Response to group’s essays

Giuseppe Biondi

ENG 1121 

Prof. Carrie Hall 

During our lives, everyone needs to go to school so that we can educate our self by learning. In most cases what really matters for us can change during the years. Some can love school, and some might be more interested in something else. What I think really matters is that at the end of the trip we’ve accomplished what makes us happy.

Now kids and teenagers like us, most of the time are given classes at school which really don’t matter in terms of interest, what I mean is that the class and the teacher that teaches the class can be the best in the world but the student will still not be interested as much and the class at that point is just a waste of time for the student.

I think that there are a lot of ways that can be integrated in a school program which can result in students having more interest to keep going in the classes and not being bored of it. One of the ways I think can really help that, is what really matters for us and who do we want to be. Choosing has a kid can be difficult because we can change our minds a day or the other, what I suggest is to have more classes that we can choose during the course of our school years. That can really help understanding what we really want to do. So, every semester let’s say we have to choose like 6 classes 2 of them should mandatory and the other 4 we should choose, and the ones we have to choose can then be taken more than one time and the class of course will be a more advanced one. I think that this is one of the ways which can help school classes become more interesting for students.

Draft 1

Growing up in an immigrant family was never easy. From education to real world problems, here I will talk about the hardships and obstacles I have faced throughout my life.
Both my parents came from Ecuador for a better life. Not only for themselves but for their kids, my siblings and I. If there’s one thing I learn it’s that determination and grit can pave the way for anything you want. As long as you have the hunger within you, you will accomplish your goal. So I was taught.
English at home was never spoken. Coming from immigrants parents, this was the norm. Spanish here, Spanish there, Spanish everywhere. This made the English language even harder to perfect. I’ve always despised English class with their vague questions. “Think of a time when this happened causing this to happen.” I mean like seriously? This requires too much thinking and analyzing for me. Every assignment given are very open ended with various responses being correct. It seems that I struggle with articulating my thoughts and ideas onto paper. When we had assignments give to us in Elementary School, I struggled with completing them at home. I was surrounded with the Spanish language getting thrown at me left and right. Nobody at home was help, something I needed. I remember always getting 3’s on my ELA state test and asking myself “how?” I was NEVER able to get above a 3, whereas math, I would never get below a 4. This killed the slight passion I had left for the English language, I just gave up.
There were plenty of times in high school where were given essay assignments to complete based on books we have read. Whenever I thought I had written a piece of art, it turns out it was complete shit and I would received a 65-70 on it. Weirdly enough, whenever I thought u bombed an essay, it did pretty good, receiving an 85+. These series of events baffle and to this day it still occurs. English is complicated and I will never be able to perfect this craft or art (whatever you want to call it) no matter how much I try. Even if I do it ends up flunking.

Personal Breakthrough Draft

Santi Gill



I was walking to my house after work, still in my ugly green sweater, with the cool air surrounding me and the sun setting on the city. I see my mom walk out, purse on one shoulder, and ask me to come with her to the store, so I go with her. She offered to pay for whatever I get, so I got a sandwich, and she got her things. The cook there was good. Don’t know his name, but I’d guess through healthy racial profiling that he was a Mexican man. But what mattered was not his looks, but whether or not the food he makes is good, and it always is. Ordering my food, the cook forgot what was in the type of sandwich I told him. My mom got mad at that, so I had to give her the rundown that not everybody has photographic memory, and that he cant remember everything on the menu and what’s gonna be in it. At my own job it’s kind of similar, but instead of food, its balloons that are available behind the cash register. Customers usually describe what type of balloon it is rather than say the number we put on top of it, so I have to turn around and look to see what they mean instead of just putting in the three numbers.

When she had finished with what she was buying and while I was waiting on the food, my mom got tired of the lady in front of her waiting to get change and bumped into her. The lady my mom bumped into just looked at her, and continued to deal with the cashier to get her change. All the while my mom is talking under her breath at her. The lady gets her things, talks under her breath back at my mom, before screaming at her before leaving the store, which causes her to try and go after the lady, which forces me to hold my mom back. I thought the whole thing was kind of funny. Two cops had been inside the store, also waiting on food, and the main reason I hadn’t gotten mine. My mom took notice of them and tried to explain what happened, prompting the cops to explain to her that if she tried to go after the lady, she would have been arrested. She had a fit and because of this was allowed to take what she put on the counter for free. It would have been nice if that was the motivation behind it. But no, just her being her I guess. I just wanted my damn sandwich. I ended up getting the sandwich for free too, but at the end of the day, I dont think she should have been mad at the cook or the lady, it didn’t make sense. I learned from then on that going to the store with my mom might not bring about good luck to the people around us, so I choose not to, unless I get a free sandwich.


Rough Draft for Thursday

Ever since I was a little kid, I loved the game of basketball. The speed of the game, intensity, and aggressiveness always got me excited to watch the stars play. It was a unique sport to me which led me to picking up a basketball at the age of 10. I would go to the backyard of my house just to practice by dribbling around. My older cousin would take me to the local parks to shoot around. It was when I was 13 I actually learned the correct way to play basketball. My friends and I went to an indoor court and one of my friend’s cousin showed up. He was the one who taught me how to shoot the ball correctly, how to dribble the ball in many ways, and how to play defense. I don’t believe people when they say that Basketball is just a game. I believe that basketball can teach people a lot of things in their lives. One of the lessons I learned was that life isn’t fair. I soon learned that when the referees in the game were making horrible calls or calls that didn’t make sense at the time. It seemed that all the calls that were being made never went our way and the referee never made the correct call when the call needed to be made. This happened a lot in a lot of games so I learned to accept it and just move on. Another lesson it taught me was how to have good sportsmanship. Whenever my team and I win games, we don’t brag that we are the better team or anything. We just shake the other team’s hands and tell them it was a good game. Even when we lose, we don’t get mad for losing. We just do the same thing if we win. Another lesson I learned from basketball is that nothing comes easy in life. It all comes down to hard work and dedication. A lot of the stars in the league states that they didn’t make it here by luck but by all the hard work they put in everyday to deserve to be in the league. This doesn’t only go for basketball but for careers as well. If you put in the work and dedication, you will be successful. Basketball has also taught me to not dwell on my mistakes but to learn from them. If I don’t make a shot or lose my dribble, I just get back on defense and don’t mess up on the next possession. The most important lesson that basketball has probably taught me is leadership and communication. Basketball is a team sport and in every team there’s a captain. If the team isn’t communicating, I step up and take control of the team. I would tell them what play to run and they would respond by doing the play. To a lot of people, Basketball is just a game but I believe it can teach people these things by playing the sport. It is a gateway to learning life lessons.

Draft Pavel Nunez

Pavel Nunez

Dr Carrie Hall


English 1121


Sometimes in life I always get lucky and that’s just how it is .But it wasn’t the luck that helped me , it was the effort that lead me to that luck . The time this happened to was actually recent, When I passed my  Computer System Technology class. So it was the beginning of the semester of 2018 and this class was required for my major so I said to myself “ This class should be easy”. I was wrong(like really wrong) ,but that didn’t stop me from having doubts. It was an 8 AM class so that wasn’t really a good choice but I wanted to get out early so that was the trade off. At first the class wasn’t too difficult the following 2 months because we were doing basic stuff. But after that it was complex and there was a lot of rules to cover when coding, and I noticed people around me were far worse where I was. Some people would look over my screen after showing the professor my program that runs correctly. Sometimes they would ask me for help and I helped them but it was still difficult for them( I don’t blame them). But overall i knew what I was doing even though it was difficult to comprehend the material being given to me. Sometimes I would leave early because I already did all the classwork which was a good thing. Fast forward to November 6(which was the last day to drop a Class), I was debating whether or not to drop the class because I didn’t really like my major anymore(Computer Science). I decided not to because that would’ve been a waste of time and money. The next day out of the original 30 students that signed up for the class only 8 people remained. But my friend that was in that class actually dropped it since it was too difficult for him. It was sorda disappointing that my only friend in that class decided to withdraw but it was his decision. Furthermore I had a test coming which I didn’t know about because I was too lazy to check the syllabus, I didn’t know what was going to be on the test so I just accepted my fate that I was going to fail the test. The day I took the test, I didn’t expect it to be almost the same exact things we had to as classwork, So I dodged a bullet on that one and I passed the test for it.So finally it was near the semester and I had to take  my final. Suddenly this person who I thought supposedly dropped the class showed for the final after nearly being absent for 2 months, My professor was actually quite mad at him but he couldn’t do anything so he just let him take the test, When the test started he only took a couple of minutes it finish it and left the class, even though there was around 15-30 lines of code that you have to write down for a few problems,which was basically impossible to write under 20 minutes). Some people had to resort to cheating( No names) by looking up the program for the specific problem, the professor was just using his laptop and actually caught someone using their phone, He gave him a warning instead of giving him a 0 ( which was generous.), I said to myself “Wow, he was lucky”. So after finishing I just went home to sleep and hoped I passed the class. Then I checked my grade and I got a B+ thinking I would get a C or maybe lower. But in the end I passed.

Overall life isn’t mostly about luck but how much you effort you put in to get that luck.

Mother Tongue: Michael Vignoles

Michael Vignoles

Hall 1121


Making the Impossible Possible

Growing up I was fortunate enough to be adopted by college scholars that I’m grateful to call my parents. My farther migrated from England and achieved a masters in Mathematics, and my mother went to college for Nursing, and years later is double majored in Criminal Psychology. So unlike Amy Tan, there was a consequence if I were not to speak proper and sophisticate english, especially if we were in public. However, like Amy Tan and her mother, reading and writing was not my strongest ability. I struggled with the similar problems like being judge by others and how society saw me as an individual. English and Writing was never my strongest trait while growing up but always excelled in STEM classes. (Science, technology, engineering, and mathematics)

School in general I always had to work harder, and study longer through nights to just get a B in school. I constantly compared myself to my siblings who flew by their classes like it was a walk in the park. I remember in elementary school my older brother won the Spelling B in his grade. As his younger brother I would always look up to him and I wanted to win a Spelling B too . My mother helped me study what seemed to be an endless list of words for weeks. We made sayings to help me remember the words that I couldn’t remember. To this day when I think of the word “decision,” I say the word in my head as “Dec-is-sion.” The day of the Spelling B finally came and I have never been more prepared for anything in my life. I was ready to win. When I’m up on the stage, I realize the judges are giving the other kids words I never studied for. Then when it was my turn they gave me words that I just have to sound out and hope for the best. Later, I founded out that I was given the list of words for the grade above me and not the one for my class. I was devastated for weeks.

Years later we attended a new school in the city that was very test friendly. I would get pop quizzes at least once a day, depending on the class. This school would give out rewards for achieving goods grades, good conduct, and even perfect attendance. My brother and sister always got their first and second honors rewards and I wanted to bring home something too. My goal that year was to get the Perfect Attendance reward. In my head perfect attendance was the only reward that I could get because it would be a miracle just getting one 100% just one test in a semester.

I wanted to prove that I was more capable than what people thought of me. I always excelled in my STEM classes because everything was easier to comprehend. Just like how Amy Tan mentions she got B’s on the English test, but would alway do significantly better on the math and science test. She continues and states

“Math is precise, there is only one correct answer. Whereas, for me at least, the answers  on English Test were always a judgment call, a matter of opinion and personal      experience.”

I always enjoyed Math or Science because there was always one correct answer, and multiple different way to find it. I could take any path of problem solving and as long as I get to the right logical answer. However, I never gave up on my reading and writing skills.

For my last year of High School I made it to an honors Reading and Writing class. Rumors had it that this teacher had assigned essays due every week. Again, growing up it became normal to always work harder than other. That whatever task was at hand had to be done with 110% of dedication, will power, and sleepless nights. Those sleepless nights of reading and writing made my skill significantly better. This teacher helped me find my passion for reading and writing. Just like the quote above, English is portraying a story, and how my personal point of view is what makes a great story. It’s all personal experiences  and opinions on how we see things. That class helped find a passion for creative writing. That I have an unlimited source of words to portray my thoughts and feeling perfectly onto a piece of paper to show to the world. Now I would rather write an essay than trying to solve the instant velocity of a ball right before it starts to fall down again.

Just like Amy Tan reading and writing is not our strongest abilities, but we both had the passion to continue to work on our weaknesses. Furthermore, writing is now one of my strongest abilities. Amy quotes “I happen to be rebellious in nature and enjoy the challenge of disapproving assumptions made about me. I became an English major my first year of college. – I started writing nonfiction as a freelance the week after I was told by my former boss that writing is my weakest skill.” In my opinion, Amy was able to excel in writing in the same ways that I did. I always want to work hard and prove people wrong. To work on my weakness and them strengths. The way she was raised had no impact on her English. It’s the willingness to always perceiver and work hard until the impossible seems possible. Never would I have thought that I would be saying that reading and writing is one of my favorite subjects now. 

For Thursday

Please read and annotate “Mother Tongue” by Amy Tan. Please also type up a response of at least 200 words in which you answer the following question. Bring it to class!:

How does Tan’s experience with education and English compare to your experience with education and English? Think about this deeply– you might not speak Chinese, for example, but you may have been made fun of for the way you talk, or you may speak in ways that are not considered “standard.” Or maybe you do speak a totally “standard” English. If so, how do you feel when you hear someone like Tan’s mom?




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