Lindsay N.

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?

Over the 7th-Grade year I think that I have improved a lot in writing.  The detail that I include in my writing changes to make the papers more interesting.  I also think that I am being more careful in choosing topic so that I will have a lot to say about the topic

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

One of my writing strengths this year was attention to detail.  I realized that writing is so much better when  there is important and strong details included.  Another strength I have is

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

I want to develop the skill of collecting information to make my points and details even stronger.  To do this I will have to become a better researcher and pay attention to all the details in articles or other papers.  I also need to work on

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

I choose my Hero's Journey Essay because I thought that it is a good example of how I have grown over this year.  During this essay I did a good job collecting research and giving good detail.  I learned a lot during this essay and worked very hard on it.

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

This year I was most proud of my Holocoust final letter.  This was a new type of writing experience for me and I think I did very well.  This was my first essay in a more lose format, you had more room for creativity.  

Artifact #1

Hero’s Journey Essay

In all stories there is a hero that has to be brave even in the hardest of times. Ponyboy, the main character in The Outsiders goes through many hardships and has to learn to overcome them. Ponyboy lives with his gang, the Greasers, made up of friends and family in a rough area of Tulsa, Oklahoma alongside their rival gang, the Socs. Ponyboy and a friend get into trouble and they have to runway, as a result he is changed forever. The Outsiders by S.E Hinton is a Monomyth because Pony experiences all the stages of the Heros Journey.

Ponyboy experiences The Return to Everyday Life when he wakes up from his concussion and has a new perspective on life. Ponyboy is given a letter written by his best friend Johnny shortly before Johnny dies. Ponyboy reads in Johnny’s letter, “Like the way you dig sunsets. Thats gold. Keep that way. It is a good way to be” (178). In the Hero’s Journey, The Return to Everyday Life is when the hero comes back to his/ her normal life and usually returns with a gift and discovers a new thing about himself after experiencing the Journey. In The Outsiders, Pony’s Return to Everyday Life starts when he and Johnny come back home. When he reads Johnny’s letter he realizes he has a gift, which is different from the Greasers and everyone else. His gift is that he appreciates the little things and has a different point of view than others. Pony stands out among his friends, and he knows how to appreciate his gift. His gift makes him different from everyone else, he is gold and still innocent but has mature ideas and smarts. Johhny also tells him the he is very smart and has opportunities that the other Greases do not have. Because of this Pony has the chance to lead a different, and possibly a better life from what he is use to.

In conclusion, The Outsider is an example of a Monomyth because the main character follows all of the steps of the Hero’s Journey. In all four of the main events of The Outsiders Ponyboy has to show bravery even in difficult times. Throughout the book S.E. Hinton is showing us that not everybody has it as easy as it seems, and everybody faces challenges not matter how rich or poor they are.

Artifact #2

Dear Aaron,

Things are getting worse. My dad’s hardware store was taken over a few days ago by the Natzis.

“I asked my dad why he did not fight back.” He replied, “The Natzis have to much power to fight back.”

My friends dad was imprisoned last night because while the riot was going on he tried to go protect his stuff, but instead he was captured and taken away to to work camp, at least that is what my brother said.

I heard my parents talking last night.

They said, “Now that I have lost my job we have no chance of escaping, with the high prices of finding a way to get out of Europe.”

I was unaware that we were thinking about leaving, but I knew it was an option for other jews, one of my friends had fled and a few days before this terrible thing, had happened, Kristallnacht.

My father had lost his business before Kristallnacht, but he was still not done cleaning out his shop when the huge riot took place. Things were stolen, smashed, crushed, and destroyed. Our family had lost some of our most valuable items and a HUGE source of income. We were devastated, most of our money was gone.

My most prized possession, my porcelain doll named Molly was ruined. My parents tried to hide what was going on around Europe from me and my brother. But it was obvious when my dad returned from trying to salvage anything from the store. The head what smashed into tiny pieces, the fancy pink dress was ripped, and the body was broken half. After I discovered what had happened I cried for hours.

I am losing hope and realizing that I am gaining more responsibility. Hopefully things get better.

Sincerely, Ester

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