My Ignite presentation was on the Space Race between Russia and the USA. An Ignite presentation is a 5 minute presentation that is made up of 20 slides that advance automatically every 15 seconds. I enjoyed researching that time period because I find the Cold War interesting, even though a lot of the basis on why I find that interesting was spy movies. Recently during class, we had discussed different topics in history involving foreign policy, and a topic that came up was America’s competition with Russia. I decided to go out on a limb and have the Space Race be my topic for my ignite presentation.
There was so much I could research in depth about, but it made more sense for me to focus on the basic outline of what happened in order to point out the clear pattern of the competition driven advancements in the United States space program. The timeline itself could easily prove my point of the advancement in space travel being driven almost solely by competition with Russia and the Cold War.
As a school, being able to see Hidden Figures was amazingly because it was relevant to my topic, and it was really exciting. I began to get nervous because the entire school saw hidden figures and it gave all of my classmates some background on my presentation. I was afraid that they might not be as interested in my ignite presentation because they had already learned some information, but maybe that had got them more interested in the project. Many of them became more interested because of the movie, but many of their questions revolved around the movie, a topic that I did not study closely. I was not able to answer the questions surrounding the accuracy of the movie, but focusing solely on the events of the movie was not my goal, it was to explain a point about the entire Space Race. I enjoyed giving my presentation to my fellow classmates and teaching them about a topic that I had come to enjoy a lot through my research.
I also loved hearing about all of the other topics in which my classmates had interest, like Isabel and her fruit presentation. Id like to learn about some of their topics in more depth s the year goes on. I’m glad that we did these ignite presentation, and I hope that it continues.
“Live Long and Prosper” – Mr. Spock
At the beginning of the unit on immigration we read a book called The Arrival. It showed the struggles that many immigrants faced and why they decided to leave their home countries. It also showed the struggle that immigrants face when they come to a new country and do not know the language or the culture. Throughout the unit, I learned that immigration is much more than moving to a new country and having to learn a language. Immigrants struggle with discrimination and assimilation.
There is so much more to the struggle of assimilation than meets the eyes. Not all immigrants wanted to leave their home and start a new life in a new nation that has different customs than they do. America has a history of greatly encouraging immigrants to assimilate, and not accepting them if they choose to keep their culture. America has viewed itself has superior to other and it seems as though they believe that others come to America to be like them. That is not always so. In “Who Should Get In”, the author writes that many first generation immigrants do not fully assimilate, but second generation does. It is because of the fact that it is natural for people hold onto their roots and who they are. Some immigrants do not have a choice either, and they still love their home countries. Many are refugees of famine, war, or poverty. They are forced to leave the place they call home, and many times their family as well. They struggle with the choice of either losing their home or not fitting in.
There also has been so much fear that immigrants will change the culture of this country. Many people forget the fact that almost every American comes from somewhere other than the United States. This country was built by immigrants and has been called a melting pot for a reason. The culture is ever-changing in time and location. The atmosphere in Texas is different than New York or Florida, and that is what makes the country what it is. This country is made of the English, German, Irish, Italian, Chinese, Mexican, French, African, and so many other types of immigrants.
Immigration is more than just choosing to leave home because there are better opportunities in another country. It is full of struggles that many people do not realize they face.
Through the beginning of this unit there many things that have come up that have expanded my knowledge of immigration in the United States. One has been learning about the experiences of immigrant high schoolers in the film I Learn America. Many of them explained their reasoning for coming to the USA in the first place, and how they did not have a choice. I had always just assumed that they felt the same way about immigrating as their parents did. It makes sense that they might have wanted to stay because it was their home country and it was where all of their friends were, even if there was turmoil. It breaks my heart that people my age have to go through so many struggles, such as worrying about learning a new language or being deported, when the only thing I have had to worry about this year was school and my research paper. Whenever I thought about immigrants, I always thought about adults moving to a new country for a better life, not kids just like I am.
For over a century, immigrants have come to America in search of a better life. That is a pretty well known fact, even if we don’t exactly have streets made of gold, somehow people seem to think of the United States that way. I know that that seems to be the reason people immigrate here, but of course I also know that it is because of struggles in their own home countries. I still cannot seem to wrap my head around the fact that so many people want to be in this country, even when they know that they will face so many challenges. They know that it will be a struggle to get a green card, gain citizenship, adapt to the culture, speak the language, and get a job, but somehow, they are still set on this. Maybe it is because they have looked at all the people who have made the same voyage in the past and have succeeded greatly in life. Maybe they take this step because it is better than what they would have if they did not. I don’t know exactly why people immigrate to America, but they do, and they face all the challenges that meet them with courage and I am still so astonished by the ability to do that.