May 15, 2008

Blog Prompt #4- How would I affect my environment?

For being a student since kindergarten to the college. The environment that I would mostly like to change was the school. I hope there's a much more extensive education materials and learning environment for the future students. I have read a news about the Microsoft is cooperating with schools in Philadelphia and Taichung, Taiwan to design the "future school" educational plan. The students may learn not only from the classroom anymore, their courses are more extensive which are not limited in the texts. They have to research for Starbucks, supermarkets, convinent stores. Comparing the prices of the gas and do a report on their laptop by the wire-less internet. The classroom also includes the museums and art centers for the hisotry and art classes. The students may use the software to sketch the art piece and send it back to the instructor from internet. They may also ask any questions from the MSN if they have any questions. The students will enjoy learning compare to the traditional learning environment. This education plan will hopefully be completed in 5-10 years later.

May 7, 2008

Volunteer Journals

Friday, 04/25/08, 3-4:30P.M. :
Today is my first day going to the Minnesota Internship Charter School for this volunteer service. I have spent some time figuring the route to the school. My volunteer manager- Amy is a very kind lady. It was raining whole the afternoon, she gave me a glass of hot water, and then we had discussed how the volunteer service works and the location of each classroom in the charter school. Most of the students in this school are from Ethiopia and Somalia. I had read the cultural and geographic background of them in order to get along with the students here. As an ESL classroom tutor, I am helping them with reading and writing assignments. I was nervous since I am not an English fluent speaker either, however, I found out their assignments were very basic. I helped few students with their English grammar assignments and fix some punctuation errors in their essay. This is my first time tutoring with African kids. I have always though about going to Africa to build them a house such as hospital or school as a volunteer. This tutoring job is a good start to get to know them, I am looking forward to continue this service. As the first day, I think I did pretty well to help with their homework.

Monday, 04/28/08, 2:30-5:00 P.M.
It is raining again today…It took me for a while to get to the charter school. I was really wet when I got there since it was raining heavily outside. I had a chat with Amy in her office with some rose tea. I found that Amy is a tea-fan, too. I promised her that I will bring some Chinese tea next time for her. I first helped Mr. Hassan in his Algebra class. Then he asked me if I can go helping another pre-calculus class since their teacher is absent today. The probability problems have struggled me at the beginning.. it has been for a while since my sophomore year in high school when I took pre-calculus class. But I have figured out all the questions from them at last..(I called my friends to figure out the answer…) I went to the homework center to help them with their English assignments after the pre-calculus class finished. I have helped few students with their biography papers. I found out most of their goal are going back to Somalia for education, or building a school and hospital. I had chats with few students there about their culture, society and the situation today. I have felt I am very lucky that my parents have offered me this opportunity studying abroad in a college at the U.S. I realized I did not only learn how to offer as a tribute but also treasure everything I have now, such as a well family and living in a peaceful country.

Tuesday, 04/29/08. 3:00-5:00P.M.
I brought some Chinese Wu-Long tea to Amy. I hope she likes it. I was working with a student who is doing her college application essay today. I gave some suggestions and also fixed some grammar mistakes for her. In her paper, her future goal is continue her study in college and doing the volunteer as a tutor like me. In this paper, she also needed to explain why she thinks the education is important. After we talked about her family and social background in Somalia, I pointed out few things that might be helpful with her topic. From this service, I could learn many things from their country and culture, such as the conflicts, hunger and chaos there. I always saw these painful disaster from the movie or news, I felt more impressive from these students’ mouths.

Friday, 05/02/08, 2:30-5:00 P.M.
Mr. Hassan had a sore throat today, so I helped him teaching on the broad. It was my first time teaching in front of so many students. I was really nervous because I was afraid they might not be able to understand my English…Fortunately, it was really easy, I just explain the formula and the graphing. Most of the students in the class were really kind and innocent. I met some new friends here, too. I also learned some basic Somalic vocabularies. They have asked me so many questions about Taiwan, I think I will bring some Taiwanese snacks for them since they have never tried any Asian snacks before.

Tuesday, 05/06/08, 3:30-5:00P.M.
Today is my last day doing the volunteer service for this semester. I am very glad that Amy loves the Chinese Wu-Long tea I gave her. Also, the kids in algebra class also enjoyed the snacks I brought for them. I have learned a lot within those two weeks. I learned how to help others, many things from the student’s cultural background and recognizing myself. I have learned the civil war, conflicts between warlords and the geography in Somalia. It is a very valuable opportunity working here as a tutor. It has a great start for my future goal, which is going to Africa to build them a house. I believe I will continue this volunteer service next semester, too.

May 6, 2008

Term Project Presentation Review 2

Both of the first group and second group are presenting the topic of ensuring environmental sustainability. The first group focused on an organization in India. Each group member is presenting the different way from that organization, such as the slums and the importance to architects in India. They had done lots of work in researching. There was one thing I think they can make the project better, they might want to shrink the architect’s introduction part, since it was a little boring. Instead of introducing the architects, they can specify on the Indian environment and economic condition.
I really like the second group’s presentation. They were also doing the goal-7: Ensure environmental sustainability. They have focused on many different ways to the topic, such as air pollution, water sanitation, energy and forestry. The presentation was very interesting. They had also put all their ideas into a document in a big folder. I have read their introduction, conclusion and all the documents in the folder, they were very detailed. I have learned many new things from their presentation.
For the third group, they were presenting Goal 1: Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger. They focus their topic in Africa. The presentation was interesting since they had introduced many inventions due to the hunger and poverty. I thought the presentation was a little bit short since we were almost ran out of time. However, it was still a good presentation and research overall.

April 24, 2008

Term Project Presentation Review

After reviewing the presentation from group 2, I found out their topic is similiar with mine, which are both about sustainability. Their topic was Goal 7- Ensure environmental sustainability. I realized their presentation has a more focus point then ours since they are only focusing on a main topic. I reallylike the idea of using the waste paper as the link with each images and texts for their presentation since the topic was sustainability. They had a good research with well-arranged sources. Including why sustainability, what is sustainability and how sustainability. I did learn many other things besides my research from their presentation. I thought my research can be more broad and give more examples of sustainability after reviewing group 2's presentation.
These are some images of sustainability which they can take as a reference source:

April 3, 2008

Blog #7- Covers for term project

Here are some covers I made for our term project. Our group has 4 different topics, and 5 of us will do the one each, and try to gather the common idea from our topics of its impact to global development.
Out topics are education, sustainability, pharmaceutical drugs and housing.



March 13, 2008

Blog Prompt #6- examples of presentaion for the term project

Our our group has met several times within these three weeks. Our project is to improve the global development. We all found some different sources from internet and the architecture library. The topic is wide, so we decided to focus on different points and find the common aspect within these sources. We had discussed several ways for our presentations, such as powerpoint, speech, or a poster and portfolio. Finally we came up the idea to make a portfolio. Since we all have learned the idea of making a portfolio from Fundamental Design I last semester. And one of my group member was the editor of the yearbook back to her high school, so we believe the idea of making portfolio is an excellent way for our presentation.

I would use this image as the cover of the portfolio. Although the four images have different aspect, it still has common meaning of global villege: the united nations, the mirror with the reflection of the sky which just looks like an earth, and a hand holding the globe, I think it means the world is big, but even a person can have big change to it.

This image is the advertisement from UN. This china piece is shaped as a grenade.
I guess what it tries to emphasize is that Peace is as fragile as a china, also it illustrates peace is as valuable as porcelain. The reason that the designer chooses something that looks like a grenade as the main subject is that the peace is as easy to explode as a grenade.


I would choose these images for our portfolio. These images are strong and powerful. They are simple, but also have depth meaning within. People may understand what they try to express once they look at them.

March 6, 2008

Blog#5: the built environment which affect who I am

Ozayr would like to know why I wanted to take 1701. Well..first of all, it's a required course if I want to apply for the architecture major..Before I go to the lectures, I thought it would be a class discussing about the trees on the street or the urban designed..I realized it's completely different then what I thought before. Although sometimes I am struggling with the comprehensions about the lectures, I still have learned many things which I would never know in my life.
I think the environment is also the phenomena. Framworks and clockworks are similiar since it both mechanisms. I believed both also has its reasons to start and end.
The environment which affects me the most is the Taoyuan International Airport in Taiwan. Since I was a kid, my parents often traveled many different countries with me. I was always excited when I was on my way to the airport. After I stepped into the lobby of the airport, I could feel I am gonna experience or meet something new, or an adventure is waiting for me. However, the excited feeling has changed after my parents decided to let me study abraod at the U.S. during my sophemore year of the high school. It's my first time to feel I am leaving my parents, friends, home and everything I am familiar with for a while. I had no clue about learning in a foreign country. After I stepped into the lobby, I felt upset and sad instead of excited. Going to the airport is no longer an adventure for me....This feeling has continued each winter and summer ends, when the breaks end and ready to go back to schools.

interior of Taoyuan International Airport:
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The lobby...which I stepped in after entering the airport:
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Another built environment which affects me is the Jiji Rail Station in Nantou, Taiwan. It's the only remained wooden
structured rail station built by Japanese colonist during Japanese Colonial Period. When I was a kid, I often go
visit my grandfather with my parents in Jiji, Nantou by rail system of Taiwan. I still can remember the views outside
the train, first was many tall buildings and skyscrapers, then it gradually turned into simple vernaculars buildings and forests. I enjoy the feeling from the country in Taiwan, it's simple and relaxable. Unalike the cities, I don't have to rush my time, I may slow down my steps and enjoy the kindness in Nantou, which I can never get from the cities.
Jiji Rail Station's simple wooden structure gives me that feeling, too. Also it stands for my grandfather since I am always excited when I arrive the station. I feel I am no longer far from my grandfather and I can't wait to see him!!
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However, the Jiji Rail Station collapsed by 921 Jiji Earthquake. The wooden structure couldn't suffer the violent shake from the earthquake.
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It was rebuilt after the earthquake, but my grandfather also passed away after the construction was done. I will always think about my grandfather when I see the Jiji Station again.
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February 21, 2008

Blog Prompt #3- Research Project of Millennium Development Goals

Global Partnership for Development:


1. A young British Red Cross worker assists drought victims at a camp in Bati, Ethiopia.

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2. United Nations Transitional Authority in Cambodia peacekeepers from Bangladesh teaching a Cambodian army soldier how to deactivate mines.

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3. A Canadian medic examining an elderly woman. The medic travels to villages aboard an UNTAC river patrol boat.

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Title: Where is the love?
Singer: Black Eyed Peas


1. "I would define globalization as the freedom for my group of companies to invest where it wants when it wants, to produce what it wants, to buy and sell where it wants, and support the fewest restrictions possible coming from labour laws and social conventions."
-- (Percy Barnevik, President of the ABB Industrial Group)

2. One has to realize that the powerful industrial groups concerned in the manufacture of arms are doing their best in all countries to prevent the peaceful settlement of international disputes, and that rulers can achieve this great end only if they are sure of the vigorous support of the majority of their peoples.
-- Albert Einstein

3. We should know that only replacing the economics of competition and greed with the economics of equitable cooperation will guarantee a globalization that takes advantage of potential efficiency gains in ways that also promote environmental protection, international equity, economic democracy, and variety.
-- Robin Hahnel

February 14, 2008

Blog Prompt #2 - Social Design

During the first day visiting the Minneapolis downtown, The most impressive was not the heavy snow, but the huge skyway system. I have been to many cities all around the world, but I have never seen a city has such a conveninet public transit system.

Most of the cities have chose to build underground tunnel system instead of skyway system. In my opinion, skyway system is much more social design then the underground tunnels since people really get the view of the city, and "feel" the people face-to-face on the skyway.

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February 6, 2008

Blog Prompt #1

Inspired by Andy Goldworthy, document and investigate, through text and image, this idea of energy, flow and transformation through the city.

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