19.12.08

FLVS



So, I figured that maybe I could take a little time out of my busy schedule to fulfill my promise of updating my blog every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. So here it is.

In order to graduate from the Florida school system, I have to have one more English credit, a gym credit, and a health credit. Of course, when we started planning on my coming to Ecuador and leaving the IB system, which exempted me from these requirements, no one told us this, and so now I'm stuck having to get them from the Florida Virtual Schools system. Fun fun fun. Basically, my class list as of right now is Advanced Placement English Language and Composition, Gym, and Advanced Placement Calculus AB, which I'm taking for fun. On to the fun stuff. I'll go in order.

Advanced Placement English Language and Composition (APELC): This class is an ├╝ber-fun example of how the inefficiency of the Florida School System kills everything that is good and sweet in my life. APELC is a "traditional pace" class, meaning it has two semesters of eighteen weeks each, or about four months, with the first semester ending on January Fifth, and the second semester ending in May, on the day of the APELC exam. This, by synthesis of knowledge, means that the first semester begins, for a student to be "on pace," as my teacher likes to say, in September. So when did I get placed into the class, even though my request was filled at the right time? The end of October. Meaning that I'm running at a seven-week defecit before I even start. And do I get extra time to make up for the time that was never given to me in the first place? No. I have to be finished by January Fifth, and for every two weeks behind I am, they knock off a letter grade. So, by doing just what is expected of me, and acing every assignment, I get a D. But, luckily, I am totally awesome (see below post about getting into MIT Early Admission), so this doesn't present much of a problem for me. Case In Point: since Wednesday, I've done twelve assignments, or roughly 15% of the semester, when the weekly requirement is four assignments. I intend to have twenty assignments done by Sunday. When I told my APELC teacher that (we talked, since I had an oral assessment on The Great Gatsby and some excerpts from Henry David Thoreau), she was like, "How did you do that?" Same response to me saying that I read The Great Gatsby in one night (which I did). Sometimes, when people come into contact with so much awesomeness, it burns out their eyes. But there is no charge for awesomeness. Or for handsomeness. My mom says I shouldn't get a big head, but I say that if there's anything worth getting a big head about this early in my life, it's probably getting into MIT early. But the class isn't all bad. I enjoy doing some of the assignments, like writing about how I'm declaring independence from the tyrrany of Florida Virtual Schools, and I did enjoy reading The Killer Angels, but some of the work is just annoying. The teacher's nice enough, though, Ms. Wasser. She, and my other teachers, tend to cut me some slack since I'm in Ecuador.

Gym: Whenever I tell people I'm taking Gym online, I usually get the same question: "How exactly do you take gym online?" Answer: I'm not really sure. I'm learning about flexing right now. Most of it is telling the teacher, Coach Lofgren, or Logfren, or Longfriend, or something, what you did to exercise. I'm thinking of just making it up. He wouldn't know. (Just kidding, Mom.) The Coach is a really nice guy. I got pretty behind in my other two classes, and so I asked him if I could get some time to catch up in those classes, and he rolled the clock back on my course to week one. Which is good, because apparently, the administrators are going through and ejecting anyone who's three weeks behind or hasn't turned in an assignment for three weeks. Without saying anything to us about it. Yeah. The Florida School System is garbage (day).

Advanced Placement Calculus AB (APCAB): So, because my mom thought that it'd be fun for me to take Calculus, I get a do-over on derivatives and integrals. I took the International Baccalaureate Calculus Standard Level (IBCSL), which covers almost exactly the same topics as APCAB, so I get a nice re-introduction to topics I learned a year ago. However, since APCAB does include more information than IBCSL, like trapezoidial sums that were a major part of the APCAB test last year, I can't go on to Advanced Placement Calculus BC, the second part of the two part class. And, since I took the APCAB test last year and scored a three out of five, I guess there's no harm in taking the APCAB test again, but better prepared. One of the most awesome things about this class is that it gives me access to a program called MathType. For anyone who has ever tried doing math homework in Microsoft Word (MSW), you know what I mean when I say typing equations into MSW is horrificly difficult. Microsoft fixed this somewhat with MSW 2007, but it's still garbage (day). MathType is the answer to everything I ever wanted in doing math on the computer. It's got a wonderful system for putting in every mathematical symbol one could possibly want, all correctly spaced and italicized and everything. With every assignment, there are a few extra problems that have to be typed up/scanned and turned in online, and writing them is the most enjoyable experience of my whole FLVS career. Maybe one day, my infaturation with this program will die out, but that day is a long ways away. Also on the plus side, since I know this stuff already, it's not that hard to turn out ten, twenty assignments to catch up to where I need to be. This class is taught by Irene Payne. I wonder if her father was in the military, where he may or may not have worked his way up to the rank of Major (pun).

I take a shotgun approach to FLVS, which is where I leave everything off for a while, then do thirty assignments for one single class in a row without stopping, switch to the next class and do thirty assignments, and so on and so forth, until I'm caught up all the way. This is probably the wrong way to do it, but that's probably not going to change until next semester, when I'm all caught up in APELC and APCAB and can work at a reasonable pace.

So, that's about all I have to say about FLVS for now. The above picture of the Help button is the fourth result from Google Image search for "FLVS". The first result is some really weird looking blonde teacher, and the ninth one is an advertisement for an "OLD SCHOOL PARTY" called Love Injection, featuring a black woman in an afro wig dancing. Yeah, the seventies were weird. Why do we want to go back? Why?

Thanks to Ahana Datta and my mother for commenting, even though I don't know you. Ahana, that is. Yes, I know you, Mom. And no, it's not surprising that I don't have many comments on my blog. After I took a month-long hiatus to write my novel, people stopped coming. I'm glad that other people are taking an intrest though that don't know me.

Also, I Really Love Acronymns, and I usually say them as though they were words, rather than saying the letters (like Ap-Cab and Ay-Pelk).

Ciao!

4 comments:

Tom said...

Glad you're on a high, but you should listen to your mother. ;p

Anonymous said...

congrats on MIT...

Check out LaTeX for math equations, it far surpasses MathType.

Keri said...

Oh man, I remember FLVS. I took 5 classes through it in HS, including Health.

If I remember correctly, they should base whether or not you're on pace starting from the day they accept your request. In the case of AP classes, they're supposed to adjust each week accordingly so you don't have to cram four months' worth of material into two months.

But the only AP I took through FLVS was Macro, which was a term long, and I took it first semester, so it was easy to shift everything over four weeks. So I could be wrong.

Oh, yeah, and congrats on getting in EA!

blackgirlart said...

Hello Jacob. This is your dad. I think you are getting a little bigheaded. cut your teachers some slack. They can't possibly live up to your expectations based on your experience from me teaching you everything you know.

PS. The painting is really good! What the??????? You should paint more. And also keep writing. I enjoyed it a lot.