Category Archives: GCE

What’s Faith? – JM

February 22, 2013, by

This post is for the Who Am I? Course and it will be about a philosophy I made all on my own. The purpose of this piece is to show that through questioning what we already trust, we come to a better understanding in faith and belief. I am proud of the fact that I could come up with a good enough question to create this piece of work because I really enjoyed it. I learned more about who I am, what I feel faith is, and how anyone can have faith.

Please read the essay in the PDF link below! I hope you enjoy it.

Doubt Essay – final version

Time Machine – JM

February 11, 2013, by

This is a project named Time Machine and I am making this for the Who Am I Course. The purpose of this is to show you a moment in my life that has changed me into a different person. I am proud that I have been able to analyze my memory to see how it changed me. I learned who I am even better than I did before through this process. Read the Writing below to see how I changed through this memory. Also look at the Prezi all the way at the bottom to see what some of the things that occur in the memory looked like. Thanks!



This is a memory of an amazing experience I had because I am a Christian. I went to a really crazy Christian summer camp. I had gone to this summercamp on the advice of my grandfather. Before he passed away, he told me to live life to the fullest while I’m young, because it only gets crazier as we grow. Before I explain the rest of this memory I would like to state why this memory is important to me. When I left this camp, I never wanted to get chocolate on my skin ever again. Many other campers who went with me now feel the same (Hint hint: collective memory!). Despite this gross experience of mine, I had fun; I learned that to have fun, I sometimes have to risk it.


Now, I did not go to this camp expecting to go knife throwing. When I heard we were I have to admit, I was really scared. I was scared because the camp was trusting 15 teenage boys to hold 14” long, smooth, iron blades. These knives were a little heavy and to fling them full force at a wooden wall – that looked as if it could be knocked over with the next blow of the wind – seemed crazy. But I went up there and I chucked my knives at the wall and said, “Hey, this is AWESOME!” and I never worried about those knives afterwards.


Next thing was Blobbing. Imagine a bouncy house. Now imagine that bouncy house in the middle of a lake. Now imagine it with no roof. Now imagine sitting on one end of it and having another camper launch you into the air by jumping on the opposite end. That is what Blobbing is. I saw this and I said, “OH LORD JESUS! I ain’t gettin on that!”


Somehow, later that same day, I found myself on the end of that Blob and I say to myself, “What on earth am I thinking?” I had blobbed someone else, not realizing I would be shot in the air afterward. As I thought this, BAMN! Into the air I went and crashing down into the lake. And I have to say, I felt like I was a bird that was dive-bombing into a lake of really cold water. I also think that bird-like feeling was one of the most amazing things I have ever done; I took a huge risk. I mean, I was launched maybe 50 feet into the air with only a life jacket and swimming trunks on. It was CRAZY!


Then we braved a high-ropes course where we were to walk from one tree to another using a wooden plank bridge. These planks were only connected in the middle by a single cable. We were also supposed to walk across with a second person. Did I mention we were also suspended 50 ft. above the ground? It was really scary but somehow I survived and live to tell the tale.

The least comfort I felt all summer was at something called Fight Night. Imagine 150 pumped-up teens all running to an open field. All of a sudden we were given numbers in a group and were pulled to the outside of a rope arena. The counselors called a different number each time, with campers trying a different challenge concerning some sort of food. When my number – 12 – was called, I was to put my feet in a little swimming pool filled with Kool-Aid and little candy hearts.  I had to grab as many candy hearts as possible in 3 minutes. I didn’t get any. But that wasn’t even the bad part. For those of you who don’t know me, I don’t like to get food or sticky stuff on me. But after all of these games, the counselors came out of nowhere with buckets filled with what I think was a cinnamon and melted-chocolate mix (from what I could taste). They started throwing it by the handfuls at us. Then the counselors took orange Mountain Dew that had been sitting in the sun all day and started spraying the mass of kids. Next,  our torturers came out with buckets of what I thought was powdered sugar (but from tasting it found out it was flour) and started throwing that on us all. Next came tortillas. Then, they made a huge slip n slide and everyone went down it to get a little bit of the nasty off. I crashed into about 5 people going down. Even after that, I still left Fight Night looking like I could be baked into a chocolate cake. It was completely disgusting. But I am glad I stood up against that fear and had so much fun that day.


Throughout this camp experience, I learned that sometimes if I go against what I think are my limits, I can have a lot of fun. I also followed what my grandfather said: “Live life to the fullest, Jus.” I will Papa. I promise.


Rubber Band Powered Car – by JM

February 11, 2013, by

For my fuel class, I was assigned the task of creating a rubberband (kinetic energy) powered car in order to show how people create cars that can move using less energy. I learned how to make a motor for a car using only a rubberband and some tape. I am proud of being able to make a car that had actually moved. To create this car we took many steps. First in class, we watched Youtube videos of other rubberband cars in action to get an idea of what we had to create. Then we drew blueprints for our cars to have a visual goal as we worked to create our cars. My initial blueprint did not work at all. We then built our cars based off of our blueprints (but I re-invented the drawing board). We then tested our cars and made calculations to relate to our cars and the ways they move. We went on an FE to UIC to speak with their motorsports team. The way they helped my project is that they showed me that the design, weight, and displacement of weight are extremely important in the creation of a successful car. Look at the slideshow below to see the work I have created!

D.Ls memory

February 8, 2013, by


The action project for my who am I course was about about my favorite memory. My favorite memory was about when I got my first got black ops 2. What I learned was was that if you go deep into your memory you can tell a story about it.



My favorite memory was when I first bought my Black Ops 2 video game.I was there standing in line for 4 hours. My friends and I were very cold. It was snowing very hard that day. We took tests to see what we knew about the game to win prizes. When my team took the quiz we came in second place. We didn’t get the t-shirts, but we got badges and some guy said, “I’ll give you 10 dollars if you sell it to me.” I agreed so we traded items. Game Stop employees passed out pizza and chips just in case we all got hungry. Everyone ate everything. With  two hours left, before the launch,  and everyone was waiting inside Game Stop it was over two hundred people waiting in line. I was like 20th in line and my friend was right behind me.

With one hour left untill midnight, everyone and everyone had to wait outside because it was store policy. It was snowing hard and no one was giving up their place to go home. When they finally let us in to pick up the game we were in different tiers. I was in tier 5 and some of my friends were in tier 7 and 3. Some of them went  before me. When I finally got in there, I saw people walking out with the Veteran Package which gave them more new content for the game. My (mom) said she would buy it for me it, even though it 50$ extra. When I got my game I walked home as fast as I can so I played it both times, it was two o’clock in the morning. When I got home I was so tired I went straight to bed.

When I woke up the next day at nine o’clock in the morning it was Sunday morning . I went straight for my game and I played it from dawn till dusk . I was stuck to the controller like white on rice. I always played with my favorite Green camouflage controller. I also liked the color of the gun I had it was a light blue color. I used it in the game all the time. My little (brother), Trevon Taylor, always used the gold, diamond -encrusted camouflage on his weapon. At the time we were eating watermelon. We loved the taste in our mouth. We ate the whole melon.

I worked very hard. I had to do a month’s worth of chores to save enough just to get the game. I washed clothes and I cooked I  love to cook food. I’m always hungry -I eat two people combined. I am a really competitive person; I love to go against hundreds of people online.
The best thing I like’s about the game was playing live online.
Every game mode I either came in first second or third. One more thing I did Did with the games was take care of it. A lot of people don’t even put their games back in the case half the times so it gets dirty and does not work.

The Foreclosure Crisis – by JM

February 8, 2013, by

This post is for the Hurricane Season elective course at my school. Hurricane Season is an elective course where we have been learning what unnatural disasters are (an avoidable tragedy resulting from artificial, abnormal, or man-made causes) and how they affect the world. For this first action project, we were to select an unnatural disaster that was affecting our community and I picked the subject of foreclosure. This piece of work is to show how Foreclosure is a form of displacement and how it not only effects who is being foreclosed, but it affects the entire community. I am proud of doing so much research to get such a great understanding on my topic. I learned how to use iMovie through this process which is always good!

Please watch below the video I created and possibly leave a comment on what you though? =D

The Forclosure Crisis – Jm from J M on Vimeo.

Who am I podcast DL

January 26, 2013, by

My presentation is about truth. What I am writing, is what I believe is pertaining to truth. What I learned was that if you believe in what you say and its truth towards you, you should do it. I made a podcast of me reading my Paper on truth.


What Do I Believe? – WAI – JM

January 25, 2013, by

For the Who Am I? Course, we have been given a project where we were to create a podcast based off of something we believe in (in order to find out what I believe in, you have to listen to the podcast). The point of this piece was for us to find out more about ourselves through questioning things in which we believed in. What I am proud of doing through this project, is that I was brave enough to even speak my mind on something that I had kept rather hidden. Through creating this podcast, I have learned more about myself and the way I believe in things.


Ethanol Fuel Cycle – JM

January 22, 2013, by

Hello! This is the action project for my fuel class. I have created a fuel cycle on the production of corn ethanol. The purpose of this piece is to show how corn is made int ethanol as a fuel. I am proud that I was able to create this project in only 5 days. I learned a lot about the chemical reactions that go into creating ethanol and the process in general.

Project Gratitude – JM

December 12, 2012, by

During this Civic Engagement course, we have created a Micro-mentary and workshop on the power of gratitude. The purpose of this is to help people learn about the power of gratitude. I am proud of being able to work so hard on two really huge projects in such a small amount of time and get so much of the intended effect from it. I learned what gratitude means to other people and the effect that comes out of gratitude.


GCE Workshop Plan

Process of Making The Micro-Mentary

When we first heard we were making a micro-mentary, we had no idea what we were going to make. This was one month ago. Within one month, we have made a 3 minute movie which is in the form of a documentary. In this one month, we have set up multiple interviews with people who we believe represent gratitude with through what they have done with their lives. We have also gotten a lot of b-roll that fits in with our movie. With parts of the interviews we recorded and with most the b-roll, we did this animation technique called rotoscoping where you retrace almost all of the images in your movie to make the movie look like it was all animated. For 10 seconds of rotoscoping, it takes 30 hours of work. We managed to get this entire movie done this month with 8 people rotoscoping, interviewing, filming, and editing the video.


The Longest Day 12-6-2012

December 7, 2012, by

For my Civic Engagement term, we are keeping a journal on how we feel and what we discover and all the good stuff. I am blogging on one journal entry I believe is my best for this week because I believe me and my group used 2 of the characteristics global citizens have which are Accountablility and Purpose. I am really proud of not giving up on rotoscoping and to continue through alll of the long and tedious hours of work we have put into our project. I have learned a lot on how to trace straight lines and curvy object from rotoscoping for so long. Continue reading to find out more. =D

The Longest Day

“I need to get up and move before my brain explodes!” – G.L.

We have been working all day long.=( We Started school at 9 AM doing rotoscope, ate lunch, met with our principal, and then went to YouMedia to work until 8 PM. We only stopped to eat lunch and dinner. We have achieved so much today by working non-stop so, we definitely have shown purpose and accountability. I love working with my group because we work so well yet still find a way to have so much  fun. I think that I am going to work for ever doing rotoscope. The best and most amazing thing we did today though was that we finished our lesson plan and have most of the rotoscoping done. =D I can’t wait for us to see our final product because it is going to look so amazing! I dont want this unit to end though. Because then my group shall be split. =(