Friday, 9 December 2016

Looking Back on 21st Century Literacy

For my last English assignment in grade 9, I am thinking back and reflecting on parts of my learning.  I will be talking about my strengths, skills and strategies, growth, areas of need as a reader, writer, oral communicator and media interpreter. I will be using evidence in text form and through photos.  All photos will be at the end of my assignment.  

Flowers for Algernon


When I was reading the book, “Flowers for Algernon”, I had some strengths such as being able to see the bigger issues. Some of the bigger issues in the book were: Should we “play God” and change people’s intelligence? How should we inform people with low IQs about surgery risks that they cannot understand? Should parents be allowed to hit their children? These are just a few examples of some of the bigger issues in “Flowers for Algernon”.

One of the skills that I had when reading “Flowers for Algernon” was being able to contribute and add to our group conversations. To help me understand and take in more of the information I used two strategies. One strategy was to use an audiobook to help me understand what I was reading. Another strategy was reducing the number of notes I took so that I focused on understanding what I was reading rather than what I should write down.  

I think that I have grown a lot by reading “Flowers for Algernon” by thinking more about some ethical issues that I have not thought of before. One of the ethical issues that I had not thought about was how we treat people with low IQs. One of the questions that I have thought about is: “What is the best way to help or treat people with low IQs?”

I had four areas of need in “Flowers for Algernon”.  These areas are: as a reader, writer, oral communicator and media interpreter. My area of need as a reader is that I find reading very challenging so when I was reading the book I used an audiobook. My computer read the book to me while I looked at the text.  My area of need as a writer is that when I write notes down while I read something, I sometimes lose the information that I just read. This is because I'm focused on writing and spending so much energy on what I'm going to write down. This time for “Flowers for Algernon” I did not take very many notes and I understood more of what I was reading. While I was doing this I remembered more than I usually do. My area of need as an oral communicator is that when I am in the discussion groups I am pretty good at presenting and supporting my ideas. One thing that I could work on is adding to other people’s ideas and not just talking about only my ideas. My area of need as a media interpreter was when I watched the movie, Charlie. I had trouble taking notes when the movie was playing. I did try to take notes while the movie was playing but found that I could not understand what was happening in the movie because I cannot write and listen at the same time. I also had difficulty understanding the movie because of the speed and also it was so different from the book. I did not know how to compare the movie to the book because it was so different.

Presentation Skills


The next unit of study that I will be talking about is Presentation Skills.  Here are my strengths with presentation skills: I can make engaging slideshows and Kahoots quizzes. I also practice my presentations a lot before doing them and I am told that I do not look nervous when I am presenting.   

A skill that I use in presentation skills is to always practice and go over my presentation before I present. This is a skill because it makes it easier to present the presentation as I am more familiar with my topic. A strategy that I use is to have jot notes on cue cards. This helps take some of the pressure off. That way when I am presenting to the audience and if I get nervous and might forget what I'm going to say, I can look down quickly at the cue cards and get back on track.

I think that I've grown a lot by learning how to make good presentations. By doing it more and more, I now know the process of preparing and making presentations so I can now make presentations more quickly.

I had three areas of need in presentation skills. These areas are as a reader, writer and oral communicator. My area of need as a reader is to be able to make easy, to read cue cards so that when I am presenting I know what I am going to say. My area of need as a writer is using tools on my computer such as spell check and Google Read and Write to help me get my writing and ideas down for my presentation. My area of need as an oral communicator is needing to try to memorize all of my presentation and to try not to get as nervous when I am presenting.


Week 3 Technology/Poetry


I will now be reflecting upon a couple of different weeks of my learning. In week three our theme was technology and poetry. Our tasks that week included creating a digital portfolio (blog) as well as a poem analysis on a song written by Gord Downie.

This week we also read the book “Flowers for Algernon” one of my strengths was when I was reading the book I really could understand the themes and messages. For example, one of the themes in the book is friendship including not being able to see who your real friends are.
 
I had some skills and strategies that I used this week. A skill that I had was helping design a really engaging slideshow for the poem analysis on one of Gord Downie’s songs. The song that I did was “Born in the Water”.  A strategy that I used when I was having trouble understanding the criteria for the poem analysis, I asked someone to go over the criteria so that then I understood what I needed to do. Here was the criteria for the poem analysis.

One way that I grew was in creating and posting on my blog. I have always been nervous about posting anything on the internet where everyone can see it. When I started posting more and more often, I started to feel more comfortable uploading to my blog.

I had three areas of need that week. These areas were as a reader, writer and oral communicator. My area of need as a reader was that I needed my computer or someone to read to me so that I could understand the text more clearly. For example, this was very helpful to use when I was reading “Flowers for Algernon”. My area of need as a writer was to use software such as Google Read and Write to help me write things down. This helped me make a composition that was called “Future Leader”. My last area of need as an oral communicator was trying to feel more comfortable presenting in front of people. That week I did not feel very comfortable standing and presenting my poem analysis in front of the class.  This is something that I hope to get better at in the future.  


Week 7 Organization


The theme of week seven was organization. One of my tasks included organizing my binder, Gmail and Google Drive accounts as well as working on an Ethics project. My Ethics project was on who owns your content on Instagram.

A strength that I had this week was understanding the themes in “All American Boys”.  This was a book that we read this week about racial tensions in the United States. An example of a theme in “All American Boys” is the moral dilemma of should you make your life easier and protect yourself or should you do what you feel is right?

A skill that I had this week was easily organizing my binder, Gmail and Google Drive accounts. I find organizing very easy and I enjoy being organized. For example, in my Google Drive I have organized my folders by classes and within my class of 21st Century Literacy, I have organized all my files by the week that I had done a task. A strategy that I used was listening to an audiobook that helped me read “Flowers for Algernon” which I needed to read this week.

I think that I have grown a lot this week by learning more about ethics online. I learned about who owns your content online. I learned more about Instagram’s policy on whether they own your content or not. I learned that it is not just as simple as they own it or they do not own your content. Instagram does not own your content but you do give them the right to use your content when you use their services.

I had three areas of need that week. These areas were as a reader, writer and oral communicator. My area of need as a reader was getting someone to read me “All American Boys”. My area of need as a writer was using jot form to help me write faster instead of writing in full sentences. I used this in my ethics project. My area of need as an oral communicator was not being able to memorize what I was going to say for my ethics presentation. This is something that I am still working on.

In conclusion, I think that I have learned and grown a lot in most areas of my learning this term.  Thinking back over this term I think that my organization skills have helped in different ways such as finding assignments quickly if needed or using my calendar so that I know when assignments are due.  I also think that one of my areas of need, which is my presentation skills, affected me throughout this course and still affects me in other courses such as Drama class.  Overall I think that I had a very productive term and that I learned a lot.  

Photos


This was the "Flowers for Algernon" group discussion. (Evidence for "Flowers for Algernon" Skills and Areas of Needs as an Oral Communicator)


This is the Audiobook that I used to help me read "Flowers for Algernon". (Evidence for "Flowers for Algernon” Strategies and Areas of Need as a Reader. Also, Evidence for “Week 7 Organization” Strategies)


These are the first notes I took for “Flowers for Algernon”. These notes are about the first 50 pages of the book. (Evidence for "Flowers for Algernon” Strategies and Areas of Need as a Writer)


These notes are the last notes that I took for “Flowers for Algernon”. These notes are about the last 33 pages of the book. (Evidence for "Flowers for Algernon” Strategies and Areas of Need as a Writer)


These are my notes that I took from the movie Charly. (Evidence for "Flowers for Algernon” Areas of Need as a Media Interpreter)


This is a slideshow that Ben and I made for Week 6 of our learning. (Evidence for “Presentation Skills” Strengths)


This is a Kahoot quiz that I made. It went with a slideshow that I helped make about "What Not to Do in Slideshows". (Evidence for “Presentation Skills” Strengths)


This is Sasha and I practicing our slideshow for our poem analysis. (Evidence for “Presentation Skills” Skills)


These are my jot notes for the poem analysis that I was talking about in the photo above. (Evidence for “Presentation Skills” Strategies and Areas of Need as a Reader)


This is a slideshow that I made when I was running for Grade 9 Rep. for our school’s Student Council. (Evidence for “Presentation Skills” Growth)


This is Google Read and Write helping me type a blog post about why my school is so different than other high schools. (Evidence for “Presentation Skills” Areas of Need as a Writer and also Evidence for “Week 3 Technology/Poetry” Areas of Need as a Writer)


This is me presenting a slideshow about why I should be in Student Council. (Evidence for “Presentation Skills” Areas of Need as an Oral Communicator)


This is the poem analysis slideshow that I helped make. (Evidence for “Week 3 Technology/Poetry” Skills)


This is the blog that I have made. It is the one that you are reading right now. (Evidence for “Week 3 Technology/Poetry” Growth)


This is Shauna, my teacher, reading us a book. (Evidence for “Week 3 Technology/Poetry” Areas of Need as a Reader. Also, Evidence for “Week 7 Organization” Areas of Need as a Reader)


This is my Future Leader Composition. (Evidence for “Week 3 Technology/Poetry” Areas of Need as a Writer)


This is how I organize my Google Drive. I have all of my school files on the cloud so that they are very easily accessible to me from anywhere and any device. (Evidence for “Week 7 Organization” Skills)


This is how I organize my Google Drive within my class of 21st Century Literacy. (Evidence for “Week 7 Organization” Skills)


This is my Ethics slideshow. (Evidence for “Week 7 Organization” Growth)


This is a different slide on my Ethics slideshow. I wrote in jotform for this presentation to help me save time. Also, it is better not to have a lot of words on slideshows because it is boring for everyone in the audience. (Evidence for “Week 7 Organization” Areas of Need as a Writer)


Sources



Keyes, Daniel. Flowers for Algernon. New York: Harcourt, Brace & World, 1966. Print.



Reynolds, Jason, and Brendan Kiely. All American Boys. New York: Atheneum for Young Readers, 2015. Print.

Charly. Dir. Ralph Nelson. Prod. Ralph Nelson. By Stirling Silliphant. Perf. Cliff Robertson and Claire Bloom. Cinerama Releasing, 1967.



Tuesday, 15 November 2016

Design Sprint: How might we give people uncensored internet so they feel safe online?

On Wednesday, October 26th my class did a design sprint. A design sprint is when you try to solve a problem you really want to solve in a really short amount of time. A design sprint has many steps. The steps are empathy, define, ideate, prototype and test.

Empathy

Empathy is when you learn what you need to do for the people whose problem you are trying to solve. My problem was helping people use uncensored internet. So I needed to get empathy from people who use censored internet such as in China. It would have been great if I could have talked to someone in China but that was not possible this time. Instead, we split into groups of two and we interviewed each other trying to pretend we were the user for the other person. This part was really hard because I needed to pretend that I was faced with many difficult problems that I cannot relate to (such as not having access to clean water) when I was being interviewed.



Define

After the empathy stage, you must define your problem. My problem was “People in countries with censored internet need uncensored internet because they need to feel safe online.” A very easy way to  make your problem sound more positive is using how might we or HMW.  Now my problem became “How might we give people uncensored internet so they feel safe online?” I think that this stage is really good at making you think what the core of your problem is so it is easier to think of solutions.



Ideate

The next step is to ideate. This is when you start thinking about solutions to your problem. You do not want just to find one solution, you want to explore all the possibilities. One way of doing this is to use a solution called Crazy Eights. In Crazy Eights, you get 40 seconds to come up with a solution and then you must move on after the 40 seconds is up and come up with a new idea. You do this 8 times  so that hopefully by the end you have reached some ideas that you would not have if you just thought of one. I really liked the Crazy Eights.  I thought it was a great way to get more ideas out in a very fast amount of time.  After about the third or fourth idea, I started to find it very hard to keep coming up with ideas but when I was under pressure I found it was easier to just come up with ideas no matter what. After we were done with the Crazy Eights, I needed to refine my ideas with a partner. What you do is tell your partner everything that you have done so far but it is not like a normal conversation. You can only talk one at a time so you talk for about 60 seconds while  your partner just listens.  Then after that, you listen to your partner talk for 60 seconds. After that, you get one last chance to talk to your partner for 30 seconds and then your partner will come up with 4 more ideas for you. The same steps are used as in Crazy Eights but your partner only comes up with 4 ideas.  Then repeat vice versa. Then you pick your 1 best idea out of all of your and your partner's ideas. I really liked all parts of this stage.  I found it really helpful and it was really good to get input from somebody else.



Prototype

One of the last steps is a prototype. This is when your present your problem and solution(s) to other people. We did this by putting up the ideate sheet that has the problem and solution(s) on the wall and having people come to read them and put stickers next to what they like. After that, we had a silent critique where people came back with sticky notes and wrote down things that they liked. Some suggestions were what to include next time, other points that they wonder about and also whether they have some connection to the topic or have heard of it before. Then we had an out loud critique. This is where the person who wrote down their ideate including the problem and solution stand by it.  The person cannot talk and needs to just listen to the feedback from others.  After that, I made a new ideate sheet.  I found that this stage wasn’t the most helpful as I did not receive a lot of feedback from others and some comments left I did not fully understand.  


This is my final ideate sheet.




Test

The last step is to test our solutions but we never got to this step.

Source

Today, Usa. "Top 10 Internet-censored Countries." USA Today. Gannett, 05 Feb. 2014. Web. 14 Nov. 2016.




Thursday, 10 November 2016

Flowers for Algernon: progris riport 18

At school I read the novel Flowers for Algernon. One of the final projects for this book was to write from a character's point of view. I chose to continue from the main character's point of view.  His name is Charlie Gordon. Please note that he is not very smart so all the mistakes made when I was writing from his point of view are on purpose.

progris riport 18

nov 22 1966

I moved into Warren today. That man who showed me around did not want to see me at frist I think it is beucase I was here before and upset him but after he saw me he was happy to let me in and help me. My new room is small but ok I have a bed a desk and a closet. I was unpaking and thought I lost my new rabits foot but it was in my poket I really pulled a Charlie Gordon.  I share my room with someone named Richard Anderson. He is 38 years old and from New York City he was in a very bad acent and is now dumb like me. I have had a long day I am going to go to sleep now.

nov 23 1966

Here everyone wakes up at 8 and has brekfast at 9. We all eat the same thing eggs and juice. After that everyone goes to differnet class at the skool. I am in the basic reading and wrtting class. It is like Miss Kinnians class but it is not as nice becuase all of this was so easy a month ago. The class felt like it when on forver it was 2 hour untill 12. We had an hour for lucnh and then we go to do other class like arthmatic for 2 hours untill 3. Then we go to do some social actives. I talked to Richard for a bit. It is getting late. They toun the lights out at 10. I am going to go to bed now.

nov 29 1966

I have lived here for a week now. It is not as bad living here as I thought it would be. I do missing be smart thought. I remmeber being really smart and being albe to think so much that I could not writte it down fastenf and needed to use a typewriter. Now I can not writte as much and it takes a lot more time to writt and think. I do not know why I still writt down this progis riport anymore becase no one is going to read them. I need to go eat now.

dec 22 1966

I have been in Warren for a month now. Not much has happened since I last rote on nov 29. Richard has moved out he has gotten better from his acent. He rote me a letter last week saying that he is now working in New York City as a cashier and he is doing a lot better. I feel really lonly in here. It is all most Chismens and I have no one to be with. I wonder if  the doctors or Miss Kinnian think about me sometimes. I hope they do not feel bad for me I am happy that I was smart even just for a little. I wornder what what Fay is doing she probly still is dacneing a lot. I need to go to bed now.

jan 1 1967

At Warren they do not really chart Chismens. We all had a very big dinner and that was it. We have truky, masd potos and vegetabls. It was nice to have that for dinner. They cinda celebrat New Years tho. We had a party and were alod to stay up untill 1. We do not have classes today. I am relly tried because I stayed up late. I think that I am going to sleep a lot today. I am going to sleep now.

jan 3 1967

I leaft Warren for a day. Pepul outside of Warren do not like pepul that are dumb. It was hard to get servce. The pepul sayd to get out you idiot. So some nice lady went in and bought me food. Then I find a motel that lit me stay there. After that I decided to go back to Warren becuase in this world there is no place for dumb pepul.  I wonder what I am going to do for about 30 more years. I come back to Warren today. I am doing the same thing I do everyday now. I need to go have a shower before I go to bed.

jan 7 1967

I think that this will be my last progris riport because there is no point of me roting anymore. No one is going to read them and they are just getting really hard for me to rote. It also makes me to sad to rote in those now because it remans me of being smart and I have noting interesting to rote about now. Nothing has changed sents I have come back here after being in the city. So this is it goodbye progris riports.

Sources Cited

Keyes, Daniel. Flowers for Algernon. New York: Harcourt, Brace & World, 1966. Print.

"Social Security." Top Names of the 1960s. N.p., n.d. Web. 07 Nov. 2016.

Infoplease. Infoplease, n.d. Web. 07 Nov. 2016.

"Google." Google. N.p., n.d. Web. 07 Nov. 2016.

Quora, By. "Can You Ever Lose Intelligence?" - Quora. N.p., n.d. Web. 07 Nov. 2016.

"Life Expectancy in the USA, 1900-98." Life Expectancy in the USA, 1900-98. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 Nov. 2016.

Monday, 7 November 2016

Survey Results

I made a survey about who people think should be allowed to use/own your content on websites.

The questions that I had were:

Do you think that websites should be allowed to use/own your content?
Can you explain why you chose the answer in question one?
What websites do you post content on?
Do you know who can use/owns your content on the sites that you post on?
Do you think that it is important to know who owns your content?  Explain why you think that.
Do you think anything should be done about this?
If you said “yes” on the question above, can you explain what you think should be done?
Do you go to Cedar Ridge High School?


Here are three of the results from some of my most interesting questions.

The results to the question “Do you think that websites should be allowed to use/own your content?” are that many people are of the opinion that only sometimes websites should be allowed to use/own your content. A couple of people said that for advertisements it is okay or that they need to tell you in a better way and not in the confusing terms and conditions. Only one person said that “yes” they should be allowed to use/own your content. A few people said that “no” the websites should not be allowed to use/own your content.

The results to the question “Do you know who can use/owns your content on the sites that you post on?” are that the majority of people say “yes” they do know who can use their content on the sites that they use. Some people said that they know for some of the sites that they use and one  person said that they do not know who can use the content on the sites that they use.

Lastly, the results to the question “Do you think that it is important to know who owns your content?  Explain why you think that.” are that 9 people said that it is important that you know who can use your content for various reasons.  These reasons include it's good to know your rights, it might change what you upload and that is not ethical for anyone else to use their content. One person said that it doesn't really matter and another said that they do not care about it.

In conclusion, most of the results did not surprise but a couple did.   Almost everyone who responded to the survey goes to Cedar Ridge High School.  There was only one respondent who did not.   

A lot of people said that sometimes websites should be allowed to use your content.  This did not really surprise me but some of the reasons about when a website should be able to use your content did surprise me.  An example of this is when it was stated that your content should be able to be used for advertising.  I personally do not agree with that.  

The three most popular sites that respondents use are Instagram, Snapchat and Blogger.  This does not surprise me because most people I know use Instagram and Snapchat and students at Cedar Ridge all use Blogger as part of our schooling experience.  

A majority of the respondents replied that they know who can use their content on the websites they upload to.  I was a bit surprised that this many were aware because it took me awhile to learn about who can use your content. Almost all of my respondents said that it is important to know who can use your content online.  Just two people disagreed with it being important.  I was not very surprised at these results as I thought some people would feel it was important and others not.

Many people thought that we should do something about who can use your content online and many people suggested that companies tell you in more obvious ways how they want to use your content.  I agree with this suggestion.  I was not surprised that other respondents came up with this suggestion as well.


All in all, I received some really good and interesting information through this survey.  I was not surprised by most of it.  Now I know how people my age feel about websites being able to use content that they own.  Some issues that might be worth following up on are how companies can change how they handle this so that their users are happier and if possible governments need to step in to protect users by telling companies how to communicate issues with their users (such as easier language used and shorter so that everyone can read and understand the terms.)   

Here are my results for all of my questions.