This is a unit I enjoyed a lot because it introduced me to a lot of new things that I would even enjoy doing in my free time. I got to know the Ellen show, the Daily Show, Ali Wong and really ‘enjoyed’ a poem for the first time. During this unit, I have learned a lot about humor from both the confusions journal and the poem CER. To be more specific, I learned how writers use language to create a humorous effect: Wit, Incongruity, Slapstick humor, and Irony.
Wit is about having a good and quick sense of humor, which is usually being smart and reacting fast to the audience. For example, when Trevor Noah misheard the word work as walk, he used witty humor and got out of a supposedly awkward situation, “Oh sh*t, did you say work? And I thought that’s one hell of a journey my friend.” Incongruity is when things don’t match how they’re supposed to be, and that moment when the audience realizes the incongruity between things, humor is perceived. For example, in the poem Workshop I selected, incongruity humor is applied when the shift in setting from a military base to a quiet garden doesn’t make sense, and that incongruity between the settings produces humor. Slapstick humor is when practical jokes, clumsiness, and embarrassing actions occur, an example would be Lucy’s frenetic running around at the start of the play ‘Mother Figure’. Finally, there are 3 types of irony, verbal irony, dramatic irony, and situational irony. Verbal irony is when someone says the opposite of what they think, and usually for sarcasm, and this could be found when Trever talks about how Trump is being such a ‘great’ president. Dramatic irony is when the audience watching the play knows something characters don’t. Situational irony is when something the opposite of what you think happened. For example, in ‘Lamb to the Slaughter’, no one expected Mary to be the final cold-blooded killer. That could be used as humor when the audience realizes that things are actually not what they think it is.
Something that I would want to learn more about this topic is that what makes humor humorous? And why are the techniques funny? This is always something I’ve struggled in explaining because we didn’t get to learn what causes these things to be funny. I mean, I could by far identify the technique used, and also spot the humorous parts but for example, why does dramatic irony contribute to a humorous tone? Maybe we didn’t learn this because it might have some science and phycology involved, but I think it could be pretty interesting to know.
“My SMART goal for this unit is to be responsible by always making my deadlines on time, and while being on time, also have quality work and reach the mastering section.”
I cannot determine entirely if I met my SMART goal right now because one of the goals was to achieve mastering, hopefully, I do. What I could determine is that I was responsible for meeting all my deadlines on time, and also worked my hardest to reach quality work.
I think something challenging for me about this unit is the deadlines. I had to constantly remind myself about when to turn in the work, and sometimes I even finish it a few days before it is due in case something happens, and I forget. This is different to other assignments since I don’t get notifications about deadlines anymore from my phone (I have the DX app). Another challenge for me is that plays and poems weren’t something I would do in my free time, and it takes me to watch the plays and read the poems over and over again to fully understand it. For example, I watched ‘Mother Figure 4 times to fully get what the author was trying to communicate. The last challenge I faced was that I was confused when analyzing the play. When I analyzed the play, I focused more on the message of the author, and the literary techniques, and I was very much wrong to do that because we’re supposed to focus more on humor. Because of this confusion I had, I did things that didn’t address the topic and missed things that I was supposed to include (really should’ve read the directions clearly).
A success I had in this unit is that, as mentioned before, it sparked my interest in humor, talk shows, and poem. While reading the poem Workshop, I was really confused that first, but after reading and annotating it for so many times, I finally understood what the main theme and story were about, and I felt accomplished when I did, it was a nice feeling (sorry, this is actually the first time I really enjoyed a poem). Maybe it’s just I don’t read poems a lot so I’m slow at interpreting the message, but I didn’t even notice that Billy Collins was writing about his experience at a workshop the first few times I went over it.
I think my SAL of responsibility is meeting. This is because I completed all my assignments before the deadline, I proactively seek feedback by sending emails, and attended every zoom meeting. But I think I’m a bit weak in my organization section, as I didn’t carefully read the instructions which caused me extra work but a worse product. I think my SAL of attitude is exemplary because I go ‘full send’ in all of my assignments. I take initiatives for my own learning and I also persevere when I encounter a challenge, the poem, for example.
What I need to improve on in terms of SAL, is my organization, in responsibility. As I mentioned, I didn’t read the instructions carefully, and I tend to forget the things mentioned in the zoom quite easily. To learn more efficiently, I think it would be important for me to get my organization up.
I don’t really know what specifically is in English 10, but here are some broad things that I would want to improve in: Public Speaking, Persuasive Writing, and Discussions. I really need to improve my public speaking because I get really nervous before it, I’m really not confident talking in front of others, and I literally have no eye contact. Areas I want to improve for my persuasive writing is how to revise a draft. After I’m done with a draft, it’s basically my final. I don’t know what to revise and can’t spot my own mistakes even when reading it several times, but then when I receive the grades and feedback, I suddenly understand. Finally, I want to improve in my discussion skills, mainly for Socratic seminars. My reactions to what others say and the ability to create a fast response is really not good; I mostly depend on my notes and need time to think before I talk. So, to sum it up, I think I had a pretty successful and fun year in English, and I’m looking forward to grade 10.