Mi Viaje a Madrid!

El veinte de diciembre, mi familia y yo nos fuimos en un avión de Aeroméxico a Madrid. Empacamos la ropa de frío, los pantalones largos y las chaquetas porque el clima es frío y ventoso, pero muy bonito. También llevé aperitivos y pequeños juegos variados en el avión porque el vuelo era de más de 18 horas.

Llegamos al aeropuerto el 21 de diciembre por la mañana. Después de conseguir nuestro equipaje, pasamos seguridad y Llamamos un taxi para ir a nuestro hotel llamado el Intercontinental de Madrid.

Al día siguiente, fuimos el Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía. Hay muchas hermosas obras de arte y exposiciones de varios artistas. También hay una obra maestra de Pablo Picasso llamada Guernica. Muchas gente viene a ver El Guernica porque es inspirado en la guerra civil española.

Mi lugar favorito fue el Parque del Retiro porque tiene jardines, lagos, parques infantiles y otras cosas más. Mis hermanos y yo alquilamos un barco para remar en el lago. Me recordó a mi viaje al río Mekong donde mi familia y yo también alquilamos barcos y exploramos el río.

El último día, nosotros fuimos el Mercado San Miguel. Es uno de los mercado más antiguo y más hermoso de Madrid.  Hay treinta y tres puestos con muchos productos frescos y las comidas. Fuimos a muchos bares de tapas y restaurantes que sirven deliciosos platos.

Comimos Cocido Madrileño todas las noches porque es muy sabroso. Es un platillo muy famoso de Madrid. El platillo tiene sopa, garbanzos, verduras, patatas y carne. El restaurante de la ciudad La Bola tiene Cocido Madrileño y es muy delicioso. Este platillo es como una comida vietnamita porque también hay carne, verduras y sopa.

Nos alojamos en Madrid por una semana, así que volamos de regreso a Vietnam el 28 de diciembre. Estaba muy triste por salir de Madrid porque es una ciudad hermosa y divertida. Quiero visitar Madrid de nuevo pronto!

Human Rights Project

The most satisfying part was the final product because I thought that my group and I did a very successful project. In the end,  we got very good results. The process was very difficult, we had a lot of aspects planned for our project. We planned to create a Powtoon, edit a video from a North Korean former prisoner’s interview, and make a script to do a voice over for the Powtoon video.

A majority of other students in my class chose to do a presentation on Google Presentation. My group and I choose a direct route to take, we wanted to be unique and have something new be put out. Our final decision was to use Powtoons to create our presentation.

Astronomy Unit Reflection

Our science class was introduced to the independent study of astronomy. We were assigned to choose a topic from astronomy, come up with at least 3 essential questions, research and answer them, and create a presentation. I choose to do the independent study on solar systems because I wanted to have an insight on the planet I live on, so that leads to the solar system.


What is the solar system?

The solar system is a collection of eight planets (Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune) and their moons in an orbit around the sun. It also consists of the planets’ satilittles, numerous comets, moons, asteroids, meteoroids, dwarf planets, the interplanetary medium, and very thin gas.

What is the relationship between the sun and planets?

Planets closer to the sun are relatively small, composed of mostly rocks, more dense, and have few or no moons with higher temperatures. Planets further away are relatively large, mostly gaseous, ringed, less dense, and have many moons with cooler temperatures. The planet’s speed up when they are near the Sun.

Where are we in the universe?

In the universe, our solar system is located in the Milky Way. Specifically, Earth is at the edge of the spiral arm called the Orion Arm (Orion Spur). Furthermore, the Milky Way is located in a supercluster of 100,000 galaxies called the Laniakea.


For the project, I decided to do a physical presentation. I thought that science fair theme poster and model would be best to present my knowledge on the solar system. My poster was split into three sections, for each essential questions. The sections contained my answers to the questions and pictures. I planned to do a model of the solar system, the sun and eight planets. The model wasn’t to exact scale, but it gave you a brief idea of which planet is bigger and what the color of the planet is.

IMG_1804 (1)FullSizeRender (3)


We learned a lot of new lifesaving techniques, we can use when rescuing a victim. We focused on 3 main rescues; front, rear, reach/extension. My favorite rescuing technique is the reach/extension because it is simple, but it puts less of a risk on you and the victim. We have played a series of different and fun games in this swimming unit, but my favorite would have to be water polo. Water polo is my favorite because it is much more competitive than most games and it’s overall the most fun game in swimming. I would rate myself 10/10 for effort and participation because my friends and I would always swim the amount that our teachers tell us. I participate in games and make a big impact on my team.


CSI stands for Color, Symbol, and Image. My CSI will be about the word ‘textile mill.’ I choose the color grey to portray the word ‘textile mill’ because a textile mill is a factory. Factory and machinery leads me to the color grey. I drew a ball of yarn with two needles, I chose to draw this because textile can be made from knitting. So , I drew the ball of yarn with two needles to represent textile mill. My image represents a factory at work and a textile is simply a factory.

Emily Industrial Revolution CSI (2)

Newton Vehicle (Blog Post #3)

Designing a vehicle incorporating Newton’s Laws is more difficult than you think. My group and I had to change or designs three times to have it accelerate at least 1.5 meters. Our first design idea was too use coke and mentos to accelerate the vehicle. We made a wooden popsicle stick base, which we ditched right away because we soon realize the base was way too heavy. For the second design, we kept  the coke and mentos idea, but used a big juice box as our base because a big empty juice was a much lighter alternative. The wheels were the big problem for our second design, we planned to use styrofoam wheels. We never realize that styrofoam can cause so much friction, so much friction that the vehicle didn’t even move. Eventually we had to change the wheels, we exchanged them for bottle caps. Finally, the vehicle could move. But, then the coke and mentos was not strong enough to move the vehicle for at least 1.5 meters. We did 7 trials with 7 bottles of coke and it hardly reached 1 meter. We were going to give up because we had already wasted so much time, effort, coke, and mentos. Fortunately, we came together and decided to have a balloon to accelerate the vehicle. We didn’t have to throw away our juice box base and wheels, we just left out the coke and metos, and taped a straw on top with a balloon tied on it. The results we absolutely amazing, the vehicle not only accelerated further than 1 meter, but it accelerated more than the required distant. This design process has taught me to think about all the components very carefully because the smallest components can determine how far it accelerates.

If I did this project again, my design process would be much more carefully crafted. I would focus on every single detail that could affect my vehicle. Also, if my first design process idea or design totally fails, I would take time and think about what was the main problem. So, we don’t have to do three trials because it will be a total waste of time. Now, I have a much deeper understanding about Newton’s Laws. I learnt that Newton’s 1st Law states that an object will keep moving or stay at rest, until an outside force acts upon it. So my balloon powered vehicle will not move, until I blow into the balloon and it releases all the force out. Newton’s 2nd Law states that an object with a greater mass will need more force to move than an object with less mass. We tried to make our vehicle as light as possible so it would travel further with the same amount of force. For Newton’s 3rd Law it states that for every exerted force, in exchange an equal amount of force will be exerted back in the opposite direction. If I blow air into my balloon in one direction, the air (force) will exert out the opposite direction leading it to accelerate because of action and reaction. Without Newon’s Laws, how my vehicle accelerates will be a mystery, but Newton’s Laws have given us knowledge on how it is possible for the vehicle to accelerate. Next time, if I did this project again, I would probably use a smaller base for the balloon because the juice box is quite big. Instead of the big juice box, exchanging it for small milk carton will decrease the mass and the balloon’s force would accelerate the vehicle further with the same amount of force. If I had to do another project somewhat related to this, maybe a project using the Newton’s laws. I would want to try again with the coke and mentos. The coke and mentos just needed more constructing and planning time. I think if we could have found diet coke, the results would be different because diet coke has the strongest reaction and incorporate the bigger bottle of coke because all the videos I see of coke and mentos rocket/car, they used the 2 litre bottle.

Second Design
Second Design
First Design
First Design
Final Design
Final Design
Finished Vehicle
Finished Vehicle

Newton Vehicle (Blog Post #2)

Newton’s 1st Law states that an object will keep moving or stay at rest unless an outside force is acted upon it. Our vehicle design incorporated Newton’s 1st Law because our vehicle doesn’t have any control over it’s movements, it can’t move or stop on it’s own. We plan to control our vehicle by adding a few mentos in the bottle of coke when we want it to accelerate. For Newton’s 2nd Law, it states that an object’s mass and amount of force being applied determines the object’s acceleration. In our original model, we put together a base out of large popsicle sticks because we were afraid the weight of the bottle of coke would only be stable with the popsicle base. But, then we realize the bottle of coke was already way too heavy and it wouldn’t accelerate very far, so we had to get rid of some weight, we eventually ditched the popsicle base. We revised and edited our vehicle design, we decided to use an empty large juice box as our base. The large juice box was a much lighter alternative, we hoped it would decrease the mass and accelerate further. Newton’s 3rd Law states that for every exerted force, in exchange an equal amount of force will be exerted back in the opposite direction. When we place the mentos in the coke, the coke will explode out of one direction and move the opposite direction because of action and reaction.

Screenshot from 2014-12-07 18:44:29
Original Design
Screenshot from 2014-12-10 21:10:56
Revised/Edited Design

Gỏi cuốn: A Dish of Celebration

Laughter of enjoyment, chatters about life, the scent of food flooding the house. Despite me living almost half across the world from a part of my family, when I come to visit we have the most memorable nights. For me, my mom’s side of the family all currently live in the state of Georgia. I only get to visit twice a year, winter and summer break. Because of that, my family makes sure that before I leave we have the biggest and most delicious feast. I remember last summer, the night before I left my family had a huge celebration. All of my relatives; cousins, aunts, uncles, nephews, and even some close friends came over to our house. We all cooked and brought in food to share, the one dish that my family always have is Gỏi cuốn. Gỏi cuốn is pork, prawns, vegetables, rice vermicelli wrapped in a rice paper roll. I remember that night like it was yesterday, we all ate while we told stories and memories about the past. 

My family might do it a little different from others because we almost never have Gỏi cuốn wrapped before hand. We lay out plates of the fillings. So there would be a plate of rice paper with a large dish of water to soften it with. Another plate for the boiled prawns, one for the boiled pork belly, a big bowl for all the vegetables, and a plate for the rice vermicelli. With that, each of us can add the filling and the ingredients we want in our rolls to our desire taste. This recipe always reminds me of the fun times that I have spent with my family. 


How To Make Gỏi cuốn:


Makes about 15 Gỏi cuốn

*You can always have more or less of the ingredients, be free with the ingredients*

*Sorry for the inconvenience of the measurements*

  • 300 grams of pork belly
  • 200 grams shrimpIMG_0907
  • 200 grams of rice vermicelli
  • 1-2 heads of lettuce
  • cucumbers (any amount)
  • mint leaves (any amount)
  • cilantro (any amount)
  • chives (any amount)
  • 15 rice papers
  • 3/4 cup hoisin sauce
  • 1/4 cup coconut milk
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon of minces garlic
  • 1/2 cup of roasted peanuts


The Filling:

  1. IMG_0903Boil the pork belly in a pot for 25-35 (depending on how thick the pork belly is), place the pork in the pot with water just enough to cover the pork belly.
  2. Add a pinch of salt into the boiled water.
  3. To test if the pork is fully cooked, stab the pork with a chopstick, if no blood comes out, it is cooked.
  4. Cut the pork belly into thin slices.
  5. Peel the prawns and boil them in water for a few minutes until they are fully cooked with a pinch of salt.
  6. Cut the prawns in half vertically and remove the black lining
  7. Cook the rice vermicelli in a pot of boiling water for a few minutes (follow package instructions on how long to cook them).
  8. Drain the rice vermicelli and rinse them in cold water over a drainer.
  9. Cut the cucumbers into vertical slices about a finger length long.
  10. Wash and drain all the vegetables (lettuce, cucumbers, mint leaves, cilantro, and chives).



Assemble Process:

  1. Dip a rice paper in a dish of lukewarm water evenly.
  2. Lay the rice paper on a flat surface.
  3. Now you make put as many or as little of the filling and ingredients as you want into a roll.



  1. Pour a tablespoon of olive oil in a saucepan on medium heat.
  2. Place the one tablespoon of minced garlic in.
  3. Stir the two ingredients around until the garlic has turned golden.
  4. Put the 3/4 cup of hoisin sauce.
  5. Pour in the cup of water.
  6. Add in the 1/4 cup of coconut milk.
  7. Stir all the ingredients together, until well combined.
  8. Crush up the 1/2 cup of roasted peanuts.
  9. Put the sauce in a small bowl and sprinkle the crushed peanuts on top.