May 2009 Archives
I really enjoyed creating and presenting the term project for this class. Although it required a lot of time and effort, I enjoyed working with Greta and I think it became an experience that both of us learned a lot from. Teaching a lesson to a tenth grade class was a real eye opener. Going into it, I was nervous because I was worried I was absolutely going to hate it. I loved working with the students, but I still don't feel completely sure about it.
The peer review project in class really helped me with my research paper. I felt like I had a bunch of ideas but no way to connect them all together in order to create a twenty page paper. Greta and Derek were especially helpful with their suggestions. I wish we would have had something similar, yet shorter, earlier in the course when each of us were trying to create our thesis. Personally, I know an activity like that would have helped me to find a right direction way earlier than what I did.
Since January, I felt as if I have learned a lot, although about a third of it has nothing to do with literary criticism. First of all, I learned I was way over my head in this class. Second, looking back on the course, I would have approached it differently. At the beginning, I worked on this course almost non stop, as well as other courses. I never really worked many breaks into my schedule. By the time the end of April rolled around, I was completely burnt out. I have learned now that not only is it ok to take breaks, but necessary in order to do well. I always felt bad taking a few hours a week to just relax because it felt like I was letting my work pile up on me, but I ended up shutting down at the wrong time of the year. Another important lesson I learned this semester was how to ask for help, especially from Greta who bailed me out more than once. I always hated asking for help mainly because I hate to bother people and also because I usually just assume that I'll be able to figure it out on my own eventually. However, I realized by the end of the semester that unless I asked for help, I was going to completely crash and burn.
I think after taking this class that other English classes won't be as challenging as they might have been had I not taken this class before them.
I thought everyone did a great job with their projects. They were all creative and I think they were a really good chance for us to pick something we were interested in and connect what we have learned to it.
Sue and Quinn's project was hilarious. They did a great job taking something dry and serious and turning it into something that was enjoyable. I think it was also creative on their parts because instead of standing up and having to explain everything like the rest of us did with our projects, they actually performed their project in front of us.
I think Kaylee and Maura's project was interesting because it applied lit crit to a series of children's books. Since there were several of us in this class who were taking Literature for Young Adults at the same time, I think most of us really appreciated their perspective on this type of literature.
It was obvious to see how much hard work Angela and Derek put into their project. Not only did the project bring in some of their interests outside of class, but they really made it unique by dressing up as the main characters. And, I don't think I would have been able to stand sitting through the entire class with that much make up on so they should get bonus just for that :).
Bethany and Ellen's project was a more in depth extension of what Ellen had us to for our presenation. This was a good idea because since we had experienced a little of applying literary criticism to fairy tales, we could easily understand and relate to what they were explaining.
Michelle and James's project brought up some interesting topics by taking a look at some song lyrics. I think we had a good discussion from their project and I thought it was great that they touched on some topics that not everyone may have been comfortable with.
Erica and Jenna's project also combined literary criticism with some of their interests. Their explanation of the project was very clear and their "movie" at the end was really funny.
Overall, I really enjoyed seeing everyone else's projects because they were so creative and had a wide variety of topics. Not only was it an opportunity for everyone to apply and show what they have learned this year, but it also allowed us to show the class some of our other interests as well.