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Ashley Sere

College 1
Professor Ribeiro (F, 2-5)
17 October, 2014
Midterm Reflection: Successes and Failures
College may be challenging for many students and teachers because they may find themselves
confused in certain situations that require critical analysis. However, with these challenges and obstacles,
we can learn from them to help us reach our goals, in turn for our success. In my first half of the semester
at Pasadena City College, my preferences and perceptions have changed dramatically. In previous years,
especially in high school, I was taught to view my failures as something that I could only fix if I was
already accumulated with the knowledge in primary education. We were also given the false notion that
there was always a right answer. However, through these past few weeks into the semester, college has
taught me that despite these failures, everyone can reach their goals because we all have the capabilities
of having a critical mindset and determination. We can learn from our failures and successes while
creating critical mindsets together and matriculating new strategies.
From our successes, we are able to see some of our capabilities. Some of my positive experiences
in school so far were in my English 1A class. In the past few years, I used to dread going to my English
classes, because it meant that we were going to write essays. I was always taught that in English, we were
going to learn primarily on grammar and writing structures and style. However, through the course, my
perspectives changed. My teacher would regularly promote an open environment to the students. He
would also briefly discuss issues that are happening in current events to help us expand our minds. From
these experiences, he then utilizes some of these histories to help relate to our essay topic. He would often
promote the notion that it was necessary for teachers and students to help each other become better
educators for each other. Through these lessons, I was able to earn an A on my first essay on
Metaphysics and Materialism. This showed me that some strategies in learning include taking notes on
the material the professor discusses and regularly participating in class.
Throughout my first weeks of school, I have learned a lot about myself with respects to my own
responsibility and my own habits. In my environmental science class, we discussed issues on the
definition of science. We were taught that science is uncertain, because it stems from our observations
based on facts. From our failures, most of us blame each other for them. However, in my environmental
science class, we were taught that we must take responsibilities for ourselves. During midterm week, we
were given a midterm that included multiple choice and short answers. In my short answer portion of the
exam, I found out that I did poorly. At first, I questioned the teachers credibility: Did she correct it
wrong? What answer was she looking for? However, as we discussed the answers after receiving our
scores, our class learned that our grades do not define us. Our scores; however, do define how we make
our choices. We often make choices without realizing our consequences. A strategy into improving
oneself is that we must form relationships between each other with respect. It is crucial to question and
think critically on issues presented in this world.
Our successes and failures do not define who we are as a person. However, it does give us a
broader view of how we make our choices, such as our choice to take responsibility for our action. Some
of these experiences may come with challenges and obstacle, but it can also be a learning experience
along the way. For example, my positive experience had introduced me to what I am capable of doing; it
showed me that our knowledge is not fixed. We are capable of achieving our goals if we believe that our
knowledge can expand despite our failures. In college, there may also be experiences where are failures
can motivate us to try harder. In environmental science, my midterm exam scores have taught me that I
need to take responsibilities for my actions. For example, if I am confused on a certain topic, I should not
be afraid to ask the teachers to further explain on the subject. We both must become better educators for
each other. Our strategies can change our perspectives and promote critical awareness. Nevertheless, we
should not let our failures and successes define us. We should instead let them motivate us into being
more critically involved in our world.