Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Reading Log #2

Title: Bottle Creek Blues
Author: Sam Hunt
Type: Poem
Personal response:

This poem is about the amount of pollution in a town that is ruining the environment and killing people that live there. Unfortunatly instead of the town doing something about the problem, they protest about the issue but never take any action towards pollution.

I found this poem very interesting because even though Hunt did not state the problem in the poem, he used other words to describe the issue using language tachniques e.g. "". By using a range of language techniques I could get a glimpse of the picture that Hunt was trying to paint.

I think that the town should take action and look after the environment by picking rubbish and cleaning their beaches. By doing this, people can enjoy the sandy beachs instead of the rubbish covering the sand and getting hurt from cracked bottles being washed up from the shore. Another dissapointing news is the pollution in the air that is suffocating the animals like birds, which cause the heavy air to move the toxic gas towards a town that is close by.

Reading Log#5

Title: Kashin’s health issues too much to bear
Author: Vaimoana Tapaleao
Type: Article
Date finished: Tuesday 25th August 2009
Reading response:
This article is about a memorable elephant in the zoo that passed away at the age of 40 yesterday (24th August 2009). Kashin was a very inspiring female elephant who encouraged many young children to save and increase the marketing rate in the ASB banks around New Zealand. The zoo will be closing for the day to respect and remember the memories of Kashin. Even the ASB marketing manager Paul Gleeson could remember the day Kashin flew from Asia to New Zealand, worried about his elephant as the pilot was performing a “crash landing”.

I think that the upsetting news of a well known elephant in New Zealand, will affect many children especially past and present Auckland zoo keepers who have looked after Kashin. I agree with this because as Kashin has been exposed to the public of being an inspiration to young New Zealand children. Elephants have been the star attraction of the Auckland zoo in the past 80 years.

I found this article very interesting because Kashin was a very inspirational elephant, that most children in Auckland visit her and do different activities e.g. riding or walking with her. But now that Kashin is gone, the auckland zoo director has planned to invite a herd of elephants from asia but finding it difficult to find money during the recesion.

Reading Log#1

Personal Response#1
Title: The life and times of Gracie Faltrain
Author: Cath Crowley
Type: Novel
Date finished: 12th January 2009
Personal Response:
This novel is about a teenage girl, Gracie Faltrain who tries to keep in track of her soccer games, school work, exams and her personal life. But as she focuses on her soccer tournament, she loses her interest in school work making it difficult for her to pass her exams, and as she concentrates more on her personal life she starts to lose her focus on her soccer skills. In the end she gets everything sorted out by falling for her soccer team captain, Martin, passing her exams and taking part in the soccer tournament.

While I was reading this novel, I learnt that you can accomplish your goals if you just set your mind towards them. By doing this there are certain subjects that are needed to be balanced to complete your goals. For example in the novel, Gracie had to extend her timetable so that her soccer training and school work had approximately the same amount of time, so she could still focus on her soccer tournament without getting pulled out from her lack of concentration in her school work.

I found this novel very interesting and enjoyable to read because it had other characters opinion on how to resolve problems. For example when Gracie lost her concentration in her games, she was thinking of the guy she liked who was watching her from the crowd. Him watching her made Gracie nervous and fumble over the ball releasing the ball to the opposing team. After the match, her team could not take anymore of her selfishness on the field (not passing the ball to her team), so they wrote their feelings in the novel accusing Gracie of being selfish and thinking that she is the star of the team.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Reading Response

Reading Log#3

Title: Of Mice and Men
Author: John Steinbeck
Type: Novel
Date finished: 24th March 2009
Personal Response:
This novel is about two cousins who live during the recession and work in a barn, to get enough money to buy their American Dream. Their American dream was to own, “…the fatta the land…” and look after the animals such as rabbits. Lennie, who is mentally challenged gets excited about the idea of patting soft thingsthat include “…tending em’ rabbits” .While George looks after him as a big brother, trying to keep him away from doing any harm. But as everyone in the barn gets used to George and Lennie, Lennie accidentally murders Curley’s (boss’s son) wife running away from the incident. But the thought of Lennie getting tortured by Curley made George think of a decision that would be the last thing on his mind. So George kills Lennie, keeping everyone in the barn safe and Lennie from the serious consequences.

An important character in the novel is George Milton, because he made a difficult decision to save his close cousin. This meant murdering Lennie so that he does not face the consequences by Curley or rot to death in jail. Another reason why he kills Lennie is to keep everyone safe in the barn. Even though this was a tragic decision, this affected George very badly. Since the two cousins have known each other ever since their childhood years. Another reason why George is an important character is because he treats Lennie as a little brother, even though Lennie is a grown man and also larger then George. This made George a caring thoughtful character who would keep Lennie safe from trouble. For example when Lennie and George were working at a different barn, Lennie liked to feel soft things so he reached out to a lady wearing a red silk dress, and the lady panicked screaming and reporting to the officer for abuse. The whole barn went looking for Lennie but luckily the two cousins escaped safely.

I found this book interesting because George made an important decision towards the end of the novel, since Lennie and George had a close relationship ever since they were children. At first I did not understand why George killed Lennie because he was known and described as a big brother towards Lennie. But as we started to study the novel, I realised that George killed Lennie for the right reasons in his eyes. The reason why George murdered Lennie was because he did not want to watch Lennie suffer through the consequences that was prescribed by Curley, or have Lennie cause more problems in future if they both escaped.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

The Mean Creek Essay #1

An important idea in the film Mean Creek directed by Jacob Aaron is bullying. This idea is conveyed through the verbal features of the dialogue used by George, and the visual techniques with the camera angles using a low angle. Through the use of these techniques we are able to understand the ideas much more clearly.

Bullying is an important idea in the film because this tells us how bullies can react to a situation, by handling them physically with their fists or false languages instead of talking and working through it. Gorege was described as the bully and expected that he could handle his problem physically with false languages, this made his problem even bigger than before by his victim, Sam who was convinced by Rocky (brother) to get back at him with a prank, "You know, if we hurt him, we'd be just as bad as him"(During Sam and Rocky's talk after school). "We were planning on stripping him butt naked, and swimming in the river, then leaving him to go home with no clothes on".In the quote Sam explains the prank to Millie to play on George to get back for beating him up in the past, by doing this Sam thought that the prank would make him feel better and superior, when instead it went all wrong to George's death.

The first technique that helps the viewer to understand the idea of bullying is through the verbal techniques of the dialogue used by George. In the film George uses false language and a loud tone of voice to get his message through his victims head. "I TOLD YOU NOT TO TOUCH MY ******* CAMERA! (As George was attacking Sam during school)...HIS DADDY SPLATTERED HIS BRAINS! ALL OVER THE WALL! HIS DADDY SPLATTERED HIS BRAINS! ALL OVER THE WALL!(During the boat trip yelling at Marty)". These quotes explain that George is an aggressive bully who will do anything in his will to get back at his victims, and to leave the message of never messing with him through the use of the dialogue in the film.

The second technique that helps the viewer to understand the theme of bullying is the use of the visual techniques by the camera angles with a low angle. In the film George is captured in a low angle to show that he is the bigger person in the shot. During the film when George was yelling at Marty about his father, a low angle of George showed that he was evil and taller that the camera had to change its angle, to point up and look at George's face. This angle describes George's features of when he gets angry and to place the audience in the movie where it looks like we're the victims of George too.

Both verbal and visual techniques help to convey the idea of bullying, but the best way to introduce another idea much more clearly to identify is the visual features of a close up birds eye view used to carry the idea of being bullied. This is one of the important ideas of being a victim in the film because it shows how victims are affected when they are being bullied. In the film while George attacked Sam for touching his camera, a close-up bird’s eye view was captured facing Sam looking down while George was now strangling him around his neck. This shot explains how Sam was affected by physically getting injured with a black eye, and when watching the scene the close-up birds eye view made Sam look much smaller and helpless than George.

In conclusion an important idea in the film Mean Creek directed by Jacob Aaron is bullying. This idea is an important idea in the film, because it introduces the negative sides of how bullies deal with there problems that it can physically and emotionally effect their victims. Through the use of the verbal and visual technique that has been shown in the film, it has made it easier and clearer to understand why the director uses certain shots to explain more about the scenes.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Should the drinking age rise to 21?

I firmly agree with rising the drinking age to 21, because many 18 and 19 year olds have been exposed to the toxic drink, that it has affected their health mentally, emotionally and physically. When drinking alcohol, the drink starts to affect their human organs e.g. liver, the brain, even when drinking and driving. However one drink could prevent diseases like coronary heart disease, but once you have a drink this toxic drink can easily become addictive.

Alcohol at 18 and 19 years of age can affect human organs, when a large amount has been consumed. Sources say that at 18 or 19 years old, the body is still developing to protect you from particular illnesses. One of the common organs that can be affected quickly is the liver. The liver stores sugar (glucose) for the body, and breaks down all the fat and protein from the food in the stomach. When the liver is affected by a large amount of alcohol consumed, one of the conditions is called cirrhosis. Cirrhosis is a disease in the liver, which causes bruises and internal bleeding. If the bleeding is not stopped in time, this could cause death. But if it is stopped in time, there is a slight chance that you may have a liver transplant.

Secondly the toxic drink can affect young nervous system, because the brain is also developing at this age. Our brain is one of the important organs from the human body, because it sends messages to move different parts of the body e.g. lifting your right hand up. When a large amount of alcohol has been consumed, the drink starts to affect our brains by removing previous memories, known as a black out. The toxic drink also effects our emotions where the brain cannot control them. But there is a slight chance that part of the brain that can be damaged, for a long period of time depending on how much is consumed.

Thirdly most of the car crashes caused, is by young drivers who have been drinking and driving. When the brain is not funtioning properly by the toxic drink, the brain will shut down in a matter of time while driving. This could mean loosing your vision, concerntration, coordination and crashing into objects or people. This could causing physical or menatl injuries e.g. broken bones or brain damage. Statistics show that over 1900 deaths were caused from drinking and driving.

However alcohol can prevent particular diseases from occurring. Coronary heart disease is a common disease in New Zealand, Russia, Australia and other countries. This disease is when the coronary circulation has failed; leaving narrow blood vessels to the heart with the blood flow decreasing. But this disease is only preventable if a small amount of alcohol is consumed. Another disadvantage of drinking at the age of 18 and 19, is how it affects family members by putting them through the stress of your health, and violence in New Zealand.

In conclusion I firmly agree with rising the drinking age to 21, because of the amount of harmful effects and activities caused by the toxic drink, on 19 and 18 year olds. Alcohol can ruin and effect human organs mentally, emotionally and physically, that it worries many family members. Not to mention that it has a major impact on our health that could affect the liver and brain. However there is a small possibility that diseases like coronary heart disease, can be preventable. But still a huge risk of drinkers at the age of 18 and 19 to put there life on the line.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Social network such as Facebook and Bebo are endangering New Zealand teenagers

I firmly go against, social networks are endangering New Zealand teenagers, because it is a faster and quicker way to socialise with online friends or family, and it entertainments users to personalise their own pages e.g.Bebo and Face book. However, there are problems and issues that can physically, and metally effect New Zealand teenagers e.g. Cyber-bullying . Cyber bullying, has grown in New Zealnd for years nows. Although there are solutions, that have been developed around the world that can stop this issue from occuring.

Bebo is one of the examples, where you basically make decisions of leaving a comment, or personally sending messages directly to that person. This social network, has been online eversince 2006, and the amount of members that have joined, has accelerated over the years. Bebo is also a handy socialising net, because members, don't have to leave there comfort zones, to meet others, instead of managing to socialise with other members, when ever and wherever they are. Although, socialising with others on a phone card, can be useful, but sometimes telephones play up, and make it difficult to talk to others, and it also costs more money than socialising on the net, where you could write a letter, add pictures and send.

Facebook is another example, of socialising with others online without having to translate words you don't know. Changing the subtitles could help, because facebook is available to anyone on different countries e.g. Hong Kong-Chinese, Spain- Spanish and Norwegian - Nynorsk etc. Facebook can also send messages, pictures, and others that can also be displayed on your page(s). This socialising network can keep users up to date, with the latest news headlines around the world. Facebook has been launced from 2004 and is still famous for it's managing network. I firmly go against social networks are endangering New Zealand teenagers, because these are one of the places, where people can socialise and be entertained.

However, there are issues that have been occuring on the net, cyberbullying has been growing in New Zealand that has lead to commiting suicide. Although ther are advantages that have been made to keep teenagers safe on the net. Personalising your page, is one thing, where only your friends can see your page or comment on your page etc. Another is whenever you are harrased by others, you could click spam and that blocks that user from going on your page.

In conclusion, I firmly go against social networks are endangering teenagers, because this is one of the quickest way and fastest to contact and socialise with others. Even though there are issues that worry teenagers, there are many solutions to this problem, that has been made stronger to keep New Zealand teenagers cyber safe.

Of Mice and Men- Second essay

Explain an idea or theme that interests you and explain what you think about it.

In the novel Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck, George and Lennie share an important theme, which introduce the idea of their friendship. I think that, what George did, took lots of courage and guts to kill Lennie, because he was trying to keep Lennie safe.

The theme of friendship, between George and Lennie interests me, because they both have different skills and abilities, that they get along with each other and create a strong friendship. George was described as “…small and restless eyes and sharp…strong hands slender arms, a thin and bony nose…”, and is also quick on his feet, when ever trouble steps near himself and Lennie. However, Lennie was seen as an exact opposite as George, “…large pale eyes, with wide sloping shoulders…”. Including his sickness, with mentally challenged disorder where he stutters, and tends to forget what people say, apart from George.

An idea that interests me, was why George killed Lennie? As I read and studied the end of the text, my level of interest increased. “The crash of the shot rolled up the hills and rolled down again. Lennie jarred, and then settled slowly forward to the sand” .At first I was really sad and angry, but then when I thought about it more, I saw it as a positive thing, because George killed Lennie, to protect him from the alarming things, that Curley was going to do. But as Curley found out about his dead wife, he was furious and knew straight away who done it, “…I’ll kill the big son-of-a-bitch myself. I’ll shoot’im in the guts…” .

I think the theme and idea show, that George and Lennie have a strong bond between each other, that they trust and respect each other. “…George won’t do nothing like that. I’ve knew George since- I forgot when- and he ain’t never raised his han’ to me with a stick. He’s nice…”, when Lennie described George to Stable Buck. George also shares his friendship with Lennie, by talking to Lennie and giving instructions to Lennie, for a back up. “…if you jus’ happen to get in trouble like you always done before, I want you to come right here an’ hide in the brush.”

In Conclusion, the novel Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck, George and Lennie share a very strong bond and friendship, which is the main theme and idea in the novel. George took the courage of shooting Lennie to death, because he did not want Lennie to suffer, from the amount of torment by Curley or in prison.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Of Mice and Men- First Essay

In the Novel Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck, shows one of the important characters that is involved and conveys the theme, and a heart throbbing scene. Curley’s wife is one of the important characters, because her experiences in the novel make the story more entertaining.

Curleys’s wife was described as a, “purty” and fashionable young woman who married the bosses’ son at the ranch. “She had full, rouged lips and wide spaced eyes, heavily made up. Her hair hung in little rolled clusters, like sausages. She wore a cotton house dress and red mules, on the insteps of which were little bouquets of red ostrich feathers…Married two weeks ago and got the eye”. Curly’s wife was very defensive over herself, sometimes she would yell with threats at the same time. “You know what I can do to you if you open your trap... Well you keep your place then, Nigger. I could get you strung up on a tree so easy it ain’t funny”. But most of all, she would run around the ranch with excuses, when she’s actually looking for a conversation. “I’m looking for Curley… you’re the new fellas that just come ain’t ya... All the guys got a horseshoe tenement goin on’y about four o’clock. None of them guys is goin’ to live the tenement. Why can’t I talk to you?”

Curley’s wife is important in the scenes, because she shows her true identity and American dream, to Lennie with many opinions and regrets. “... Coulda been in the movies, an had nice clothes… coulda sat in them big hotels, an’ had pitchers took of me… when they had them previews I coulda went to them, an spoke on the radio…”. But when she took a step to far in trying to comfort Lennie, Curley’s wife didn’t live her dream or get near it. “When I’m doin my hair sometimes I jus’ set an’ stroke it’ cause it’s so soft… here-feel right here”. As Curley’s wife let Lennie stroke her hair, he started to mess it up and she began to panic. Lennie quickly wrapped his strong hands around her mouth and nose, but Curley’s wife wouldn’t stop squirming and yelling. “Let go…You let go!”, but Lennie held on so he wouldn’t get into trouble from George. “…And she continued to struggle, and her eyes were wild with terror. He shook her then he was angry… and he shook her (again), and her body flopped like a fish. And then she was still, for Lennie had broken her neck.”

Curly’s wife is also important in the novel, because she introduces the theme of loneliness around the ranch. When she starts a conversation with Lennie in the barn, she admits her confessions and regrets about her present life. “… Why can’t I talk to you? I never get to talk to nobody. I get awfully lonely… Well I ain’t told this to nobody before. Maybe I ought’n to. I don’t like Curley. He ain’t a nice fella.” But the rumours around the ranch, ruin her chances of having friends, or someone to talk to, apart from Curley. “Know what I think… Well I think Curly’s married… a tart”. But the workers didn’t meet her; instead, they just looked at her appearance and lifestyle and judged her from there.

In conclusion the novel Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck holds an important character that was involved in a judgemental theme and dreadful scene. Curley’s wife was very defensive and lonely, but she had many regrets, that put her in a place where she dreamt of, that came to soon.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Should the internet be banned?

Around the world, people use the internet for many tasks that include research, communication and entertainment. Others go against the web due to the amount of identity theft and other problems on the net. However there are solutions and tips that can stop identity theft from occurring. This is why I firmly disagree and go against the internet should be banned.

Firstly, I firmly go against the internet should be banned because many people worldwide use the internet for tasks that need research. Books are useful, but I personally think that the web provides more information that allows more than 100 users to log on to the same webpage at the same time. One of these sites that can help our research is an online encyclopaedia called Wikipedia (www.wikipedia.org). Wikipedia was found in 2001 by Jimmy Wales & Larry Sanger. This site allows members to edit and provide useful facts about one subject e.g. Maori history etc. Another webpage that can be helpful to search for information is yahoo answers (www.answers.yahoo.com). Yahooanswers is where you can ask any questions an recieve answers from users, this site was released in 2005 by yahoo. Not only can you ask questions but you could also edit an online person where you create your own style by choosing what your person should look and wear.

Secondly I firmly go against the internet should be banned because it’s a cheaper and faster way to communicate with others worldwide. Communication can mean keeping in touch and also giving and receiving updates from each other. Hotmail (www.hotmail.com) is one of the examples for emailing where you can send messages to other members that have the same or different email website. This site was found in 1996 by Jack Smith and Sabeer Bhatia. Another site that uses communication is bebo (www.bebo.com), which was released in 2005 by Michael Birch & Xochi Birch. Bebo stands for “Blog early blog afternoon” which requires members to personalise their page with pictures, music, bands and other applications. But most of all this site also sends email and comments to friends or family anywhere.

Thirdly, I firmly go against the internet should be banned because most sites are created to entertain members and users. Entertainment may require downloading music or watching free videos without downloading. Limewire is one of the examples of downloading free music or videos from other members and also store, and play after the downloading is over. This site was found in 2000 by the company Lime Wire LLC and is available in 31 languages. Another website that can entertain people without downloading is Youtube (www.youtube.com). Youtube was released in 2005 by Steve Chen, Chad Hurley and Jawed Karim, this site provides videos you can only watch on the net. Members of youtube can provide videos of anything that is acceptable.

Although identity theft has been growing over the years and is becoming an online put down. This is when someone steals other people’s identity online in order to steal money or other tasks that can lead to trouble. However there are solutions and tips to this fraud. First of all, keep your password secret that no one will know or find out. Secondly, never put your information about your backup question when you forget your password on your page. Thirdly, make sure no one is watching behind your back when typing in your password, and Lastly, if you are really worried about the fraud and nothing has made you feel safe you could download spyware doctor (www.pctool.com/spyware-doctor), where the site deletes users that are watching your every move you take online.

In Conclusion, even though the amount of identity theft has been accelarating on the web. There are solutions and web sites that can help. Worldwide people use the internet for many tasks that require research, communication and entertainment. But if we banned the internet now how can we contact more than 10 people in just minutes. Or have fun with many games to play online instead of watching boring ads on TV. Or how can 100 people use the same source at the same time at the same place. This is why I disagree and firmly go against the internet should be banned.