Sunday, 24 February 2013

Quote time!


Here Are some Great Quotes. Most of them Are by famous authors.


To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people exist, that is all.
- Oscar Wilde

Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.
- Oscar Wilde

It is our choices, Harry, that show us who we truly are, far more than our abilities.
- J. K. Rowling

Life’s disappointments are harder to take when you don’t know any swear words.
- Bill Wattersonnd

Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another: "What! You too? I thought I was the only one."
- C. S. Lewis

Just because you have the emotional range of a teaspoon doesn't mean we all have.
- J. K. Rowling

You can't start the next chapter of your life if you keep re-reading the last one.
- Unknown Author

To die will be an awfully big adventure.
- J. M. Barrie

Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass, it's about learning to dance in the rain.
- Vivian Greene

Do not go where the path may lead: go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.
- Ralph Waldo Emerson

If you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.
- Albert Einstein

A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new.
- Albert Einstein

It takes much bravery to stand up to our enemies but we need as much bravery to stand up to our friends.
- J.K.Rowling

A ship in harbor is safe, but that is not what ships are built for.
- William Shedd

When the first baby laughed for the first time, the laugh broke into a thousand pieces and they all went skipping about, and that was the beginning of fairies.
- J.M.Barrie

Wit beyond measure is a man's greatest treasure.
- J. K. Rowling

It does not do to dwell on dreams and forget to live.
- J. K. Rowling

Why join the navy if you can be a pirate?
- Steve Jobs

 A real friend is one who walks in when the rest of the world walks out.
- Walter Winchell

Life is too deep for words, so don't try to describe it, just live it.
- C. S. Lewis

To the well organized mind, death is but the next great adventure.
- J.K.Rowling

First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.
- Gandhi

I didn't say it was going to be easy. I just said it was going to be worth it.
- Art Williams

Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former.
- Albert Einstein

Do not take life too seriously. You will never get out of it alive. 
Elbert Hubbarb

In the end it’s not the years in your life that count, it’s the life in your years that count. 
  • Abraham Lincoln

If I would have followed the rules, I would have not achieved all I have done.
- Marylin Monroe

Don’t cry because it’s over. Smile because it happened. 
- DR. Seuss

Write drunk; edit sober.
-Ernest Hemingway

You’ll miss all the best things if you keep your eyes shut.
- DR. Seuss

Elizabeth : There will come a time, a moment, when you will have the chance to do the right thing.
Jack Sparrow: I love those moments. I like to wave at them as they pass by.
-Pirates of the Caribbean 3

You may kill me but you may never insult me.
- Captain Jack Sparrow

There’s more to life than books, you know, but not much more.
-Anonymous

Oh my! You have gone mad! You’re absolutely bonkers! But let me tell you a secret; all the best people are.
-Lewis Carroll, Alice’s adventures in Wonderland

When I am sad, I stop being sad and be awesome instead.
-Neil Patrick Harris

Hakuna Matata
-The Lion King

Oh, bloody hell, here we go again.
-Ronald Weasley, Harry Potter 7

True courage is standing up to and pursuing your dreams, even if everyone else says it’s impossible.
-Anonymous

Sometimes the questions are complicated, but the answers are simple.
-DR. Seuss

Why fit in when you were born to stand out?
- DR. Seuss

What is the What?

Hi everyone. This blog post is about my current state in reading What is The What, by Dave Eggers.

I started reading this book in New Zealand towards the end of the winter break. I got to chapter two, and didn't like it so far. In the first two chapters, Valentino is being robbed in his home in Atlanta. And to be honest, those first two chapters gave me a very VERY bad impression of the book. For every other line, the 'F' word had to be squeezed into dialogue. I thought, 'What is going on with all this swearing? Oh my life, get a MOVE on!' So that was pretty boring and I didn't open the book up again until we were asked to in english class.

After a couple more chapters, things began to get more interesting. We were being transported back in time to Sudan, during the civil war. As I continued to read, I realized the book isn't that bad after all. I'm on page 306, and Valentino's experiences with the lost boys are beginning to come out more, and now interesting things are given a bigger role in the story. There was just this one chapter where Valentino/ Eggers starts talking about his adaptation to America. That was tedious.

The historic aspect of the book is really interesting, sad, and action-packed. The wording of the book isn't difficult at all, it's just the terrible things that happened to Sudan and its people along the way. I find the way Eggers plays with time, jumping back and forth in time, is a master skill. I like his style- its interesting, and his words flow smoothly through time transitions.

Wednesday, 6 February 2013

The Black Stallion

Published originally in 1941, this book is about a young boy, Alec Ramsay who finds a wild black stallion at a small Arabian port on the Red Sea. The animal is wild, and uncontrollable. Between the black stallion and young boy, a strange understanding grew that you lead them through untold dangers as they journeyed to America. On their journey, a terrible storm occurs, and Alec is tossed overboard the ship he is traveling on. The stallion escapes out of his enclosure as the ship sinks. Alec is stranded on a deserted island alone with the stallion, which actually saves him from drowning. 

 Alec could never understand that his adventures with the black stallion would capture the interest of an entire nation. After a long time on the island, Alec befriends the wild stallion. The people in Arabia said that the beast could never be tamed, but they were half wrong. Alec manages to convince the Stallion to let  him ride him. After a few fails (Over a period of days), Alec manages. 
But soon they are rescued and taken back to civilization in America. But there are national horse- races going on in a couple month's time. Can Alec participate, with his born-to-run stallion, against the fastest horses that have ever participated, and not ruin his and the stallion's reputation?

Again, like the books 'The Giver (Lois Lowry)' and 'A Journey to the Centre of the Earth', this classic tale is a MUST read. Walter Farley captures a sense of unimaginable and unexpected bond of trust and friendship between horse and boy, and a daring sense of adventure. This book deserves a million people's applause, and I give it 10/10 golden stars.

If you haven't read it and like classics, please, do yourself a favor and get your hands on this book. I also recommend it to people aged 11- 99 and if you have read 'Black Beauty (Anna Sewell)' and liked it, this is a great book for you to read.

This book was recommended to me by my Grade 7 english teacher, Mr. Starzynski, and to him I owe him an even greater 'thank you very much' than what I gave him when I returned his copy of the book. He completed my life of classical literature. Thank you so much!

This is an AMAZING book! Please leave comments about your thoughts!





Journey To the Centre of the Earth

This is a book I read some time ago in september. I decided to do a book review because it is NOTHING at all like the 2008 movie. If you haven't read it yet, it is a MUST READ. The intrepid Professor Liedenbrock embarks upon the strangest expedition of the nineteenth century: a journey down an extinct Icelandic volcano to the Earth's very core. In his quest to penetrate the planet's primordial secrets, the geologist--together with his terrified nephew Axel and their committed guide, Hans - discovers an astonishing subterranean menagerie of prehistoric proportions. It is a stunning tale of the impossible. Jules Verene has a great imagination, especially because he live so long ago. Back then they didn't have all of the technology we have now, and to imagine something so impossible at that time is amazing.  Verne's imaginative tale is at once the ultimate science fiction adventure and a reflection on the perfectibility of human understanding and the psychology of the adventurer.

I gave this classic a 5/5 because it is so realistically impossible, the art of it is so adventurous. If you have seen the movie, and liked it, I suggest you check out the original version. Or if you haven't read or watched A Journey to the Centre of the Earth, start with the book. It's very interesting when you compare them.

Here are some of the differences:
The guide is not a woman
There is not as much romance involved in the book than in the film
Shawn is called Axel in the book
Professor Trevor is Professor Leidenbrock in the book
There's no modern slang in the book
In the book Axel becomes unconscious when he hits his head on a rock- in the movie he never gets severely unconscious although there is one part during the storm....

Ok, enough of that. So, as I was saying, it is a must read. If you don't like classics, try it out anyways. If it doesn't work out, then read the simplified, modern version (be warned, the classic is SO much better), and if THAT doesn't work out, read the comic. And if that doesn't work, WATCH THE MOVIE, like it, and be unhappy that you didn't read it first.

Monday, 4 February 2013

The Giver by Lois Lowry


Hi. I read a book called 'The Giver' by Lois Lowry. It's an amazing story, but really sad. If you haven't read it yet, I suggest you go and sign it out from the library. Here's a short review I did.


The Giver, by Lois Lowry is a sad and moving book that revolves around a twelve- year old boy called Jonas. The world where Jonas lives in is perfect. Everyone is equal, there is no color, there are no animals... Jonas is happy with the community until a few weeks after the ceremony of the twelves. There he is chosen as the community’s receiver. Jonas now goes to work at the goes to see a wise old man known as the Giver’s office. The Giver is an old man with pale eyes who knows much more than anyone else in the community. The Giver feeds Jonas’ memory with new memories from a long time ago, memories of animals, of pain, hunger, happiness, war, snow, things that Jonas’ has never been in the risk or zone of experiencing and feeling these things. But most important, the Giver gives him the memory of color. But Jonas’ attitude towards the community changes as the Giver opens Jonas’ eyes and shows him the truth of the release.

The release is a very shocking event that occurs when twins are born and the elderly suffer from illness. What happens when Jonas sees the release is Jonas’ father injects a needle into the forehead of the weaker twin. Almost instantly the baby’s body goes still as the fluid intended to kill the weakling flows around its blood. Then the body is put into a cardboard box and thrown down the rubbish chute. There is no doubt that this would make someone go mad with rage, especially if it was your own father- your own father, a murderer. And this was no exception with Jonas. Sad and shocked and bewildered, “Jonas felt a ripping sensation inside himself, the feeling of terrible pain clawing its way forward to emerge in a cry.” (Lowry, p. 151) So it was that Jonas’ attitude towards his family, his community, changed. “‘I won’t! I won’t go home! You can’t make me!’ Jonas sobbed and pounded the bed with his fists.” (Lowry, p. 152) 

This is what happens in the ceremony of the twelves. Jonas’s life changes when he is appointed as a receiver during the ceremony of the twelves. It is a special job, and there is only one receiver in the community at a time. Jonas knows his life will never be the same again. “Jonas learned, through the memories, the names of colors; and now he began to see them all, in his ordinary life (though he knew it was ordinary no longer, and would never be again). ” (Lowry, p. 97) Basically during the ceremony of the twelves you are given a job that the community decides will be best for you. 




I give this book 5/5 stars because it's a really moving book that is well written. I recommend this book to people of ages 10 and above because soe parts really reflect dictatorship, control, and the real world in some cases. 

Sunday, 3 February 2013

Blogging


Blogging is a useful component in the english classroom. It is useful because it helps students free-write and share their ideas in ways online that they might not want to in person or in front of their peers. Online, the writer on a blog can often pass as anonymous. Blogging also helps to give you a voice online, and to share your thoughts across the web, to a partially anonymous audience on the web. Blogging also helps you to 'excersise your creativity' (Search Engine Journal, 7 reasons why blogging is still important). Creativity is always and important factor in the english classroom when it comes to writing and the use of descriptive language. Blogging also encourages students to consistently write something a least once a week. It helps bring out the uniqueness of the world more now than ever, with digital media increasing and developing all over the globe. ' It brings ideas out to the public - a lot of people have some pretty unique perspectives. Now, we all get a chance to hear those ideas and explore them.' (Six Pixels of Separation- the Blog). Blogging is, after all something important in the english classroom that encourages students to share what they think, and to involve media into the classroom.

Saturday, 2 February 2013

How to Write About Germany



How to Write About Germany
______________________________________________________________

Feb 2, 2013

How to Write About Germany 

Always use the words 'Germany', 'Beer' or 'Expensive cars' or 'Hitler' in your title. Subtitles may include words like 'Nazi', 'Second world war', 'Mercedes', 'BMW', 'Porsche', 'Beer Festival', 'Sausage', 'Pretzel' or 'Economy crisis'. Another useful word is 'Football'. Also make sure to note that 'People' means Germans who might not be pure German, whereas 'The People' means crazy drunkards who race each other on the highway and crash their expensive cars.

On the front cover of your book always have a picture of a demented, destroyed Porsche or Mercedes, or a guy with a scraggly red beard with silvery bits in it tap- dancing, dressed in breeches with a German flag cape around his shoulders. Someone who looks like the German version of Heidi's grandfather. And also make sure he's holding a beer that's got foam spilling over the side. And holding a white sausage dipped in mustard on a stick, or a half- burnt pretzel. Never put only a beer as your front cover. That means nothing.

When you write, that is, in the text, always treat Germany as if it were the only place on earth with no speed limits on highways. Germany is a place that is either cold and snowy that is filled with short fat people who have beards or plaits tied up with ribbons and look like Santa and Ms. Claus. And who eat Pretzels and sausages all the time. Or, it's hot and rainy and full of tall lanky people who are obsessed with football and who go around all the time wearing a German flag or a german t- shirt. People who sit all day in front of the TV watching football and who only go out to watch a live match of football or to go to a beer festival to get drunk. Make sure you don't go too far with that, because otherwise your book won't sell. Go brief on that and keep your text mainly focused on the drunk young adults who race each other on the longest racing track in the world. Oh, and also include that people go to watch them race just so they can laugh when the youngsters ruin their Mercedes or Porsches at the very first meander.

Keep the statistics simple. Germany is in Europe, and has 82 million people who are too busy attending a football match, a beer festival, or wealthy people currently mourning over their ruined car (they spent a fortune on) to ever bother reading your book.

Make sure you show that Germans also have a heart for engineering, especially in the southern part. It's like their hearts are actually made out of tools and nuts and bolts. And remember to particularly press on their liking for food and alcohol. They eat things no other normal humans eat. Don't mention bread, and when you mention alcohol, focus on overdoing it, and saying Germans consistently are trying to make themselves drunk. Say they eat over- salted butter pretzels with additional butter on top, home- made sausages (who eats home- made sausage?) and hame with the fat still on top. Don't mention fruit either. Also write that the most commonly eaten sausage in Germany is called the Weisswurst, that is eaten coated with yellow mustard after you peel the skin off. 

The language aspects of Germany are important to put in. Write that sentences in German always look normal until you get to the first noun, which is always written in capitals. Which means you always have to go back and check wether there was a full stop or other end- sentence punctuation mark you might have missed out on.

You'll also need a short chapter on music. To get your reader hooked, put in the most famous rock stars, Johann Sebastian Bach and Ludwig Van Beethoven. Include some of their most famous pieces and the music sheets if you can find them somewhere on the internet for free. Or else your reader might just skip that part because they're not interested about music.

Always end your book with Angela Merkel saying something about peace and umbrellas. Because it's important.