The theme for English round three is identity. Because we are at the age to start planning our future and thinking about college, the aim of literacy this round is to start understanding more about ourselves and or course start writing college essays. In total, everyone wrote three essays, but choose only one that they think is the best and would get them into a college if they were to apply. The essay below is about my relationship with science. Enjoy reading!
Science has opened realms of understanding for humans ever since it came into existence. It is a way to explain concepts with proof and reasoning. But for me, it is beyond that. For me, science is more than a subject at school or a topic to discuss to sound nerdy. Science is part of me, that I still have yet to learn about. I am intrigued by science and especially intrigued by how it influences me.
In Cambodia, opinions of a child are seen as less important than the elder’s’. But science taught me to break that cultural barrier and have my voice be heard when I refused to drink honey with energy drink as replacement for a vaccine of a newly discovered hazardous disease that didn’t even affect Cambodia. Back then, even though I didn’t fully understand how vaccines work, I was able to piece information together and be an advocate for what I believe in.
Science taught me to make better choices in my life. That does not limit to only my choice of diet and lifestyle since it taught me to be a critical thinker. I’ve learned to ask questions and explore more than one side of a story or topic before picking my stance. I’ve become a critique of my own thought in choices and decisions making.
Science helps me cope with mortality and sometimes other personal matter. It explains death and the cycle of life in a way that is soothing and complete. It helps me stay calm and not freak out over physical symptoms that others may take as signs of lethal consequences. It helps me understand what healthy is and not diet to fulfil the beauty standard by the unspoken messages of society.
To name a few, these are only some ways science help shape my everyday life. Soon, it will too, shape my future. Science will help me to unlock doors to knowledge that will enable me to save lives of people who need medical care and empower science in my home country just like it has empowered me.
This second unit of our literacy class, our main focus is communication. We learn not only to communicate through spoken but also written words. One of the topics covered was active listening. Through this topic, we realized that we mostly listen to speak, listen so we can interject our ideas, and not listen to listen. Active listening is really skill important to have because, in a complex problem or conflict, it requires us to open our mind and hear what others have to say. Active listening also shows a person speaking respect, for an example if they are speaking about a topic that sensitive, it is best to give them all the space they need, and not distract their thought and speaking process.
To practice this skill we now learn to be very important, we spent one hour of our class time just talking to classmate whom we are not so close with. We were to pick a partner and share something about ourselves that matter to us or speak about something that we are passionate about. I paired up with another girl in my literacy class who also share many other classes with me but never interact often enough to considered close to me. We found a comfortable room and sat in a chair face to face making eye contact as one person talk and the other listens.
With that, something miraculous happened. We allowed ourselves to be vulnerable and share stories we don’t often do about ourselves: stories we don’t feel comfortable talking about. Through this, we able to connect to one another very closely, as we soon realized that we have so many things in common. I felt as though, I learn and get to know her better in this one hour than I had in six years we had been in a boarding academy together.
Anyways, that is just one aspect of our unit. Another aspect is etiquette writing where we focus on writing professional Emails and making résumé. In this topic, we learn and practiced writing professional to someone we have never met. We pretend that we have to ask a fashion company for an internship company through Email. It was a really great exercise for us to do because we actually send the Email to someone we know who has been working on communication for longer than we have existed. We got feedback and suggestions on our Email to help us grow as communicators.
Lastly, we dive into video conferencing. In this session, we learn how to group call which can be a really difficult task to do. It is already awkward to just call someone and try to make eye contact with them by staring at out PC camera, doing it a team makes it even trickier. But through our lessons and practice, we learned to divide roles in video conferencing and group calling easier to archive. But good networking and communication skills don’t come to us naturally, so we have to always keep practicing.
During this first round of literacy unit, our class focus mainly on reading passages that are about the American history to help us better prepare for the upcoming SAT test. So far, we’ve read about the liberty of America, slavery and their civil war, the meat packing industry, their shifting views on immigration, the great depression, and their involvement in World War II. We learned how the result of these past events still influence America today through our students-facilitated discussion and our independent response to the article we’ve read. Doing this has really helped me; it gives me more context of understanding when I have to read the history passages of the SAT where the narrator allude to historical events. On the other hand, it also help me build up my vocabulary. After reading every passage, we would have to identify, the words we don’t already know or words we don’t feel comfortable using then find its definition and write some sentences for them in a document which we call it the Vocabulary exploration.