Hidden figures

The movie hidden figures is about three African-American woman who worked as mathematicians for NASA during their first space program. At that time access of technology was really small, and today our toasters have more technology then computers at the time. Kathrine Johnson (Taraji P. Henson), Mary Jackson (Janelle Monae) and Dorothy Vaughan (Octavia Spencer) fight the segregation in the sixties, as well with the discrimination of women. We se that there are different toilets, coffee cans and bus seats for coloured and white people.

John Glenn and Friendship 7, before take off.

John Glenn was an American astronaut who were the first American to orbit around the earth, three times. He was a aviator and senator as well, he served as a fighting pilot in world war II and Korea. He was the fifth person i space and was there for almost five hours. When he flew the Friendship 7, he was supposed to fly seven times around the world in orbit. Dew to technical issues, he had to lad after three rounds. He became a national hero and received a ticker-tape parade in New York City. In 1990 he was included the U.S Astronaut Hall of fame. He was also the oldest person to fly in space in 1998. At a age of 77 years old NASA sent the senator to space, becoming his second time in space.

John Glenn on his second space mission in 1998.

After the mission on sending one of the Mercury seven to circle around the earth in orbit, all of the women got good jobs. Kathrine continued working for NASA as a calculator. Without her the Apollo II and space shutter program would not succeed. She received the presidential medal of freedom in 2015, from President Obama. Mary Jackson became the first female black aerospace engineer and worked for NASA for 34 years. She wrote the book hidden figures and fought for women rights during her career. She passed in 2005 at the age on 83. Dorothy Vaughan passed away in 2010, 98 years old. During her career she became the first black supervisor in NASA, she worked at NASA for 28 years.


Kathrine Johnson (Taraji P. Henson), Mary Jackson (Janelle Monae) Dorothy Vaughan (Octavia Spencer)







Lack of education in developing countries

There are several developing countries in todays world, most of these are located in Africa and Asia. There is no coincidence that these countries also have higer death rate, less educated people, higher child morality and a lower mean age. Some countries are considered being a developing country because of the bad economy or politics. We usually think of developing countries as the poorest countries with no water and where kids raises their siblings. In a country where all of this is fine, but the government is corrupt or unfair can be considered a developing country. The definition of a developing country is often discussed, because it indicates countries to follow the western economic developing. Countries like Cuba and Bhutan dosen’t support this, and is then considered a developing country.

One thing everyone agree on is that education is the first solution for developing countries either way. In most of these countries school costs a lot of money, which indicates that they can’t afford. Illiteracy is highest a
mong women. In 20 developing countries 70% of the women can’t read or write. By giving girls and women an education, their position in society gets stronger.Educated women are less likely to be exposed to human trafficking and is less likely to get HIV. Most of them marry later as well and have fewer kids. It will also help them raise their children, and they live longer to help them with their education. UNICEF educated 2300 female teachers in Nigeria in 2011, so young girls can have female role models at schools. This made it easier and more inspiring for them to go to school.


A_82640094_schoolyears549t school they don’t learn the same as we in Norway do. They learn about things they need in their everyday life, like agriculture, nutrition and farming. This way they can grow food and feed their families. It can improve the child morality and mean age rate. Education is also the key to improving the health standards. If they learn about vitamins they need during pregnancy, clean water, diseases and sanitation it can keep them healthier and help them live longer. Learning about sanitation can reduce the spread of diseases, which will help on the mean age.







Study Abroad

There are tons of reasons why you should study abroad, even if it’s just for one semester, a full studie or volunteering. Schools all over the world have studies that are perfect for students from other parts of the world. If studying for several years far from home seems scary, most universities in Norway actually offer exchange programs for one semester. On the other hand, if you’re one of those who want a timeout between high school and further studies, there are a lot of volunteer programs. You can work and earn money, or help out for free with animals or humans in need.

Volunteering in Refugee camps

The volunteer program that I would like to work with is working with refugees. There are many ways to volunteer, but each organisation have different claims you need for working for them. Some want you to have other volunteer experience from before, or that you need to be an certain age. I would like to work for The UNHCR, because their main focus is to help refugees. They have refugee camps you can help at, or you can help refugees that’s new to a country. I want to help others in need, and of course you can help animals but I want to do something more. To get volunteer experience I’ll have to work with refugees in Norway and then probably lions in Africa, before I get to work for the UNHCR.

I think volunteering at a refugee camp can be very challenging mentally, but I feel like donating some money isn’t enough when their life is so unfair. The UNHCR help out in Europe, Iraq, South Sudan, Syria, Sudan, Yemen and the Central African Republic. So there are several places you can go. I feel that if I’m going to take a year of my life to volunteering, I want to help the ones who need it the most. I want to make a different in someones life for the positive.


Bond University 

If I were to go and studie in another country there is no doubt on where I would go. On the gold coast of Australia you find Bond University. I’ve never been to Australia but there is something about the country that has me intrigued. The climate, history and culture is so different from Bærum in Norway. A two year studie where I get a bachelor in International Relations is something I see my self doing.

Australia in general get students from all over the world, and the schools and universities are good at adjusting the classes. The first language of Australia is English, so I wouldn’t have to learn a new language. Having a whole studie in another language will probably be challenging at first, but after a few months I think it will come naturally. Bond university is good at having school events that you can participate in to get to know you fellow students. Another huge pluss is that the school is located on the gold coast near surfers paradise, which dosen’t sound half bad.


The negatives of studying abroad depends on the person you ask. An outgoing person who loves meeting new people would probably love a year abroad, but a more close person won’t enjoy it as much. You often here only the good reasons of studying abroad, but there is a down side to everything. The first obstacle will be money, in Norway we are blessed with a welfare system that basically pays for our education, but not all countries have it that way. Universities abroad are more expensive, so at the same time as you probably have to work hard with school (because of the language), you have to work to afford school. The second negative is as I just mentioned, the classes are in a foreign language. This will make the school som much harder, and you have to worker harder then you would with classes in your mother tongue. Other negative sides can be that you are far away from your loved ones, it’s hard to adjust a new culture, you’ll probably feel alone at first, but all this is going to get solved. You are not alone, and many other have done and felt the same way you have, it will be okey.








Different Variations of English

Today there are almost 400 million that speak English as their first language, and even more speak it as a foreign language. English is a language that’s important for people from small countries to communicate with the rest of the world. Often there are the people of these countries that speaks the best English. In bigger countries with a more prevalent language, the need of English fades away. Spanglish, Indian English and Swenglish are mixes of English and other languages.


Spanglish has become a common expression because of its prevalence. In the United States they’re called hispanic and have population of 1.5 million. Hispanos are immigrants from Latino America, and over the years they’ve developed almost their own language. Spanglish is a bit different from the other variations of English. In both Indian english and swenglish they speak english but with an accent and grammar from their language. In spanglish they use som Spanish words in sentences in addition to the grammar and accent. It’s most common in Miami, because most immigrants from Latino America move there since the climate is so similar.

Indian english

In the early 1600 the first brits came to India, and the country was ruled by British until 1947. Through Christian missionaries english was taught to the population. Today the English is the second official language in India. It’s spoken by 4% of the population, which may sound like a small amount, but in a population that big that’s around 35 million English speakers. This makes India the largest English speaking community outside of the US and the UK. There’s still a lot of people that don’t speak english in India. A reason can be that the population is so big that they don’t feel the need to learn english.


Swenglish is a mix of English and Swedish. We divide swenglish between mixing English with Swedish grammar and speaking English with an Swedish accent. Sweden is a small country and its hard to talk Swedish outside of Scandinavia, therefor a big percentage of the population speak English. In all Scandinavian  countries they start learning english in a early age, that’s also why they score the highest in the new study on english skills around the world.







Gran Torino: Questions & Answers

We watched the movie Gran Torino today in International English class. In the movie we meet Walt Kowalski and his Hmong neighbours. Walt had issues with his neighbours because of his beliefs. The movie starts of with Walt’s wife dying, and in her funeral we meet the priest. Walt’s wife had asked him to look after Walt, something Walt doesn’t show any interest in. Through out the movie there are several important moments with both the priest and his neighbours. Without spoiling the movie I have to say that the end surprised me.

How would you describe Walt’s relationship with his family? Do you know of anyone that has a similar family relationship?

Walt had a very tense relationship with his family witch made it hard for his sons to reach out to him. His family nearly gave up on having a relationship with him after his wife died. Walt was a very closed person and it was hard to reach out to him, he just wanted to be for him self. Therefor when his sons tried to talk to him he just shut them out. After Walt did this for a long time his sons started to care less, and when Walt needed his sons they weren’t there for him.

I don’t know anyone that has this kind of relationship with their family, at least not at this level. There are of course families that aren’t as close with their parents or siblings. Is those cases they dosen’t kick each other out on their birthdays, but they may not chat as easily around the dinner table.

What does respect mean to Walt? What does respect mean to you?

Walt shows many signs that he thinks that everyone should have respect for each other. He don’t want gifts from his neighbours, and wants everybody to call him Mr. Kowalski. This makes us belive that Walt thinks of respect as something you owe one another. In addition to this because of his racists views, he thinks that his Hmong neighbours should have more respect for him, because he lived in the neighbourhood first.

Respect to me means that you should respect others opinions and respecting that people are different without judging someone.

How would you describe the relationship between Walt and the priest? How does this relationship change during the movie?

In the beginning of the movie he dosent find the priest any helpful and just wants to be left alone. During the movie they get to know each other and they slowly build a relationship. Spoiler: He even goes to a confession towards the end.

After the attack, Walt gets a haircut and shave, gets a new suit and goes to confession. What is the significance of these actions?

When Walt gets a haircut, shaves, gets a new suit and goes to confession, we understand that something is about to happened. Because of the recent event with the attack we understand that it has something to do with some sort of revenge.

Can you think of real life examples of people who have sacrificed themselves for others? What drives these people to make this sort of sacrifice?

There are people constantly sacrificing themselves for other in wars. They fight for their beliefs and thats their motivation.


Donald Trump visits Sandvika

Fake news is a topic that Trump, Facebook, Google and others are fighting. Trump has accused CNN of being fake news after it came out that Russia helped him win the election. It is easy to be fooled by pop up news on Facebook, unreliable news, and believe whats being said in the articles. Making fake news is too simple, but there’s not that hard to check if your source is reliable.


If you see a video on Facebook of mind blowing news, but none of your regular sites are writing about it, the chances are big that the news are fake. You can also open the article and look at the design of the webpage or url-dress. Often you can tell by a bad design or the use of block letters if the source is fake. Another thing you can do is to look at the url, if the site ends with .com.co it’s probably fake. The best thing you can do to check your source is to read about the happening other places.

This week there’s been a lot of news around the soon new president of the United States, Donald Trump. A few weeks ago CIA and FBI claimed Russia helped Trump win the election, and this week Russia said they had sensitive materiel on Trump. CNN wrote an article about this, and Trump got furious. At his first press conference since the election a CNN reporter asked him: “Mr. President-elect, since you have been attacking our news organization, can you give us a chance?”. Trump refused to answer the question and moved on.

Norway is a country far away from most worldwide news, therefor it’s really important for us to get the right information. Without news we don’t have clue whats going on in the world, if we then gets wrong information we get a messed up picture of whats going on. Google are now launching a fact checker for news, it means a label will show up next to news in search results. This way people in Norway and all over the world will be able to check  their news.


We had students from Bergen, the United States and Australia writing on our padlet about fake news. Reading these you can tell that the students from the US are more concerned about the political picture with fake news, and riots caused by these news. Both students from Bergen and Australia thought more about how the fake news affected out learning. I don’t find it weird that it’s this way, after all the US now have president that’s all over the media.

We actually skyped with students from Johannesburg, South Africa. They recently had an experience with fake news. A news article said that teachers from schools in South Africa are turning students to illuminati members by making them drink a raspberry drink with human blood. The students we skyped with goes to a school listed in the article, and found it funny what people can make up.











“Reading in class” – Preparations

Aravind Adiga is an author and journalist born and raised in India. He studied at Columbia University in New York and Magdalen college in Oxford. He worked as a finance journalist in the beginning and has been published by Financial Times, Money and The Wall Street Journal. In February 2003 he did an interview for Money magazine with the newly elected president of the United States Donald Trump. He later began working as a freelance journalist and wrote the book White Tiger. He won the Man Booker Prize in 2008 for that book. Despite his success in America, he now lives in Mumbai in his home country India.

After reading about Aravind Adiga I found him really interesting because he knows so much about economy and finance. I was first sure that I wanted to read the joy luck club, but after doing research on Aravind I’m convinced that I want to read the White Tiger. The book takes place in a poor village in India, where we meet Balram Halwai, a young Indian man. He gets a job as a private driver for a rich family with connections directly to the Indian government.

  • Sara Emilie

Amy Tan is an american successful author who often writes books about mother-daughter-relations based on her own personal experiences.

Amy’s parents were both from China, but immigrated to the United States before she was born. Her father had fled from revolution in China, and her mother ran away from wife abuse from her earlier husband and had to leave her three children behind.

When Amy was 15, her father and older brother died of cancer the same year. Amy’s mother believed the whole family was cursed and took the children and left the country. The Tan family ended up in Switzerland. Amy got a boyfriend who was psychiatrically suicidal, and she got arrested for drugs when she was 16. Luckily she got away with only a warning. She started to studying in Switzerland and began writing novels when she was 33 years old. She met her husband on a blind date in 1970, and they have been together ever since. Her first book was a collection of short stories called The Joy Luck Club, and includes a lot of personal experiences.

I decided to read The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan, because I was really amazed by the author’s background story. Considering that, I would really like to read a book that is based on her experiences and the people around her. The book is about four chinese women, who call themselves The Joy Luck Club. They have immigrated to San Francisco and are introduced to a new life full of both possibilities and difficulties.  The book focuses on cultural differences, and the process of adjusting to a brand new culture.

  • Sara Ulla