Memories Written Differently – Sonnet

Oh, how I wished for you on summer’s night.

Your eyes had stars that sparkled in night sky,

Your smile so wide that turned the dark so bright,

But now I know that it was all a lie.


I still remember walking next to you,

My hand in yours, our shoulders side by side.

Your eyes met mine, your eyes so full of blue.

But now it seem, the memories belied.


The coldness in your voice, the icy frost.

They leave me broken, shattering my heart.

My eyes see blur, I’m all alone, I’m lost.

What hurts the most is “You should have been smart.”


You never cared, I now can see clearly,

Our memories, they’re written differently.

Vona and Kim P.E. Volleyball Video Reflection

This video shows you how to overhand pass in volleyball. The overhand pass is the most used and most accurate pass in volleyball. In order to correctly overhand pass, you need to be in your ready position. In the ready position, you must be under the ball, and your feet should be slightly wider than your shoulder width with one foot slightly ahead of the other. You need to keep your eyes on the ball through the triangle you created above your forehead, your hands should not be flat and the ball should never touch your palm. When you are in contact with the ball, you fully extend your body and push. Then, you finish your pass and resume your ready position. Our drill is called “Pass and Run”. You need at least three people to do this drill. Stand facing each other at least 4 meters apart and practice over hand pass. When you pass, run over to the other side and continue. We clearly explained each steps of the overhand pass by speaking and showing with pictures/videos, and we introduced an easy drill to help practice the overhand pass. I think by making this video, my partner and I learned a lot more about overhand pass, and now we know the correct way to do the most accurate pass in volleyball. Thank you for watching!

Story of Xiao Hong (小红的故事)

你好! 我叫小红。我是中国人。 我上八年级,十四岁。我最喜欢的颜色是粉红色,我也喜欢吃巧克力。我家有四口人。爸爸,妈妈,哥哥和我。我的哥哥上大学。我的最好的朋友是美丽。她从美国来。她也上八年级。她最喜欢的颜色是黄色。她家有三口人,她爸爸,她妈妈,美丽和她的小狗狗。她的狗名叫高兴。美丽很漂亮。她有高高的鼻子,大大的眼睛。她的眼睛咖啡色的。她也有红红的嘴巴。美丽很高的,她喜欢踢足球。她很善良,她的性格很外向。很多人都喜欢她。昨天我和美丽去吃午饭在一个餐厅。我吃了春卷,她吃了饺子。我们吃完的时候,我的妈妈打电话说我的哥哥生病了。我和美丽回家给我哥哥煮稀粥。在四点半,美丽要回家,但是下雨了,她不可以回家。这就是我的故事,谢谢!再见!

nǐ hǎo! wǒ jiào xiǎo hóng. wǒ shì zhōngguó rén. wǒ shàng bā niánjí, shísì suì. wǒ zuì xǐhuan de yánsè shì fěnhóng sè, wǒ yě xǐhuan chī qiǎokèlì. wǒjiā yǒu sì kǒu rén. bàba, māmā, gēgē hé wǒ. wǒ dí gēgē shàng dàxué. wǒ de zuì hǎo de péngyǒu shì měilì. tā cóng měiguó lái. tā yě shàng bā niánjí. tā zuì xǐhuan de yánsè shì huángsè. tā jiā yǒu sānkǒu rén, tā bàba, tā māmā, měilì hé tā de xiǎo gǒu gǒu. tā de gǒu míng jiào gāoxìng. měilì hěn piàoliang. tā yǒu gāo gāo de bízi, dàdà de yǎnjīng. tā de yǎnjīng kāfēisè de. tā yěyǒu hóng hóng de zuǐba. měilì hěn gāo de, tā xǐhuan tī zúqiú. tā hěn shànliáng, tā dì xìnggé hěn wàixiàng. Hěnduō rén dōu xǐhuan tā. zuótiān wǒ hé měilì qù chī wǔfàn zài yīgè cāntīng. wǒ chīle chūnjuǎn, tā chīle jiǎozi. wǒmen chī wán de shíhou, wǒ de māmā dǎ diànhuà shuō wǒ dí gēgē shēngbìngle. wǒ hé měilì huí jiā jǐ wǒ gēgē zhù xī zhōu. zài sì diǎn bàn, měilì yào huí jiā, dànshì xià yǔle, tā bù kěyǐ huí jiā. zhè jiùshì wǒ de gùshì, xièxiè! zàijiàn!

Hello! My name is Xiao Hong. I am Chinese. I’m in grade eight, fourteen years old. My favorite color is pink, and I like to eat chocolate. There are four people in my family. Father, mother, brother and me. My brother is in college. My best friend is Maylee. She’s from the United States. She is also in eighth grade. Her favorite color is yellow. There are three people in her family, her father, her mother, Maylee and her little dog. Her dog is named happy. Maylee is very pretty. She has a high nose, big eyes. Her eyes are brown. She also has a red mouth. Maylee is very tall, she likes to play football. She is very kind, she has a very outgoing personality. A lot of people like her. Yesterday I went to eat lunch with Maylee at a restaurant. I ate spring rolls, and she ate dumplings. When we finished eating, my mom called and said my brother was sick. We went home to my brother and made him porridge. At 4:30 Maylee had to go home, but it started raining, so she couldn’t go home. This is my story, thank you! Goodbye!


Yearbook- Photoshop Skills


In yearbook, we learned many new skills in Adobe Photoshop. We learned how to fix underexposure, add more colors to the photo, how to fix backlit photos, etc. People tend to think Photoshop as some skills that are really complicated and hard to use, but surprisingly, these skills only took about three or four steps!

How to fix underexposed photos:

Underexposure fix was the first skill we learned. Underexposure means your photo is too dark. In order to fix an underexposed photo, you have to press Ctrl + J to duplicate the layer. Then, all you have to do is go to the Layers panel, click the Blending Mode dropdown list, and choose Screen. You can always drop the Opacity if you find the effect too strong.


Before fixing underexposure & after

How to add more colors to the photo:

Sometimes, your photo might be too flat. Which means, there are no image-popping colors. Then what you can do is to add more colors to the photo, using this simple skill. First, you have to press Ctrl + J to duplicate the layer. Then, once again, click on the Layers panel and choose Overlay from the Blending Mode dropdown list. Like what you did with underexposure fix, you may always drop the Opacity.


Before blending colors in (overlay) & after

How to fix backlit photos:

Sometimes, you might forget to turn on your flash while taking a picture. Which will give you a result of backlit photos. In order to fix backlit photos, you must make another layer first by pressing Ctrl + J. Then, from the top corner of the Photoshop, choose Image, then Adjustments, then Shadows/Highlights. This step will bring you a pop-up screen of Shadows and Highlights. Drag the Shadows slider to the right to brighten up the dark areas. If you are not happy with the vibrance of the colors, click the Show More Options checkbox. Then, under the Adjustment section, drag the Color Correction slider to the right to increase the intensity of the colors. You can also drag the Midtone Contrast slider to the right to increase the contrast of the area that was brightened. Click OK when you’re done.

sep04_sierra,vona,nhu_practice557   sep04_sierra,vona,nhu_practice_fixed557










What I Learned From Yearbook So Far…

Image by Ms Mckinnon
Image by Ms Mckinnon

It’s been a month since school started. I am new to yearbook class, yet I am really excited. We are mostly still newbies to yearbook, and we didn’t get so far to making spreads quite yet. We were introduced to our camera, and had many chances to try out and practice taking photos. We learned how to take better quality pictures, how to take group pictures, and how to batch rename pictures in Adobe Bridge.

First, we learned how to take better quality pictures. We got a handout introducing the principles of composition, also known as, taking great photos. There are eleven principles of composition that we learned: format, center of visual interest (CVI), simplicity, maximum use of picture area, camera angle (perspective), selective focus, balance, rule of thirds, framing, repetition of form, and leading lines. I think the most important ones were center of visual interest, camera angle and the rule of thirds. Center of visual interest is the main subject of the photograph. It is important because every single yearbook photo needs a CVI. Camera angle is also known as perspective. Taking a photo from different camera angles/perspective can give you a different view of the subject, and it can add to the story. The rule of thirds is placing the CVI at one of the points of intersection when you divide the photo into nine equilateral rectangles (like a tic-tac-toe board). Placing the CVI in the mechanical center of the image often can be boring.

Then, we learned how to take group pictures. Group pictures are usually hard because controlling a group of people is not an easy task. It is much more easier if you have a photographer and a director. Director needs to direct people around in order to take a good group photo. Sometimes, it is a better idea to ask a teacher for help to direct the people. That way, the process will be much quicker because students tend to listen to teachers better than listening to other students. I learned that group picture is harder to take with a large group of people. I also learned that it is really important for the students to be in order, and doing the exact same pose (for example, putting your hands on the side). It is also really important to have a background that is not too distracting. It is okay to move things around if necessary, and it might help if you give levels to your group by having a few sitting or kneeling.

Lastly, we learned how to batch rename the photos in Adobe Bridge. It was pretty easy, and it was really useful to rename photos all together at once.

I am still barely introduced to yearbook, and I know there are still plenty of things to learn. It might not be easy, like taking a group picture, but I am ready for it. I am ready to make one of the best SSIS middle school yearbook!

40 Book Challenge Reflection

Image by Miss McKinnon
Image by Miss McKinnon

This year, I read 35 books out of 40 books. I read many books in Historical Fiction, Mystery, Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Realistic Fiction, but I struggled reading Biography, Informational, Traditional Literature, and Auto Biography. This year I have improved a lot as a reader. I am reading more challenging books with harder vocabularies, and I am confident about reading books with challenging topics. 40 book challenge is a great challenge that push us to read more books,  as well as giving us a chance to explore various of genres. I wouldn’t say I enjoyed it, but it definitely helped me a lot to develop as a better reader. I always liked to read because it was really cool how few words can build up a whole new world of imagination. I believe reading is a communication between the world of literature and yourself. The amount of books you read means more knowledge in you. Read. Reading is the key to everything.

Typhoon (Last Free Write of the Year)

Image by FnJBnN

In the middle of an enormous ocean, a lonely ship was sailing toward East. On the ship there were an Egyptian girl, a scientist, a mythologist, a sea captain, an odd eye sailor, a colorful parrot, and very lastly Sailor Joe. They sailed through the calm sea, until they met a wild typhoon, out of control as a feverish wheel. The odd eye sailor tried his best, but couldn’t get the ship out of the typhoon’s tight grip. Poor Sailor Joe, he cried, he hugged his parrot, and said goodbye. Scientist and mythologist clammed tight against each other as the ship spun and spun like a merry-go-around. While everyone was running wild, frightened, the little Egyptian girl quietly stood upon the edge of the ship. She started singing with her calm, beautiful voice. Surprisingly, the wild sea slowly started to calm down. The big waves died, and the sky was clear once again. Everyone started cheering for the Egyptian girl, but she was not there anymore. Then they all realized, that the little Egyptian sacrificed herself for everyone.

40 Book Challenge Self-Assessment

Image by brody4

It is almost the end of May, and we only have three weeks of school left. I read 34 books so far, and I am lacking a book in informational, three books in biography, one book in traditional literature, and another one in auto biography. My goal for the next two weeks to finish 40 book challenge is to read at least one or two books a week, and read for at least one hour a day (not including SSR time at school). I think the best way to finish 40 book challenge in two weeks of time is to find books that I will be interested to read.

Story of a Red Blood Cell

Hi! My name is Freddy, and I am a red blood cell. Today, I will tell you the story of my life and my job in your body. Here we go!

First, I was at the red bone marrow with all my siblings, white blood cells and the platelets. Then, I got pushed out of the red bone marrow to join the bloodstream along with many other blood cells. I got to the right atrium of the heart, and went through the tricuspid valve to the right ventricle. There, I got pumped through the pulmonary valve, and into the pulmonary artery. The pulmonary artery connects all the way to the lungs, I picked up an oxygen molecule at the lung, and started out again. I traveled through the pulmonary veins to the left atrium, and to the left ventricle through the bicuspid (mitral) valve. Then, I got pumped (more like pushed really hard) through the aortic semilunar valve to the aorta (the largest artery in the body). From the arteries, I got sent out to the body tissue by the capillaries to deliver the goods, oxygen molecule and the glucose that I picked up from digestive system. In the capillaries, oxygen diffuses into the bloodstream, while carbon dioxide diffuses out, this process is called the diffusion. As I dropped off the goods to the body tissue, I picked up the carbon dioxide waste (which is made when body cell uses the basic source of energy, glucose to form energy). Then, through the superior and inferior vena cava veins, I came back to the right atrium. Where I start out the journey over and over again.

It is indeed hard work, traveling around the entire body for just sixty seconds, and not resting. Sadly, I can’t just go straight from the left ventricle to the right ventricle because septum is separating two chambers from each other. A red blood cell like me live for about four months, and today is my last day in your circulatory system. It was nice being here, and working for your body. I wish to meet you in my next life, bye!

Cool Fact!

  • Blood is a tissue, and it contains plasma and specialized cells. Plasma is the liquid part of the blood which contains dissolved material and water.

  • Right atrium has a group of cells called the “pacemaker” that sends out signal to that make the heart muscle contract to regulate heartbeat.