This Fall semester, I was in English 1102, with Mrs. Paige Arrington. “This course is designed to develop writing skills beyond the levels of proficiency required by English 1101. It stresses critical reading and writing and incorporates several research methods. After practicing the skills acquired in English 1101, by the end of the course, students will be able to, analyze, evaluate, document, and draw inferences from various sources. Identify, select, and analyze appropriate research methods, research questions, and evidence for a specific rhetorical situation. Practice argumentative strategies and genres in order to engage various audiences. Integrate others’ ideas with their own. Use grammatical, stylistic, and mechanical formats and conventions appropriate to rhetorical situations and audience constraints. Produce well-reasoned, argumentative writing demonstrating rhetorical engagement. Reflect on what contributed to their writing process and evaluate their own work”. Throughout the semester, we completed a variety of projects, daily lessons, and activities. Such as The Notebook, The Definition Essay, The Digital Notebook, The AMQ Research Project, The Final Assessment and others like going over chaos, particulars and seeing relationships. Overall, after completing this course I would say that I feel very accomplished, I received A’s overall in all my projects and I believe that I fully gained the ability to be able to do everything that this course wished for us to leave with.
The first assignment that I believe to be very significant in this class that we focused on was at the very beginning of the semester and that was The Notebook. I believe that this is what got me to start off well in the class. This assignment caught my attention and really engaged me in the class and the material. This project I remember I put so much effort into. I would write about 5 entries or more daily, write pages and pages just for one entry, and fully become descriptive on my right side. I truly enjoyed this and I felt that this was my own personal journal in which I write whatever I felt, or wanted to. I remember that I finished with about 70 entries when the minimum was 25. The night before the conference for this assignment I remember that I stayed on the library from 3pm until 1 am trying to add the final touches. I know this hard work paid off because I received an A. I believe that this was the first thing in this class that taught me that every type of writing has a meaning and this prepared me for the rest of the projects that came throughout the semester.
One of the next biggest projects of the semester that came into play was The definition essay. The definition essay was to be 4-5 pages of organized writing that clearly and sensibly thinks through an extended definition of a term or phrase. I did my assignment on defining the term “American”. I felt that here I found the proper way to define a term the way I see fit and I found the resources and the way to support it. That is shown immediately in the first sentence of my paper. “To be “American” means to be responsible for your own basic needs as you live in America. It means to educate your children in America, to pay taxes in America, and to contribute to a working community in America”. My paper ended up being 5 full pages with about 8 works cited. In the rubric, it also said that it could be a portfolio of work (scraps of paper, sketches, drafts of paragraphs, sentences, recorded conversations, notebook entries, paper drafts, etc.) that document the thinking leading to the paper. I feel I did this twice and that can be seen here… “An interview was conducted with Madalyn Schultz who was born and raised in New York and is currently a freshman at Georgia State University. This interview was done to get her perspective and definition on the topic of “American”.
The third big semester project was the digital notebook, in which I felt that this gave a turn to what we had been doing in the class and that is because it gave me a new perspective to my writing and a new medium to do it on. The grading for this project was I needed to employ a greater use of the blog (more blog entries), demonstrate the blog as a meaning-making space through the use of themes, metadata, organizational structures, multimedia, and other affordances of the blog space and contain a physitech notebook that considers specific moments in your experience working with the blog as a meaning-making space. I believe that my blog page contained all these factors to be placed in the “more than minimum” criteria. The minimum was 6 entries and I completed about 9 or more and I also focused on adding in my own personal thoughts on the project which falls under containing a physitech notebook. I put in a lot of effort trying to figure out how to best format my page and in what was best to add into the blog space that would help support my research. The only thing that I did have to alter and re-do was the format/structure because it was a little confusing.
The last two ends of semester projects were the AMQ research project and this final overview assessment paper. For the AMQ research I would say that I put a lot of effort into this project as well and I say this because this was probably the toughest project out of all of them for me. That is because since the very beginning that we received the general outline worksheet that we needed to complete I got confused and stuck on what we had to do and what I wanted to focus on for the quilt. Eventually, after meeting with Mrs.Arrington and receiving a clear step by step, I was able to begin the flow and I feel that because of this I was able to find these sources that I did to support what I chose to focus on and write the research paper that I did. The rubric for this project said that it had to be a Digital web page or group of posts/pages, minimum of 750-1000 words; MLA or APA formatted, in which, the writing offers an interesting, cohesive interpretation of your researched experience of one of the quilt blocks or panels of the AIDS Memorial Quilt (AMQ), that offers an interesting, cohesive interpretation of your researched experience of one of the quilt blocks or panels of the AMQ. I feel that I accomplished all of that. Lastly, this final overview assessment, is to be completed today, on our final day of class in order to look at what this course wanted for us to accomplish throughout the semester and by the end of it, see how we accomplished our projects, the effort we put into them and what grades we received.
Overall, after completing a semester of English 1102, I believe that both myself and my teacher accomplished the description and purpose of this course. I feel that this course has made me a better writer, a more advanced one, and one who can now understand and see meaning in everything and every writing that I do. I feel very happy with this course and feel that I put a lot of effort into it as well as was very engaged in it from the beginning until the end. I feel very happy with the grades that I received and was able to accomplish. I want to thank my teacher for her work, and for allowing me to become the student and writer that I am today.