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Sponsors of Literacy - Draft 2

Sponsors of Literacy - Draft 2

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Published by Nichole Buchanan

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Published by: Nichole Buchanan on Dec 07, 2010
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 Nichole Buchanan Buchanan 1Professor Jan RiemanEnglish 1103September 14, 2010
Self-assessment: I don’t really think this is one of the strongest papers I’ve written. It wasdifficult to really expand on how I gained literacy. I feel there could have been a lot moreinteresting things I could have included, but I couldn’t really think of anything that really stood out in my literacy history. I feel as thought it was well structured, but I had trouble putting what I wanted to say in words.
My Path to LiteracyLooking back and remembering how I learned to read and write, I think, “Well,that’s obvious. I went to school of course.” But digging deeper and trying to find the realsource of my literacy, who or what exactly taught me and supported me to read and writeand apply that knowledge elsewhere? Those people or objects are known as my sponsorsof literacy. Sponsors of literacy are “any agents, local or distant, concrete or abstract, whoenable, support, teach, model, as well as recruit, regulate, suppress, or withhold literacy-and gain advantage by it in some way” (Brandt 407). I’ve had access to literacy for aslong as I can remember with many supporters along the way.Early in my life, my parents had always been my main supporters. They boughtme books, computer games, Hooked on Phonics workbooks, and anything else you canthink of to teach me to read and write before I even started school. I remember as a childhaving numerous books. Even when I didn’t exactly know how to
Buchanan 2read, I would pick up a book and make up stories from what I saw in the pictures. Little by little, I could eventually make out a few words and before I knew it, I was readingentire books. I was so excited about learning to read, that I read anything and everything Icould get my hands on. Riding in the car, I would read out loud all the signs and billboards we drove past. I read so much, I’m sure my parents were beginning to getannoyed. Even if it was a little irritating, they never discouraged it. I remember playingcomputer games called “Jump Start” that had spelling games and made learning evenmore fun. One of my favorite games in the Jump Start series was a cooking game. I wasto read the ingredients and cooking directions and create a dish within the given time. By playing that game, I learned how to read measurement abbreviations. I used thatknowledge of learning to read cooking directions and measure out ingredients to help mymother cook meals in real life. My parents also supplied me with plenty of workbooksthat taught me how to spell out words and use them correctly in sentences. I think I founda lot more enjoyment out of reading and writing than most children my age. I was just sofascinated with books and eager to learn how to read at a very young age and I think Iowe that to my parents, who where constantly there to support me and provide me withaccess to books and learning devices.Although my parents were my main supporters, my teachers in school were amajor part of my literacy as well. As I moved from school to school over the years, eachschool provided me with access to a library full of books and computers. There weredesignated days each week where we would go to the library and computer lab as a class.We kept a reading log where we took note of what we read and how long we read for 
Buchanan 3each night. There were so many choices of what we could read and we were encouragedto read anything we could such as: books, poems, magazines, newspapers, online articles,etc. We were also expected to write a short story or response daily. Usually we weregiven a prompt or on other occasions we could write about anything we wanted. Inelementary school, my writing skills began to develop. Sometimes the prompt would be alittle boring, so without even realizing what I was doing I experimented with fabricatingmy writing a little. Accelerated Reader was a program most of the schools I went to participated in. Students were required to read books on a point system based ondifficulty and how well you did on quizzes after the book was completed. As your pointsadded up, there were different rewards given to students that met certain point ranges.This reward system encouraged students in a fun way to read more and challenge them toread difficult books.As I reached high school, reading and writing wasn’t as much fun as it used to be.We began having to read specific books not by choice, that I highly doubt any of my peers would have picked up and read in their leisure time either. Reading became more of a chore rather than something enjoyable. This is where my pleasure of reading andwriting went downhill. Everything was so structured and there was little room for creativity. We weren’t assigned to write imaginative stories anymore. Instead, everythingwas to be written as a formal essay, which is definitely no fun at all. Throughout highschool, the only escape I had from this bland, structured writing was a creative writingclass I took my sophomore year. I had a wonderful teacher, who pushed us to writeoutside of how we were so accustomed to writing. She inspired me to find my love for 

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