In Depth Blog Post #1 Let’s Rock

The in-depth project has finally started, I am looking forward to it as I can finally study about something that I am passionate  about. To be honest, when the project was announced, I had no idea what to do because the project was just too broad to me. I started listing ideas that would be possible and crossing the ones that would be hard for me to do. I finally made my choice between classical music and graphic design and the final decision is…. (drum roles)… Graphic design!

Study about graphic design isn’t an easy thing because I don’t have much experiences with this area. This year i am going to focus on graphic design, and mainly graphic designing in Photoshop cc and also take my own professional-looking photographs. I choose this topic because I am interested in many forms of graphic arts and also simply designing stuff. I want to show people how Photoshop isn’t just a tool of cropping faces and making funny pictures. Photoshop is in fact a very popular tool for a graphic designer. Of course there are different other tools, Photoshop cc is indeed the most popular one.

This year, I am mainly going to focus on learning the DETAILS usages in Photoshop cc and also create my own graphic arts with it. I know it is going to be a tedious process but I am challenging myself to do the best out of it. Then, I will learn and shoot photos by myself, because I don’t want to keep copying other people’s photos online. Therefore, I can actually become a legit graphic artist and create my very original pictures. I think the hardest part here is to generate ideas, it is very important to have the resources, but ideas are something that just pop out. Sometimes, I can look online for inspirations and also I can also my mentor for opinions on my arts.

Learning graphic designing is very different compared to drawing because in here, everything is basically done in a computer. I grab images from either online or from my own resources and turn them into meaningful and aesthetic images. A good new is that I have already secured a mentor, she is the graphic designing teacher in our school. Ms.Gilder specialize graphic designing, but mainly photography and I have seen some of her works and I was totally SHOCKED. She is going to meet me weekly and teach me to use Photoshop programs and also take photos with my limited materials.

DOL #4

Q: Provide a copy/image of your research notes. What concepts in your learning do you now feel you have a solid grasp on? Which ones might be useful to other students?

Here is the link to the google doc that contains my notes for my Zip project:

My topic is about the symbolism in the short stories and I’ve focused on two short stories that we’ve read in the past few months. Barney and The Veldt. I now have a solid knowledge about how the symbolism makes a difference in the short stories. Not only does it make the story more interesting to read, it reflects the story to a deeper, real world problem. Taking the symbolism in the Veldt as an example, it is reflecting how technology is gradually taking over the society. Symbolism is what makes a story contains levels, as the first level being the content reader first time sees and comprehends. Symbols are what give readers space to ponder, it makes the story deeper and can also add richness to the plot, making it more appealing. I think these facts are very valuable for other students in the future because it clearly shows how symbolism enhances a story. Symbolism is the art inside an art gallery, it provides color and creates an environment for people to think about the story even after reading it.

DOL #3

Question:knowing what you know now, what advice would you give yourself at the start of your inquiry?

With the knowledge that I now acquire, I feel like that I need to pay more attention to my calendar. The information are thorough and I am happy how it turned out, but I still need more efforts in completing my presentation. First of all, i needed to narrow my topic quickly in order to start to research in time. In my case, I struggled on my question as it is a bit too vague. After, I finally focused on the symbolism in short stories and I’ve finally made some progress. Secondly, the research process should be done more efficiently. I needed to pay attention to the websites that I am using and how helpful they are. Lastly, I want to advise myself that it is important to think about the presentation at the beginning because I still need to work on my presentation even though I’ve acquired a lot of data. It will be much easier if I already know how I am going to present.




DOL #2

What is a specific source of information that you have found valuable in answering your inquiry question? How has it proved valuable? Explain.

As I am narrowing my topic to short stories, I am beginning to find more detailed websites about symbolism in real life and also in specific short story, like “The Veldt”. I find a useful website specifically illustrates the symbolism in the short story “The Veldt” and how the author is trying to relate the story to the real life.  For instance, the nursery may symbolism technology as it is gradually taking over the world. I have also find a article describing the symbolism hidden in the short story “Barney”. I find it interesting of how Barney is related as a human in the article. I choose to focus on the short stories we’ve read because everyone will know the plot. Plus, to show how the symbolism makes a difference in the story, I need to have a story that we are all familiar with. Beside the websites, I am also e-mailing some authors to gain some more information about the use of symbolism.

Critical Responce to Barney: Will Stanton


Zip Week #1

During my ZIP research project, I have encountered some ups and downs, as my topic is a little vague and easy to answer. My question at first is “how do the use of symbolism enhance novels”. But after I decided to change it because there is not an appropriate way to actually show my learning. Now, my question is “what makes something symbolic”, this is a more likely reasonable and I can show my work by describing the symbolism in the short story we’ve read. At first, I am frustrated about how to narrow my topic so it will be capable to search because showing symbolism in books people have not read isn’t really a good idea. Despite of the downs, I also have made a good progress researching about symbolism in literature. I find that it can appear in many forms as metaphor or allegory. During my research, I am also becoming interested in Shakespeare’s work as it pops up quite often.

Main sources:

Significant conflict Novel Study

In Sherman Alexie’s The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, Junior’s most significant conflict is how he struggles between two identities because he is an Indian who leaves his reservation, to a school full of rich white kids. His parents agree with his decision, but other people, however, react differently. This book portraits how Junior struggles to join but eventually achieve his goal and finds hope in Rearden, a school full of rich white kids. Junior, however, is being judged due to his race when he first joins Rearden, as “the kids couldn’t believe their eyes. They stared at [him] like [he] was Bigfoot or a UFO” (56).  Junior has some trouble to fit in at first, but he soon gains his position at Rearden as he dates Penelope, the most popular white girl and befriends Gordy, the school’s resident genius. He also punches the school jock, Roger, in the face and wins his respect. At this point, Junior becomes a part-time Indian as half of his personality is surrounded by the white people, but half is still an Indian. Junior becomes aware that he starts to value himself surrounded by white people over his ethnic personality. He describes himself being an Indian as “only a part-time job. And it didn’t pay well at all” because in the other hand, people from the reservation treats him like a traitor (118) And that, includes his very best friend, Rowdy. He shows his anger towards Junior in a basketball game “as Rowdy smashed his elbow into [Junior’s] head and knocked [him] unconscious” (146). It is hard for Junior to rebuild his friendship because of how people from rez make assumptions that Junior betrays them and leaves for Rearden when the real purpose of Junior is to find hope. This conflict is significance as it applies throughout the novel, even in the title.



REAL success reflection

Over the past week, I have learnt many excellent tips about How To Be A REAL Success. All the tips were essentials for being a good leader. There are a few that I found to be very useful that I never considered before. The relationship would be an important one, which was love and accept myself, I never really thought about myself as I mainly put attention on other people. I learnt that the only relationship in my life that is continual and therefore is the most important, is to myself. Relationships with others are also important because one will generally have a better reputation if one gets along with people well. I learnt that adding value to the people around me could help them to reach their full potentials. Secondly, I learnt that the attitude also was very important in term of being successful. For example, when I faced a problem, I commonly get stressed out and then tried to find my way out. I now learnt that since the attitude is a choice for oneself, it was definitely important to have a positive attitude at first. This will increase the efficiency of solving a problem because I could calm down to think about it carefully if I got my attitude in control the first place. Finally, Equipping, which was something I’ve never thought about before the video. I learnt how everyone had a habit to finish something individually, and that was something that stopped people from equipping each other. People failed to equip others due to underestimating others, intending to do the task themselves, or wanting to take control of everything. This reminded me of how I was lost in a problem and not asking for help. And now I learnt that one is always weaker then a group, it is always better to equip others.


Symbolism, it may sound familiar to you, but think like this, why do authors use symbolism? Why would you symbolize something with another idea or object? Authors use symbolism to emphasize the themes of the books. And that brings to my question: how do authors use symbolism to enhance a novel?

In this inquiry project, I would like to look at the symbolism authors use in their books. I would mainly focus on a few books, however, because or else the question will be too broad to research about. Personally, while reading a novel, sometimes I stop to think about a deeper meaning of the book. Symbolism is something that leaves me to think, it is something that will teach me an important life lesson, it is something that emphasizes the tones of the novel, bringing me into the plot. I was especially motivated after reading one of my favorite book, The Little Prince. I was shocked because of how the author uses symbolism to illustrate a bigger picture between the lines. The book was short, but it was indeed powerful. That was when I realize the importance of symbolism, and that is exactly why I am choosing this as my inquiry topic. I am excited to discuss about the symbolism that I found meaningful in the novel. In my opinion, symbolism is what makes a story even better.

Symbolism is basically using words to present an abstract idea, for instance, the fire may symbolise danger, a child may symbolise the innocence.

Currently, symbolism is still a general idea to me and I need to do some close reading in order to understand the symbolism in the novels. I will need my comprehension to understand the books. I also need the internet as a resource which will guide me through the project. I would really like to expand my reading comprehension skill because most of the times, I skim through pages but never slow down to understand the meanings between the lines. I can also investigate on the books that I’ve already read closely and therefore understand the symbolic themes.

In order to approach my research, internet is indeed a big help, I need to research about how symbolism makes a novel better. And how a novel will lose its meaning without symbolism. I need the library to grab the book that I find interesting, or the ones that I hope I can read more closely.

In the end, I hope to make a poster with different symbolism that appears in a few novels. That way, I can explain the importance of symbolism to an author’s literature idea. In order to highlight my work, I will focus on two or three novels in order to show the general main idea and make comparisons.


Week 1 Finish the weekly blog post and expand on the topic, finish basic research
Week 2 Find useful sites and start in-depth research (about specific books), grab books from library
Week 3 Start the poster, gathering information about the novel and relate to the topic of enhancement.
Week 4 Finishing researching and choose useful notes to put on the poster and to talk about, finalizing notes
Week 5 Finalize the poster and gathering info from the book, be ready to present

NOTN Assessment

Roughly 70 hours, I spent my time working on my learning center. Iimg_2822 was just fascinated by the grade 10’s learning centers last year and this year, I planed to put everything into my project. I still remembered the frustrating moment when I was staring at my computer and had no idea of what to do for my learning center. I still remember those times when my glue gun burnt my finger, leaving dots if red marks. Enough complaining, it was definitely all worth it.

Heavily influenced by Lucas’s work last year, I tried everything in order to attract people and have conversations. I framed every single picture because I wanted people to feel theimg_2821 environment. Looking back, I was indeed happy about my work, I tried to include all the senses, touch, smell, taste, sight and hearing. Therefore, I considered my learning center as successful but still had room for improvements.

On the other hand, I need to give special thanks for the ones who replied my interview questions. I got on from the international Chopin Society, which I thought was really cool because the Society was located in Poland. They offered me helpful links and also directed me to more professors who knew much more about Frederic Chopin. I also got replies from the Vancouver Chopin Society, and the person who emailed me was super enthusiastic as she chatted with me via email, which was also SUPER COOL. I didn’t think I was going to get a reply at all, but I tried, and I did! Those people were immensely helpful as I gained much more information about Chopin besides the internet and books, mainly on his musical styles.

After the night, I felt relished because I could finally add few more hours to my sleeping schedule. Besides that, I was really proud of my work and how it turned how at the night. First, I achieved my goal of having one or more interviews which were awesome. Secondly,img_2824Iwas proud of how I could have different conversations with the people who came to visit my learning center. Despite my nervousness, I managed to chatwith them about my eminent person, and also my passion. It was a total different experience for me as I never had a chance to talk to so many adults. But I had to admit, it was extremely fun to talk to someone who had the same passion as you. There were a few people who I thought I could spend a whole afternoon with to talk about Frederic Chopin. Beside that, i was happy of how the music attracted people to come. I think music was necessary for people to truly understand a pianist. I also had a poster i made with pictures of Chopin that I put on top of the locker. Here, i had to thank Lucas once more because I was inspired by his idea of putting a poster on the locker. Plus, i could put the speaker behind the poster so it wouldn’t seem so out of place. I was also happy about my idea of dumping the piano sheetsimg_2828 into coffee for it to look old and it also had a coffee smell to it. I also brought the full collections of Chopin’s nocturnes and polonaises. I also made a map about the places different Chopin interpreters were born in and a tri-fold for images and names of the interpreters. Besides, I also brought props from my house to make the scene more realistic. Overall, it turned out well because there could still be ways for improvements.

Despite the success, I also had many points to change. First, I think I could make my pictures in frames a lot bigger because sometimes people had to lean in order to see it clearly. And that brought me to my secondimg_2827 point, the lighting. I don’t expect the environment to be that so I used my phone as a flashlight, but it wasn’t really significant. Next time, I think I will bring some lightings like flashlights or lamps. After that, I needed to use my time more efficiently because compared to the grade 10s, mine was still not as aesthetically organized. One thing is that my mom was back in China, so she couldn’t bring my bigger materials to school. Lastly, just to add up, I would have more desks and have them placed more outwards. That way, people wouldn’t have to walk all the way into the locker bay and sometimes, people would just walk past because it was hard to see.

The thing I remembered the most was probably the moment when people started to come to visit my learning center. There were some people who taught piano and we had some really interesting conversations. There was a lady who actually went to the Chopin museum at Warsaw, Poland. It was impressive to see someone wimg_2834ho actually studied Frederic Chopin. I was awfully nervous at first but it all came together when the conversations begun. I was impressed of how many people had visited my learning center which made me extra proud. Another thing I remembered was the group photo because, to me, it was a great moment to see everyone’s smiles after such a long project. That moment was special, it was joyful, it was pure happiness



Document of learning

My topic is:  What three things do you hope your audience will come away knowing about your Eminentperson? How will you show this to them?

It was finally done, after weeks of researching, reading, interviewing, we finished the incredible Eminent Project. Personally, those nights in front of books and piles of paper were worth it when I saw the people walking into my learning center. The hard work eventually paid off, and I was impressed by myself because of howstressful I was in the beginning. And plus, I was finally able to get some sleep!

To be honest with you, I had a great time during the project, I chose someone I admired. I chose someone I was interested in, not just someone that I already learned a lot from. I was able to grab a ton of information about Frederic Chopin, however, because he really had made a dent in the music history. He was born in 1810, and that is why I made my learning center old and dusty. I tried to put as much effort as I could into my learning center to attract people’s attention and to give them as much information as I could in a limited amount of time.

I was extremely nervous and scared at the Night Of The Notables because of the people I saw swarming in the building. But it turned out to be fine as I had many interesting conversations with many music enthusiasts and even professors. I tried to focus on the main point and reduce the writing to a minimal amount. And here are three main points I hope the audience would take away after looking at my learning center.img_2822

First one is the one I focused the most on, that is the style of Chopin’s music. That was the main reason why I chose my eminent person because his style was simply incredible and pleasing. Unlike other composers like Mozart or Beethoven, Chopin mainly focused on piano. He only wrote two duet pieces for piano and viola, which still had piano as the melody. Chopin only cared about piano because of the fluency which differs from the orchestra. The beauty of Chopin’s music was about the rareness and his uniqueness, it was rather miraculous. People described him as “the only one and towering high above in his own, closed domain.” I admired Chopin’s work because of his brilliant piano technique as from the sound language itself, his unique harmony. I wanted people to know the music style by simply listening to his music, therefore, I brought a speaker and played his music in the background, it was mainly his Prelude in E minor and his Fantasie-Impromptu in C-sharp minor because those two were my favorite musical compositions. Indeed, there is a true gap between the harmonic sound of music by Beethoven and Schubert and that of music by Chopin. Chopin’s chords do not only represent a system of tonal tensions and ideas to accompany the melody but delight one with their individually colored sounds. Anyone would be touched by Chopin’s chord progression because of its pleasing sounds and harmony. I wanted people to know why is Chopin different and why he had become a star that shined among other composers in term of his incredible music style. Overall, his coms=positions feature dissonance which is velvety soft and pleasant to the ear, I simply love playing his pieces.

I didn’t choose Chopin only because of his music style, I chose him because of how he managed to compose hundreds of legendary pieces despite his illness. Chopin’s perseverance is another main reason that made me admire him. I learned that when Chopin was young, he was in love with butter cookies but after he had been sick, he showed intolerance to fatty foods, especially pork-these caused stomach aches, diarrhea, and weight loss. I showed the asimg_2961pect by bringing cookies, as he could eat butter cookies due to his sickness. Later he endeavored to avoid such symptoms with diet; he obtained substantial improvement with ingredients such as honey and oat bran. Chopin attained a height of 170 centimetres but weighed 100 pounds. This is a fact that people didn’t know about, I printed it to show as an interesting but scary fact about the famous composer. Also, Chopin is known to have had no facial hair at the age of 22, and I also printed it as a fact because many people are already familiar with Chopin as a musician, but not about his health. My goal for my learning center is to let people walk away with facts they never knew before, and that’s why I focused on his health.

Lastly, I wanted people to know about his interpreters who passed down his music compositions into the history forever. In the years since Chopin died perceptions of him have, of course, changed, as they do of all great composers, but here is a singular fact: his popularity has never waned. There were many interpreters who were great musiciansimg_2825 who got influenced and interpreted his music pieces. My favorite would be Carl Tausig, the outstanding pupil of Liszt who was probably the first pianist to give all-Chopin recitals. His revision of the E Minor Piano Concerto includes re-orchestration and a wholesale rewriting of the solo part. Besides, there are many interpreters intended to change or vary Chopin’s work to the style they preferred, and personally, I liked it as long as the style was kept, and only minor changes were done. I wanted people to know how Chopin had affected the music world as there were hundreds of famous Chopin interpreters around the world. Therefore, I also made a map that labeled out the places famous Chopin interpreters were born in. That way, it would be clearer for people to understand it in a visual way.