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Cristian Nuno

ENGL 5
September 21, 2016
Life and Literacy
Growing up, my parents valued education because they always wanted my siblings and I
to stay on top of our grades and that meant that over the summer we would go to the library and
spend hours looking at different books and eventually check a few different books out.Typically I
would get like action adventure books and comic books because I enjoyed looking at the
pictures. Each book helped me learn new vocabulary and gave me new experiences but it also
caused confusion when books didnt end the way I had expected them to. The library was a place
of mixed emotions because sometimes we would want to go and check out a book and there were
also the other times where we didnt want to be near the library because we just didnt feel like
reading at the time. Going to the library gave many opportunities to explore new genres, but it
also gave the opportunity to own a library card, having a library card was kind of a big deal when
I was growing up. The library card was a symbol of power amongst my siblings and me. My
sister was the first to get one because she was the oldest and that drove me crazy because when
we wanted a book we had to ask my sister for the card to check them out. I remember when I got
my library card it was one of the best day of my life because it showed that I was responsible
enough to check out my own books and keep track of the due dates. Having the power of the
card was both good and bad because there were so many choices and that also meant more late
fees. The thing that made me fall in love with the library was the variety because each book was
a new opportunity to live in a fantasy land or become a character who lived a life that dreamed

of, the books provided a new setting and a new character. There were always new opportunities
to read books not only at the library but also at school.
I went to a Montessori school that was K-8 and it provided a different style of learning
and gave more freedom in a sense. The school allowed each student to learn at their own pace
and when it came to reading projects you were typically able to choose whatever book you
wanted. Writing book reports and projects based around the book of your choice no longer
became something to stress about they became something to celebrate and enjoy. In the 5th and
6th grade I had discovered Percy Jackson and the Olympians book series. The books had opened
up a new world of opportunities and lessons. The books had made me passionate not only about
reading but they had helped me to develop my writing skills at the time because they gave me
substance and I was able to grasp a larger understanding for how things should be written and the
purpose that they serve.
The transition from elementary school to middle school wasnt as bad as I had expected
but the difficulty level for writing had greatly increased because it went from your choice to the
book that was given. In middle school writing became an everyday assignment because they
used bell work which was a writing prompt that was put onto the board then you would answer
the prompt and when everyone was finished you would share and receive criticism from student
around you. The bell work was an opportunity to work with others and gain writing and editing
skills. When you criticize the work of others and provide feedback it helps to improve your
writing because it provides comparison, when you get your own writing back you see the
mistakes that you made and things that you need to work on.
I think that middle school was a big eye opener especially when it came to transitioning
to high school because you go from working at your own pace and having deadlines at the end of

the week to everything due the next day or in class essays. My second year of high school I
decided to go to honors English just to try something new but the work amount was nearly
double and my quality of work slowly started to become worse and worse. My writing skills had
slowly deteriorated so I decided to see a tutor in the library during lunch and it was one of the
best decisions I had ever made I found myself slowly getting comfortable with writing and
slowly progressing and improving my writing abilities. The tutor was a teacher who decided to
help students whenever they could during lunch. It was nice to be able to get insight from a
teacher, the tutoring sessions didnt last long but the extra assistance during lunch was extremely
beneficial to my writing process. I found myself slowly succeeding and making more progress
than I wouldve achieved on my own.
My sophomore year had been successful so I decided that I would give honors English
another go. My junior year was by far my toughest but I had an awesome English teacher who
was passionate about the work that she did so she had striven to make sure that each student was
grasping the concepts and understanding the projects. In the class there were multiple group
projects and each provided a more difficult topic to write about. My favorite group project
required a group essay so it was interesting to see how the different writing styles would be
brought together to form a finalized paper. When you place multiple people together in a group
to write a paper you lose the aspect of freedom because you no longer have to think about your
own opinions and ideas but you have to take into consideration everyone else. The toughest part
about the project was deciding how to attack the topic and how we would incorporate the
different ideas. In this project choosing the best ideas was based off of group votes and what we
would see as beneficial for the paper as a whole. Overall I would say that it wasnt the best work
because one member decided to not do it till the night before but the rest of the project went

pretty smoothly. I would have to say that when it comes to writing I have had some success but
there have also been those moments of failure where I wasnt able to get my point across or the
purpose of the writing was unclear. You are always going to have failures before you have
successes thats just the way that life works.
To become a good at something you must first be taught lessons and experience failures
that way you know what needs to be improved and what changes can be made to strengthen your
abilities. I learned that to continue to grow you need to continue to work and collaborate with
others because they bring a whole new perspective to your writing and pieces that have been
written. From my writing experiences I only see myself growing through the good papers.
Currently I am taking a college English course and I believe that all the moments that I had listed
have prepared me to do a good job and learn even more things along my journey through life and
literacy I may not know what my major is but it could possibly include some forms of writing.