Finishing the School Year

It June 2020! We are 6 months into 2020, 1/2 through the year. The last 6 month have been… eventful to say the least. Around the globe we have seen quite a few distinct events that will be some for the history books. In my last post I reflected on the Covid-19 situation and how it was effecting me back in March and April. Since then the situation has evolved, changes have been made (locally and globally), and we have continued living.

We have all, in some capacity, tuned in to the numbers.  Some believe is that only thing stopping us from bouncing back to a pre- pandemic world, the numbers of cases. Here are some numbers and dates I have personally been aware of:

  • It has been 102 days since I took notice of all of the changes, and 81 days since my last post
  • March 13th the last day of school before spring break , last time my friend and I went out together (Day 0)
  • March 14th the last day my family went out to a restaurant (Day 1)
  • June 4th the first day I went back to physical school (Day 83)
  • June 20th the first day my family when out to a restaurant again, and the graduation of the Class of 2020. (Congrats!)
  • June 27th the first day of official summer break

The working title of this post was “Returning to School amid a Pandemic”. I had planned on posting this as a reflection on returning to school, but I only attended one of three possible days, and it was quite uneventful. Aside from heavy social distancing and cleaning procedures, it was very quite and I was exceptionally productive. (I don’t know what that says about my self-motivation.)

With classes officially finished for the 2019-2020 school year, I missed my chance to post about going back to school. Instead, I am taking the opportunity to appreciate all of the effort that everyone has put in to make the last few months work in spite of all the challenges. It’s also a time to congratulate every one for making it through the year, and sending well wishes for a safe, healthy and restful summer.

School during the Pandemic

We a truly living in a crazy time. We are learning and making mistakes. We are living through a historical event. This is the new normal. This too shall pass. School is cancelled? Everything is shut down. This is just what we need to slow down and remind us what is really important. Our hero front line workers. An economic recession. An environmental break. Wild life is coming back. The skies are so clear. Mother Nature is showing us who is boss. I wonder how it’ll be when this is all said and done. 

It is April 2020! It feels like January, February and March flew by. The jumble of thoughts in italics are things I have heard and ideas that have been in circulation during the past few weeks. It is now April, and though the events shaping the world today started over three months ago, it didn’t really hit home until about 3 weeks ago. I am in no way a credible source amid this pandemic, but I am sharing my thoughts and experiences in this post because it will undoubtedly impact my high school years. (For which this blog was created to be a record.)

At the beginning of 2020, there was news coverage about a deadly virus outbreak in China. Like many global issues or news stories, I ignored it. Things are difficult to put into perspective when you have no interest in it and think you are frankly “to busy to care”. Eventually, the news grew and people began to worry.  Began to take more precautions for their own health and safety. The situation escalated in other parts of the world, such as Iran and Italy. Blame, conspiracy, fear, false news, and ignorance spread, along with the virus. Professionals talked of “flattening the curve” as to not overwhelm the health care system. This brings us to what was supposed to be the beginning of Spring Break. We believed it would be a time to self-isolate, but not the beginning of a radically changed way of life. Things started to close, and people were urged to social distance. Steps were becoming more drastic, and necessary. Many, many, many new rules, regulations and protocols where but into place. Including, on March 17th, the indefinite suspension of school classes. This now directly effects me! Before, I had been abiding by the provinces advice, but not panicking. The panic was brief and has since subsided. Everyone had adapted their routines and is awaiting more information.

That bring us to today. We would have officially gone back to classes this past Monday. Instead, we are all home. Using electronics over 40% more, on average. Everyone is scrambling to make new innovative changes to work around Physical Distancing.  I am very grateful to all the people working so hard to keep people safe and provide for others. Everyone who is working to help I extend my heart-felt thanks.

As for me, I am being contacted by teachers, friends, classmates, and people from just about every aspect of my life.  I am living life as usual… the new usual. The italics ideals are all still swirling around me. What does this mean for everyone? There are many unanswered questions. We won’t really know until later. Because even though it it is year two thousand twenty, only hindsight is 2020. We’ll all have to wait and see. And I hope to write a few more posts specifically about Learning and School in these circumstances.

Math and Core Competencies

Core Competencies are the things one uses to develop their knowledge, skills, and connections with others. I  can identify where I have used the competencies of critical and creative thinking, personal, social responsibility and communication, in all of my subject areas. They extended to all of my different subjects and also outside things.

In Math, there is also the use of core competencies. In my project about linear graphing, I worked in a group and presented on the skills our linear graphing and our model. The competency we used most was critical thinking, to learn the skills surrounding linear equations. Next, we used communication. Since we had a long time line, and the winter break we needed to communicate, and use personal social responsibility to manage our time, and complete each of our parts with high quality. Our model had to do with world population trends and how the finite number of earth’s resources, can lead to the extinction of humans. We could have been more creative in developing the model and thinkin gof outher factors of population. I could have reflected on and refined the model, perhaps we wouldn’t get a linear model, we could present and incorporate elements of linear graphing. Overall, the all core competencies were used in the project, but I can work to develope my skills in some areas. Using more creative thinking and reflection in future real-world modeling in mathematics.

Carrom

Today in Math class we were introduced to the game Carrom. Carrom is a cue-based game originally from India. It is similar to pool, where the object is to pocket the objects (balls or carrom-men) by striking a cue and using angles to hit it in.

The game includes a striker, a chip interned to by flicked by a player using their fingers, carrom-men and smaller chips meant to be hit into the corner pockets, the board, the queen, the last chip to be pocketed and it is worth more points, and two teams of players. Rules and styles of play vary depending on region, and number of players. some games are similar to pool, where as some are point based games. the game is often played as a social event and is popular among children and in tournament style.

In learning about Carrom, I can identify some Core Competencies that may be demonstrated in the game. Communication is big because you need to talk to team mates to make strategies. Critical Thinking can also be important when finding inscribed angles to hit the striker and pocket a chip.  Personal, Social and Cultural Awareness is incorporated because Carrom in a social game which is played in many different countries and has many variants and different rules and styles.

Carrom seems like a very fun game and I look forward to learning and hopefully playing with friends.

Reflection on Learning

Today in Math, we were introduced to a PADS dog that will be our school’s ‘facility dog’, which our principal explained is a dog trained to be a companion to anxious students and to brighten the days of everyone in the hallways. A PADS dog would be good to assist students, relieve stress and overall let people smile. It will be nice to have a furry friend at school who is available to all students and faculty.

Also, our teacher told us about the movie Super 30. A movie about a class of working class students who all worked extremely hard to get into the top univeristy in the country. It reminder me of my obligations to learn and get an education, something many people still don’t have. I must strive to learn and grow as much as I can in school to establish a career and better myself and the people in my life. It is my job right now and I must work hard and learn for myself and my future.

Social Media and Me

This Info Graphic was created to display the connection I made when considering the following materials.

https://medium.com/s/story/the-confusion-is-the-point-6ab1d5a933aa

http://bit.ly/2unykti

http://bit.ly/2BiCyYh

http://tinyurl.com/y7y9b3zg

Digital Literacy Reflection: I chose to create an info graphic because I think it was the best way to answer the questions and show my connections to the materials, without making a long wordy essay. Plus, I was able to improve my skills while using the platform Visme. I was able to upload and insert my info graphic with no difficulties. The info graphic includes text explaining my understanding of each article and video. I included icons and pictures to display my ideas in a visual way.

Critical Thinking Core Competency Reflection: While reading and watching the provided content, I considered the context of each message. Ironically, the first article is about the constant need for context and how social media makes finding context a daunting task. I searched the news incident that was referenced in the article, and watched multiple videos about Nose Dive, to gain clarity. I considered the sources themselves to determine if things were reliable fact or intentional fiction. I considered the information from my perspective and then from the perspective of the author of the article, Ted X presenter and main character of each respective source.

 

A Meaningful Quote

“One day I will find the right words, and they will be simple.” 

Jack Kerouac

I came across this quote very recently, and I love it because I think it encompasses what I’m trying to do, in a philosophical sense. Figuring out what I want to do and how I want to do it. That it’s not important to do something extravagant and incredible, but something that is good and right. Which in most cases, is simple.

Jack Kerouac was a prominent person in the Beat Generation, a social movement in the Late ’50’s and early ’60’s, who was a writer and poet. This quote is one of my favourite quotes, though I have many. But it is my favourite by Jack Kerouac. He was wrote many novels and poetry books. He was considered a “beatnik”, one who questioned conventional ideals. He contradicted those ideals through his art.

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An Image with Impact

Without context, this picture may seem ridiculous. With context, it may still seem ridiculous. This image isn’t deep and full of mind-blowing thoughts, but I like it because it’s fun. and I think that has quite an impact.

This is a picture from a scene in The Karate Kid Part II. As one of the opening scenes, it takes place immediately after the events of the first film. Master Miagi is ready to hit the main antagonist from the first film. The antagonist hurt one of his students, after he had lost to Miagi’s student (Daniel-San). Miagi had the capability to hurt this man, and it seemed that he would, until the last second, where he honks his nose, and walks off.

I think this image has a lot of impact for those who know the context of it. I like it because it is one of my favourite movie scenes and every time I see it, I love it more and more. Anyone who knows was happens after this frame understands how compassionate, funny and impressive Miagi is as a character.

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An Cool Clip

This is a YouTube clip of Peter Bence playing the song Africa by Toto on the piano. When I came across this video, I was awestruck by the passion and talent that one can have. Aside from it been a popular song, the cover is so creative and skillful that I think anyone can appreciate it. It speaks for itself.