Rice 1 Quentin Rice Professor Jan Rieman English 1103-006 February 6, 2011

Who Advocates Your Learning?
I had a really hard time writing this paper. I really didn¶t know where to start or what to write. My paper turned out a lot shorter than I hoped but I really ran out of things to say. Some strengths of my paper are my examples, and the number of sponsors that I had. Some of my weaknesses are obviously the length of my paper, and the conclusion that I wrote. If I had more time I would definitely have put more thought into brainstorming so I would have had more to write about. I also would have worked more on tying things together because I sort of feel that my paper is all over the place. Although I feel that I could have done a better job on this paper, I also feel that doing the Peer Workshop was helpful. I got advice from my group members that helped me change my paper and in the end helped it flow much better.
Comment [J1]: Thanks for the helpful and insightful self-assessment. Some papers are harder to write than others

When I hear the term ³Sponsor´ I usually think of a company or organization that supports a team, or holds an event to raise money for a charity. Although this is a valid use of the term, Deborah Brandt uses the term in a whole different fashion. In her book ³Sponsors of Literacy,´ Brandt defines a sponsor as ³any agents, local or distant, concrete or abstract, who enable, support, teach, model, as well as recruit, regulate, suppress, or withhold literacy-and gain advantage by it in some way´ (Brandt 407). When I think about sponsors, from her point of view, I realize that throughout life I have had many sponsors of literacy. A sponsor of literacy is
Comment [J3]: Be sure to note this is a dash. Comment [J4]: I m glad you offer this definition early in your paper. Comment [J2]: It s an article

Rice 2 not only someone who has helped you learn to read and write, but anyone who has supported you to learn something new. Personally I have had sponsors of mathematical, computer, mechanical, civil, religious, and alphabetical literacy. Growing up math has always been one of my favorite subjects. I have always enjoyed working with numbers and working with equations to solve problems, and I think all of this is because of my sponsor of mathematical literacy. Mr.Bellows was my 7th grade Pre-Calc Teacher, and he is the main person that I would consider my sponsor of mathematical literacy. During his class I always enjoyed the work we did, even though it was work. He made math even more fun than I already thought it was. When we would do problems that everyone was having a lot of trouble with, he would explain it in a different way that would help everyone understand and it worked every time. Another teacher who made a big impact on my literacy was Mr.Schwarzer, my civics and economics teacher in high school. Before his class I was really apathetic about our government, our judicial system. In his class he taught civics in a way that made it interest me. I didn¶t care about laws that didn¶t affect me, I didn¶t stay informed of current global political issues, and I really could not have cared less about the government. I was just like every other sophomore in high school; I didn¶t really care about what was going on nationally. He made the topics feel relevant and important even though it was history, not present news. I learned to appreciate our government, and learned that being apathetic doesn¶t make changes, but rather leaves the problems for other people to deal with. Each sponsor has affected me strongly but without a doubt my mom and dad are by far two of my biggest sponsors. Not only are they my sponsors for alphabetical literacy, but they
Comment [J8]: Great sounds very inspirational. With this type of literacy what did you feel privileged to that you didn t before? Did you feel part of conversations that you were not previously? How has this type of literacy carried through to today? Comment [J7]: Why a comma here instead of an or or and ? I m just curious about your choice. Comment [J6]: Did you always value mathematical literacy? Did you know what it could do for you? What was your motivation for acquiring it? Comment [J5]: Helpful intro you give some context for this issue and let your reader know some key terms needed to understand what you have to say.
List these literacies in the same order you explore them in your paper.

Rice 3 also sponsored my religious literacy. Growing up my mom and dad alternated reading me bed time stories. My dad always read me the same story, and eventually I had it memorized. Once I knew the book by heart I noticed that I saw words from the book other places, and that led to me learning to read. My mom also read me bed time stories and would always try to teach me letters in words, and the sounds they made. My mom¶s stories were usually biblical which taught me the Bible, and introduced me to Christianity, the religion I practice. It is also because of this that I was ahead of the other kids when we began reading and writing in school. Finally another sponsor that I had growing up was my stepdad. He sponsored my computer literacy. For as long as I¶ve known my stepdad he has always been a computer nerd. Whether he is doing work on the computer, ordering stuff online, or just surfing the web, I could always find him on the computer. When I was in middle school and high school anytime that I had a project to do on the computer he was always the first person that I asked and he always had the answer to whatever I needed. He also taught me how to use programs that I was interested in, and they came in handy when I took computer courses in high school such as Computer Applications 1 and 2. Along with all the people I have mentioned as sponsors of my different literacies, there is one more person who I feel is an important part of my literacy. That person is me. I feel that everyone has sponsors who have supported the along their road to literacy, but if someone doesn¶t want it for themselves then there really is no point in trying to force them to do anything. Malcolm X is a very good example of this. In his story, ³The Autobiography of Malcolm X,´ he writes about how he taught himself to read and write while he was incarcerated. The only resources he had available to him were novels from the prison library, and still the options were slim.
Comment [J12]: Sum up this paragraph and move your reader into the next. Comment [J10]: As with previous paragraphs, add details and specifics where you can like what kind of programs you learned, and how, exactly, your knowledge from your stepdad benefitted you in school. Comment [J11]: I m glad that you include you! Comment [J9]: What was it?

Rice 4 A sponsor is only as helpful as the information they provide to you, and the availability of them. I feel that all my sponsors did an adequate job helping me. Each one was different in their own way but all did an adequate job. They all got the point that they were trying to convey across to me, and each one made a difference. Although I feel that I have had many opportunities to learn new things, and have had very good sponsors to assist me in my learning there are still things that I wish I was more literate at. One of these is my mechanical literacy, especially with cars. I know a good bit about cars, engines, and how they work but I wish I would have had a sponsor who could have taught me more in depth information on them, such as how to fix certain things, and how to tell what is wrong when something goes wrong. This was never available to me because I never really came into contact with many people who worked on cars other than when I was getting something fixed. All in all I feel that I have had many people in my life who have sponsored my literacy in different topics. Whether it was mathematical literacy, alphabetical literacy, or any of the others, I feel that I have learned a lot. I am really grateful that I had the opportunity to learn what I have, and become appreciative of my sponsors and what they taught me. Without sponsors it is a lot harder for anyone to learn or grow in any area. Having so many different sponsors, and more that I didn¶t name I don¶t feel that any are more important than the others. I feel that all sponsors of literacy are important and that they all coincide with each other. If my parents had not taught me to read I wouldn¶t have been able to read the math book in class, nor would I have been able to comprehend what Mr.Schwarzer was
Comment [J16]: I m glad you address this aspect. Comment [J14]: Why such a short para? Can this be combined with your previous paragraph? Comment [J13]: True.

Comment [J15]: Read this aloud and see if it s punctuated as you intend it to be read

Rice 5 teaching in class. Had I not learned math in Mr.Bellows class I would have had a lot more trouble with other courses that I took later, plus all the other times in life where you use math.
Comment [J17]: An abrupt ending how can you lead your reader out of your paper more smoothly.

Quentin, Reading your paper, I can¶t tell how much you struggled with developing it. It feels rich and full and like you generated a number of ideas that help explore your sponsors of various types of literacies. I¶ve made some comments throughout that may help you think through some other aspects of your paper. Two areas to think about with revision are cohesiveness throughout the paper, specifically moving your reader from one paragraph to the next and moving your reader back out of your paper at the end. As for mechanical issues, if you visit the WRC site, there is a nice handout for comma use.

Works Cited
Brandt, Deborah. ³Sponsors of Literacy.´ Writing about Writing: A College Reader. Eds. Wardle and Downs. Boston: Bedford, 2011. 406-26. Print. X, Malcolm. The Autobiography of Malcolm X. Ed. Alex Haley. New York: Ballantine, 1965. Print.

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