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Literacy Narrative
Molly Ryan
UWRT 1102
02/ 18/15
Work shopping:
1. Rebecca Bishop
2. Make your introductory paragraph clearer, grammar mistakes; elaborate more
about your father and mother having an impact on your reading and writing
(you say that they impact you but you do not say how they impacted you),
overall good transitions.
3. I went through my paper and I took basically all of the suggestions that my
partner suggested. I made my introductory paragraph go into a little more
detail that I had, I corrected all the grammar mistakes that my partner found, I
also went into more detail about why my parents had an impact on my reading
and writing. All the suggestions that my partner made benefited me and I went
back and changed them.
4. My partner provided okay feedback. She did not correct/suggest many things
but the things she did suggest were good points.
Reading and writing is a huge part of a persons life. Reading traffic signs,
reading a menu, and singing a contract are all a part of daily life that requires a person to
have decent reading and writing skills. To develop literacy a person has to grow up and
go through certain events in their life where they learn to read or write. In Everythings a
Text, Whats I Got to Do with It? Personal Literacies in the Writing Classroom, Amy
Hodges Hamilton states: Writing is a complex, multi layered process that can include

both the personal and the academic. This means that ever person has their own type of
culture of literacy that shapes how they read and write. Overall, everyone has learned a
different way to read and write that has impacted literacy today.
Reading and writing has always been such a large part of my life that I do not
remember a time that I could not read or write. Did I just magically wake up one morning
able to read and write? No, I learned to read and write through a long process beginning
at a young age. I first remember my parents reading to me when I was about three years
old. Every night my mother would put me to bed and read books by James Harriet, who
was a vet that wrote about his profession. These books were filled with funny stories
about animals. I have always had a love for animals, and these books made me want to
become a vet. My mother then began to read me other books about animals and that
triggered my passion for helping animals (today I still care for animals although I do not
want to become a vet). My father also had a huge impact on my reading and writing.
Every Sunday night, while my mother was at work, my dad would read me Winnie the
Pooh, in a strange voice, before I went to bed. It is stated in Everythings a Text, A
composers persona includes the stance she takes, her voice, the vocabulary she uses, her
voice style everything that makes up the image she portrays in her text. By my father
reading in a strange voice he made an influence on my reading. The strange voice he
would use was his literacy personas that would later impact me later in lie. Also, when
my day was reading to me, I would look at the pictures and then look at the words and try
to memorize them. Because my dad read these books so many times to me, I began to
memorize these books and was able to read them on my own. Since I had the ability to

read these books, I started to read them to my younger sister and brother to point that
they started to memorize the books as well.
My parents also helped me learn to read by purchasing a product called Leap Frog
for me in kindergarten. This device was a book that read to you, and it had multiple
stories that taught you how to read. It also had different reading games on it, so it was an
interactive game that helped me learn how to read.
I then got involved in the summer reading program at my library when I was in
elementary school; this program gave out prizes for books that you read. I read various
numbers of books including Judy Bloom in the first grade. Judy Bloom was the first
chapter book I remember reading. I especially enjoyed reading Judy Bloom because we
had similar personalities; so I would go up to my bedroom and every night, my mom
would set the timer for thirty minutes, and I would read Judy Bloom for thirty minutes
each night. I would focus on what the book was talking about and talk about the events
that were happening in Judy Bloom with my mother. I would read this book carefully
making sure that I have read every word and highlighted what I thought was the key
points. It is said in Everythings A Text that: To be a successful reader of the twenty
first century texts, youll need to develop an active reading process. By hichlighting
everything in Judy Bloom I was being an active reader and engaging in the book. By
doing that activity,I got into a routine at a young age that was the foundation of me
learning to read.
In elementary school, I always struggled with reading and pronouncing words.
Because of that, about once a week I went to speech therapy that helped me with
pronouncing my words. I also went to extra help during my English class that went at a

slower pace than that of the other students in my grade which although was embarrassing
at that time, helped me in the end. During the extra help, I would read with someone,
practice writing with them.
In about the second grade, I felt embarrassed about my reading and thought that I
was falling behind in my reading and writing and tried as hard as I could to improve but
failed many times. When I wrote a paper, a person could not comprehend what it was that
I was writing. As the years of my schooling went on, my teachers noticed that I was
having trouble with reading and writing and with much practice my reading and writing
skills still remained poor. My teacher in about the third grade got me tested for dyslexia,
and after much testing it was determined that I had this learning disability. My parents
took me to a tutor twice a week after school that helped me with my reading and writing.
This particular tutor went through notecards with me, helped me write papers, and taught
me to read many books. With the help of that tutor, my reading and writing skills
improved greatly. By the time I entered the fifth grade my reading and writing skills had
improved significantly.
As I entered middle school, I got to read many books of my choice and receive
prizes for reading the books. By getting prizes for reading I wanted to read as many
books as possible. In the sixth grade I began reading the Harry Potter books. Although
everyone in my grade was fascinated about this particular series, I did not really enjoy
reading these books they were not really my taste. All my friends around me loved
these books, so I kept on trying to finish the series but only got through the first four of
the books and then stopped reading them. In seventh grade, the Twilight book series came
out and all the girls in my class were reading them. I started reading the first book and

immediately got attached to them. While I was reading these four books I began to
actually enjoy reading for one of the first times in my life. This gave me the imitative to
find more books like the twilight series. After middle school, I believe that I had the basic
foundation for reading down.
Moving into high school, my reading and writing experience changed. Although I
had a solid base for English, there was a different system used in high school than was
used in middle school. My ninth grade English teacher was strict on grammar and made
sure that we spelt every single word correctly, and did not make any grammar mistakes.
Every day we would come into class and do this assignment called daily grammar
practice, which was a series of sentences that we would have to correct. We also had
countless lessons learning grammar and I would spend many days trying to learn all these
grammar rules. By focusing on my grammar my content in my writing was lacking.
Also in ninth grade English, it was also mandatory to read a serious of books and
then write papers on them. I did not enjoy that at all, since I came from a middle school
that I could pick and choose the books that I got to read and now the books that I read
were chosen for me. Because of this system, I did not particularly enjoy the books that
we read, so I would read them but not really engage in what the book was talking about,
thus, my papers would be poorly written. This change of reading books made me go
from a state of loving to jump in bed every night and read to a state of putting reading off
as long as I could because I did not like the books I was reading. Overall, my ninth grade
experience of English was difficult for me because I struggled with writing papers, lacked
the motivation to read certain books, and with had trouble with grammar.

Going into my tenth grade year of English, I think I learned the most about
English than I ever did in my whole high school career. My teacher really made an
impact on my study skills as well as my reading and writing. In that class, I wrote my
first ever research paper. One of the very first days of class, I was informed that we had to
write a research paper with a partner. Then teacher then began to pair us up and give each
group a topic my topic was teen pregnancy. I was informed that after doing my
research paper, I would have to do a presentation with my partner. This research paper
was actually a struggle for me because both my partner and me had very different types
of writing styles, so writing the paper had its difficulties. Although it was extremely
difficult putting our thoughts together in one paper, we were able to achieve the task.
Because my partner had more experience in writing than me, she also helped me with my
writing skills. Having to write a research paper with someone else impacted my writing
and has made it the way it is today. I also had to present a PowerPoint presentation for
this class to go along with my research paper. Since I was young I have always been a
shy person and unable to present in front of the class for this project I had to present a
seven-minute presentation in front of a room of about thirty people. I did not know how I
was going to be able to achieve that particular goal. I would go home every day and
practice the presentation until I had every word of it memorized and thought that I was
able to present it in front of my entire class. When the day came that I had to present, yes
I was extremely nervous, but despite it all, I went up and presented the presentation with
my partner. Because I had someone to work with, I think it was easier to present since I
was not doing the task alone, but all in all I presented my project. Not only did this
research project expand my writing skills, but it also gave me confidence to do

presentations in front of a group of people. As I look forward in the future, yes, I still get
nervous when presenting in front of people, but I have way more confidence than I had in
high school.
Entering the eleventh grade, I had an English class where we basically focused on
writing prompts for the SAT. My teacher was determined that every single one of us
would do well on the writing portion of the SAT. Each day going to class I was greeted
with a prompt that was a practice SAT prompt. I had to write on the certain topic and then
turn it in for grading. If I did not like the certain grade that I received on the essay, I had
the option of revising my essay and could submit it for re-grading. While I despised
writing an essay each day in class, this activity really helped me prepare for the SAT and
I believe it was because of this class that I did so well on the writing portion of the SAT .
This class also taught me how to write under pressure, which is a useful tool to have in
One of the major pieces of writing that I did was my senior graduation project. I
had to create a research paper on the topic of my choice and then compose a PowerPoint
presentation and present it to the senior class. This presentation was a complex one, the
research paper was done my eleventh grade year and the presentation was presented my
senior year. Since I have always had a passion for running I chose the topic The
History of the Marathon. I began writing this paper, and found many useful resources on
the Internet. I also completed an interview with a personal marathon trainer. When
completing the interview, I asked the marathon trainer a number of questions that I was
curious about and could not find elsewhere. After the research, writing the paper was the
easy part and I was extremely proud of my paper. Going into my senior year, I had to go

back to the research paper that I wrote and make a presentation. I worked long and hard
on this presentation, and it was probably my most valuable piece of literature thus far in
my life. Since I had to write a research paper in the tenth grade with a partner, writing
this research paper, which was worth more points, was fairly easier to complete. I spent
numerous hours writing the research paper itself and making and presenting my
presentation that I made, which makes it my most prized work. Throughout high school I
had many different writing and reading assignments that have made me a better writer
and shaped me into the writer I am today.
Going into UNCC, I took UWRT 1101 with Professor Malcolm Campbell. In this
class I wrote a mini ethnography that I believe is the best piece of literature that I
composed in college. For this paper I observed a group of Resident Advisors in Moore
Hall and took diligent notes on everything they did including what they talked about
what they were wearing, their norms and values, and their culture. Then I went back and
interviewed one of the RAs, asking him a serious of questions that were not answered
while I observed them. After that I went back and took all of my notes and put them into
a paper. This project was interesting and I believe was the first major work that I did as a
college student. Also, this project was rather challenging in my opinion. It was unlike
anything that I have every composed. In Everythings A Text, Situating Academic
Literacies, it is states that academic writing is its own kind of literacy, and that each
academic field has its own ways of thinking, its own genres, and its own conventions. I
agree with this statement and it applies to the mini ethnography that I wrote. The mini
ethnography was a paper extremely different that I have never wrote anything like this
before. I had to use different techniques to master this particular paper; I could not follow

the conventions of writing that I used for any other writing. Moreover, this paper was so
different it took long hours to complete.
As I look back at all the literacy work that I have completed, I think that I have
made decent progress. It is not a secret that I had many struggles with reading and writing
growing up, but I conquered them and made myself a better writer. Because of all my
struggles growing up, I do not like people reading my work because I think people my
age are better writers than me. I never really was a stronger writer, but try to strive to do
better as college goes on. I also make note of the fact that since I am now in college; I am
not going to have all the time in the world to look over all my writing assignments. I
anticipate that I will also have to write things for other classes such as chemistry and
biology and they will not be in the same format as this particular writing class and I will
have to learn how to write scientifically, being more clear and concise. During college I
will learn how to write quicker and make my writing curt as going through college.
Growing up, technology has always been a part of my life and the devices, such
as the Leap Frog, have helped me to learn how to read. Every day, I send text messages to
my friends. Sending these messages has also impacted my writing and when I sit down to
write a paper, I often resort to text message language rather than proper English and
many times I have to correct myself. I also believe my culture impacted my reading and
writing skills, because I grew up with parents that read to me every night and that were
interested in improving my education by getting me tutoring has impacted my reading
and writing skills and I probably would not be the writer I am today without my parents
encouragement. All my school, culture, and learning environments have made me the

writer I am today and yes, I could strive to improve my writing as I go throughout