Ceramics 12 Core Competency Reflection

Positive Personal and Cultural Identity

My background/upbringing heavily contributes to who I am as a person. All the symbols on my ceramics tile represent aspects of who I am and how I was brought up.

I was a summer baby, born in August, and I grew up in Osoyoos which is one of the only deserts in Canada. I spent much of my childhood running around in the bright warm sun, and to this day, I feel most content when the sun is shining- hence the sun on my tile.

I like to embrace my intuition, which is symbolized by the eye on my tile. I value the action of “trusting my gut”. I often dream of events that end up coming true in real life, or have bad feelings about situations/people without logical reason, that end up being accurate.

I’m a very passionate, emotional person. I often find myself grieving others’ pain and feeling it with them. No matter how hard I try to act unbothered, under it all I am a fragile person who is easily affected by my surroundings. This is displayed in the tear.

The big red heart signifies my capacity for love. I’ve now reached a stage where I’m selective about individuals I allow into my inner-circle. But the few people I am close with, I love hard. I put my loved ones before anything and I’m not afraid to stand up for them even if it puts me in a troubling position.

As a child, my family was always doing things quickly, it seemed like they were constantly rushing to get something done or be somewhere. Life felt very fast paced and it didn’t take long for people to get overwhelmed when things went wrong. I didn’t like this style of experiencing life, and I acted rather slow and patient. I think someone had to be. I still like to move at my own pace and let things flow, I hate rushing around. I don’t know if this was an adaption to my environment, or a trait instilled at birth (I did take my time coming out of the womb). This characteristic of mine is shown in the snail on my tile.

Lastly, I added a butterfly to my piece. I always see butterflies around me. Sometimes they land on me and it makes me feel special. I also like to compare the human experience to the butterfly cycle. I think we start off as “caterpillars”, go through tragic experiences (in the cocoon), and eventually grow into the best versions of ourselves, transforming into a “butterfly”.

Arts and Crafts 11

My Core Competency: Personal and Social

I am aware of different aspects of myself. I can identify people, places, and things that are important to me. 

I am mindful, I practice being present in the moment and paying attention to my thoughts, feelings, and sensations without judgement. Being mindful helps me cultivate a heightened sense of self-awareness. I take note of the individuals, experiences, and places that have a positive impact on my life. I acknowledge and express gratitude for their presence in my life and their impact on my happiness. I show this in my pennant project, which involved representing my values through symbols on a coat of arms. 

My Pennant:

My Model Town

Creating a Model Factory Town

  • Town Name- Frostford Village
  • Company Name- Frostford Productions
  • Resources Available- Wheat, livestock, water, crops, coal
  • Elements of The Town- Textiles factory, coal mines, shelters
  • Population- 236
  • Explanation / Brief History- In the early 1800’s, a man called Robert Frostford came upon a wide spread of unclaimed land. He built a home for him and his family where they lived off their own crops. Robert decided he would like to make a business that could be passed down the family line, so he sought out to find workers who could get his company running. He found 30 people within the first two years who were struggling to afford to look after themselves and their families, and he hired them. In return for working at Frostford Productions, they were given decent meals and each paid 10 cents an hour. When Frostford died from an unknown sickness, the company was handed to his son William. By then, there was over 200 people living there working for him, and he didn’t like paying them all their share of money because he was becoming greedy. William lowered their pay rate to 5 cents, and overtime, his labourers left him to work at a higher paying company.

Media Fluency Reflection

  1. How was the ease of access in building the town, and what software did you use specifically? I used an app called MyCraft, which is basically a knock off, free version of Minecraft because I’m too broke for that. It wasn’t too difficult but since I haven’t played Minecraft in a few years (and when I did it was only at friends’ houses) it took me a little getting used to. Also, when I did play it I used a computer or an Xbox which I think would have been much faster than using my Ipad (mostly just since I’m more used to it that way).
  2. Were you able to apply the skills you learned in the planning stages appropriately to a digital environment? I immediately had an image of what I could make my factory, so I looked online to be sure that my idea was accurate and created it right away. For the rest of my town, I found it helpful to checkout some examples made by my classmates.
  3. What were the sources you researched to make this an “authentic make-believe” town? I mostly relied on my knowledge from class, but at one point I looked at some images online by searching up “factory towns from the 1800’s”.
  4. Is there other software online that could have done the job better? Explain. I think that using the original Minecraft might have been better because there’s more building sources in that, but otherwise it was practically the same. Both are pretty straightforward and in my opinion, perfect for this project.

My Most Challenging Foods Lab

I would say the most challenging foods lab for me was when we made quinoa salad/buddha bowls. I think this was the most challenging because of the amount of knife skills involved. I wanted each vegetable to be sliced a certain way; equivalent in shape and size. Along with the hard and specific vegetable cutting, I had to lay each ingredient down in a nice pattern for presentation. We had to choose at least 3 vegetables, 1 protein, 1 leafy green, and 1 type of seed for our salad. For the vegetable portion, I picked carrots, peppers, and tomatoes. For my protein, I added chickpeas. I layered some spinach as my leafy green, and lastly used pumpkin seeds to top it all off. My buddha bowl was very colourful, making a nice presentation and meeting the product standards. The veggies were fresh and crunchy while underneath was the soft, moist quinoa which gave off a sort of earthy scent. Personally, I didn’t like the mix of cold, crunchy vegetables with warm soft quinoa so this wasn’t my favourite thing we cooked. We also had a drizzle of Miss Bolli’s homemade dressing which had a sour-ish taste and definitely added more flavour to the salad. It was quite challenging and time consuming to cut up each vegetable so categorically, but I think the end product was worth it. The different shapes and sizes of the veggies were balanced and complimentary to each other.

Most Successful Foods Lab

I think my most successful lab was when we made “Chocolate Crinkle Cookies”. The cookies were deliciously soft, moist, and sweet. Since it was the day before halloween, we decorated one with icing and liquorish, making it into a spider! As soon as we opened the oven to take the cookies out, I could smell a chocolatey scent. I chose this as my most successful lab because me and my partner’s cookies turned out the perfect shape, size, and texture. They tasted great as well! I think we definitely met the product standards; a light brown colour and very soft texture, with no large bumps or cracks on the outside. I don’t think we really had any challenges in this lab. We worked quickly and always knew what to do, I’d say that was quite a success. If there were any little problems, we worked together and got past them easily, but I don’t think we struggled with much. We probably could’ve conversed more but everything still worked out right. We made these cookies using the “molding cookie method”, meaning we mold the dough in our hands. We didn’t use any tools or equipment that we haven’t used before. The cookies weren’t very healthy; I would rate the nutrition a 2 out of 10 because there wasn’t anything healthy in it except egg and there was a lot of sugar.

My Favourite Foods Lab

Although it is a basic and easy recipe, my favourite foods lab was when we made grilled cheese sandwiches. It was probably the most simple food we made, yet one of the tastiest, in my opinion. We watched lots of videos on how to create a yummy grilled cheese, and I learned some tips to make mine taste amazing. For example, you can put salt on the buttered side of the bread for some extra flavour, melty cheeses work the best, and pressing down your sandwich while it’s cooking with a spatula helps the bread toast evenly. That last one didn’t really work out for me- my grilled cheese was almost burnt on one side and a pale golden colour on the other, but it didn’t affect the taste! My sandwich was crispy, melty, and perfectly flavourful (I think the salt made it that much better). I think the reason it wasn’t evenly cooked is because I might not have had the pan directly in the centre of the element. I decided to put sliced up cherry tomatoes in my grilled cheese… which is funny since I don’t even like tomatoes that much, but it turned out delicious. I think I’ll add them to all my grilled cheeses from now on. My greatest success in this lab, although you can’t see from the picture, was my knife skills with the tomatoes. Since as I said I’m not a huge fan of tomatoes, I wanted to cut thin slices and evenly spread them out so they wouldn’t taste too strong. I was quite impressed with how even the slices were, since cutting isn’t usually my strong suit.

My Breakfast Home Lab

final product
mis en place
in the process

For my breakfast home lab, I created a very tasty and filling breakfast sandwich. I chose this instead of the other breakfast choices because our foods class hasn’t made anything like it yet and I know that my mom would prefer it over the other options. The two bread slices on the outside of the sandwich, I fried in a pan with an egg in the centre; “egg in a hole”, and seasoned with salt and pepper. In another pan, I cooked 3 full slices of crispy (not TOO crispy) bacon- of course, enjoying the aroma of it wafting through the house. As the bacon sizzled away, I prepared the veggies. I chopped fresh green onions, sliced half a medium ripe tomato (overripe tomatoes are gross and unappealing), and tore up some crisp leaf lettuce. For added flavour, I sprinkled salt and pepper and drizzled hot sauce in the sandwich. My breakfast sandwich was colourful and cooked nicely, and the different flavours worked well together. My mom, who loves her bacon and eggs, enjoyed having fresh veggies incorporated with her favourite dish. A challenge could have been that my eggs were somewhat overcooked, but my mom and I like them that way so it wasn’t a problem. I think that to improve my breakfast home lab, I could have been more creative and added less basic ingredients to it. Overall it was a balanced meal, and although I call it a breakfast sandwich, I think it is suitable for any time of day.

Communication Skills

In one of our foods labs, we made banana muffins. They tasted good, and for muffins, they weren’t overly unhealthy. We worked fast and helped each other out. The muffins had a nice moist texture and each muffin was about the same size as the others, which was a great success. A challenge began when I accidentally added the same amount of sugar as I did flour, which was way too much. I told my partner how I messed up and we worked together to take the extra sugar out. Luckily we took out the right amount and our cookies turned out awesome.

I think communication is extremely important when cooking with others. For example, messing up with the sugar. If I didn’t tell my partner the mistake I made, she wouldn’t have helped me fix the problem. So many things can go wrong when you don’t converse with your peers, discuss a plan, and sort out who’s working on what. One person might expect that their partner is pre-heating the oven or preparing one of the ingredients (when they aren’t), and they could both end up missing that step. It could also go the opposite, where both people take responsibility for the same step and they waste their time making more than needed of an ingredient.

Kitchen Tools/Appliances

I think that one of the most useful kitchen tools would be a pan. When our Foods Class made Breakfast Hash, we cooked all of our ingredients in a pan. This lab was fun and the dish we made tasted awesome. I think my biggest success with this dish was cutting all of the vegetables properly. I made each vegetable similar size and shape to each other. I think a main challenge in this lab was being sure to cook all the ingredients for the right amount of time, and on the right temperature. We don’t want to overcook the vegetables, making them soggy or burnt, or undercook them, so they’re hard and stale.

I think that at least for this lab, The pan was the most important tool. You can’t make breakfast hash with raw vegetables and potatoes, and the oven just doesn’t cook them the same. Pans are very useful since you can make so much with them. They’re often used for frying eggs, sandwiches, vegetables, and more. They can also be used for making different sauces, like pasta sauce, or even sweet sauce like berry or caramel sauce. It’d be fun to try making something like that.

Fun Facts About Pans

  • Filling a pan with boiled water and some apple peels will remove the rust and stains and add some shine
  • Cast iron pans can be used to cook food over a fire
  • Non-stick pans should usually last about 5 years, but it’s important to stop using if they start to peel