This unit, How We Organize Ourselves (HWOO), interests me because I can investigate into different public spaces, compare them and find out more about them. This interests because I know I always visit public spaces, but I never think about what a public space really is, or how it lets people connect, etc. However, in this unit, I am able to go to different public spaces and look at what they are, the purpose of it, how people establish a sense of community. This also interests me because when I compare the information that I find from different public spaces, I can see which ones are considered good public spaces and which ones aren’t. Another thing that interests me about this unit is finding out how public spaces can actually help people connect because when I usually visit public spaces, I don’t notice how people can connect with each other in a public space, such as, the bus stop. The last thing that interests me about this unit is how public spaces can be used. In art class, we are going to use a public space to create public art, which is art that everyone can see. I am interested in this because I can see how art can be created in a public space, and how/if it can help people connect in that space.
“Societal decisions made about waste management affect communities and the environment.”
Recently, we finished our fourth unit, How We Organize Ourselves. During this unit, I learnt about the different waste management strategies that we have: landfills, compost, dumping, recycling, incineration and reduce/reuse. I also learnt about the different impacts that these waste management strategies have on the communities and environment.
During this unit, I learnt about the advantages for dumping, even though it is illegal. For example, open dumping (dumping on the streets) can let poor people earn some money because they can pick up the rubbish and sell it to other people (eg. recycling centers). Also, ocean dumping (dumping in the ocean) can help slowly help create more land and more reefs, which means that there will be more habitats. Recycling also has some disadvantages, such as the extra pollution that there will be when more factories are built and when more trucks have to come and go for the extra recycling bins. There are a lot more advantages and disadvantages of different waste management strategies.
I really learnt a lot during this unit and I realized how much trash we threw away each year. Before, I never really thought about the different waste management strategies, their advantages and disadvantages and what happened to our trash after we threw it away. Now that I know more about it, I also think about it more. I think this was one of the units where I learnt the most because I did a lot of research, and I didn’t really know about it before. This was also a really interesting unit.
I liked going to the S.E.N.T. landfill during this unit because I was able to learn a lot from that field trip and use it in my summative assessment later on. I also enjoyed it because it was a great experience to see how landfills operate. I also liked going to the Eco Park, and learning about plastic recycling.
Some of the skills that I developed throughout this unit are: research skills, communicating skills, thinking skills and writing skills. I developed my research skills by learning how to choose the right type of graphic organizer. For example, because this time we needed to research 4 different things for each strategy, I chose a four column chart to organize my information. I developed my communicating skills by giving speeches and having more confidence every time. I learnt that while giving speeches, you need to have good posture, a loud and clear voice and eye contacts. I think that I slowly improved on all of those skills because of all of the practise that I was able to have. I developed my thinking skills by writing persuasive texts and arguing for different sides, which helped me improve dialectical thinking, such as “The CDNIS Cafeteria is a Valuable Place in Our School”. Collecting information from different places and then putting it altogether would help me practice using the skill: synthesis. I also improved my writing skills by writing a lot persuasive texts and finding out what I needed to do to make it better each time.
I hope that everyone will realize how much trash we throw away each day into the landfills and how much trash we can actually recycling or reuse. If we all recycling and reuse, then the amount of trash going to the landfills will be reduced and there will be less pollution. We will be living in a safer environment, and have better health.
Remember to always Reduce, Reuse and Recycle!
Here are a few videos that are about trash:
The Story of Stuff
Journey of Our Waste
Journey of a Plastic Bag
The S.E.N.T. Landfill(in Tseung Kwan O), which stands for The South East New Territories Landfill, is a place where not everyone can visit. Luckily, today our class was able to visit that place and see how the landfills work and learn about Hong Kong’s Waste Management.
When we arrived at the landfill, we first went into a room for a Powerpoint presentation about the waste management in Hong Kong and how landfills work. During the presentation, I learnt a lot. Before, I thought that Hong Kong only had 3 landfills: The North East New Territories Landfill, The West East New Territories Landfill and The South East New Territories Landfill. Well, these are the only 3 active landfills, but there are actually 13 more that have already been filled up and are now being used for building parks, recreational fields, etc. Also, because of how much waste we, Hong Kong citizens, produce – 5000 tonnes each day – the 3 landfills are predicted to be filled up by 2015-2020. Because Hong Kong is just a small island, there won’t be a lot more space to make new landfills, so we should start recycling more and using fewer things that aren’t environmentally friendly. Hong Kong is already making people pay HKD 50¢ for any plastic bags they have to use when shopping. I think this is a good idea because people don’t want to pay for plastic bags so they will use recyclable bags. Also, from the presentation, I also learnt when a landfill is filled up and something is being built on top of it, there is a liner system around it, keeping all the toxins and smell inside so that it won’t pollute the air outside. There are sharp objects that may break through the liner system, so under the liner system, there are rocks for protection. In addition, the government is planning to build a high-technology incinerator from Japan that won’t affect the environment and our health because there will be a very small amount of dioxin that will be released. The heat from it can also be used for swimming pools and homes.
After the presentation was finished, we were able to tour around the landfill and see different parts, such as the flare, the water treatment plant and the tipping phase. The flare is a place where the gas is treated, while the water treatment plant is a place where the leachate – a liquid poison – becomes clean enough to put in the ocean. The tipping phase is where garbage is dumped off . The landfill operators have to make sure that they don’t affect their neighbors, so they use wind fences, which are basically fences to keep the garbage from blowing away from the landfill and into the surrounding streets, making it even worse. They also use deodorizers to keep the odor away.
I really liked this field trip because I was able to learn more about how landfills are operated and more about what the government is trying to do. This landfill made me realize how much trash we throw away each day and how we must start thinking about better ways to deal with our rubbish. I hope everyone will start recycling, reusing and reducing so that we can live in a more healthy and safe environment!
This week, we have been learning about persuasive writing. We wrote an argument about the cafeteria in school as a class. Now, we need to write the counter argument. Here is my persuasive text:
The CDNIS Cafeteria is a Valuable Place in Our School
Where can you find clean furniture and facilities, quick and efficient staff, great quality food as well as reasonable prices? Well, you can surely find all of those things in the cafeteria of the Canadian International School of Hong Kong. It is a very valuable place in our school where the staff are doing their best.
Firstly, the cafeteria is always tidy and sterilized. There is never any food left on the trays, utensils, chairs, tables and floors. When the staff clean it, it is dry and is never wet so that we won’t slip. The cafeteria is an important place for students to meet; therefore it needs to be and is cleaned regularly.
Secondly, although this school has 1600 students, the staff are still able to serve all of us quickly and efficiently. They organize everything so that things can run faster, by using baskets, trays, and the Student Card System. Making sure that everything runs as smoothly as possible is important. Chartwells is able to cook many meals quickly, and produce many snacks and drinks for all of us to buy. Also, there is enough space, tables and chairs in the cafeteria to serve more than one grade at a time. Even when two grades are seated, there are still some seats left.
In addition, the quality of the food that they serve is good. The meals are always well cooked and are warm when you receive them. They are tasty and healthy at the same time, showing that Chartwells can cook enjoyable and nutritious food. There is also always a variety of food everyday, including pasta, rice, pizza, noodles, and a lot more.
Last but not least, all the prices are reasonable. A meal at a restaurant is a lot more expensive even though the quantity may be the same. For example, a hot dog or sandwich at school is $15 but one at a restaurant may be two times that price. Also, the price is reasonable for the serving size. Furthermore, you can always get seconds or thirds without paying anymore. Some people may think that the snacks, drinks and meals are too expensive, but I think that they are wrong and they are reasonable and cheap.
In conclusion, the cafeteria of the Canadian International School of Hong Kong is a one of the most valuable parts of our school.