Monday, April 20, 2009

Easy to pass or not?

College life, very exciting. It is a whole new world of people trying to move on to the next step, whatever it may be. The social aspect is always interesting because there is such a group of diverse people. The part we all dread is the academic classes. In order to get any degree or to even graduate from TCC, a person has to pass certain classes. English 111 is one of those courses.

My first day was kind of unusual. This being my first semester in college at TCC, I did not know where any of my classes were. Class started at 11 am and around 11:30 I still had not found my English class. Finally entering the classroom, Mr. Gasparo greeted me with much enthusiam. The class was very full and here I started on my wonderful journey into English 111.

My first impression of Mr. Gasparo was he was very laid back. He is a New Yorker so I figured he would be kind of abrasive. However he did not seem that way at all. The first class period was kind of like being in a foreign country. I could understand what was going on but it was very new and different to me. As Mr.Gasparo explained what he expected of us, he also told us how most of the course assignments are found on the internet. Myself being computer illiterate, I was nervous about this. In high school nothing was really done on the internet but in college, everything is done online. Going through this course I realized I had to become familiar with computers because if a student doesn’t look up their work online, nobody will tell them when it’s due. Anytime an assignment was due, and people did not have it to turn in, Mr. Gasparo would say: Didn’t you check the syllabus online?

Throughout the last 16 weeks, I have written many papers. It seems that is mainly all I did do. We would get assigned one paper and next thing we know Mr. Gasparo is talking about a new paper that is due in a week. I am kind of glad about this because being out of school for almost three years I feel I have forgotten some writing tools. I love to write and taking English 111 with Mr. Gasparo has got me back on track. I also enjoyed the topics he would pick us to write about. They were intriguing and allowed a person to be creative. For example, the first essay we were assigned to write was the Diagnostic Essay. We could pick a superpower to have and write about it. This allowed us to use our imagination and I really liked that.

A main plus about Mr. Gasparo was he gave people a second chance. We were assigned an essay to do on a restaurant and we would have to critique it. I thought I did a pretty good job on the paper but sadly I received a C on it. Never in my life have I received a C on an English paper so I was very upset about this. When I looked at the comments Mr.Gasparo wrote on my paper, they were all simple mistakes. He arranged a meeting with me and we discussed what I could do to make my writing better. I was able to rewrite my paper and received a B on it the second time around. I am glad Mr.Gasparo was so helpful and it showed me he was really concerned about me becoming a better writer opposed to other teachers who would not have made the effort to help me.

In conclusion, I enjoyed my experience in English 111. I definitely improved my writing skills and even learned some new writing tools. I never before had even heard of the rhetorical appeals, logos, pathos, and ethos. However, using these terms in a paper helps explain the topic in much more detail. If I were to recommend Mr. Gasparo to other students, I would definitely have positive things to say. I just hope my next English experience is just as beneficial.

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