Reflective Essay My personal learning style can be best described as kinesthetic, which means that I tend to learn more through experience than I do through lectures or other observational methods. This, however, does not mean that I am a bad listener, or that I do not learn at all by reading, writing, and attending lectures. One of the most important things that are bound to affect my learning is the fact that I am not always confident in my work, or my ability to properly accomplish the tasks in front of meThe next piece is a rough draft and a revision of the opening paragraph of my third paper .
. . What I had failed to do in my second paper was clarify terms, namely dharma, and that is what I started to do in this paper as well. To me, the revision shows a clarification process . . . I had a clear idea of [the terms] in my head and tried to portray this on paper .
. . These two paragraphs show me that I can read my papers better, although not perfectly, from the reader’s perspective now than I could at the beginning of the term. Erica) I like my second essay the best out of all my work because the subject I wrote about means so much to me. I included my very first journal entry along with my second essay because I feel it was the first time I ever discussed my feelings toward the problem of Indian reservations on paper. My views about the issue in this entry are very different than when I finished the essay.
I feel it is an important piece because it shows how my feelings have changed and also, I think, matured. (Zoe) Reading other peoples’ papers helped me to develop my analytic reading skills.It was sometimes hard to stay focused in reading other peoples’ papers because I would often find myself saying “Why didn’t I do that? ” or “Did I also make that mistake? ” Reading other peoples’ papers served to break the sort of mind block with which one typically views one’s own paper. After reading another person’s paper, as unrelated as it may have been to mine, I could look at my own paper with a fresh perspective. I think the reason for this is because in reading somebody else’s composition, one must identify with the writer and see the issue as they do, thus breaking out of your own mental cocoon.
Derek) For me, peer review was an excellent way to work on our essays. Not only do I feel that my classmates’ evaluations were important for my learning, I believe that my comments were valuable to them. My letter essays reflect a careful reading of the essays, as well as including a thoughtful discussion. I tried to approach the author with care-by being sensitive I was able to point out both the weak and the strong areas in their papers. Looking at the way in which other people write helped my own writing as well.
I was able to learn from their mistakes, while at the same time I was able to see how to improve my writing based on their strengths. (Christina) The development of my paper on moral conflicts in Valmiki’s Ramayana required for me even greater attention to writing issues, cultural differences and textual complexities than did the Rig Veda. My journal entry from February 4, 1992, shows the preliminary thought processes that operated in my first draft. By taking a quote from the text and tying it in to class themes (“leitmotifs”), I was able to lay down a basic conceptual framework for my paper.
In my first draft I worked on developing these ideas further. (Shasta) The way I write is a reflection on me because my own personal feelings show through in my conclusions and analyses. As a writer, I include what I have read, by stating facts, and including personal reactions and opinions. These reactions and opinions allow the reader to see the issues as I see them, which clarifies for the reader what I am trying to say, even if my method of writing may itself be unclear. (Dan)