My Educational Journey Assignments

Essay # 1— My Educational Journey


Going to school is time-consuming, expensive, and filled with many obstacles to overcome. According to Jean Anyon in “Social Class and the Hidden Curriculum of Work,” the school one goes to can shape one’s future economic social class. In the “Changing Educational Paradigms” video, Ken Robinson speaks to how a large portion of our education is similar to Anyon’s Working Class or Middle Class pedagogy & curriculum. She suggests that socio-economic forces play a much greater role in how our lives work out than we might imagine. Carol Dweck in “Brainology” shares the idea that how we approach our education can have profound effects on our success. Michael Miranda addresses our (often incorrect) myths that color our expectations of college and Rebecca Cox speaks to student anxieties that hinder their education in “The Student Fear Factor.” Finally, Devon Price unpacks the rationale for procrastination in “Laziness Does Not Exist” helping us understand why we procrastinate. The “Shift Happens” video speaks to the larger implications of how and why we learn as it relates to larger societal & demographic shifts.


In this first 4-page essay, use the readings (and videos) as well as your own experiences, to make the argument for what you can do to improve your academic self. Out of all the readings or videos, use at least two or more to support a single “Controlling Idea” (thesis) that shows how you will help yourself be your best academically. This is your core argument.

In other words, you can build your argument as such: “I will be my best academic self by (verb-ing) (resource) to help make me succeed.”

To think about:

· What is one important concept, research finding, theory, or idea that you learned while completing the readings?

· Ask yourself, “Are you a growth mindset student? Fixed mindset student?” and how does that influence you as a student?

· Do you see a connection to your own (W.C./M.C./A.P./E.E.) educational experiences and the student you are today?

· What strategies are you using to overcome or support the learning you have done previously?)

Use the readings to support your argument. You will discuss, given what you have already argued, what you think you should do to improve your chances of success in college.

Please create your own argument/main point (thesis), which you will support throughout your essay. All sub-points (Topic Sentences) should clearly support your main point (thesis).

Helpful hints:

· Make sure your main point (thesis /controlling idea) is focused on your main idea.

· Before you start, lay out a plan for how you would like to organize the order of your essay. In what order do you want your ideas to go? (strongest to weakest, weakest to strongest, chronologically, sequentially, etc..)

· Try to develop your ideas by analyzing why and how your experiences influenced you as a student and use the readings to support/substantiate that argument.

· Use at least two examples/sources (from our readings) per paragraph. (You must use each reading at least twice in your overall argument).

· Try to organize your writing in the shape of what you think an expository essay might look like, with a catchy introduction that gives background to your ideas and ends with your main point.

· Use paragraphs that clearly support your main point using evidence from the reading as well as your own and others’ experiences (be careful not to veer off topic).

· Wrap up your thinking with a conclusion that summarizes your ideas as well as leaves the reader thinking more in-depth about the topic.

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