Browsing articles in "Kids’ Panel"

Kris Is Not Thrilled About ‘Space Between Us’

Mar 22, 2017   //   by Kris   //   Age 9-15, Kids' Panel  //  No Comments

A mission to Mars… A mistake… A cover up… Star-crossed lovers…

Space Between Us is science fiction movie (rated PG-13) that’s main focus is on human relations, in particular, love.

A group is sent to Mars to colonize the planet because Earth won’t be able to sustain us forever. Unfortunately, on Mars, a lead astronaut dies giving birth. The child born on Mars has to be kept a secret from humanity on Earth as to not ruin the reputation of the company that planned to colonize Mars. Gardner Elliot, the first human born on Mars feels alone. He has only met less than 15 people consisting of astronauts and scientists; who have raised him into a very brilliant child. He managed to forge an unlikely friendship with a girl on Earth named Tulsa, through an internet chat room. Gardner really wants to meet Tulsa, find his father, and experience Earth. However, his body wouldn’t survive on Earth due to the effects of zero gravity on him during pregnancy. He has an enlarged heart and his bone density and lungs might not be able to handle Earth’s atmosphere.

Luckily, with a surgery and rehabilitation/training; he was able to go to Earth. When he was on Earth, he was quarantined in NASA to run tests for abnormalities that could jeopardize his time on Earth. The tests seem never ending and the likelihood of Gardner actually taking in Earth is dim. Gardner decides to escape. He eventually finds Tulsa, a sharp girl that has been bouncing from foster home to foster home. She is very upset that Gardner hasn’t messaged her in seven months, but she forgives him and agrees to help him find his father.

On the search for his father, Gardner comes to encounter the wonders of Earth and love. Within this movie, there are many good qualities and not so good qualities. I adored the amount of detail put into the movie, for example, Gardener walking funny when he arrived on Earth due to the change in gravity, or the effects of space on the body (osteogenesis imperfecta). The producer and co-writer, Richard Lewis put in a lot of effort for realism; he consulted with experts from NASA, physicians, flight surgeons, astronauts and Hubbard.

The film had lots of action and different changes of scenery which kept it exciting. However, the story was just okay. The characters all have interesting backstories and interesting quirks but they weren’t fully fleshed-out. Unfortunately, the movie went by too fast to grow a strong connection with the characters. The main part of the movie, the love between the star-crossed lovers felt disappointing and cheesy. I could sum it up in two easy words ‘puppy love’. “Gardner Elliot: [to Tulsa] I was scared I wouldn’t know how to be human. You made me human, and no matter what happens, it was worth it. All of it.”

The ending, in particular, felt dissatisfying, I felt a lot the problems were unresolved and everyone just went back to how things were in the beginning.  It was a typical teen love movie that had the special element of Mars. The premise of the movie was interesting but the movie’s plot was underwhelming. In my opinion, it receives 3/5 rating.

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James reviews the iPhone 6s

Mar 15, 2017   //   by James   //   Age 16-19, Kids' Panel  //  No Comments

For my 15th birthday I was able to upgrade from the iPhone 5c to last year’s model, the iPhone 6s.

I really have enjoyed it, from the improved processor to the improved camera. One of my favourite improvements is the upgrade from a 4-inch screen to a 4.7-inch screen. It’s the perfect size for using one or two hands.

Some of my other favourite things include the design change, force touch, and the ability to jailbreak.

The only downside I have found with this phone is that the camera sticks out about half a centimetre from the phone which means without a case it could get damaged.

This has by far been my favourite release from Apple. I would strongly recommend this to anyone who likes Apple products, likes the size of the display, or likes having a headphone jack!

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Ava Joy Sings Her Praise!

Mar 8, 2017   //   by Ava Joy   //   Age 4-8, Kids' Panel  //  No Comments

Ava Joy tells you about the best parts of the movie Sing! Also, check out her bonus video where she shows you a craft you can make after you watch the movie.

BONUS VIDEO:

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Julia is Hoping For a Snow Day

Mar 1, 2017   //   by Julia   //   Age 16-19, Kids' Panel  //  No Comments

It’s a weeknight and you look out the window and see that it has begun to snow, and you get excited. Very excited. You get the glimmer of hope that all school age children get of a day off and a chance to sleep in. You race to the nearest phone, laptop or tablet to check the weather report for the following morning and you see that it’s going to keep on snowing through the night. You only have one more step before you’re convinced.

You open the browser and head over to snowdaypredictor.com, the trusted source and master of all snow day knowledge. This is the “make or break.” You punch in your postal code and you wait anxiously for the percentage. The page loads. YES! 87% chance! An almost guaranteed snow day. You go to bed that night planning everything you’re going to do the following day.

Snow Day Predictor | Calculate the chance of a snow day for tomorrow!

What I have just described is something we have all experienced at some point. We all have had those nights before school where we get excited because of a potential snow day, and try our best to make the prediction of if our wishes are going to become a reality. Now, there is just something that is helping give answers to those night time “what if’s.” Technology. In this modern age that we live in, it is becoming ever more prevalent — there really is technology available for every aspect of life. If you had said to kids 20 years ago, “Hey, in the future you can predict a snow day by percentage just by simply punching in your postal code,” they probably wouldn’t have believed you. That’s why it’s such a neat thing.

In my own school, it’s a widely used product. As soon as one kid looks out the window and sees that there is snow coming down, they will quickly pull up the website and start telling the people around them what the percentage is. There has been many a time that I have walked into a classroom and heard hushed whispers of numbers and the chance of a snow day. There was one day in particular that stands out in memory for me. This was the legendary day that the prediction was 99%. Word of this ungodly high number spread like wildfire to the point where even the teachers were aware of it. Kids my age trusted the source so much that some of them even took the gamble of not doing their homework.

It seems that my peers and kids alike use Snow Day Predictor as a trusted source of knowledge and don’t resist to put all their faith into the predictions it makes. In the winter, the website is treated as if it is the epicentre of all known weather/school knowledge, and I’m sure it will remain that way for many school kids to come.

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There’s No Middle Ground with Solange’s Thoughts on ‘Stuck In The Middle’

Feb 22, 2017   //   by Solange   //   Age 9-15, Kids' Panel  //  Comments Off on There’s No Middle Ground with Solange’s Thoughts on ‘Stuck In The Middle’

Nine-year-old Solange lays out the best traits of Stuck In The Middle.

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James Enjoys The Weeknd

Feb 8, 2017   //   by James   //   Age 16-19, Kids' Panel  //  Comments Off on James Enjoys The Weeknd

Starboy – The Weeknd

On November 25th The Weeknd released his fourth studio album with the name Starboy. This name is also the name of his chart top hit “Starboy”. It contains 18 songs with collaborations from artists Future, Kendrick Lamar, Lana Del Rey and Daft Punk. He currently has all 18 songs in the Hot 100 charts as well as the Spotify Global Top 50! That makes him making up about 1/5 and 1/3 of the charts.

I personally really enjoy this album, it has become my favourite album to date. I feel it has such a wide variety of sounds that avoids the problem of songs having a similar sound or beat. Currently, my Top 3 favourite songs from the album are (in no specific order): “True Colors”, “Six Feet Under” and “Reminder”. The song “True Colors” is a slower take for The Weeknd and provides a soft, calming sound that just makes you want to sing along. “Six Feet Under” is one of those songs that puts you in the mood to dance and get excited. Finally, the reason I like his song “Reminder” is because it sounds the most like his old music and is a song to all of his haters. I’d definitely recommend this album to anyone!

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Julia is Enchanted by ‘La La Land’

Feb 1, 2017   //   by Julia   //   Age 16-19, Kids' Panel  //  Comments Off on Julia is Enchanted by ‘La La Land’

La La Land is a movie musical made for dreamers. It’s here to inspire, and put a whimsical smile on your face. With its old fashioned musical feel it’s a movie spectacular that left me mesmerized. As a big fan of movie musicals such as Grease, Singing in the Rain and Across the Universe I knew going into this film that it would be right up my alley. Trust me when I say I am not exaggerating my words that this movie truly took my breath way.  A movie like this only comes once in awhile and is a treasure to see in theatres.

The movie follows the story of  Mia (Emma Stone) and Sebastian (Ryan Gosling), their relationship to each other, and reaching their goals out in the land of dreams, Los Angeles. Both of our protagonists have their own dreams, Mia, an actress, wants to be a star and, Sebastian, a jazz musician,  wishes to open his own club. The movie follows them as they both try and fail and succeed their way through this fantastical tale.

Though both characters have different dreams I think most people would be able to relate to their stories for the simple fact that we all have tried to reach our eventual goals that we have clung to all our lives. It’s the strive to do what we love and to reach that. It’s the thing that our heart has desired to do since we were young. And I think that anyone watching this movie would notice that and be able to relate to it. I certainly felt that way. I came out of the theatre feeling refreshed and inspired to get back on track with achieving my dream. So if you’re a believer, or you just love musicals then I would recommend you go, spend an evening being taken away by this wonderfully stunning film. It awakens the dreamer in us all.

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Ava Joy Reviews ‘Trolls’

Jan 25, 2017   //   by Ava Joy   //   Age 4-8, Kids' Panel  //  Comments Off on Ava Joy Reviews ‘Trolls’

She wants to tell you about the movie Trolls, but she won’t reveal the ending!

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Emanuel Reads Up on Training Dragons

Jan 11, 2017   //   by Emanuel   //   Age 4-8, Kids' Panel  //  Comments Off on Emanuel Reads Up on Training Dragons

I love How to Train Your Dragon because it is very funny and cool. The main character is a boy named Hiccup. He has a dragon named Toothless who is very annoying and also very small. Hiccup is very smart and he is the heir to the Viking tribe, the Hairy Hooligans. Hiccup has a friend named Fishlegs who does not know how to swim and is afraid of the dark. Hiccup also has another friend named Camacazi who is super talented. One of her talents is being funny while she is battling. She distracts her opponents by talking a lot and making fun of them. After she battled another Viking named Norbert the Nutjob, she said to him “practice Norbert, that’s what you need.’’

I like the How to Train Your Dragon books because of the adventures that Hiccup goes on. His adventures are complex and weird. One of the adventures that Hiccup went on was going to recover the treasure of his grandfather, Grimbeard the Gastly. The treasure was protected by dragons named Skullions who could not see but had good scent. The treasure was booby-trapped with a scent that attracted the Skullions and Hiccup just escaped. All of this exciting and complex action is why I like How To Train Your Dragon SO Much!

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Kris Passes the Time with ‘Color Switch’

Jan 4, 2017   //   by Kris   //   Age 9-15, Kids' Panel  //  Comments Off on Kris Passes the Time with ‘Color Switch’

Color Switch is an app by Fortafy Games. It’s an addictive game in which you tap to move a ball through a variety of obstacles. The colour of the ball must match the colour of the obstacle otherwise you will have to start the level again. There are bunches of different balls to collect and different game modes to play. You can collect stars when playing different levels. The stars collected can then be used to buy unique balls. The game design changes according to the holidays/seasons.

It’s a great app to waste time by playing endless mode or the plethora of levels in all very distinct game modes. Color Switch is a challenging game that requires your attention and quick reflexes.

It’s hard to lose interest because new modes are constantly being added, and the game style changes too. The layout is colourful and bright, which is eye-catching. The game can become frustrating and tedious, however, since you only have one chance to complete the level, causing you to play the same level over and over. That is, unless you decide to watch an ad to skip a level or to get an extra life, but the extra life option only works if you’re near the end of the level. There’s also a lot of ads on the game, which is quite tiresome.

In conclusion, Color Switch is a very entertaining free game that doesn’t require wi-fi and can be enjoyed by all ages. It’s annoying when you struggle to beat a level and a wave of ads barrage you. Nonetheless, it’s a great time waster and has a colourful appearance.

 

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The Kids' Panel

Meet our kids' panel: a savvy group of kids with a strong point of view about the media and the culture they consume. Culturally diverse, a range of age and interests, they'll provide you with an insight into kids' media ... what works, what doesn't and why. Check back often for new reviews. We think you'll be inspired!

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