Reflective Cover Letter:
I feel my portfolio says that as a
grader, my writing level has grown better, and I can improve my
past work. When you see my work, I try to get the reader to understand that the
way I write is to attempt to write as clearly as possible to get my message
across in answering the objective.
consider my strengths in English are understanding what the project is asking
for, and completing it. My weakness is the way I form sentences can confuse the
reader on what I’m trying to get across. I still want to work on forming
sentences better and also, stop making short sentences.
experiences in making this portfolio were that I finally got to see how I used
to write and watch as I progress through the year. I even forgot about some
projects and I would think to myself, “Where did the time go?” The issues I
encountered were that my quotes didn’t match my thesis in the quarter 1
benchmark, and some of my journals weren’t done so I had to finish them. I
resolved these by changing my thesis so I wouldn’t have to find all new quotes,
and I extended my journals revising them, too. I also, would confuse myself
with what I’m trying to say so I rewrote those parts.
piece I am most proud of is my Macbeth Creative comic book. I spent a lot of
thought and care into crafting this on Comic Life. I would go to YouTube and
watch each individual scene that had the quotes I chose in them, then I took a
screenshot of the moment when the character would say it and add it to the
comic to show the emotion given off when a character would say the selected
quote.Quarter 1 BM:
In this quarter we read the book Macbeth
Our benchmark was to choose either Macbeth or Lady Macbeth, and then use quotes
from the story that they or someone else said about them. We had to create a
thesis to state how they changed, then use the quotes to show how they
transitioned throughout the station.
personality changes throughout the story, he is afraid of using violence for
power, but then turns into an impulsive and violent person to withhold his
power as king.
In Act 1, Scene 3 of Macbeth, Macbeth
got news from Angus and Ross that Macbeth has been promoted to Thane of Cawdor.
Since the Wëird Sisters predicted that Macbeth will be king, he is wondering
how he will become it. Aside, Macbeth says to himself, “If chance will have me
king, why, chance may crown me without my stir.” (Act 1, Scene 3, Lines
143-144). This reveals that Macbeth doesn’t know whether to take matters into
his own hands or not. Also, Macbeth says it aside because he doesn’t want
anyone to know what the Wëird Sisters predicted.
Act 1, Scene 7, Lady Macbeth tried to convince Macbeth to kill King Duncan
tonight, and he is talking to himself alone on how to do it, but is still
unsure if he wants to. Macbeth is talking to himself again, “If it were done
when ‘tis done, then ‘twere well it were done quickly. If th’ assassination
could trammel up the consequence, and catch with his surcease success, that but
this blow might be the be-all and the end-all – here, but this here upon this
bank and shoal of time, we’d jump the life to come.”(Act 1, Scene 7, lines 1-7)
This reveals that he is strategizing how he is going to kill Duncan. Also, he
is having regrets because he wants to be loyal instead of a traitor just like
the previous Thane of Cawdor was. He is talking aside because he doesn’t want
anyone else hearing the plot he has to kill King Duncan.
Act 2, Scene 1, King Duncan is asleep, the guards are drunk, and Macbeth is
going to kill Duncan. Then, Macbeth is hallucinating and sees a dagger, but
can’t grab it. He leaves it alone, pulls out his dagger and then goes to kill
Duncan. Macbeth says, “Is this a dagger which I see before me, the handle
toward my hand? Come, let me clutch thee. I have thee not, and yet I see thee
still. Art thou not, fatal vision, sensible to feeling as to sight? Or art thou
but a dagger of the mind.” This reveals that Macbeth is scared, but he wants to
kill Duncan so he can become king and have more power.
Act 2, scene 2 of Macbeth, Macbeth
just killed King Duncan, and now he is hearing voices saying that he won’t
sleep again because he killed an innocent person while they were sleeping.
After Macbeth did the deed, he wasn’t thinking straight and was scared. Macbeth
says, “Methought I heard a voice cry “Sleep no more!” Macbeth does murder
sleep” – the innocent sleep.” This reveals that Macbeth is feeling guilty that
he killed someone while they were sleeping. Macbeth is also conscious that he
did something wrong, and is punishing himself mentally.
Act 3, scene 2 in Macbeth, Macbeth knows that Banquo has a suspicion towards
him for the death of King Duncan. So Macbeth is going to hire murderers to kill
Banquo. While Macbeth is talking to the murderers he says, “I’ll call upon you
straight. Abide within. It is concluded. Banquo, thy soul’s flight, if it find
heaven, must find it out tonight.” (Act 3, Scene 2, Lines 140-143) This reveals
that Macbeth would go to the extent of killing his best friends to get power.
Also, it reveals that Macbeth will somehow get what he wants when he wants it.
This is different than killing Duncan because now he doesn’t want the blood of
his own friend on his hands so he gets murderers to eliminate Banquo. This way
he can eliminate another possible threat trying to take away his power as king.
Act 3, scene 4 in Macbeth, Lady Macbeth asked Macbeth if he was a man. He
answered that he was a confident one that even horrifies the devil. Macbeth
says,” Ay, and a bold one, that dare look on that which might appall the
devil.”(Act 3, Scene 4, Lines 60-61) This reveals that Macbeth knows that he is
a courageous and scary person. It also means that he controls how he acts, he
wasn’t controlled by something else. Macbeth changed on purpose so he wouldn’t
feel the guilt when he murders someone.
act 4, scene 1 in Macbeth, Macbeth was just visited by the 3 apparitions, the
witches’ masters. The first apparition said to fear Macduff. After his
encounter with the apparitions Lennox told him that Macduff has fled to
England. Now Macbeth is hiring murderers again to murder Macduff’s wife, kids, and
everyone else in his castle. Macbeth says,” The castle of Macduff I will
surprise, seize upon Fife, give to th’ edge o’ th’ sword his wife, his babes,
and all unfortunate souls that trace him in his line.”(Act 4, Scene 1, Lines
172-174) This reveals that Macbeth is now killing people in an impulse without
thinking because he believes the witches and he wants to make sure he covers
all the bases. It even reveals that Macbeth is even more bloodthirsty.
act 4, scene 3 in Macbeth, Malcolm is ready to kill Macbeth once and for all
with an army backing him up. Malcolm says,” Come, we go to the king. Our power
is ready; our lack is nothing but our leave. Macbeth is ripe for shaking, and
the pow’rs above.” (Act 4, Scene 3, Lines 236 – 238) This reveals that Malcolm
has had enough of Macbeth murdering everybody. Also, Malcolm wants Macbeth to
taste his own medicine.
act 5, scene 1 in Macbeth, Lady Macbeth is sleepwalking and couldn’t believe
how Macbeth could be so evil and bloodthirsty because of all the people he
killed. Lady Macbeth says, “Yet who would have thought the old man to have so
much blood in him?” (Act 5, Scene 1, Lines 37-40). This reveals that Lady
Macbeth regrets making Macbeth kill Duncan in the first place because it is
somewhat her fault that all these innocent people are being killed.
act 5, scene 8 in Macbeth, Macbeth is in the middle of a fight with Macduff.
Macbeth would rather fight ‘til the end than surrender to Malcolm, and watch
him become king. Macbeth says, “I will not yield to kiss the ground before
young Malcolm’s feet.”(Act 5, Scene 8, Lines 27-30) This reveals that Macbeth
doesn’t want to die, but knows that he will because he noticed that everything
happened just like the 3 apparitions said he would die, Birnam Wood coming to
Dunsinane, fighting someone that wasn’t born from a woman, and to beware
should be thought as a loyal person, but people in his life influenced him for
the bad now he stayed like that. These quotes supported the thesis because from
the first quotes to the tenth, it is obvious that his personality has changed.
The first quote says that he is wondering if fate will have him king without
him not doing anything, but then in the second quote Lady Macbeth convinces him
that he has to kill Duncan to be king. The quotes after the second show how his
character doesn’t change back, but only gets worse and becomes bloodthirsty and
greedy. Macbeth killed innocent people just to stay in power. Then, Macbeth
killed Macduff’s wife and children because he was bloodthirsty. Shakespeare’s
message about life could be that people would go to extreme measures to get
what they want even if it means losing the important things in life.Quarter 2 BM:
For this quarter’s benchmark, we had to write a memoir
vignette. A memoir vignette is capturing a slice of a moment in your life and
writing it as vividly as possible. This story has to be connected to the author
“The First Time I Was
Called A Hero”
always dreamt of being a hero for a girl just like in movies. (Opener) What
happened last summer was similar to that. It all happened in the suburbs of
Allentown, Pennsylvania, where most of my cousins lived. I am the oldest in my
generation, so I play with little kids when I visit them. Their names are Nick,
Samir, Reshat, and Adrian and they are all boys.
We all were at Samir’s house
playing video games on his Xbox 360. It was really exciting because we were playing around and having fun
since we didn’t see each other for weeks. 1:00 in the afternoon came,
and we started getting bored. None of us had an idea of what game to
play next. We turned it off and just went outside. I noticed my aunt walking
into her house. It had been a while since I saw her. Zooming across the grass
and my cousins following me, I conversed with her and caught up with new things
happening in our lives. We then continued what we were doing. Adrian saw the
soccer goals in his humungous backyard and he came up with the idea to play one
on four, me on my own team to keep it fair. Reshat was about to get his soccer
ball, and that’s when it all started.
stopped moving and I just heard “LOOK!” (Dialogue)I looked in their
direction to see a huge, tall, black, and husky Pit bull going at about forty
miles per hour! It crossed the road and then aggravated Reshat. Possessively he
asked “Why is it peeing on my tree?!?” (Dialogue) My uncle saw the dog
too and called all of us to get inside. He went inside, too. Samir listened,
but not Nick, Reshat, and Adrian. Reshat encouraged Nick and Adrian to chase
the dog for no reason. I still find it confusing how my aunt was still there
and she was yelling at the three kids to come back and leave the dog alone. Her
voice was weak as she was. I noticed that they didn’t listen, and then I yelled
so they would hear. At this point, I think they don’t care about what anyone
tells them to do. The dog went in the backyard, and out of my sight. My cousins
went in that direction racing across the dark green grass. I had no intention
of chasing them; I think they were in the middle of a sugar rush … I’m not
sure. As I witnessed them trying to chase the dog they got out of my sight. Seconds
later, I saw the dog just appear out of thin air chasing them back trying to
attack the four boys. My cousins racing their hearts out even more. I blanked
out, and had no clue what to do. I could only hear the screaming and my aunt
shouting for help. HELP!! HELP!! RUFF RUFF GRRRRR AAAAHHHH!!!! HELP!! HELP!!
(Rep for Effect, Dialogue) So many things happened at the same time so soon.
and Nick managed to get inside, but Adrian is cornered in-between the two air
conditioners mounted to the side of Reshat’s house. Desperately he cried, “ROBERTO
HELP ME!” (Dialogue). I had to do something! At that point I risked my life
to possibly save his. Never
in my life have I ever seen that look of vigilance on anyone’s face until this
very moment. Somehow a little voice in my head told me to keep the dog
in one place and calm it down temporarily. I held the dog back by its body
right above its back legs, just enough to calm the vicious animal from clawing.
I told Adrian to run away, but that didn’t do anything. It just made the
situation worse. The dog turned its body and took a quick claw at my face
then chased after Adrian like he was ball that his owner threw to play “fetch”
with. (Simile) He got so scared, and trembled on the grass with fear and
surrender. The dog became even more vicious. He started attempting to bite, and
I still heard my aunt in the background trying to get help. It finally hit me;
the dog had a collar on so I grabbed the dog by its collar. It was perfect. I
was able to keep him in one place until my uncle came outside seconds later. He
told me to slowly let it go. I started walking in the middle of the street to
catch attention and started asking whose dog this was. It all happened so fast.
Dogs are not always affectionate as they show up on TV to be and can be very
defensive and violent. Also, they shouldn’t be messed with. (Realization)
As I asked all the nearby neighbors in sight, I kept hearing the same answer, “Sorry
that’s not my dog.” “I don’t know whose dog that is”. (Dialogue) At that
point I felt hopeless. I thought if I let the dog go, it would attack me too.
Luckily, a neighbor who is a dog owner offered me a leash to tie to the collar
on the dog’s neck. My uncle ran towards me and helped tie the vicious beast to
a tree nearby.
The neighbors called 911 and it was
finally over! I heard Adrian was badly scratched on his face and body. As my
whole family came outside, they noticed the situation and finally got the cops
and the ambulance to come. The cops were writing out their report while the
ambulance truck took Adrian away. Turns out he had several scratches on his
face and body and they took him to the ER to make sure he didn’t have any
infections or diseases. I had to be there for the police report to make up one
of my biggest lies ever to the cops to make it look like it was the dog’s fault
when it was clearly my cousin’s for chasing the dog in the first place. They
actually bought it because I never lied that good in my whole life. The cops
were able to get the owners, but I don’t understand how they didn’t get in any
trouble from the damage the dog did to Adrian and not keeping the dog
supervised letting it run free. I went inside my other uncle’s house to get the
horrible dog smell away and wash my face. I didn’t know what to tell him so I
gathered my emotions and told him about what happened in the calmest way I
could. He immediately got up and bolted to Nick. (Nick is his son and he wanted
to talk to him) Suddenly, my whole family came outside. My family is unusually
large in quantity by the way so it was a huge crowd. They all kept asking, “What
happened?!?” (Dialogue) It got annoying after awhile because I kept on
repeating the story and answering their questions. This changed the whole day
for me and everybody else. Out of all of the family members, my aunt was the
most thankful because she knew if I wasn’t there, she couldn’t have done
anything. The rest of the day was
too long. I also reeked of the dog’s smell that I couldn’t get rid of no matter
how hard I tried. I took a shower and changed my clothes but I still smelled
that distinct odor. I’m glad Adrian is okay though, he only had minor scratches
and the dog didn’t have rabies. This experience was extremely adrenaline
pumping and terrifying, but I still wouldn’t mind doing it again. As long as
I’m saving a girl. (Closer)Quarter 3 BM:
In this benchmark, I chose to compare the portrayals of
Cyclopes in artwork vs the portrayals of Cyclopes described in the book The
. I downloaded the artworks from the Internet, and used descriptions
from the book, and then compared them.
This quarter, our benchmark is to
compare the portrayals of Cyclopes on the Internet vs. how they were described
in the book The Odyssey. In Greek mythology, Cyclopes are one-eyed
giants. Cyclopes are interpreted and portrayed in so many different ways. You
can sight the different ways they are portrayed by searching for images , or
reading The Odyssey interpretations of Cyclopes. Although the portrayals
of The Cyclops in The Odyssey, and in artwork are similar in appearance, the
emotions conveyed in each version are different, which leads to different
interpretations of this mythical creature.
In The Odyssey, the Cyclops
described itself as fearless and extraordinarily strong. The Cyclops was saying
that it is not afraid of the gods’ powers, and that the Cyclopes have more
force than Zeus. “ ‘Stranger’, he grumbled back from his brutal heart, ‘you
must be a fool, stranger, or come from nowhere, telling me to fear the gods or
avoid their wrath! We Cyclops never blink at Zeus or Zeus’ shield of storm and
thunder or any blessed god – we’ve got more force by far”. (Book 9, Lines
306-311). The Cyclopes in The Odyssey all use humungous clubs, or as
Odysseus described it as huge as his ship. “ Here was the plan that struck my
mind as best… the Cyclops’ great club: there it lay by the pens, olivewood,
full of sap. He’d lopped it over to brandish once it dried. Looking it over, we
judged it big enough to be the mast of a pitch-black ship with her twenty oars,
a freighter broad in the beam that plows through miles of sea – so long, so
thick it bulked before our eyes.” (Book 9, Lines 356-362) Judging by how
massive the Cyclops’ club is, its body is even more monstrous. Also the
Cyclopes’ have one eye, it is mentioned in the title of Book 9, “In The
One-Eyed Giant’s Cave”. Lastly, in the Odyssey, the Cyclops was always mad when
it was talking to Odysseus.
In artwork, the three Cyclopes
downloaded from the Internet all are huge, strong, and imposing. In the second
interpretation, the Cyclops is holding a large wooden club. In each artwork,
each Cyclops has only one eye. Additionally, the emotion in each of their face
is either calm and serene or happy. In the second and third artworks, the
Cyclopes are interpreted as monsters, while in the first artwork, the Cyclops is
portrayed as a man. The artworks are at the end of this document.
In both the artwork and the book,
the way the Cyclops was portrayed and interpreted were both similar and
different. They were different by their emotions given off, and are similar by
their appearance. For example, they are all huge and strong, and all have one
eye. Also, by the similarity with
them having a club. Although, they are different by their emotions because in
the artworks they appear as calm, serene, and happy. Whereas in the book the
emotions the Cyclopes give off to Odysseus are anger and hatred. These examples
show that the interpretations are more similar than different. The only way they are different is by
their emotion, the Cyclops in The Odyssey is angry while the Cyclopes in
artwork are neutral. What if Cyclopes were actually very different than what
people portray them as if they really existed?
In this project, we had to come up with a creative idea to
present our Q1 Benchmark. I chose to do a comic and named it “How Evil People
Click HereIndependent Reading Project:
This is the first independent reading book of the school
year. I read the book The House Of The Scorpion
, and wrote a summary
along with my opinion on the book.
This work of art I just finished reading is called The
House of The Scorpion, written by Nancy Farmer. Nancy Farmer has written 6
other novels, and several picture books and short stories. For this book in
particular, Nancy won 12 awards. They include "National Book Award",
the "Newbery Honor" and the "Michael L. Printz Award For
Excellence In Young Adult Literature".
main characters in the book are Matt, El Patrón, Maria, Celia, Tam Lin, The 3
Keepers, and the Lost Boys. Matt is a clone that has El Patrón’s DNA. El Patrón
is the original Matteo Alacrán, and also a powerful drug lord. Maria is the
younger daughter of Senator Mendoza. Celia is the chief cook and Matt’s
caregiver. Tam Lin is a bodyguard for both El Patrón and Matt. The three
keepers are named Raúl, Carlos, and Jorge, they take in Lost Boys and put them
to work. The lost boys’ names are Chacho, Fidelito, Ton-Ton, and Flaco, their
parents were arrested for crossing the border while they were left behind and
took in by the Keepers.
In this story, Matt was born by El
Patrón’s DNA being put into the womb of a cow and the cow giving birth to it.
Celia has raised him as her own until one day when a couple kids enticed him to
come and play outside. The door was locked so he broke the window and got out,
only to find out that he cut his foot on shards of glass from the window.
Moments later, he is in a big house with maids treating him. Everybody knows
who he is and then calls him a monster because he is a clone. Rosa, a
housekeeper, then let him sleep. The next day, he was put in a shed with hay
all over the floor and fed daily, basically jailed.
After a long time, Celia found him
and got him out. El Patrón came and met his clone for the first time. El Patrón
punished Rosa by turning her into an eejit, a robot with a chip planted in
their brain that only allows the robot to do 1 simple task. El Patrón leaves
because he can’t stay in that house. To assure that Matt isn’t going to be
harmed, El Patrón lets Matt choose one of his bodyguards, and he picks Tam Lin.
Tam Lin watches him and teaches him to ride a horse after school with his own
eejit as a teacher. As the story goes on, Matt hears bad things about El
Patrón, but doesn’t believe it. It was until he found out that there were other
clones of El Patrón and he used their body parts to keep El Patrón alive and
live the lives that his brothers and sisters never had. Matt’s only option is
to escape, but he knew it wouldn’t lead to freedom.
When the day for Matt to die came,
the whole story turned by what Celia has done to Matt and sabotaged El Patrón’s
plan. El Patrón dies and Tam Lin helps Matt escape by telling him what to do
and where to go. Tam Lin even gave him a chest with books, water, and note. As
Matt is escaping, the Border Patrol catches him so he explains to them a story,
then they take him to the keepers. It is like an orphanage without getting to
be adopted, where keepers look after the “orphans” as they feed them and give
them work to do. Matt is friends with the other lost boys. There isn’t any hope
for any of them because they can’t escape. This changes when Jorge, one of the
keepers, starts to beat Ton-Ton, and the rest of the boys join and fight back
This results to Chacho and Matt
being dumped in a hole of dead bodies. Chacho got hurt from the bones crushing
him. They finally escape by climbing out of the whole. Then Ton-Ton and
Fidelito came to them with the shrimp harvester and escaping with it. After a
long ride to San Luis, the boys run into Guapo and Consuela. They offered to
drive them to the hospital using the hovercar. At the hospital, the sisters
then were treating him. As, Matt and Fidelito were walking to see Chacho, they
noticed Ton-Ton mouthing “run” because the Keepers were there trying to take
Chacho. The keepers saw Fidelito and Matt and they started gripping them up to
bring them back to the plankton factory. Everyone was fighting back until Doña
Esperanza came and cleared the whole fight up by getting Ton-Ton to tell the
whole story why everyone was fighting.
The keepers were arrested because
she knew they were trafficking drugs and used that against them. After all
this, Doña Esperanza discusses with Matt about what he should do when he will
be the new reigning drug lord. Matt is now back to Opium, where he now has to
complete the mission Esperanza gave him.
type of conflict in this book is person vs society because the antagonists were
all against Matt and the orphans for different reasons. One reason is because
they escaped from the orphanage, and the second is because Matt was a clone
that escaped his death that was supposed to die and give organs to El Patrón.
opinion towards this book is very positive and I enjoyed reading it from cover
to cover. This book kept me entertained and has a great plot. This book doesn’t
have any weaknesses in my opinion because it was such a great story to read and
I could almost feel like I was there watching everything in 3rd
person POV. Also, there is nothing in this book that I would change.
I recommend this book to other people? Yes, most definitely I would recommend
it. As, I stated in the previous paragraph, it is a great plot and it will keep
the reader anxious to find out what happens next.4 Journal Entries:
These are 4 journal entries that I wrote. Mrs. Dunn gave us
a question to answer each day and these are the ones I enjoyed writing about
To me, fitting is somewhat important. This is because life
isn’t fun without friends. I don’t do much to fit in because the kind of
friends I have, all have different personalities and we get along like we’re
family even though we only knew each other for a couple of months.
have never done anything as a part of a crowd and felt bad about it after. This
is because I never get the chance to do stuff like that. The people I hang out
with don’t attempt to or do anything in life they would regret. Although, if I
did have a chance to participate in such activities, I would’ve thought twice
about it to know what I was getting into.
I were to have a fresh start in one part of my life, I would start high school
over again. I chose this specific option because I don’t want people to look at
me as just that quiet guy. I would’ve done everything right. With a fresh
start, I would take my high school experience and stay on top of work to relax
and socialize without thinking a project is due the next day and I didn’t start
it yet. Socially, in that period I could’ve made more friends, knew more people
in the school, and actually “have” fun in high school just like everyone says
winter break just ended and I’m back in school. Just imagine the joy on my face
coming back to school when I just spent half of my break doing schoolwork. Yes,
the break felt really short. I didn’t get to do all the things I wanted to, but
at least I got most of my work done.
all the cons of my break, there were many pros to it, too. For Christmas, I got
a drum set that I wanted since I was a little kid, some clothes, money, and a
warm and cozy Snuggie! The rest of the break I spent at my cousin’s house
sleeping over. New Years was WAY better though! The whole family got together
and had a party. For the first time in a long time, I actually had fun at a
makes someone a good storyteller is by no matter what the story is, the person
can make the story realistic. Personally, I like when someone makes a story
funny when its not meant to be funny. A good storyteller can bring the story to
life just enough to visualize what the scene would look like to be experiencing
it instead of just hearing about it.
Now, with a good storyteller, you
need a good story. A good story is when there is meaning to the story. By
meaning, I mean to tell a moral, to use to make a joke out of, to tell a good
past time, etc.