Skip to main content

Posts

A Summer of Art

Before the summer, I was not a fan of going to art museums because I didn't find them to be engaging. The idea of looking at obscure modern art paintings did not sound interesting. I have fuzzy memories of going to a local art museum when I was a kid and had no idea what these paintings were trying to tell me. Although I appreciate some types of art, I never considered spending the time to stroll around the exhibits and carefully look at the artwork. During the summer, I noticed that I was bored of staying at home. Despite living in the San Francisco Bay Area for 3 years, I barely explored my surroundings. The last thing I wanted to complain about on the first day of school was that my summer break in California was very ordinary. Because of this, one of my summer goals was to spend more time going to the local museums, in particular art museums.
The reason I chose art museums as my main objective is that I had a passion in classical music and piano, which is a performing art. I h…
Recent posts

Reading Digital Minimalism Again

I decided to reread Digital Minimalism because it is an easy read and something that I can finish within a few days. When I first read Digital Minimalism, I was primarily focused on how to stop wasting time on the web browsers as I have a strange temptation to search up anything on Google. After reading it for the second time, this habit happens a lot less often. Therefore, I focused more on his other ideas that I wanted to apply. To do so, I annotated the book in a detailed manner, which I did not do when I first read the book. If given the choice, I rarely annotate. However, I decided to annotate this book because I felt that I would benefit more instead of only reading the book. Annotating was beneficial as I paid more attention to some of Newport's arguments that I had previously skimmed over. What I got most out of the book this time is the fact that connection does not equal conversation.
I was convinced that I should probably stop using text messaging as my primary way to c…

Are We Living in a Brave New World?

DISCLAIMER: I am probably exaggerating how bad modern technology is because I compare it to the technology in Brave New World. Of course, our society is not dystopia. However, there are flaws in our society that can be similar to the issues presented in the novel.
For my summer reading assignment, I chose to read Brave New World. Dystopian books are one of my favorite books because they make me ask various questions about the society's laws, culture, traditions, etc. These books can be quite challenging to read because I sometimes don't understand why they have these horrible laws, yet their citizens still willingly obey society's rules. Going back to the book, BNW is a dystopian book that is very different from 1984. In 1984, the society is very depressing because life is bleak. The citizens' main goal is to work for the government. On the other hand, BNW  is the opposite. Everyone is "happy" and life appears to be enjoyable. No one is sad because they can t…

How I Got a 800 on SAT U.S. History (and You Can Too!)

Introduction
Although most colleges do not require subject tests, they recommend taking these tests. If something is recommended, the best choice is taking subject tests. Subject tests are helpful by demonstrating one's ability to master a specific subject. The U.S. history subject test is one of the hardest subject tests to score an 800. Those who score an 800 are in the 97th percentile. Don't let that number scare you because you have the potential to do well on this test. Without further ado, let us begin!

Information
You can find basic information about this test online, but I will still cover it here. The U.S. history subject test is a 1-hour test that has 90 multiple choice questions. There is a guessing penalty, meaning that an additional quarter of a point is subtracted (-1/4) when someone answers it incorrectly. No guessing penalty means that out of 1 point, 0 points are earned. The good news about scoring an 800 is that you do not need to get all 90 questions correct.…

How to get a 5 on AP U.S. History

Warning: This blog post is extremely long.
Introduction:
AP U.S. History (APUSH for short) is one of the most popular AP courses that students take all over the country. Although it is not the hardest AP class, APUSH still requires daily commitment and a lot of effort to score a 5 on the exam. According to the score distributions on Collegeboard, around 50% of students fail the exam (1 or 2), and around 10% (12% in 2019) score a 5 on the exam. If you are not happy with your other history exams and will be taking APUSH next school year, do not worry! The following blog post will go in depth on how to get a 5 on the exam. My blog post may make you have to work more than you need to get the minimum score for a 5, but it is still good to give you some advice. My learning journey is an individual one, so it may not fit you perfectly.

Mental Mindset:
First, we need to start with mental mindset because it is an important factor that is sometimes overlooked. The mindset is prevalent in learning…

Seminar 2: How Can One Actually Learn?

A very interesting thing I learned about in the second seminar was about the zone of proximal development. It sounds like a bunch of jargon but it isn't that hard to understand. The zone of proximal development is a theory in educational psychology that tries to find the optimal spot where children can learn and be independent at the same time. On one side, the student can do a task. On the other side, the student cannot do a task. A common trait that both sides share is that this is where learning does NOT happen. Strangely, I found it to be an important realization. Before, I would associate learning a very hard topic as learning, even if I struggled a lot and had no idea what was going on. Although I had an assumption that I was learning because it was a difficult topic, in reality I did not learn anything at all.
Other insights I got from the seminar is that it is quite hard for a teacher to ensure that all the students are learning and flourishing in the class. As the advisor…