Thursday, June 3, 2010

XC - Quarter 4 - Babies

Babies, was about the first year of 4 babies life. One lived in Namibia, one lived in Japan, one lived in Mongolia and one lived in San Francisco. Of course there were major differences in how they lived and how they were raised. The one commonality between them all is that there was a mother who was almost completely responsible for raising the child. There was no one mother who was better then any of the others. They were all there for their children in one way or another. Each one of them had certain obstacles to overcome, some were just bigger then others. The Mongolian and the African mothers had already had children, but they were also the parents who didn't live in big cities and had fewer resources to help them. The parents from American and Japan were both inexperienced as parents and just from the movie it is easy to tell because they both went to classes with their children. None of the cultures had a "better" or "worse" way of parenting. For their own countries and societies the children were raised to be accustomed to what went on around them. Some did have it better then others though.
In Africa there was no electricity, no running water, no diapers. There wasn't much there, coming from an American's point of view. The child was often shown chewing on rocks or bones. There wasn't much of a sanitary situation going on there. In Mongolia it was a little better. The child was raised in a house, but the mother washed him but putting water in her mouth and spitting it out on him. In America and Japan, the mothers were in hospitals when they gave birth and had overall, very clean practices with their children. What looked universal throughout the film is that mothers are a huge part of the children's life. They are responsible for raising the children and being there for them when the children need them. The fathers are supposed to be there too, but it is mainly the mother's job. The children feel more connected to her, at least through out the film, that's how it looked.
All of the families and cultures are very different. There would be no way that one child could move to another culture, especially when they are so young. The Japanese or American child would never be used to the outdoors or the animals or the lack of common utilities in Mongolia and Africa, and the Mongolian or African child would never be used to the confinements of America or Japan and all of the new technologies that they have. They are all accustomed to their own environment and to change it would to flip their world upside down. These children aren't meant to experience other cultures just yet. They need to be able to grow up a little in their own first. It may be a bad way to look at something, but i think that developing roots is good because it gives you something to always go home to. They are only babies, but they will grow up eventually, and its the type of environment and parenting that they have that will make them who they are. That's what i think the entire point of the movie is.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

YOU THE MAN - XC - 4th Quarter

I did enjoy the play. I thought that i had a very strong message and that the way it was conveyed was very affective. What the actor was trying to portray through his characters was that domestic violence and rape are a lot more complex and harmful then thought to be. What he made very obvious is that they are things that we can see and either choose to do or not do something about. The characters each represented a different view point of the issues at hand. One was the father of a girl in an abusive relationship. One was a boy who saw a girl he knew with a guy he knew in an abusive relationship, and another was about how the "high school student" saw a rape type scenario unfold in front of him on tape. In each situation the characters react differently and what makes it so interesting is how the actor tried to make it as real as possible by having the characters make a decision that we would probably make differently. The underlying dynamics in all situations is the failure to call for help, and once people finally get that call or alert that something is wrong, they take no action to try and correct the wrong that is being committed right in front of them. The violence was able to continue because no action was being taken to stop it and the perpetrator was never confronted to the seriousness of his actions. What i would really like to analyze is how with "the virgin Larry," he sees and has a video tape of how his best friend raped a girl, but he was still to afraid to say anything to anyone and because of that, nothing was done until someone did say something. What made it worse is that Larry stood up for his friend the first time a girl had said he raped her, and then when he saw the video of his best friend actually raping the girl, he was still in shock. I didn't understand why the friend would lie to Larry about something like that, especially when Larry is sticking his neck out for him on the basis of trust, because the friend said he would never do something like that. Then, there was the father who's daughter was in an abusive relationship and how that really did impact the family. The daughter was spending more and more time with the boyfriend, maybe only because he made her or because she was afraid. Whatever the reason is, it is still messed up. What made it even worse is that he couldn't even do anything to help his own daughter because she didn't talk to him about what was going on in her life. There was a communication breakdown and in that loss there was a girl who was crying out for help, but the dad was already sealed out. The final part i would like to discuss is the character who was friends with both the girl and boy in the relationship, and he knew she was being abused and they had to secretly talk about it because the boyfriend has people spying on her. When they did try to talk, she was almost okay with what the boy was doing because she didn't know any different, and was scared of what change might bring. The discussion was very helpful because the people in my room, really did understand how wrong it all was and hearing their opinions on it only made me think about it more. They brought up points, like how scary it can be to have to choose between doing the right thing and your friends. It may seem easy, but they are still your best friend, and before you tell anyone, you always want to see if you can talk to them and make them stop without getting them on trouble. My group also said it can be scary to have to deal with domestic abuse, no matter who is it, because if you take one wrong turn or say the wrong thing to someone, then it could be really bad for someone involved. Personally i think that the play was very insightful for these issues, it did bring up some great points and good ways to solve problems that don't always have an obvious answer in this type of situation.

Monday, May 24, 2010

HW 58 - Parenting 102

So we listened to two different people in class, talk about the process of raising their children. Marguerite Scully has 3 children who range from ages 21 to 16 and Josh Marks has a new born baby. They both have completely separate ideas on how they will, have, and do raise their children. Marguerite was always very hands on with her children and always wanted them to have some sort of family role model/authority figure. She raised them to be honest, hardworking Americans. Josh Marks wants to raise his child to be able to make choices and be able to support them because she will know her strengths and weaknesses. He said "I want to expose her to certain opportunities so she can choose later in life." He wants his daughter to be able to understand the different choices put in front of her and choose the right one. Marguerite raised her children in a different age and generation then Marks did. She had to work and because of that she wasn't always there for them, but she did raise them. She made sure to always have family dinners and raise them to know that she did love them and always would. Marks is raising his daughter for success. He wants her to be able to go out into the world and be a force to compete with. He wants to structure her time as well as give her free time so she can understand how precious her freedoms are and so she can learn to live with structure.
When i asked my parents what techniques they used when they raised me, they told me about how my mom used to bathe me in the sink with the baby book right next to her, telling her what to do. So i asked about what morals they raised me with. They said that they raised me to respect them and other adults, and to always try my hardest. They raised me so that i would do the work and be able to succeed in life. They want me to be able to live my life with confidence within myself to know what i was doing is right. They raised me very similar to how Marks wants to raise his daughter. They had structured free time for me. They had everything i did planned out to some extent so that i would be better accustomed to how things work in life. They didn't do it so i would follow the powers at be, but so i would understand them and be able to work with them. They raised me to work hard by always insisting that my homework was done, and done well. They did this so that i would get into the mindset that i would always have to preform at my best, no matter what the circumstances were. Those ideals were instilled into me for my own personal gain, so that i would be able to be more successful as a personal and in turn have a happier and more prosperous life. I think that they had a good idea of what they were doing
Part 4
The whole point of this parenting unit was to be able to see what its like on the other side of the coin. To see how parents view us as their children, and how things are always different then how we perceive it. That isn't an insight though. What is an insight is that us as children are all raised to be goal oriented. No matter how our parents raised us, we are all meant to succeed. No parent raises their child so they can be a street sweeper. They raise us so that we can shoot for the stars and be rich, successful or just simply happy. I don't always believe the happy option, but i do think it is a coping mechanism for parents whose children didn't achieve the dreams that they had. Its the idealism in setting goals for your children, because to your knowledge, if they reach them, then they will be successful and RICH. When the child doesn't achieve this goal, then you set goals so that they can be "happy," not necessarily successful. There is a big difference between being happy, and successful, to parents at least. Parents always want their children to have easier lives then they did. They want them to be able to make a lot of money so they don't have to work as hard later. They want this goal for them because it wasn't something they could ever achieve so they want their children to be able too.
When i become a parent, i know i will be strict I wont let my child have free reign to do whatever they please. They will be under my control, but still have the freedom to do what they want, as long as a approve of course. I wont say they can't hang out late with their friends, but i would set a curfew so they understand that there is a structure and that structure needs to be followed and obeyed or there will be consequences. I wont ground them forever or take away something, but they will understand that when rules are set, they should be followed. I wont brainwash them to believe whatever anyone tells them. I don't want my child to be submissive to the powers at be, but to obey them and be able to understand why they are both wrong and right. I think being able to understand another person's point of view is a very important characteristic, and i want my children to have that characteristic. By being able to understand what another person is saying, they will never be regarded as ignorant. It will also help them exponentially when it comes to persuasive writing papers. Its the little things like that, that i want my children to understand and be. I want them to be that, because those are all the things that i am not. Or even ideas that were instilled in me. I can look back at that list and see places where i fall short to my parents expectations and i want to be able to correct that in my child, so they wont have the same weaknesses that i think i have. I guess thats a big part of parenting. A mixture of correcting your own weaknesses and correcting them, and trying to set your child up for a great future by your standards. Nothing is ever that simple though.

Monday, May 17, 2010

HW 57 - Parenting 101

I was about to say that i don't think that there such a thing as bad parenting, but sadly there is. Some people think their problems are all their parents fault and others don't have complaints. I think the connection between the people who complain about their parents and the people who don't complain about their parents is that for the complainers, there is too much freedom and equality between them. I think that the jobs for the parents is that they control their children but still treat them as equals. The parents can be parents and friends at the same time, and no its not really cool to have your mom and dad as your friend, but as out of context as it may be for a teenager to say, they are still the people who have your back no matter what and no matter how much they may hold you down, they are still looking out for your best interest. It may be uneducated of me to say, because i don't know another way of looking at it, but that's at least how i feel about it.
I think that the things my parents did were pretty successful. I don't know if everyone would agree, but i know that by raising me to want to work hard and do my work to the best of my ability and at least try, made me somewhat successful. They raised me to respect them and respect the people around me. I don't know if that worked out all that well but i do know that the ideals stuck with me. What they really did stress though is that i always work hard. That has stuck with me. I have always tried to do my work and to do it well. I know that i don't always get an A for effort but i never just give up. I think that is very important and that is what made my parents successful at what they did.

I read 3 articles, the first article that i read was "When Parenting Theories Backfire." I thought that this article was both funny and sad at the same time. I thought it was funny because of how the process slowly broke down and how the plan started to backfire on the woman and her family. The reason that i thought this was sad, which justifies my reason for it being funny, is that this woman took advice on how to raise her OWN children from someone else, this isn't that disappointing, what is disappointing is that she followed the theory entirely and because of that her children disobeyed her and the plan backfired. She didn't raise the children like she would have wanted to, she did it how someone else told her too. That is what i thought was sad.
The second article i read was "What Attachment Parenting is-The 7 Baby B's." I liked this article and didn't like it at the same time. I thought it was really good for when you start to raise a baby, but it doesn't address what happens as the child matures. Do you continue to raise it the same and give in to its every whim? I thought that there had to be some sort of separation and power difference. The baby cant grow up thinking its in charge, there does need to be an authority figure in its life. I like raising the baby and making sure that it knows that it is loved. But i don't like that the baby will never see the difference in power. But that is for later i guess.
The third article i read was the wikipedia article entitled "Ferber Method." It was about how you can't show the baby affection. You need to put it to bed, but you can't show it any affection while you do. You walk out of the room and don't walk back in for 5 minutes no matter how much the baby cries. This is teaching the baby to learn that it needs to live without you and not depend on you when it is in need. I think this method can be effective but it can also teach the baby to be distant from people and not trust them. It can show the baby and instill in it that people aren't to be trusted and that they wont do anything but hurt it. I think that the long term effects of this method can cause nothing but bad things to a child. It will be more likely to follow the herd because it doesn't know how to resist, only accept.
These are my ideas. In no way am i fit to be a parent at this present moment, but everyone has their own ideas on how a child should be raised.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

HW 56 - Interviews & Survey Question

My question was: How does the number/type of friends someone has effect their success? Or What effect do friends have on personal decisions?
My Interview questions are:
  • Have you ever been positively affected by peer pressure? If yes then how so?
  • Have you ever been negatively affected by peer pressure? If yes then how so?
  • How do you measure success?
  • Do you still keep in touch with any middle school/high school/college friends? If so, are they successful?
  • What is your worst memory of you and your friends?
  • What is your fondest memory that you had with friends?
Interview #1
For my first interview i asked a family friend who is in 9Th grade about what she thought about her friends and their affect on her life. When i asked about her good memories she said, "My friends positively affected me to do well in school. I want to do better then them on tests like as in a friendly competitions. We would all take the same test and after we would all compare grades and see who did the best. That made me want to study and do better so i worked harder. They also pressured me into playing volleyball. I did it because they did, and it turned out that i totally loved it."
When i asked about any bad peer pressure she said, "for my midterm in science all my friends got the answers online and when they gave them too me they told me that they were the answers and i didn't want to use them but i did because they told me that they were right and that everyone was going to use them. I did it because i knew i had too or else they would think less of me.
For my third question i asked how do you measure success, and she said, "If someone has a positive impact on someone Else's life and is happy with what they do. Money not so much a factor"
For my fourth question i asked does she keep in touch with her friends from her last school, and are they successful, and she said, "I do keep in touch with my middle school friends, some are successful. Some are trouble makers and are in bad high schools and they aren't happy and aren't doing so well and are making bad decisions. Others are happy and in good high schools and are getting good grades and they are proud of what they have done. I think that is successful
For my fifth question i asked what a bad memory she has with her friends was, and she said "When i went camp with friend we spent too much time together and because of that we started to get like short with each other. We had a big fight and we didn't talk for like 2 days but we ended up forgetting about it. It was terrible because we were good friends are i depended on her and when we weren't talking i didn't know what to do.
For my sixth question i asked what a good memory she has with friends, she said "One day me and all my friends were hanging out before class in the auditorium and one friend started to play the piano and we all started to sing and dance and have fun. We were all enjoying ourselves and forgot we were in school and because of that we just kind of let go of the stress of being in school.
I really liked interviewing her because i thought her answers were very innocent. She is a family friend who is currently in 9Th grade at a public school in Manhattan. Her responses were before drugs and alcohol begin to affect you and your friends being to make you drink. I forgot that there were problems with peer pressure besides drugs. It made me understand that friends are always going to try to make you fit in with them and its because they don't want to be alone when they try out the newest fad. They want to make sure that someone will have their back and be there for them no matter what they go through. They need to be able to anchor themselves to someone on the outside and have them to be able to go back too.

Interview #2
For my second Interview i questioned my friend Mark who is graduate of University of Pennsylvania. I asked him all the same question as the person before me and these are his responses:
  • Have you ever been positively affected by peer pressure? If yes then how so?
Yes. My friends encourage me to learn and achieve my goals. Many of my friends have creative talents, and inspire me to foster my own, particularly music. Many of my friends help me remain open minded.
  • Have you ever been negatively affected by peer pressure? If yes then how so?
Yes. At times I have joined in a group of friends making fun of someone. I ignored the hurt I caused because of peer pressure.
  • How do you measure success?
I measure success by one's capacity to love. If you can treat others with love, you are a successful person. You can foster success through generosity and creativity. If you can achieve the goals you set for yourself in this context, you are particularly successful.
  • Do you still keep in touch with any middle school/high school/college friends? If so, are they successful?
Yes, I hang out with mainly friends from my town (elementary and middle school). I have a handful of close friends from high school, college, and grad school that I also enjoy spending time with. They are all successful in their own way.
  • What is your fondest memory that you had with friends?
Some of my fondest memories with friends include trips to Vermont or other road trips. Many of them involve travel to a new place or experiencing a new thing, like a live band I have never seen before.
  • What is your worst memory of you and your friends?
My worst memories of my friends are when I let one of them down.
Although his answers are shorter you get an idea of what it is like for someone who is older. He has graduated from college and he has had more of a life experience then someone who is only in 9Th grade. He has lived his childhood through and now has the responsibilities of an adult. My favorite is his answer to how do you measure success? He doesn't look for money, but looks for the human to human connection. He wants the people around him to be able to understand their fellow man and not look at him by his clothes and judge, but get to know him and see him for his capacity to understand and accept. Everyone is different and because of that why should people be judged for their money? Money doesn't define a person, nothing can define a person, but that person themselves, so why not get to know them?

Interview #3
For my third interview i talked to one of my oldest friends. I asked her the same set of questions and these are her responses:

  • Have you ever been positively affected by peer pressure? If yes then how so?
Yes, everyday. My friends are the reason that i go to school and that i do some of the things that i love like painting. They like my paintings and ask me to paint things on their walls for them. I do it because i love it and because they are my friends. If it weren't for them i wouldn't never have kept painting like i do now.
  • Have you ever been negatively affected by peer pressure? If yes then how so?
Yes, i have done things that i regret. Things i am not proud of because i didn't want to do them, but they all did so i went along with them because i didn't want to be the odd one out. I didn't want to be left behind and the next day hear them all talking about it and think about what i missed.
  • How do you measure success?
I measure success by how happy someone is with what they are doing and what they have done. I think that if they can look back on their life and be happy with what they did and not regret that much if anything. Then i would say they are successful. I think that if they are happy and doing what they love then they are successful.
  • Do you still keep in touch with any middle school/high school/college friends? If so, are they successful?
Yes, I still talk to my middle school friends. Some of them go to my high school now. A lot of them are doing bad things and are failing classes, but they are happy for the moment. I think when they look back they wont be too happy, so i wouldn't say they are all successful, but i think that they are happy now. I think that their immediate success outweighs their future success.
  • What is your fondest memory that you had with friends?
One of my fondest memories is when i was going with my choir on a trip to a competition. As we were going there, one person stated to sing Don't Stop Believing' by Journey. When we heard it we all started to join in and pretty soon we were all singing it and for about 2 minutes the world seemed perfect. We were all in perfect harmony, and the world didn't seem to have a problem.
  • What is your worst memory of you and your friends?
One of my worst memories that i have with a friend is when me and one of my best friends got into a fight because i really liked this boy and she did too. The only problem is that he liked me, and because of that she didn't talk to me. I had to pick between this boy and my best friend. I chose my best friend of course, but it showed me how quickly she was ready to walk away from me and it really showed me who she was.
I really liked being able to talk to her about this because me and her have had our ups and downs. We have known each other since we were seven so of course we have had our own differences. I liked being able to see what she thinks about friendships though. We have always had our discussions about the stupid things we do and sometimes it leads to fights. It shows that we shouldn't blame each other, but look in ourselves for some inner strength to be able to be ourselves. That's at least what i think.
Side note
The first and third interviews asked to have their names left out.

My question for the student survey is:
Do your friends effect trivial everyday decisions that you make, such as what clothes to wear?

Monday, May 10, 2010

HW 55

My question was: How does the number/type of friends someone has effect their success? Or as a more in depth question: What effect do friends have on personal decisions?
Blog Comments:
Esther, I think its a really good start. It focuses on what other people think about helping others. But i think you should establish your own opinion before you work on someone elses. I think John has the idea here. He suggests your question include your opinion too. I think you should try Why do people help others, and what arguments have people made to justify that? Just suggestions, not really a good question on my part, but i think it could be used to turn into something good. But good start so far. Sam

I think you have a really strong start here. I think this is a really important issue that people face with inter friend drama. I think that this would make a really cool paper and i look forward to reading it. I think that your question would get some rather weird search results on the internet. I think that if you focus on the either building, or the decomposition of friendships then you will be in better shape so you have something to focus on instead of a broader topic. It seems like you have strong backbone here though and i hope my comment helps

  • "Teen Peer Pressure : Statistics and Facts." Family First Aid 1.1 (2004): n. pag. Web. 12 May 2010. .
This source is about how teens are effected by alcohol and drugs and how it is very overwhelming to students. It shows that 50% of students feel pressured to have sex regardless of their age and that 30% are offered alcohol or drugs. I think that this can really affect how successful or independent a person is and how the choices the people around them are making can actually effect them.

  • David, Nlvea. "Peer Pressure and Teens." International Adoption Articles Directory 1.1 (2007): n. pag. Web. 12 May 2010. .
For this article talks about how the reason we give in to peer pressure is because we have a need to feel accepted and respected by the people around us. It says that we don't always have the self confidence to turn down peer pressure because we need these people to validate us and show us that we are like or the same as them and they accept us as one of their own. And if they don't then we need to change so they do and they can.
  • Took, Kevin. "Dealing With Peer Pressure." Kids Health 1.1 (2007): n. pag. Web. 12 May 2010. .
This article discusses that there are two kinds of peer pressure and that they can be both bad and good. Peer pressure can help you remember things like the solar planet song because your friends told you it helped you remember them easier. Or it can be bad things like, all your friends are cutting math class, so you should too. These types of things are what define you as an individual and can really make or break you when you try to move on from your friends and become an individual. If you can by the time you are done with school. Peer pressure can be addicting and hold you back from success, whatever that can be defined as.
  • Manohar, Uttara. "Facts about Peer Pressure." Buzzle.com1.1 (2008): n. pag. Web. 12 May 2010. .
In this final article, the author writes about how peer pressure is bad and makes you do bad things, but the reason i liked this article was for the final post. "Peer pressure can be overcome with some help from you friends, family and your own determination to retain your individuality." I like the end where the author says that your own determination to retain your individuality. I think that shows how peer pressured the author was. She wrote an article saying how bad peer pressure can be and then finished it by saying that we need to be strong as individuals. The fact that peer pressure exists at all is because we are going to be affected by it no matter what. The result isn't just to give in and roll over, but its not to completely shield yourself from it either. There is happy medium. You need to be able to roll with the punches and learn from it because its only going to help you learn if you can keep your identity and be able to build it up at the same time. I think that would help more then trying to avoid it altogether.

HW 54

For this test i really thought the questions were pretty similar to the test you had us take about the questions we asked each other. I felt like the whole point of the test was to make us fit into categories that we are putting us into. It isn't like cold reading at all. We are judging ourselves and based on that we are put into categories. I don't know if i am an administrator. Maybe the people around me feel that i am but i don't know. I don't like these tests. I don't feel they are useful to us at all because you cant judge someone based on what letters some test assigned to them. They would work wonders for the job market if someone walked into the job they wanted, and along with their resume, they handed them the results to this test too as well as a full breakdown of the sections so they could better under stand them as a human as society and Jung judge them to be. Individuality doesn't matter when you can be part of a percentage.

ESTJ - "Administrator". Much in touch with the external environment. Very responsible. Pillar of strength. 8.7% of total population.

Personally i think this test does have a pretty accurate of who or what i am. I think that these results is how other people and myself see me. I mean its a lot of how people see me too. I may see myself as ESFJ and others might see me as this. I think that as well as taking this test for myself, someone else who is a good friend should take it for me. It would give a great comparison of how i see myself and how others see me. And i should have a high opinion but i still believe that the value of something lies in the eye of the beholder. Being a rebel doesn't make it any easier to get a job. I don't like what these tests stand for but i do like that they can give us some sort of feedback on who we are. Or who we think we are. Everyone likes to be reassured that they are still human and doing the right thing every once and a while. We all like to be validated. That is what this test is doing. It is showing us that we are important and showing us who we think we are so we feel like we are understood and valued. Not always a bad thing, but it is some form of false hope.