Alya P.

7th-grade English Portfolio

My Portfolio Reflection

1. How would you describe your writing at the beginning of the year and how would you describe it now?

My writing in the beginning of the year was not as strong as it is now. I think this might be because I wasn't as focused and I was not as strong of a writer as I am now. Now at the end of 7th grade I feel that my writing has improved very much. I feel my writing is stronger because I am more focused and have better skills.

2. What do you consider your writing strengths? Explain.

I think my strengths in writing are that I am good at organizing ideas so that they make sense and flow. I feel I am good at staying on the topic and focusing on that one topic. I also think I am good at getting the readers attention and good at pulling them into the writing piece.

3. What writing skills do you need and/or want to continue to develop next year? Explain.

I need to work on the little details like spelling over just skipping over something that might look minor when it is major. And I want to continue to ask for help, because sometimes I will be stubborn and not ask questions and just do it my way. When that can hurt me, I also want to work on being a good writer.

4. What piece of writing from this year best captures your growth as a writer and thinker? Explain why.

I am  proud of my Walrus and The Carpenter Essay.I feel that this captured my growth as a writer because I worked so hard on it. This one was my favorite because I felt I worked the hardest on it and I spent the most time on it. I also thought that Mrs. Ellis was very proud of me on this essay.

5. What piece of writing from this year are you most proud of? Explain why.

The Walrus and the Carpenter was my writing piece that I am most proud of. I worked my hardest on it, and I felt that the topic grabbed my attention very well.

Holocaust Letter

I picked The Holocaust Letter because it was one of my favorites and I felt that I worked on it very hard. I liked it because I was writing from the perspective of a Jew during that time.

Letter #4

Hello my dear friend Alicia,

It’s great to hear from you, I thought you forgot about me. It is very different here. It’s so dirty, cold and yet surprisingly there are trees growing, I actually saw plants coming here it was magnificent. I am still thankful, that I am still alive.

My Father has not been sent away from me nor mother, and I am very thankful for that. My “new home” is kinda different. There's so much sadness, I don't wanna be here. I just can't take the pain and I miss things like freedom and cleanliness.

We are moving from our ghetto and going to a Deportation camp. We have to pack up all the things we still have( not that we have a lot of stuff), but at least that is a sign of us moving forward. I can not sleep, I hear babies, children, women, men, and I cry every night of the thought of my sister, She means so much even though she isn't hear. Why, is this happening to us? Why? What have we done? If only things were different, my mother say, “Keep your hopes up, believe.” Father mentioned, “ I know we will survive.”

My Father and Mother are always with me, I love them so much, if I loose them I may not stay here any longer. Sometimes I wish we could just hide. The next place we are going to is about 5 hours, that is said. We are walking half way, then taking buses. I don’t know where we are even going exactly.

The place is just cold, dirty, and horrendous. Some of the things people say, is just horrible like, “The place is way too shabby” or “I am hungry”, be happy you are alive.

Hope you are well and thank you for writing to me. I send my wishes to you. Write to me soon.

Hope me the best,


Walrus And The Carpenter

Trust may help, but to much trust may be risky, especially when it comes to strangers. Staying in your comfort zone is good. If they seem shady, do not trust them. For example: in “The Walrus and the Carpenter”, Lewis Carroll emphasizes the theme of not trusting strangers by using personification and pathos.

Carroll uses personification to make everything seem real and make his message easier for children. He uses personification to describe the sun shining, gleaming happily, and making the beach very welcoming. When Carroll describes the sun, he states, “The sun was shining on the sea/ Shining with all his might” (1-2). Carroll makes the world seem friendly and safe, much like a childrens cartoon. This matters because he is making the world safer than what it really is by saying that it is welcoming with the sun shining so bright. It means that some things are just a little too good to be true. This makes the poem more attractive to children, because kids can be tricked.

Carroll also uses pathos to make the Oysters feel safe, makes the Walrus seem welcoming. This makes the message more emphasized. When Carroll states, “I weep for you/ I deeply sympathize”(97-98). When the Walrus states this, it is pathos, because he is showing that he “cares” but he really does not- he is really just being melodramatic about how he feels and is exaggerating how he “deeply sympathizes”. The fact that the Oysters are tricked shows that they are naive like children. This emphasizes the theme because children can be too trusting. This matters because if these Oysters are very naive like children, then that means in the real world, children trusting strangers too much is dangerous.

In conclusion, this poem, The Walrus and The carpenter, is saying to not trust strangers. This poem is also trying to say not everything is as it seems. Carroll uses personification to make the poem sound fun and pathos to make the Walrus to sound generous. This is so important to the real world, because trust may help but to much is risky.

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