Indian vs American schools

Oh, school. The place where tears are shredded, friends are made, tests are done, pencils have disappeared, etc. Many people know the main reason for school, and that is to teach children. Every part of the world has different their own teaching system. What are the differences and similarities? In this post, I will be comparing Indian schools to American schools in terms of knowledge.

Let’s start off with, India. Indians are known for being smart doctors. They probably have that reputation, since they have high academic rates (which they get from school). Indian schools treat their students like sponges. They will make them absorb as much information as possible. This can answer why they are so good at math, science, etc. They push the children to higher levels, therefore they can always learn more. They teachImage result for indian schools with discipline, so the children are ready for the future, where nothing is a perfect palace. Even though Indian schools teach great quantities of knowledge, they lack Image result for indian schoolsthe ability to teach character traits, sociality, etc. All these traits are supposed to be learned by yourselves. But, Indian schools are doing their job since they are well known for their discoveries and accomplishments (for more Indian discoveries, visit THIS post by me).

Off to America, we go. Americans are the total opposite. In America, schools teach their students character traits, sociality, etc. They are “softer” than most Indians. There isn’t much discipline on these students. They explore more. The students spend a lot of time learning these Image result for american schoolsImage result for american schoolstraits, that when they are exposed to other fields, they must pick them up fast. This is why people across the world claim that Americans are dumb and not as smart as Asians. This depends on the student themselves. In the end, Americans might be less educated in terms of knowledge (but it strongly depends on the student and if they can pick up this knowledge fast), but they are more social and understand better.

Schools all over the world are divergent. They try to teach the same thing, but some more than others. Who was the winner of this battle? Was it the sponge brain Indians or the understanding Americans?

DISCLAIMER **No matter what education you receive, it’s always a gift that we should never take advantage of. Kids across the world complain every morning, but they don’t realize that there’s another side to the world. Many kids don’t get to go to school, but they want to badly. Respect education.**

Top 5 East Asian Cities to Visit

What makes a certain city stand out to me? Maybe it’s the food, maybe it’s all the shopping that could be done (the knick knacks they sell in East Asia are soo cute!). The historical significance of a city can certainly make me further enjoy the stay at a city, while the pop culture can be pretty cool too. Or maybe that city has some really interesting attractions. Here I have compiled a list of the top 5 cities in the East that you have to visit, extremely popular or not (mostly popular though).

5.Hong Kong

Hong Kong is especially popular for its shopping, probably due to the sheer amount of items both expensive or cheap available (or maybe because there’s no sales tax). From specialty knives to vintage shops to crowded markets, there’s always something eye catching out there. One of the most popular attractions is Victoria Peak to take great panoramic pictures of Hong Kong. Take the peak tram to have the illusion  of seeing the buildings fall. Visit during the night for a more dramatic tilt. Hop on the Star Ferry to see Hong Kong’s iconic skyscrapers from Victoria Bay. Hong Kong is a great place for Cantonese opera. Some museums to visit are the Hong Kong Museum of History, Hong Kong Heritage Museum, and the Comix Home Base. The Liangyi Museum has some of the best antique furniture from the Ming and Qing dynasties. A bonus is that you can sit or touch anything in the museum, there isn’t anything that is roped off. Hong Kong is famed for all it’s outdoor space. And make sure to taste some of the Cantonese cuisine or street foods. If you are really into Disney you could visit Disney Land Hong Kong. Hong Kong is also an amazing city to visit to take pictures.

4. Seoul

A mecca of glittering skyscrapers, Seoul is a city not to miss. Myeongdong and Dongdaemun are popular tourist attractions, particularly for their shopping (especially for Korean beauty products). Shops at Myeongdong are well known for being extremely generous with freebies. Since Seoul is the South Korean capitol, tourists can visit Cheong Wa Dae, nicknamed the Blue House, the executive office and the official residence of their president. The Olympic Park, located in Gangnam, south of the Han River is a very popular park. Two relatively popular museums are the National Museum and the War Memorial of Korea. The world’s fifth tallest skyscraper, the Lotte World Tower, resides in Lotte World (the world’s largest indoor theme park in the world), which is basically a Korean Disney. Changdeokgung is a popular palace to visit while Jogye-sa is a popular temple to visit. Kpop fans, especially those who love SM groups may enjoy visiting SMTown Coex Artium while Kdrama lovers may visit  filming locations. Make sure to visit the Namdaemun Market for South Korea’s famous street food.

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3. Xian

What is in my opinion one of the most underrated cities in Asia, you should never miss out on Xian in any trip to China. While Xian doesn’t have amazing shopping, it makes it up with their culture and food. China’s capital city for some of its most prominent dynasties, including the Tang dynasty, giving countless aifacts to display in museums like the Shaanxi History Museum where you can see an entire wall showing various gold hair pieces from the Tang dynasty or pots with holes on the bottom that don’t leak thanks to gravity. In the Muslim quarter you can find Huimin road, where Xian street foods are sold everywhere.  Make sure to try the biang biang noodles. The Terre Cotta Army(located in Qin Shi Huang’s Mausoleum) is a symbol of ancient China. For literature loving people there’s the Stelae Museum, showcasing over 1000 stone stelae, or inscribed tablets from different eras. There are nine Confucian classics and rubbings(copies) are made in the fourth gallery. Nearby is the City Wall from the Ming dynasty. The ruins of the oldest example of the Neolithic culture can be seen at the Xian Banpo Museum. The Big Goose Pagoda houses sutras brought by Xuan  Zang, whose pilgrimage inspired the classic Chinese novel Journey to the West. Other attractions include the Small Goose Pagoda and the Huaqing Hot Springs. Image result for taipei images

2. Taipei

The street foods are pretty well known but a must-try is bubble tea after all, Taipei is the birthplace of bubble tea! The most iconic building is definitely Taipei 101(shown above). The National Palace Museum houses many of the imperial family’s treasures from the Qing dynasty, taken from the Forbidden City. The gallery has about 7,000 permanent artifacts and artworks put into rotations. It is arguably one of the best museums of its kind. There is also the Miniatures Museum of Taiwan, which collects miniatures. Other popular tourist attractions include the Elephant Mountain, the Longshan Temple, and the Chiang Kai-Shek Memorial Hall.

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1. Tokyo

Tokyo is basically a series of small cities with their own unique charm merged together. For example the Ginza district is shopping heaven and is also well known for its food and entertainment while the Akihabara district(nicknamed the Akihabara Electric Town) is the electronics capitol. The people there are also famous for their love of anime.Tokyo is also home to Asia’s most visited tourist attraction, Disneyland Tokyo! No, I’m not kidding. There are also many museums there, like the Edo-Tokyo Museum, which shows how Tokyo went from small fishing town Edo to the super modern, Asian fashion capitol that it is today. For food lovers there are so many restaurants to go to. Did you know that Tokyo has the most Michelin-starred restaurants in the world(beating out Paris)? Some popular tourist attractions include the Meiji Shrine, Tokyo Tower as well as the Tokyo Skytree.

 

Top 5 creation/discoveries made by Indians

indian-flag-collageOur world depends on creations/discoveries from the past or the present. We are learning new stuff every day! Life would be extremely tough without the internet, our smartphones, electricity and much more. Nobody pays attention to the creators of these necessities. Many important contributions come from India. In this post, I will report on five India creations/discoveries that have an importance in our world.

 

Criteria:

Before you start to argue with my choices, placements, reasoning, etc, hear me out. I chose five very important and interesting creations/discoveries that were created by Indians. At a first glance, these creations might not seem very Indian. It’s mandatory that these creations/discoveries have an impact on our society today. They don’t have to be the most mind-blowing. The impact should be positive and be helping. Enough rules, let’s get started!

 

 

Herbal shampoo – #5Image result for herbal shampoo

Very first on the list is herbal shampoo. Shampoo cleans your hair, gives it a nice smell and makes it perfect. Without it, your hair would be a disaster. In India, women used herbal shampoo (not the regular shampoo we use today) to cleanse their hair. In ancient India, they made their hair cleansers by extracting the essence from the herbs. With some preparation and work, you have some herbal shampoo at your service. This shampoo helps in the growth of your hair and once used, it leaves the hair shiny, soft and manageable.  Never knew that shampoo had such an intricate history.

    

Cotton cultivation – #4Image result for cotton cultivation

Coming in at number four is cotton cultivation. This use of cotton was worldly created, but the Indians have the first record of using it. In those time, an Indian created a machine that took out the seeds from the cotton. This made it easier to use the cotton in creating clothes.  

Cotton was and is such an importance to people. Till this day, cotton is widely used and it has a great impact on us even today.

 

Chess – #3Image result for chess india

Coming in at number three is chess. A strategic game that may be hard for some, but not for the Indians, as they are the creators. Chess was brought in the 6th century (A.D). Chess was created during the Gupta empire’s time. It spread to the Persians. Once the Arabs took over the Persians, chess was spread to the Muslims. From there people believe that it spread to Europe and so on.

In ancient India, chess was called, Chaturanga. That means the four divisions, this is how the pieces were created. Infantry, cavalry, elephantry, and chariotry signify the pawns, knights, bishops, and rooks. It involves thinking, strategies and patience. Chess is not as important as the Taj Mahal (speaking of it, HERE is one of my post about the Taj), but it’s a game that went through history and time. It gives us some enjoyment in boring times.

 

Water on the moon – #2 Image result for water on the moon

One of a more recent discovery by an Indian was the discovery of water on the moon. On September 27, 2009, an Indian spacecraft (Chandrayaan-1) found the existence of water on the moon. Many countries have been searching into this, but India was the first to prove this.

Chandrayaan-1 was launched to Shackleton Crater, a crater on the south pole of the moon. The outer is exposed to sunlight, while the other part is in the depths of shade. It those depths, was where they found icy water.

On the Chandrayaan-1, there is a feature called, Moon Mineralogy Mapper (M3). This found the existence of hydrogen in multiple sections on the moon. They found that under the shadowed areas, there is an estimate of 600 million metric ton of icy water. Indians brought our world a leap forward in the discoveries of our universe.

    If you want a more scientific look at this, HERE is a very fascinating report by NASA.  

 

Zero – #1Image result for zero india

Coming in at number one is zero. Zero has a very interesting case, it was said to be created in Ancient India, Babylon, and the Mayan Civilization. Many say that it all come back to the Indians and they were the first to have created it. Zero came around the year of 458 A.C, the days when math equations were chanted instead of written. In 682, an Indian astronomer and mathematician (Brahmagupta) created a symbol for zero, tiny dot beneath numbers. Brahmagupta constructed equations using zero, ways to get to zero and using zero in an equation. That was when zero was considered its own number and a symbol.

India got such credit as they use it correctly. Over the centuries, zero spread into the world. Zero is extremely important to us when we use it. It is a part of our counting system and a signification of nothing in the mathematical sense. Without the creation of zero, maybe math wouldn’t be so complicated. 

 

Our world has been striving. But, the world would be incomplete without these creations. 

   

 

Hawa Mahal

hawa-mahal-jaipur

How many windows are in your house? Probably not as many as the Hawa Mahal, the window for the women.

The palace was constructed in 1799, Jaipur, Rajasthan, India. The Mahal is known for its windows, history and beauty. It includes 935 windows. Why so many windows? Well, to fully understand, you must understand what Hawa Mahal is in english. Hawa means wind and Mahal means palace, together it’s the Wind palace.

As the wind flew, the women gazed the streets. The Hawa Mahal  was initially built for the royal women. Since, in those days women were not allowed to roam the streets freely, the king hired Lal Chand Ustad. This way the women could experience, attend and enjoy the street festivals.

The Wind palace is five-stories tall and has an exterior honeycomb pattern. As I mentioned before, Lal Chand was hired to build to Hawa Mahal. He made the bricks a red sandy colour, therefore the Hawa Mahal would match the other monuments in the city. This is why you might have heard the phrase Pink City (that’s what they call Jaipur).

Much lies in the heart of the world, but the heart lies in the Hawa Mahal.

 

 

Zhangjiajie

Zhangjiajie is a popular tourist attraction in Hunan, a province in China, known for its breathtaking mountains covering 9,518 kilometers squared. Many attractions weren’t designed for the faint-hearted; the elevators are really long and are extremely fast. It’s also a good idea for those who are aerophobic to avoid the glass walkway. Many say that the best time to visit it is at sunrise or sunset when the early morning mist is around the mountains.

Zhangjiajie houses many several endangered  such as the Chinese salamander, the Chinese water deer and the clouded leopard.

Fun fact: the floating mountains in Avatar were inspired by the mountains in Zhangjiajie.

Much lies in the heart of the heart of the world, but the heart lies in Zhangjiajie.

 

Taj Mahal

taj       Imagine you passed away, your wealthy partner is heartbroken. Would he/she build a grand monument in your dedication? (To be honest, I don’t think so) Only once in the world has there been such a case.

The year was 1593, Mumtaz Mahal died (she was the favorite wife of Shah Jahan). The Mughal king was in such despair. He wanted to do something, something grand in her honour. In her dedication, he built the great ivory white mausoleum, where he stored her tomb. Many years after, Shah Jahan’s tomb was also added.

The Taj Mahal displays the Mughal’s architecture. The Mughals ruled over Northern India through the 16’s and 18’s. The Taj has an architectural influence from the Indians, Persians, and Islamics. This was before 1947 (where the separation took place between the Indians and the Muslims).

The construction began in 1632. It took nearly twenty-two years to complete the Taj Mahal. Over the years, approximately 20 000 men worked hard, only to get their hands cut off. If somebody can create the Taj Mahal, then they could create anything. Shah didn’t want anything like that to happen. He cut off their hands, therefore there would be no monument such as it.

The Taj is not just a tomb. Once you enter by the enormous gates you will view the magnificent garden. To the left of the Mahal, is a mosque. On the right, is a guest room. Directly behind it, is the Yamuna river. The Yamuna is the sacred river for the Hindus.

The Taj Mahal’s size is monumental. But enough about the exterior, the interior is far more beautiful. Speaking (or should I say typing?) from experience, the inside is breathtaking. Even though I was young and was there for a few moments, it was incredible. The moment you enter, you are displayed by the caskets of Shah Jahan and Mumtaz Mahal. It’s dark at inside, but the precise designs created with marble are amazing. The Taj has no lighting system, but the shimmer from the sun and moon light the different stones with beauty.

You won’t get to visit much on the inside. In a nearby palace, you can visit the room where Shah was placed for his last eight years. Let’s just say that one of his (many) sons wanted to take his place on the throne. From there he could gaze at his wife’s tomb.

If you ever get the chance to visit, please do so. It will be crowded, but that’s the true Indian experience.

Much lies in the heart of the world, but the heart lies in the Taj Mahal.

 

 

 

 

Beijing (Part One)

The capital of China and home to several of the world’s best known monuments, Beijing is a city that cannot be missed.

I’ll start off talking about the Great Wall. The Great Wall was originally a series of several small walls surrounding various countries but after Qin Shi Huang united China, he connected them as a means of communication. So how does this exactly work? Guards would be stationed all across the wall in different watch towers and when a guard spots an enemy army, they would immediately put a fire into the tower. Nearby towers will see the flames and will put fires onto their towers. The flames will eventually reach the capital, where the emperor would prepare his troops. Little of the original wall remains, most of what we see today comes from the Ming Dynasty. The Great Wall of China also happens to be the world’s longest grave, a lot of slaves died building it.

Another well-known monument is the Forbidden City, home of the emperor from the Ming Dynasty all the way to the Qing Dynasty. Part of the Forbidden City was restored for the 2008 Beijing Olympics (they made the building’s colours more vivid). Some claim that the Forbidden City has 9,999 rooms as 9 is a lucky number in China. This, however isn’t confirmed. Many of the artifacts now reside in Taipei.

Finally, the Summer Palace. The Summer Palace was built in 1153 but was restored multiple times, most notably in 1884-95 when money meant for upgrading the navy went to Dowager Empress Cixi who spent on enlarging the palace for her sixtieth birthday. It covers around 3 square kilometers, most of which is water. It is an UNESCO World Heritage Site like the other monuments mentioned.

Much lies in the heart of the world, but the heart lies in Beijing.