Teacher Narrative Paragraph


No Excuses

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Give a damn and figure it out

     Give a damn and figure it out, good words to live by. Mr Fitzsimmons my English teacher at Fenn said "Give a damn and figure it out". I've heard this from the beginning of the year and in almost every single class, "Give a damn and figure it out". I remember the first day of class when he gave the class our first assignment. He said something along the lines of, if you don't know how to do it then give a damn and figure it out because you'll probably find a way to work around it. The next class everyone came in having not checked the blog for the homework because we "forgot". We tried to say things like, "it wasn't on the calendar", or "it wasn't posted", because it was what we were used to. But we knew we had homework, we had heard him say it in class. But all of us just wanted to make an excuse to not do our homework. The class after that we started to understand the meaning of this ideology more and more. It was more then just a saying, it's a life style. To try and to rely on yourself to get stuff done. If you hand in something incomplete or not well written, its no ones fault but you own. In this class I've learned and I've failed. I've made mistakes and I've fixed them. This saying has made me a better student and worker. Its helped to not blow things off when I should be working on them. Its taught me the lesson that when you make mistakes they are your mistakes and no one else's. Mr Fitzsimmons has made me not only exponentially better at writing but he has made me a better person too. Fitz's English was more than a class; it was a experience, a life lesson.

Narrative Paragraph on Through the Tunnel

    Failure To Success

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The only way out is through


Failure can turn anyone into a determined machine. In the short story Through The Tunnel, a young boy who is eleven years of age is swimming in a rocky area and meets some older boys. These older boys know of a tunnel under the water and when they are leaving they use this tunnel " Then one, and then another of the boys came up on the far side of the barrier of rock, and he understood that they had swum through some gap or hole in it" . It took these boys about two- three minutes to get out on the other side. When this boy was unable to do it he felt disappointed in himself and he felt like a failure. So he begged his mom to get him goggles so he could see under water, he begged and begged until he got them. "But now, now, now! He must have them this minute". After he got them he dove under water until he found this cave. Once he found the cave he realized that he had to hold his breath for a long time. So he trained for next couple of days by just repetitively going under water and holding his breath for as long as he could to the point where his nose was bleeding profusely and his head was throbbing. "That night, his nose bled badly.". But eventually he's able to swim under the tunnel successfully.

He must go on into the blackness ahead, or he would drown. His head was swelling, his lungs cracking. A hundred and fifteen, a hundred and fifteen pounded through his head, and he feebly clutched at rocks in the dark, pulling himself forward.

He was determined to prove himself to those boys. He was determined to show himself that he could swim under the tunnel. He wanted to show himself that he wasn't afraid on the tunnel. Failure led this boy to his success.

300 word reflection on All Quiet

All Quiet Reflection

By Parker Nagtegaal


Today I finished All Quiet On The Western Front, it was the most depressing book I have ever read. The author captured the pain, suffering, and utter madness that occurs in war. Paul suffers many losses in the final chapter. He loses not only friends but his belief in life. He loses everyone who he has developed a relationship with. But the biggest lose of all was Katzinski, Kat was his best friend through out the war, Kat had taken Paul in and saved his life. When Kat was shot in the shin Paul took him on his shoulders and ran for the hospital. When he finally got to to the hospital he realized that even though he had talked to him only moments before that he had been hit by shrapnel on their way back from the front. Kat was lost to the war. Paul was finally broken by this, he had nothing left. His family doesn't understand him; his old friends don't understand him; his town doesn't understand him, the only people who truly understood the horrors war where his comrades, and none of them had survived. He now had nothing. When he got shot it may not have said but I think that he purposefully stood up and took the bullet because he had realized that the Germans were losing and he had nothing to fight for. This made me sad for the Paul. Over all I'm very happy I read this book, it may have been hard and painful to get through but in the end I feel as though it was an extremely meaningful experience. I will ever forget reading this educational, sad, and well written book. The writing that I have done will help this book stay with me forever, and who knows maybe at some point I'll even reread it.

Reflection On A Theme in Chapters 8-10

Horrors Of War

by Parker


The Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque many of the soldiers face death on the front and others see the conditions of prisoners. "On a foggy morning another one of the Russian is buried;almost every day one of them die" no matter what form it takes all the soldiers experience the horrors of war one way or another. Most soldiers have participated in the endless cycle that is kill, die, kill, die.

In chapter eight Paul is heading back to the front very soon. But at the moment he is still at the training camp. They keep Russian prisoners there. The Russians are malnourished and their moral is low. " In the darkness one sees their forms move likes sick storks" Paul looks at them and starts to think.
"A word of command has made these silent figures our enemies; a word of command might transform them into our friends. At some table a document is sign by some persons whom none of us know"

This fact that he was being controlled scared him; The fact that he was being turned against soldiers not so different from him scared him; The fact that he couldn't do much about it scared him. All these facts horrified him because they were the truths of war.

Chapter 8 reflection on empathy

Paul’s Empathy

by Parker And Jhonny 



People can only understand someone if you feel them in yourself, but empathy in chapter eight of All Quiet On The Western Front shows Paul the differences him and his enemy. Empathy shows Paul that the real enemy is the officers that tell the soldiers what to do like there just pawns in a chess game. This is because Paul and his enemy are really the same just normal men turned into beasts that are commanded to fight. This chapter has showed me that even the soldiers who have seen things unimaginable still can have feelings for others. Paul finds the Russians in a prison along side there camp. He sees there faces and feels sorry for them and feels sympathy almost as if he was in the cage.

“I take out my cigarettes, break each one in half and give them to the Russians. They bow to me and then light the cigarettes. Now red points glow in every face. They comfort me; it looks as though there were little windows in dark village cottages saying that behind them are rooms full of peace.”

Paul finds peace in helping the Russians. He gives them some of his food and cigarettes because he realizes that they are in similar circumstances to him and he feels empathy for what they are going through. The horror of war has changed the way Paul thinks about his life outside of war and on the front. It has changed the way he thinks about people. Thinking about others is not a skill you want to have while at war because next time he is faced with a decision between fighting and running he might run instead. Having feelings for other is one of the only things keeping Paul human. Empathy is necessary for a good life and I am interested to see where it takes Paul.


Bus Rides

by Parker Nagtegaal


Freinds will last you a life time. Me and Sam Dean have been going on the same bus since the fifth grade but we’ve never sat together until this year when the bus got so crowded that we couldn’t have our own seats. The bus in my opinion was always a very boring 45min-1hour wast of my time. But when me and Sam started sitting together I started to enjoy the bus a lot more. It was a lot of fun to talk and laugh with Sam. At this point I look forward to my bus ride at the end of the day because I have such a good time. I remember there was one time when I was only me, Micheal Mariani, Eduardo Tackas, and Sam on the bus. We were all alone (except for the bus driver). One of us was playing music (I forget who) and we all just started shouting the words to the song. Looking back I don’t know why it was so funny but in the moment us singing was the funniest thing that ever happened. We were all having a great time because instead of looking down on our phones for the whole bus ride we were interacting with each other. From the beginning of the year on me and Sam have gotten to be better and better friends and have had so much fun on  the bus with him. Im sad that next year I won’t be on the bus with him. But for the remainder of the year I will have fun bus rides and I will cherish ever single one. All the bus rides are experiences that I will never forget.

Power of Family

Family Helps

Parker Nagtegaal



Family will pick you up when you are down. In my family when I am sad that will crack a joke and make me laugh. When I was younger and I was going through some friend issues my aunt, uncle mom, and dad all comforted me and said it would get better. It was the afternoon of 2016 I didn’t have a lot of close friends at the time and I felt cut off from a lot of people. But I was at my aunt and uncles so I had to be happy. My mom told them about what happened and sure enough I started talking to them and they immediately made me happy. They made me laugh and told me about times when they were younger when they had very similar issues. This made me feel good and I knew that soon I would find people who I enjoyed being with. My family comforted me when I hadn’t done anything for them. I hadn’t done the same for them. I hadn’t helped them with a chore. All I did was be born and they gave me their love for no other reason then the fact that I needed it. That’s the best part about family there always there for you. My family said it would get better and it did.

Chapter Six Essay

6th Chapter

by Parker Nagtegaal


       War can tear people apart and turn them into something they aren’t. In the book All Quiet On The
Western Front all the characters go to fight on the front in chapter 6, this turns all of them in killing machines that only think about themselves and staying alive. 


      This makes perfect sense because in these life or death moments they face on the battlefield all the want is to make it out alive. crouching like cats we run on, overwhelmed by this wave that bears us along, that fills us with ferocity, turns us into thugs, into murderers, into God only knows what devils”. When they see the horrors of the men and what they do to each other some go crazy and curl up in a corner like Himelstoss. He was scared of what he had seen and he was petrified with fear. In these horrific battle of loud bombs and charging into machine guns that are ready to mow down your whole army and all your comrades. This is pain I can only imagine that if I was put through I would take my own life having seen the terrors that they have. I would never be able to look at the word the same. These images would never leave my head.


       In these fights it’s just non stop charging towards the enemy getting mowed down, retreating and shooting down the charge enemy then you charge and repeat the process. This makes the soldiers monsters more than men. They don’t care for people they just kill. We are forlorn like children, and experienced like old men, we are crude and sorrowful and superficial—I believe we are lost.” This is the sad reality of the toll it takes on these men.


      This chapter helped (or rather didn’t help because it was so horrifying) me to understand the terror that these me fight for. They don’t think about who (or what they are fighting for) they only think about keeping themselves alive.

Group Paragraph On Chapter 4

Group Reflection On Chapter Four

By Parker, Sam, and Denny

0C91AF1A-D132-4BB3-BBDE-761FAA4CA90CGrief can take care of itself, but to get the full value of  joy you must have somebody to divide it with.”

Everybody deals with pain and loss, it is those around us that give us comfort. In the book, All Quiet On The Western Front, by Erich Maria Remarque, the soldiers face a lot of pain and loss during the war. They have to be there for each other and look out for one another. In the story there are a multitude of moments where someone needs help and receives it. There are also a few moments where someone is in pain and someone supports them and tries to help. It was on the battlefield, bomb shells were flying and soldiers were dying left and right. There were men scrambling for their lives, running towards shell holes and jumping in them, after all, a bomb never hits the same spot twice.  The explosions and gun fire were lessening as injured soldiers laid down in shelters. All of a sudden there was something, not bombs or gun fire “GAAAS- GAS” soldiers shouted from alI angles.

“I look at Kat desperately, he has his mask on—I pull out mine, too, my helmet falls to one side, it slips over my face, I reach the man, his satchel is on the side nearest me, I seize the mask, pull it over his head, he understands, I let go and with a jump drop into the shell-hole.”

They were in the middle of a war. He could have just left the guy there and not help him, but instead he went out of his way to help out his comrade and put a gas mask on him. There are so many soldiers dying that they could have the attitude of just being like “this one guys life doesn’t matter, I don’t need to help him” but obviously he decided to help out. On the battlefield everyone is treated like family. Even if they are not friends, they would defend each other like brothers. So far, this book has displayed a lot of comradeship and showed us how important it is during battle.

Metacognition: I didn’t do enough work on this, it’s as simple as that. I barely wrote a sentence, all I did was copy things into this typepad document. While it is hard to work as a group of three on a kinda small paragraph I still could have made myself more useful.