Astronomy Project

For my science project, I chose Venus as my topic and did research about Venus’ planet conditions. I learned a lot of new information that I didn’t know about. Such as the what Venus is made up of and why Venus is so hot. The reason why Venus is so hot is because of the runaway greenhouse effect. I thought the runaway greenhouse was very interesting, I didn’t think something like that could happen. What I could’ve done better on my project was to include more information about Venus, maybe some quotes from scientists and more pictures. I hope the runaway greenhouse effect doesn’t occur on Earth, because that would be a terrible disaster.

Introduction to Friendship

Inspired by the poem “Introduction to Poetry” by Billy Collins

Do you remember when friendship

was like a tree

so sturdy and so strong?


Or when you had to

press an ear against its door

to heed its advice?


I say drop a problem into a friendship

and watch him slowly

be dissolved and dismissed.


Or walk inside the friendship’s lost history

and feel the small broken pieces of mirror scattered everywhere

to find a treasure box hidden deep in a corner.


Do you remember when

you were trying so hard to find

that prize deep under the grains of sand

while still maintaining a big grin on your face?


Of course not

all you wanted to do was

use that friendship to get what you needed

then leave it like it was worth nothing but trash.


You never even tried to polish

that stone you found on the playground

into a crystal that would be with you forever

Sure, it would be time consuming

and take great effort but

it would always be there for you

hug you when you are down

and comfort you when you are stressed.

Hugging some Kid


Photo by Clover_1

Declaration of Independence


When in the course of our everyday school life, it becomes necessary for students to be set free from the absurd rules that have imprisoned us and devise a new set of regulations. During the many years at SSIS, we have abided by the rules set for us, but we are maturing and becoming more responsible. Therefore, we should now have the right to choose for ourselves the rules and guidelines that we will abide by. We will hereby state the causes of what made the student body feel the way they do.


Declaration of Student Rights:

We assume it’s apparent that God, the Creator of all of us, granted everyone the inalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Rules are established to keep students in control and make students think twice before they perform an action. However, if the rules are denying our inalienable rights, we have the ability to modify or replace them. That said, replacements and modifications should not be made over tolerable rules or plain dislikes. It is only when the rules are denying our inalienable rights that we are allowed to change it. When that time comes, it is the duty of the student body to remonstrate, protest and abolish the rules and establish new rules. -Such has been the distress of us, the student body; as we had elucidated, those are the reasons why it is crucial for us to proclaim why we need to modify and establish new rules. The rules of SSIS have not benefited or assisted the students in their learning, instead it has been restricting the students of learning or studying new information.



1) “Why do we need a tardy slip?”

Every morning, if a student is tardy coming to class, he/she has to go down to the office to get a tardy slip. Is it not exigent enough when a student has to miss a part of the class causing them not be able to have knowledge of what was taught, that the student has to miss more of class by making him/her go get a tardy slip? Having to acquire a tardy slip is an unreasonable regulation, it wastes extra minutes that could have been used it class to learn and understand new pieces of information.


2) ”We have been restricted to areas that we can hang out in during lunch break”

You announced that we were too noisy in the hallways during lunch break causing the teachers to be unable to concentrate their own work, therefore restricting us from being in the hallways during lunch break. We understand that teachers have important work to accomplish, but school is about the students, not the teachers. Lunch break is a time for students to have fun, socialize with friends, or just relax and walk around. But how is that possible after you’ve restricted us from being in the hallways? You’ve denied us our right of pursuing our happiness.


3) “Lunch is too late”

After learning and processing different types of new information, we are exhausted and hungry. After all, when people are learning new pieces of information, they burn a lot of calories. We have to endure 3 different classes before heading to lunch, during those 3 classes, students start to feel the hunger in the middle of the third class. Making it impossible to concentrate and focus for the remaining half of the class, preventing us from learning the information that we need to know.


Statements of Prior Attempts to Redress Grievances

After all the unjustified regulations of the school, we have petitioned, remonstrated, and supplicated. But however, all our efforts have been in vain, they were dismissed and disregarded. Not one person wanted to help us, even our parents. Therefore, we have come to a consensus, we believe that it is now the time for us to declare the rights of our independence in choosing the rules that we will abide by.


Declaration of Independence

We, therefore, the representatives of the students subjugated to the preposterous regulations of SSIS, present these facts for the rest of the world to see. We declare our independence from the the incompetent regulations set by the school to constrain us. In the name and by permission of every one of us, we declare that we ought to be free and independent  we give ourselves the ability to construct our own regulations for school like any teacher who is free and independent.


Lack of concentration

photo credit: apdk via photopin cc

Boston Bombing

Imagine. One day, you find yourself accused by hundreds and hundreds of people you’ve never met for something that you’ve never done. How would you feel? The article “F.B.I Released the Tsarnaevs’ Photos Because of Reddit and the Post” by Connor Simpson tells us the story of why the F.B.I decided to release the photos of the suspects early. People were using social media sites such as New York Post and Reddit to “help” identify suspects. But instead they only made things more chaotic by falsely accusing anyone they thought were suspects. “The F.B.I wanted to limit the damage being done to people being wrongly identified” so they decided to publish the faces of the suspects right after identifying them.


Connor Simpson is reminding us that sometimes we should just mind our own business and let other people, the professionals, do their job. If not, we would be a burden and make it harder for the pros do their job. According the the article, Simpson included the phrase, “Except they didn’t find a thing, and only helped add to the confusion surrounding the case.” This phrase means that, the people who tried to help identify the suspect through Reddit and the Post weren’t helpful at all, instead they only caused more confusion. Simpson also included the phrase, “It was just another example of cops being cops, and succeeding when we needed them most”. This phrase means that, cops are always going do their job, and protect everyone. Simpson’s message is important because we need to remember that in some situation we need to be a bystander. There’s no use of trying to help when you’re just causing more trouble for other people, in this case the cops. We also need to remember that we can trust the cops, they are going to get the job done successful!

When I first read this article, it reminded me of the Boston Massacre for some reason. Maybe because we’ve just learned about it recently and this kind of relates to the Boston Massacre. Like the Boston Massacre, this also happened in Boston and people died and many were injured. I can’t really connect much with this article because, I don’t live in Boston, I don’t know anyone from Boston, I’ve never participated in a marathon before and I’ve never been at a bombing incident. But even then, I still know how much help I would be if I was to identify the suspect. I would be nothing but a burden. I don’t have the skills or the talent to do that. But that’s why there are people like the cops and the F.B.I. They are there to for a purpose, and that purpose is to catch the bad guys and lock them up in jail. If you’re not a cop or a F.B.I. agent, then that probably means you don’t have the skills or the talent to catch criminals. Which probably means that you shouldn’t even think about trying to find the suspect, because all that will lead to is false accusations, people being hurt and chaos. We all need to learn to trust in the cops and the F.B.I, and believe that they will get the job done undoubtedly. “It was just another example of cops being cops, and succeeding when we needed them most.” Simpson used the word “another” in that phrase, which means that this isn’t the first time they’ve caught the bad guys. They’ve caught the bad guys more than once. And that is more than enough evidence showing that we should just the cops!

Submission and Death

Submission and Death

by: Siu Du

I deceived them

with my insidious smile

saying my feet was guided

by the lamp of experience

soon they will be betrayed with a kiss

and be bound hand and foot


It is not a question of

freedom and independance

but submission and death

They can not avert the storm

because I am invincible by any force

for I am supported by money and power

Whatever they have tried

is all in vain

There is no longer room for hope

Their chains are already forged

They should just shut their eyes

against the painful truth

and indulge in their illusions of hope


For they have to be ready

for the the decisions made by me

which is going to be

not liberty but death.









Some rights reserved by 401(K) 2013





Facebook and racism

I’m positive that you are someone who uses Facebook frequently. After all, Facebook is a commonly used social networking site. The article, “Spreading Racism via Facebook” by Tom Jacobs fill us in on what psychologists have been saying about how Facebook promotes racism. Psychologists Shannon Raunch and Kimberley Schanz states that, people who frequently use Facebook are “prone to express agreement with the material they see without thinking too deeply.” The reason is that, rather than using Facebook to search for information, they use Facebook to search for social inclusion. Raunch and Schanz conducted a research with participants reading three different versions of a Facebook Notes Page written by Jack Brown. Unsurprisingly, the participants were more positive with the messages containing racism, proving what the psychologists stated. Frequent Facebook users are easily influenced by negative racism messages before critically thinking because they feel a need to belong and connect to others. Are you one of many who use Facebook for social inclusion?

Tom Jacobs wants us to assess things more critically because our lack of critical thinking is affecting those around us negatively. Jacobs included in the article, “As a result, this study suggests, some pretty disturbing stuff is being received with uncritical response.” This phrase means that, when people like or share a post before thinking critically about it, even though it doesn’t affect them, it affects those around them in a negative. Imagine, one day, you decide to log on to Facebook to check out what your friends have been up to, then BAM! You see a post on your news feed written by a random stranger that insults your race, and guess what, that post has thousands of likes. How would you feel about that? Jacobs’ message is important because it is telling us to consider the feelings of the people being insulted or offended. No one likes to be insulted or offended, even you!

A lot of people use Facebook, including me. But I don’t understand how someone could possibly check their Facebook “20 or more times per day.” I mean, why would people do that? Isn’t 20 times per day just too much? Don’t they have something more important to do in their life? I think checking Facebook 3 times per week would be a better choice. Also, I think that people who log on to Facebook for social inclusion needs some help in their life. The article said that, “‘Agreement and positive attitudes are driven by a need to belong and connect with others.’” I think this means that people who search for social inclusion want to belong and connect with others. Which means that, they don’t have any friends that they belong to or connect with. That’s why they need to go online and search for social inclusion. I think if they have friends that they connect with, then they wouldn’t need to search for social inclusion online. Which is why they need help in their life, because everyone needs someone who can understand and connect with them. In my opinion, I think the phrase, “But critical thinking is often absent when people are motivated by the desire to be accepted or entertained.” from the article is very true. When people are bored and want to be entertained, we often don’t think as critically and we do things that are silly and have no purpose. For example, the Harlem shake. There really is no purpose behind doing the Harlem shake, yet why do people still do it? It’s because they are bored and have nothing to do. If you think about the Harlem shake critically, you would find it very stupid and annoying. It’s interesting to see how far people would go just to entertain themselves, even if it means doing something dumb, embarrassing or stupid.

Cure For HIV! Babies Only.

Don’t you think it’s unfair for some kids to grow up always having to take medications for HIV because of their parents irresponsible act? The article, “In Medical First, a Baby With HIV Is Deemed Cured” by Andrew Pollack and Donald G. McNeil Jr. informs us that doctors have finally found a cure for HIV. The patient that was cured is a baby born in rural Mississippi, this baby, so far, is the second person cured from HIV. One of the reason why the baby was cured was because the baby was treated with antiretroviral drugs early on when the virus didn’t have a chance to establish a hidden reservoir. This cure only works for newborns because the virus in all adults have already established a hidden reservoir and a taking drugs won’t work. Hopefully, doctors will build onto this cure and finally have a cure for adults with HIV!

Pollack is encouraging mothers in the world who are infected with HIV to cure their child early on even though it is costly. In the article, Pollack included the phrase, “While it might be difficult for some poorer countries to do, treating for only a year or two would be cost effective, “sparring the kid a lifetime of antiretroviral therapy,” said Rowena Johnston, director of research at amfAR” This phrase means that, while the cure might be a bit expensive, it is a better choice than having a kid take medications for the rest of his/her life. Pollack’s message important to consider because if you think about it, buying medications for a whole lifetime is more costly than a one or two years of treatment. Also, it is better to be cured than to grow up with HIV and not have another chance to be cured. So, to all mothers out there who have HIV, listen to Pollack’s advice, and free your child(ren) of HIV while there is still chance!

It’s quite impossible for me to connect with this article, because luckily, I wasn’t born with HIV or have any friends that have HIV. But I think this discovery is going to have a really big impact on the rest of the world. A lot of babies are going to be cured of HIV and the population is going to increase by a huge amount since there is nothing to restrain it from overpopulating. HIV is a new topic to me, and so I have a few questions. Is it possible for babies who are cured to be infected with HIV again if they are careless after they grow up? If so, wouldn’t the cure be pretty much useless if they are going to be infected again? And also, if an adult knew that they were going to be infected with HIV, and still decided to do what they were doing, and went to do doctor right after that, is it possible for them to be cured? Since the virus might not have “had an opportunity to establish a large reservoir” and “destroy the immune system” yet. Honestly, HIV is such a puzzling topic to understand. Hopefully, no other infections are going to appear before us.


How Much Do You Know About Modern Day Slavery?

I’m sure that you have a good education or a good job that you like. But there are people out there in the world that don’t have a good education or a good job, and evil people like slave masters, use that knowledge to trick people into slavery. You might not know much about modern day slavery, but after you watch the TED talk video “Photos That Bear Witness To Modern Slavery” by Lisa Kristine, your mind will be fully updated on modern day slavery. It is estimated that there are over 27 million people in the world that are enslaved. In India and Nepal, slaves are used to carry 18 bricks on their head at a time from the kilns to trucks that are hundreds of yards away for 16 to 17 hours without any breaks for food or water. In the Himalayas, there are children hoisting big sheets of slate from their head using homemade harnesses. In Kathmandu, in cabin restaurants forced prostitution occurs. These are only some examples of modern slavery, there are a whole lot more examples. “Slavery exists everywhere, nearly, in the world, and yet it is illegal everywhere in the world.”

Lisa Kristine is sharing the information that she found out about modern day slavery to the world and she hopes that the people who learn about modern day slavery will do something to free those who are enslaved. Kristine said, “I felt so horrible and honestly ashamed at my own lack of knowledge of this atrocity in my own lifetime, and I thought, if I don’t know, how many other people don’t know?” What Kristine said means that, if she didn’t know about modern day slavery, then not a lot of people in the world know about it,  and so she decided to unravel the secrets behind modern day slavery and share her knowledge to the world. Kristine concluded the TED talk saying, “I hope that these images awaken a force in those who view them, people like you, and I hope that force will ignite a fire, and that fire will shine a light on slavery, for without that light, the beast of bondage can continue to live in the shadows.” Kristine hopes that the people who view the TED talk will work together and find a way to free all those who are enslaved. The message that Lisa Kristine is trying to pass to us through the TED talk video is important. The reason is because, “These images are not of issues. They are of people, real people, like you and me, all deserving of same rights, dignity and respect in their lives.” Those who are enslaved are also people, human beings, and like every other human being, they deserve to be treated equally. Slaves are not disposable objects, slaves are human beings, just like us!

I once thought that slavery has nothing to do with me since I’m not the person who is enslaved. But now, after watching the TED talk, I know that I was wrong. Just because I am not a slave doesn’t mean slavery has nothing to do with me. Those who are enslaved are human beings, just like me. This fact makes slavery have everything to do with me, and it’s not only me, but also every single human being on Earth. As human beings, we all are responsible for helping end modern day slavery because human beings should be helping each other out, not using each other. But even though I say that, I can’t really do anything to contribute to free the slaves. In my opinion, I think one reason that modern day slavery still occurs is to satisfy the things that we need in our lives. Lisa Kristine included in her speech, “Today’s slavery is about commerce,” Because there are people who want to buy things that no one is willing to produce and make, slaves are used to make those products. I think it is the same with dangerous jobs. If no one is willing to risk their lives doing a dangerous job for a living then, slaves are used to do those jobs. When there is no one doing the job, the products won’t be produced. But the products can’t be left there undone because people like us need to use it in our lives. Therefore, slaves are used to produce them. If we want to free the slaves, something we need to think about is, who will continue to do the work that the slaves were doing?