Monday, July 29, 2013


Have you ever heard of the term MOOC? It stands for Massive Open Online Course and I'm taking two of them during my summer break! A MOOC is exactly what it says it is. It's a free online course that you can take on virtually any subject that you like. Many people think that MOOCs are revolutionizing online education, and education in general, especially higher education and degree programs. Everyone knows that traditional, classroom, university education is so very expensive, and MOOCs are a viable alternative to expensive ed. programs.

People can even earn university credit from some courses, as long as there is a strict and reliable assessment system facilitated by the instructor. Other MOOCs offer statements of accomplishment or completion. Most MOOCs though, just provide knowledge and nothing more. Isn't that the most important part!

The three biggest MOOC providers include, Udacity, and edX. Most of their course are scientific and mathematical courses that can be easily assessed and assigned course credit. They also offer courses based on more abstract subjects like philosophy and literature and music. I'm currently taking a Public Speaking class on Coursera that's being offered by the University of Washington. I'm learning about rhetoric and how to plan and execute different types of speeches. People can upload speeches to the course and have peers review them if they wish even! I've learned a lot in this class and am gaining skills I WILL be able to use in the future.

Some organizations offer MOOCs by themselves. I'm also taking a Philanthropy class taught by the Learning by Giving Foundation, on how to pick a good organization to donate to.

Tips from Me:

1. Be aware that you are taking a real, live class. It may not seem that way cause it's online; some have assignments, some don't. Plan your schedule to accommodate for the class.

2. Don't sign up for too many MOOCs. They require effort and time to truly learn. 

3. See if you can get course credit for the MOOC! 

4. Also check out places like Open Learn University, that allow people to view condensed versions or excerpts of actual courses. You can learn a lot from materials online!


Monday, July 15, 2013

Acting class

Everyone would like to be a famous actor or singer, because it seems like a fun job. All my life, I've been semi-curious about acting, what it's like, and how one does it. So I decided to enroll in a 2-month acting class this summer just to try it out.

There are around 10 people in the adult acting class I'm in, so it's perfect for more engaging interactions and you get to know the people in the class well. The topics we've covered so far include: commercial work, headshots and resumes, the casting process, monologues, improvisation, and scenework. I have 3 classes left and those will be all about scenework, since that is the bulk of the acting industry!

It's been such a fun experience and I definitely don't want to give up this fun new activity! By taking this class, I've gone out of my comfort zone numerous times. I've also learned that acting is difficult, because in order to act well, you need to really actual feel what the character is supposed to be feeling, which is hard to muster sometimes.

I definitely recommend taking an acting class if you want to try theater, tv and film, or are just curious about what it's like!

Tips from me: 

1. A simple Google search will find you a couple of acting school or programs in your area. Read testimonials and reviews of the program. If the acting school has a facebook or other social media page, look at that and see what people say about the school!

2. Paying for a short, introductory acting class shouldn't be too expensive. As always, watch out for scams or poor reviews. 

3. Be ready for anything. Just relax and have fun, be in the moment. 
Image from

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

De-clutter your space

If you're like me, then you have a lot of stuff lying around your house and more specifically, your room, that you rarely use. Maybe it's that picture frame you received and never used or maybe it's a book you're never going to read again or maybe it's even it's a pair of earrings you never wear. So you have all this stuff lying around and you know you're never going to use them. Why not get rid of them!

There are many ways you can get rid of your things.
You could sell things on ebay, amazon, or other selling sites and earn some cash along the way.
 You could donate clothing, furniture and other things to stores like Salvation army or donate them to non-profits that sell these items to recycling companies in order to earn money for their organizations.
But perhaps best of all, you could trade your items in order to get other items that you want or need!

There's a wonderful website called that allows you to list and add pictures of things that you have (furniture, jewelery, books and movies, electronics, sports items, clothes, etc) and trade them for things that other users have! The way this works is you have a "Haves" list and a "Wants" list. If you see something you like in someone's "Haves", you send them a message asking them to take a look at your haves and see if you can set up a trade with them. If they agree to swap with you, then you just mail the item to the other user, and they'll mail their item to you as well.

Tips from Me:
1. Whenever you're mailing to people, it's always a good idea to purchase delivery confirmation for your packages, especially if they're valuable/expensive. Also ask the person you're swapping with to purchase DC so you can track the package and make sure you're actually going to get it. 

2. There are a high number of flakers and scammers on this site. Pay attention to user's ratings before you agree to send an item!  

To make an account today, visit

Monday, August 20, 2012

If you're looking to make a little money over break, consider joining the team at ChaCha is a mobile phone question and answer service. The way it works is a customer texts ChaCha a question they need an answer to, and the ChaCha team will send back their answer! People ask all sorts of questions, from sports scores and weather to definitions and horoscopes. The people who help get the answer to the customer are called ChaCha guides, because they guide the answer through a process so that it reaches the customer in a timely manner.

There are many roles as a Guide; the team consists of Generalists, Expeditors, Transcribers, Specialists, and Vetters. The most common role is the Vetter role. They're the ones that click the button to send the answer to the customer! Vetters do that by selecting and editing a pre-written answer to the question, then they click Send. Also, the Vetting role is the primary "entry-level" position as a guide. As one gains more experience, he or she can switch to other roles on the team.

The great thing about working for ChaCha is that you can do all the work from your own computer! The question and answer process is done purely on the internet, no offices, no meetings, no nothing! That's why is the best way to earn quick cash online.

Tips from me:
1. Vetters earn about a penny per answered question. So if you want to make some real cash, I'd suggest finding a real wage/salary job. 

2. When you first join ChaCha, you will go through an entire "orientation" session, which is pretty helpful. You get introduced to the company and executives, how the process works, tips, and other useful information like that. Go through the whole orientation process and you'll be making cash in no time! 

3. ChaCha will tell you not to google or search for the answer yourself. If there's no right answer in the possible answers given to you, then you're supposed to click 'No Suitable Answer'. Ultimately, it's up to you if you want to google answers or not. Every answered question is a penny in the bank, but it can get exhausting after a while googling answers like that. 

To learn more about ChaCha and how to become a vetter:

Become a ChaCha Guide

Do you need ChaCha to answer your question? Text 242242 today!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Medical and Dental visits

When you're on break, it's the perfect time to catch up on medical, dental, and any other healthcare visits and to take care of important things like that.

Schedule your yearly checkup with your doctor while you're on break! Are you missing any immunizations? get them done now before your summer or winter break ends! Need to do some blood work, get it done now!

Schedule a visit with your dentist, after all, you're supposed to go twice a year! Going during summer and winter breaks is perfect timing! Do you need to get your wisdom teeth taken out soon, get it done this summer or winter (or whenever you're on break).

So basically, my message is, now that you have a lot of free time, take care of these important things to make sure you stay healthy!

Oh, and don't forget to take your vitamins!

Tips from Me: 
 1. Now would be a good time to familiarize yourself with your insurance policy if you have one. Do you have to pay copays for medical visits and procedures or do you have a set deductible per year? What kind of medical, dental, or specialist plans do you have? It's important to know these things! 

2. It's generally a good idea to follow your medical providers instructions and/or suggestions, especially when it comes to things that you need to do to improve your health (i.e., consulting with medical specialists, taking certain vitamins, getting certain procedures done, etc). 

3. Don't wait until the last minute to schedule an appointment. If you do, you risk the chance of not even getting an appointment before your break ends! 

To find medical providers that are covered by your insurance policy, just visit your insurance company's website and go to the "Find A Doctor" section to get started!