Wednesday, May 28, 2008

light at the end of the tunnel

There is less than 11 full days when I have to be in class. We are so close to the end of the year, but I feel like I have more work than ever. I have final projects in AP Euro, Spanish, and of course English. I have a pretty solid idea what I am going to do for my presentation. To start, I am going to summarize my paper and go over my thesis. My thesis is that fairy tales are applicable to todays time. This should take about 3-5 minutes. Next, I am definitely going with the idea I posted in my last blog about modernizing fairy tale characters. I am going to make worksheets with a picture of the fairy tale character and small summary of their characteristics in case someone is not familiar with them. Then after about five minutes within the group, I will rejoin the class and go around and discuss what they came up with. That should take around 7 minutes of the presentation time. Then I will link that to what I did for my project, I modernized The Ugly Duckling. Depending how much I have done on my project, will be how much I am actually going to be able to present about my project. That should fill up the remaining time.

Progress on my project is going slow. I am writing my fairy tale called The Ugly Dancer, a modernized tale of Hans Christian Anderson's The Ugly Duckling. I have a detailed outline of my story, so I know exactly where I am going with it. I have three pages fully written so far. I am hoping to finish up writing my story by this weekend. Then over the weekend I am going to take pictures for my story. Then, hopefully by next week I will put everything together. After that I will be done with high school English forever.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

part 2- project/presentation

Now that I am finished with my research paper, it is time to move on to the project and presentation. For my presentation, I came up with a good idea for the class activity. Since my research paper was on how fairy tales can be modern I am going to break the class up into groups. Each group will receive a fairy tale character, that I'm assuming everyone will know, and they will have to modernize them. The list so far includes Cinderella, Thumbelina, The Ugly Duckling, and The Emperor (from The Emperor's New Clothes).
As for my project, I haven't decide yet if I am going to make my own modern fairy tale or modernize an existing fairy tale. Right now, I am leaning towards modernizing an existing fairy tale, because this project is going to take a lot of time, and if there is already a plot, it will make things a little easier. The stories that I may modernize are Hans Christian Andersen's The Ugly Duckling or The Brothers Grimm's Rapunzel. I am going to illustrate the book with my own photos. This week I will be focusing on writing my book. I am going to create a storyboard, so when I have the opportunity (and the people willing to pose for the pictures) I know exactly what I am going to take pictures of. While I am writing my story, I will need to keep a list of props, clothing, and places to go along with my story, so that I am ready. Hopefully I will have enough of my story down to begin to take some pictures over the long weekend.

Monday, May 12, 2008

almost there!

Today I realized that I will be missing school at least one day every week for the rest of the school year! I'm not sure if I want time to slow down or speed up. I want it to hurry up and be summer, but I am not looking forward to leaving all my friends in a little more than three months. With all these distractions it's important that I get my work done as efficiently as possible so I can enjoy this last month of high school.

Last week I read a lot more fairy tales and began writing my paper. I have an opening paragraph and a bulk of my research done. My thesis is that fairy tales are not just silly childish tales; they can apply to modern times and to adults as well. My three avenues will be analyzing the Brothers Grimm, Hans Anderson, and Aesop individually. I still need a transition at the end of the paragraph.
Here's my opening paragraph:

Snow White and the Seven Dwarves, the Ugly Duckling, and the Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing are all familiar fairy tales told to us since childhood. They are often dismissed as childish and foolish tales. Maybe it is the talking animals or powerful wizards that turn people away, but the lessons and morals are far from childish. The lessons conveyed behind the fairy godmothers and magic spells are lessons to keep in mind even after adolescence. Fairy tales have stood the test of time thanks to three main storytellers Aesop, Brothers Grimm, and Hans Anderson. Each of these authors can be attributed with the success of timeless fairy tales.

It is crucial this week that I stay on schedule, if I fall behind, it is just going to snowball and leave me with a lot of work for Thursday night. So here is my plan for this week --
Tuesday - in class I plan to write my paragraph on Aesop. Then Tuesday night I am going to write my body paragraph on the Grimms.
Wednesday - I am going to write my final body paragraph on Hans Anderson. Wednesday night I am going to write my conclusion and finish my paper.
Thursday - I am going to a field trip to Chelsea Piers with photo, so I won't be in class. Thursday night I am going to put finishing touches on my paper so it will be ready to hand in on Friday.
Friday - paper due!

Monday, May 5, 2008

Little Tiny, Hans Clodhopper, and The Salad

Last week I read about 40 Aesop's Fables and two Grimm' Fairy Tales. The fables are very different from the fairy tales. They are very very short, most only one page. In the edition that I have, at the end of each tale is an application. The application is the moral of the story, making it very easy to understand. For my project, I probably won't write a fable, I'll stick to just fairy tales.

This week is going to be very busy with two A.P. tests coming up, so I am going to have to work very hard during class time. Tuesday I am going to devote to just Anderson's Fairy Tales. I am planning to read very familiar ones such as The Ugly Duckling, The Princess and the Pea, and The Emperor's New Clothes. Also, I am going to read some I've never heard of such as Little Tiny, The Girl Who Trod on a Loaf, Hans Clodhopper, and The Old Street Lamp. Wednesday I am going to read Briar Rose (Sleeping Beauty), The Salad, The Pink, Cinderella, The Water of Life, Red Riding Hood, The Clever Gretel, Snow-White and Red-Rose, and Hansel and Gretel out of Grimms' Fairy Tales. Thursday is out wiki day and Friday is the day of my two A.P. tests, so I don't think Ill be in class. Over the weekend I am going to at least formulate my thesis, write my introduction, and maybe my first paragraph. Then next week, I am going to have to find research and finish up my paper.

I still have yet to come up with a good idea for my modern fairy tale, but I'll start worrying about that after the research paper.

Monday, April 28, 2008


Over break I did not do anything for English because I was in France having the BEST spring break ever!! But this week I plan to do a lot.
I changed my project slightly, and now I have a more focused idea. I am going to read Grimms Brother, Aesops Fabels, and Anderson fairy tales. My research paper will be answering the question of weather or not these fairy tales can be applied to modern times. Then my project will be to write my own fairy tale using the same styles as the three mentioned, but with a modernize twist. I will present it in a book form illustrated with my pictures that I will take. Right now I am going to focus on the research paper, but I'm worried for the book that I'm not going to come up with a good idea. So I will try to brainstorm a little bit on what my modern day fairy tale will be about.
This week I am planning to read at least 15 of Aesop's Fables and 3 or 4 Grimms Brother tales and annotate them. I will be keeping an eye out for how these stories can relate back to today's time. I'm sure the lessons behind them will be modern, but maybe the settings they are placed in will be a little outdated. I think this is a reasonable goal for this week. Maybe if I work well, I will read more in the books.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

fourth marking period and fairy tales

So for my final English project of high school, I am researching fairy tales. When trying to come up with a project, I knew I wanted to include two elements, photography and fiction. The topic of fiction is very general, so I did some research to see if I could narrow down my selection. So for preliminary research, just to get a general overview, I went to Wikipedia. The first image on the website was an illustration from Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll.So, I decided to read Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, but still hadn't narrowed what exactly I wanted to research. After discussing with several people, someone suggested studying fairy tales. Fairy tales may be aimed at a younger audience, but the morales are aimed at all of society. When I went home and discussed the topic with my mom and it turns out that we owned Aesop's Fables, Hans Christian Andersen's and Brothers Grimm fairy tales. So I'm not sure if I'm still going to read Alice's Adventures in Wonderland because the other three books contain a large volume of these fairy tales.

^^Wilhelm and Jakob Grimm^^

Thursday, March 27, 2008

last blog (of the third marking period)

So I finished Like Water for Chocolate. I know I praised magical realism in my previous blog, but now I'm not so sure. It's nothing against the style, because I did enjoy that, but I guess it was the way Esquivel used it. The death of certain characters (I won't mention who in case you want to read it) were a little bit on the ridiculous side. However, other than that I really enjoyed this novel. The next book I am reading (after I complete a project for this one) is Herland by Charlotte Perkins Gilman. I wanted switch it up and read a novel by a male author, but due to the lack of time, I chose what looked like the shortest book. This book like In the Time of the Butterflies and Like Water for Chocolate is written by a female author. Herland takes feminism to an exteme. Instead of presenting feminism in a normal setting, Gilman creates a setting dominated by women where there are no wars (according to Wikipedia). However, I find a peaceful society with only women highly unlikely. When one first hears of the society full of women, they might think, there are no comparable example in today's society. However, look at reality t.v. shows such as America's Next Top Model.

There is more drama than you can ask for in a house full of females; these girls fight, yell, and scream with each other and they're just competing for a modeling job, I'm having a hard time imagining that there is peace when they are all trying to run a country. But I guess the point of the novel is to illustrate female-empowerment. And this I agree with. Women can do just as good as a job as any man. It shouldn't matter if someone is a man or woman, it should matter if they are qualified for the task at hand. I hope that Gilman can realistically explain how this society functions and I hope to see this sociey suceed.

**paris countdown-20 days**