Monday, October 31, 2011

Midterm Reflection

For the most part I think I am the same person I was before college. However the biggest difference for me is that I work much harder now than I did last year at this time. I have a higher priority on my grades now than I ever had before.
In high school I was never the hardest worker to be honest. I procrastinated all of the time. I almost never did homework outside of school, instead I usually did it in math class. Overall I do not think my high school did a good job in preparing me for college. Nobody ever called me out on my bad habits except for my parents but I did not take their advice seriously. After all, I was getting by with As, Bs, and Cs so what was the point to do anything differently?
After I arrived at college, I soon found out that my old high school habits would not fly in college. I really started out not so well but I slowly have been pulling up my grades. I have started to get the hang of things lately and now take my work more serious than ever.
My interests have been all pretty much the same thus far in college as they were last time. I still love sports and chillin' with my friends and I do not think that will ever change. I am glad college has made me a harder worker in school and hopefully my positive recent trends will continue to get better and better throughout my college career.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Rosa Lee Pages 172-248 Response

I thought this was a very informative book. Many of the habits that Rosa Lee and Patty had in the beginning of the story still were reoccuring in this section. I was always aware of the families like Rosa Lee's but I never knew what day to day life was like for families like hers. At times the book made me depressed because Rosa Lee and her family showed no signs of hope at times but I did enjoy the way the book ended, however.
One thing that really stood out to me was how Rosa Lee began prostituting Patty. The author brought the subject up multiple times but it took years for Rosa Lee to actually talk about it with him. It just hard for me to imagine how a mother could do that to her daughter. For her to introduce Patty to drugs it one thing but for some reason I find that prostituting her own daughter even more disturbing. Rosa Lee also brought home men and would sleep with them in the same bed Patty slept in at such a young age.
At the end of the book Rosa Lee seams more of a changed person. Bobby came home at the end and the book goes on to say he died of AIDS a few days later at the house. Patty was also arrested for murder. These two event were really a wake up call to Rosa Lee. She has been taking care of her new great-grandson and the book ends by Rosa Lee taking care of her great-grandson the right way. At Bobby's funeral she talks about how she did not do a good job raising her kids and that she was truly sorry. This is the first time I think she truly was sorry and a turning point in her life.
The quote that stood out to me was "But then, Rosa Lee is not the same women when we first met". I like this quote becasue the author also was able to recognize a change and Rosa Lee.

Monday, October 10, 2011

First Experience

I had a very unique forst experience at the learning center for our first real service learning experience. I was similar to what I expected in some ways but different in others. Overall I had a very positive learning experience and it felt really good to help out others.
When we first arrived we sat down at individual tables and a few learners were already there. Mark went over things that we learned in training as more learners arrived. All of the learners there were women. Mark started to call out the tutors names and assign each of us with a learner. I was assigned a man that was not there and he did not show up either! Mark said to work on school work and said he was sorry that my learner was not there. I had mixed emotions because I was so nervous going in and now I found out that I was not going to have a learner this week. I really just wanted to have one like everyone else to get the experience of tutoring under my belt so I did not have to get all nervous again next week.
At around 5:30 I started to get bored playing computer games when a younger lady walked in. Mark called me over and I started working with this girl. She was really nice but kind of shy so I just made small talk with her for the first few minutes or so. She is from Africa and lived for a while down south but has been living in Philadelphia for a few years. She has a younger brother who plays football in middle school. I told her how I used to play football but do not anymore and she wondered why I stopped because she knows that football players make so much money. I said I was never that good and she and I both laughed.
My learner then went over what goals she had. She wants to get her GED and was very close to graduating high school but never could pass math. She said math was the main thing she wanted to improve on. We started doing basic reading skills and she already was a pretty good reader. I just had to help her with a few words she stumbled on. We mainly focused on math this week thought because that is what she really wanted to get better at. We did times tables 2-4 and she struggled with some of it but I gave her hints of ways to remember the problems and she was able to recognize her mistakes when we went over the problems. We also worked on some basic division and worked on adding numbers. I had to help a lot with division and almost had to reteach it to myself. She was very good at addition however, so we moved on to adding decimals which she also did well. We touched on subtraction, fractions, and percentages which we will do more of next time. I gave her some homework problems, around thirty or so, for her to work on for next week.
The hardest part of the lesson was that she was unsure of what she wanted to do so I had to make up math problems to do and pretty much run the lesson. I gave her some ideas of things to bring in if she would like to work on next week. I think each week will get easier and easier and it is really a great thing we are doing. I felt feeling really tired but felt good because I know we were helping people out. We were not going to have another lesson for the next few weeks because the center is closed for Columbus Day and we have fall break next week but I an really looking forward to next time!