Professor S. Schmerler
Eng. 1121 Sec. 402
My English 1121 Journey
Table of Contents:
Unit 1 Journey:
- Inner/ Outer Dialogue
- My reflection of Unit 1
Unit 2 Journey:
- Diary Excerpts
- Diary of a Wimpy Kid Reflection
- Unit 2 Reflection
- John Cage’s 4:33
Unit 3 Journey:
- Learning from Each Other: Affinity, and Inquiry
- Skill investigation of others and joint learning
Unit 1 Journey
So, I am here on the train attempting to write in transit for this inner/ outer dialogue assignment. Luckily, I got a seat on the train and the car fairly crowded usually there would be a wave of passengers crowding the platform and rushing into the train. Across from where I was seated was this beige colored guy and his lady. The reason I thought it was his lady is because of how tightly he was tucked next to her on the car seats, he also used his butt to push against her indicating that she should slide over to the end of the seat. “Ping Pong” the train doors close and it’s time to begin my long journey home to Jamaica Queens. For a moment I could tell he felt a little awkward because of a language barrier, from what it seems some of the lady’s family members were seated next to me and they were all engaged in heavy conversation. I tried to pick out a few words from what I heard and concluded that they were speaking Italian. From his body language, showing an uninterested desire to engage and a facial expression showing confusion I could tell he wasn’t familiar with the language. She would occasionally stop to speak with him, and they would converse in English, I think she knew he felt awkward and wanted to help him feel some sort of inclusion.
Again, as I wait patiently in the cold terminal for the arrival of the “F” train, I prepare my mind for this long journey ahead. After waiting for ten minutes the train finally arrives and of course, the car in crowded this has started to become a normality. I stood in the car awaiting my chance to get a seat at one of the next stops, in this instance I took some time to observe my surroundings anticipating that when I got a seat i will have some content to write about. From what I observed most of the passengers were coupled up, “PING PONG” the car doors shut and off we go chugging down the tracks. Everyone is being so affectionate tonight; it must be the cold weather or the fact that Valentine’s Day is swiftly approaching. Who knows what it is, but PDA (Public Display of Affection) seems to be the thing tonight. As the train approaches the 34th and Herald Square terminal, majority of the passengers prepare to depart the car. This must have been god answering my prayers because I was tired as hell and I did not want to stand for the remainder of my journey home. It had already been twenty minutes and I still had about an hour left on the train before my stop. I finally sat down and out came my notebook and pen, as I observe the passengers leaving the train and the ones coming onto the train it seems to be a fair trade, meaning the same number of passengers entered the train as the amount that departed. I observed some Mexican guys covered in concrete dust; they must have been on a construction site. They seemed to be familiar with each other and thus a conversation sparked, probably they all work on the same site. From the little knowledge in had in Spanish I tried to decipher their conversation, lets seem what I picked up from watching all these episodes of Narcos. Unfortunately, the only this I could translate was “cervasa” which means beer. I guess after a hard day of work a beer would be a great way to end the day.
One of my major struggles in English was that my wording was very simple. I would use words that are more general in meaning than words that would be more specifically catered to what I was demonstrating in my writing. A word like “show” which has a very broad and general meaning can be view in many different contexts according to the reader. So, I started to use words like “Depict” and “Demonstrate” which have more specific meanings and will allow the reader to properly visualize the exact purpose of the reading. This also show ones understanding of vocabulary and the meaning of words that can give a sentence direct meaning. I also struggled with repetition of pronouns and an overuse of conjunctions, often completing paragraphs with numerous run-on sentences which could be fixed by proper punctuation. My ideas were not properly organized so often my paragraphs lacked coherency and appear to be jumping back and forth.
After being guided by my professors and receiving feedback for compositions, my writing has enhanced immensely. I have observed a drastic change in my writing, and I feel more confident to compose an essay or research paper. Knowing that I have a better understanding of sentence structure, punctuation, subject/verb agreement and articles creates a feeling of fulfillment. There have been many successes, I am now more fluent in writing compositions, my wording and sentence structure are more coherent with my ideas and paragraph organization. The compositions sound more sophisticated which allows my readers to visualize exactly what I am saying without misconstruing ideas. I have always loved writing compositions, and for a while it became less enjoyable because it felt like more of a task. I have found renewed love for writing and I enjoy picking up a pen and paper or just typing on the computer. Words flow like they never have before and ideas are more transparent.
I have found a new love for English because of how my professors have innovated the way they communicate and interact with students. My English professor last semester for Eng. 1101, Professor Cipriani used games like “Kahoots” and programs like “Toolwire” to help with vocabulary building, use of articles, subject/verb agreement and punctuation. These games made class more exciting and enjoyable, in turn, I was able to retain the information better and also participate more in class. It was always great to get feedback about completed essays, to see what areas one can improve on. She also implemented sessions where students would analyze each other’s work, give their personal feedback and also produce a recommended grade based on their personal understanding in accordance to the grading rubric. My English 1121 class is somewhat similar. Professor Schmerler is a very engaging and animated person. She displaces information with words and movements, almost painting a graphic picture of exactly what she is saying. Some assignments in Professor Schmerler’s class are quite similar to that of Professor Cipriani. In both classes I had to write an introductory essay and also log events in a weekly journal. The things that differ though is that Professor Schmerler created an assignment that allows one to write outside of their comfort zone. It was called “Inner/Outer dialogue”, and I was now writing about my daily experiences while in transit to whatever destination I was headed. I started to observe my surroundings a lot more and started to notice new things about the people and places I travel to on a daily basis. This type of assignment was very fascinating to me because of how open my eyes were to my surroundings and also because we had to share each other’s experiences aloud in class. It was interesting to see how much each student’s time in transit was almost similar and it was fascinating to hear about everyone’s experiences.
I think I have learned how to articulate my sentences more, so that there is more coherency and my paragraphs have a better flow. I have gotten a little better with punctuation because at first, I had a lot of run-on sentences. Overall, I have become a better writer and I own that to the dedication of my professors to help students learn. I was surprised when professor Schmerler asked us to write while in transit, it was a new experience for me, and it got out of my comfort zone of just writing in class or writing at home. I discovered that most of the readings that we have gotten narratives and are very similar to the ‘Inner/Outer’ dialogue assignment because the author is basically talking about their own experiences. I think they help in how we format and word our own compositions.
Unit 2 Journey
Extended Diary Excerpt
I just woke up and I’m getting prepared for my math class. We are having our third exam today and I feel super confident that I can get a great score. I went to the bathroom to brush my teeth, then wash my face and log in to take this exam.
I am about to start my math exam. I had to download a PDF and then write out the solutions on paper so that I can demonstrate how I came up with the solution.
After two intense hours of brain racking mathematics, I am finally finished with my math exam. I was supposed to upload the documents to blackboard, but that task seemed quite difficult, so instead, I scanned all the documents and emailed them to my math professor.
Now it is time for my microbiology class, I a bit excited every time class is in session because I learn so much about the microscopic wonders of the world. Who would have thought that learning about bacteria and fungi would be so exciting? My next favorite thing about the class is that we get to conduct experiments. But since the outbreak of the coronavirus there will be no more trips to the lab.
I think people are overestimating the severity of the virus. Some may even have the virus and not know because it presents itself like the common cold. Some may even mistake symptoms of the common cold for developing the COVID-19 virus. It’s gotten so crazy that schools are closing, and classes are being canceled. My mother being the clean freak that she is has gotten worst and I can’t even walk into my house without being grilled about washing my hands. I’m always aware of my surroundings and I try to be as clean as possible. I wash and sanitize my hand so many times I might be starting to lose melanin. I think people should really go out and seek proper information about the virus and how it is transmitted, they should also gain knowledge about the virus’s effect when it is contracted. If more people get the right information, I think less people would be in a panic about what’s actually happening.
It seems the country has gone in a deeper stage of hysteria due to the rise in coronavirus cases. I witness first-hand how people are reacting to the mandatory self-quarantine. Being able to survive being inside for days, maybe weeks or months seem to be the biggest cause of ruction in the nation. I see how people who know the right information react versus persons who react to everything that is said or seen in media, whether it is social media or other mediums used to broadcast information. I work in a supermarket, actually Fairway Market in the Littleneck area and for the past three days work has been extremely overwhelming. I have been working longer shifts just to help contain the huge amount of traffic in the supermarket. I have seen people being extremely inconsiderate to the fact that they are not the only ones dealing with this pandemic. The effects are nationwide and the fact people from every class need to have supplies in their home in case there is a nationwide lockdown should be considered by everyone when grocery shopping. There has been so much excessive buying that the shelves cannot stay stocked and water is becoming a scarce as gold. I feel like people should be more considerate to the fact that other people are in the same situation and also need to get supplies for their families and them.
John Cage’s “4:33”
Listening to John Cage’s composition of ‘4:33” was a very interesting experience. When professor Schmerler explained that the piece was going to be silent I did not really know what exactly to expect. I found the composition to be very hilarious but maybe that was because we were watching a video of the composition and could see the movement and antics of the composer. The composer sat, looked at the music sheet and opened the up the piano, it looked like he about to attempt to play the piano, then, he just shut the lid and sat in silence. A feeling of confusion overtook me and then a feeling laughter because of the antics he displayed. I could not help but think the that the composition had a deeper meaning. In the absence of sound is there really music? Is this a metaphor that can be applied to other things in life? These are some of the thoughts that surfaced in my mind as I gazed upon the screen. If a person does not display a certain talent or skill does it mean that they do not possess the skill or is it that they have not unlocked that potential yet? Also, I thought the metaphorical sense could apply to being different in accordance to different genres of writing or music. Is one genre superior to others? If a person’s style of writing or composing is different, does that make them less talented? My mind was boggled with these thoughts as sat there listening to 4:33.
Kebeon’s Reflection on Diary of a Wimpy Kid
The diary that I chose to read was “Diary of a Wimpy Kid.” This book is a classic and reading it reminded me of the old days when I used to watch the cartoon series on the television. Reading Greg’s story reminds me of things I used to see as a child going up and experiences one could never forget. Things like having that goofy friend or trying your hardest to be the cool kid and even things like awkward moments with female species. It was hilarious revisiting those moments and being able to relate to Greg’s experience.
I really enjoyed reading this book. I found that the format and font made it easy to read because of how big the words were and how they were spaced on the pages. It was also written as if they were real diary inserts, which made it easy to follow Greg’s life on a daily basis. the illustrations were a plus for me because it helps one’s imagination to depicts a clear picture of the events that took place in each diary insert. Reading the diary made me feel as if I was back in middle school all over again, dealing with bullies, doing pranks and annoying older brothers.
“The Diary of a Wimpy Kid” made me reflect on my past and realize how far I have come, and I am grateful for all the progress that I have made over the years. It inspires me to press on in journey through life and continue to strive to become the individual that I am supposed to be.
Unit 2 Reflection
Unit two was just as enjoyable as unit one for me, I like that we as students get to express our creativity in writing while allowing others to witness our dad to day trials. It has been a difficult journey since the outbreak of the coronavirus and distance learning to me has not been the most ideal way of learning for myself. I really like being in classroom setting, surrounded by my peers and interacting with them and my professor. This new way of learning is very foreign to me, but my professor has created ways for us to stay in touch through all this distance. I must say that my writing has improved over these two units. Being able to paint a vivid picture in someone’s mind of what you have seen by interpreting sounds and adding time and location are certain aspects that help to nurture my writing skills. I am excited to see what wonders the new unit will bring to my writing experience.
Unit 3 Journey
UNIT III – Learning from Each Other: Affinity, and Inquiry
SECTION 1: YOUR SKILL/INTEREST DURING CONFINEMENT/ WITH SOURCES
Welcome to Kebeon’s Skill Document
MY SKILLS/ACTIVITIES ARE…
- Playing Soccer
- Video Games
1.Here You will tell us a little bit about WHAT YOU ALREADY KNEW BEFORE the confinement/what your experience has been with this skill/activity.
Before confinement I really enjoyed things like taking the train to class, while trying to write diary entries. I also liked the fact of being in class and interacting with my classmates and my professor. She is a very humorous person in her own way. Some of the things I would do in the spare time I had between classes and working was playing soccer and video games; FIFA being my favorite and probably the only one I play. But more or less playing soccer is something I love doing. I have a genuine passion for the sport and a love for the competition and rivalry between each player. It’s a very physical sport that requires strength, skill, lots of concentration and a lot of athleticism. I would usually play in games on five versus five or ten versus ten. It is a sport that requires a lot of coordination between vision and movement and sometimes a little physicality between players.
- Here You will tell us SOMETHING NEW you learned about it during this confinement period. If you haven’t learned anything new, then go out now and find out something(s) that you didn’t know about it before!
One thing that I learned is that there cannot be any soccer without socializing; people need to come together to play the sport. Not being able to go out to the park for a quick game or just to socialize and have a sense of brotherhood. Another thing I have learned is that we as a people can still come together to socialize through other mediums. I have seen parties, graduations and other events done virtually and that demonstrates to me how innovative we can be as human beings and adapt to different situations. We have changed the way we entertain with live streaming on different social media platforms.
- Here You Will Give credit to THE SOURCE(s) of this new information and tell us bit more about this/these sources and why you like them. Show us where we can go to find them.
This video serves as a source to give some insight on the skills, physicality, strength and determination it takes to be a soccer player. It is also displayed by the team I have been a fan of since my boyhood days:
A little insight into the world of Soccer
4: Context/Brief explanation to explain your skill/interest*
Playing soccer is like any other sport, it takes physical attributes, mental toughness, hard work and determination. These things separate good players from great players. You should also be able to enjoy every moment you step on a soccer field to play a match, whether it may be with friends or some official games. It is also a great way to stay fit due to the constant sprinting back and forth. I have been fascinated by this sport since I was young boy and the passion for the sport never dies. I get filled with excitement every time I get to lace up my cleats and step onto a soccer field.
SECTION 2: Inquiry — YOUR INVESTIGATION OF OTHERS’ SKILLS AND WHAT YOU LEARNED TOGETHER
After you communicate* with your partner, this is what you will both tell us in your shared PAIR document:
How ‘s it going Farley? It seems we have been paired to do this assignment and I am really looking forward to sharing my insight on soccer and hearing about your love for baseball.
1.What you have in common — where you meet on common ground on a deeper level, as well
K: From a short glance of what you have written I realize that we are both sportsmen who are passionate about our craft and have a genuine love for sports.
F: Yes, we have much in common as sportsmen as we know about our craft and know what takes to excel at the sport.
K: I realize you started playing at a young age, I used to play soccer as a pass time also when I was a kid. My time would entail running around aimlessly kicking the ball, I had no sense of what exactly to do also there was no structure to my game. As I got older and continued to play, I joined a soccer academy where I was able to nurture my raw talent and play the sport in a more structured way. By learning all the rules that affect the flow of play. I also played competitively in high school winning two championships and also playing in the first and premier divisions of my country’s national league.
???? ask questions of each other….
K:So tell me what made you gain interest in baseball? What spark or significant moment you had that made you develop the love you have for the sport?
F: I gained interest from my mom when she suggested that I join an outside baseball league for the summer. I never did play in the league, but I started watching pro baseball more and more, I didn’t actually start playing until freshman year of high school. Similar to you, I didn’t know much about baseball and mostly had raw talent. It wasn’t as until I got older that I started to gain more skill and knowledge about the game.
F: Do you still play soccer still to this day?
K: Yes, I still play soccer during spring and summer when I have more free time. I have not played competitively in a long while though, I mostly play to keep myself fit and it is fun and stress relieving.
2.What new thing(s) you learned from each other
F: I learned that soccer is almost inoperable without socializing. Soccer takes people coming together and playing the game, similar to baseball and how every player literally needs one another to keep a game flowing. Soccer requires physical toughness, similar to that of baseball.
K: I have learned that we both have similarities in how we got introduced to our respective sports and that we both love and enjoy the competition and brotherhood formed by playing sports. You build a close knit bond with your teammates because they are the ones who protect you on the field of play, they are the ones that guide you and assist in times of help and that spills over to become a part of one’s general livelihood. I have made some of my longest and closest connections with former teammates that I have played with over the years. He did not start playing competitively until high school which was also similar to how my competitive career started.
3.What new thing the other person pushed you to learn about your own skill
F: Kebeon pushed me to learn why more people don’t exhibit the act of sportily brotherhood. What I mean by that is when a lot of people play baseball, they are only worried about their own performance and want to make themselves look good. Some baseball players don’t care about their teammate’s performance and won’t help them gain confidence when they have a bad game. I just want to understand why a lot of people don’t socialize more why playing this game.
K: Farley pushed me to realize that brotherhood in playing team sports is extremely important to have a great team performance and it also promotes a stronger bond with teammates. Playing soccer relies a lot on how well each member of the team communicates and works together.
4.What new perspective you gained from doing this exercise?
F: A new perspective I gained from this exercise is
K: From this exercise I have realized that no matter where you were raised there are people from different cultures that share the same upbringing and experiences that you have. We also share similar characteristics and the determination to strive for greatness in whatever we do.
Section 3a: REFLECTION ON YOUR PAIR
The peer exercise was a very interesting one, the conversation between Farley and I was a fruitful one. I felt like I got more insight on the sport of baseball due to Farley’s experience and love for the sport. I also found that we both express similar work ethics and always want to strive for the best. I think he will become an exceptional talent with his raw talent, hard work and determination.
Section 3b: OVERALL REFLECTION on this PROJECT AND GRADE
This unit has taught me that you can learn many things through interaction. You can learn how you and others have things in common and, also learn new things to add to your personal catalogue. Sometimes it may be a new skill like baking or cooking or information about a new sport which could heighten your interest. I have learned that just writing about a simple object that you possess can tell a lot about someone’s interests and personality. The class activities were always intriguing and encouraged my classmates and I to interact. My professor has great energy and was not afraid to open up about her own personal experiences during this tough time period we are in. that shows a lot of courage and character, it also made each student feel more confident to engage and interact with each other knowing our class was a safe space. Overall each activity in unit three was amazing and I would give myself a lovely A.