Throughout Sophomore year there are many useful tips I have learned from my journey through English. Most of them have to do with not procrastinating as much, so I would actually receive a decent grade on a good piece of writing. Although this never actually got any better as the year went on, I learned how to cope with it, and write a pretty decent story in a night. Our last piece of writing was an entertainment speech in which I changed my topic 3 times before I finally found a topic I liked and could write a lot about. I started with a poem about soccer in general and kind of how it was like for me right before y sophomore season, but I didn’t actually say anything directly connected to my struggles or set backs. My second piece that I began writing was a how to on kicking a soccer ball. This one wasn’t bad, but it lacked detail and I hadn’t put a whole lot of thought into the piece. This was also going to be what I used if I had to wing it on the first day of presentations. My third piece was a lot better and I thought it was more me than any of the other pieces that I had written. This one was a short story about our soccer game against Norris and how it was a new year, but we had the same thing happen as it did my freshman year. This piece was a lot better and contained a lot more details about how everything had gone down and all the preparation in advance of the game. This was the one that I wrote the night before it was due, but it worked out and it wasn’t half bad for quickly writing it and thinking about all the details I needed to add to make it an even better story.
Another thing I learned a lot about in English this year was speeches. At the beginning of the year I was very skeptical of how the speeches were going to go for me because I am not very comfortable standing up in front of people and speaking without messing up and trying to have most all of it memorized. By the end of the year I was still not very comfortable standing up in front of people and speaking about a certain topic, but I thought during our last major speech I thought I was more confident than I was at the beginning of the year. During every speech I would have my whole speech written out and then highlight certain key parts of the speech that I needed to make sure I touched on at least a little bit. This I thought helped me a lot because then I didn’t lose my train of thought and I wasn’t stuck up there with nothing to say. Speeches were something that I never waited until the night before they were due to complete them. I always made sure I had them done a couple days before I presented, or otherwise I would have completely bombed the whole speech because I would not have been able to think about what I wanted to say and I would have had no practice saying it in front of someone.
The adversity paper was one that was a little harder for me to write since it was about something that was very personal to me. In this paper I talked about my 7th grade year at Lincoln Lutheran and how it was a hard year for both my family and the community because there were 2 suicides and my grandpa had died suddenly the same year only 2 days after my birthday. I also talked about how only two years later my other grandpa had died; also very close to my birthday. I connected all of this to how it felt as it I had this weight on my shoulders through both of these passings and how with each one it never got any easier to deal with how much I missed them and how I was never going to see them again here on this earth.
Throughout the year my ability to read has gotten better, but it still needs to improve a lot. My thoughts from the beginning of the year and now have not really changed a whole lot since I still am not a big fan of reading, but will do it if I have to. I don’t always pay close enough attention while reading which has hurt me when it came to the final project, but I normally managed and was able to get through the project at least pretending I knew what I was talking about. I was not always a fan of the books we read because they weren’t always interesting to me. This is why I think it was harder for me to pay attention to what I was reading and then at the end knowing about what I was talking about when I was presenting my project to other people in the class.
All in all my journey throughout Sophomore year was a long and very successful journey. I learned how to be more calm and collected while talking in front of people and I learned how to write good pieces of writing with good details and showing more than telling about what I was trying to write about. There were times where I did not understand what we were suppose to be writing, but in the end it all worked out and there were so many new tips that I will be able to take with me as I move along in my journey through English throughout the next couple years to come.