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"Harry Potter" - Stanford Intellectual Vitality

daniel44992 13 / 29  
Oct 7, 2011   #1
I'm a bit over the word limit on this one, 400 characters or about 70 words. If you could help me trim it down or just give an advice, that would be great!

Stanford students possess an intellectual vitality. Reflect on an idea or experience that has been important to your intellectual development.

"Okay class, go get one book to check out," declared Mrs. Simpson in her perpetually hoarse voice. I, along with the other second graders, ran straight to the Goosebumps books to try to find one I hadn't read yet. It was a muted mad rush since we were in a library but everyone was pushing and shoving trying to get the most popular books in the school. Once I finally elbowed my way up there I quickly scanned the shelves and my heart sank a bit. I looked again, still no Goosebumps books. I glumly walked away and wandered through the shelves looking for something else. From the end of an aisle, I saw Mrs. Good, the librarian, approaching and I tried to turn around but she called out to me, so I stopped and looked up at her towing form.

She tried to suggest to me a big book that had a boy riding a broom on the front cover. I'm sure I mumbled something about not liking to read and that it was too big anyway but she shoved the book into my hands and told me to try and read it.

And try I did. I still remember sitting on the top step at home, reading the first chapter and thinking how boring it was. But then I started to get into it and suddenly I couldn't put it down. I found myself whisked away to a world full of magic and danger. I found myself gripping the book when he was in peril from Voldemort and laughing, actually laughing at a book, when Dudley was given a pigtail. A month later I returned to the library and asked for the second one. I finished that one in two weeks and so kept going back for more until I had read all the way through the fourth one. But it wasn't just Harry Potter either, after I finished the fourth I didn't want to stop reading so I started perusing the library to find more books to read. I tired quickly of Goosebumps and started reading things above my grade level just for fun.

I attribute not only my love of reading, but also my love of learning to that year and that series. By simply reading books, I was learning new information that the other kids didn't know and that put me into the Gifted and Talented program in third grade which then lead to me taking double advanced math in middle school . All this culminated with me taking IB and AP classes and even considering a school as prestigious as Stanford. All this because of a librarian's suggestion and the exciting wizarding world of Harry Potter.
etron 5 / 17  
Oct 7, 2011   #2
This doesn't scream intellectual vitality, to tell you the truth. I was just like you as a kid; I started Harry Potter in second grade as well, was a bright kid, and had a thirst for knowledge. You should consider writing something that you have recently found interest in. An anecdote from your youth adds to the essay, true, but it doesn't MAKE an essay. Your writing is good overall, but you should work on sentence structure.

Maybe you could include parts of this in a new essay; it really does have some cool stuff in it.

Sorry for the blunt critique! I just believe that rewriting now will help you later.
angela711819 1 / 3  
Oct 8, 2011   #3
you have good writing overall but I agree with Emily. I think you should find something more recent to write about. Maybe find something you are even more passionate about and add more details or descriptions of emotion then the essay will really scintillate!:)
OP daniel44992 13 / 29  
Oct 9, 2011   #4
Thanks both of you! Yea, I thought it was kind of old but I found it harder to write about something new rather than just writing about Harry Potter. I guess I'll have to think long and hard now on a new topic!

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