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Blog Post #7: Fall Portfolio

Dear Reader,

This has been a busy semester! Between writing with my Pre-AP, regular English 9, and my graduate class, I am pretty sure I’ve written between 100 – 200 pages this semester. (That’s typed pages, too.) I’ve had a lot of writing to do.

It was actually difficult to choose three pieces. The first one I chose is my draft for the word narrative, “Intrepid Perfectionist.” I really like this piece because it was so current: what I was writing about had just happened, so I was able to describe it in more detailed and interesting ways. There were a lot of sensory details inside it, which readers liked: “The hold music for Southwest Airlines cheeping in my ear did nothing to slow down my heartbeat. I hoped that the people standing beside me in the TSA line couldn’t hear it — I felt like my veins were about to explode out of my body” (Melly 1). This still helps me remember how it felt to be standing in line for my flight–and it helps me know that I never want to be in that situation again!

My second piece is a blog post about Mrs. Dubose from To Kill a Mockingbird. I think this is one of the most honest blogs that I wrote, and I like that it gave me a chance to be honest with my classes about the “dark side” of teaching–the idea that I’m still learning or figuring out what I think about the things we are working on. In my blog, I wrote, “A lot of her personality repels me, and I think she’s meant to–she’s rude, insulting, and just plain mean. Associating her with racial slurs and racist attitudes shows that those attitudes should also be repellent. I get that. What complicates her are the ways Atticus talks about her after she is dead.”  This part of my blogs shows that I feel conflicted about her, and I hope it shows that is OK.

The third piece I am including in my portfolio is a piece of one of my  writing assignments for my UMSL graduate class. This assignment asked our class to consider our history of “literacy” : who we were as readers, writers, thinkers, learners, and (for me) as teachers. I really liked writing about my teachers for this piece, and included stories s of great teachers, terrible teachers, and who I am as a teacher. One of  my teachers,  Miss Mooney, gave me one of my worst memories: “The entire class laughed. I turned deep, hot red and shoved the sunglasses as deep as they would go inside my desk. I wished I could shove my entire body in the desk behind them and disappear. Though I was used to being on the outside as an elementary school student, a teacher had never put me there before” (Melly The experiences I had with her made me want to be a teacher and do better. I really wanted to include this piece in my portfolio to show that.

I learned this semester that, more than anything, I need to leave myself space and time to write. That time is set up in different ways, too–25 minutes of writing in a row is the most I can do without a break! I’m hoping that next semester, I’ll be able to write more alongside classes and help them become more independent as we go.

 

Love,

Melly

 

Portfolio Contents (click each link to visit!)

Title Description
Word Narrative: Intrepid Perfectionist This is the first thing I wrote as part of our class this year: my word narrative draft. It’s a good starting point for my writing.
Blog Post #6: “Mrs. Dubose” This informational piece about Mrs. Dubose is a short blog post on my mixed feelings for this character.
UMSL Assignment: “Lessons” The literacy history was an assignment worth 30% of my grade in my UMSL graduate class this semester. It tells multiple stories of my (not always smooth) path to become a teacher. The excerpt here includes the introduction and conclusion, plus the story of the worst teacher I ever had.
Published inPre-AP ELA I

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