this technique to draw the reader’s attention to the baby and exaggerate it’s existence. Next I played around with the colors. As the majority of my panels were in black and white, I colored the baby in bright colors, to give it a saturated feeling. This saturated feeling was used to emphasize adoration.
During this unit, I was mostly challenged when it came to the drawing section. Unexpectedly, the brainstorming and outlining wasn’t as hard as expected. However, by the fact that I am not a really artistic person, I had some troubles trying to express my story the way I wanted to. At the end, I wasn’t able to create a comic that I perfectly liked because I had many parts I wish I could have drawn better, but except my drawing, I am pretty gratified with my comic.
I think this unit is a significant way to show my understanding of comic and film techniques, and can be enjoyable to many students who enjoy art. Although one week is enough time to make a short simple comic, many students would have been pleased to receive more time and make a more sumptuous looking novel.
This is a photo of our ecodome unsealed (3rd Attempt).
We are not sure why one of our grasshoppers died, however the other one which was dying off when we unsealed our ecodome, we are pretty concerned it started to die off because the food sources became scarce. A few hours before we unsealed the ecodome, the grasshopper was alive, but it had no food sources. It was probably suffering from hunger and not receiving enough energy it needed, and by the time we unsealed our ecodome, it was in it’s range of going to die soon.
Compared to the other attempts, we did not have any trouble with the amount of water we had have put in. Our tender plants were fresh, and the ecodome was not too dry nor it was not too humid.
According to research, grasshoppers are able to survive 2-3 days without consuming any food sources it needs. After the days, the grasshopper is not able to function, because it hasn’t received the energy it is needed. To prevent our grasshoppers from dying off from hunger, we should be aware of having enough food source in our ecodome. So the next time we build, we would put in an abundant amount of food sources for the grasshoppers to consume.
In research, it came out that biodomes (ecodomes) need an interaction between biotic factors (crickets in our case), and abiotic factors which are the sunlight, soil, and water. As long as both factors exist inside our ecodome then our crickets will be able to survive.
However, we should be concern of not bringing in any dead plants. If we bring in dead plants, then one of our biotic factors are gone. Also, they can not go through their process of photosynthesis to produce oxygen for the grasshoppers to breathe in.
Grasshoppers prefer dry and open habitat with a lot of grass. Throughout our attempts, we worked on having lots of area for the garsshoppers to play around, but we didn’t really have grass in our ecodome (when the grasshoppers actually prefered them). Since research says grasshoppers like grass, in our next ecodome attempt, we should try adding some grass in.
Grasshoppers eat a variety of foods. They prefer vegetables, however they also eat wheat. So next time, it would be better if we added all of these different kinds of food sources, so the grasshoppers would also have a happy time eating.
Changes Made on the Day (3rd Ecodome to Final):
This is a photo of our ecodome before it was sealed it’s final time.
Used gardening soil because it was the most suitable type of soil that goes with the tender plants.
We filled 1/4 of our ecodome with moisturized soil.
We added pebbles back in to make our ground thicker in our ecodome.
We tried adding the grass back in to provide the best habitat for the grasshoppers
We tried adding a variety of food soucres. We added cabbages, bread, and oatmeals. We made sure we had added enough food sources so the grasshopper wouldn’t die because of hunger.
Instead of adding two tender plants, we added one. Although we were concerned about the lack of oxygen it might have, we decided to add more food sources than the tender plants.
We added one grasshopper because throughout all the other attempts, we always had one survive and one die (probably because of food source), so we thought it would have been better to just start with one.
From the research, preparation and the debates themselves, what did you learn about the art of persuasion? Please explain.
I learned that the more prepared you were, the more confident you could be which would result into winning the debate which gives you achievement. During the debate, when I was making my speech on the parts where I was very confident (was sure my research was correct), I seemed to be more expressive and I could see myself enjoying the situation; However when I was in a situation where I was sort of unprepared, it was clearly seen by myself hesitating too much.
How do you establish credibility as a debater? Explain fully.
First, you should stay focused on your topic. It becomes a negative mark for you if you say irrelevant topics during your debate. You should also support your arguments with evidence. By stating your sources and using numbers, you sound much more reliable than when you don’t. I recommend you not making eye contacts with people and using hand gestures. Rather than standing upright and staring at your screen, you could catch more attention from the audiences when you were more expressive.
What surprised you the most about your debate and/or the debate experience?
I was surprised that the script was very important in organizing my ideas together and helping me stay focused. Throughout the debate, I had some times where the opponent stated a point that I did not predict, so I panicked and start to say things off topic. When this happened, my group members told me to look at my script, stay calm, and surprisingly I was able to defend myself from their rebel questions.
What were you most proud of in your own debate?
I was proud that I had have enough research so that I was able to talk back to my opponent’s rebuttal. At the very beginning (the preparation) I was very confused of what we were supposed to do, and how I would have started my debate template, but as I got going on, I was able to successfully research about my debate topics, and organize them in order so they could be used in speeches.
What would be your next steps? Or in other words, what would you have done differently?
I would have practicd my debate speech a few times. Although I had a script, I hesitated a lot and mumbled my words when it came to speaking. It was probably because I was a little nervous, and I wasn’t sure what I was doing, but I think if I had have had practiced a little more, I would have been more confident, which then, I would have had been able to speak more clearly without any mumbles.
Additional Comments, Questions, Observations or Suggestions.
I think the debate template was a little confusing, because I did not know what the counterclaim box wanted me to do exactly. Although I was able to get the template done, I had a lot of trouble knowing what information belongs where, and what each of the boxes meant.
A photo of our ecodome before it got unsealed it’s 2nd time.
Huge amount of mold covered nearly all over the food sources (corn and sun flowers)
Grasshoppers did not eat the corn and sun flowers.
The water was pure
1 Grasshopper survived, the other we can not find.
We still had massive amount of water vapors on the side of our ecodome
One of the plants started to rotten, however the other tender plant was fresh
1 out of 3 earthworms survived.
Most of the water were left inside bottle
Around four pieces of cabbage was left.
We assumed that we had had an suitable amount of water in our ecodome, but in our ecodome, we still were able to see a massive amount of water vapors. This happened because we didn’t measure the amount of water well, so we had an abundant amount of water in our ecodome.
One of our two grasshoppers died. We first predicted that it was again because of the lack of food that lead for the grasshoppers to go into an intra-specific competition, but in our observations we could see that four of the pieces of cabbages we had added were left over, so we predict that it wasn’t because of the limited amount of food source. Other than that, we do not have any predictions of why one of our grasshoppers died.
One of the grasshopper was not able to be found. I think it was a mistake that we made when doing our observations, that we didn’t serach for the grasshopper carefully. While we were searching over the soil expecting the grasshopper to be dead on the soil, I think we might have had accidentally mistaken the dead grasshopper as something like a dead leaf.
This is a photo of our 3rd ecodome before it was getting sealed.
Decided to not use corn, and only cabbage since corns produced too much mold.
Sprinkled water in soil, instead of adding a container with water filled in it because research said grasshoppers preferred dry habitat, so it wouldn’t be the best for them to live in a moldy climate.
We took out pebbles, because they were no use in our ecodome.
We added only two small tender plants because we wanted to have more space to add more food sources just in case our grasshoppers don’t have a lack of foods.
We combined dry soil and wet soil and filled around 1/7 of our ecodome because the grasshoppers preferred a dry habitat, but we also needed our ecodome to be moisturized so the producers (plants) can survive.
In language arts 8 in quarter 2, we’ve been working on informational writings. My topic was about Dog domestication. When it was first introduced that we had to have our research note cards completed, it was sort of a disaster because I was afraid I wouldn’t meet the criteria of the note cards. However, unlike how I’ve expected, the research papers were completed fairly nicely, and I was successful on getting my full marks during the interview. I’ve reached the range of numbers of note cards needed, and had a good balance between paraphrased facts and quoted facts.
While working on my informational writing, I found that organizing the topics of my paragraphs, and fixing my grammar was difficult. I was wandering if I should have focused on one theory of dog domestication and write my three body paragraphs in depth, or have researched three different theories and talk about them briefly. It was hard for me to decide which of the two choices I should have chose, but by referring to my research note cards, I’ve decided to talk about three of the different theories existing. Another difficulty I had was when I was writing my conclusion. When I had a conference with Mr. Benck, I’ve received a feedback that my conclusion did not flow and make sense because of the lack of grammar problems.
If to redo my writing, I’d like to try focusing on one theory of dog domestication when writing my three paragraphs. My current writing my be felt too brief, since I had to talk about three varying theories. I think I would have been able to write more specifically, and in detail. Although it does seem that if I did it that way, I would have had to research that much more so I would have enough facts to write.
Based on the research we did, it came out that grasshoppers rather live in dry habitats than wet places.They like to eat corns, wheat and rather eat the grass beneath the plants than the leaves, and they prefer tender plants which help them digest better.
Since grasshoppers prefer dry habitats, we would add less water. Adding less water will also prevent condensation that is happening in the ecodome when the water evaporates.
Research shows us that you should be aware of keeping two or more grasshoppers because they might be having an intraspecific competition. By this, we predict that one of our grasshopper died because there wasn’t enough food inside the ecodome.
It also came out that they like open areas so they can play around. Since grasshoppers like dry habitats, a and dry soil/sand will also be needed. We should change our ecodome container into a larger size too, since they like to hop around.
Revisions we have made (1st Ecodome to 2nd ecodome):
Our new container
A picture of our finished ecodome before it got sealed.
Used 3 earthworms instead of mealworms (mealworms did not match the habitat of ecodome)
Added 1/2 corn for food.
Took out the cucumber (Grasshoppers did not eat all of them in 1st trial)
Added two more tender plants, and took out the grass so the grasshopper could play around and eat more.
Changed size of container small to big, (to make more space fo the grasshoppers)
Changed the type of soil to dry soil (grasshoppers prefered dry habitats)
Changed amount of water to around 20 mL (to keep the ecodome dry, and prevent condensation.
While making our ecodome, we took out the pebbles that we were going to have in our water. We decided that they were not useful in our ecodome. We used a different type of plant from the garden in our school instead of grass, since we weren’t able to get them.
We figured out that our ecodome was smaller than we thought, so had to add less plants than we were originally going to add. We could not add the water plant in because it was oversized. Instead, we went out to the garden and got some plants with leaves that the grasshopper could hop on.
Instead of using a type of divider to divide the water and the soil, we used a plastic bottle and poured the water in there, and placed it in the eco dome. We were planning to sprinkle some water in the soil, but we thought that it wouldn’t make a big difference or effect anything, so we did not.
In language arts quarter 1, we learned about journalism and wrote a news paper article. I wrote about the changes that were made in SSIS that lead them to seating more than 1000 students. Throughout this project, I think I did really good on including all the aspects I needed into my article that were given in the rubric. I can’t state that I have everything that’s needed in my article, but I do have enough of them to write an article in good quality. Something that I need to improve in my article would be on grammar and mechanics. While proof reading other articles and comparing them with mine, I could easily see that I needed to work on having my sentences make sense, and having my article flow. I felt like they were more in point form, and was read as if it was a list.
During the journalism project I learned that the formality of the writing was slightly different from other writings. I thought that news paper articles had to be very formal like narratives, but as I got them in depth, I realized they could be a little informal. I also learned that the language used in journalism did not have to be hard. Different from what I expected, they could be written in an 5th grade level language, although we did have to include a few strong words.
Overall, quarter 1 was more of a time for me to adapt to the ambience of the class. It was a time for me to get comfortable with my classmates, and the way the class was lead. I normally like to do things in my own, but in this class we were put in groups most of the time, and I think this sort of helped me cooperate more, and get closer to my classmates. Newspapers at first gave me a few stress, but I got more comfortable with them so at the end they weren’t that much of a deal, and lit circles were very fun and relaxing.
How did it go conducting research? Triumphs? Challenges?
When researching, I had some challenges with organizing my research. When I was filling in the boxes, I got confused of what I was supposed to write in each box, and I felt that the questions I needed to answer sort of lead to the same point (I didn’t know how the questions differed from each other). Although I struggled with organizing my work, when I finished filling in my boxes, I felt some pride of myself.
What did you learn about yourself when you had to take-notes?
I learned that I had to do everything in order for me to understand what I was doing. By skipping around my tasks and not focusing on one, made me very confused of what supposed to do, and what I had completed.
What insights did you gain about narrative hooks that you may not have been so aware of before?
I wasn’t aware that our narrative hooks needed to me very vivid, but by practicing to write them and having the activity that we did in the library, I got a basic idea of how my hooks needed to improve, such as having more adjectives and adverbs, and I think I gradually was able to improve on my writing.
What narrative hooks did you experiment with in your writing?
I sort of played around with metaphors and imagery while I was writing. Imagery was something I use often when writing narratives, but I thought that my writing was still not very descriptive, so I worked on it a little bit more.
What discoveries did you encounter as you were vlogging?
I discovered that adding drawings (sketch note) was more pleasing for the readers to listen and watch, rather than just having myself be the screen and have people listen to me talking. It was also cool that adding sound effects made a huge difference than not having anything on the background. It pulled in people’s attention, and had them engaged in my video.
What is your BIGGEST TAKEAWAY (BIGGEST LEARNING) from our Revolutionary Thinker’s Project?
The biggest takeaway I got while doing our revolutionary thinker’s project was that I can improve my flow of writing by reading my passages. I was able to realize this because when doing my vlogs, it was easily seen that my writing wasn’t flowing very well. As I read, I found some difficulties in reading my passages because they were written as if they were in point form.
During Mandarin L3, we learned about relatives (Unit 1) and appearance (Unit 2). For our first unit, we made a family tree to show our understandings of relatives in a Chinese style. At the beginning we learned our paternal sides of our family, then once we were familiar with them, we learned the maternal sides. We took quizzes on both just so we were sure that we memorized them. We were also handed our worksheets and were assigned to solve two pages each day. The worksheets helped me understand the structure of the mandarin sentences.
The second unit was about appearances. We were sort of reviewing what we learned from Mandarin L1, but adding a few more vocabulary words. We also took a quiz for this unit. We didn’t do any projects yet, but were handed out the worksheets.