Sunday, April 6, 2014

Presentation Topic

Last Friday, we had to finalize what we are going to talk about in our presentations. I have decided that I am going to talk about the importance of cultures and languages in today's world. First, I am going to start off small. I am going to talk about how this relates to me in general. My experiences growing up in a bilingual and multicultural household. During this part, I am also going to include how my worldly experiences have shaped who I am. After that, I am going to connect it to my 20 Time project. Finally, I am going to broaden my idea to show how it effects every one on Earth. This weekend I started a folder on my computer to put in photos and papers that I will use in my powerpoint. My goal is still to have a rough draft done by the end of spring break. As the days go by, I am getting more and more excited to present. It is going to be challenging to talk in a huge auditorium, but I am up for the challenge. Once it is over, I think I will look back on that day with amazement. On the other hand, I am not sure yet how I feel about my community expanding the project to involve other schools. I think it will be great if other schools have the chance to do 20 Time projects. This gave me the chance to experience new things that I wanted to do. However, I do not want it to become too big that it won't be special anymore.


Saturday, March 22, 2014

TED videos/book

I only have a few weeks left before I need to know what I am going to talk about in my presentation. Yesterday, during 20 Time, I asked my teacher his opinion about my two ideas. He said they would both work. He also talked about combining the two into one big idea. This sounds like a great idea! This weekend I am going to figure out how I am going to fit both ideas into one. If it doesn't turn out well, I guess I will just stick with one. Last week, my teacher went to two conferences in Grand Rapids and California. He created a quote (see below) from my blog from two weeks ago. He ended up using it in his presentations. That wass CRAZY!!! After that happened, a bunch of people began tweeting it out. My 10 seconds of fame. During my free time, I have been reading a book about how to public speak from TED and watching TED videos. The book is very good so far. Whenever I watch people public speak, I  can now recognize if they have a strong connection with the audience. The way a person delivers their speech needs to grab the audience. Next week, I am going to start making a list of key ideas on my topics. That will be the outline to my speech.

"The biggest success stories are built on a 
foundation of multiple failures."

-Leonie L. 

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Deciding 1 or 2

After having a group discussion in class about what we liked and disliked about the project, I was happy to hear that we will only have to write one blog post every other week. Since we finished the projects, we did not really have a lot to write about. Although I will only have to write one blog every other week, it will need to include what I accomplished in those two weeks. This Friday I am going to ask my english teacher about his thoughts on what I should talk about in my presentation. This weekend I narrowed it down to two topics. I am still undecided on which way I should go. His input will help a lot in figuring out which one I should choose. Once I have my topic down, I am going to start writing up my speech. Although I will not be able to use it in my presentation, it helps when I write things down. For some reason, I can remember things better that way. It will help with practicing and memorizing when and where to say what. After that, I will start making a powerpoint about my project. This weekend I narrowed down my topics.

On a side note, I can't wait for SPRING to arrive!!! 

Saturday, March 1, 2014

20 Time Reviews

There are many things that I like about the 20 Time projects. My favorite part since the beginning was being given the opportunity to choose any project to work on for an entire year. At first, I thought this would be super easy. As the year progressed, the project got more challenging. This opened a whole new door in my creative mind. Since I started projects in 1st grade, I have never been able to do what I wanted to do. My teacher usually made up all the requirements. The projects usually had to do with books I have read, history I have studied, or complicated science experiments. This project was totally different. Although I have enjoyed the freedom of choosing a topic, it was very difficult to come up with what I wanted to accomplish in an entire year. One of the biggest influences during this was my teacher. He always kept my class motivated! He explained that it was acceptable if the project failed in the end. As an honors student, I do not hear that very often. Honors students always have so many expectations to live up to. It is assumed that we always have to succeed in everything we do. My teacher said it was ok to fail at things sometimes. We learn from our mistakes. The biggest success stories are built on a foundation of multiple failures. I learned a very good lesson. I will remember that throughout my life.

Although this project was exciting, there were some parts I did not really like. My least favorite thing about this project was blogging. Before this project, I had never blogged before. The one requirement that we did have was that we had to write a blog post every week. I understand how it is a great timeline of your project, but sometimes I had nothing to blog about. In a way, the blogging keeps you on track with your project and your teacher sees your progression. I would of rather not blogged about my project. I wish we would have received more time at the beginning to choose a topic.

If I could do the project over again, I would change my whole project. I wish I would have known earlier that we are participating in a TEDx Talk. In the beginning, I liked my camera idea. I thought it would last me the whole year. As time passed, it became boring for me to work on. Throughout my project, I came up with better ideas. I wish I could have changed to those projects. I am glad that my camera project failed in a way because that made me think of new designs.

In conclusion, I have really enjoyed the opportunity that this project has given me including the ups and downs.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Winter Break

My winter break went by super fast. I am not ready to go back to school yet. I think I need another week off. I basically took a week off of thinking or doing anything school related. Having this in mind I didn't do that much for my 20 Time Project. When I did have a couple minutes of free time, I did some more brainstorming of what I should talk about in my presentation. My idea of finding a cure for my father's disease is going to be a HUGE challenge. For now, I plan on working on that throughout my life. However, I came up with another idea over break. Thank goodness I can get a better grasp on this one. It will also have its road bumps. I will talk about the concept of that in my next blog. I first have to construct the letter that goes with it. If this truly turns out to work, I think I will talk about that in my presentation. At the moment, I have to condense my ideas into one. While many of my classmates might not have an idea yet, I have too many. In the next few weeks, I want to target the one I would like to talk about. I am super excited about the experience that my teacher has set up for us in June. My dad first introduced me to TED about four years ago. I have been watching their videos ever since. My dad frequently goes to the TEDx Conferences downtown. I will have more to talk about next weekend.

Friday, February 7, 2014


I do not have a lot of time to work on my 20 time project this weekend. I have a lot of tests and quizzes to study for. I will also be writing my Faust Legend for english class. So far, it has been challenging for me just to write the outline. I think the ideas that I have are very unique and interesting. Hopefully, it will turn out to be an excellent story. Since I do not have a lot of time this weekend, I plan on calling and meeting with some local ear doctors over mid-winter break. I am still not sure how this is going to work out. Some of the doctors might not have the time. I think I am going to talk about how my passion for curing this disease developed in my presentation. On the other hand, I came up with another idea of how I could talk about the importance of foreign languages. I am growing up in a house where three languages are spoken. My dad speaks English with me. My mom speaks mostly Swiss-German and some French with me. Although I can speak English and Swiss-German fluently, I can't read or write that well in German or French. That is where school comes in handy! I am taking German and French at school to improve those skills. Knowing more than one language opens a whole new world to people. It makes traveling to foreign countries a lot easier. Instead of carrying around a translation book, you can speak as if it were normal with French, German, Italian, etc people. It also prepares you for the future. You are able to broaden your job locations to include foreign countries. Although that would also be interesting to talk about, I plan on still talking about my dad's disease.

Sunday, February 2, 2014


This weekend I did some more research about Meniere's Disease. The most important part about solving something is understanding the basics first. This disease develops when fluid accumulates in the inner ear (labyrinth). Within the labyrinth, there are organs that control balance (the semicircular canals and otolithic organs). There are also hearing organs (cochlea). The buildup of fluid, endolymph, prevents signals from the inner ear going to the brain. This results in vertigo and hearing loss. That is what my father suffers from. I have this theory that the disease might be connected with the sodium potassium pump that is within each cell. It could also have a connection with operating motor vehicles. I am just basing my theories on personal experiences. I do not have sufficient evidence yet. One of the treatments for vertigo is salt restriction. My dad has to reduce his salt intake while taking diuretics (water pills). Last year, he was driving on the highway and eating a banana. He had one bite and had a vertigo attack. He lost total control of the car, so I had to quickly take control of the steering wheel. I moved the car to the right shoulder while he regained his balance. Bananas are a good source of potassium. Since he has to reduce his salt intake and had a reaction to bananas, I feel like it has to do with the sodium potassium pump. It could of just been a random attack. I plan on expanding my research next week by asking ear doctors what they know about this disease. Below is a picture of the inner ear.

  The labyrinth in relation to the ear