What really is THE American Dream?

I chose my proposal to be on the topic of the American Dream. This is something that I always struggled with throughout grade school activities to really be able to understand my peers and even my own thinking process of how we want or expect our lives to be lived. To me the American Dream is to have unconditional love, support, and guidance from my family. I know others American Dream is all about the luxury of money, cars and fame. But is that really all you want out of life? How is that billionaires, movie stars, and famous song writers still aren’t happy with their lives and chose to go down the wrong path or even take their lives when they have everything some of us have ever thought the “American Dream” was? My question is, when is enough, enough? How can someone with so much money, so much fame and so much love from people they don’t even know they exist still be so unhappy with their lives? Something they dreamed about from the day they are born, they receive and still end up so unhappy? Then there are people who all they need and have ever hoped for is the simplest things in life are so happy and are living out their “American Dream” so simply.

I think the main issue on the American Dream is, some people finally reach what they once thought was their “American Dream” and are so greedy they want more. All they want is more, more, more and enough is never enough and never will be enough. They crave attention and they crave fame until it gets too much to handle. But how is it too much to handle when it’s all they ever wanted? How is it that you can get everything you want and still be so unsatisfied, so depressed?

I think people who already have their American dream achieved and want more are the ones who care about the issue the most; the ones who have already reached fame. But sometimes I think it’s the less fortunate who all they want are the little things and sometimes those things can’t even be given to them. They sit and watch these famous people go on about their lives wishing and hoping for me, more than likely getting it just for them to sit there and wonder where did they ever go wrong to not get what they have hoped for.

Everyone has a different definition to what they believe is “The American Dream.” There’s not one that is the same, so how are we to say what it really is and who is really living it? What do you think the American Dream is, how do you go about it, and who is really living their own American Dream and who is really living “The” American Dream?


Age vs. Literacy

Age influences literacy a lot in my opinion. As a kindergartner you can be literate by reading the writing and spitting words out but you may not comprehend them.

Literacy can be different in the way we use literacy. When writing papers you won’t to use correct grammar which can be categorized in “correct literacy.” When texting or just writing notes in class you can use acronyms and it still be considered literacy because you personally understand the form it is being wrote in.

Children don’t always understand literacy but they can spit out words, do they really know how to pronounce them from the way they look or because they hear their teachers/peers/parents saying them? What do you think?

What was significant?

The Element of Literacy-

To me the No Child Left Behind Act has all good intentions but don’t necessarily know how to go about things correctly. They are still going through trial and error. I thought it had a more positive effect on children before than it does now. Students aren’t learning all the material they need to be for the real world and teachers aren’t giving out deserving grades. I believe this could be because teachers believe they will be frowned upon in their teachings if too many kids are failing even if that is the grade they deserve.

Literacy is… Metaphors: Adaptation, power, state of grace

Adaptation: you need this to get by, maintaining

Power: being able to climb the social ladder, doing more than just getting by

State of Grace: Abilities of understanding that others don’t have, “I’m better than you because I am literate and you’re not.” attitude

Standardized testing to me is not a way of testing your literacy

It never occurred to me that there was more than one type of literacy, after hearing what the class had to say in our discussion I have a way more better understanding of it. The three metaphors of literacy that we discussed really helped me better understand, from adaptation, power to state of grace. In my thoughts I thought the State of Grace metaphor really stood out. To have the ability to understand things that others don’t have is a higher educated form of literacy, I would say.

Grammar Rants

When I was in middle school writing to me wasn’t a subject I was very strong in, spelling errors, grammatical errors, and punctuation was always a struggle for me. I was constantly receiving papers back with low grades not due to the lack of information or the way I thought through my writing but because of spelling, grammatical and punctuation errors. “You’re” and “your” were two words I never really understood how to use in the correct contexts along with, “they’re, their, and there.” until I got into high school. Knowing that this can sometimes be a difficult subject it’s always important to keep trying to learn how to use words in the correct context. Now that I understand how to it irritates me to no end when my peers use them in incorrect ways!

Todays class really pointed out to me that not all grammatical errors are completely incorrect. Everyone has a different way of viewing things, but that doesn’t always mean they are the correct ways.

What I believe “good” Writing is

In my opinion to be literate means to understand readings and have acknowledgement of what words means. To be able to have “good” writing you have to be literate. Good writing is your own words, and also your own process of thinking. Grammar, punctuation, logic and understanding are very important parts to a “good” writing. Restating something you have previously talked about is okay in some senses but also not okay in other. Repeating yourself over and over, just rambling turns a good writing into a poor writing. The words you choose to use in your writing matter a significant amount, they matter and can make or break your writing. “Good writing serves the reader, not the writer.” http://www.annhandley.com/2013/11/18/9-qualities-of-good-writing/. Some qualities in “good” writing that are important to have are ideas that are important, smooth sentences, express ideas, and make connections. Qualities I would find in a bad writing would be, rambling on, talking about something in your writing that has nothing to do with the subject or object, horrible grammar and punctuation.

A grammar rant that grinds my ears is when people use texting abbreviations in their school-work, papers, and anything that isn’t text messaging. Honestly even using abbreviations in anything that someone else will need to read or make out drives me insane. Not everyone is familiar with your abbreviations, it is not that hard to spell out a word!

I agree with the statements about beginning your papers with a thesis statement, I always thought that my thesis statements in high school were too long but my teachers never thought anything of it. To me as long as you get your point across in the paper, but state your main purpose of the paper at the beginning it shouldn’t matter where your points come across. I also strongly agree with the punctuation comments, my teachers in high school never really referred to the I’s and you’s as much as I see my professors correcting my writings now in college. It’s a different perspective that professors and teachers from high school have from one another.

Inquiry into Inquiry

1) “Inquiry is the act of seeking information by questioning.” (http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/inquiry) Using Inquiry you are to wonder and go deeper into the subject than you normally would, by interrogating the subject. Investigating a situation thoroughly and righteously. (http://galileo.org/teachers/designing-learning/articles/what-is-inquiry/) The dimensions of inquiry are: authenticity, academic rigor, assessment, use of digital technologies, active exploration, connecting with expertise, and elaborated communication. I also was able to find this definition of Inquiry and thought it was the perfect explanation, “Inquiry … requires more than simply answering questions or getting a right answer. It espouses investigation, exploration, search, quest, research, pursuit, and study. It is enhanced by involvement with a community of learners, each learning from the other in social interaction.” (Kuklthau, Maniotes & Caspari, 2007, p. 2) (http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/literacynumeracy/inspire/research/CBS_InquiryBased.pdf)

2) Inquiry Based Learning (IBL) is to ask as many questions as necessary to fully understand the subject. Go beyond the normal measures of finding facts and look deeper into than you normally would. Ask more questions and research more on your subject. (http://www.teach-nology.com/currenttrends/inquiry/) Teachers use inquiry based learning to fully engage the students and potentially increase there understanding through the course hands on. (http://www.teachinquiry.com/index/Introduction.html)

3) Science Education uses Inquiry Based Learning in their experiments while trying to decide on a hypothesis. They are to gather information and questions form students with little knowledge on the subject and then using inquiry based learning they are to collaborate on methods and using the questions they are to find more direction to ask deeper questions. (http://www.brynmawr.edu/biology/franklin/InquiryBasedScience.html) History teachers use Inquiry Based learning through textbooks more than through technology, they want their students to investigate questions through historical evidence, they want their students to see that history isn’t always a collection of facts but also a “rigorously constructed set of arguments.” (https://prezi.com/u-vyz19kuze2/inquiry-based-learning-in-history-classrooms/) Not everyone ages on Inquiry Based learning and as we can see from my research that science teachers use it for their methods as history teachers use it more for proving that history isn’t always what we believe it is.

-Students who seem to have a better grasp of the topic are able to provide bigger theories and make “bigger ideas” out of a circumstance than other students who might just continue to find more information through simple questions. (http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/literacynumeracy/inspire/research/CBS_InquiryBased.pdf) Students who attend public school vs. being homeschooled might have a different look upon inquiry based learning because the homeschooled students are able to engage more one on one and seek time to find more inquiry based information than a public school student would on a time scheduled bases in class. There thinking might not be able to be as engaged as a homeschooled students thinking would making the public school student not agree completely with inquiry based thinking. (https://dmabe4.wordpress.com/tag/inquiry-based-learning/)

-There are overlaps in peoples’ understandings of Inquiry Based Learning from connotation and denotation learning. Connotation refers to anything that could be used in more than one way, while denotation refers to things that can only be referred to as one thing. When inquiry based learning becomes apart of this the critical thinking has to be more engaged than usual. (http://atheism.about.com/od/criticalthinking/a/meaning.htm) When one is trying to determine rather something is connotative verse denotation most assume and come up wrong in the end. When using the two words you are trying to describe the meaning of a word, technically you are using inquiry based learning to look further into something than usual. People don’t realize this and don’t understand the use of inquiry based learning while they are trying to figure out the denotation or connotation of a word. (https://www.csun.edu/~bashforth/098_PDF/06Sep15Connotation_Denotation.pdf)