Seminar Assignment: How my writing has changed.

Overall, there are three improvements I can identify in my writing over this school year.

The first of these changes is that I don’t use any of those sentences that go “One of/One example of/The first yada yada… is yada yada,” thus cutting down on my use of the weak verb ‘to be.’

In my early writing, I repeatedly noticed repeated words in the same assignment. This repetition, as it repeated, became annoying to read. I stopped noticing that as I kept reading, however.

Lastly, I no longer constantly use long, confusing sentences, both because I split them up into a mixture of short and long sentences, and because I can restructure my ideas so they flow easier. I do still love my long sentences, though.

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The Changing of Written Works

I feel like my writing has improved throughout the year. Not just my writing but also the way I work at it.

My writing has improved in multiple ways including the use of stronger verbs and less mistakes. In the first post I had made there were many mistakes that I made. I fixed some but I noticed that there were still others that weren’t fixed. Looking back to my most recent submission I have noticed I made less mistakes and some newer mistakes. I also have started the use of block quotations.

The way I work has also changed from when I once preferred music and didn’t mind working close to others in the beginning of the year. Now this has changed so that now I usually like to work in silence by myself.

I think that my writing has improved due to criticism while my method of doing work has changed because of depression.



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Independent Reading Improvements– at least I hope I have improved, otherwise this whole entire school year would be a complete and utter waste of so many people’s time

After reading my independent reading journal, I feel extremely bad for my teacher. Because he had to put up with boring and dry writing for quite some time. I appreciate his patience with my writing and how it gradually (very gradually) got better. If he didn’t point out how I use too many commas or my sentences that were constructed rather oddly, then my writing wouldn’t have improved at all. I used to not have variety in my sentences– which I figured out after reading: “The quotation that I chose”, over and over again. Not only did I keep on making those mistakes, but I continued to use weak verbs constantly. And add extra commas, fearing that I didn’t have enough. Lastly, I had weird phrasing that I used to make my writing sound formal, but instead that turned into awkward expressions. My writing has changed quite a lot, but I do still make those pesky “little” mistakes still. However, I need to continue to work hard at fixing those mistakes in drafts, so that I can make sure to improve instead of relapse.

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(Bella) independent reading journal improvements

I think i’ve began to put more information and detail, such as in the Eragon journals i have made recently, i’ve been putting more effort and detail into doing them because i am actually understanding the story and what’s going on through it the plot, and i think im doing better at putting that information into my reading journals. The books that i’ve been reading recently are also books that i am interested in, such as speak, wintergirls, and Eragon.

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I feel like I have gotten a little bit better at writing since the beginning of the year in a couple different ways.

One is that I feel like my writing is less choppy and repetitive, and usually it seems to kinda flow a lot betterly. Just kidding, but I think it has. The other is that I have a bad habit of saying “blahblahblah is blah” or “another thing is this. another thing is…”. Since the year began I’ve learned to do that less. Or maybe “conditioned” to do that less is the better word. Either way I’ve gotten better at writing which is good.

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Overall Changes within Journals

After reading all of my independent reading journals, from the beginning of the year to March 15, I’ve noticed some significant changes. The first few journals lacked detailed descriptions of what was happening in the novels I had read. I believe this was simply due to the fact that this platform of reflections was new to me and I didn’t know exactly what was expected. In many of my posts I forgot to add a quotations or punctuation. Overall, I’ve definitely realized I need to reread my posts before publishing them to the blog, because I have plenty of misspelled words. At the beginning of the year I just wanted to finish the assignment and get it over with but as I’ve continued on with my classes and reading, I’ve come to appreciate the questions books bring up and the emotions tied into the stories. I’ve grown as a person in these last few months, as my writing can reflect.

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Seminar Assignment: May 25, 2018

1. Go back to your first post of this school year, and re-read all of your posts since September. You can do this by clicking on your name in the sidebar under “Authors & Posts,” and then scrolling to the bottom and reading “up” from there.

2. Write a post in which you describe how your writing has changed this year, if it has, and how and why you think it has changed. If you think that your writing has not changed, write about why you think that is. Category: Writing.

3. If you complete # 1 and #2 and still have time, read some of your schoolmates’ recent posts and leave supportive comments for them.

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May 15 IRJ

I am reading Brainstorm by Daniel J. Siegel. Brainstorm is about the psychology of adolescent brains and how it differs from adults, and how you can harness the good qualities of an adolescent brain for the rest of your life. In this passage the author is talking about the four features of the adolescent brain’s growth, and their upsides and downsides:

Novelty seeking emerges from an increased drive for rewards in the circuits of the adolescent brain that creates the inner motivation to try something new and feel life more fully, creating more engagement in life. Downside: Sensation seeking and risk taking that overemphasize the thrill and downplay the risk result in dangerous behaviors and injury. Impulsivity can turn an idea into an action without a pause to reflect on the consequences. Upside: Being open to change and living passionately emerge, as the exploration of novelty is honed into a fascination for life and a drive to design new ways of doing things and living with a sense of adventure (pg. 7).

I found this quotation very interesting and applicable because I’ve noticed this happening a lot in my life, i.e. I’ll have a period where I’m really obsessed with a genre of music, or with a video game, or with an artist. To some people this may be considered fickle or undedicated but I think what this passage is trying to say in part, is that this is actually a very natural and even healthy part of life, and always switching between your interests and hobbies is just the way a person stays interested and engaged with life. This passage especially was interesting and helpful to me because this idea of “novelty seeking” is something I see in my life a lot, and have seen in others, but I didn’t know until I read this passage that it was kind of a “thing,” and that there was even a name for it.

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IRJ May 15

I am still working on finishing The Guns of August by Barbara W. Tuchman. The beginning wasn’t easy to get through but I’m a little over halfway done now. I am enjoying the book a bit more than I have been, since the battle has begun. I wasn’t anticipating being sick for two days and I left the book on my desk. I really love the way Tuchman describes the events in such detail. I will add another post with my favorite quote so far on Monday.

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Bellas Independent reading journal

Eragon by Christopher Paolini

In this passage Eragon is trying to figure out a way to either hide is dragon (Saphira) from the strangers or to tell Garrow about the amazing creature but when he tried to get Saphira to agree with him she wants nobody to know she is there. Saphira became angry with Eragon for what he was trying to do, so she picked him up and then went flying with Eragon on her back. Although the flight  would have seemed magical, it really wasn’t the whole time Saphira’s sharp crystal scales were slighsing into Eragon’s legs which resulted in him having trouble staying on his feet.

As he struck the ground, his knees buckled, and his cheek slammed against the snow. He grasped as excruciating pain seared through his legs, sending tears to his eyes. [72]

I chose this passage because this was a big step for Eragon and Saphira, he had never ridden a dragon, and Saphira was probably trying to let him know that he can trust her.

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