A Culmination of French Connection

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Over the past three school years (equivalent to two high school courses), my experience in World Language has been incredible. In this time, I’ve become so much more fluent, I’ve learned intricacies of the language, and I can speak well (at least in work-arounds).

I’m far from done with my French journey- in the close future, I’ll be taking French through High School (up to ECE French V), and we’ll see where it goes from there. As far as French Connection on 12 and Beyond, though, things are about to round a major corner.

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It All Adds Up: A Conclusion of Geometry

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It has been quite the year taking Geometry, but alas, with the new school year ahead, my lessons regarding such must come to an end. This will be the last It All Adds Up Geometry edition, and beginning with a monthly schedule this Fall, I’ll be moving on to Algebra II.

Thus, I must conclude this season with where we began: proofs. Proofs, as a refresher, are step-by-step ways to prove a mathematic hypothesis true. We’ve dealt with proofs at their basics, like in Algebraic Proofs | It All Adds Up, and then applied what we learned in geometry to proofs, like with definitions, triangles, and segment geometry.

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Book Review: The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn

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View the entire collection of 12 and Beyond’s book reviews here, and be sure to look out for more monthly reviews this Fall. 


The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is quite the read. And Mark Twain is quite the author.

Huck Finn was originally assigned to me as Summer Reading for school, and thus, I wish I had the chance to read Tom Sawyer previous to this. However, from this book alone, the relationship held by Tom and Huck can is clearly, well, peculiar. Fortunately, the novel does a beautiful job at incorporating various themes and qualities which make the novel so much more than just an adventure story.

The novel tackles so many different aspects of Finn’s life, that he as a character becomes so three-dimensional, and relatable in so many ways (although often to the extremes). For example, his paining relationship with his father, and how easily Huck became inculcated into his Father’s lifestyle, leaving all that truly mattered behind him, was difficult to read. Furthermore, Huck’s struggle with his inner morality in response to the influences of society portrays him as a person of true character.

In all, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is a story of careless adventure at its surface, and one of friendship and humility at its depths.

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In Tune: The Mama Mia Soundtrack

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In my efforts to expand my musical experience, I’ve explored music from the 80s to the 1800s, but the 70s was a decade that at first appeared too out of reach for me to fully grasp and appreciate, especially given modern music. That is, until I discovered the Mama Mia movies, the second of which we recently saw in theaters.

Granted, this is a stark contrast to the type of music I typically listen to, but the fun, upbeat, and careless nature of the music was quick to draw my attention and amusement. Not to mention, the soundtrack is all re-recordings of classic ABBA songs, a defining group of the 70s.

One of the best things about their music is that they are all unique in structure, lyrics, and melody, yet are reminiscent of the same origin, of freedom and radiance. That’s why they’re perfect for a soundtrack like Mama Mia- they go so well together, yet are so distinct, and tell their own story.

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A Perspective on French Culture

New French Connection LogoRecently, I read an article about how France voted to ban cellphone usage entirely in the school system, exemplifying yet another stark difference between American culture.

And I’m not saying that’s a bad thing- in fact, I’m very fond of the idea. There are many aspects in general that are very appealing in my eyes.

Over the past school year, we did a variety of research on French culture, especially involving daily routines, food, and the educational system, and comparing our countries brought many things to light.

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A Tail of a Lot of Kittens

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Welcome to the 2nd season of  ‘A Tail of Three Kittens’!

NOW with more kittens than ever! 😅

It’s been a while- and a lot has happened since. I think we ‘may’ have a bit of a cat problem. See, our backyard has always been National Geographic- with cats, coyotes, (yes- an excellent combination), chipmunks, and the like. Up until recently, though, it’s only been our immediate cat family: Callie, Macintosh, Goldie, and Nutmeg, along with a few other occurrences. Evidently, word has gotten around though, and our ‘family’ has grown- significantly.

Let’s get started.

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Les Misérables Book Review Volume II: Cosette

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View the entire collection of 12 and Beyond’s summer book reviews (and more) here, and be sure to read my Fantine book review too.

Three hundred pages into the [full-length] novel, Les Misérables’ second volume, Cosette, still maintains its overall grandeur and elegance, and intertwines the same elements and perspectives that truly define the novel.

In this volume, a captivating tale is told of Jean Valjean’s escape from prison after being recaptured, and further proves Valjean’s righteousness as he rescues Cosette from her abusive caretakers, the Thenardiers, all the while under the pursuit of the inspector, Javert. 

At the strongest points in the volume, the story is suspenseful and exciting to follow, and takes the reader on an incredibly detailed and elaborate adventure, with no intricacy left out. The viewpoints and relations of all characters provide the reader with an omniscient comprehension of the events, which only serves to strengthen the magnitude of the volume’s impact.

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F. Seitz Concerto No. 5 (Mvt 1)

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It would appear as if I enjoy music too much.

Each week, I seem to drone on about the same things: “the emotion”, “the power”, “the beauty”… and yet as I discover more and more, music of all types still continues to astound me.

And while I do regret some of my musical choices from the past (*cough*), I still find there’s so much intricacy and passion to be evoked from each piece, something that makes each work extraordinary. Now, if you knew me, you’d know I’m not a very critical person- at all, which certainly has its downsides. But there’s something about music that just gets to me…

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Finding Area of Polygons Using Trigonometry

New It All Adds Up LogoWe covered a lot in Geometry this year, and overall, I found trigonometry to be one of the easiest units. Once you’re familiar with the mechanics, it all comes down to calculation. However, its implementation can be a bit more complicated, like in finding the surface area of a 2D shape with more than four sides, but the process is actually pretty cool.

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