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This interim, I got to go to Chicago. The trip was fun and I got to see a lot of cool things around the city but getting there was not so easy. At the beginning of our trip, we barely missed our flight and ended up having to wait at the airport for hours. Then we all went on a flight the Charlotte, NC and had some more waiting to do. Finally, we got on the flight to Chicago and landed at 5 pm. The first thing we did was go up to the top of the Sears tower which was once the tallest building in the world. There was a glass box that jutted out from the building where you could look out and see the whole city. It was beautiful with all the lights making the city twinkle in the dark.

Throughout the trip, I got to see a lot of different kinds of art. We to the Chicago Art Institute and some of the more traditional art, we saw a performance from the Chicago Symphony,  we saw the musical Love Never Dies, and went on an architecture tower around the city to see the thought behind the buildings around Chicago and some of the public art like The Bean. Along with seeing lot’s of different kinds of art in Chicago, we also saw the culture and history of the city. I learned that there was a fire that burned down most of the city in the 1800s, and the whole city had to be rebuilt. The city is better designed because of this and is structured in a grid system. However, Chicago is a segregated city, with different cultures living in certain regions. You could be driving through Chinatown seeing a lot of seeing a lot of signs in Chinese or other Asian languages, and then you might find yourself in Greektown which looks very different. There are so many different cultures throughout Chicago. As well as learning about the cultures and the arts in Chicago, we also got to see some science museums. In the main science museum, there was a huge WW2 submarine that you could go inside and do a tour of, and a genetics part of the museum where they hatched baby chicks. A field museum we went to was a lot like the Fernbank Museum here in Atlanta, but a lot bigger.

With saying all this, you can’t talk about the trip without talking about the food. I knew about Chicago style pizza and hotdogs before going on the trip, but I did not know that beef sandwiches were such a big deal there. I got to try one and let me just say, it was so good. Yes, I did try the pizza too which was also awesome. On the coldest day, I had Ben and Jerry’s ice cream before going on a Ferris wheel and had beignets with Nutella dip before seeing the Second City improv show. I even got to try a red velvet donut with some cream cheese icing in the middle.

Overall this trip was awesome. The little bump in the road at the beginning did not stop me having fun. I got to learn some of the culture and history of Chicago, see amazing art on stage and on canvas, try new foods, and get to make new connections with people on the trip. I will definitely remember this interim week.



How was 2017?

2017 was a year of change for me with so many new things happening. I got to be a part of some cool projects as well as reach some life milestones along the way. What exactly happened in 2017?

This was a year. I finished my freshman year of high school and also got my driver’s license, two big milestones. I started posting my art online more often and some of my art and animations got noticed by some creators I look up to.  At the beginning of my sophomore year, I was a part of Magic Paintbrush, a school play that involved music and puppetry, and we toured it to other schools close by. I went to DragonCon with my friends and saw Imagine Dragons in concert. made new friends and said hi to old ones.  I played games, watched movies and videos, sang and danced, laughed, cried, and gave hugs.

Lots of new things happened, new exciting things. New stories, new jokes, new skills, and new experiences. This past year was a pretty positive one for me, and I can’t wait to see what 2018 has in store. I’ll have to see what comes soon since it’s only February.


Outside School

Spring Break: Off to NYC

Over spring break I got to go to New York City with family and friends. It was the first time I’ve ever been and I got to do a ton of stuff. I went through Times Square, saw three plays, ate great food, went to the crown in the Statue of Liberty, walked a lot, went shopping, and talked with friends and family. The part that I was most excited about before we got there was seeing Hamilton, and I was so happy that I got to see it! I also got to see Kinky Boots and Aladdin, and for Hamilton and Kinky Boots, I got my playbills signed by some of the actors which were awesome!

During the week we also went to historical sites like The Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island, Trinity Church, and the 911 Museum. Going up the Statue of Liberty was actually a little scary because to get up to the crown you had to go up these steep and tight spiral stairs, and it was even harder to get back down. The view from the top was gorgeous, though. Everyone also went on a mafia tour around the city and afterward went to this Italian restaurant with super good pasta and a dessert place next door with cannolis. We did eat a lot of Italian that week. There were some cool shops around Times Square too, so we went to check them out. There was a Hersheys Store, M & Ms, and Disney.

After a fun week sightseeing around New York City, it was time to go home. I waved goodbye to the bustling city as the plane took off and I headed back to Atlanta.




3-Day Startup

This past weekend I got to go to an amazing experience called 3-day startup. From Thursday to Saturday I worked with people in IDiploma to learn how to start a business. During the three days, I brainstormed ideas with others, voted on them, got into groups, pitched our idea multiple times, and got help from mentors who had experience as entrepreneurs.

The group that I was in did something called Fashion Box. Fashion would be a monthly subscription box of clothing, sorta like Stitch Fix. The difference is that when you sign up you get a box, and you do a spring cleaning of your closet. Then you send the clothes you never wear back to the company. After that, you’d get a box of clothes, like a mini wardrobe, that you could wear for a month, and send it back at the end of the month. We’d use a mix of clothes that we buy from fashion companies and the sent in clothes from our subscribers. When the clothes got worn a certain amount of times they would be donated to people in need. Our group was a mix of freshman (Skyler, Caroline, and I) and juniors (Maxine and Colton) so it was cool to

Our group was a mix of freshman (Skyler, Caroline, and I) and juniors (Maxine and Colton) so it was cool to be able to work with others outside of our grade. The best part of this experience for me was getting outside feedback with mentors, interviews, and pitches. On Saturday, everyone got to go out into the community and interview some people about things that pertained to our business. It was cool to hear what people said and how they reacted to certain questions. Also the same day, everyone got to talk to mentors who had had experience in business or entrepreneurship. After this, we took all the feedback and used it to help make pitches. We did an intermediate pitch on Saturday first, which was a bit rough and stressful because it was everyone’s first one, and a final pitch on Sunday. The pitch on Sunday was in front of all the students, parents, and a panel of entrepreneurs.

After having this experience I have discovered the value of feedback and having multiple times to try something so if you mess up you can learn from it and try again. You might have to change your idea multiple times to get it right, and feedback helps you do that. Even now I don’t think my group’s idea is perfect, but if we ended up working on it further in the future, maybe we could change things and make it work. This was a very valuable experience to me and I’m very happy that I got to go through and see how to almost start up a business.


Interim Reflection

During interim I got to experience many things throughout the week including making pasta, visiting the aquarium, practicing acting and audition skills, and going on a movie tour around Atlanta. Each one of these had a small impact on me that helped me learn something new. Making pasta ended up being a little more difficult and messy than I first thought. Making the dough was hard to do without getting egg and flour all over your hands, but in the end it was fun to work as a team to make something delicious. Everyone in the team had a role they played for different tasks, and we all collaborated to make the food. Next I went to Act3 and got to practice acting. The group for this was pretty small so it was a great experience to learn and have fun. We played improv games, did a practice audition, and shared theater stories with each other. I have liked acting already so getting to have this experience made me like the hobby even more. At the end of the day we self choreographed a dance together and did a little musical theater number with mics and everything. Getting this experience helped me practice my hobby and get to know friends who like the same things. The next day I went to the aquarium and on a behind the scenes tour learned about jobs that are needed to run the place. Almost anyone could work there because so much was needed to keep things going. Scientists, trainers, planners, engineers, doctors, even artists could help out and work at the aquarium. Maybe in the future I could work there? Who knows. My next activity was going on a movie tour around Atlanta, and I really liked it. Seeing the places around Atlanta that things like Hunger Games or The Walking Dead were filmed really helped me see Atlanta in a new light. A lot more movies and tv shows were filmed here than I had realized. Also I learned that it’s not that hard to get a job on a movie set, especially if you want to become an extra. I could do something with that in the future. On the last day of interim I did some service by going to a place where they make packages for moms who can’t afford supplies for their children. I was completely unaware of this issue before I came to help sort and package things, so this really helped open my eyes to something that is a problem in the community.

Out of all of these experiences I learned how to work with others better, the culture around Atlanta involving tv shows, movies, and the aquarium, the jobs that were involved with movies and the aquarium that I could maybe try in the future, and the issue that is caring for a child when you don’t have a lot of money. I learned about Atlanta as a community and also about other students while working in groups to accomplish things.  Collaborating with others was involved in almost every adventure I took on, and I’m glad that I got to practice being a collaborator this week. All in all I felt like the week was a great learning experience for me, and I got to try a lot of new things and even do things that I already love like acting. I went from a chef, team mate, actor, learner, movie fan, and service volunteer all in one week, and each role brought with it a new perspective to see. The week was a great time to explore and see things that I usually don’t get to explore in my everyday life, and I’m glad I had all these experiences.


Alien DNA Lab

In my biology class recently we have been learning about DNA. To learn more about this, the class did a lab where we were all given different sheets with DNA sequences on them coding for different proteins. Each little DNA sequence on the sheet would code for different traits like a long nose, hair, amount of arms or legs, and even the color. After you figured out what your proteins were, you could find the traits that matched and start drawing your alien. I decided to make mine kinda cute! This activity was a lot of fun and helped me learn how about how DNA translates into RNA and proteins.


Math Project

For math class, I got to do a project on triangles and art. While learning about trigonometry and special triangles, the geometry class I’m in did a fun project by making art out of different triangles. Each person had to research a type of art and make something with triangles around that art genre. I decided to do surrealism and made a mirror image of a drawing with shapes. I’m pretty proud of how the drawing turned out, but on some parts of the project I left out some parts from the rubric that were pretty important, and my grade ended up being lower than I thought it would. If I had the chance to do this project again I would go back and check to make sure that I included everything that needed to be included.





Humanities Proposal

Recently in my Humanities class, which is a mix of English and History class, we did a research proposal about a problem in the community. I decided to research and write about sidewalks around the Sandy Springs and Atlanta area and how to fix them. This is because a lot of the time, the sidewalks are cracked or drop off at one point and pick up later down the road. During the process of researching I actually figured out that some others were already working to solve this problem, so I added my own spin on it. Instead of just repairing the sidewalks, why don’t we add art to them as well?

I was pretty proud of my idea and as I went along I felt like I accomplished what I needed to do. One thing that I wish I could of done was figure out how to put captions under or beside the pictures without messing up the format that I had going. That was one thing that frustrated me a lot towards the end of my work, bu other than that I feel like this project was a success.


Imperium Project

Recently in Latin class we did a project on Roman provinces. Each person was assigned a Roman province and had to research them before, during, and after Rome in history. I got the province Aegyptus which is modern day Egypt, and this is the slide show I did:

While doing the project I felt pretty good about how the slide show went. My goal was to research the information about Egypt that I needed and make the slide show to present to the class later, and I did just that. There wasn’t really any lofty goals to this project, just the basics. I learned about the culture and history of a country beyond the basics that most people know, and got to work on my presentation skills. This was a successful project to me.



Learning on the Fly

An engaging learning experience for me was in 7th grade when I took a theater class at school. I had already been in plays for the past few years, but this class would be a little different because we would be learning improv. Many of the people in the class knew each other and the people who didn’t got to know each other more during the semester. Every day it would be our first class and every day something new would happen. You would come in and see the teacher, Mr. Taylor, sometimes at the door or on stage in the black box. The class learned from games around team work and making things up on the fly which were fun and engaging. At first, some of the games were a little uncomfortable because you’d be doing silly things in front of people, but after a while you got more confident and didn’t feel as self conscious in front of people.

The big things that I learned from the class is teamwork, confidence in front of people, and coming up with things on the fly if I need to. Everyone was nice to each other and I learned skills that could help me not only in theater, but in other places as well. At the end of the semester we even got to have an improv show for our parents to show off what we’ve learned which was super fun. I learned a lot from this class and I’m glad that I got to have the experience.