Friday, December 3, 2010

Setting As The World

Setting as the World: The Tent in My Living Room

            My first house was the smallest of the three houses I have lived in. I lived in the first house from the time I was born till about the age of six. I remember spending a lot of time in the living room. Like the rest of my house, my living room was small but comfortable. The living room was often a place for relaxation, family time, or watching television, but there is one specific activity I remember doing in my living room that always brings a smile to my face. I use to, believe it or not, camp out in the living room with my brother.
            I owned a small, red Lion King tent that was stationed in a corner of my living room. I use to imagine the soft, red carpet was actually soft, green grass. The table in the center of the living room would transform into a campfire before my eyes. The plain, rough textured ceiling would suddenly brighten up with stars when the lights turned off.  I clearly remember the “swoosh” sound the tent use to make as I tossed and turned trying to find the perfect spot. The cream colored walls would mold into mysterious trees with one blink of my eye. My brother was much older than I was and sometimes felt forced to camp out with me, but I loved every minute of it. During the day my living room was a place of safety but come night time a magical world would open up and my imagination could do as it pleased.

Bullying

Semester Essay # 8 Prompt 36

Elementary and secondary schools around the country are beginning to actively address the problem of bullies. In your opinion, is bullying an issue that should be addressed by schools or left to parents? Use specific reasons and examples to support your position.

            Bullying is an immensely serious subject because it often involves the emotional or physical abuse of one person by another. Alone, bullying in general sounds horrible. Now, imagine this being done to a child no bigger than seven years old by a much older child, say about fifteen years old. If you look at this situation from the younger child’s point of view, it could be one very traumatic experience. Who do you, as the bullied child turn to, your parents of course. Who do your parents turn to, the school of course. For this reason I believe bullying is an issue that should be addressed by both elementary and secondary schools, as well as by parents.
            It is not a secret that children do not like to tell every detail about their lives to their parents. Some children might find it embarrassing to tell their parents that they are being bullied for any number of reasons. Others may simply think they will be ridiculed, even more, by their older siblings if it were to be known that they were being bullied. In cases such as these, there is no one else a child can turn to except the school. And why shouldn’t they? It is the school’s duty to ensure the protection of all students on school grounds during school hours. That being said, administrators or teachers can keep a look out for the suspected bully and establish order once again.
            In other cases, a bullied child may exhibit the complete opposite behavior. They might not want the school involved at all. Some children may not wish to take it up with the school for fear of being called names and being made fun of by so called friends. Or a bullied child may fear that if he or she complained to the school, the bullying would only get worse. In such a situation, a child may find it more comfortable telling their parents they are having problems at school than telling the school itself. If a child were to come to their parents for help, it would then be up to the parents to address the problem and perhaps have a meeting with the bully’s parents. A bullied child’s parents could also ask one of the older siblings to keep a lookout for their younger brother or sister and intervene when necessary.
            No two children are completely alike. Thus, when it comes to bullying, schools and parents should both be prepared. Worse case scenario, a bullied child may not want to tell they are being bullied to the school or their parents. However, if they know they have two options to go to for help it is more likely that they will reconsider and ask someone, be it the parents or the school. Both should be prepared to address the problem and find a solution at any given time. Whatever the case, bullying only gets worse with time and the faster someone address it the safer a bullied child can feel. It is in the best interest of bullied children everywhere to have both the school and their parents be able to address bullying.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Young Person In an Old Person

Most of the time when a person becomes old they lose their young spirit, but every one in a while you come across an old person who is still young at heart. My grandpa was definitely an old person who was young at heart. Although at times he was limited in motion and endurance he never failed to smile. My grandpa would constantly try to trip me when I least expected it. Whether he failed or succeeded in his attempt to trip me he always burst out laughing. It was in moments like these that he reminded me of a child who finds joy in the simplest of things. 
            My grandpa's curiosity did not diminish as his age increased. He was always learning new things whether it be from the bible or from nature. He loved to spend time outside working on little projects. He would volunteer to fix up the house every time he came over. My grandpa thought it was a waste of time to sit around the house all day long. Despite his age, the last thing he wanted to do was watch television all day or sleep all day. He wanted to be active and be kept busy.  My grandfather was special to me and his being young at heart was one of his best qualities.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Recycling

Semester Essay # 7 Prompt 22

Carpooling, recycling, and planting trees are all activities that are good for the environment. Write an essay convincing readers to actively participate in one of these activities.

            Everyone with the ability to observe, I presume, should know what recycling is or should have at least heard of it. Recycling should be known because it is in everyone’s household or place of residency. It is the big blue trash can that sits in your driveway, backyard, etc. However, although recycling is right under people’s noses not everyone does it. Recycling has a lot of positive effects which is why I believe more people should participate in it. These positive effects benefit people in general so there is no reason why it shouldn’t be done.
            Recycling helps to minimize the use of earth’s limited natural resources. This is of great importance because it insures that what few natural resources remain will last longer. There will be more natural resources for everyone, everywhere. As one can see, recycling benefits earth’s population as a whole. It does not target one race, one culture, one country, etc. It is to the benefit of all to recycle.
            Apart from reducing the waste of earth’s natural resources, recycling also prevents the build up of waste, or in other words trash. All the trash people throw out gets sent to a landfill and sits there for a long time. When we take the time to recycle, recyclable materials such as plastic bottles and containers do not take up space in the landfill. Instead, they are reused to create another product. Would you rather have more trash sit in landfills or would you rather separate what can be reused and create more goods? To me, the choice is simple. I would much rather recycle, thus lowering the need to constantly build more landfills because of all of the waste. The worst case scenario would be for a landfill to actually end up next to one’s house. Now that would be disgusting. It’s better to never let that happen by just recycling.
            How great would it be to make a difference in the world? I don’t know if it is just me, but I am constantly hearing people say they aspire to make a change and do something special. Why not start with recycling? Believe it or not, recycling is one of the ways you can positively help the environment. We all know our environment is not currently in its best shape. Global warming, the lack of fresh water, the ozone layer, and the polar ice caps melting are all negative issues in the environment. Why add another problem? Let’s keep our environment running as it should and maintain its beauty. Recycling can assist in such a quest.
            It is interesting to consider all the great purposes recycling can serve. There will be more natural resources for future generations, less trash in landfills, and the environment will benefit. All this can be achieved if you just take the time to throw paper, plastic bottles, and all other reusable/recyclable materials away separately. In reality recycling does not ask much of you. Start making a difference today. Recycle!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Cats vs. Dogs

Cats and dogs are both domestic animals. Cats and dogs have characteristics that make them both interesting yet very different. Ever heard of the phrase "fight or flight"? Well, dogs are more of the fight part, while cats are the flight part. Cats are extremely skilled in jumping and climbing. It is quite often that I spot a cat climbing a tree or jumping down from the top of a statue. For this reason, whenever they are faced with danger or feel threaten they will resort to their skill and flee. In contrast, dogs are not the best at jumping from high places and can not climb. How many times have you found a dog climbing up a tree or telephone pole? For this reason, dogs are known to stay and face their danger. When challenged, dogs will more likely become aggressive and attack. Dogs are also way more social than cats are. Dogs enjoy the company of other dogs and people. Trained dogs will let random passersby pet them and play with them. The same can not be said for cats. Cats, most of the time, prefer to be the only pet of a household. As for letting random passersby pet them, not even trained cats like this. Most cats, or at least in my case and from those I have witnessed, runaway the moment you look at them or move one step towards them. Another difference is in their hunting skills. Cats are better at picking up quick movements and reacting while dogs are better at using their sense of smell to track. Cats and dogs have to be two of the most popular pets. Both have different personalities but both benefit from great owners and love.

Dressing for a Formal Ocassion vs. Dressing for an Informal Occasion

Dressing for a formal occasion is much different from dressing for an informal occasion. For one, dressing for an informal occasion requires less thought. Informal occasions can be hanging out with your friends or going to the grocery store. In these cases it is always an excellent idea to go with jeans. The top portion of the outfit depends on the weather. If it is hot, a t-shirt is a good way to go. If it is cold, grabbing a hoodie is a better choice. In contrast, you can not just throw something on for a formal occasion. You must first consider the type of formal occasion, for example it could be a job interview or a ball. For a job interview you must be professional. Slacks always work best. Pair slacks with a dressy shirt, vest or coat and you are well on your way to impressing by sight. However, this type of outfit would not be suitable for a ball. When you go to functions such as a ball or a dance, choosing a elegant dress for girls and a tuxedo for guys is appropriate. If you were to show up at a job interview with a long sleek red dress, a big beautiful pearl necklace, and long black gloves, you would look silly because in a sense you would be overdressed. When you dress for an informal occasion you are dressing to suit your comfort zone. In contrast when you are dressing for a formal occasion, you are dressing to impress. One requires less thought but when dressing for both occasions, the weather should affect the final outcome.

Raw Foods vs Cooked Foods

There is a clear difference between raw foods and cooked foods. Raw food have absolutely not been cooked in any way, shape or form. In contrast, as its name suggests, cooked foods have absolutely been cooked. One clear example can be seen in apples. When you eat an apple just the way it is you can in a sense say you are eating the apple raw. However when you eat apples in an apple pie, the same can not be said. Apples in apple pie have to have passed time in an oven. Thus, the apples have been cooked. The difference between raw and cooked foods can also be seen in the texture of the food. Continuing with the example of an apple, when an apple is eaten raw it is crunchy, juicy, and hard. When an apple is eaten cooked it is the complete opposite. Once cooked, an apple is no longer as crunchy or hard. In fact, cooked apples soften up and are of course, warm. It is possible for the apple to maintain its juiciness, but that quality won't be as obvious as it once was. Raw foods also contrast to cooked foods when it comes to added ingredients. When you eat raw foods, such as an apple, most people eat it just the way it is. However, part of the fun of cooking foods is making different combinations. When you cook the apple in an apple pie, it is likely that now the apple has been mixed with cinnamon and other ingredients. The difference between raw apples and cooked apples is just one example. Most of the time it takes raw foods to make cooked foods. Both are equally as satisfying, depending on the nature of your hunger.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Spicy Foods vs. Sweet Foods

Sweet and spicy foods are two completely different types of tastes. Sweet food has the flavor of sugar. Sugar is what makes sweet food sweet. In contrast, spicy food has little to no sugar and if it does then it can not be detected. As its name suggests, spicy food usually has a mixture of spices. When you eat sweet foods you stimulate your taste buds in a different way then when you eat spicy foods. Sweet foods such as chocolate or cake taste sugary  and smooth. It is, no pun intended and for the lack of a better word, a sweet taste. In contrast spicy foods can create that sense where you are dying for water. Spicy foods are the ones that leave you sucking in air to rid yourself of the strangely addicting burn in your mouth. Spicy foods are the ones that leave your tongue tingling. When you compare a lollipop to a jalapeno the difference is pretty clear. One is a ball of sugar and one is a mouth full of hot. The same thing applies to a pie and Spicy gumbo. The pie satisfies the sweet tooth while the spicy gumbo satisfies your need for "pop". Sweet foods are more delicate in taste while spicy food have an added "bam" to it. In both cases, sweet and spicy foods satisfy the hunger of many people and when combined, at times, can create a beautiful neutral dish.

How Weather Affects My Mood

Weather definitely has the power to affect my mood. On sunny days everything looks bright and rays come in through the cracks in the window. Due to the bright nature of a sunny day, I too feel bright and full of energy. The sunny weather makes me want to be outside and awake. However, sometimes when it is extremely hot I feel irritable and wish I could just be in a pool all day. In contrast, cloudy weather is the complete opposite. When it is cloudy, everything looks gray and dark. Because of this I too feel gloomy. I feel like being inside the house and sleeping all day. The nature outside doesn't seem to be awake and thus I end up feeling sleepy. On rainy days the drops of water make a splish splashy sound. Sometimes, not always, this makes me want to go outside and play in the rain. I want to feel the rain on my skin. Other times it makes me want to stay inside and stay warm under a blanket. When the weather forecast is heavy winds I sometimes feel like being outside just to feel the wind move through my hair. Other times, since I see the trees almost in a wrestling battle with the wind, I feel like staying safe inside my house where everything is peaceful and calm. I don't necessarily feel these ways every time the weather changes. While weather has the power to affect my mood it does not always do so.

Public Schooling vs. Homeschooling

Public Schooling and Homeschooling are two completely different experiences. On both occasions, material is being taught and learning is being done. Material for the appropriate grade level is being taught to the child in the corresponding grade. With that said, almost everything else is different. When it comes to public schooling you can expect there to be a lot of children. There are children from various age ranges, in various grades. In contrast, when it comes to homeschooling you can expect only one child. While homeschooling is not only limited to one child, the majority of children home schooled in one household most likely does not exceed five. Homeschooling is chosen by some parents because of the extra attention a child receives. In public school the ratio of students to teaches is probably about 30:1. On the contrary the ratio of students to teacher in homeschooling is about 1:1. there is a huge difference in these ratios and the attention a teacher can give to a particular student depends on these numbers. Thus, children in homeschooling benefit from a one on one student- teacher relationship. What homeschooling does not have that public schooling does is the opportunity for social interaction and social growth. Public schooling is also free while home schooling under most circumstances has to be paid for. When it comes to public schooling vs. homeschooling, both have much to offer, both have a few cons, and both are up to the parents to decide.

Allowances

Semester Essay # 6 Prompt 5

Many Parents give children a weekly or monthly allowance regardless of their behavior because they believe an allowance teaches children to be financially responsible. Other parents only give children an allowance as a reward for completing chores or when they have behaved properly. Explain what you think parents should do and why.

            Regardless on what condition or to what standards a child receives an allowance, receiving an allowance at all is a privilege. Not every child receives an allowance but most if not all would not mind one. However, I believe an allowance can teach valuable lessons and for that reason I think an allowance should be earned. An allowance should not be given regardless of a child’s behavior. An allowance should be given as a reward for completing chores asked and for showing exemplary behavior.
            An allowance can teach a child a lot about the world that will come running at them in just a couple of years. It will teach them financial responsibility, and with that point alone I argue nothing. Financial responsibility in an unstable financial world is a necessity. Without financial responsibility, the chances of a person living with as little debt as possible are impossible. My argument comes in when parents continue to give children an allowance without having them earn it on the sole reason of financial responsibility. In the real world money will not be handed to them every week by people for no reason at all. It would be great to have a world where money is given out every week for free but the reality is that in the real world you will have to earn money. Basically if you want money you will have to work for it. That is a fact of life for all working class people so why not start teaching a child that from the beginning, and what better way than by having them earn their allowance.  When parents have their children do chores in order to receive an allowance, the children learn that they have to work to receive money.
            Parents should also give an allowance if the children behave properly. If a child behaves horribly and still receives an allowance they learn that they can do whatever they want and still get money. Growing up with this state of mind will get a child into a lot of trouble and ultimately cost them a great, successful future. In the working world, if you behave horribly at your job you are fired. If you do not listen to your boss and respond with negative comments you are fired. For this reason an allowance should be given if and only if the child behaves properly. It is better to teach a child that bad behavior gains nothing by not giving them an allowance when they act terrible, than have them face the consequences when they grow up and learn this lesson the hard way. Overall, the lessons that come with making a child earn their allowance benefits them more than not making them earn it. Making a child work for his or her allowance is better parenting and will account for better children.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Understanding vs. Knowledge

As written in dictionary.com, understanding is the mental process of a person who comprehends while knowledge is the acquaintance of facts, truths, or principles, as from study or investigation. Both understanding and knowledge are mental process a person makes. However, I believe there is a difference. For you to understand something, there must be a "click" in your mind. for example if you see a rose flower with thorns on the stem and someone tells you that thorn hurts, it is easy for something to click in your mind and you to see the sharpness to the thorn and understand that that thorn can hurt you. However, you do not know how much it could hurt you or what the degree of pain is. That comes from knowledge because the only way you can find out exactly how much it hurts is by experiencing it yourself.  Understanding comes from the mind while knowledge comes from an act. In other words you do not need knowledge to understand. You can understand something first and then choose whether you want to investigate it and become knowledgeable on the particular subject. Having knowledge is going beyond what a normal person would understand in a subject. Understanding and knowledge can work together or they can stand alone. Either way both are important.

An Especially Interesting Person

I know many interesting people and for that I am grateful, but the most recent interesting person in my life is my niece, Grace. She is six months old and adorable. The reason I say she is interesting is because I can never tell what she is truly thinking. I guess that is a quality of babies that makes them especially interesting. You could always take a guess at what goes on in their mind but until they can talk there is no way of knowing for sure. Making Grace laugh is one of the greatest feelings. I have narrowed it down to three reasons. One she either laughs because she thinks what I did was funny, two she laughs of nerves, and three she thinks I'm crazy. Whatever the answer is the laugh is worth it. Sometimes I feel I am so close to making Grace laugh but she just won't. I start jumping around and making faces and tickling her. She will laugh and make little squeaks that lets you know she is so close to laughing but then she somehow makes it stop. Grace is interesting because she is so interested in everything. She wants to touch every thing and then put it in her mouth. She has even tried to bite my cheek once or twice or she will stare at something for a long time and I wonder what she is thinking. Other times she can't stop looking around. It is interesting to contemplate the way Grace sees the world.

Effective Teacher

I have been lucky enough to encounter various effective teachers throughout my years in school. One of the most effective teachers I have ever had is my fifth grade teacher, Mr. Evans. Mr. Evans was the teacher for gifted students at Bennett Kew Elementary School. I came into the school year late because I had just moved to Inglewood from Echo Park. When I got to his class, that first day was horrible. True to the gifted part, the class was way ahead in the curriculum than I was in my old school. I did not know if I would be able to catch up but Mr. Evans told me to keep going. Mr. Evans was a effective teacher because he made learning fun. He would have us play games, sing songs in the morning, and earn bear bucks. Nevertheless, he constantly expected the best from his students. I personally feel he made math easy to understand and quite enjoyable. Reading was a pleasure in his class. There was even a competition when it came to reading books from a list. I felt I would never come close to winning the competition and at the end of the school year I took first place in the accelerated Reading Competition. He gave rewards for good manners. One time I remember he was passing out pretzels to the class. I was the only one to say thank you and I got five extra pretzels. After that everyone always remembered to say thank you. Mr. Evans even had a class game of pushing chairs in the desks. When a student got up they were supposed to push their chair into their desk. if they failed to do so, another student from another group could get up and push the chair in for the other student. Thus the student who failed to push in their chair would lose a point for their group while the student who pushed in the chair would get a point for their group. Mr. Evans was a great effective teacher.

Memoir

“Don’t judge a book by its cover,” is a phrase most people have heard but not everyone has experienced. Without a doubt, there must have been a time where most of us have judged someone before getting to know them. For the most part when we judge someone else we tend to let it go and move on. However, being on the other side of the spectrum seems to create more of a lasting impact. Unfortunately I am not able to say I have never been judged because I have.
            I remember coming out from middle school on a hot day and I was thirsty. Being aware of the long walk to home I had ahead of me, I decided to buy a drink and a snack. For some reason, that day, I decided to take a different route home. I found a liquor store about three blocks into my walk and I went in. As soon as I walked in a tall Chinese man approached me. “Take off your backpack and leave it on the floor,” was his order. I was completely confused but nevertheless obliged to his demand. I took my backpack off and left it by the entrance. 
            I had never been in this liquor store before so I took a couple of seconds to locate the snacks and spot the drinks. I approached the snack first and immediately noticed the Chinese man follow me to the aisle. I ignored it at first, but I was undoubtedly bothered. I didn’t even grab a snack before proceeding to the drinks section. Again, the Chinese man followed me to the aisle I was in. He was never more than a couple feet behind. I had never experienced something like this and my immediate emotion was anger. I was so angry I walked out of the liquor store without buying anything. I couldn’t believe the man could suspect me of stealing. Never in my life would I commit something like that. Besides, the guy didn’t even know who I was. He just assumed I walked in with the intention to rob his store. He judged me and my actions the moment I set foot in his store. It has been an event I have never placed out of my memories.

Personal Essay

Brrrp!! The whistle echoed in the field and the soccer game was declared over. We had won! We had made it to the playoffs! The score was one to zero in sudden death overtime. The other team, from Riverside, kept shooting the ball at our net yet by some miracle, we ended up with the goal. We erupted into screams and cheers. Besides us screaming, everything else and everyone else was dead silent. We were playing at Riverside, so we were not the home team. All of their fans and the players were in shock, but we didn’t care. We had won and that was all that mattered. Within all of this excitement and celebration, I noticed a small sting of pain in my left knee. I made nothing of it and continued to celebrate.
            The next morning the small sting became a large shooting pain. I iced my left knee and hoped it would be okay. The following day was game day again. The game was to be held at Santa Maria, a total of about three hours from Inglewood.  While on the bus, I did everything possible to keep my knee from as much pain as possible. I kept my left knee propped up and did my best to resist the urge to bend it. When our team finally reached our destination, I put my knee down. As I got of the bus, an explosion of sharp pain tortured my knee. I hoped that somehow I would be able to get through the game.
            Before every game, my team always stretches. Stretching warms up your muscles and prevents cramps. However, I was finding stretching to be harder than usual. I didn’t have time to wonder about that because the game was minutes from starting and I couldn’t risk getting any other injuries. For the first forty minutes of the game, I put forth major effort. Unfortunately my injury prevented me from doing my best. I could see this when I tried to sprint. I had to tense my jay and squeeze my fist to be able to resist the pain with every stride I took. Then around the last five minutes of the first half, everything changed. One of the girls from the other team collided with me and her leg hit my knee with major force. I collapsed to the ground. The pain was unbearable; tears of anger and disappointment streamed down my face. I had to face the fact that I would not be able to make it through the game. This time when the final whistle blew it was a sound of defeat, but what hurt the most was that I did not finish the game. Disappointment sucks. However, I understood nothing could be done to change what happened. I guess you win some and you loose some.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Not Getting Enough Sleep

Not getting enough sleep can affect your day horribly. Sleeping is a way for your body to reboot on energy. When you do not get enough sleep then you do not get enough energy. needless to say, not having enough energy for a busy day is not a good thing. Not getting enough sleep causes your concentration and focus to be off. You become easily distracted and may find it hard to stay on task. You may also experience fatigue right from the get go. Every task becomes harder and you feel like you are moving super slow. You may try to mask this feeling by drinking coffee, other caffeine drinks, or eating sugar, but the effects of theses items are temporary and can not replace the value of sleep.  Although it is rare,  sometimes when you do not get enough sleep you wake up feeling like you have a lot of energy. You go through the morning with no problem at all and handle business as usual. Unfortunately this effect is often temporary. before your work day or school day is over, you have run out of energy and the true effects of not getting enough sleep start to kick in. Fatigue immediately sets and all you want to do is go and get some sleep.

Movie: Salt

Salt was an amazing action packed movie starring Angelina Jolie, and I expect nothing less from the best action actress. In the movie Salt, there is a CIA agent whose name is Evelyn Salt. Her job is to interrogate suspects. One day a Russian man walks in and says he has something important to tell the CIA. Evelyn Salt goes and interrogates him. He tells the story of a child training program in Russia that trained Russian children to destroy America. The Russian children learn English before Russian and American customs. They wait for years to complete their given task. The man goes on to say that their is a Russian spy in the CIA. Evelyn says that is ridiculous and starts to leave. He turn around and says "The name of the spy is Evelyn Salt." Evelyn turns around and says "My name is Evelyn Salt." To this the man answers, "Then you are a Russian Spy." With these words all the action in the movie begins. Evelyn immediately denies that she is a Russian Spy and tries to get in contact with her husband. The viewers believe that she is good, but the CIA immediately begins to chase her down after she cunningly escaped the interrogation building. However, Evelyn starts to engage in the activities the Russian man said the Russian Spy was trained to do. She apparently kills the Russian president so that the Russian people will retaliate against America. She then meets up with the guy who outed her out and gives him a hug and there seems to be a fatherly relationship between the man and her. As she walks into their secret layer, her "Russian operative brothers" shoot her husband right in front of her and pay close attention to her reaction. She makes sure to show no reaction and acts as if she doesn't care. The "brothers" and head guy embrace her and welcome her back.  Up to this point the viewers now believe she is evil and truly is out to destroy America. However, everything is flipped once again when she kills all her "Russian brothers" and the man in charge. In the end it turns out she was a sort of double spy. She pretended to be American so that the Russian party would believe she was completing her task but was in fact trying to prevent the destruction of America. She was doing this because "they" took everything from her: her parents, her childhood, her husband. It is definitely an interesting movie that will keep you at the edge of your seats but it is important to pay close attention.

Year Abroad

I am about to spend a year abroad in Italy and must learn Italian in about two weeks. What do I do? The first step I take is to go out and buy one of those DVDs that help you learn foreign languages fast and easy. Examples of this include Rosetta Stone and any other similar teaching guide. I will create a schedule for me to watch and learn Italian at least two hours a day. If I watch these videos and repeat what they say I am sure I will start to pick up the basics of Italian quickly. However, I must stay committed and not give up when I become frustrated. Next I will go out and practice my Italian. I will go out to restaurants and see if i can order food in Italian. I might go out to a bookstore and see if I can read an Italian book. Learning Italian for me will consist of hearing and then practicing with other people. if I don't practice then I will not get the hang of it. Practicing with other people is important because they can interact with me in a way that the DVD/ television ca not. They can give me extra pointers and point out what I am doing wrong.I will have an advantage in learning Italian because I know Spanish and Italian consists of some similarities to Italian. If I follow theses steps I should pick up Italian quickly for my year abroad trip.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Music Video

One music video that I like a lot is actually a scene in a movie but can be seen as a music video online. The video I am talking about is called "Only Hope" and is sung by Mandy Moore. It is a song she sung in the movie "A Walk to Remember" This music video is so cute and inspirational. The main character, Jamie Sullivan (Mandy Moore) is singing the song as part of a school play. It is in her singing of the song that the male main character Landon Carter (Shane West) realizes that he is in love with Jaime. His macho, cool personality seems to disappear from his face and he is left looking vulnerable and scared. The words in the music video are about understanding that Jesus is hope. Mandy Moore's voice is so smooth and beautiful that it is perfect for this song and scene. Her angelic voice brings out the emotion of the viewers and their acting only makes it better. At the end of the song Jaime sits back down and looks at Landon. Something overcomes Landon and he leans forward and kisses her gently. He couldn't resist. The kiss was not part of the scene in the play so it shows that he truly does love her. he leaves Jamie surprised and even surprises himself. This song is powerful.

Teenage Fad


One teenage fad going on in this moment and time is the fad of ear gauges. I personally am not a fan of stretching your ears but a lot of teenagers are doing it. I believe this stretching of the ears is so popular because since teens see a lot of people doing it they too go and get them done, and then other see them thus, they go get their ears done and the cycle continues. Another reason I have heard from friends is that when you are stretching your ears you develop an addiction to the pain. Now I am not sure that this is true for everyone with ear gauges but it is true for at least one person. Many teens have been going for a rocker type look and these ear gauges complement such a desire. However, the ear gauges are also popular because they don't necessarily have to be for a rocker style, although the majority of teens who have it seem to be going for such a look. Gauges come in many different colors and styles. Overall I feel ear gauges are popular among teens because it is the new thing right now and teens are always looking for the new thing because they in fact have not found their true identity yet. It is completely understandable for teens to experiment with styles. however, the reason  I am not a fan of this fad is because I don't want to end up with stretched ears for the rest of my life. I do not find stretched ears to be cute. That is a personal reason, and anyone else who disagrees is free to get ear gauges. I believe this fad like many others will eventually come to an end or at least decrease in popularity.

People and Animals

The relationship some people have with their animals can sometimes be one of the most beautiful relationships. When a person shares a deep connection with their animal their is a mutual love that resonates whenever they are around each other. When a animal commits to a relationship with a human they have committed their loyalty and sometimes even their life. The animal will immediately act if it feels their person is in danger and may even risk their life to save that of their partner. I think relationships between people and their animals are so great because the person finds a non judgmental factor in the animal. No matter how bad the person acted at work or what he did while driving, the animal looks right past it and continues to love the person. This gives the person a sense of security in knowing that even if he commits mistakes there will always be someone at home who loves him. To the animal the person serves as a master. the person gives commands and if obeyed the animal gets treats. The person feeds them, plays with them, and shows affection with pats and "good boys." It is a relationship where there is a balance between give and take. Another relationship animals have with people is that of service. Some animals serve their person as eyes. they are a form of guidance. Animals and people create bonds that last a long time.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Best Dessert Ever

The most luscious, decadent dessert ever has to be something with milk chocolate. As a chocolate lover, I would start of by having a milk chocolate cake. Inside, the filling would be of a vanilla butter cream of some sort or a mixture of strawberry vanilla. This would add more depth to the cake instead of it just being only chocolate. The outside frosting would be chocolate mousse, handmade and whipped of course. On top would be some chocolate dipped strawberries and some milk chocolate shavings. On the side would be one of two choices. The first choice is a scoop of french vanilla ice cream to add contrast to the sense of the tongue. The second choice is a cold glass of milk to help the chocolate delight go down. Either way both choices would add quality to the already amazing dessert. This dessert would immediately warm the taste buds and create an explosion of smooth goodness. I can already imagine the touch of the chocolate on my lips as it lands on my tongue and creates music on impact. As it goes down my throat, my taste buds are already begging for more.With such a deliciously good dessert at hand, taking the last bite would be so sad yet so satisfying. I seriously wish I had this creation of yum in front of me right now.

Modern Life Without Cell Phones

Cell phones in this day and era have become a way of life. If I were to stop one hundred people and ask how many had cell phones, I am almost positive 97 people would say they do. In this day and age, cell phones are a must. Almost every one has a cell phone or wants one. People use it to stay in contact with other people. Text messaging has also become a popular bonus to a cell phone. Needless to say, modern life would be extremely different without cell phones. People would not have the luxury of pushing a couple of buttons and all of a sudden being in communication with someone far away. If cell phones did not exist, people would have to write letters for everything. If they want to say something to a person, they would have to write it or use email. Either way communicating with someone within seconds would no longer be possible. If you wanted to share a quick thought or memo with someone, you wouldn't be able to just call them or text them. You would have to wait a long time to tell them what was on your mind. If you were lost and needed directions, you couldn't just call someone and ask for help. if you were meeting up with someone you wouldn't be able to call them and ask them to describe where they were. You would be left wandering for who knows how long. Life without cell phones is filled with a lot of "can nots". Basically, modern life without cell phones wouldn't be so modern. Life would be a lot harder.

Spain

I would definitely be interested in getting the chance to go visit Spain. I would want to go visit the country Spain because there is just so much to do. I could go see Barcelona or Madrid. I could take a trip to Granada or Toledo. I love to play soccer and if I had the chance to go to Barcelona, Spain, without a doubt I would go see FC Barcelona play a soccer game in their amazing stadium. The food in any one of these popular places of Spain would be a privilege to taste. Best of all, the language of Spain would be no problem at all since I so happen to speak Spanish as well. While in Spain, I would be interested to learn about the royal history of such a country. I would also love to go see many of Spain most interesting attractions such as the beautiful gardens and architectural wonders of Alhambra in Granada. The running of the bulls is something I would never dare to try but I would not mind watching it from an elevated position. I also find Spain appealing because of its beautiful because and islands. Before I leave Spain I would have to do some serious shopping at their many wonderful stores and plazas. Overall, I find Spain so appealing because there is so much to do and so much to see.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Attending College Out of State

Deciding to attend college in another state is a bold choice that requires specific preparation. Attending college in another state will be a challenge, for one you will not be with your family. Before attending an out of state institution of your choice you must be certain that you have a place to stay. You can't very well be homeless. Arrange to live in the dorms or to rent an apartment. Be aware of certain deadlines the college of your choice might set for students with the intention of living on campus. Another task you must complete is figuring out how to move all of your necessities to the place you will be living at. If you are going out of state, chances are that you will have to take an airplane to reach your college or drive for quite a few hours. If you are traveling by airplane you should find out if it is possible to fly all of your necessities with you or if you will have to pay extra. After all, if I am correct, I assume you can not ride the airplane carrying a mattress :). If you plan on going to your college by automobile, you might have to make more than one trip to deliver any furniture, mattress, or any other large item. Last but certainly not least, before going of to college in another state, figure out a way to stay in touch with your family, whether it be by email, phone, or even facebook. Consider your family, and yes even your crying mother as she begs you not to go. Stay strong, keep in touch, and your out of state college experience should be one worth remembering.

Friend's birthday

My friend's birthday is coming up and I have decided to make it one she will never forget. I decide to throw her a party. I run out and get invitations to send. However, first I need to ask her parents if it is okay to throw her a party. I would also hope that they would want to come and invite any other family members important in the life of my friend. I would make sure the birthday consists of all her favorites: her favorite color, her favorite music, her favorite food, and her favorite cake. I would probably set it up to be after soccer practice so that she does not expect it. I would make up some excuse for her to go to my house, like say i would tell her that I have a present for her but it was to big to bring it to school. That way when she walks in the house she is surprised by the party. Everybody important in her life would be there. We would sing happy birthday to her and push her face in the cake. Then I would take the time to wish her a happy birthday and say a couple of other sweet words. After that we would open presents and take lots and lots of pictures. The pictures would last as a memory. Above all it would be a party especially for her. All attention would be on my friend and I bet she would love that.

Decade

If  I could live during any decade I would chose to live in the eighties. The eighties is one of the most talked about decades and I would want to see what all the hype is about. The eighties is known for big hair and crazy outfits. I would definitely be curious as to how I would dress if i lived in the eighties. I wonder what I would look like with big hair and stonewashed denim jeans. I currently live in a world where technology is everything. I would be interested to see how life would be like with absolutely no texting or touch screens. I am sure the amount and quality of television shows would decline but I wouldn't mind. The eighties was also a time where money went a longer way. Things were cheaper and came in a greater amount back then. It would be a nice change to get more value for my money. Music from the eighties must have also been different. I would like to experience the music craze back then as well. I think the eighties was a decade where life was a little simpler and more relaxed. That would be a nice change in comparison to the now hectic, stressful style of living most Americans live. Overall I would just be curious to experience the general atmosphere of the eighties.

Large Families vs. Small Families

Semester Essay # 5 Prompt 16

            A few decades ago, many families had a half a dozen or more children. Nowadays, more and more families are choosing to have only one or two children. Are smaller families better than larger ones? Why or why not? State your position and support it with specific reason and examples.

            Decades ago large families use to be a common sight and life style. I can testify to this statement because my mother herself comes from a family of about seven siblings and my father comes from a family of about nine siblings. Large families were everywhere and at that time had many benefits. Nowadays, families have gotten smaller. I come from a family where I have two siblings. Compared to that of my mother’s and father’s our family size is noticeably undersized. However, I believe that times have changed and smaller families are better than larger families.
            Larger families served a greater purpose in times like the 1800’s and 1900’s. Large families were especially useful in areas of farming were constant work was always needed. More children meant more hands, which meant less work for everybody else and that the work got done faster. Feeding the children was no problem for the parents because they could eat from the crops they harvested. Large families were also useful when the industrial revolution kicked in. Many jobs were available, and at the time when the industrial revolution first started children were allowed to work. Children were especially useful for jobs were small nimble fingers were needed; children could also much easily crouch into small tight spaces. Finding a job for a child was no hard task. In this case more children meant more workers, which in turn brought in more money for the parents.
            One must keep in mind the fact that the cost of living has risen dramatically since the 1800’s and 1900’s. Although a common sight back then, it is rare to find anything sold for a nickel in these modern times. We now live in a society were a dollar has virtually no value. Large families were easier to maintain back then because they could be afforded. Nowadays, a large family would be realistically unaffordable. Children under a certain age can not work so it is not like the children would be bringing in money. The majority of people have also moved out of an agricultural style of living. I am not saying that there aren’t any more farms, but most people live in cities and urban areas. From a financial point of view small families would be the wise decision. Small families are better than large ones now, because a family can live at a much more comfortable style if there are fewer people to have to worry about.
            Imagine having a family of twelve children and two parents.  Two to twelve is a major challenge. With only two parents available the twelve children would be in a constant competition for attention. In smaller families the ratio is usually two parents to about three children. This is a much more manageable situation. Raising children is already a hard task but when you have about twelve children fighting for two people’s attention there is bound to be more chaos and disorder than usual. In smaller families each child will receive more parental attention which in turn is likely to boost a child’s confidence level and make them feel loved. Time changes many things, and while a few decades ago large families were popular the facts show that in this day and age small families are better.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Appreciating Your Parents

At the end of the day, no matter what your parents did to make you mad or to embarrass you, they truly deserve to be appreciated. From the moment you were born your parents have loved you and have always been there for you. They bought everything for you and even put your needs and sometimes wants before their own. Parents would buy that special barbie doll house you were begging for instead of upgrading their cell phone. Parents deserve to be appreciated because they sacrificed a lot for you out of love. They put food on the table, clothes on your body, and a roof over your head. they did all of this and still let us throw tantrums and beg for more or cry or argue with them. Parents were there to wipe the tears from our eyes or clean the blood off of our knees when we fell. They were there to tuck us in bed and read us a bed time story. They helped us learn how to read and how to write. they taught us how to get on a bike and ride it without training wheels. They took us to the beach, to Disneyland, or to the park. They let us be their special helper when they were cooking. They bought us presents and let us sleep in their beds when we were scared. They were there to talk to us when we needed advice. Parents were there to teach us how to drive. The list keeps going on and evolutionizng. Parents were there to do all of that and will continue to do more. For those reasons parents deserve to be appreciated. The main reason however is simply because they love us.

Figures of Speech

Tension floats around you when we are in the big whit room
You wear it on your face and I see it run thorough your body
I can read you like a book
Nervousness dances in the hall way between us
Dressed in clothes that are falling apart
You can’t seem to read me; you are so close.



Passion builds in her heart
Wearing her emotions and desires
He wants to get to know her and be with her
Time is stomping down his heart
It laughs at him and frustrates him as it passes so slowly
Yet he says he’ll wait.


Curiosity whispers in my ear
Draped in knowledge and stained with trouble
It springs toward me
Knowledge descends from the sky
It appears to grow with each passing second
It sings, “Let me come to you.”

Article a Newly Arrived Person

If I was asked to write an article about a person newly arrived from another country I would enjoy it. My parents came to the United States from El Salvador and I would like to see how my parents experience and the experience of the person I am interviewing relate. I would have to interview the person and then decide which information to include. I would include why they left their country and decided to come to the United States. I would want to know if they left because of a war or maybe even persecution. I would also include in my article if they are glad they came to the United States or sad about it. My article would also include what the person came to. What I mean by this is that I would ask the person if they came to the United States and had a family member already here or if they came to nothing. The majority of my article would include the person's experience in coming to America. I would include whether they came legally or illegally. If they came illegally I want to know how they came and whether they ever faced death. I would also include in my article if the person likes the United States of America so far or not. I believe if I ask the correct question my article will give a good amount of information but be interesting as well.

Preserving Family History

Imagine being presented with the opportunity to interview an older relative, in the goal of preserving family history. The questions you ask have to be well thought out and not be irrelevant. This is your own family's history so you want to make sure to keep it so that you can continue to pass it on. The first thing you must do is thank them in advance for the time they are spending allowing you to question them. Then you should begin by asking, "where are we from?" This question will allow you to find out what part of the world you are descended from: Italy, Spain, Africa. Next is "How did we get here?" This will allow you to learn about how your family emigrated from their country. Ask "Why did we leave to come here?" This will allow you to find out if there was a war, famine, or if they emigrated just because they wanted to. Next is ,"What happened when our family first came to the United States? Did they have some place to go? Did they have relatives already here? Did we have to start from scratch?" These questions will allow you the learn your families struggles. If they are married ask "How did you meet your partner? Did you marry her because you loved her or was it an arranged marriage?" Ask "What are some of our traditions. What part of our culture has been lost?" More questions will come up based on what your relatives answers but these questions should keep the interview going smoothly and allow you to learn more about your family history.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Choosing The Right College

The are many factors to consider when it comes to choosing the right college. The college you go to will be the start of your career so it is important to make a wise decision. First you need to decide whether you want to stay close to home, go some what far from home, or go out of state. For the purpose of this post lets say you have decided to stay in the state of California. The next step would be to narrow done the amount of colleges you wish to apply to. I would say that having about five colleges to apply to is a good number. in choosing these colleges there are few other things one must consider. While, no one expects you to know what you want to do for the rest of your life in terms of a career, by know you should have an idea of what you are interested in. Based on that idea you need to pick a college that has the major of you choice or majors you are interested in. For example if you are interested in the whole medical scene there is no point in applying to a clown college. Get the point? Choose a college that has a major you like but also has other majors you might want to consider. The next step would be to submit all your applications. Make sure everything the college has asked for is taken care off. As much as it sucks the next step is to wait. Once you know which colleges have accepted you, make your final decision. Re-consider your interests, where you plan on staying and anything else. Choose the college that satisfies  your requirements the most and let them know you will be attending their institution. Follow these steps and you will be college bound in no time.

Master Plan

The city of Inglewood is not known as a city that has the best communities. It is a city known for gangs and drug dealers. In fact, in my own community, there is a drug dealer across the street from where I live. Most of the time the people doing drug or getting involved in crimes are the ones who have nothing else to do. They are bored and nothing else is available. My master plan for making my community better is to create activities that people can take part in. We should create city teams and play games and have practices. We could also create more jobs for teenagers. This way they would be learning responsibility and making money an appropriate way. My community also happens to look very bad and dirty at times. Another great idea would be to create some sort of clean up crew. They could go out and clean the streets. They could help elderly people and even paint some of the lines on the roads that are faded away. Basically this community would be better if the people in it made better decisions and kept the area clean. The way to lean into a direction where this standard would be possible is to create more activities and clean up after one selves. if every one were to clean up after themselves the community would be a lot nicer. So the next time you want to through a bag of MacDonald out of a car window, just wait until you get home and through it in the trash instead.

A Typical Day In My Life

A typical day in my life is very busy. For the purpose of this blog I have decided to describe a typical Monday in my life. At 5:45 my alarm goes off and I get up to go wake up my mom. Then I get to go back to sleep until my alarm goes off for the second time at 6:30 AM. I wake up and get ready for school. I also have to wake up my brother and help him get ready for school. At 7:20 AM I have to be out of the house and going to the school bus stop. Then I have school from 8:05 AM until 2:50 PM. On Mondays I go to classes such as AP English, Creative Writing, and then I am a teacher's assistant. Some of these classes require a lot of thinking and writing and can leave me mentally exhausted. During lunch I help sell pizza as part of a way to raise money for senior activities. After school I have soccer practice for Inglewood High School from 3:30 PM until 5 PM. I wait for my mom to pick me up and she usually shows up at 5:30 PM. As soon as I get home I help my brother with his homework and use every minute I have to do my homework as well. At 7:30 PM I am off to my second soccer practice for my AYSO team. That practice ends at 9:30 PM and I am back home around 10:00 PM. I come home take a shower and then finish any homework I have left. Needless to say I am very exhausted at the end of the day and go to sleep around 11:30 PM.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Vegetable I Dislike

If I had to choose one vegetable I disliked the most it would have to be peas. Some people like them but I absolutely do not. I can not help but pick them out when they are in my food. If I am eating at someone else's house, say a friends, I will force myself to eat them by combining them with something else's and chewing them rapidly. I also take a large gulp of whatever I have to drink.I would much rather not eat them and throw them away but I do not want to seem rude. When I have reached a point where if I put another one in my mouth I will throw up I simply say I am full and thank them for a meal. Peas to me are nasty. When you eat them they are squishy and slushy. The inside part squeezes out of the outside shell and spills all over your mouth. It has a disgusting taste. When I have eaten peas i have felt like I was eating spoonfuls of buggers. Maybe my dislike of peas might change in the future but for now peas to me are horrible. Or maybe the ways in which I have eaten peas are what make me dislike them because I also can not stand onions but when I have eaten them grilled in animal fries from In-n-out I don't mind them at all. Maybe if I try peas in different ways I can teach myself to like them.

Autumn

My favorite season would definitely have to be fall. I like fall because for some reason at some point during Fall there is a combination of the other seasons. During the beginning of fall there as still sunny, warm days; days warm enough to go swimming. Then in the middle the leaves start turning colors and the trees look beautiful. Reds, oranges, and yellows start to line the sky as well as the floor. I rake the leaves in the back yard and then my brother and I run or jump through them.Fall is also the time I start getting back into soccer or in other words start getting back into shape. Then around the end of fall it starts getting cold. Some days are dark and gloomy. On theses days I love watching movies with my family. I cover myself with blankets to keep warm and then ironically eat ice cream. Fall is a medley of all the other season and I love it. I love the change in weather at times and the wind picking up. Perhaps the only thing I don't like about Autumn is that the time changes and it gets darker faster. Sometimes this make me feel like the days are shorter. However, I truly do not mind it. Fall is just a beautiful season that I look forward to it every year. I love all  the other season as well but Fall is definitely my favorite.

Brothers & Sisters

Brothers and sisters fighting is not a new topic of discussion. It is more likely than not that if you have a brother or a sister, you have fought with them at least once. However, the limit to the fighting is very important. Like I said most brothers and sisters fight, but they also forgive each other usually within minutes and move on. They do not even have to apologize to each other, they just act like nothing happened and it is forgotten. However, there are brothers and sister who take their sibling fights to another level. These types of fights last for years and years and can end up in the destruction of a happy family. Sibling rivalry is completely understandable but how you handle that situation can either build a sibling relationship or cost you a sibling. For example, if a sister were to get mad at her brother for breaking her computer and then she refused to talk or even acknowledge him, she could destroy any relationship they had a possibility of having. They would grow apart and eventually become strangers. The best way to handle siblings not getting along is to know how to forgive. If your sibling did something to you that made you mad, remember that they are a part of your family and deserve another chance. Also remember that when you do something to make your brother or sister mad, it is important to learn how to admit when your wrong. That makes it all the much easier to forgive you.  If you can not forgive you might find yourself without any one to turn to.

Friday, October 29, 2010

State of The Art Computer

If I wanted to buy a new state of the art computer I know I would do everything possible to make sure I get a good deal for a great computer. I would have to take time and put forth major effort into buying this computer because it is a major investment. This computer is not something I would buy for a week and then just throw away. In fact, I would own this computer for a number of years so I want to make sure I buy a computer that will last. First. I would research computers online so that I can get an idea of what I want in my computer and the price range I am willing to take. Second, after much research I would go to a store where I can get specific help on computers such as Office Depot or Best Buy. Assuming I choose Best Buy, I would take a little tour around the computer section and read some of the information. Once I am ready to begin buying I would find a person to assist in explaining the various pros and cons of the computers. I would them commence to asking him questions so that I can better understand the products. I understand if i am serious about buying a state of the art computer this process might take more than a couple of days. Once I have found a computer I am satisfied with I would proceed to purchase it and set it up.

College Admission Test

A college admission test can be a very nerve wrecking subject. The pressure can turn out to be unbearable and stress might start to overcome your days. All one has to do is follow a couple of steps and passing your college admission exam can be a breeze. Number one on the list should be obvious and that is to study. However, there is not a specific area to study because a college admission exam covers general topics. You should be prepared to face reading comprehension problem, sentence completion problems, and elementary math such as Algebra. Number two on the list is to stay relaxed. Many people fail their test because they are too nervous. If you stay relax you will notice that these are strategies you have been working on since the moment you set foot in a school, in this case about twelve years ago. All you need to do is be confident in your skills and the learning you retained and you will be fine. Number three is to stay focused. if you get constantly distracted, you should practice staying focused on a subject for two hours. Without focus their is no concentration and you will not be able to process the information. Lastly before taking an exam you must have gotten a good amount of rest so that your brain and body can feel energized. make sure to eat a breakfast to spark your energy source. With these tips in mind, passing your college admission test should not be so hard.

Ending a Relationship

Ending a relationship can be one of the most dreaded tasks for many people. For this reason, it is important to end a relationship on as close to a good note as possible. Before ending a relationship you must make sure if that is what you truly want to do. Take some time to think about it because it is a big decision. Once you have made your decision stick to it. When ending a relationship try to stay as calm as possible and do it as nicely as possible. It is important to remember that your soon to be ex girlfriend or ex boyfriend was once someone who meant a lot to you and will leave you with some good memories. Timing is also important when ending a relationship, for example do not break up with someone hours before a big final exam or on their birthday. That would be too devastating. Wait it out for a little while and do it at an appropriate time. However, do not force yourself to be in a relationship for a long period of time. That would be a lie and you would be unhappy. You must be prepared to explain why you are ending the relationship to your significant other. You can not just say it is over and not explain why. Your significant other deserves to know why you have made the decision to call it quits. When you are in the act of breaking up remember to stay cool, calm, and collected, but do not expect the same from your boyfriend/girlfriend. keep in mind that they might not have seen it coming and might react in sadness, shock, or anger. If they beg you to stay in the relationship do not give in just because you feel sorry for them. Breaking up is always hard to do, so hope for the best but prepare for the worst.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Making A New Friend

When we were younger and in elementary school making friends was a lot easier. All you had to do was say your name and then ask if they wanted to go play on the swings. In a matter of five seconds you had made a new friend. As we grew up it became harder to make friends. Now, friendships are not built in a couple of seconds they take time. One thing that hasn't changed is the first step to making a friend. To start off, you first have to say your name. It is important to try you hardest to not forget the other person's name. Then you need to start a conversation. Get to know each other. You should ask questions about their family and their interests. However, you must be very careful in the manner you ask your question because you do not want to seem like some weird creep. Make sure to not ask all the questions yourself. Leave time for the other person to ask you questions so that they can get to know a little something about you. Find an interest you have in common, like a sport or shopping. Start talking about that and your conversation should start flowing easier. Then maybe you should make plans to go shopping or go to the park and play you common sport. Make sure you are not late and if you can not make it because of some emergency, make sure to let the other person know. Once you find the point of common interest you and the other person can start building trust and eventually become really great friends.

My Favorite Game

My favorite elementary school game definitely has to be kickball. In the second elementary school I went to, from third to half of fifth grade, kickball was the most popular game. Handball was a close second but kickball was definitely number one. My classmates and I would watch the clock so tentatively waiting for it to be recess. Once it was recess we would run out of the class and go straight to the kickball field. Two captains would be chosen and then they would pick their teams. During recess the ones in charge of kickball were the boys. They did not like to play with girls because they thought girls were slow and soft. However they made an exception for about four girls because they were fast and were good. I was one of these girls. I liked Kickball because I felt special being one of the few girls chosen by the boys to play. Most of the other girls would beg to be picked on a team but the boys would not hear it.
Kickball is similar to baseball except without a bat and gloves. The ball is also much bigger and there are four bases and one pitcher. The pitcher roles the ball to the kicker and the kicker has to try to kick the ball as hard as possible. Once they kick the ball they have to take of running to the base. If an outfielder catches the ball it is an automatic out. If they do not catch the ball but tag you with the ball before you are at the base then that is also an out. I liked kickball because I liked the touch of the ball on my foot when I struck it with all my strength. It was also fun to get some of the boys out. Kickball was a game that ended with elementary school but I got a lot of good memories from it.

Prejudice

According to dictionary.com, prejudice is an unfavorable opinion or feeling formed beforehand or without knowledge, thought, or reason. Prejudice is a dangerous area that can cause many negative effects. One thing that causes prejudice is the desire to be superior to another person. When a white American decides their race is superior to a Hispanic American then they are being prejudice. They have not gotten to know the Hispanic and assumed they were better beforehand. They didn't even take the time to find out if the Hispanic was maybe some sort of genius or athletic superstar. The white American just saw the color of the skin and assumed the Hispanic was worthless.
Prejudice has a history of negativity. Who among us can forget one of the major acts of prejudice as well as one of the most horrible; the holocaust. The Holocaust was a major act of prejudice against Jewish people. The Holocaust also demonstrates one of the effects of prejudice, suffering. When their is prejudice the people who are being judged beforehand are the ones who suffer. They do not get fair or equal treatment and their lives are made much more harder. They are given no voice and seen as animals.
Prejudice is also caused by the result of parenting. Sometimes parents hand down their prejudice towards certain people to their children. Their children then become prejudice and the cycle continues. Another effect of prejudice is hatred. People who are being prejudiced upon develop a deep seeded hatred towards those inflicting the prejudice. Prejudice is just bad news and we are better of without it.

Driving Age

Semester Essay # 4 Prompt 10

Most states allow people to get a driver’s license at the age of 16. Some people feel that 16 is much too young for the responsibility that comes with driving a car and that teenagers should not be allowed to drive until the age of 18. In your opinion, at what age should people be allowed to drive, and why?

            Driving a vehicle is both a privilege and a major responsibility. Driving requires a person that can maintain focus, conduct a car as safely as possible, and follow the rules of the road. I believe the driving age should be kept at sixteen in those states who already have that law and that it should be set at sixteen in those states that do not. The driving age should be kept at sixteen because teenagers can handle the responsibility that comes with it and learn safe driving from the beginning.
            Responsibility is an area people will have to face for the rest of their lives because people will always be accountable for something for the rest of their lives. In this case, one will be held accountable for driving in such a manner that the safety of others as well as the driver’s is always a priority. Setting the driving age to sixteen will allow teenagers to learn the previously stated statement better. Although driving is a great way to travel, it is definitely dangerous if not done properly. It is also an area where the longer you drive the better you get at it, or in other words practice makes perfect. Having the driving age at sixteen would be a great way to teach a teenager responsibility, especially because driving is something they look forward to learning, thus it can be expected that if strict rules are enforced teenagers will follow them, just so they can drive. Starting drivers at sixteen will make them all around better drivers.
            However driving will not be a benefit just handed to sixteen year olds. They will have to earn it. As I stated at the beginning driving is a privilege and because the age of sixteen is considered a minor age there are certain requirements that make it a challenge to drive at sixteen. For a teenager to be able to legally drive at the age of sixteen they have to take a driver’s education class, a driver’s training class, pass the written test, have a permit for at least six months, and pass a driver’s test all so they can get their license. So as one can see a teenager legally driving at the age of sixteen has earned their right to drive.
Some people say that sixteen year old drivers are reckless and unsafe but if this were true they wouldn’t have been able to get there license. Sure some teenage drivers are better than others and make dangerous decisions but the same can be said for adults, otherwise we wouldn’t have car accidents everyday. Car accidents in a world where millions of people drive are inevitable; and although teenagers do account for some of those accidents they should not have to take the blame for all of them.
            I learned to drive at the age of sixteen and I have since never gotten in a car accident. I can say from experience that the majority of reckless driver’s I see are adults. It is not fair to use that excuse to deny sixteen year olds the right to drive. I believe sixteen is the perfect age to get a driver’s license. It is not too young to the point where you are incapable of handling responsibility and it is not too old to the point where you are considered an adult. Pushing back the driving age to eighteen will also push back the development of responsibility of teens when it comes to driving. The driving age should be sixteen because teens will learn road responsibility and road safety earlier and with more enthusiasm.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Impulse Buying

Impulse buying is one of those bad problems most people do not hear about. Impulse buying is when someone purchases items in the "spur of the moment" constantly. Impulse buying can be caused by a number of reasons. One cause of impulse buying can be related to a person's emotions. When some people get mad or sad they usually cry. However, other people try to mask that pain by shopping. They buy whatever is available without even thinking or planning to buy it. Impulse buying usually starts with little things. A person might buy ten chocolate bars or fifty books. Unfortunately this can lead to buying more expensive things like a car or twenty new outfits. Because impulse buying happens in the spur of the moment most impulse buyers use credit cards. When people are not careful and participate in impulse buying they could find themselves in a whole bunch of financial problems down the road. Impulse buying is also caused when people easily give in to promotional messages. Some people can not resist the urge to buy the latest product or call in to order from the latest infomercial. Due to this they are constantly ordering new products without even thinking about the effects. Impulse buying can seem like it is helping at the time but most impulse buyers are left with a feeling of guilt and disappointment afterwards. They feel worst after then they did before. Overall impulse buying solves nothing at all. Instead it adds more problems to an already problematic life.

Pollution Explained

One day I was running around for exercise on a giant green field. It was the early morning and I was the only one on the field. I was listening to my ipod when all of a sudden I heard a loud BOOM! I thought it was my ipod at first but when I realized it wasn't I turned around. I stared at the vast emptiness for about two minutes but not one single blade of grass moved. I quickly turned around and let out a scream. Right in front of me was a little purple alien with three hands and one eye. I thought he was going to kill me so I closed my eyes. "H-H-Hi". Those words didn't come out of my mouth, I thought to myself. I opened my eyes and the alien was smiling. Then he said "What is pollution?" I thought to myself, "what a random question to ask." The alien did not seem dangerous so I decided to answer. I explained to him as simply as possible how pollution was when earth's water, air, or land became dirty. I told him how pollution affected the earth and the people who live on earth. I also told him how pollution is unfortunately caused by humans. The poor little alien was shocked. He understood that pollution was a horrible thing that destroyed nature. Pollution was harmful. I tried to explain it to him as clearly and simply as possible. Then the little alien said thank you and just disappeared. I stood there perplexed when a few seconds later I heard another giant BOOM! I never saw that little purple alien again. How weird!

Life without Computers

Modern life would be a completely different story without computers. Nowadays, people and companies are so dependent on the computer for everything. If we didn't have computers things would be a lot harder for us and take a lot more effort and time. Imagine having to write a ten page paper on any school subject. With computers we do all of our research online at any given moment. However, if computers failed to exist we would have to read through countless amount of books to find what we are looking for. Modern life would also be different without computers because there would be one less device of communication. We use computers to send e-mails and keep in touch with friends and families. If we didn't have computers then e-mails and online chatting rooms and networks would not exist. We would have to stick to sending letters through the mail all the time.
Computers allow us to write papers and correct grammar all at once. We can make charts on the computer and tables. Without computers modern life wouldn't have all these benefits. We wouldn't be able to type a paper for a class except on a typewriter. Our papers would come out with a lot more mistakes because there would be no spelling check. Last but certainly not least modern life would be a lot heavier. What I mean by this is that we carry computers around because some of them are portable. if we didn't have computers we might have to constantly carry around books and imagine carrying a typewriter!