Weather we choose to be or not, every one of us is a student because we are always learning. Every second of our lives gives us the opportunity to learn or experience something new. In my 19 years of life I have had many experiences in learning, some good, and some bad. I have been influenced and inspired by many of the educators that have played a part in making me the learner I am today.
We begin learning from the moment we are born and from then it is continuous. One basic skill most of us have, that we do not have to think about, is walking. It is so natural for us to just get up and walk around when we need to or just want to. We can see the struggle children have when they first learn to take those first steps, as the first steps do not go very far before they plop back down on their bottoms. When I was a kid, I had learned to walk, although it didn’t come as easily as it did for the other kids. I was still falling over at the age of 3 or 4. My parents had thought that I might have had some mental problems because I could not stay on my feet. As I kept walking I eventually learned how to keep myself balanced and was able to get back up no matter how many times I fell. I feel this experience taught me to never give up as a learner and to try harder when something may seem impossible.
I was a bit of a troublemaker in my elementary school days. One person I really got to know and hang out with was my principal. I spent many lunch hours and recess time with the librarian and the principal. I was never in detention for anything too serious and generally got along with everyone. The teachers and principal were very understanding and were supportive. They showed me the wrong I had done and helped me to express myself and still follow the rules.
I remember my favorite teacher in high school, Mr. Reed. I only got the chance to have class with him during my freshman year of high school but he had really impacted me. He had taken the sometimes-lifeless subject of math and made class something to look forward to. I remember his enthusiastic attitude toward the subject and I think it was one of the first times I thought how being a teacher must be so cool. I did well in his class because he encouraged all of us and was helpful when teaching. He taught me that not all learning has to be serious and we actually learned better when it wasn’t serious.
During my junior year of high school I had taken a creative writing class. I did not know what compelled me to do such a thing because writing was not my favorite thing, but a friend had convinced me it wasn’t what I thought. My first day in class and I loved it. The teacher was truly amazing and showed me a different way of writing, for myself. We had read one book as a class called “8 to Great” and it really helped getting my creative juices going and was really inspiring. I enjoyed the class and the teacher. This class really showed me that a change in attitude can make a boring or hard thing not seem so bad.
I am not an English person. I get overwhelmed when I have to write an essay or paper for class. Since coming to CSC, I have not had to write a great deal of papers, mostly during midterm and finals week. However, I took my first college English class while still in high school and it was defiantly not my favorite. It seemed like the papers and essays were non-stop and I felt like I wasn’t actually learning anything besides how to write 5 page papers in two days. The class was beyond stressful for me still being in high school but I managed to make it through. I wouldn’t say I really learned how to manage my time, I learned more about handling stress. That being my first college experience, I felt more confident when coming to CSC because I had an idea of what it would be like.
Everyone has a different learning experience and different perspectives. It’s interesting to see two people go through school together and becoming different students. I think the key to being a successful learner is your attitude.