HSI Reflection: 10/10 would recommend.

Top 5 Lessons I will remember from this class:

1. Media will use your insecurities in order to get you to buy their products.

2. Some companies use what you like and share on social media to promote themselves.

3. People are influenced by what they see on the media and often try to change themselves to suit this unrealistic ideal of how people should look.

4. You can’t stop people from speaking their minds; banning a book only goes so far.

5. You can not multitask.

In my science class I learned a lot about the wilderness and how to be prepared for the outdoors. I also learned that CPR is really good for a lightning strike. Most of my learning in that class happened outside and some of it was just common sense things that people just don’t know. There are so many good memories I have of HSI. It’s hard to just choose one because I feel like it was all just so much fun. I know I’m going to encourage sophomores to come to HSI because it’s just such a good experience and it’s so worth getting up at six in the morning and going to bed super late.

Since being at HSI I have learned and grown as a person. I have become more outgoing (still a bit quiet but I’m working on it) and I have made lots of friends. I also learned that I can actually be on my own and be okay. I liked having the independence that I have here and because I didn’t have a room mate it almost made me feel like I was living on my own and I liked it. I mean the cool thing about HSI is that it stands for High School Institute but we aren’t treated like high school students. They treat us like college students. We don’t even have to ask to go to the bathroom. It definitely made me more confident about going to college, I’m excited.

If I could re-live HSI I would just get involved in everything. I stepped out of my comfort zone a lot but I would have just signed up for everything. I would probably try out the whole room mate thing because it would be cool to have one. I just really liked HSI and I feel really indifferent about leaving. I miss my family but I just want to stay here. I guess that’s normal. Bye :’)



I am not good at multitasking. I get way too distracted. I prefer to write notes by hand because I am not as good at typing and sometimes I type things that I don’t mean to type because I listen to things that are going on around me. During school my teachers don’t allow multitasking, they only allow things that are related to what we are doing in class. Phones are usually just not allowed at all because we have computer labs that we go to in order to type or make Power Point’s. They also have websites like YouTube and Facebook restricted to students. In the classrooms we have SmartBoards which are super fancy projector computers and it’s very advanced and they hate me. All technology hates me. I think pen and paper is just the easiest way to get your thoughts down and learn.

Outside of school I multitask all the time but I don’t always use technology to do that. I can be on the phone and do other things at the same time pretty well but I usually get distracted and have to focus on one thing. I hope multitasking becomes less common in school because it doesn’t really seem to have any benefits that I’m aware of. I think that some things can just wait. You go to school to learn and in college you are paying a pretty good amount of money to learn and if multitasking has been scientifically proven to be less effective, why would you do it?

Generation Like

In the video ” Generation Like” it was all about using the media in order to promote your company and make money. I thought it was crazy that so many people promote companies for free just by using the product. I didn’t really think that the people on YouTube and other social media networks had a strategy. I knew that them joining Facebook and other things made more people more aware of them but I didn’t know that they pay such close attention to what we like and what we talk about.

I think that using the media to promote yourself is a good idea because it’s such an important part of our lives and so many people are on social media. I don’t see it as unethical or inacceptable because we chose to be on social media and you make that information public. I can see why people would be uncomfortable because it’s almost like they’re using psychology to get us to use their product and people don’t like it when you try and plant ideas into their head without them even realizing you’re doing it. If people are okay with “selling out” then I think it’s fine. If someone wanted to wear a brand of shoes and try to get people to buy them they can. I don’t have that strong of an opinion.

Media and Body image

Body image is the ideal way that someone should look. I think it’s very fake and it all has to do with making money and making you feel like there’s always room for improvement. I don’t think that anyone should look at a magazine or a billboard and think “I want to look like that.” When you look at how body image has changed over the years it has evolved into this artificial portrayal of what a human should look like. Without plastic surgery it’s almost impossible to look the way people look in magazines.

Girls/women are supposed to be thin and tall. We find out about these ideal body images from the media which is where all of the photoshop and body altering comes from in the first place. Body image issues are becoming more relevant as well with males. Males are supposed to be ripped with muscles and look almost doll like. Personally, watching some of those videos it didn’t even look like a real person. It didn’t look like someone who you could just have a conversation with. I think you lose part of your character if you look exactly like everyone else. It’s attractive but it’s not at the same time because it looks so fake and generic.

I truly hope that no one grows up wanting to look like a Barbie. I don’t think the media should tell you how you should want to look and that it should just be up to you. Kids should definitely be aware of how the people in magazines and ads have been changed and they should understand at a young age that it isn’t real and it’s okay if you don’t look like a computer generated person. I saw an interesting video of a woman who took off all of the makeup from a Barbie and made it look more realistic and they asked kids what they thought of them and it was so interesting to see how different their opinions were. Someone also took the makeup off of Bratz dolls and it was interesting. Here’s the link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lG-7e1vaB18


Book Banning

The book And Tango Makes Three by Peter Parnell and Justin Richardson, they follow the lives of two male penguins that are a bit different than the other penguins. When mating season comes around these two particular penguins seem to be attracted to one another. They spend all of their time together and fall in love. There is just one problem, the other penguin couples are having babies and being both male, they can’t conceive a child. The man who works there notices this and blesses them with an egg that needed to be cared for. The two penguins are able to raise the penguin and it’s just a sweet story.

People want to ban this book because there is homosexuality in the book. People see homosexuality as a sin or an abnormality and some parents don’t want their children being exposed to the idea of homosexuality so they try to isolate their child from it by banning the book. Some people assume that if they are exposed to it that they are “planting a seed” or encouraging it. There are a lot of parents that feel that way about homosexuality but in this day and age there are so many people who have come out as being homosexual that there is a higher chance of someone actually having homosexual parents. Should we tell those children that they’re wrong for having homosexual parents? People who don’t want it banned feel that kids should be exposed to homosexuality because it does happen.

In my school we participate in Banned Book Week which is basically a week where we discuss banned books and censorship. We got to read a banned book and write a report on why it was banned and if we personally feel that book banning should even be allowed. It really does go against the first amendment. My freshman year in class I read To Kill a Mockingbird and I really enjoyed it. I think that the books that get banned usually portray real problems in society that people just don’t want to talk about. In my opinion book banning can be necessary only to an extent. If a parent doesn’t want their child reading a certain book than I think they have a right to ask that their child not but there are other kids in school who may want to learn about real problems and real life lessons. Shielding children just keeps them closed-minded.

News and Entertainment Use

We took a quiz on Current Events and I was really surprised at how much I didn’t know. I always figure that if important things are happening in the world that someone would make sure the word gets out. That isn’t the case though; the news that everyone knows about really doesn’t provide information about things like politics it just focuses on the things that are more interesting or eye catching. I’m sure if I actually looked up the news and kept up with what was going on in the world I would have a stronger opinion on politics and current issues.

I watch the news in the morning before school and usually they just talk about local issues like kidnappings and legalizing marijuana and things that really only pertain to that part of the state or the state as a whole (it’s out of Colorado). Any other important news my teachers show me. Most of my teachers like to inform us about ISIS because most of them believe that they are a potential threat and if we aren’t aware of it now us being “the future” we can’t be ignorant about an issue this huge. I don’t think ISIS is going anywhere anytime soon. I could definitely start to pay more attention to other issues around the world as well.

My parents like when we have our own opinions about politics and they don’t try to sway me in any way so I don’t have any restrictions on what I look up or anything like that, and they trust me to do what I need to do to pass classes. Most of the TV shows I watch are on Netflix and it doesn’t really interfere with my life in any big way, I watch it when I have free time. I still hang out with my friends and talk to people and go places.


Online Identity

I use Facebook, Snapchat, and Instagram most frequently. I use Facebook the most, so do my friends, and that closely correlates with the data. In the article it says 71% of teenagers ages 13-17 use Facebook most often and that seems right because almost everyone I know has one. For my online identity my mom wants me to be cautious about what I put out there and how people see me. With most social media networks you can find out a lot about someone just by looking the up. My mom also drills it into my head that anyone can see what you post so you have to be careful. I think that social media accounts are so common now that when you apply for a job or something along those lines that people will look you up and make sure that you are who you say you are. For example, If you were to apply for a job at a daycare and you just posted something like, “Man I hate kids but I need the money.” That really isn’t the smartest idea and some think it’s unfair when you don’t get hired because of things like this but your online identity is part of your personal identity too. You may feel that way and it’s good to express yourself but I think some people need to learn when to post and think a bit harder into what you’re saying and who may get offended. When people see the things that you post, especially because they can’t see you, they make assumptions that can sometimes be misleading.

Day 1 HSI

I had heard about HSI through one of my friends, she had heard about it on the announcements at my school. My friend told me I had four days to get everything in. When I told my teachers that I needed the recommendation in about two days they gave me a sideways look but luckily they both like me so they told me it wouldn’t be a problem. I definitely should have planned better. My essay was pretty great I wrote about one of the ski trips I went on. Couple months later I found out I got in to the program and I was pretty proud of myself because I pulled it together in about 3 days and originally the friend of mine who told me about it didn’t get in.

I have two classes: this class and a Humans in the Wilderness class. In my classes I hope I do learn to see things differently because I truly do think that anytime you put yourself in a new environment you grow and change. I know that sounds like a weird goal to have but media has a pretty big impact on society and I think it will be interesting to find out why and how. So far my experience at HSI has been good, I have met a lot of new people and I know the UW campus much better. Living in a dorm room is…interesting; I’m starting to get used to the daily routine of things.

Looking at the past blogs I can see that HSI had had a positive effect on many people’s lives. Multiple people had said that it had better prepared them for college and that they came out of it more outgoing and confident. I think it’s cool to see what they got to learn about and on some of the blogs their writing kind of seemed to improve as the weeks went by.