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June 2nd 2010, only eight days left before this school year ends…

For me, this school year is a very special one because this year is my first year in this school. In the past year, I was sometimes happy, sometimes depressed, sometimes high, sometimes sad, and sometimes overwhelmed with homework. I mean, lots of things happened this year.

On August, when I first stepped into KIS as a student, I was overwhelmed with the facilities, students, everything. Everybody seemed so intimidating, and I was nervous for the whole time. I remember going to A-block English class, when I am in B-block, because I misunderstood the class schedule. That was the very first thing I did -walking into a class- in KIS, and that was mistaken! I was terribly frightened, and I asked Ms. P, my English teacher, I thought I was in trouble. But Ms. P said it’s nothing, it’s first day of school, and I’m a new student, so there’s nothing to worry about. And this is how I started my first day of the school year.

Slowly, I got to know some people, and I made some friends close enough to say hello in the hallway. I made some friends to sit together in lunch. Slowly, I learned to be part of KIS.

Since it will take forever to write about everything I’ve done in every single class, I’ll just concentrate on one class, my English class.

In the first English class, I remember one thing. I had to explain something, and I had this hand-gesture coming along with my explanation. Ms. P found it funny, and others found it funny. So they all laughed (I mean friendly). And that is when I first felt that I actually belong to this class.

Whenever I spoke in English class, Ms. P encouraged me (or maybe her personality is naturally that way) with smile, so I got to speak more. And I think that formed present me, who can speak in English class without any fear; English class has been like a comfortable, and family-like class (Ms. P sometimes said we are a family, too).

I learned, throughout this year, many grammars. I’m supposed to remember them all, but I’ll just try to remember some. I learned to use semi-colon, colon, dash, quotation mark, comma, and period. Then we moved on to more complexed grammar section, into sentence patterns.

In terms of novels, I read tons of pages of different novels. Those novels include: Beowulf, Grendel, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Dracula, and Brave New World. Along with learning the novels, I learned 6+1 trait, literary terms, discussion leaders. From this class, I learned to truly enjoy novels.

We also wrote One Paragraph Essays (OPE), and for each of them, we were to set a theme, and write about it with about 250 words. I think it really helped us to build up our theme-selecting skills and correct citation skills. I mean, for other classes, for some assignments, I feel that there is no need to do them, that it is waste of time. However in English, I’m being totally honest, but there was not an assignment that I felt unfair or useless to be doing. OPE, sometimes I was too lazy to write quality paragraph, but still, I feel I improved a lot from it. Comparative essay, after editing the essays numerous times, and getting corrected by the whole class, I feel my essay skill got much more improved, not only in fluency, but also in word choices, conventions, and ideas. The curriculum we learn in the class is, although it is a very challenging class for me, so far the most fruitful class in my English learning life. I feel I have improved a lot, both in speaking and writing, which I desperately need before I go to college. I’d really like to thank Ms. P for everything she did for us, and I hope she doesn’t lose that love for classes.

Done with academic learning, I’ll start with social learning from the class. Of course, I made friends from the class, but what I really feel I learned is how a teacher can form the relationship between classmates. For other classes, except few, I’m not that close with classmates. I don’t know why, but that’s the way it is. But in the English class, we’re more close. I think because she allows some time for jokes, sometimes she herself makes some jokes, demonstrating with actions. We laugh, and the class time becomes fun. In fun class, peers get closer.

I can’t explain in words how much I learned in the class throughout this year, but I hope I explained as much as I could. I’ll miss having English class, with Ms. P, as a sophomore, as a B-block student.

from http://www.flickr.com/photos/mindfulness/22455457

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I watched Slumdog Millionaire in English class. While I was watching the movie, I couldn’t stand but think about Brave New World, and relate the society in Slumdog Millionaire and that of in Brave New World. It just came to me naturally.

The society of Brave New World abhors the society of Slumdog Millionaire. I keep thinking that the type of society like Brave New World’s society was created because there existed Slumdog Millionaire-like society in wars of Brave New World. There existed poverty, there existed uncontrollable birthrate, there existed conflicting religions, violence, and numerous more.

Everything between those two works is different. Every factors differ, except one thing. They are similar in that they both have a caste system. It was interesting that the perfectionists like the members of Brave New World would adopt the idea of such an unfair and radical idea of hierarchy system. The question is still growing unsolved in my mind, so please do make some comments of your thoughts.

Source cited,

Slumdog shot

Brave New World

…or so he says. The man you see below is Prahlad Jani. He’s being studied by India’s Defense Research Organization, because Jani claims that he hasn’t had anything to eat or drink in 70 years. The Telegraph says Jani is known as a breatharian, i.e. he only needs air to survive. He’s been under observation for six days, and so far has shown no signs of lethargy despite his extreme diet. Maybe he’s already dead and he just doesn’t know it. Just kidding. Prahlad Jani breatharian Jani claims that he is “sustained by a goddess who pours an ‘elixir’ through a hole in his palate,” while others deem him to be a fraud. Still, the Indian government is keeping an eye on him, in hopes of learning something that could help soldiers last longer on the battlefield or stranded victims of disasters to hold on while waiting for help. The article does say that Jani’s claim has already been put to the test once, in 2003, but people began doubting his claim when he started to lose weight after (only) ten days without food and water.

source: http://technabob.com/blog/2010/04/30/this-man-hasnt-eaten-in-70-years/

7 decades of starvation for 82-year-old

Australian News.Net
Saturday 1st May, 2010

The Indian military's research wing is examining a man who claims to have not had anything to eat or drink for over 70 years.

India’s Defense Research Development Organization, a branch of the Indian military, whose scientists design drone aircraft, missiles and bombs have turned their attention to an 82-year old man who claims not to have had anything to eat or drink for over 70 years.

Prahlad Jani has been kept in isolation at a hospital in Ahmedabad, Gurjarat to ascertain the extent of his abilities and discover how they might be transferred to soldiers. He has not had anything to eat or drink for six days now and is showing no adverse signs of hunger or dehydration.

“If his claims are verified, it will be a breakthrough in medical science,” said director of the Defence Institute of Physiology & Allied Sciences, Dr G Ilavazhagan.

Dr Ilavazhagan added that his capabilities could help authorities train soldiers to go longer periods without food or water in adverse conditions, or help keep disaster victims alive until help arrives, though he was vague on the details of how a training scheme for either situation would be undertaken.

What is remarkable, however, is that after six days, Mr Jani appears unaffected by the fact that he has not eaten or drunk anything, or passed any urine or a stool. He remains in good health and is active, according to his doctors, who say that by 15 days they should see some muscle wastage, fatigue and dehydration.

15 days is the agreed period of the study, beyond that, organ failure becomes likely due to dehydration.

Mr Jani is regarded as a ‘breatharian’ who lives on a ‘spiritual life-force’. He credits his ability to go without food or water to a goddess who pours an elixir through a hole in his palate.

Highly regarded by some as a holy man, and derided by others who claim him to be nothing more than a village fraud, Indian authorities will know in another 9 days whether they have in their care the resource for their next generation of elite soldiers.

source : http://www.australiannews.net/story/629648

Lately, I’ve been playing around with Garageband, the greatest Mac program ever!

What can you do with the program? Well, A LOT, I could say. And now I am going to introduce what we can do, and how we can use Garageband.

First, when you click Garageband, you’ll see :

if you press piano, you can do three things.

1. connect keyboard with your Mac, and play music. Garageband will record, with very good quality of sound, everything you press from your keyboard. You can also choose the type of sound like guitar, bass, drum, flute, basically everything! With only a keyboard and a Mac, you can create music very easily. Here is a music I created using this device. Mind that I barely know about music, which means you can also make music like this easily.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GAupozIX3gw

2. Use already recorded sounds to your own, creative music!

here’s an example that I made, using only Macbook

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZWZTFgY6A70

3. Create music, only using Macbook. You can make sounds by pressing (awsedftghujiklp;’ <- these keys) certain keys.

As you can see from the photo above, you can change octave, and literally play music, with just a computer!

Here’s an example I made using this method.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L5hgw0eiNlo

These are all I know about Garageband so far. Anything I learn more about it, I’ll update, so keep track of my blog!

In English class, my English teacher graciously awarded us with a movie!

However, the movie wasn’t just about watching movie and having fun; instead, it was about learning Dracula,  a novel that our class has been reading through for several weeks.

Anyways, the movie was entertaining. It was entertaining despite its outlandish manner of effects, actors, etc. Nevertheless, the director of the movie, either intentionally or coincidentally – I guess the former- distorted the contents of the novel.

For example, Renfield didn’t come out on the Count Dracula’s castle scene. However, in the movie, he does. I think the director has put him in the earlier scenes for greater entertainment.

Personally, I think it was a bad idea. A movie that is based off a novel truly shines only when the movie contents has efficiently reflected the contents of the novel it is following.

Anyways, it was fun to watch the movie. And watching movie, though distorted, was fun to watch. The director hasn’t completely ignored the literature. He had at least considered some literary terms such as metaphor, juxtaposition, personification, simile, etc by reflecting certain characteristics in the movie (like using different color).

To finish with, the movie was fun to watch, be I’d like to warn those Dracula-movie-watchers that the movie’s content is not precisely what is in the novel. So if you want to know the story of Dracula, you’d better read novel, not movie!

(image from: http://www.flickr.com/photos/violentz/1563959305/sizes/l/)

Learning, for the most part, is fun. I learn something, and I get to use them.

The term ‘learning’ includes every single information, at least for me. When I play a video game, and I learn some new way to kill a monster, then it is also a park of learning.

If I learn that a particular person laughs when I take some particular action, I try to do same thing when that particular person is around.

Learning is not confined to ‘studying’ conception. It also includes small, trivial things around us.

It includes EVERYTHING. Like I said, we watch Discover Channel to find out whales are actually animal, not fish. We listen to radio, and learn that Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie broke up.

And that’s what I like about learning. We should enjoy learning. As students, we can’t avoid learning. And if we can’t avoid it, we should enjoy it.

Learning Pyramid

My Weaknesses…

My weakness is that I can’t keep something in progress for long. If I decide to memorize words everyday, it only lasts for few days; I’m inconsistent.

As a result from that, I have this varied distribution of talents; I can draw, I can play piano, I can act, I can study, but only up to certain degrees. That’s why I always envy those people who are expert in one area.

I need to learn from my father, who, unlike me, is very consistent in what he’s doing. When he starts some habit, it lasts for years.

My another weakness is that sometimes I am impulsive; I can’t stay away from things I ought not to do. I shouldn’t play computer games when I have homework. However, still, I can’t resist my desire. I need to be less vulnerable to those desires.

My final weakness, I guess, and I hope, is that I’m impatient. When things get too draggy, my body screams out from boredom. I need to be more patient!

The photo is from: http://www.flickr.com/photos/65986072@N00/952968377