Humanities Final Portfolio 2013

There’s different sides to ourselves that we don’t really see at a first glance. Those parts of us can be brought out when we create poetry and view things about the world in different lenses. We not only learn about ourselves but we learn sides to people surrounding us and people who are thousands of miles away. Throughout the year, I’ve been able to see parts of myself that I haven’t seen before. Some parts surprised me and some parts led me to believe that there is something inside of me worth searching for and worth continuing beyond Mr.Block’s classroom.

In the duration of our English and History classes, I’ve found a particular interest in poetry. Poetry is a form of self expression and illustrates how identity can be found in anything. I enjoyed reading and analyzing poems but I especially loved creating my own poems. I was able to put myself into my work. I always put myself into my work whether it’s my opinion or beliefs in response to assignment questions, but in the poetry unit I was able to better talk about myself and let my audience know more about me. In my poem uniquely titled “Symone,” I let people see a side of me that they probably didn’t know. When you think of poetry, you think of fun rhymes such as “the green cat swung the blue bat” or something similar, but I learned that poetry is powerful with or without catchy phrases. One line to my poem was “I secretly have an unusual fascination with popsicles in the summertime, fireworks on the fourth of july and sand castles/ I assume it’s because I often find myself dedicating time to things that will only last a few moments.” Cool right? I was able to express myself in a creative way comparing moments that don’t last forever in contrast to what I dedicate my time on whether it’s relationships, friendships, etc. All in all, the poetry unit was the part I loved most about the year. I’ve been writing poetry on and off again but I found a particular spark this year. Poetry is, to me, the best form of self expression. You’re feeling sad? Write a poem. Spilled your milk on the table? Write a poem!

Seeing things in a different lens help create a better understanding of the world. Our lessons about colonization, has led me to learn that we often find ourselves trying to make other places like us because we, as a country, believe that we’re above third world countries. For example, when we learning about Haiti, I learned that we made them kill all of their pigs so none would get infected by the few that were sick. I also learned that we made them change their exchange routines in order for us to cheat them out of their money and live off of their profits, which isn’t fair at all.

I learned that although countries are different from the U.S., their way of doing things aren’t necessarily wrong. They have adapted their ways of doing things and it isn’t our place to try to come in and change it no matter the reason. Sometimes we come into other countries genuinely trying to help, but they don’t need help all the time.

Throughout the school year, by doing the work I’ve noticed that I have changed. I found parts of me within my work, within the problems we inquiry, and within our classroom discussions that ultimately shaped me into a different person. I’m not inferring that I changed as a whole, but I now have a new insight on the world and developed new ways of thinking about them. I’m very grateful for the chance to learn more about the world and identify myself within it. I’ve enjoyed the lessons throughout the year as a whole.

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