Personal Challenge Final Blog!

This is the final blog about my personal challenge. By exercising during these weeks, I have learned how to make a nice looking and delicious Chiffon cake.

In week one, I made a plan about how to start to make a simple. By reading chapter2, I found “rewards and punishment” is the most effective way to help me improve my ability to make cake. I set some rewards when I worked well and punishment when I did really badly.

In week two, I was inspired by “experiential learning”, so that I decided to make cake without any help. I wanted to do it by trying and learning from experience and then I changed my mind because it was too hard for me. So, I searched the basic information about what materials I need and proportion of them. Then, I started my mission but totally failed.

In week three, according to reading, I gave me a goal, reach the second level of Solo Taxonomy. The higher level is unreal for me. Then I pointed out some questions followed by “objectives attend to taxonomy” to make the work more clearly. Later, I made a specific plan to ensure that I did well this time. Finally, I succeed this time.

In week four, I tried to make a cake with help from three different media, magazine, radio and video. It is also three basic way we study, read, listen and watch. I would tried to make a cake by three way and found which way is the most comfortable for me. The result is video is the best and the radio is the worst.

During these weeks, one big challenge for me is to connect the technology with my work. I can’t find out some really useful technology to help me with my small cake. Maybe a timer? Luckily, the reading is talking about media and technology. So, I can connect my work with media.

The second challenge is in week two. It is too hard for me to push my “experiential learning” work. When I have failed, I can’t ensure what is the exact mistake I made. It result that I can only guess whether what I have done is wrong or not and sometimes maybe I “correct” the right things I have done. It give me a lesson about that learning is never a thing we can do independently.

The last challenge for me is that I have never made a cake before. I am totally confused about what I should do and what next I should do. If I have made cakes before, and this time I just want to try a new type of cake, the work will be easier. Making cake is a really challenge for me.

One thing I did well is that even if the whole work for me is to make a cake, I have tried several ways to do it. This gives me a deeper feeling about making cakes.

Another thing I did well is that I push my work step by step. I do not force me to make a nice cake at the first week but do it at week three after many failure and studying. This is important.

Beside the project I review, I look through the work from group 11 (the topic is Health Information Science)

The form of out project is PPT, and the form of the project I review is website. They are also the forms I can think out. However, the form of gourp11 is more like an APP. Student studies by clicking the button and it will show the new information. It may give student a batter experience during studying. It makes the reading not too boring. They perfectly combine their project with technology. Also, they set some small quiz and learning experience for their student. The quiz is perfectly connect with that they teach. There is only one thing confused me. I can’t jump the session I am not interested. I can only start reading from page one and continue one by one. I am not sure if it is due to my wrong, or this App do not have this option. It is inconvenient for those who has studied the former part and just want to start from the later part.  

Interactive Learning Resource Peer Review

I will review the project of group 8. Their topic is Asian Studies/culture.

I will show my personal suggestion for each sub-topic

Sub-topic one:  Meaning, history and origin of Chinese tea.

This part tells me the background of Chinese tea clearly. I have learned much knowledge about Chinese tea.

Yet, perhaps you might consider that there are too many content from reference. Maybe you can add more personal words in this topic. Also, it seems to me that, even if most of learners can not read, but we are talking about Chinese tea, so, maybe add one or two Chinese citations or articles.

It seems to me that when post YouTube video, it is better to add the link or Website Address. I find there is no web address below the YouTube video which posted.

Sub-topic two:  Different types of Chinese tea 


In sub-topic two, it introduces four types of Chinese tea with perfect content cited in the first two types, non-fermented, and fermented Chinese tea, however, there is no citation in the last two type of Chinese tea. It seems to me that if you can cite each of Chinese teas when you define them, it is will be better.


This article clearly provide information about four main categories of making Chinese tea (non-fermented, fermented, semi-fermented, and post-fermented) and five types of Chinese tea (green, white, yellow, black and oolong). After reading the article, I am curious about that the medical or nutritional values for these four categories and what the category is for each of these five Chinese tea. It seems that if add some information about that, these two parts will have stronger relationship.

Sub-topic three:  How Chinese tea is reflected to Chinese culture

Maybe there are too many same meaning content repeated in the article. For example, the first three sentences in the first paragraph talk about the same thing. (I paste the first three sentences from the article. “This part is about the relationship between Chinese tea and Chinese religion, philosophy, and culture. First, we will introduce the definitions and content in the textbook. These contents will help students understand the relationship between Chinese tea and Chinese religion, philosophy and culture.”) Repeating also happened in the first paragraph on home page. Deleting the repeating sentences maybe make the article looks more succinct.

Correct me if I am wrong, I only find some introduction below this sub-topic. I do not find the explanation or more specific information about how Chinese tea influences the Chinese culture.

I tried my best to look for some links or button but I did not see it.

Maybe add more information about the topic or set clearer links will improve the article.

Sub-topic four:   Influence and importance of Chinese tea.

This part is same as sub-topic three. It looks more than a blueprint or proposal. The content talks about what the author will do but do not expand the point. Maybe expanding more about the point will make the article more constructive.


Add more information or complete the blueprint in sub-topic three and four will make the project more perfect. It seems to me that these two parts are the most important. They are the core of this topic.

There are many citation in sub-topic one or two, this makes the project more authority.

There are some grammar mistakes in the project but it does not influence too much we read the article.

Homework is the major activity the group member communicate with their student. Maybe add more types of activities rather than just answer question. For example, buy some green tea (very cheap in the supermarket), drink and share the feelings.

Group member do not leave information about email or website to make student possible to communicate with them.

The main technology the group member used is YouTube video. It works. However, maybe trying to make some videos by oneself could work better.

All in all, it is a very good project and I have learned a lot About Chinese tea. I hope you guys can make it more perfect.

The week 4 blogs

This is the week 4 blog. In the beginning, I have some personal opinions about technology and rich people. I will mainly talk about why there are so many technologies built by rich men and if these technologies mostly benefit rich people or go against average people.

First, the research and development of new technology require a lot of money — instruments, scientists, waste of materials after failure. If it does not get returned, people will have a lack of motivation to develop new technology.

The reason why these new technologies were invented by the wealthy team is that those who don’t have lots of money can’t support the development of new technologies. This is a helpless but inevitable fact.

Especially in modern society, new technology is no longer that a single person who can work hard for a long time can finish. New technologies require a team with sufficient expertise to work together. Moreover, developing new technology needs deeper expertise nowadays.

Therefore, only rich people can support the development of technology.

Let’s talk about the second topic. It is no doubt that rich people will benefit from R&D technology but will this exploit average people? I do not think so. No tendency, making money is only the result
Technology is a game between big companies, and patents are the way they play the game.
The rich do not benefit from average people due to the technology itself. They rely on products that use technology. Technology itself is expensive, but when it was turned into products, the price of the product generally has a certain degree of control for sales. The power to use the products is not that expensive. If average people are not satisfied with these products or feel not worth, they will not buy them. This is unacceptable for large companies that spend a lot of money on research.
Besides, competition always happens between those technology companies. It also depresses price effectively.
Finally, I believe that the way those technology companies make money relies on the number of sales, after-sales, and extensions instead of the unit price. So, to sales more products, those companies need to concede on price.
In conclusion, the research and development of new technologies need a lot of money. Those people who work on it need get returned. Also, it is hard for those rich people to get many benefits from average people due to technology directly. Technical exploitation generally occurs in between big companies.
The personal challenge of me is making a good cake. It is hard for me to connect this with the topic this week—technology and learning. Therefore, I write some personal opinions about the context of the week 4 article. Now, let me talk about the challenge.
According to the reading from this week, I am going to make my cake this way.
I will try a new type of cake with help from three different Media.
Magazine, radio, and video.
Then, I will compare the result and the working process to find which way for me is better.
The order of choosing these three ways may influence the result because I may get experience in the first and second times but, I can’t find a perfect way to remove the inequity. So, I will concentrate more on the process I feel rather than the products I made unless the difference is too big.
Additionally, I will record the process by my self-phone (technology). It is difficult for people to find mistakes during working. So, getting help from tools is an effective way. I will watch the video and correct mistakes to ensure I can succeed in a short time rather than what I did in the last few weeks.

I guess the best way for me is video and the worst one is the radio.

Personal Challenge week3

This is a new week for my personal challenge—make a good chiffon cake. This time, no failure has been allowed. Additionally, I am going to do the work following the reading materials.

First, clear the goal. The work this week is different from the last, I must succeed in making a good cake. It is no like that just try and records what has been happened.

Second, Solo taxonomy

Level1: no understanding, irrelevant information, misses point.

Level2: to identify, to do procedure, to recite,

Level3: to classify, to combine, to enumerate   

Level4: to relate, to compare, to analyze 

Level5: to generalize, to hypothesize, to theorize.

I am going to reach level2 this week and reach level3 at the end of this challenge. I know these two levels are surface learning but after the experience last week, I found making a good cake is a really hard work. I do not have enough time and confidence to rush to deep learning and to be an expert.

Third, the objectives => solo taxonomy. What I need to know about making a good cake is that.

  1. How do those materials (cream, sugar, water and salt) influence the result? Find a proportion that I think the best.
  2. By searching information online and asking help from my mom, I know that how to whip eggs is the most essential step for a soft and fluffy cake. So, I need to know the best way to deal with it.
  3. Even if menu tells me the right time and temperature for cooking but because of different oven and other reasons, it must be some difference. So, I need to find the right time and temperature by myself.

This my plan to make 6 inches cakes. We know that a good plan is very important for learning, so I will try my best to care about details.

  1. Prepare food materials, eggs 3, milk 35g, corn oil 30g, sugar 48g (18g for yolk, 30 for egg white), cake flour 50g, and white vinegar 2g.
  2. Separate the yolk and egg white
  3. Mix yolk, milk, corn oil, 18g sugar and flour together and stir.
  4. Whip egg white. Add remaining sugar. Keep whipping the egg and add 1/3 sugar every 1 minute until the egg white to be solid.
  5. Add solid egg white into yolk mixture. Add 1/3 each time and stir until we get a well- distributed combination.
  6. Bake 45 minutes at 150C in the middle of the oven.   

In the plan, whipping egg white of course is the hardest part. I will pay more attention to this step. One difficulty probably is that I can’t get solid egg white after whipping. So, I search many materials about how to whip eggs and combine the essential points they mention.

Also, like what I mentioned before, I have different oven from others’. So, I need to keep watching the bake process and adjust the time and temperature by myself.

If I still fail, I need to check all steps one by one and restart rather than guess what maybe influence the result.

If I check all the steps and the problems still can’t be solved, try another menu is the plan B.

I think this plan will help me to make a good cake.

By looking through this plan, I think what I have done last week is more like a joke. I will never succeed if I do not ask for helps.

Let’s back to the reading materials.

In my case, I am both student and teacher. So, I am exactly know what does “student” think during the work. So, I will follow the learning materials guide, give me more motivation to do the work rather than only focus on the failure. Luckily, only focus on “what student are” (the level1 teaching) will not happen to me, I will concentrate on what I have done and what else I can do to improve the work.

One thing I must mention, last week, I thought that the reasons I failed were time and temperature. But, duo to searching and asking, I find that how to whip eggs perfectly is actually the most important part. It teaches me that learning by doing is a very good way to study. However, we can’t reject help from others. “Experiential learning” is good but the more important thing is that when you try this kind of studying, you’d better look for a good teacher to correct your mistakes or follow a professional guide especially when you work on an unfamiliar field.  

By the way, I can’t imagine whipping eggs is such a complex work, So, I post a link here which teaches people how to whip eggs perfectly. I hope it can help every person who is troubling in whipping eggs like me.

Week2 Personal Challenge

This the second week of my personal challenge. Making a “good” cake is a totally new work for me. Before I start my mission, I am inspired by the reading from chapter3. In that chapter, the author mentions that even if people keep updating the way to learn and teach, some basic frames are not changed. People often automatically learn from others the way to learn and teach but they never think if it is the best way for themselves. Beside that, in this article, it introduces “experiential learning” and some of its advantages. So, although it is big challenge for me, I decide to try to a different way to learn how to make a good cake: At the first three times, I will do it by myself without any help from other people, book or internet. As I mentioned in the blog 1, punishment is very important during learning. I decide to eat all my fail cake unless it totally can’t eat like a batch of batter. So, before I start, I need to list several things I should pay attention to. By the way, I just want to make a simple chiffon cake first, maybe six inch big.

  1. The proportion of milk, water and flour.
  2. I know there is kind of flour named “cake flour”, which has correct proportion of flour, sugar and salt. Do I use it?
  3. The right temperature.
  4. How long will the cake be baked?

To be honest, I am not very confident to work well but I think it is still has at least one percent possibility to succeed.

After several hours…….

I feel maybe I give me a next level mission, I really do not know how to start, so I decide to at least search the proportion of those food materials. What I need to test is only the right temperature and how long will it need to be baked. It sounds more realistic now.

By the way, the proportion is egg: 3, sugar: 35g, oil: 30g, milk: 35g, flour: 55g.

I think I totally failed at the first time. The cake I made is very tight and too solid. The small gap inside the cake did not appear. I do not know the right time for baking, so I check oven every 5 minutes. I thought the right time is 5 minutes after the cake expanding. However, my cake even did not expand too much, just a little. So, I baked it 35 minutes. In my opinion, the reason why the cake did not expand maybe is the temperature is too low. Cake needs a higher temperature environment. However, I will not try another test today, because one bad cake is enough for me to eat a day.

I try it twice but I get the same result. The temperature I choose this time is 180C. The cake sill does not expand like a real cake is. What I make is more like a pizza without sauce maybe. It makes me think about that maybe the problem happened in the first step (mix all the food materials) rather than the time and temperature. So, I decide to search some information about how to knead dough well. Now, I have another cake to eat.

I am happy with that this is the last time I bake cake without any help (actually not). I cheat. When I look for some information about how to knead the dough , I accidentally see that “bake 15-20 minutes in the middle of oven at 130C”. So, let me try the last time if I can succeed.

Fail again, same problem. But at least, it looks much better than the first time. Making cake is really hard for me and I finally finish the process of “experiential learning”.

What I have done teaches me that do not learn just by yourself. When you meet problems during study, yes, independent thinking is very important, but it does not mean you should refuse help. When you deal with the area you are not familiar with, “ask” is always a good choice for you. Additionally, looking for a good teacher maybe is the most convenient way to learn. It is more effective than just learn by yourself because you need to look for information and select it. Sometimes, you can’t even make sure if the information you got is right.

Next time, maybe I will invite my mother to give me a lecture to help me to make a good cake. Like what the chapter3 said, lecture is a traditional but very useful way to learn.

The first learning Challage

The first personal learning challenge I want to do is “making a cake”. Of course it is not a big birthday cake but I will try my best to make it good. I have read Chapter2: The nature of knowledge and the implications for teaching. I will explain how some of them help me with my challenge plan. But before doing this, I want to share some personal opinion about the connectivism because I do not agree with part of this theme. In the article, it says “The pipe is more important than the content within the pipe”. If there is no pipe there, knowledge exists and has meaning itself however, if there is no knowledge, what is the pipe use for? In my opinion, what in the pipe is 100% more important than pipe. Does internet change the way we study? I think no. How we study without internet? Read, listen and speak. How we use internet study? Read. Listen and speak. Internet just convenient us to get the knowledge. If the internet could help us transmission knowledge into our brain directly; that calls new way to study. Also, I agree internet is important for us to study but is it such an indispensable tool for us to study like some people emphasize? I think controversy exists.

Let’s talk about the learning challenge now. I think the most useful way to encourage me to achieve my goal is the “rewards and punishment” from Behaviourists. By the way, making a good cake is not an easy job especially making it fluffy. My sister tried to make a nice cake but at last she failed. The goal of me is at least succeed once. I will separate “making cake” into several steps and set some tiny rewards or punishment when each step succeeds or fails. When I fail to do the same step one more time, I will punish more seriously. No way will make me avoid keeping making mistake unless more punishment. Besides this, follow the guide carefully is also important. I need to select the menu from authority book or website. Also, I will not change any steps from the menu and any meterage of the source I use. Personal opinion is quite useless during the cake making experience. I will pretend me a cake machine. Additionally, I will own up to my mistakes while making cake, no excuse. Judge what I have done correctly.



Hello, everyone. My name is RenyuZheng; you can also call me Burton. I am very happy studying with you guys in this class. I am an economic student. I like playing badminton and if anyone wants to find a badminton fan who is not very good at and bad at it, that is me, just email me; I am free on weekend. I am a foodie, if you guys know any good restraint in Victoria and Vancouver, please just tell me, that means a lot for me.

Learning Experience

This is the second time I take online studying course. The first experience encourages me to try this type of study more. So, I want to the share my first online studying experience. I take EDCI 339 on September semester last year. To be honest, that course takes me a lot of problems. Sometimes, I can’t find URL the instructor let me to read, sometimes I miss a few small assignment which is not very obvious, also I miss up one deadline of an assignment once. All these problems happened at the early time of that course. It makes me think about if it is wrong for me to choose online course because I definitely can’t deal with this kind of studying style. However, I do not give up this course and keep doing better. At last, I find I am fall in love with it. As long as you can manage your time correctly, you will find online studying is pretty good. You can organize your time and work by yourself freely. Perhaps, I will try my third online studying course next term.