Work Hard

Teachers Can Make a Difference

6312FEEB-DFAC-4DD7-9451-4A864BFE47BFEvery kid is one caring adult away from being a success story

- Anonymous

    Small interactions can make a big difference. In my life, small interactions with teachers have shaped who I am today. One conversation that I had with a teacher that has truly made a difference in my life was in seventh grade when Star told me that if I work hard in Baseball, or anything in life, I can do well. It was a Friday morning, and Star called me in to his office. I had been at Varsity baseball tryouts for the last couple days, and it was finally time for me to find out if I had made the team. I walked in to his office and he told me to sit down on the couch. He kept it short and sweet and congratulated me on making the team. I was so excited that I almost missed him saying the thing that I still think about to this day—that if I work hard at Baseball, or anything that I choose to do in life, I can do well. This statement didn’t seem that important to me at the time because I was just thinking about making the team, but thinking about that now, it was one of the most important things that he could have said to me. Before that point, I had just taken sports and other things in my life that I had for granted. I wouldn’t work hard to get better at sports, and I just accepted how good I was at the moment. Now I know that in order to get better, I must work hard and I can never stop working. Star instilled this thought in my mind, and while I could not understand the importance of this statement when he first said it, now I realize the difference that it has made in my life. You might not realize it, but teachers can make a difference in your lives.


Perseverance

Push Yourself to New Limits 

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Success is no accident.

- Pele

    Perseverance is a quality that every person wants, and it is a quality that Jerry, an 11 year old English boy, discovers in the short story, “Through the Tunnel, by Doris Lessing. While on vacation, Jerry leaves his mom for the day and heads down to the rock beach. There, he meets some “big boys — men, to Jerry,” who he is foreign to, and sees them swimming down through this tunnel in the ocean and holding there breath for up to 160 seconds. Jerry thinks that it would be cool if he could also do that, but then he realizes that he can only hold his breath for 60 seconds. Jerry perseveres through this, and after a week of training himself to hold his breath, is finally able to swim through the same tunnel, and is triumphant after persevering through all of the obstacles that came his way.

A hundred, a hundred and one… The water paled. Victory filled him. His lungs were beginning to hurt. A few more strokes and he would be out...Then he saw, above his head, a crack running up through the rock. Sunlight was falling through it, showing the clean, dark rock of the tunnel, a single mussel shell, and darkness ahead.

Jerry finally completed what he had been working for, and he never gave up along the way. While holding his breath for two minutes may not seem like a big accomplishment, he “pushed himself” through every challenge that came his way. While he didn’t think that he could do it, and “felt he was dying,” he still did it, and while being able to hold his breath for “three minutes, at least,” may not bring Jerry far in life, the skill of perseverance that he learned in the process will be a skill that sticks with him for many years to come. It doesn’t matter what you do in life, push through the challenges that come your way.


3 Minute Slam Poem

Homework in the third term,

Do teachers not understand?

When we walk around the halls of this campus,

School is not on our mind.

Our high school is already determined,

But the teachers don’t care.

We are all done with school,

But the teachers keep up the workload,

“This will prepare you for high school,” they say,

But I am already prepared.

We walk on this campus,

With all the white and black buildings,

Not to keep learning,

But to enjoy our last days together.

No one wants work,

But teachers never loosen up.

Do they expect us to still care?

Do they expect us to still try?

How are we supposed to stay focused,

When next year is the only thing on our minds.

We’re on a senior slide they say, 

But they don’t understand.

When we are in class,

We don’t want to learn,

We are just thinking,

About going back home.

What’s the point of exams,

We say to them.

We’re retaking ninth grade,

Haven’t we been through enough?

“This is high school,” they say,

But when will they learn,

This is definitely not high school.

This is a middle school,

If anything.

We are still looking forward to our high school days,

Not looking back at our first year.

Fenn is a great place,

And it has been my home for 6 years,

But I am ready to move on,

Same with everyone in our grade.

Ninth grade has been one to remember, 

But it is ninth grade.

Not freshman year,

Not the first year of high school,

Just ninth grade.

And in the third term of ninth grade,

We are not looking to learn more material.

We are looking to spend the last of our time together,

Playing spikeball and enjoying ourselves.

But with nights filled with homework,

And the third term filled with tests and studying for exams,

We are doing everything but having fun.

They think we still care,

About this thing called school.

But no we don’t,

They just don’t understand.


Slam Poem

 

Homework in the third term,

Do teachers not understand?

We are all done with school,

But teachers keep up the workload,

Not caring about how the students feel.

We continue to complain,

But all they say is “This is high school.”

This is middle school,

But they won’t listen.

They don’t want us to loosen up in the third term,

But we’re ready to leave,

And work is not on our minds.

How do they expect us to work,

As hard as we did before.

We have no motivation,

Why work hard?

They always say that this will prepare you,

But I am already prepared.

We’ve been taking exams since 7th grade,

Why one more?

We’re on a senior slide they say,

But how do they expect us,

To keep up the same effort,

When all we can think about is next year.

We are all ready to have fun,

Not to do homework.

We want to bond in the last days of our time here,

But no they say,

Here’s an exam and a paper.


Sonnet #1

Soccer

The sun beams down upon the soccer field,

The gold and white lines cover the green grass.

Both teams walk out as they are unconcealed,

The teams walk end to end as they both pass.

The whistle blow signaling them to play,

The fans all cheer for there own blue and gold.

The Fenn team scores and fans scream, “Down with Fay,”

We win the game as happiness unfolds.

And after the long hard fought game was won,

The team heads back into the locker room.

We were so sad after the game was done,

The joys that soccer season brought went boom.

The power of a simple little ball,

It is something that is wondrous to all.


Blank Verse Poem

Dogs

 

The frozen snow dropped down from the white clouds,

The fresh powder covered the brown dirt ground,

The only sound was a chirping blue jay,

The little boy darted out of his house,

Little feet were imprinted in the snow,

He jumped up and down, happy as can be,

Smiling at every bird and squirrel in sight,

At last his favorite time of year had come.

 

This was the happiest that he had been,

But nobody was with him by his side,

No friends, no siblings, not a soul to be found,

This little boy hanging out by himself,

After a while he just started to sulk,

But then something appeared out of the house,

It was not a kid or a parent there,

It was a furry dog full of energy.

 

There will not always be someone right there,

But there will always be dog for you,

As humans, we do not deserve these dogs,

But they are still always awaiting you

 

While this boy had no one to play there with,

His dog is always there to cheer him up,

Right away he forgot the disappointment,

The boy does not need anybody else.

 

Metacognition:

I thought this poem was going to be much harder to write than it actually was. I just looked at it and got intimidated, but after I got the first couple of lines down, it just started flowing. I tried my best to use the stressed and unstressed words, but I could not always get it to be perfect. Other than not always getting the “da-doom’s” correct, I thought that it was easier than I expected, but it was still difficult to write.

 


Thoreau’s Views on Charity

Why Thoreau Doesn’t Like Charity

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I have made some sacrifices to a sense of duty, and among others have sacrificed this pleasure also.

-Henry David Thoreau

    Charity can be a great thing—or not a good think. In the chapter, “Economy” in the book Walden, Henry David Thoreau gives the reader his thinking on the flaws of charity. Thoreau describes his dislike for charity by saying that people don’t use it for the right ways, and he would not take the money if someone were to offer it to him.

 

    Thoreau begins by stating that he doesn’t participate in charity partly because the people who receive it don’t necessarily put it to the right causes. He then goes on to say that he has tried it and doesn’t agree with what it stands for, He does not look down on the people who receive charity, but Thoreau would run away from it if charity was ever offered to him.

 

“If I knew for a certainty that a man was coming to my house with the conscious design of doing me good, I should run for my life, as from that dry and parching wind of the African deserts called the simoom, which fills the mouth and nose and ears and eyes with dust till you are suffocated, for fear that I should get some of his good done to me- some of its virus mingled with my blood.”

 

    Charity is against Thoreau’s ideals. If he were to receive it, it would almost be a threat on his way of life. This is the first part of this section in the book where Thoreau describes his opposition to the subject by making it personal. This quote also suggests that charity is almost a virus that infects you. This reveals that he thinks that charity catches you by surprise and leaves you in a worse position than you were before. Charity is something that is meant to help out people in need, but, like when someone wins the lottery, it almost always leaves them in a worse position.

 

    We should worry about the good things and not dwell on other people misfortunes in this short life we live.


The Power of Place

Fennway Park

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    Everyone is tied to a special place. In my life, I am passionate about baseball and the baseball field at Fenn, “Fennway Park’, is a special place to me. Although in the fall and spring going to the baseball field is not part of my daily routine in the Fall and Winter, it is somewhere I feel comfortable, and somewhere I know I can have fun. It was a Sunday afternoon and my dad had just gotten back from his trip to North Carolina. The teachers had not assigned homework for the next day, and our family had nothing planned. My dad asked me what we should do and I told him I wanted to go to the baseball field. My dad said that we could head over to the Acton-Boxboro high school fields or we could just play catch in our back yard, but I told him that I wanted to go to Fenn. My dad and I placed our baseball gear things in the back of the car and hopped into the green Subaru and made the twenty minute drive to Fenn. We pulled up to the drop off circle, and the sun was gleaming off the new infield dirt. I headed out to shortstop and fielded some grounders, and then went in and took a couple cuts at the plate to get me ready for the next days game. Although to many people all baseball fields seem the same, Fennway park will always be special to me. I have a grown up playing on this baseball field, and I have learned so much about baseball and life in general. It may just be a baseball field to many, I will never forget the Fenn baseball field. A place can be more powerful than you think.


Journaling

 

As I walk through the tree-covered forest, the smell of pine fills the air. My golden retriever, Finn, walks by my side as we make the 30 minute walk through the dirt paths of the Acton Arboretum. While my day is usually made up of video games, TV and playing sports, this time I have walking my dog is a nice way to get away from everything and think. Think about school, friends, and about all of the nature that surrounds me. We live in an age where technology makes up most of our lives and this time that I have walking in the woods and disconnecting from a device is a rarity. We are so focused on staying up to date on social media that we forget how good it feels to be alone with nature. I have never thought about how special this time walking through the Acton Arboretum is to me, but now I realize how important it is for me to disconnect and see the beauty of nature. Devices may control our lives, but we all need a break.


Clothes and Shelter

Timmy Smith

Economy Literary Reflection

Fitz’s Class

4/11/19

 

What you want isn’t always what you need

- Anonymous

    The truth can be difficult. In English class, we are reading Henry David Thoreau’s Walden, more specifically the first chapter, “Economy.” In this chapter, Thoreau made me think deeply about how, as human beings, we often get our wants and needs mixed up. Thoreau may have been writing in the 1800’s, but all of the things that he talks about are still relevant today. People, including me, continue to buy the most expensive clothes and the fanciest houses. I agree with what Thoreau is saying, and he made me think about why I wear what I wear and live where I live.

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