Monthly Archives: March 2015

Meet Outside the Library for Class on Wednesday

On Wednesday, April 1, we will meet outside the entrance to the library on the 4th floor of the Atrium during our class time. One of our expert librarians will introduce the library and its useful research resources to you.

During the orientation to the library, we will have some time set aside to use the research tools that the librarian demonstrates to you. Your task during this part of class will be to use the Academic Search Complete database accessible from to look at articles relating to your field of study and your future career. Find at least one article that you would like to return to and read in detail as part of your research. In your notebook, write down information that will help you find the article again: it’s title, an author’s name, the journal’s title, the issue number, the date, and the page numbers. If you have time, you can download the article and attach it to an email to yourself for safe keeping, too. Before our next meeting, write a 250 word summary of the article (or perhaps another that you find through further research in the database) in your own words followed by an MLA-formatted bibliographic entry using the guide available on the Purdue OWL website ( or the Laguardia Community College Library website (

Reading: John Medina’s Brain Rules, Memory

During the first ten minutes of class, write a summary of John Medina’s Brain Rules, Memory chapter. To help guide your summary, consider the difference between short term and long term memory. How long does it take for memories to form?

Remember to type up your summary and post it as a comment to this blog entry.

Writing My Brain: Zahirah Hutton A night out with the ladies. Dinner was amazing as always. Maryland Night Life. Phillips Seafood. Hyatt Regency Baltimore, MD
A night out with the ladies. Dinner was amazing as always. Maryland Night Life. Phillips Seafood.
Hyatt Regency Baltimore, MD My amazing Fiancée and I. I love him to pieces. Half of My Deen!
My amazing Fiancée and I. I love him to pieces. Half of My Deen! Time to give thanks to my lord. Great Masjid ( Place of Worship)! Hidden Gem in the heart of NYC.
Time to give thanks to my lord. Great Masjid ( Place of Worship)! Hidden Gem in the heart of NYC.

My love for food is one of the many reasons I chose to dive into the hospitality field. It's my passion and can't wait to put my stamp on this industry.

My love for food is one of the many reasons I chose to dive into the hospitality field. It’s my passion and can’t wait to put my stamp on this industry.


Zahirah Hutton ENG 1101 D340 Project 1: Thinking in Writing

Some of the best thoughts and ideas come to me when I’m sitting in bed, the good bad and the ugly. Particularly this morning at 6:30am it was nothing but pure bliss. I got a call from my fiancée, normally I wouldn’t receive this early of a call but he forgot I didn’t have school on Fridays but it was cool I missed him anyway. Thoughts of my future with him seem to surround me more and more with each passing day. Every time we talk it just reminds me of how close I am to seeing him again. These thoughts seemingly make me a happier person and I don’t dwell on the negative anymore, now I’m not naïve but I just don’t seem to care anymore. If my thoughts don’t involve him I’m generally thinking about my spiritual capacity. At 12:30 pm it’s time to make prayer which is called Salatul- Dhuhr one of five mandatory prayers that we make as Muslims. I’m always trying to find out ways to better myself as a Muslim woman it makes worshiping my lord a little more of a challenge than others. With all the wars and Middle Eastern based movies going on it puts a bad taste in some people’s mouths about Islam. Generally I find myself having to defend the beauty of Islam as a whole because of a few individuals’ mistakes or wrong doings. So naturally I’m always trying to get stronger and maintain a solid spiritual base with myself and my Lord. These are easily two topics I think about often but I know I have room to think of other pressing things in my life. It’s not that they aren’t important it’s just that now currently they are becoming more important whereas the other where a consistent thought. As much as I like my thought process I could be thinking more about my future career path and where I want to be in the next three or four years. Not only educationally but also financially, potentially I would be starting a family and that’s not a cheap dream to have. I would like to at least be stable enough take care of myself and my husband but also a baby in the future. In the mist of college I would like to be working in a position that potentially catapults me into my dream career position. As soon as possible I would like to set some college and future goals for myself ones that I can complete in the next three to four years to come. One of the few things I can pay less attention to would be my phone, I’m always being told that I should stay off my phone whether I’m home, work, school or talking to friends. Maybe now that I think about it what’s in my phone isn’t that important I miss out on things because I’m so preoccupied. Learning to put the phone down when necessary shouldn’t be too hard but it’ll defiantly be a work in progress.


Zahirah Hutton

ENG 1101


Writing My Brain


Never did I think my everyday routines would be such a fascinating topic. Until you actually have to put them down on paper you don’t realize the path in which your brain goes throughout the day. Well in now being conscious of the things I think about during the day I realized there is indeed a pattern. If I was speaking to my present self from five years in the future I would defiantly have some great advice for myself. I would push myself to think about more important things as well as encourage myself not to think so much and have fun. I’m sure you’re probably interested to see what I was thinking about or maybe you’re not but I’m going to tell you anyway.

I remember that day when all I could think about was being happily married to my best friend and till this day I still feel that way. I was looking forward to the thrills and blissful mornings that come with marriage. In the mist of all of that I never thought about the long term to the extent that I had a road map for the future ahead with my husband. You can’t live in NYC and pay rent with love alone certain moves have to be made in order to live a comfortable lifestyle. Zahirah you really need to assess your life and take control of your future to put things into order and perspective. You can’t expect to marry someone and still live at home with Mom & Dad it’s not just you anymore. Nothing in life comes to you easily especially if it’s worth the fight trials & tribulations. I’ve always had my mom and dad backing me up and I still do now but it’s different because I’ll need to be that wife that can stand on her own and show the same strength I see in my mom every day. Zahirah I’m telling you from experience marriage is a beautiful thing but it’s also a lot of work. As long as you have people in your corner that love you you’ll be just fine.

Besides my love life I spiritual being needs to play a more active role in my life. Not to say that I’m not always conscience of it but I tend to do some things that conflict with what I should be doing. I remember February 9th 2015 at 12:30 it was time for my hourly prayer which is Salatul-Dhuhr which means prayer or homage in Arabic. It’s one of the many reminders to me that allow me to correct my wrongs and get me closer to my lord. I feel so much clarity after I perform my prayer, which is just one of five obligatory throughout the day but there’s plenty opportunity to perform more than five. As I get older I’m becoming more seriously involved in my beliefs and I’m finding that this time around I’m doing it for myself and not my parents. As a kid living in your parents household you tend to have no choice of what you want to believe in whether you agree or not. So in doing that I would just make prayer or read the Holy Quran because that’s what was required of me. Not really understanding what I was reading and the reason behind what I was doing. Knowing what I know now I wish I would have taken advantage of those times but it’s also my parents doing. I feel if I was sat down and explained in detail the beauty of Islam when I was younger then I would know so much and wouldn’t have to play catch up as much. For one the teachings are fine it’s the Arabic language that’s hard to grasp. So I’m here to tell myself I need to get on the ball and focus on getting myself right spiritually for myself. Now that I have someone to help me through this journey we can learn from each other and in turn I’ll be a stronger Zahirah and that’s all I can ever ask for.

Now that I’ve taken the step to college I really should be trying to get jobs in my line of work for the career I’ve chosen for myself. Since the age of sixteen I’ve only had jobs in retail and that’s cool and all for starting out when I was in high school but now that I’m an adult and I have a different level of priorities something has to give. Not only are these jobs not financially stable but they put me in no position to attain the position I wish to possess in the hospitality field. In saying I need to work harder to put myself in a better financial standing as well as secure my future. I’ve always been one that loved money I mean who doesn’t but even in middle school I would sell all kinds of things cell phone cases, phone charms as well as chargers. My dad used to work in a cellphone store and that gave me an opportunity to test my skills and from there that’s how this entrepreneur came to be. It’s not that I’m not trying it’s just that I have been highly distracted as of late. In the middle of planning a wedding having not seen my fiancée in 8 months to finally seeing him has me completely flustered but in a good way.

I think that the majority of my generation suffers from I.P.U (Intensive Phone Usage). I’m not as bad as some people I know but it has gotten to a point where I realized it can potentially become a big problem. Sometimes I tend to zone off and what’s in my phone is more entertaining then what’s being said in front of me. It wasn’t until my fiancée mentioned to me that I was constantly on my phone. We’ve made a rule that neither one of us will use our phones around each other which I had no problem doing it’s just that I didn’t know it’s gotten to that point. Super glad it was brought to my attention because I wouldn’t want to miss out the important things in my life whether that be personal or business wise. I’m finding a balance between staying current while still being cultured which is pretty cool.


Reading: Jonathan Gottschall’s The Storytelling Animal, Night Story

During the first ten minutes of class, write a summary of Jonathan Gottschall’s The Storytelling Animal, Night Story chapter in your notebooks. These are some questions to help you with your summary: What does Gottschall mean by “night story?” What is the significance of Jouvet’s cats? What kinds of dreams do you remember most vividly? Do you remember your dreams from last night?

Remember to type up your summary and post it to OpenLab as a comment to this blog post before our next meeting.

Writing My Brain by Alexys S. Harden


In this project the objective was to identify the types of daily thinking I do that contributes to my success as a student. I took the time to record my thoughts and imagine myself five years from now based on my goals. The following will be a letter of observations from my 2020 self to my current 2015 self.

Thinking in Writing

Looking at my list of thoughts I find that I think a lot about being on time and managing my time from the morning to afternoon and less frequently in the afternoon. My first priority is waking up on time even if I’m tired; in order to get to a bus and train on time to be in my classes in the morning with extra time to possibly get breakfast and coffee. From the time I wake up to the time I exit the train at Jay Street a common thought is sleep and coffee. From there I find myself making a “to do” list on my iPad or phone so that I can prioritize the rest of my day or next couple of days. Lastly after my classes are done I rush to work in order to clock in on time. Another common thought that stood out was managing my school work for the night because I’m a tad bit of a procrastinator when I have a heavy workload and long work day. Besides those main patterns my mind focuses on taking in information at school and making ways to remember it.
If I had the option of focusing on something more is would definitely be schoolwork. When I’m in class I no doubt take on full attention to my work but once I leave my mind rushes off to the next part of the day which most in most cases is my job. I think if I started to focus on school more often then I wouldn’t be so stressed before class due dates.

Thinking Visually


This picture represents my daily thoughts about work. I think about being on time/early. While at work I at Teavana I constantly think of the tasks that need to be taken care of and what’s the best way to go about them.


The train station closest to my school. This represents my thoughts because every morning my objective is to get this stop on time for class.



Food is so important in my life yet I rarely eat any good meals. I realized that in my thoughts so here’s a slightly healthy, slightly fattening meal.



My Brain Rules and Storytelling Animal books are representation of the things I would like to focus on more. I noticed that I often wait until the last minute to put effort into my school work.



From the time I wake up to the time I get to school my thoughts are on getting a soy toffee nut latte and making it to class on time. I feel like I need coffee to make it through the day.



Whether it’s on my phone or in my planner I’m always trying to manage my time so that I don’t forget things. This photo of my planner represents managing my time better.



Thinking Reflectively

Today I’m an advertising account manager at an advertising agency I interned at about 6 years ago. I absolutely love my job! Life is pretty great for the most part. I just got engaged and we have started planning the wedding. Seven years later and we’re still together. Anyhow, after I graduated from LIM I had a contact from a place I interned at my senior year of high school, and she still happened to remember me and offered to set up an interview. If I had the opportunity to go back change some things 5 years ago back in college I definitely would have. Although everything is great now I really wish I would’ve focused on school way harder, less on pleasing my family and more on loving them as well as and working on being less lazy all around.

See, during my freshman year of college I was kind of slacking off all around. In my first semester I was doing great, all of my time was focused on school and school work. But my second semester was something completely different. I landed a job at a tea shop that began to take up a lot of my time. I would go to school and work then not get home until 11pm or even midnight some days. I found myself with barely any time to do my work, study or rest. I recall thinking “I need to focus on school” because I really wanted to succeed in order to gain the life I imagined myself having.  But even when I did try harder, I kept telling myself I could do better with test and the effort I put into my work at school. I still don’t know why I was so tough on myself until this day. I wasn’t a horrible student but I just felt so much pressure to be successful from everyone around me including my family to my current fiancé.

It’s interesting to look back and realize that I was motivated by my family to be so great in school. The idea of making them proud was always in the back of my mind pushing me forward, but I didn’t actually spend much time with them. My mom and I were, and still are very close which will hopefully never change. But as far as half siblings, aunts, uncles and cousins that’s make up my huge family tree, I never built that big relationship with. I lived 3,000 miles away from all of my family and it was so hard to keep close contact unless it was through watching every move on social media. We never kept close ties and I felt I was just the family member everyone would call or text when they wanted to take a flight out to “The Big Apple”. So somehow I felt that if I could “win” in life that I would be able to offer them more. It took 18 years for me to realize that I had to live my life for me in order to gain real approval. Once I started setting personal goals and doing the things I believed would map out my future like working for all the things I wanted, going to school and leaving laziness in the past I was so much happier. My family even began to notice it and before I knew it, they were proud of me.  Since then I realized that making everyone else happy shouldn’t be my focus.

On the other hand though, I wish that family was the main part of my growing up. I put so much thought into satisfying my family that I wasn’t really loving them. Sure all family members yell “love you” over the phone or before you head to the airport on a 6 hour flight back to New York. But I found myself questioning if they meant it. I had such a large family and I was the outcast. If I could turn back the years I would have picked up the phone and called more often or saved money to visit home more frequently. Joyce Brothers says that “When you look back at your life, the greatness happiness are family happiness”. Yet when I looked back at mine they weren’t.

During my family centric to self centric transition I realized that I was extremely lazy. I found myself not doing much to benefit myself at all. When I did homework, it was the bare minimum and it was the same with work at my job. When I first got hired at the tea shop I was so motivated and as time went on I slacked off and didn’t give as much genuine attention to it. I was also lazy at home. My mom would always get on me about chores. Especially in my freshman year of college when I barely spent any time in the house. “Why didn’t you do the dishes?!”, “Your room looks a HOT mess Symone.”

My mother really helped me see that I needed a turning point in my college career if I wanted success. So slow but surely I tried to change. In high school, my History teacher taught me that crossing out things on a list made you feel happier when you completed the task. I never paid him any mind until my first time completing a whole list of tasks. Sitting in class knowing I was on top of my work felt great! I would daily write out lists for myself of tasks that I needed to complete for school arranged in order of class and importance. Later, I found myself doing this at work. I created the same type of list for myself during my last hours on my shift in order to close the store soon became one of the top sellers and got home quickly to sleep. Sleep then became a part of my prioritizing.

In my Introduction to English class during the spring semester of my freshman year I read John Medina’s “Brain Rules”. The author explained that the more sleep you get the better your brain can function effectively. Each night I would aim to get at least 8 hours of sleep. For the most part I was successful except for those times I slipped into the trap of procrastination and stayed awake until 1 and 2 in the morning.

All of these things have made me into the successful woman that I am today. Although I would have changed some things I don’t regret much at all. My suggestion to you is to stay focused. Take these words and reflections to heart and make us better!



Writing My Brain by Luis Dela Cruz




As I woke up this morning I was thinking to my self HOW THE HECK AM I GOING TO FINISH THIS PROJECT ON TIME!!!. While I was going crazy my mom gave me a brilliant idea she said “instead of doing your work here and getting to class late, why don’t just finish over their” that’s when it hit me, I can use city tech computer lab to finish my work and I wouldn’t be late for my classes, Thanks Mom.

As I was writing to my self from a point of few of 5 years into the future, my imagination kick in and all these thoughts on how I want my life to be and how it could actually be just came out of my head. I actually put my self in a position where my life isn’t where Its spouse to be and my goals where not achieve early or at all because I slacked in the present. This show that are mind can actually predict are own future in a way and we have the chance to actually make a few adjustment to it if you see your self doing something you don’t want to do or just making sure you make your life what you want it to be and the only way to do that is to plan for your future Right Now.


Thinking in writing:

Today has tough me that the mind is a strange but incredible thing to have with us every day that you wake up, knowing that the first thing that pops into your head is a thought. And the thought can be anything, about a dream you had, a bad night you remember, could just even be thinking about your future and by future I’m saying thinking what your going to do today, or in other words predicting  the steps your going to make on your way to the train and at school, and also homework you had to do but for got and went crazy trying to find a way to complete it on time, these where just some thoughts that pop into my head this morning from 7am-11am, and i just thought of a name to call those thoughts “my morning thoughts”. And as the time passes by at my house once i got out class, from 2pm-7pm my “Afternoon thoughts” kick in, and since i was not scheduled to work today, i thought to my self let me hit up my friends to hang out/ Chill, and i as i walk toward my friends home, i was thinking to my self, I’m going to get ode stoned today and knowing that i just recently learned a little bit about ”Neuromyths” And finding out that drugs don’t make a hole in your brain, and realizing its chemical messes around with are brains. I also have learned and notice that drugs like pot can make you more relax and some very attentive to things that catches their interest and of course expands the minds way of thinking, which leads to my “Night time thoughts”. This is where my buzz kicks in and as i sit alone and see something that catches my interest, like the news, and these wars that can happen any minute with North korea, IS and other world problems and all of that just melts in my heads so it fuses with my mind and make me think, why is the world like this? when it can easily be change, Will their ever be change? How can we create/start change? the answer to it is so easy but yet so complicated for people to understand, because greed and ignorance exist in are world so while we still have that their will never be the answer which is peace. Also so when I’m trying to get some sleep probably from 12am-1am in my home i ask my self one deep question a day and yesterday question was “Why are we so focus on creating and starting wars, when we have a world getting smaller and smaller by the years and are human population is increasing? or who know it can even decrease, but at the end, if us as human matter and want to expand are mind and survive for new generation to come, i think to my self if we have been to the moon why aren’t we using it for are own advantage and create away to live in the moon, create some type of oxygen bases “i don’t know” and by the time are world is to crowded we have other homes in space, and step by step we can reach other planet, create live out their. Are mind is limitless and i am 100% that anything that sounds crazy or impossible, is possible. you just need a mind that wont stop imagining or creating random thoughts in your head, and makes you thing of something that can change the world one day. To be honest i think a lot about life and the situation I’m in and how can i change that, a pattern that i notice every time i think, its that i try to think in to the future to much and how it going to be or what i’m going to be doing and even what are we to expect when we die, question that just pop into my head randomly. i also notice i don’t think about my job as as much as i should its like i blank it out and just go to work and come back like i never left but know i went to work , something i should probably pay more attention to. and these are my Day Of Thoughts.


Thinking visually:
Every time I get home I think about my job and the days I work, somedays i work a few hours other days I work more. I also think to my self that I need more hours so I can get more money and buy my school supplies because the little hours I get isn’t enough because I have to pay rent.
Sometimes I sit at home and think to myself “what in the hell am I doing with my life”, sure I work and I got school but sometimes I feel like I need to do something greater in life something bigger, I think to my self I need to leave New York and live life but then I see my family and tell my self they need me.
She is the reason why I try my best to wake up and do what I got to do, a though that comes to my head everyday is seeing my niece face and smiling at me and it gives me hope so thanks to her my mind stays positive and think of all the opportunities life has to offer.
One of most thoughts that comes to my head especially when I get out of class and head home is food, and I think about what am I going to eat or make and today I thought of making brown rice with grill chicken for me and my family since my mom get out of work late I get to cook. So what am I going to cook is a thought that process threw my head everyday.
This is one of my main objective, and I need to stop slacking around and buy my books for all my classes as soon as possible, this is something that I really need to focus on and think about 100% and make sure I get on track with school.
This is also something I been meaning to focus on but work and school don’t let me. So I think to myself “damn I need to make a schedule for my health”. I always think about my health especially since I stop smoking I would really like to build up my strength.

Thinking reflectively:

 Dear Luis de la Cruz
    First of all congratulations on becoming a united state citizen on March, 06, 2015 you have come along way but you finally accomplished one of your goals, but what is good having a passport to travel the world if you still stuck in New York. To make it more clear to you, my name is Luis de la Cruz and I am you writing to you from the year 2020, 5 years has past and we graduated from city tech, but we still don’t live the life we wanted to live. I write to you to make you realize that the things we think about the least are what we should be focusing on the most to be successful as soon as you graduate. For once start going to sleep early so you can wake up well rested and don’t need to fall asleep in class. Also try to pay more mind to your classes, learned how to manage your money because we both know you can’t have money in your pockets, and last but not least always put your dreams ahead of everything.

    Come on man by this time you should already know that one of the most important things you have to do during your college years is sleep. Sleep enough hours to help you keep active and understand the class lessons. Right now in the 2020, sleep is something I Barely get because I have to work more hours to get the money I want instead of working less hours for the same amount of money. Sleeping a good amount of hours is one of the task I want you to understand and accomplish. Remember the book John Medinas brain rules and the chapter about sleep, well of course you do you are still reading it right, right!, well anyways I want you to read the chapter all over again and really understand it, you know that lack of sleep can cause less use of the brain and you’ll end up sleeping in a class again. I am going to give you some steps on how to improve your sleeping schedule. First try to spend less time on unnecessary things and more time on the important ones, like homework but you’ll read about that later on during this letter. Also try to label what to do daily always focus on the important tasks first then, if you have time on the least important. Last but not least put an alarm not to wake you up but to tell you to go to sleep and of course one to wake you up. These guidelines are just some of the future secrets that I’m sharing with you so you, I mean us can have a better tomorrow.

            You know something I realized about us we can never have money around because one of our major problem is handling money and we are extremely bad when comes to it.  Even as I am writing to you I keep spending money and I definitely want you to change that. Money is a must have in your pocket, wallets or credit card it’s a must need in case of emergency and you know what type of emergency I’m talking about. Listen Luis I want you, no need you to start saving money go cancel your chase account because that bank company is not working out for you, it is also taking your money. Get an Apple back out they have better benefits than chase like helping with collage. Once you make an account get direct deposit from your job, every time you get paid save at least $50 in your bank account and keep on saving 50 every time your job pays you. That will help you get books you need for your classes and trust me I know you really need them. It will also benefit you on transportation to go to class on time which your good amount of sleep.  Saving up money is also a task I want you to learn it can’t really help you in the future we’ll help us, And it will guarantee you a better understanding of your classes once you get the books. Listen Luis try to really follow my advice on saving up your money and I guarantee you it will help you achieve your goals.

              I understand you’re not 100% prepare for your college at this point, come on man you can’t be given late work to your class is going to leave you with a whole stack of homework or other type of work that you’re just going to end up not doing, Just imagine having so much work that it won’t let you have a life. So my tip to you is always do your work on time make sure your teachers receive it because I know you want to pass all your classes right? And some ways for you to make sure that your work are completed on time are, as soon as you get the work make sure its your first priority, ignore your friends telling you or inviting you to hang out if you haven’t done any work, and last if you have important matters to attend make sure you set a schedule to do your work so you won’t lose track of what’s needed to be done.

               Now let’s talk about your dreams your goals your success all of that that can be achieved if you just put your head into it. Look you have gone so far and thanks to your parents and are Ambition to move forward in life you have face difficult challenges and even though you don’t win them all they all lead you to be the person you are today and it will continue to lead you to become a Professional in whatever you set your mind to. You have always had high hope for your future And all you could do was dream about it but now you have the chance to reach for it and become what you always wanted to be, but it isn’t free yes is possible but only if you really are willing to make it possible. Because you have the determination all you need is the results. Look put your head high and your dreams first and doing so will lead you to achieve the three task I have written to you on this letter.

             As I finish writing this letter to you I really want you to pay real close attention, Luis you have the ability to be anybody you want in this world but again you’re going to have to work for it on your own. I know the journey is difficult but complete these tasks I have giving you and you’ll see that all that hard work and dedication paid off And Will have the life we Knew wanted to have, I want you to even re-read this in five years you’ll see how far you have gone in life. Always keep it positive mind and a positive attitude, save enough money that can be helpful for school and again put your work ahead of everything try to complete it first. Hope you take my advice and create a better future for Then the one I’m living right now.


                                            Luis A. Dela Cruz


Midterm Writing Exercise

Using your own notebook paper, please write about your experiences in our ENG 1101 class so far this semester and your past experiences in other English classes. Your response should be at least one page long, but you are free to write more.

Specifically, what kinds of work are you doing in our class?

What are you getting out of our class so far?

As you’ve seen the kinds of work that we’ve done so far, what are your goals in our class?

In your past English classes, have you written a research paper before?

Have you checked out a library book before?

How did you choose your current major or the degree that you want to pursue? Did you learn about it by word of mouth? Do you know someone in that career? Did you read anything about it—on a website, magazine, newspaper, book—if so, which ones?