steam reflection-1 JIM ZHENG

1.)I picked steam over age online course because I was interested in design and maybe becoming an engineer, furthermore I found the concept of designing and making an object to be quite interesting and fun. Furthermore I think that steam offers a more complete subject then the online course since it is taught by teachers and requires teamwork skill rather then sitting somewhere and using a computer.

2.) the course so far has being fun, it challenges me in ways that other courses simply do not and for the most part can not, this is because steam unlike science, math and art despite having those in its name. This is because steam combines almost all subjects for one to create a project.

3.)communication with the group has being decent for the most part. There isn’t any major problems as the communication I guess it could be better but for this project it will suffice

4.)right now our roles aren’t decided, but it’s likely that Alex will compose the music whilst long plans and I will handle construction

5.)we purchased 224cm worth of metal pipes which have being cut into smaller pieces. We still need a lot of cardboard for the frame, some 3d printed items for certain parts and a lego battery motor along with a large amount of time to make the music box

6.)overall I am willing to believe we will do extremely well. We will probably accomplish the goal because the project is overall not too hard. This is because firstly the construction is relatively simplistic secondly because the steam aspects will

7.)we will teach ourselves how to make music through trial and error, since Alex is a music student he will also offer valuable information around music. The trial and error process will likely be us repeatedly hitting one of the metal tubes until we know what sound it makes. After knowing what sounds it makes we will arrange the sound into music

Steam Reflection – Long Nguyen


  1. I wasn’t interested in any of the courses presented. They may have been important perhaps, and perhaps it takes three months to finish (or something like that I think), but I don’t think I would have been interested and dedicated enough to spend the amount of hours necessary to finish the course. So I decided to do STEAM.
  1. I have so far found this course to be fun, I guess. I found going to get the materials needed for our music box sort of fun. I think that it’ll be kind of painful to begin the building, but also probably going to be fun. I think that it’ll be painful to make the small pieces to trigger the notes because their small pieces of cardboard, which might not be that strong. I think it’ll be fun because it’ll be cool to see it work and standing.
  1. I think its alright, we talk in class about what were going to do. Thats about the only place we talk about this project at so far.
  1. I guess were going to work as a group, though I’m not sure. I think this because I think we would work on building it, making the music, and coding it together, but we have some roles like for example, Jim is taking the pictures.
  1. We purchased eight metal pipes, each of different lengths. We now will be needing some sturdy cardboard, quite a lot of cardboard I think, and a motor. We might also need to 3D print some parts to make sound for the music box, and we need time to build the music box itself.
  1. I think we’ll do ok overall. I think ok overall because I think we will be able to build the general idea of it, but the music might be a problem. One reason why the music might be a problem is because the music box is supposed to allow something to be customizable, which I think is the music. So, then we might want to figure out ways to make the coding be adjustable without it breaking. Another reason I think will be a problem is the size of the cylinder. I say this because the cylinder has be big enough to hold lots of notes or coding things on it so that it can play music without it sounding off I guess, and it can’t be too big because it might create some long time periods between the notes sound.
  1. I guess through youtube. Ill look at how other people create the music for music boxes if they use cylinders to code. I want to look at those people because they know to create some music that an be cycled over and over, like how ours should work I think. So, then we can understand how to trigger the sound.

Reflection STEAM: Tommy Meng


I chose STEAM over online courses because I think STEAM is a course where you can learn all kinds of skills during class time. We need to solve the problem by ourselves, during the process of solving the problems, we learn. I think these skills that we will learn in STEAM are very important in future. Use solutions in the face of challenges and problems. I think steam is a good practical skill and can greatly affect my future. These are the reasons why I will choose STEAM.

In the first few weeks, I think this course is a very “independence” course. We have gained a lot of freedom. This vary surprise me. We can decide what we want to do and create them with our knowledge and the solution we found out. Use many skills in life to face challenges and overcome challenges. Which is what I really enjoy during class.

In our group, I think we have shared our thoughts and ideas very well. Share our thoughts, we are all friends together, so we won’t hide our idea. We just spit out any thoughts, even if it’s not that good. I think this is good communication with group members.

I think we’re work as a team throughout the project because I think each of us has different ability in different field, and when we are together, I believe we will success.

On the day we went to old Shekou, we only bought a water pipe for the music box project. Through the old Shekou, I can see that many materials can be used for larger projects / builders. In our project, we need to make small and accurate measurements of the materials used in the project. We still need music boxes, pumps, propellers and gears.

I think through our teamwork, each of us can help our group to create something unique for our project. I think we can follow our procedure and create the project we found out, but I think we’re going to face challenges in the process, which we have to solve it through the process. Finally, I believe we can create a best music box.

In order to program our music, I think we will be watching YouTube video and also read some helpful webpages to help us program our music.

STEAM Reflection (Brendan He)








Purchasing materials in Old Shekou





STEAM Reflection

I chose STEAM over an online course is because I think STEAM is a course that you can learn a variety of skills throughout this course. For example, building skills, math skills, science skill, etc.… All of these skills are required throughout this course and I think these are skills that are very important in life. Finding solutions when facing challenges, also using skills to solve problems. Overall, I think STEAM is an excellent course that practices skills that can profoundly affect my future. Throughout the first few weeks of steam, I think this course is a very creative and interactive course. We get much freedom which I very cherish and is also a unique concept that is within this course. We are able to decide what we want to do and use our creativity and knowledge to create them. Using many skills that we use in life to face challenges and overcome them. I look forward to more new projects we can accomplish during this course!

Within our group, I think we’ve shared our own ideas and thinking pretty well with each other. We aren’t afraid or nervous to share out any thoughts we have; we spit out any ideas we have even it’s not so great. I think the key to good communication is the be honest! We share out everything that goes through our minds. I think throughout this project we will be working as a group because I believe we each have different skills and when this is put together I believe can create something that unique.

The day we went to old Shekou, our group only purchased a tube used for the water in our music box project. Walking through old Shekou, I could see many materials that could be used for more significant projects/construction sites. In our circumstances, we need small and precise measurements of materials that are used in our project. We are still missing a music box, water pump, propeller and also gears. I think with our teamwork, each and one of us can contribute something unique to our project. I think this we can mostly complete what we have planned out. I say this primarily because I think during the process we will face challenges that will maybe make us change our tactics. In the end, I’m sure we can create a music box that is one of a kind! I think we will learn to program music by watching youtube tutorials or asking experts at our school on how to program music.

Steam Reflection (Cindy Han)

  1. Why did you choose STEAM over an online course?

I chose STEAM because I think an online course cannot ‘face to face’ communicate with my teacher and discuss with my classmates. Also, I prefer to study in the classroom with others rather than using a laptop to study on an online course.

  1. How have you found the course so far?

This is the first time that I make a big interesting project, which I make a music box, this is a big challenge for me. Although that is really difficult to find the materials of my project, I still try my best to build it.

  1. How would you say the communication is going within your group?
  • Create a We-chat group to chat with each other (for share our ideas and information)
  • Make a list/plan for the distribution of our works.

In our group, we just have two people(me and Rosie), so our opinions are easily reconciled. We were making a final design together, and then we discussed how to buy the materials and distribute our works.

  1. Are you going to work as a group or will you delegate roles?

I will delegate roles with my partner, cause that will be efficient and quick. Team works are better than the individual, and other people can give me suggestions when we were working.

  1. What did you purchase in Old Shekou the other day and what else will you be needing?

In our group, actually, we have bought all of the things already except the iron wire(for making the key of the music box). Finally, we found the iron wire in the last street that we went to the Old Shekou, we spent about half an hour to found it. And now our materials are all already.



  1. Overall, how do you think you will do? Will you accomplish the goal and why?

I think we will finish the goal except making key this part. Because the iron wire is really difficult to cut in small pieces, maybe we will change it to copper sheet later.

  1. How will you teach yourselves to program your music?
  • Choose a melody that we like.
  • Use 3D printer to print it out.
  • Put it beside the key and rotate it.

STEAM Reflection (Rosie Jung)

1. Why did you choose STEAM over an online course? 

I like to design and to make stuff through using some kinds of machine and I thought if I join STEAM I will be able to do both at once. Even in the previous school, I chose DT (Design Technology) as the subject I want to take. When I came here, I heard that DT is not included in the subjects which I can choose so I felt down but after that, I heard that STEAM is a similar subject with DT. So I decided to choose STEAM.

2. How have you found the course so far? 

I found it interesting. With the first project which is designing and making a music box, I thought I could do both designing and making which I wanted to do. And another thing that found interesting was that we went out during the class time and buying the materials by ourselves. I wanted to have this kind of experience but there was no chance for me to. I was glad when I heard that we were able to.

3. How would you say the communication is going within your group? 

In our group, there’s only two people which makes me think that it is easier to communicate than the other groups which are in group of three. And because we listen to each other’s opinion carefully and we try to find out the better solution with the opinions that we have so I think the communication between our group is good.

4. Are you going to work as a group or will you delegate roles? 

We will work as a group for making the music box. When we are making the pieces for the music box, designing it, coloring it and composing the music, all the processes will be done together as a group.

5. What did you purchase in Old Shekou the other day and what else will you be needing? 

We bought an iron sheet and a special scissors for cutting it for making the keys made of iron. Other than these, we will need a handle. We are trying to make it with the 3D printer but if it doesn’t work, we will have to make it with another material or buy it somewhere.

6. Overall, how do you think you will do? Will you accomplish the goal and why? 

I think I will do quite well with making a music box except for composing a music. I think I am fine with building some little objects because in the previous school I already tried making some objects such as a toolbox, night lantern and a hanoi tower which is a toy for little children. Because of the experience I have, I think I won’t have lots of troubles for making a box or stands for holding some pieces. And my goal for this project is to make a normal music box which will work properly. And I am not sure if I really can. I am just worried a bit for composing the music. I think I will be able to make the box quite well but I have no confidence in melody because I never tried making it before. But if I work hard with my partner, I predict that we will be able to reach our goal.

7. How will you teach yourselves to program your music?

I am not familiar with composing a music so with the application which can help me to try playing the piano in my MacBook, I’ll practice making some beautiful melodies and then I’ll think about the clear and beautiful melody which will be accepted as a melody to go in a music box.

Steam Reflection(Jinwoo Chung)

 These are the Photos taken in Old Shekou 




First photo was our sketch, and the second one is the materials we need to buy

At the start of my freshmen year and when we had an opportunity to take STEAM, I was really scared and nervous. When we finally started STEAM in the first semester in 9th grade, everything was what I predicted, except I didn’t know you needed to document every single step of processing. Last year felt like our main focus was on engineering. When STEAM class is given at 10th grade, I wanted to take that opportunity to learn more of all aspects of STEAM, so I ended up choosing STEAM over the numerous choices of online courses. The second reason I chose STEAM over online courses is that I didn’t want to use the extra time to learn about something else because I already have 4 other tutors that can develop my skills that I am weak at. The last reason is that Mr. Galvez is one of my favorite teachers, and I wanted to learn STEAM from him.

When I started taking a STEAM in my sophomore year, everything was in action. Instead of just having ideas, we actually started right away to the process of building. As far as I am concerned, I would’ve regretted if I chose to take an online course. Currently, I am still getting know this course, and so far STEAM is really interesting by what we’ve done. When we started our new project to make a music box, our teammates were deciding any unique and uncommon idea, and we finally got an Idea as a group that was inspired by an electric charging water dam. The communication was well done by WeChat and by planning everything beforehand. The only issue is where we’re going to buy what we need, and to get a well-working music box.

To build a project that includes Science, Technology, Arts, and Math, we will have to work as a group to decrease the chances of failure. When our group started our music box project, we made the process to take and all of us were focused on the task. But on the other hand, it has both pros and cons when we decide roles.

When we decided on our roles, we are able to save up a lot of time. However, on the contrary, some people may not be as good as others or some people might hate the role they were given, which can result in conflicts between the members. When we were shopping in Old Shekou, we were able to find one material which was our pipe. This was because none of the shops had a propeller nor the water pump which is the “water elevator” that will send the water upwards. Because none of the shops did have a water pump and the propeller, our group decided to buy them from TaoBao. Overall, I think my group is well organized, and I think we will be successful because our only issue is the music box and its music coming out of the box. We will have to rely on the 3d printer to make sure the music box can work well. Our project won’t include coding because it will physically play the music out of the music box. But to let that happen, It will need to spin the music box, and this will be continued by the propeller spinning by the force of the water.


STEAM Reflection (Sunny Kwon)


STEAM Reflection


The major reason behind my final decision of taking STEAM class instead of VHS was because I knew I preferred a physical face-to-face teacher rather than a virtual one. This way, I could directly ask questions I have and immediately clear up any confusing parts. With other students around me and the teacher, I would better understand what the class expectations are and wether I am falling behind or not. I also figured that if I took an online course, I might feel it as a ‘separate class’ from my normal courses and either regard it with more stress or none. I thought that I wouldn’t be as straightforward and explicit with an online teacher. In addition, if I get a grade that I have questions of, I can promptly find the face-to-face teacher and find a time to talk about it and I would understand the teacher’s reason and expectation better; but if it is an online teacher, the time for meeting could constantly be delayed and you could have no idea what the teacher actually expected from you.

With these reasons, I chose STEAM course and have took the course for about 3 weeks so far, and I still think I have made the right choice for me. Even in this short amount of time, we’ve went through presentations, designing processes, research, planning and more. Although we haven’t even started physically creating the music box, I still feel like I’ve gone through the STEAM problem-solving process multiple times as I was planning and preparing. For instance, when we were looking at Thingiverse for deciding our initial design, we had to choose one, try to plan out how it was actually going to work, find that our constraints would keep us from making it work, choose another one, and go over the same process again. And through these processes I not only get better at dealing with challenges, but also learn about technical knowledge and skills. I believe throughout the rest of the course, I will continue to go through these processes and make further development in terms of each element in STEAM.

So far, I think our group — which consists of Chloe, Alisa, and my self — is doing well in collaborating together. We created a WeChat group to communicate with each other even outside of class, and use it as platform to share our ideas and research. One of the strengths we have is that we don’t hesitate in giving even the dullest ideas, so we have a lot to talk about and discuss. When doing group work, we assign ourselves roles so that we don’t waste our time; for example, during the improv presentation we had, we quickly distributed each of our role and worked coherently so that we didn’t waste time doing the same thing. This is why I want to continue working as a group and do the practice of fulfilling my own role to fully contribute to the overall work as a group.

Last class we went to Old Shekou to look over and purchase some materials, and we went with a list of possible things to buy: Hair Comb, wooden plank, and decoration (glitter). We ordered 2 combs on Taobao though, so we were just going to check if there were some that were good for back-ups. At the end of the class, we were successful in only buying the wooden plank, but being the only necessary material so far, we were satisfied with our purchase. However, when we looked into machinery stores, we talked about how we could use nails instead of 3D printed pegs if they didn’t work on the disc. In summary, the only things we need so far is the comb, which is going to come from Taobao, the wooden board, 3D printer, and LEGO mindstorm motors, and we have most of them already, so we are on a pretty sufficient start.

Overall, I think we would be able to create the music box with all the disc, pegs, and motors, but I am not sure if they would make the sound we want. Since we are using 3D printed materials and normal music boxes are metallic, we are not sure if they would make the music when it hits with the comb. This is why we talked about using nails and buying extra combs, because they would have more chances of creating the ringing sound. We also talked about an alternative way when the disc music box completely failed — a scroll music box. This is where we will order a scroll and a handcrank machine, but change the gears into electronic motors so that it spins by itself and make our own music with hole punching the scroll. However, our teacher had stated then this would mean we are skipping some steps that other teams would be doing, so we are trying to keep this alternative way away as much as possible.

Our group is mostly relying on online sources such as youtube videos and websites to learn how to program our music box. But we found that although there are a lot of videos describing how to make your own music using an ordered music box kit, there are not a lot of videos explaining how to set up a music box from the beginning. This is one of our challenges, but we are trying to overcoming it by deepening our research.

       These are pictures of the wooden plank we bought and the store we bought it.

 This is a picture of our original Old-Shekou-buying list.

STEAM Music Box Reflection – Alisa

Steam Reflection

     Last year, we were given the choice to choose between STEAM and an online course. Looking at the courses, I didn’t find any that were intriguing to me besides Creative Writing. I was considering Creative Writing because I thought that it could really help develop my writing into something of a higher level than I have now. But in the end, I did end up choosing STEAM. I chose STEAM because I believe it would be way more beneficial for me. Although STEAM may just be one subject, a student learns from a combination ofscience, technology, engineering, art, and math. STEAM focuses on all of these instead of just one subject, and how they fit together.  Not only that, STEAM teaches us how to problem solve, to find multiple solutions to a problem, which I think is essential for students to learn. I chose STEAM because I liked how all the aspects of STEAM are incorporated in our learning and I believed that it was important for me to learn the relationships of these subjects altogether. I knew that problem solving would be extremely important for me to learn, and would prove to be beneficial for me in the future.

     Although we have been in school for only a couple of weeks, I really enjoy this class. I think that this year’s course is quite similar to last year’s STEAM class. However, I find that this year’s class provides more freedom—in our design, our product, our materials. Thisis one of the reasons I find this year’s STEAM class so enjoyable. By having more freedom in this class, we, as students, can be as creative as we want, come up with different, unique ideas. I also really like that we weren’t guided as much in this class so far, because that way we can learn more how to plan our projects ourselves and how to find solutions to the problems we might face in our projects, which will be very beneficial for us in the future, because there won’t always be someone to guide us.

     I think the communication skills in our group are extremely good. When we were trying to find ideas for what kind of music box we should make, we shared our ideas with open minds, keeping each suggestion in mind. But we are also very honest with each other. We speak up whenwe think a particular idea won’t work, or if we don’t agree with something. We also keep in touch through WeChat outside of class. If we ever have a problem or a question, we ask on the chat and we try to find a solution together, something we all agree on.

    For our group, we have decided to work as a group instead of designating roles for each of us. We did this because we all can try each aspect or roles in the project. That way we all get to try designing, building, documenting, coding, composing in this project. By working as a group, we can work together more, build on each other’s ideas, incorporating all of our ideas in each aspect of the project as well as understand and solve problems easier, which improves our communication skills and collaboration skills. If we work as a group, the work would be distributed fairly as well, and we wouldn’t be burdened by time, because some things like the design could take longer than coding. And in the end, I believe that we would work better as a group.

     Two days ago, we went to Old Shekou to find some materials for our music box. Most of the materials that we needed we already had in our STEAM class, such as plastic for 3D printing and the motors from the Lego Mindstorm kits. We also ordered a comb from TaoBao, so we were left with only a few things to purchase. During the trip, we purchased a wooden plank, which would serve as the base for our product. The only other thing that we were planning to buy but didn’t get to was decoration, but it was optional.

     I think that the music box that we will make can work, and I really hope so. We have gone through multiple ideas before this idea, and we did research excessively before this project. I hope that this will influence the successfulness of our project. We will try to the best of our ability to make this music box work and to try to solve as many problems as we come across. But in the end, even if it will not work, we know that it was the process that counts.

     I think that our group will teach ourselves to program by finding tutorials on the internet, or by watching some online videos about this topic. I think that the best way to learn about our music box and how it works will be to actually see how others have done it, and try to learn itourselves by using their methods.


STEAM Music Box Reflection (Chloe Chang)

STEAM Music Box Reflection

     This first semester of 10th grade I picked STEAM over an online course because I believe that it is more helpful for me personally. I personally wasn’t that interested in the courses that were given to us, mostly because they offered only a majority of science classes and I am more interested in classes relating to social studies and English. Last year I enjoyed STEAM because we were able to collaborate in groups to create something that involved all aspects of this course. In addition to this, I like how STEAM is able to incorporate so many aspects: science, technology, engineering, art, and math. Furthermore, students in STEAM are more hands-on with projects and we are able to create and design something ourselves rather than needing the teacher to give instruction. I believe this is a very essential class to teach us the problem-solving method even if our project does not succeed, STEAM from previous years has taught me that not all projects have to work in order to learn something from the process.

     Although we have only had 5 or so classes, I am enjoying it thus far. I think having our groups do the brainstorming and designing was challenging in the fact that we don’t completely understand how music boxes work and we have to learn from the basics in order to design a successful music box. I think having Mr. Kummerlin come in was very helpful, even though the technology didn’t work, we had to present on the spot and be able to explain our idea to a consumer. Through that class we learned how to pitch our idea seem interesting for someone to buy it, we also learned presenting skills. I’m excited to continue to work with my group on the music box and hopefully make it function well.

     I think the communication within our group is good because since we are all pretty close friends, we are able to communicate openly with one another and present our ideas. We are also comfortable enough to talk about why or why not a certain idea works, and tell each other if we don’t think an idea is adequate for our end product. All three of us have all proposed different ideas and even though our ideas may not necessarily match all the time. We are able to talk and compromise on the solution with the best fit.

     I think for this project we will work as a group in order to efficiently design and follow our timeline for the due dates. This way all of us can experience different roles within the group and all of us will have to design, code, compose, document all the aspects of the project. If there is an error in our design, all of us will be able to look at it as a group and see what we need to do to overcome this problem. For us specifically, we function better together as a group.

     On September 04, our STEAM class went to old Shekou to gather and scout the materials we need. That day, we only purchased a wooden plank for the base and the stick that will be holding the disc up. We might possibly need materials for the art decoration aspect, as well as a metal hairbrush. We ordered it from Taobao, however, this was just a test, as we do not know the sounds that the comb will make, if the sound works with our project we will keep it, however, if it doesn’t make the sound we desire, we will purchase perhaps another metal comb from old Shekou. The materials we need are wood, 3D printer, comb, Lego Mindstorm motors, computer, decoration supplies.

     I hope that we will do well, and I think we will succeed, as all of our dates for making and designing each part is already set, if we follow our timeline, I believe we can conduct something that will work. By theory, we watched a video that did conduct a similar music box to us so if we follow the procedure from those music boxes, it should work.

     My group will teach ourselves how to program music by watching online videos regarding the hand crank music boxes and cylindrical music boxes to learn how to program the pegs on our disc, though our music box is not necessarily that similar to those two, we can learn from the basics of the other two. If we still have problems with coding and programming music, we can always ask a teacher for support, only if we have tried it multiple times ourselves.

     Even if our project doesn’t work in the end, I hope to learn something in the process of designing, creating and testing this music box.

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