The Year I Started to Hate Writing

It was my freshman year of high school when I started to struggle due to the lack of teaching. My English teacher Mr. Freitas played a big role in my literacy moment because he was a good teacher but was not very good teaching the students who struggled with English. For example, he would give fairly large assignments with a short due date. He frequently gave long reading assignments, which would consist of reading about four chapters in a night and questions that went along with the reading, and the assignment that went along with the readings would be to write a few paragraphs for each chapter and it would be due the next day. He usually went through the lessons and the notes so quickly that even the students who usually never struggled did struggle. So the students who normally did struggle had even more trouble succeeding in the class.

I soon started to hate anything that related to English and writing. Because I began to struggle with the material, I would stay after school often to get help with the material. Some of the things that I would stay after school for would be for things such as the homework. Most of the time I would not fully understand the homework and need him to clear things up for me. But he would never fully help with the issues that I was having. I soon realized that I was not receiving the help that was needed in order for me to succeed. Mr. Freitas would always come and briefly help me but never to the point that I would understand that material and the homework enough to succeed in his class. My grades soon started to reflect the fact that I was not fully understanding the material and the homework, and I soon started to fall behind. Every time that I stayed after for extra help, I never received much help because Math and English where the busiest subjects for teachers after school. Eventually, I just stopped going to extra-help all together and hoped that I would just pass; I even began to hate English all together.

I had basically given up on the fact that I needed help from Mr. Feitas and realized that I would just have to figure it out for myself. This literary moment was huge for me because it had taught me that if I was struggling and needed help, I would need to ask for it and not just wait till the problem got too big. Because I had given up hope that I would receive help from the teacher and began to struggle in class, I had to figure things out for myself. So I sought out help for myself and discovered a place that would be able to help me. In my school it was called the “fishbowl” because one of the walls was made of all glass, and to this day I still do not know the actual name of it. What the “fishbowl” was was a place for students to go get help in the morning if they needed it, and it was run by the teaching assistants. The teaching assistants could help in subjects ranging from math and English all the way to dental assisting and nursing. They really helped me because they helped me understand the assignments better and helped me create good study tools that would help with Mr. Freitas’s test and quizzes.

When I first started going, I was a bit skeptical that it would help me, but I soon found that my grades went up and I was not struggling as much as I had been. Because my grades had gone up I figured that they actually knew how to help, and so I started going for other subjects too. I had gone from someone who figured that they were not good enough and really started to hate anything that had to do with English to someone who did not mind English as much.