Chair Sculptures

`During this quarter in art, we have started on designing our new project in art. We were supposed to come up with as many ideas as possible to come up with a theme for our chair sculptures. To me, I think that the easy thing about this project is to come up with the ideas because technically we could use whatever theme we want. The part that is going to be challenging is going to be the part where we have to decide on what kind of design we would want to put into our sculpture because I think that that part is going to be the most important part since it decides how your sculpture is going to look like.

Some of the ideas that came up in my mind were:
Alice in wonderland
Paper lanterns + lalaland
Roman Holiday
Creepy crawlers
Brave (Disney Movie)
New York

With all these ideas, I first decided to work with the roman holiday, but then I realized that I could not create a different design for each chair (planning) so I had decided to incorporate the theme of swamps and creepy crawlers into my chair sculpture. When designing, we were supposed to sketch out a few different ideas to get an idea of what we want. It is important to plan out a few ideas because we don’t always have one idea when the sketches are made, we could see the different perspectives and could use those ideas to make and improve our planning.

To me, I am really looking forward to making and sculpting my sculpture. To test out the different materials and style of sculpting, and to work and try out new ideas.

As you shown from my design, you can see that there is going to be an alligator on the back of the chair, acting as if it is crawling onto the chair. Then, I have done research on what types of trees grow in swamps and is planning to use them in my sculpture.

Here are some of the sketches that I made for the planning of my sculpture:

We were required to find a video that is relevant to our sculpture, so I thought that a tutorial on making crocodile skin is the most relevant since my biggest element is the crocodile.

This is a technique to make crocodile skin out of glue, and I will try it on my crocodile after I finish plastering the body. The technique also works with the python/snake that I’m going to create after my crocodile. I had also found a website that shows us how to create the scales of the crocodile, which I am going to apply the two techniques to my crocodile sculpture.

Link to my Pinterest boards: Animals details , Sculpture

Video recording process:
1st class

Video 1

2nd class:

Throughout the classes, I have been forming my crocodile with rolled up and crunched up newspaper to create the desired shape of the crocodile and had held the sculpture up with masking tape and hot glue to attach the pieces together. Then, I have used hot glue to make the scales of my crocodile. The results had come out better than I had expected, as to how the hot glue had a really professional and realistic look.

For the next 10 classes, I am going to:

1. Continue making the snake and hot gluing the scales of the crocodile


Here is what I got done in the recent classes:

This is what I did so far in class:

Looking back at 10 weeks ago, I am pretty proud of how put together and organized my sculpture is. I am also pretty amazed of how much sculpture i did and how from only newspaper had became a crocodile.

Some of the main elements that i had applied onto my sculpture is texture, mass, and lines. And if i had to choose one of the most important or stood out element in my sculpture then it would be texture because my chair posses a different variety of textures and when you look at it the main features would be how texturized my crocodile is.

NY X VN Collaboration

Processed with VSCO with a6 preset

N-alliteration collaboration with NY Commack Middle School + Saigon South International School

For this project, I had participated in painting the background, doing the drawing of the narwhals and assembling the alliteration to the background. All in all, I think that my partner and I had done a really great job on agreeing and communicating with each other to created this page. Gianna’s (my partner) did a really good job on the lettering and I think that it fits in really good with the background.

Not only that I did the letter N page, I had also helped out with making the posters, writing the introduction for the book and to plan the book launch coming up soon. Something that was easy was to create the poster and writing the introduction since there was already a guide in doing so. Although I had discovered that planning the book launch was quite a challenge because we had to go over the details with Mrs. Burger and Dr. Keller to get everything sorted out and ready to go. We are having a small presentation this Friday alerting them about the book.
Here is what our presentation is going to look like!

For the publicity project, I had posted the new about our new book on different varieties of social medias.screen-shot-2016-12-12-at-2-59-03-pm

(Picture not uploading) Here is a link to my Facebook post about our new project!

We also had a skype call with Commack Middle School. I think that the skype call was a great chance for us to interact with our partners and to tell them what we liked about the project and just to say hi and get to know them. Although the call was a bit loud, I think that we had a great time all together as two different schools from two completely different places.

Our book is currently being sold on a website called All of the profits that it is providing is going directly to WWF to provide safety for the animals. You can access this link to purchase the book :


Radical Invention Debate Reflection

Our new social studies project was to conduct and perform a debate on whether which chosen invention was more revolutionary. Our group -consisting of Sue, Haeree, Lucy and I – had chosen to debate on whether the invention of the airplane or the invention of the internet is more revolutionary.

We had to first do different types of research to get to know about the topic, then we needed to provide evidence so that our research is trustworthy.

Here are the roles:

From the research, preparation and the debates, I have learned that the art of persuasion is very powerful and efficient. This method could be used to change someone’s perspective on a specific idea, or it can change an entire future. I had established credibility as a debater by providing trustful sources when explaining my research and facts to gain the viewer’s trust. By doing this, I could gain the viewers vote and direct their opinions to fit with my side of the debate with trustful sources so they can make sure that the information that I’ve retrieved is correct and up to date. One thing that surprised me most about my debate experience was how I manage to convince the judge that my side of the debate was more revolutionary than the other groups. I also was very surprised at how I was able to speak confidently when providing my ideas. I was proud of my ability to speak loudly and clearly to provide my ideas to the judges and peers. Due to how I was able to speak confidently, it has strengthened my claims and ideas. If I could redo my debate, I think that I would direct the argument into more branches so that I don’t repeat my ideas and claims. Also, I think that I should slow down to read out more of the research that I had on my document too.

Here is what our debate had looked liked!

Day 14-15 Ecodome Challenge

We opened our ecodome for the second time today. There was no bad smell coming out of the dome, but then our two crickets were dead. We had actually put in three crickets and found that two were dead, but the third one were nowhere to be found. Pepe and I predicted that the third cricket was either buried or was eaten by the other one.

For a change, we decided that we would add a little bit of water rather than a whole bed of water like the last time we did it because we had done research and it said that crickets prefer more of a dry environment. We would also add in lettuce and carrot to provide food for the crickets. A bigger change that we are making to add two grasshoppers into our ecodome, with two crickets. The reason that we want to add grasshoppers because we want to experiment if the cricket will eat the grasshopper. Also, we wanted to test how long the grasshoppers would survive because we heard from other groups and their results were quite successful.

What do grasshoppers eat? (source)

    • Dry plants
    • Grass
    • Corn
    • Wheat
    • Barley
    • Alfalfa

When making the ecodome, we did not add the lettuce and carrots because we had changed our mind when putting food in the dome. Mainly because we felt like the food was going to rot again because we are leaving it for so long. There was also a small stream we had created with plastic wrap but decided to abandon the idea because our soil was already moist enough as you can see in the photo below. I had also brought a fern so there can be more varieties of plants.
Here is our ecodome:

English Language Arts Semester 1

In my opinion, my biggest success was to finish my Research Essay and go through the process of it. I am proud of the research process that I went through because it was the first time that I had done something like this.

One of the things that I found was a bit tricky was the journalism project. Although I had experienced some simple journalistic writing, this time it was a lot more different than we thought it was supposed to be.

If I could do something different, I think I would do more research on how to write a proper journalistic piece and find out how people succeed to do write a really good piece.

Day 9 Ecodome Challenge 🌿

Today we started on our new ecodome. Our last one was quite a success, except the moldy grapes that made our ecodome stink.

We made some modification for our new ecodome:

      • add mini tomatoes and more variety of different kind of plants to the ecodome because we think that it would provide more oxygen.
      • Although, we didn’t get to seal in our new ecodomes because all of the crickets were dead.

We had also decided to:

      • keep the waterbed design, alike with our first ecodome because we predict that it was an effective method – as you can see in the picture below.
      • The position of some of the plants is also alike with our first ecodome.

Here is our new Ecodome design!

When we got the crickets, we had added two crickets like the last time because our past ecodome had appeared to succeed on the first attempt with two crickets.
Here is where we put our ecodome. A place where it’s sunny so that the plants go through photosynthesis to create oxygen for the plants.

After 8 days, we had opened our second ecodome. There were not any distinctively bad smell detected when the lid was opened, but it was very humid and warm. Although when we opened our ecodome this time, we could only find one cricket, but it was not alive. We had again predicted that the other cricket is buried in the dirt, or it had been eaten by the other cricket.
Here is a video of Pepe and I talking about our mistakes and what we are changing for this ecodome.

This is what our ecodome looks like when the lid is opened after 8 days.

Ecodome Challenge – Day 7 🌿

Today we opened our ecodome after 6 days. At first, we thought that our two crickets are dead, but then one ran out of the leaves. We couldn’t find the other cricket, although we predict that the other one is either eaten by the surviving cricket or had dug down and died in the dirt.


  • The fruits and vegetables had turned rotten and there we also white mold growing and sticking to the grapes.
  • Water condensation around the side and top of the box because the dirt is moist, and we also had a puddle of water too. The water condensation had happened because we had left our ecodome directly under the sun. You can see it around the box.
  • Unpleasant odor coming from the moldy grapes
  • One surviving cricket still running around when the box is opened.
  • There were some plants that are still fresh because the sun, crickets, and water to provided the essentials for photosynthesis as you can see in the picture below.

Here is what our ecodome looked like when the lid is opened:
Reflection Video:
Here, we will tell you more about our ecodome, like the different aspects and details of our dome.

For our second attempt of the ecodome, we were allowed to do some research on what we wanted to know about the crickets. here are some of the things that I found!

What do crickets eat?
Crickets are omnivorous, eating things from rotting plants, leaves, fungi, and fruit, anythings around their possible reach. They will also eat other insects, sometimes eating each other as well.

Where do crickets live?
Crickets tend to live underneath rocks, tall grasses, leaves, debris, and logs.They also prefer to live in places that are damp and hidden.

Here is a link to find out more about what crickets eat!:

We predict that our crickets might breed, or eat each other if there were not enough food. But if there is too much food , then it will create a lot of moss and bacteria in the ecodome.

Ecodome Challenge – Day 1 🌿

Our new unit in science is about ecology, and one of the main projects that we are doing is to create an ecodome for our crickets and grasshoppers (any of choice). For this project, our ecodomes are required to keep our crickets/grasshoppers for a certain amount of time in a tightly sealed container – meaning nothings gets in our out of the container. As for the inside of the container, we are allowed to put anything in (dirt, plants, plastic boxes, rocks,etc). On the day our project was introduced, I had teamed up with PePe and created a blueprint of what our first ecodome is going to look like.


What our ecodome contains: 

  • A thick, translucent square box because it’s not too big and not too small for the crickets. 
  • Enough soil to cover the bottom of the box and also to keep the plants from dying. 
  • Wooden sticks because crickets do jump and it is going to be easier for the crickets to move around and for them to access different heights. 
  • 2 crickets to provide company for the crickets. 
  • A small pot of water for moisture. 
  • Rocks to create texture and for the crickets to sit on. 

Changes made on design day:

  • We had added four different types of dirt mixed together to create variation. 
  • There are also different types of plants. 
  • We also made a water pit out of a plastic sheet covering a section of hollowed out dirt.
  • There is also some carrots, cucumbers, and rotten grapes providing food for the 

As you can see in the picture below, we had included a bed of water to provide moisture and the food for the crickets on one side. We had also rested the sticks on a high part of the plant so that there are different heights for the crickets.

Language Arts Reflection

Hello whoever is reading this blog post, hi I’m Alina. So far in English Language Arts, we did a project on writing and designing a newspaper. For the project, I was first really stuck on thinking of a topic to write about, but after asking and conferencing with my friends, they had suggested some ideas and I had figured out what I wanted to do.

For the article, I decided to write about “What types of music do 8th graders of SSIS listen to?”. To start, I had written out a few questions to create a survey on the topic. Then the survey was sent out to twenty-four different students of SSIS. The answers were very detailed, and there was also a variety of genres of music that the students had filled out.

I think that I did pretty well on writing the article, but I would want to retry on my researching part because there was some information that was missing from my article.

Here is the survey for my article: SURVEY
Here is my article: ARTICLE
Here is the newspaper of my group: NEWSPAPER

What did you learn?
During and after the process of writing this newspaper article, I had learned to be more organized on what I am writing, and how to correctly use the data results to affect my writing. I think that it is very important to organize and lay out your materials when you are whisking up something because using the information creates the foundation for your work, and if the foundation isn’t strong, then your work would have a very weak start.

How was quarter 1 for you?
For me, quarter one was actually better than I thought it was during it. When looking back at what I did, I realized that it was actually pretty easy (except for science), although, the end of the quarter was quite stressful.


This quarter in social studies we learnt about the revolutionary thinkers. For this project, I chose William Harvey.

Combined Work:


Here are the minimalist posters that I made!


How did it go conducting research? Triumphs? Challenges?
When conducting research, it wasn’t fairly easy because there were not a lot of sources that talked about William Harvey’s artifacts and visuals to benefit the top of the boxes that we were working on. Other than that, I mainly used encyclopaedia britannica to do most of the research, but then I had to seek out other sources to fill in the boxes

What did you learn about yourself when you had to take notes?
When taking notes, I learned that I was actually writing in sentences and not scribing down the shortcuts of the information, so after observing my “notes” for the first paragraph, I took this in consideration and reminded myself to take short notes.


What insights did you gain about narrative hooks that you may not have been so aware of before?
I have gained to grasp the concept of how there are different ways to constitute a powerful hook. For example how you can use a way of poetry to deliver the reader’s attention, or short sentences to create an effect.

What narrative hooks did you experiment with in your writing?
I had experimented with short sentences and also the cliffhanger types of hooks. I think that using different varieties of hooks will bring in the interest of the reader. it will also be very interesting, because I’m not using one type of hook, but a variety of them.

What discoveries did you encounter as you were vlogging?
Some discoveries that I encountered while I was vlogging was how it was so easy to figure out the common mistakes that I had in my writing piece and how my brain was already fixing the mistakes rather than me actually fixing it.

Historical Narrative Paragraphs VLOG
Historical Narrative with Musical Accompaniment VLOG
Reflection VLOG 

What is your BIGGEST TAKEAWAY (BIGGEST LEARNING) from our Revolutionary Thinker’s Project?
My biggest takeaway was how to use the resources purposefully, and how to incorporate them with the knowledge to innovate them into a polished piece of narrative. I think that this skill is very important in the future when creating upcoming pieces of work.