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Nicholas Marrone
Mrs. Raymond
UWRT 1103-E01
20 September 2015
The Journey of Forming My Literacy Narrative
I grew up in an extremely tight knit community in the suburbs of New Jersey. The first
school that I went to, there were only eight other kids in my grade. In fact the whole school was
so small that the school had to merge with another one. This became my elementary school,
Mother Teresa Regional School. Since the community was very quaint, news spread like rapid
fire. If something happened in school like a new piece of drama emerged, all the kids would
know about it by the next day. Similarly, if something happened in the town people would know
instantaneously either by word of mouth or the towns newspaper. I would remember the siren in
my town going off about once a week and everyone that was in houses would run outside to see
what was happening. This affected my literacy narrative because I never really had to search for
information and I always knew what was happening.
There are various social and economic problems that can impact a persons literacy
narrative. These issues include race, class, gender and socioeconomic status. Fortunately for me,
I was born as a white male from a middle class family with a fairly average socioeconomic
status. The school that I went to was a private school with a library and a computer lab. The
children that went to this school were mainly those who came from wealthy households.
However, if you started to go a couple towns over everything completely changes. You go from
nice suburban neighborhoods to broken down houses and low income apartments. The schools
reflected this area as they were also lackluster and underequipped with the necessary people and
tools to teach kids. My literacy narrative is significantly different than the literacy narrative of

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those kids. It was easy to see that the kids who lived in those towns would only go to public
school. In these schools the curriculum wasnt as challenging and the kids got into more trouble.
Actually, it seemed that the kids that went to these schools didnt even care about school at all. I
remember my dad saying School is your main priority and your only job so get it right. This
affected my literacy narrative because I was always very focused on my school work. I aimed to
get the highest grades and to become the best person I could be. This has helped me significantly
in my life considering that I knew what it felt like to work hard and achieve goals.
I remember very vividly the first time I was introduced to writing my first research essay.
The teacher that assigned it to me was Mrs. Taylor, my seventh grade honors English teacher. She
wanted me to research and write about Mt. Everest, its history and the surrounding area. She told
us that there were three main parts in writing an essay- the draft, revising the draft, and the final
copy. She said to spend the most time on the draft and planning the direction you are going to
take your paper in. She said after you had figured this out, the writing would become easier.
Another drastic change to my narrative happened in seventh grade. I was introduced to the
computer and the realm of social media. It became very easy for me to become friends with
others and connect with them online. It also made homework easier because you could research
the question or topic online and type the answers in Microsoft Word. In an academic journal
from Princeton an expert says:
one well-controlled study of a computer-based after-school program demonstrating that
children who participated in the program achieved small but significant gains in reading,
mathematics, computer knowledge, and grammar, were better able to follow directions, and
scored higher on school achievement tests, compared with nonparticipants (The Future of
Children).

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This is important to my literacy narrative because I always used my computer to research topics
online and do homework. Then I was given my first phone. It was called the Envy. With this,
communication with people became fun and instant. It revolutionized the world with its amazing
technology. When I started to text others, I implemented the language I had learned in facebook
in my texts. I used words such as brb, ttyl, gtg, and ily. I also shortened words. For example
you became u and with became w/.
Another instrumental part of my literacy narrative was my grandfather, however he does
not know this. He doesnt know this because when I was a young child I was obsessed with
baseball much like the rest of my family. I had books upon books of baseball stories and so did
my grandfather. One day while I was over at his house I decided to steal a book called The
Baseball Encyclopedia: The Complete and Definitive Record of Major League Baseball. This
became my Bible. This book made me proud because I was able to recite every players stats, I
felt like Malcolm X first learning to read I woke up the next morning, thinking about those
words - immensely proud to realize that not only had I written so much at one time, but I'd
written words that I never knew were in the world (Learning to Read 2). It was scary having
this book though because I felt like I couldnt tell my parents I had it nor could I tell my
grandfather. Because of this, I hid the book under my bed much like Lily from The Secret Life
Of Bees did with her mothers things For two years now Id kept these things of hers inside a tin
box, buried in the orchard (Kidd 14). As you can see Lily and I are much alike in the sense that
we both held something close to our hearts that affected our literacy narratives.

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Work Cited
Marrone, Thomas- Personal Interview, 1/18/08
" - The Future of Children -." Trustees of Princeton University 2014, 11 Feb. 2013. Princeton
University.edu Web. 23 Sept. 2015.

Kidd, Sue Monk. Book Club Kit. New York: Penguin, 2002. Print.
Malcolm X. Learning to Read. Snccd.net web. 7 Aug. 2014