Sunday, February 28, 2016

Weekly Blog #22- AcDec and Mentor Visit 4

Since Thursday, I was gone for the AcDec state competition in San Antonio! These 3 days of jam-packed studying were not easy, but it was worth the journey. This was my third year doing AcDec state, and I scored my personal highest. Although I did not achieve the awards that I had hoped, I can confirm that this was a memorable time in terms of team camaraderie and hard work. This year was especially tough for me as I had hoped that after a busy first semester, my schedule would clear up without orchestra rehearsals and college applications. However, I had assumed incorrectly as I encountered scholarship applications and greater plans for ISM. In the end, even with all the makeup work I need to finish, this journey was especially memorable because of the obstacles I overcame.

This past week, I also conducted my fourth mentor visit with Mr. Arellano. We discussed a couple of IC concepts and plans for Final Product. I will also probably tour the Raytheon plant next week, which I am very looking forward to doing!

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Weekly Blog #21- OW Speech and AcDec

On Friday morning, I gave my 20 minute speech about Original Work, SMART Goals, and reflections. The night before was particularly stressful because I had many important due dates throughout the week and was unable to dedicate sufficient time towards writing my speech and creating my presentation. In hindsight, though I missed out on a lot of sleep Thursday night, I am glad that I learned how to pull through difficult and time-pressed situations. I still regret not having spread out my work over the week, so hopefully this will be a lesson learned for the future. I also realized that I need to set my priorities straight, as I could have reduced the time I spent tutoring and dedicated that time towards AcDec and ISM.

Now that my speech and Original Work have been completed, my next important goal is coming up this week! AcDec State competition is in 5 days and I need to focus on studying and preparing for it. To prevent making the same mistakes in terms of preparation (where I would complete homework and immediate needs first, then be too sleepy to study effectively), I will prioritize AcDec by dedicating the first 2 hours I get home to studying. This will help me retain information better and be more confident entering San Antonio.

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Research Showcase Video

Original Work- Oscilloscope Lab

Mentor Visit 2


Mentor Visit 1

Weekly Blog #20- OW Speech

2/12 has finally passed and the three-day weekend has started! This week, I finished my Original Work and took all my measurements from the circuit my mentor helped assemble. Although this week's workload was heavier than usual, I can proudly say that in terms of planning ahead, I finally learned from past mistakes. Over the weekend, I finished my EOL (Evidence of Learning assessment) a week in advance and began the general outline/script for my Research Showcase video. On Wednesday, I finished recording the parts involving me on camera and speaking. I would only sleep until I had finished editing all of the video, complete with background music, sound adjustments, and smooth transitions. Finally, during class on Thursday, I made sure to use that time to finish my Final Product proposal, and at home, I completed my Original Work lab report. This was probably the first time I had thoroughly planned in advance and it was worth it. I'm glad I implemented my self-advice and could testify that it works.

Of course, I still need to work on my speech for Original Work, which is expected to last around 30 minutes. However, having experienced a much busier schedule this past week, I am not daunted for this presentation on Friday because I have so much to talk about in regards to my lab report. I am also pretty excited to integrate some interactive components into my presentation, since my circuit and oscilloscope lab involved a lot of hands-on experimentation.

**If you'd like to check out my RS video, it can be found under the "Videos" tab! Original Work can be found under "Research," and EOL and Mentor Visit assessments can be found under "Misc."

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Weekly Blog #19- Mentor Visit 2 and RS Video

This week, I went on my second mentor visit with Mr. Arellano. We solidified a complex circuit idea for Original Work and for the next mentor visit, we plan to assemble all the pieces together (the capacitor, diodes, and transformer) for measuring voltage. I received a fresh review over capacitors, MRIs, and transformers (as I had learned about them in AP Physics 2 last year), and received a better understanding of diodes and what the oscilloscope is capable of (for example, oscilloscopes can be used in industry to find the time delayed when measuring a signal). During this visit, we also discussed Final Product. I am pretty set on the IC case study and programming, where I'll try to attain an IC chip and learn how to program it. Although this does not have as large of a scope as I had hoped, it will significantly benefit me in my knowledge and experience with ICs.

One thing I really need to think through is my Research Showcase video. As 2/12 approaches (due date for Original Work, EOL 4, product proposal, calendar rough draft, and my Research Showcase video), I will try to finish my "storyboard" for the video by tonight- what to say and when, what to film during certain times, etc. I think the last time I made a video for a project was 9th grade, so this assignment sounds pretty intimidating but fun at the same time, given the freedom and lack of requirements.