In the past 2 years, I’ve learned a lot in this course. I believe I’ve improved as a writer and critical thinker as I’ve strengthened past skills and acquired new ones. We read numerous literary works, ranging from graphic novels to autobiographical novels, to plays, to poems, and classics like The Odyssey. Exposure to such a variety, I was able to familiarize myself with different text types and notice their distinct features. We also wrote analyses and did oral presentations. Through these practices, I learned how to balance quality with quantity, compare literary with non-literary works in a balanced manner, and relate works to a global issue. American Born Chinese was my favorite out of the literary works we’ve read. Living in a westernized environment as a Chinese teenager made me relate to the protagonist on a deeper level, so I really enjoyed working on this text.
Although this course can be grueling, the brighter times always overshadow the difficult ones. Due to Covid-19, we were not able to communicate in person, collaborate freely, and present and engage with peers in front of the class. And this brought challenges. I missed the easiness of connecting with peers and focusing purely on the task at hand. Online learning created difficulties involving internet connection and sidetracking, which not only affected the individual but also hindered the learning of everyone and disrupted the flow of the class. Despite such challenges, I’m happy to say that we made it through and were fortunate enough to return back to in-person classes. I will miss the supportive atmosphere of this class and working with my table group. We help each other in and out of class in understanding texts and keep class time fun and interesting.
I will always remember the weeks building up to our final IO. While we all knew we were well prepared and ready, the anxiousness would not subside. I will always remember seeing everyone frantically look for two texts they haven’t used before, thinking of a global issue and topic uniquely my own, and of course, the nervousness of going into the actual IO. Doing the IO has pushed me to look at texts from a larger perspective, and acquire organization skills.