Educational Narrative

Jaqai Cherry                                                                              ENG 1101 O305



                                                 “Every Class has a Purpose”


At the beginning of my educational journey, the teachers taught me the basics of learning how to write, read and do basic math equations. As the years go on and I begin to go to middle school and high school I’ve experienced different things along the way. These experiences have taught me a lesson on how every class has a purpose to learn a new skill.


The first experience was during Middle school, specifically during the 6th grade where I attended a new school and didn’t know anybody. I entered the school and walked towards the auditorium where the principal greeted us and started to explain how this year was going to be the “Best Year” for us. After the assembly we headed towards our first class which was homeroom the “Main Class”, the teacher greeted herself and proceeded to explain the schedule that was given at the front desk when we entered the school, it seemed pretty normal at first there was English, Math, Writing, Science, History and Korean class which personally caught my eye. This class stood out because it was a change of pace learning something new rather than the usual subjects taught every year. When I walked into the classroom it was like walking into a new world, there were tons of different Korean artifacts all around the classroom such as lights, some writing, Korean letters, and little Korean-style toys on her desk.


We sat down in our seats and the teacher greeted us with a smile saying “hello everyone” in Korean. At first, I was confused about what she was saying because during that time trying to learn Korean was like asking a baby to build a time machine, but after she explained what she was doing my eyes started to light up with joy and it made me more interested in learning more about the culture and language. A few weeks went by and it was time for us to try and speak the language ourselves. She wanted us to say the sentence “ Hello this is my name and today is going to be great”, when she asked me to try and say it, it sounded like gibberish and nonsense coming out of my mouth. After 45 minutes passed the bell started to ring and class ended so walking out of that class made me feel kind of upset because I couldn’t speak the Korean Language properly, but it made me look forward to learning more for the rest of the school year so I can learn how to speak the language more fluently. Learning Korean changed my perspective of school entirely. At first, I thought we were going to learn just the advanced versions of ELA, Math, Science, and History, but after taking the Korean class it made me more interested in learning more about different cultures and how the languages came to be what they are now.


 This experience is similar to the article “Mother Tongue” by Amy Tan. In this article, Amy’s mother wasn’t fluent when speaking English so it was considered “broken” to other people who were talking to her. This is similar to my case during middle school since I struggled with learning how to speak Korean making it sound perfectly fine to me but whenever I tried speaking Korean to the teacher it would be considered “broken” since she had a hard time understanding what I was saying to her.

  Another experience was not too long ago about two years from now in my Junior year of High school. My friends and I decided to go hang out at a restaurant called Popeyes and discuss our plans for the future, this was taking place during the Fall on the first day of school.


After listening to the teachers introduce themselves and receive our schedule, we all decided to meet up around the school entrance and go to Popeyes which is a restaurant that sells chicken, fries, shrimp, and mashed potatoes. The weather felt perfect, with the sun setting, the humid and breezy winds, and the leaves finally starting to change color it was like an instant switch between Summer and Fall. Since Popeyes wasn’t that far from our school it only took us about 7 minutes to get from point A to point B. 


We all entered at the same time and when I looked around the place it wasn’t full but wasn’t empty either, just a couple of people here and there sitting down either chatting or getting work done. We sat down at the usual table on the right side near the soda machine right before you walked in the restaurant and took our book bags off before placing our order of the “Family Pack” which contains 8pc chicken, Fries, Mashed Potatoes, and 4 drinks for about $18. As we sat down eating our food we began talking about our opinions on how this year is going to play out as well as our futures after high school. We all thought that this school year was going to be amazing since nothing changed from sophomore year to Junior year with everyone being in the same class, as well as us having the same teachers from last year but the conversation, started to shift when my friend asked about our plans after high school.


Some of my friends answered quickly “I was planning to become a computer scientist”, “I want to do business” and I answered by saying “I want to become a Computer Engineer” since the thought of creating Computers, phones, and gaming consoles such as PC’s was amazing. We continued talking about our futures and after about 5 minutes of talking one of my friends concluded that some of the classes we were taking didn’t help with trying to achieve what we want to be in life. After a few seconds, he explained saying “Take Art class for example, if you want to be an artist you don’t need to learn algebra to know how to draw shapes”. This makes sense but I had a different perspective of this response so I replied with “Yea you might be right, but I think the reason why they’re doing this is that they know not everyone wants to do the same thing for their career, but for the percentage that wants to become say an artist, this class would be very important to them. Cooking would be a great example, you don’t need to know the Pythagorean Theorem to learn how to cook but there are certain things such as measurements, time, and the amount of heat you need to know if you want to be efficient in cooking”. It’s just another important skill to have so when something happens you know how to deal with it.


The sun started to go down and curiously I looked at my phone and saw that it’s 5 pm. We all grabbed our bags and decided that it was time to go home since it was getting pretty late. While waiting for the train I started to think about college since it wouldn’t be that long before graduation would be here, and it made me realize something huge. It made me realize that going to college is an option, not a requirement. For example, you wanted to become a photographer. Some apps and videos help you learn more about editing pictures, and with a little time and practice, you can become a pro easily so college isn’t necessarily needed. But say if you want to be a chef or an artist, specific schools such as art and culinary schools can help you become better at pursuing your career, but you still have the option whether you decide to go or not, making college more of an option. This conversation was another reason why my view of school and the educational system has changed. We have been educated and taught all this time for school to lead us to go to college, but after talking with my friends and doing some thinking on the train it made me realize that I can still create a good future for myself without having to go to college even though in the end it didn’t change my decision on going to college, but it was still something important to know.


` In conclusion, both these experiences were mostly the main reasons why my view of the educational system and school has changed. These experiences helped me realize that adding new classes are discrete ways that the school does to try and get you more interested in trying new things and that college is there to maximize your knowledge based on what you want to pursue in life, but you don’t have to go if you feel like it’s not needed.

Reviewer’s Memo:


  1. The reason why I wrote this “Shitty Draft” was to show my experiences on how learning Korean and Talking about my future with friends changed my perspective of school and the educational system. I hope that this “Shitty Draft” will inspire people to learn that every class can be an unlearned skill that may be useful in the future.


  1. I feel like this project will help us learn how to write efficiently with almost no mistakes in the future, but the only problem for me specifically is learning how to start the writing because I deeply think about how I’m going to hook the reader into the story and how I can keep them interested.


  1. The questions for the reader(s): Is there anything I can change to make this writing better? And when I added the comparison between “Mother Tongue” and My Korean experience should I have added more detail or explained it more accurately? 


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