For our 10th grade year in Mr. Block’s classes, Mr. Block has introduced us to many world issues with the work we were doing. Most of the issues, I didn’t know of. It was like watching World News in my classes. We would research what happened and write about it. In English and History classes, we would read a book and relate the issues from the book to the world. It’s the end of the school year, and now we have to create a final portfolio to reflect on what we had learned throughout the school year.
One of the greatest general understandings I learned in class is Creativity. Creativity is the ability to express your work in many different ways. One of my favorite quotes from class is, “One of the many ways a sculptor of ancient Egypt was described was as “one who keeps things alive.” (My response) People who write about the “mythic element of the story” keep the “art” alive in Haiti. The “art” keeps the moral of the story alive. People, who know about the “mythic element”, write about it as “art”. People will then discover the art, and inspiration will come. (Edwidge Danticat Chapter 1: Create Dangerously) I learned that the quality and understanding of the topic itself would help you create your piece of writing. One of my projects that I did with a partner was the “Passing Final Project”, where we read the book Passing and made an interview between the characters in the story. We made sure that the viewers were getting our message with the people we were using in our video. I wanted to make people see the element of the story of our interview. My creativity was very bland when I first came into Mr. Block’s class. As the year went by and is coming to an end, I can say that I feel my creativity has grown so much with the work I did in class.
Second to Creativity is Understanding and Hard Work itself. With all the work we did in class, there had to be a deep understanding of the topic. Understanding helped me with everything in class. It increased my creativity, because it helped me see things in different point of views. A quote I found from my Burden: Response Poem “They go and try to get rid of that burden/Working under any conditions/But all they can do is relief the burden”. When I wrote this, I tried to look at all the world issues brought up in class in different perspectives. At first, I thought that you could completely get rid of the world issues with that one solution. As I began to understand more about the world issues, I looked at the solutions to be insignificant to get rid of the issues. I found out that the solutions would only relief the problems the world is having. As much as it sounds bad, I see it in a new way. Instead of a solution, it’s actually just a relief to the burden. I feel that they find the biggest relief possible for the world’s issues. To relief the problems, it requires hard work. In my letter assignment I wrote “Self-control makes me work hard in school, working hard in school gains me trust from my parents, trust from my parents leads to my freedom.” I use to think that I only did work to do the things that I wanted. I now realize that that is not true. I learned that I did work to learn and discover new things. I work hard to give myself a good image that I am a hard worker and that I want to learn.
To sum it all up is my general understanding of Experience. In my descriptive essay, I wrote, “When we grow up, we leave our family and work everyday like adults. We don’t get to see much of our family after that. I try to cherish all the time I can spend with my family”. Back when I wrote the descriptive essay, I was thinking of the past summer with my whole family being together. Now it’s the end of the year and I’m thinking about what I learned and how a great experience it was learning in these classes. In May 2012, we had the Leah Stein Dance Company come teach us what “Art in The Open” was. “My first impression of the project wasn’t very good. I was very lost when I first met the Leah Stein Dance Company. I thought it was very weird to do dancing that involved your environment. It was something new that I was introduced too.” (Art In The Open: Final Response) It was a great experience doing Art In The Open. I found it to be very different from the usual dancing, but I need to understand what it was to express what I needed to do which was to dance. I can say this year was a good experience, an experience where I learned a lot that I will not forget.
Creativity, Understanding, Hard Work, and Experience is what I learned most throughout the year. Experiences are what this year created. All these general understandings link up together to create the experience I had learning.