Phase 1: Posing Real Questions

Updated 1 year 2 months ago

At Phase 1, all Microcampus students, including myself have already decided on the topic we will be doing our inquiry project in Phase 0. The topic I chose to research on is Wood Carving/Door Making. In Phase 1, we will be starting to create questions that will help guide our research on the Microcampus trip.

What I already know

At this point in this time, I do not really have much knowledge about Wood Carving/Door Making but I do have some information. Wood Carving/Door Making is a type of woodworking. Woodworking is wood pieces that are usually carved by a knife by one hand or chiseled by two hands. Even though a lot of people practice woodcarving, woodcarving is actually one of the most uncommon types of art, as the woodcarver family is mainly from China and Japan.

Where I learned this

I got this information above based on my past experiences. My art teacher from outside of SAS majors in art and always loves to share his knowledge with us when we are doing our work. One time in class we were sketching wood sculptures and the teacher shared with us some minor background about wood carving. I was always very interested in woodcarving because I would always see massive, beautiful wood carvings wherever I go. I fell that Microcampus gave me the opportunities to be able to learn more about the woodcarvings always loved and wondered. I am grateful for the knowledge I took from my art teacher and am very excited that I will be able to add more to my "What I already know" after the Microcampus experience.

What I want to learn

I want to learn more about the background of Wood Carving/Door Making, the ideas about a sculpture and also about the backgrounds of some woodcarvers. I am also interested in learning the different type of methods a wood sculpture can be carved and the carvers methods of choosing a perfect chunk of wood to carve the sculpture from. As shown above, I do not know a lot about Wood  Carving, but I really do want to learn a lot more about itI feel the inspiration for these questions comes from the wood sculptures I see. For example, this winter break I saw a wood sculpture of a hedgehog that is a pencil holder, the pencils it holds acts like the spikes of the hedgehog and I was just really amazed at the thought put into that piece of wood carving.

From this point, I began doing some additional background research about Wood Carving/Door Making. This will help me to understand my project even more before I develop my 10 major questions. You will be able to find these research in Phase 3.

After learning a lot more about the background of Wood Carving, I started developing my big questions. These questions are going to help guide my research in the village and help me focus on my topic throughout my journey in Xi Zhou. I have come up with some sample questions down below based on the knowledge I already in italic.

How to have the perfect wood for Wood Carving:

1. Are there any conditions that are needed to store logs?
It has to be kept in a room where everything is tightly secured so the woods would not grow moss.

2. What is the best duration of time for a log to be carved
When it is just cut because it will be a fresh piece of wood.

The origins of Wood Carving:

3.What is the history behind Chinese Wood Carvings?
The history goes way back and has been modified a lot.

4. Are they any backstories to Wood Carving?                                                                                                                                                                                               Stories where special Wood Carvings protect a person.

The inspirations and technicalities of Wood Carving:

5. How long does it take to master the skill, Wood Carving                                                                                                                                                                             It takes a lot of times and needs daily practice.

6. How is Wood Carvings different than other types of art craft?                                                                                                                                                          Unlike other art crafts, Wood Carving is 3D adding a complex to it.

7.What was the motivation to start Wood Carving?                                                                                                                                                                                       The freedom that you are able to have to carve and make anything you want.

Learning experiences from Wood Carving:

8. Was there a time when you had a fixed mindset about wood carving and how did you persevere.                                                                                                  When they messed up on a very important part of the piece, and they could have fixed it by having people to calm the Wood Carver down and have him to learn that she or he can always cover it up or redo it.

9. How have Wood Carvings impacted their lives?                                                                                                                                                                                                       It becomes their way of income, and most supplies in the house of a Wood Carvers is made by themselves

10. Through experiences, what have you learned from Wood Carving?                                                                                                                                                Learning how to never give up and just keep on moving ahead.

Before the Microcampus trip, I really want to have a better understanding of these questions, especially on how Wood Carving impact the Wood Carvers life itself and also the lives of people living in the village with Wood Carvings. For example, if it changed their luck or their behavers.e

Now I will begin the procedures of equipping to Microcampus, finding resources that I can use in Xi Zhou. You can find this information in Phase 2.



My name is Brandt L. and I am born in Nagoya, Japan the moved to Shanghai, China when I was two years old. I have been in the SAS community for about 5 years and it has been an amazing and a wonderful time. I have a sister called Vanessa who was part of the Microcampus E group. The 28-day Microcampus experience has been a wonderful experience that I will never forget in my life. I definitely want to visit Xizhou again in the future for the amazing community, scenery, and delicious food!