Thursday, July 24, 2014

The Psychology of Friendship

Today in class we discussed the importance of friendship and how it changes over time, in quality and in definition. By two years, even though toddlers may not always be totally verbal, they have been shown to have preferences for peers. Usually these peers are introduced to each other by parents, because of a friendship the parents have, or by some other connection. After we read this in the textbook, Cassie explained how she became best friends with someone because she was kind of pushed into the circumstance. Many years later they are still best friends even though they are completely different from each other. Now they ask themselves, "Would we have been friends if we weren't introduced to each other?" They both felt the answer was no. I feel as though for many friendships starting from early childhood, they are in the same situation where if they were to meet each other later in life, they never would have been friends.

 After this slight detour in the lecture we returned to the psychology of friendship. Two year olds can show the beginning of friendships by smiling when they see each other and trying to be next to each other physically more. Later in the child's life, when they are about six they can begin to define friendship verbally. Six year olds see friendship as people who are interested in participating in the same activities and who have the same interests. They may also share toys or other material objects. Then later when children are about twelve years old, they see friendship as being a relationship that should have reciprocation, equality and trust. There is a theory that the basis of friendships is always reciprocation of a positive relationship, and that the children just define it with more complexity as they get older because they have the capability to with a more extensive vocabulary. Then they start to reflect the "definition of friendships", in their own friendships. This is what we went over before lunch.

Studying in the Lounge
 She let us out early for lunch again which was nice, so now we had an hour and a half to eat lunch. I ate with Eugenia and Catherine, but since lunch was so long, I was also able to talk to Victoria and Jimmy for a bit. For the second half of class, some groups started doing their study since we had one participant available. Unfortunately for my group, the participant was a boy, and since we are focusing on girls in our study, we couldn't take advantage of this opportunity. Tomorrow, though, we will have one participant. She is five years old. The other participants will be able to come in on Sunday. This means that the class has the option of coming on Sunday if they want to get data. Because a lot of us are going to be coming in on Sunday, we might cancel class on Monday. That would be a nice break.

 Because we weren't doing any studies today, we just focused on our reading for that night until we were dismissed from class. After class, Dani and I went to the gym until 5:30. We met up with Oyin, Jimmy, and Victoria for dinner then. Afterwards we went to the lounges to work on homework.

A Morning at Interface

Today's field trip was my favorite field trip that we have taken so far. We visited Interface which is a carpet tile company. To get there, we had to take the train downtown and there we would meet our teacher to walk to the building. We had to rely on ourselves to get us downtown in one piece. In my opinion, nothing brings a class of 14 together like trying to figure out directions.
Interface Office
Interface is a company that produces carpet tiles so naturally, their office had some really intricate carpet designs. After passing through the reception room, we went into a conference room where we would be having our presentation given by Steve Arbaugh. Steve is currently the VP of Creative Strategy & Planning. He opened up his presentation by talking about the creator of Interface, Ray Anderson. Ray had become enlightened about climate change one day so he created a plan for the carpet company he worked for before but they said that they wouldn't put into action because it was too expensive. Ray then decided that he would do it himself and that was how Interface was born.
Interface Presentation Room
Steve went on to talk about the ways that the company remains sustainable and how their carpet tiles are made. The explanation of how the carpet tiles are made was really fascinating because he actually had the materials in front of him and he walked us through the process. The carpet tiles are 100% recyclable and Interface asks that its customers return their carpet tiles to them when they get it replaced. Although only 5% of their customers take them up on that offer, all of the parts that make up the carpet tile are then taken apart, revamped, and reused for another carpet tile. Nylon is a component that is apart of the carpet tile making process and Interface gets some of its nylon from recycled fishnets from the Philippines. Another component that is part of the making of carpet tiles is oil. Oil is a finite resource that we have and Steve told us that they working on finding a a replacement .

Lunch With Interface
Once our meeting at Interface was over, we walked back to the UChicago Business School downtown to have the afternoon portion of class. We reflected on our day's visit and then we were given a lecture on the role that the media plays on educating the public on sustainable practices and about any environmental problems that we are having. After we all shared our opinions, we came to the conclusion that the media could do a better job but along with them having to change their mindsets, we as the consumer need to be more open to environmental issues.

Today was probably the most fun class day that I have had so far. Interface really surprised me at how genuine and transparent they were. Interface is one of the few companies out there that became sustainable based purely on the fact that it is the right thing to do. When Interface started up, Ray wasn't doing this because he figured in a few years his company would turn a profit, he did this because it is the right thing to do for the environment and I really respect him for that.

Everyday Learning New Materials

I woke up very tired this morning because I went to sleep late last night. My leg was still hurting from the soccer game I played yesterday. Every time I would walk and bend my left knee it would instantly give me a pain. I didn't eat breakfast for the cause of my left knee pain; it would take me at least 10 minutes to get to my class. I arrived at my class five minutes early. Achy told the class to start working on our journal. When we finished with our journal, Achy said that we were going to work on revising the road story we all turned in. First, she started with Karen, Robert, Qynce, and Cristine road story about an epidemic disease in Washington. It is six pages long and the whole morning we were revising it as a class. Achy was reading the story, while she gives her comments to the group and anyone can jump in the conversation to comment on the story too. Achy was very straight forward with the team and told them what was wrong and what was confusing in the story. Then, some of my classmates started feeling comfortable and started commenting on their story too. We spend the whole morning working on their story. She let us out at 12 PM and to come back at 1:15 PM. In lunch I sat down with my friends Alexa, Dani, and Vicky. Oyin was in a field trip at downtown Chicago.  We were all talking about how class was going really smooth today. We all walked to class together because our classes were in the same direction. When I got back to my class we started working on Liwen, Lucy, and Tess road story about a dad that is a straight jackass to his son and wife. With this story most of the class participated and it was a very fun activity and we enjoyed revising their story. We finished with their story at three. Achy let us go, but before we left, she told us that our personal story was due on Saturday at noon. The whole class was very happy with this great news. The story was due tomorrow at midnight, but she changed it and we were all happy to hear that.
Mr. Peter White (Alice's Adventures in Wonderland) only that his not white.

I came to my room and took a 30 minutes nap, before I leave to meet up with Pamela. When I woke up from my nap I grab my backpack, put my sandals on, and headed to International House to meet up with Pamela. Pamela and I went over the fragment sentences assignment that she left me last night. I got 8 out of 16 right and then she knew that I need to work more on identifying fragments sentences. She also explained to me why I got it wrong, and why it was the correct answer instead of the answer I wrote down. Then, we started revising my personal essay that I’m still working on. She gave me really good feedback about the mistakes I was doing in my essay: prepositions words, stop using at, add verb ending, punctuation with sentences, such as, comma slices, and periods after sentence fragments. I don’t care if she tells me straight forward about my errors because I came here to learn and learning what my mistakes are will help me improve. I needed to go back to my essay and fix my errors.
Halperin Lounge doing our homework.

When Pamela and I finished with our meeting, I came to my room to leave my backpack and went to the Dining Hall to eat dinner. I received a called from Oyin telling me to come and join her and the girls for dinner. I was already inside of the Dining room when she called me. I told her I was inside getting food already. She didn't want to come inside because she was waiting for Alexa and Dani that were coming from the gym. I told her that she can wait for them inside and to not leave me eating by myself. She came inside and I waited for her to get food. Then, Alexa and Dani came in and they grabbed their food too. We all look for a table to sit down. We stayed in the Dining Hall for 1 hour 30 minutes talking about class, and Oyin field trip. She went to Interface Company where they make carpet tiles. Then we all decided to meet at Halperin Lounge to do our homework and blog. 

Sequencing Facility Feild Trip

This morning was pretty  much the same. I woke up at 7:45 AM but I actually got out of my bed at 7:55 AM just because I was being lazy today. As soon as everyone got to class we took a field trip to a sequencing facility where they sequence DNA that is given to them. I thought it was interesting how they do DNA sequencing. We actually were going to work on DNA sequencing in class. After we went to the sequencing facility we went back to the lab to work on sequencing DNA and finding the mutant in the DNA. We found the mutant by looking to see if there was a dot to show that the genes were disagreeing and that told us what the mutant was. We translated the amino acid and mine was Arginine. The amino acid code for Arginine is CGU, CGC, CGA, and CGG. My mutant was called Thymine.

After the first part of that lab we went to lunch early. I ate cantaloupe and mac & cheese and it was good. I sat with Katherine, Eugenia, and Alexa. I really enjoyed Eugenia, who is from London, talking about the sport cricket and she told us that the ball they use is metal with leather rapped around it. It's kind of like a baseball but it has metal inside it and it looks like one too. She also said that she got hit in the jaw with one and she couldn't talk for a while.

When I went back to class we went to a lecture first and then  lab. In the lecture she talked about HIV and Drug Resistance. I learned that changing a selective environment can slow evolution of drug resistance. I also learned that virulence is how harmful a pathogen is to it's host. There was also a topic of Anti Retroviral Drugs. It controls the infection but can't cure it because HIV has a high mutation rate and Antiviral drugs target actively replicating viruses. In the second part of lab we did protein modeling. The steps we took were to make the protein more visible to see better. The purpose of this lab was to visualize how rifampicin bonds to the protein of the bacteria samples.

After class I went to the dorms and took a nap until 5 PM and then went to dinner. At dinner I sat with Oyin, Jimmy, Alexa, and Dani. We stayed there until 7:00 PM which was longer then usual but we had a very interesting conversation about our day and then we met someone named Barron who is leaving tomorrow with his program. He was nice, polite, and talked to us for a couple of minutes until he had to go back to his table. Then we left and went to the west lounge to sit down for a while until we all got our computers and came back to the lounge to do homework. That's what we are going to end the night with almost everyday but sadly Dani didn't come today which is fine because we know she has a lot of work to do for her class.