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Reflect on a challenge you overcame through persistence (two ideas, one to pick)


Meron243 1 / 2  
Apr 28, 2010   #1
Hello,

First of all I'm not very good writing essays. Second, English is my second language and i need help!!
Prompt: Reflect on a challenge you overcame through persistence.

I have some ideas to write about but i don't know which one to pick. So if you can ,give me more ideas to write about or let me know if one of my two ideas interest you.

first i thought of writing about the experience i had in school when i came to the US. How smart and very energetic i was but i wasn't able to get in Magnet school because my English score was proficient at the time. Fortunately after 2 years i got accepted.

Second idea- talk about life with my mother,who speak seldom English. i literally had to go everywhere with her to translate. But on the way i learned so many things that i wouldn't have on my own unless i was old enough to live by myself. Such as buying a house, dealing with credit, bills, about the real world in general.

Thank you.
jfhernandez7 - / 1  
Apr 29, 2010   #2
Hello Meron243,

First of all, I'm on the same situation that you are right know and by experience that which on of those essays you should do. I think the first one it will be much better because it will show how you became a fluit student by learning english. Even though that I'm a second learner too. I have been just 3 years here in the USA and some of my teachers had told me that I became an exellent student by practicing almost every day new words. And also the idea of this essay is about you and not your mom... :p

I really hope you can finish your essay...!
Good Luck...!!!
EF_Kevin 8 / 13,321 129  
Apr 30, 2010   #3
old enough to live by myself. Such as buying a house, dealing with credit, bills, about the real world in general.

When you use "such as" it has to be part of the sentence:
...to live by myself, such as buying a house, dealing with credit...

Just separate it with a comma.

I like the one about the Magnet school. Actually, I think you can use all the power of the one about having to grow up fast due to Mom's language barrier if you MENTION IT AS PART OF THE STORY ABOUT TRYING TO GET INTO MAGNET SCHOOL.

Know what I mean? That would get the power of both ideas.

As you write about magnet school, talk about your career goal that motivated you to attend the best school, and then talk about that motive as your reason for applying to this school for which you're writing the essay.
OP Meron243 1 / 2  
May 8, 2010   #4
Thank you so much for the help! Sorry i forgot to state that this essay is actually for my high school senior questionnaire to help the teachers write a recommendation.

If you can, please read the essay below and let me know what you think.
Thank you.

"I find 10,000 ways something won't work, I haven't failed. I am not discouraged because every wrong attempt discarded is another step forward." Said Thomas Edison. It reminds me of my Chemistry class last year, learning about the scientific method. I learned whenever we make an experiment we can only prove something if only one independent variable is altered at a time. Even if the test didn't work as we planned we still look for other variables to solve for until we're left with the right answer. That could take 2 , 3, 10 or even 10,000 tries, as Thomas Edison stated, to finally pay off. All those tries seeming to be a failure are an opportunity to gain success through experience and persistence.

It all started with a dream, an aspiration and a need to change that my mom had for me and my brother. Coming to the US was a whole new experience for me from the climate change to the way of life. It is not a surprise that all English second language learners had faced a challenge somewhere in their life whether it's through communication or trying to cope with their new life/culture. Communication is very vital in a foreign country, that's where reality hits us, and realize we had to learn the language in order to understand each other, because language depends on it .

I was 12 years old with an understanding of listening to English but had difficulty speaking. As a result I was placed in ESL(English as a second language) program. Nevertheless, I was very smart in all my classes specially in Math and Science. I would study till I understood every word in the book. And if I don't, I would look it up in my English-Amharic dictionary. All my teachers were very staggered how I progressed from a passive to vigorous student. Two of my teachers even skipped me to a higher class.

One time I heard about Magnet School lottery ,college preparatory public high school. I was interested so I went to the Guidance office, I filled out the form unfortunately I had a proficient in English and to apply I have to have advance score in both English and math. I was somewhat disappointed but the only thing I can do is try to improve. I started reading fiction books, write down definitions not only that but since my mom had a language barrier i literally had to go everywhere with her to translate and talk with adults. On the way, i learned so many things that i wouldn't have on my own unless i was old enough to live by myself, such as buying a house, dealing with credit, bills, about the real world in general.

After two years, In my sophomore year, I had a class project where I had to interview my teachers about their jobs. I interviewed my favorite history teacher and on the way we started talking about college and magnet school. I told her my ambition is to get in medical field which is not easy. There is going to be a lot of hard work. She then encouraged me to apply to magnet school and said that I needed to be challenged. She was right. It's one of the best decisions I have made. I got in ----- Magnet school where I'm a junior now. It's very different from other public schools. Everyone cares about their education and has the same goal. I have so much to accomplish through out these journey. These is my unfinished step to college reaching for my American dream.
EF_Kevin 8 / 13,321 129  
May 11, 2010   #5
to help the teachers write a recommendation.

This seems disingenuous. The teachers should keep extensive notes about your accomplishments and activities. They should be experts on you and should not need you to write the material to be included in their letters of recommendation.

when you do a quote, use a comma instead of a period:
I am not discouraged, because every wrong attempt discarded is another step forward," sai d Thomas Edison.

Okay, your writing is very nice; it shows your intelligence! I think, though, that you should focus on filling it with as many accomplishments as possible. I don't think this is very useful: "I got in ----- Magnet school where I'm a junior now."--- it is too obvious, not useful for the recommendation letter.

Write as many inspirational and impressive points as you can -- your accomplishments, adversities you have overcome, and especially classes and teachers that profoundly influenced you.

:-)
Give them a lot of material so that they will write a good letter!
OP Meron243 1 / 2  
May 12, 2010   #6
This seems disingenuous. The teachers should keep extensive notes about your accomplishments and activities. They should be experts on you and should not need you to write the material to be included in their letters of recommendation.

I totally agree with you.That's what i was thinking when they assigned it but i think it's to help them brainstorm faster.Plus the essay is not the only one, they gave us about 3-4 pages of questions about ourselves and our accomplishments.

OK, I'll make some changes. Thank you so much for the help!


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