TV and Movies

When you think of the word entertainment, what comes to mind? Most likely your favorite TV show or your new favorite movie. Today I am going to tell you about the evolution of television, and my thoughts about it.  It all started with photographs, then moving pictures were developed, then silent films, and finally; movies and animation.


First Moving Pictures:

The first ever moving picture was made by Eadweard Muybridge in 1880.  He was the first person to figure out how to make pictures move like real life.  He set up a whole row of cameras with trip wires, so that when the wires were tripped, the camera would take a picture.  He had a horse and rider run in front of the cameras, capturing a whole bunch of pictures of a running horse.  Then he played the film in one of his inventions; the zoöpraxiscope, giving the illusion of an actual moving horse (see the moving picture above). I found this interesting video on how the Zoopraxiscope works.


Developments and Innovations:

Over the next couple of years, innovators took the moving picture idea and ran with it.  George Eastman invented a type of film to replace the glass plates that had limited photographers so much, and eventually, innovators figured out how to make a camera that recorded motion onto a roll of film. This produced what they called silent films. Short movies without sound (most were less than 1/2 and hour long).  By 1928, sound was introduced, and now, since it was more enjoyable to watch, film makers started making full length movies. The well loved Mickey Mouse debuted in 1928 with it’s first episode called Steamboat Willie

In 1931 Merrie Melodies was created making the characters of Bugs Bunny, Yosemite Sam, Porky pig, Donald Duck, and many more nationwide favorites. The 1930’s and 40’s saw much improvement in the quality of movies.  In the mid 1930’s color was added, and over the next couple of decades, television would become the most popular form of entertainment out there.  In the 1960’s, people had figured out how to do computer animation in movies.  For a long time, it was only used for short periods in movies (such as a car flying down a hill at break-neck speed), but by the 1970-80’s when the animation was becoming better,  filmmakers were using it more and more in movies such as Star Wars and Star Trek.  In 1997, the first computer generated 3D movie (to be seen with 3D glasses) was debuted.


My Thoughts:

Today, we can watch people live on our TVs from across the globe, see videos from outer space, and watch how to do practically anything on YouTube.  While I enjoy watching a good movie, I also know that people waste a whole lot of time watching things instead of doing things.  Kids nowadays go watch their favorite show instead of going outside and playing a game with the neighbor kids a lot of the times. Another bad thing about movies is all the crap that they have in them now.  It’s hard to find a wholesome family movie that upholds good morals and ideals instead of making heroes out of the bad guys, promoting rebellion, and making immorality look good and “cool”.  I don’t want to make it sound like I’m all against movies and TV, and don’t get me wrong; there are thousands of amazing movies out there, it’s just that you have to use a lot of discernment and wisdom sifting through all the trash to find a movie that you would actually want yourself or your kids to watch.


Anyways, in conclusion to today’s essay, movies and TV are truly a great invention, and can be used to bring a good message to the world.   Here is a great movie if y’all need one to watch: Fireproof


More Literature Analysis of a Knight of the White Cross

In my last essay I talked about the setting and style of the book assigned for English, so today I’ll be writing about the character development and plot.


The Plot development of A Knight of the White Cross, by G.A. Henty

As I said in my last essay, most of Henty’s books pretty much all have the same base story. A handsome, strong, young man rises in fame and fortune and becomes a hero to the country. They normally end up with the fella’ marrying a gal that he rescued from some terrible thing. In A Knight of the White Cross, a young man named Gervaise joins the Order of St. John, in the magnificent city of Rhodes. He has a good thinking head, as well as being a great warrior at a young age (due to the training he received ever since he was a small child). He is a Page to the Grand Master for 3 years, before becoming a professed knight. Soon after, he was sent on a galley with a bunch of other knights. They encountered 5 or 6 pirate ships that they eventually captured with the help of two other galleys that were also on patrol. While out on the ocean, Gervaise showed himself worthy of being dubbed a real Knight upon their return. In later events, Gervaise did lots of things that earned him great renown including capturing 13 pirate ships and destroying 10 more with only one galley. He was a favorite with the Grand Master and all his fellow knights. He took part in the defense of Rhodes during the famous siege of Rhodes. In the end of the book, he marries a girl from Genoa and lives happily ever after.

Character Development

Really the only characters that develop enough to mention are Gervaise, his best friend Ralph Harcourt, and Lady Claudia (the girl he marries). Gervaise starts out being a 13-year-old boy, working as Page to the Grand master of the Order of St. John. Later on, he becomes a professed knight, then a real knight, the captain of a galley (at the age of 17), a slave (he got captured, but then escapes), and then finally a married man. Sir Ralph Harcourt starts out as a professed knight and becomes a real knight at the same time as Gervaise. He is 1st mate to Gervaise on his galley, and eventually, gets awarded with the command of his own galley. Lady Claudia is first introduced in the book as a serious 14-year-old girl. She isn’t talked about a lot since she lives in a whole different country than Gervaise, but she’s talked about enough to know that as she became a woman, she was the beauty of Genoa, and refused many offers for her hand in marriage. When Gervaise asks her to marry him, she accepts and becomes his wife.


3 Forms of Literature

Lately I have been learning about all the different types of literature, and so today I’m going to be telling you about 3 of them. The first one that I am writing about will be Novels, the second, short stories, and then the third and final will be Novellas.


#1. Novels

Novels are one of the most popular form of literature around. The definition is “a long prose narrative that describes fictional characters and events usually in the form of a sequential story”.  (If you don’t know what prose means, it is a “written or spoken language in its ordinary form without metrical structure”).  So, in other words, a novel is a book that is written in normal, every-day, language.  Some famous novels are Huck Finn, by Mark Twain, To Kill a Mocking Bird by Harper Lee, Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen, and The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgeson Burnett.


#2. Short Stories

Short stories are also written in Prose, “making use of plot, resonance, and other dynamic components to a far greater degree than is typical of an anecdote, but far lesser than a novel”.  Short stories are not a certain word length, yet they are not super long.  Definitely shorter than a Novel, but longer than an Anecdote.  Some popular short stories are Gift of the Magi, by O. Henry, Rip Van Winkle, by Washington Irving, and The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County, by Mark Twain.


#3 Novellas

A novella is kind of like the bridge between a novel and a short story. It has fewer conflicts than a novel, but more complicated ones than a short story.  Some examples of Novellas are A Christmas Carol, by Charles Dickens, The Old man and the Sea, by Ernest Hemingway, and War of the Worlds, by H.G. Wells.

The Theme of Treasure Island, by Robert Louis Stevenson.


The theme of a book is the message, moral, or main point of the book.  Today I am going to be telling you about the theme of the book Treasure Island, by Robert Louis Stevenson.  I hope you enjoy it!

Treasure Island is a pretty cool book by itself, but if you dig a little bit deeper, there is a moral to the story.  Personally, I think that the moral is to be smart with who you hang out with, and before you trust someone with anything important, get to know him or her well first. For instance, in the book, Doctor Livesley entrusted the choosing of the crew of the Hispaniola to Long John Silver, whom he had just met a few days before.  This was a huge mistake, because he went and hired all of his pirate buddies who helped him with the mutiny after they arrived at treasure island.  During the whole thing, before the mutiny Long John acted perfectly normal and good, but when they got onto the island, he became a dangerous person. He actually even murdered a few of the true members of the crew.

That is my take on the theme of Treasure Island. Have you read the book before? What did you think the moral was?  Let me know in the comments box!


Never Say Die |Outline

Never Say Die is a book written by  Will Hobbs.  It is about a fifteen-year-old Inuit boy named Nick that lives in Canada.  He is an avid hunter, and he puts his skills to good use when he goes on a month-long expedition with his older half brother, and they lose all of their gear in a rafting accident. It wasn’t clear what year the book was set in, but I’m pretty sure it was 2013.

The Exposition

The exposition (introduction) in Never Say Die is in the first chapter when Nick Thrasher is hunting Caribou. He shoots a big bull, butchers it, and loads it into his pack. then starts walking the three miles back home.  When he is almost to his boat, he gets charged by a huge bear.  The bear is too close for Nick to be able to shoot it.  Plus, this bear isn’t any normal bear. It’s half Polar bear, half Grizzly. The bear rips Nick’s pack off of his back with one swipe of its massive paw and busies itself with eating the caribou meat.  Nick manages to get away with his life. He was lucky, though. If the bear’s paw would’ve gone 2 inches further down, Nick’s back would’ve been totally ripped open.  The bear was nicknamed a “Grolar bear”.

The Rising Action

The rising action starts when Nick gets a letter from his half-brother Ryan who he’s never met before, asking him to come on a month long expedition with him to “Hunter’s Paradise”.  This is a place where the game is incredibly abundant.  Ryan is a writer/photographer for the National Geographic Magazine. They want him to get pictures and stories of the climate change, and its effects up in Canada.  Ryan is also a whitewater rafting guide. Anyways, Nick decides to go with him, but Ryan wouldn’t let him bring his gun.  On their first day out, Ryan is busy taking pictures of a grizzly bear crossing the river that they are rafting on, that he doesn’t look ahead.  The raft hits a huge sheet of ice that spans the whole river.  The raft flips up, throwing Nick and Ryan out. They get swept under the ice, where they couldn’t breathe, but they miraculously escape. Unfortunately, they are on opposite sides of the river, and it’s too dangerous to try to cross.  They start traveling down-river, trying to keep in sight of each other. Eventually, Ryan and Nick reunite and find the raft. Most of their gear was dry, including their GPS, and Satellite phone. After getting to be right smack in the middle of a heard of 1500 Caribou, and getting lots of great pictures, Nick and Ryan decide to head home.


The climax is when Nick and Ryan are rafting down the river, and the see the feared Grolar Bear.  He has just attacked 2 other rafters and they are pretty sure that he killed them both.  They hightail it out of there.  Later that day, a huge storm breaks. Thunder, lightning, rain, and then snow.  Nick remembers a small cabin that his grampa had told him about, that was close to where they were.  They take shelter in it until the storm subsides.  The next day, they go outside to check on the damage that the storm had done.  Before they head out, Nick grabs an old harpoon that was hanging on the wall.  Outside, they walked to the beach that was a short ways away.  Nick and Ryan saw two polar bears that had drowned in the storm and had washed up on the beach.  Then, they noticed another bear. This one was alive, and eating the other bears. It was the Grolar bear.  The bear charges them. After mauling Ryan, he turned to Nick. Nick grabbed the harpoon, aimed and launched it with all of his strength at the massive beast’s chest.  The bear stood up tall on its hind legs and then fell with a thud to the ground. Dead. Ryan wasn’t fatally wounded, so Nick helped him to the cabin, cleaned his wounds, and bandaged them up.

Falling Action/Resolution

The helicopter that was scheduled to come pick Ryan and Nick up came, and took them back home.  Ryan wrote his story for National Geographic, and Nick returned to normal life in Canada. That’s pretty much the end!


6th grade RPC English Course Summary

Last year, I started doing the Ron Paul Curriculum. I really enjoyed it, and my favorite subject was English.  Today, I’m going to be giving you a summary of the course, and what my favorite and least favorite books were.

So, the course was divided into two “subjects”. First, there was either 1,2, or 3 weeks of Literature taught by Mr. Bradley Fish, and then, after the Literature came an equal part of grammar, taught by Mr. Luke Mullins.  At the end of each week, there is a writing assignment.  Most of the time, they were supposed to be 1-2 page essays.  Once and a while, there was something different like a book report, creative writing, or a research paper.  My favorite writing assignment was probably either the research paper or the creative writing about a book that we read.

The selection of books that Mr. Fish chose was okay, but I definitely didn’t love all of them. Some of them seemed more aimed at a 10-year old’s interests.  Here is the list of books that were assigned:

    1. The Railway Children by E. Nesbit
2. Hans Brinker and the Silver Skates by Mary Mapes Dodge
3. The Cat of Bubastes by G. A. Henty
4. Around the World in Eighty Days by Jules Verne
5. A Wonder-Book for Girls and Boys by Nathaniel Hawthorne
6. Tanglewood Tales by Nathaniel Hawthorne
7. Swiss Family Robinson by Johann Wyss
8. The Story of the Treasure Seekers by E. Nesbit
9. Just So Stories by Rudyard Kipling
10. Call of the Wild by Jack London

My Favorite 3 books were The Cat of Bubastes by G. A. Henty,  Around the World in Eighty Days by Jules Verne, and Swiss Family Robinson by Johann Wyss.   My 3 least favorite were A Wonder-Book for Girls and Boys by Nathaniel Hawthorn, Tanglewood Tales by Nathaniel Hawthorne, and The Story of the Treasure Seekers by E. Nesbit.  My absolute favorite book was The cat of Bubastes.  It was one of the two or three exciting books in the reading list.

Overall, I liked the Literature lessons better, just because I don’t enjoy grammar at all…  I did learn a lot in the grammar section, and I really enjoyed writing the research paper that was assigned in the grammar part of the class.


My very first writing assignment:


One of my better essays for this course: