Friday, January 17, 2014

Semester in Review (Reflection)

Dear reader,

This year has been the best year for me as a writer. I always thought that my writing had peaked last year during American Studies class, but continues to improve.  I guess it's because I didn't give up on myself, or settle for the skills I already had. I found it was better and easy to write if I didn't let anything distract me. If I can just get into my zone, where it's just me and a blank piece of paper, I can produce some of my best writing. I chose my two best writing pieces to discuss. They are not chosen based on what I received for a grade, because when your a writer, only you can tell which piece is good or bad. I chose the two pieces that I was most impressed with.

The first piece I included was my college essay. It took me a couple tries to finally write a college essay that I thought was good enough to submit, but when I finally got it, I was sure I nailed it. First of all, it's always a good sign when you come out of the writing center and the only thing you were asked to change was two sentences. About this time last year I would of left the writing center with more red ink thank black. I wrote the essay about the time I went to summer camp for almost the whole summer. It was easy for me because that was a summer I could never forget.

The second piece I chose was my Personality Profile. I was impressed with that piece because going into it, I didn't think I was going to do very well, but ended up with a brood outcome. I wrote about how my sister Heather who is on her first year of teaching. The personality profile was important to me because it was nice to sit down and interview my sister. My sister is very passionate about teaching, so it made writing the article easier.

This year I have improved as a writer so much already, and I can't wait to see how much better I can get. I don't know how much writing I am going to do in the future, but the skills I have learned in this class will stay with me forever.  

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Personality profile

After being asked "What do you you want to do when you grow up?" I always think about the endless opportunities I have as a senior in high school. Every couple of weeks I change my mind as to what I want to do after high school. I have thought about going into the military, making candles, and even being a veterinary. As I am finishing up my senior year, I have been narrowing down my choices. After seeing my Sister take the steps to becoming a teacher, I have become more and more interested in her career path. I sat down with my sister, Heather Cimellaro, a teacher at Lyman Moore in Portland this past weekend and talked about life as a teacher. I started the interview by asking the obvious question, "How long have you wanted to be a teacher?". She didn't even have to think about the answer. "I had thoughts about it all through high school, but I never thought that I would be able to do it.". Heather graduated from Freeport High School eight years ago. She attended a art school for a couple years but decided that art was more of a hobby. After leaving the art school, she attended college at the University of Southern Maine for four years. I asked her what kind of teacher she wanted to be, a cool teacher, or a strict teacher. She answered the question with "Of course I want my students to like me, but I also want them to respect me.".  I then asked her what school she would choose to teach at if she had the choice. "Even if I could choose any school, I think I would still want to teach at Lyman Moore. I really like the other teachers, and I love the students too!". I followed the question with "What is your absolute favorite thing about Lyman Moore?". Like all of the other questions, she answered it instantly. "I love the diversity, I have students from all over the world, from Iraq to Mexico, it's great!". That's really great to hear from a teacher I thought. The subject changed a little when I asked her if she wanted to teach high school. "I'm not quite sure yet, I teach sixth grade social studies, and I love it. Teaching high school would be a lot different. Maybe someday, but right now I'm fine where I am.". We talked more about teaching, and some of her students, but then got right back to business. "What steps did you have to take to become a teacher?" I asked. "It was a lot easier than I thought it would be, don't get me wrong, it's a lot of work, but it was fun and definitely worth it." She then told me step by step what she had to do to become a teacher. She had to get her bachelors degree, major in history, and go through the Etep program. She told me again, "Definitely worth it.". I switched gears a little by asking her if she thought teachers made enough money. "Who wouldn't want to make more money" she chuckled "the only thing that I feel like teachers don't get enough of is respect.". I thought about what she said, and I had to agree. In my option, teachers practically raise the country's youth. I shared this thought with her and she made a teachers pet joke, we had a good laugh. As the interview reached an end, I thanked her and we went on our separate ways

College Essay

I have never thought of myself as either mature or immature. When I see underclassmen gossiping throughout the school, or making childish jokes to one another, I feel like the word mature is branded on my forehead. When I look in the other direction, I see students who seem to already know what they are doing with their life, and I feel like I should be back gossiping with the underclassmen. I guess that would put me right in the middle. Some people come back from mission trips to Africa, claiming that it matured them, changed their life, or made them better people. I am not like those people.
I guess if any one life event could mature me, it would be the summer of 2009. I had just completed eighth grade and was terrified of high school. All I had was two and a half months separating me from what I thought was sudden death. I got a letter in the mail from camp O-AT-KA, an all boys summer camp that I had attended the last five years before that. I normally went for one week out of the summer because that was the week they offered to boys from Maine for free. When I opened the letter, I was expecting to see the normal health form and item checklist I was used to seeing, but this letter was different. The camp had invited me to attended a full semester (half of the summer) instead of the usual one week on full scholarship. I didn't have to think long about it, and next thing I knew I was off to summer camp for half of my vacation.
Upon my arrival to the camp, I realized things were different. The kids who attended the camp were from all over the world. There were kids from parts of Europe, Asia, South America, and even Australia. I had always been used to seeing kids from different parts of Maine, not different parts of the world. Another thing that was different about these kids was that they were all very wealthy. That was a big difference, because every one who attended the free week was from a low income family. I could already tell this year was going to be different.
The camp started off early morning. 6:00 to be exact. I was surprised that we were up that early, because normally camp started at 8:00. That was one of many changes. The camp was just like school. Instead of going swimming whenever you wanted or play frisbee all day like I was used to, I found myself signing up for classes like woodworking and music. Every day was so different than what I was used to. I ended up earning "camp credit" from doing jobs around the camp that were similar to community service. Every camper was given "book credits" they could use at the camp store or the book fair. We were taught to trade in our "camp credit" for everything from toiletries and clothing to candy and magazines.
It took some time to get used to the way of life at camp O-AT-KA, but I eventually adapted. Before I knew it, I was acting like an adult, and I didn't even realize it. My parents were shocked on the parent visit day when they saw me with my tucked in polo shirt, and even more surprised when I asked if they would take me to get my hair cut.
Maturity isn't something that just happens overnight, it takes time. You can't expect something to  make you more mature. I was expecting to have a summer of lounging around the lake, instead I learned many skills I will remember and value for the rest of my life.  

Monday, December 16, 2013

Instagram

I used to use Instagram, but I was kind of tierd of seeing Black and white Starbucks cups. So when I forgot my password, I didn't really go looking for it. I agree with the article, the main thing people do on Instagram is say "Look what I have" through the use of edited pictures.

I think some people put way too much effort into those photos, and I know that for a fact, because I have done it before. It's not something I liked to do, it just came naturally after seeing all of the other posts.

I don't look forward to events because if Instagram, I look forward to them if they sound fun.

I think you should post trophies on Instagram, because sometimes trophies are cool, and that's why people go on Instagram, is to see cool things.

Opening Moment

School shooting in Colorado

A student went in his school with a shotgun because he wanted to kill his teacher for banning him from debate.

The kid shot many rounds, but only one was aimed at another student, who is now in critical condition.

The shooter set off multiple molatav cocktails before taking his own life in the library.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Mo' life Mo' problems

Trying to make old people live longer is one of the worst ideas I have ever heard, especially when the planet is having population control issues. New people are born, old people die, that's how it works, that's life. Scientist shouldn't be messing that up because it's a pretty good system. As people get older they get less useful until they become immobile bodies spending way too much money in medicine. My grandmother is the perfect example, she can't do anything and she is constantly taking medicine for things she has never heard of. At least she has the right mindset about it, she's waiting to pass on naturally, and I respect that. If I were to offer her a pill that would make her live even longer, she would laugh and refuse to take it. I don't know why people want to spend a ton of money on research to make people live longer, I think it's great that they are looking for cures for diseases, keep that up, but don't try to make the average life span pass 100, that's messed up.


If I could choose my life span, I would say 40 is fine by me. I don't plan on having a wife or kids so that would be perfect, however, if I do end up stuck with a family, I would at least want to live until my kids graduate college. I see old people every day, that's not the life for me. I'm not saying that every old person has a horrible life, but I just don't see the glamour in filling my body with pounds of medicine just so I can go play bingo with my pals. We live, we die, it happens.  

Friday, November 8, 2013

Pranks Are Funny

I think that a prank can cross the line into bullying before it even happens. If you are pranking someone with a prank that you are sure won't offend or harm them, it's just a prank. If you are trying to harm them or make them feel bad, then that's bullying. Sometimes people accidentally take things to dark but it is forgivable if they started with food intentions and did not mean to do so. Sometimes people overreact about pranks, but as long as you weren't trying to upset them , I think it's fine.




I think pranks are pretty funny, but sometimes they do get out of hand. We used to prank each other in the locker room every day after gym class. It got so out of hand at one point, everybody had to hide there belongings, just to make sure nobody messed with it. Every day was the same thing, but it was all fun and games. Sometimes it got a little out of control, but nothing more than a little bit of wrestling. One day it did go too far though, and the "joke" was on me. I walked in on the other kids hiding my stuff, and as I tried to get some of it back they tossed it back and fourth around the room. Then one kid tried to pull my backpack out of the locker and ripped the whole thing wide open. A brand new expensive backpack. As I ran at him, he then knocked over my laptop that he had already taken out of my backpack and broke it. I wouldn't consider that bullying, but that was a prank that got way out of hand and ended with a cost.




Another locker room prank that got out of hand was when one student put a condom that looked like it had been used on top of another students backpack. The two students got in a heated debated after that, because they already had beef, but the prank broke out into a fistfight that eventually had to be broken up so nobody got in trouble.