My Brain by Michiko

In our Language Arts class we drew our brain and wrote what we thought would be in it. Around that I put my Life List. My Life List has things that I want to do, places I want to go, and doing something for someone else. On my Life List I have some of the following things: go to New York, visit Hawaii, help someone in need, be on a school sports team, travel to all seven continents, own a beach house, and be someone’s hero. I choose to put those things on my Life List because if I had unlimited money and time, that is what I would try to do. Another thing that is on my brain is topics like school. I put school on my brain because school is an important part of your life, and sometimes it can determine your career. School teaches you things that you need to know in life. That is why I put my Life List and school on my brain.


iPads by Michiko

At the beginning of the school year, Durham Academy gave each student an iPad. The iPads were for school work only and at the end of the year the iPads were all turned in. Throughout this year I have used my iPad so much. I write all of my homework down on it and use it to email my teachers if I am absent, but the most helpful thing on the iPad is an app called Evernote.

Evernote is an app that you can take notes in but in addition to that your teachers can share a notebook of theirs with you so that you can get things like vocabulary lists that they put in their notebook. In just about every class Evernote is used. If you forget to write down your homework you can find it in Evernote.

In every class I use my iPad at least a little bit. In science, instead of my teacher collecting our homework and grading it he makes a short multiple choice quiz that you can use your homework on. It only has things that are on your homework. It is in an app called Nearpod.

We do projects on our iPads too! For projects we use more than one app. For example, if I was doing a Keynote presentation I would use Keynote, Reminders to remind me to do it, Safari, Camera, Sketchbook Express, and Easybib. My iPad has been very helpful during the year.


Membean by Michiko

In our Language Arts class we use a website called Membean. It is a website where you can learn more vocabulary words on what level you are on. When you first get on to Membean it will show you different words and you will check a box that ether says you know it or you don’t know it. After that first test you don’t have to take it any more. Your words just get harder and harder.

In class this year we use it several days a week. The thing I really like about Membean is that the words that it teaches you, you will find in books and on TV and you won’t have to look that word up. My favorite part of Membean is that when you miss a word or restudy a word it gives you a paragraph with that word in it and you guess what it means from three choices. I like that because it is just like the questions you get later without the paragraph so you are ready for when you get the question later.

I have come pretty far in Membean. At the beginning, I would only get a few right and many wrong but now I get more right than wrong.

During the year our class wrote letters to the developer about Membean saying things we liked and things we thought needed improvements. The developer wrote us each back saying how he appreciated the letters and how he would try to fix and improve the things that we suggested. I would definitely recommend this program to people who want to learn new words. I am looking forward to using this program next year!


The Memory I Would Like to Give Away First by Michiko

In Mrs. Donnelly’s blue language arts class we are reading a book called The Giver. In the book, the main character is a Receiver of memory. If I could give away one memory first, I would give away a memory of a birthday. It would start out with the excitement as you wake up knowing that it is your birthday and you are getting something new. Then I would have them feel like they walk downstairs to the smell of a wonderful breakfast and presents in shiny new wrapping paper sitting out in front of you. They would tear off the wrapping paper of one of their presents and it would be something they really wanted like a bright new laptop. Then they would take a bite of the wonderful breakfast that their mom made. They would be incredibly happy. Then the amazing memory would end.


The Ideal Teacher by Michiko

In Mrs. Donnelly’s language arts we are reading a book called The Giver. It is about an ideal society. I think an ideal teacher would have to be strict but at the same time nice and kind to you. I think an ideal teacher would not just get mad at you for no reason, I think that they should be supportive and patient. At the same time, if they were only nice to you you may not learn much so I think that they should be sort of strict with your work but encouraging if you do a good job. Also, I think if teachers give out treats like candy when you do something good, I think it would encourage you to do better because if you do you can get something you want. That is what I think an ideal teacher should be like.


Community Service by Michiko


At the Durham Academy Middle School we had a community service day. Our advisory went to the Durham Rescue Mission Thrift Store. When we got there we were told to go to racks of clothes and make sure they were all the same size. Then we organized the clothes by color. My friend Kay and I went over to the baby clothes section. We took all of the price tags off and put an X over the regular tags so that the workers would know which ones to put on discount. I felt really good having the chance to help other people who need things more than we do. Doing that for other people made me appreciate what I have and want to help other people more than before. I think that doing community service is a great way to help other people and when you are done you have a great feeling knowing you helped people.


The Giver Assignment by Michiko


During our language arts class we are reading the book The Giver by Lois Lowery. In the book your career is chosen for you by people who watch what you do in your free time. I think if someone choose my career for me by watching what I do in my free time and what I like I think I would be a nurturer because I think little kids are adorable. I think watching them for one year would be a fun job. Also playing with them would be fun. That is why I think if I got an assignment in The Giver I would be a nurturer.


The Westing Game by Michiko






In the 6th grade Language Arts classes we read The Westing Game. It is about a man who was very rich named Sam Westing. One day his heirs found out that he was dead. They all gathered in a room for the reading of his will. In his will he says that he was murdered and the murderer was one of his heirs. He pairs up the heirs and gives each pair $10,000 and some clues to find the murderer. Throughout the book many surprising twists and turns come up. It is funny and interesting at the same time. I highly recommend this cozy mystery.


The Hero Books by Michiko

Photo taken by Mrs. Donnelly

In the Durham Academy 6th grade Language Arts class, we made books about our heroes. My hero is my mom. During this project we cut paper out to illustrate one scene that we remember with our hero. We also wrote three mini stories about our hero. Our books were displayed in the Frank Gallery in Chapel Hill for our heros to come and see. A few days ago my mom and I went to the Frank Gallery to see the hero books. When she saw the book I made about her she was so happy. I was very excited that my mom was so happy about seeing the hero books. I really enjoyed the project and my favorite part was seeing my mom look at the book for the first time.

Lady or the Tiger? by Michiko

Which one should I do, I thought. She told me to go to the right. What if the tiger was in the door to the right? I could try to fight it, but I may still die. If a lady is in the door, I will be forced to marry her and maybe never get to see the princess again. I looked up giving her a thankful look, but to my surprise she was gone. What if she didn’t want to see me die because the tiger was behind the door? What if she left because she was too sad to see me marry the lady?

Suddenly, my mind realized that she wanted me to go to the door on the right, so if I died or married someone else and never got to see her again she would know that I made that choice because of her. I started to move to the right. Legs shaking, hands swinging, I walked quickly to the door on the right. I reached out to the door. He giant door handle was very cold. One more time I looked back up and she was back. I shut my eyes and pulled the door open.

I saw the princess, who looked just like a poor lady, a difference only I would notice. I looked around for the other lady but I did not see her. The princess whispered to me that the lady had taken her seat next to the king, and after the princess and I were married she would will get it back. I happily smiled. At once we were married.