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EN105 Unit 7- Writing Portfolio

EN105 Unit 7- Writing Portfolio

TASK: Your portfolio is the culmination of all you have learned in this class so far. Your job is to show off what you have learned about writing in this course. How? By compiling your two best pieces of writing from the course, a new reflective essay, and other artifacts from the class that represent important steps in your learning this term.

Your two best pieces of writing should be major writing assignments that have been significantly revised, such that they are the absolute best writing you have produced for a class. (Most students choose to do further revision and editing to the pieces they have revised for the two revision projects.) These assignments should feel complete and finished, and you might think of the portfolio as a "publication" opportunity.

Likewise, your reflective essay should be carefully composed, revised, and edited -- it, too, should feel complete and finished. (See below for more specifics about the reflective essay.)

The trickiest part of this assignment might be gathering "artifacts" of your learning. What counts as an artifact? Well -- just about anything! Consider including any of the following:

  • Early drafts of your major writing assignments, to illustrate your growth

  • Writer's Journal entries that were particularly useful to your writing process

  • Copies of discussion posts that helped you to understand important concepts

  • Copies of peer or instructor feedback that you found especially helpful

  • Copies of peer review letters you wrote

Many students find it useful to think of their portfolio as sending a particular message about what they learned in this course. In the "Writing Processes" mini-lecture for unit 7, you will consider a number of approaches to talk with the selection of artifacts, arrangement of the portfolio, and approach to the reflective essay.

Writing is Changing my Life

College just isn’t for me. When I enrolled and was told one of my first classes would be writing I was hesitant to embrace it. I started this course and hadn’t written in over 20 years. Short text or emails are a norm, but I haven’t set down and written a paper since high school. The norm became avoid writing and now I feel a lot more confident after taking this class. It was a process of looking at my initial projects and re-writing them to suit college standards. I never looked at myself as a college student, let alone a writer. College to me was just a quick way to gather knowledge but never really achieve a goal. I have avoided college for so long and pushed away my dream in fear of writing. This course has humbled me It has opened my eyes to new styles and techniques.

Unit 2 was the start of something new I wrote about the power of influence which Is the beginning of a story about how my mother met my father and how they allowed their surroundings to influence their life. The story was all over the place, but I wrote it. I was able to reflect on my past and put it on paper. At this point, I realized I was able to tell a story, I knew I still needed to work on my structure, grammar, and college writing but this was a great start. I was able to learn and implement MLA which I had never heard of. It’s ironic my first assignment was about influence, and I had allowed dyslexia to influence my life and fear of writing. I once heard dyslexic people are above average communicators, now I’m able to do it not only verbally but in writing as well. This essay was a starting point for what is to come.

The first artifact I chose to include in my portfolio was Freewriting & Looping it was the start to building confidence at the time I had never written for 5 to 10 mins without stopping or exploring looping it was a first for me It’s like I tapped into a superpower. Writing will open so many doors for me and this part of the class gave me a skill that will help in my development in my writer’s journey. It allowed me to write without thought and just indulge in the process. This course has humbled me, and I will be freewriting and looping in the future whenever I get that block that I heard writers talk about.

Peer review was the next artifact Rich, was very observative and accurate in his observation. One of the first things I noticed in our class discussions was how Richards responded to the other classmates. I remember telling my wife “This guy in my class writes books for every discussion”. I was envious of his writing and slightly fearful when I was partnered with him. Judgment was imminent and my inability would be exposed. To my dismay, I was surprisingly pleased and appreciative of his feedback it helped me build a better piece and become a more intuitive writer. Peer review allowed me to see my writing from the reader’s eyes which helped me better build trust and establish credibility.

My favorite assignment was Unit 6th. It forced me to argue a point. I enjoyed looking at the piece from both sides and coming up with a compelling argument. Google isn’t making us stupid it actually makes me smarter. Since Google was first established it has saved me from thousands of trips to the library and provided me with a wealth of knowledge and I’m grateful.

Thinking back to Major Writing Assignment 4, was one of the hardest for me. In this assignment, I opened up about something that I have never talked about in the open my struggles with Dyslexia. Let’s talk about a sense of accomplishment not only am I writing I’m enjoying it. In my early draft, I couldn’t write a paragraph I used the freewriting technique just to get the idea on paper. I would later go back and organize and loop ideas to come up with my final draft which you will find below as one of my favorite pieces from the class. During this assignment, I reflected on my childhood and how I navigated through life. Having this disorder helped improve my oral communication, problem-solving, and delegation. These three things would become the go-to attributes that would contribute to my life’s success.

From this point, there is no going back. I look forward to my next writing class I have even taken the time to start working on my grammar and punctuation which I don’t think would have been possible without this class. If I had to do a call to action, I would encourage the future me to not quit and keep writing. With practice comes improvement and though I may not be perfect I see improvement.

Torey Crawford

Dr. Barbara Rowland

First Year Writing Seminar I Critical Reading, Writing and Thinking Across Conte

10 April 2022

Dyslexia made me better

Imagine being the popular kid that played all sports and could always capture the attention of a crowd, but you were hiding a massive secret. Growing up in my community you couldn’t show signs of weakness, or you would be looked at as less than. Only the strong could survive in the urban communities of Long Beach, Ca in the 90s. I wasn’t just strong I was one of the strongest and I had to uphold that persona. What would everyone think if they knew that I couldn’t read? Would that take away from my strengths? I would never find out as a child and wouldn’t accept my true self until I became an adult. Having dyslexia is a widespread disorder and is estimated to affect 5 to 10 percent of the population. Some claim that up to 17 percent of the population may have reading difficulties. It’s important to know that while dyslexia impact learning, it’s not a problem of intelligence. People with dyslexia are just as smart as their peers. Having dyslexia has helped me reach my full potential out of the fear people would find out. I would sit in the back of the class and make jokes. Everybody thought I was the class clown, but I was just afraid you would find out I couldn’t read. The teacher would call my name to read the board and I would instantly joke. As the class was laughing, I would be reading over the statement that the teacher asked me, and when all settled down, I would read it out loud. I miss assignments on the regular not because I didn’t want to do them it was just too hard to put what I wanted to say on paper. So, I would settle for the teacher telling me how smart I was, and I just need to put forth more effort not knowing that the one page they asked for I worked on for hours and never completed it. I was just as smart as everyone else I just hadn’t figured it out yet. Having dyslexia has been vital for me in improving my oral communication, problem-solving, and delegation.

One way in which having dyslexia has been vital to me is by strengthening my oral communication skills. I have been called a “hustle man” because of my ability to talk my way into anything. The fear of public speaking has never been a problem, I learn that I had to compensate for my written communication by improving my face-to-face skills. These are skills that I have honed over the years by using them daily, I become extremely comfortable and confident. I was deployed to Kuwait, we had four supply sergeants and we all were in 50-man sleep tents working out of a container. I noticed that I would see lots of empty tents and wonder why the supply was in one of those working. Walking around the Forward Operation Base (F.O.B) I can remember asking other supply sergeants “do you know if we can get other storage space” I must have asked 10 supply guys all to be told we get what we got. I wasn’t having it you would have to walk a mile to get food and it was 118 degrees plus at times. So, I did what I do best and started talking and introducing myself to the right people. Before you knew it, I had networked with everyone that mattered and could help my situation on the FOB. I secured my own personal 50-man tent with internet an office a supply storage room and an eating area. I had the food delivered to us three times a day so the other soldiers would have to walk. I even had engineers build living quarters for myself and my two soldiers. I also acquired 4 golf carts one for myself my Commander, First Sergeant, and the Battalion Commander. You could see the envy in the eyes of my peers. When asked how I did it everyone would say “with his gift of gab”. Having trouble reading and writing helped my oral communication. I had to improve orally to hide my faults and I learned to talk my way into and out of any situation. Ultimately it helped my communication immensely.

My favorite saying is “There are no such things as problems only solutions” having dyslexia I learned early to identify and solve problems. I had to pay attention to everything around me to avoid people knowing I had a disorder. Preparation became my friend and solution my family. As we set in class, and everyone started to read the assigned paragraphs I would be counting how many seats I am from the front and when it would be my turn to read. Not paying attention much to what others were saying but listening for my cue as I read over and over the passage, I would read. By the time it got to me, I could almost word for word the assigned material. I see a problem, which was if I wasn’t prepared everyone would know my struggles, so I solved the problem. How do you see problems? I’m able to visualize what I want the solutions to look like in the future and the strategy needed to get them there. I wouldn’t be able to do this if I wasn’t born with a learning difficulty. Problem-solving has become a second nation and I give credit to my disorder. I have been called a visionary because I am seeing solutions before problems.

Learning to delegate became my go-to and help me bring out my internal leader. I couldn’t go a day without delegating a task. I have always been a leader but allow fear to stop me, once I accepted who I was it allows me to see myself how others would see me. I started to notice that when I talked people listened. That was the first step in my journey to becoming the leader I am now. When I join the military, it helps a lot because everything was hands-on. Being that it was hands-on I excel quickly and established a leadership presence fast. That presence has been carried on in my career outside of the military and I give credit to my disorder for forcing me to step out comfort zone. Delegation is crucial it allowed me to hide from the real world. If a task was handed down that I felt, I couldn’t achieve I would take on a leadership role and delegate it. My give of gab helped establish credibility and that credibility helped me delegate undetected.

Dyslexia is only the beginning don’t let it be your end. Having the disorder helped me overcome my barriers and excel in other aspects. My success is because of my dyslexia, and I wouldn’t change it for anything.

Works Cited

4 April. 2022

Andrew Mckenna , 4 April, 2022

4 April. 2022

Torey Crawford

Dr. Barbara Rowland

First-Year Writing Seminar I Critical Reading, Writing and Thinking Across Conte

17 April 2022

Google isn’t the Problem

Technology has changed the way kids’ kid. I watched my son play a video game that I couldn't decipher with my own two eyes, yet he was navigating it flawlessly at a speed that was unbelievable. To him, he has seen nothing wrong, or it wasn't too fast. I would say his years of video games, tablets, and other devices have developed his hand and eye coordination visual awareness, and just overall ability to process things faster. Kids today are accessing areas that we at that age were not, starting a lot younger. How many two years old’s do you see with cell phones? Nicholas Carr argues that Google and the Internet are causing people to lose their attention span and their ability to think deeply. Carr fears that human intelligence will become oversimplified and impoverished into artificial intelligence if our society continues to rely too uncritically “on computers to mediate our understanding of the world” (34). Google will make our kids smarter and more efficient they can access information at the drop of a hat. My son tells me random facts daily all from which he gets off the internet and google. Though they may lack social skills and the ability to communicate face to face. They will be smarter and better than generations before. Where would our kids be without technology school would be different home would be different? Today I watch kids navigate cellphones and tables better than their parents and grandparents. I watch my 6-year-old teach her grandfather how to read because he came from an era that placed work and taking care of the family over education. I disagree with Carr’s idea that Google is making us stupid because of generational perception, the wiliness to adapt.

Let’s go back to the early 90s and let me ask you how many people utilize the internet how would you find the answer? How long would it take you to find it? Where would you find it? With the help of Google, I can tell you that 4.66 billion people utilize the internet that’s 59.5 percent of the global population (Johnson 1). It took me 10 seconds to find that, but in the 90s it would have taken me serval hours searching a library, figuring out the Dewey Decimal Classification. My mother, grandmother, and every one of that era will tell you how difficult it is to search google to use a cell phone. Not because it is hard but because it’s something new. Carr writes about how internet usage in the 21st century is changing people’s reading habits and cognitive concentration. Particularly, he emphasizes on Google’s role in this matter and its consequences on making people machine-like. Carr also stated that online reading largely contributes to people’s way of reading a book. He is extremely focused on the online reading that most affects people’s minds. Google processes over 3.5 billion searches every day, or, 1.2 trillion searches per year Chaffey (1). How many of you were told not to sit in front of the tv because you would go blind? Were there any facts to this statement? Scientific American, (2010) states “Luckily for many of us and our kids, sitting “too” close to the TV isn’t known to cause any human health issues. This myth prevails because back in the 1960s General Electric sold some new-fangled color TV sets that emitted excessive amounts of radiation—as much as 100,000 times more than federal health officials considered safe. GE quickly recalled and repaired the faulty TVs, but the stigma lingers to this day”. It all comes down to perspective and interpretation. Google works for those who take the time to learn and utilize the search engine. Is the publication relevant in 2022? This publication was set in 2008 when he was just 10 years old. The capabilities have changed and we as people are more and more dependent on technology. We must change or be left behind. Don’t be a 60s stereotype by following the trend.

Let’s take some time and navigate this cruel world. Who remembers AOL? How many people had pagers? I remember searching the library for my report because I waited until the last min and had to take a train and bus to be turned away. I was told that the book was checked out. The use of tech in older Americans has changed. According to the AARP's Tech Trends and the 50-Plus report, annual spending on tech has more than doubled for adults aged 50 and over since 2019. As Brady stated “The pandemic has accelerated the adoption of technology for older Americans. While social distancing and quarantines called for physical separation between friends and family, older adults have turned to technological devices to stay connected”. My grandmother refuses to learn how to use her phone let alone search the net. She still uses a yellow page which I didn’t know still existed. I can say she will sometimes find a phone number faster than me. But what happens when you can’t no yellow page is available? I feel at a certain age you should be refreshed on basic life skills and required to take entry-level windows and cellphone navigation courses. Adaptation is the action or process of adapting or being adapted. Open mind and being persistent help when learning to adapt. Google is designed to be easy to use and master. We live in a world filled with distractions can you refocus your energy through growth and development?

We all know that the internet is one big distraction, but 81 percent of experts polled by the Pew Internet Research Project say the opportunities outweigh the distractions. Norvig stated “Socrates was wrong to fear the coming of the written word: Writing has improved our law, science, arts, culture, and our memory. When the history of our current age is written, it will say that Google has made us smarter—both individually and collectively—because we have ready and free access to information”. In closing in google is the best thing to happen to us in the last 23 years. Without it where would we be?

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