WTE Personal Essay Final Draft.docx - Stokes 1 As a former fifth grader that headed to a new journey in middle school I can’t stress enough how much

WTE Personal Essay Final Draft.docx - Stokes 1 As a former...

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Stokes 1 As a former fifth grader that headed to a new journey in middle school, I can’t stress enough how much my fifth grade teachers reminded us of how independent we would have to be. Shouts of “no one will hold your hand anymore” or “you need to be more responsible now” filled the air. My peers and I’s feeble attempts to ignore this repetitive advice, were in vain. The general attitude held by faculty at Cliftondale Elementary School, was to put energy into us student’s abilities to pass standardized test, and be academically prepared for future standardized tests in middle school. But what about learning lessons outside of academics? Unfortunately, my school’s faculty didn’t touch upon this. Whether this was intentional or not, I do not know. However, middle school deviated from my elementary school years, in the sense that I learned life lessons outside of academics. The first life lesson I learned about, involved the value of friendship and loyalty with another. Being that this is the first lesson that I learned about through experience, I hold it very dear to me. This lesson wasn’t learned in one day, like typical classroom lessons – but rather, in an entire week on a class trip to Turkey. The situation that led to my experience in Turkey, began with my entry into the Fulton Science Academy Middle School during the 2011-2012 school year, and my first friend I made there. I previously went to elementary school in a predominantly black community, in the south side of Atlanta. Being black myself, I was able to easily assimilate to the culture and make new friends at my elementary school. This was not the case at Fulton Science, which harbored a completely different student body than what I was used to. When I opened the big doors of the school my smile quickly turned to a frown. No one in the school looked even close to me. From first glance, I was the only African-American in the school. I felt genuine confusion as to how to relate to a
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Stokes 2 mostly white and Muslim school population. As a result, I did my best to avoid everyone, for the first few weeks of the semester. All my elementary school teachers harped on us about grades, academics, etc. Why couldn’t they tell us how to deal with meeting culturally different people? Just when middle school was looking hopeless socially, an innocent looking fellow came up to me, curly head high with a wide smile. “What’s your name” he said to me. He was someone I’ve seen around, and I noticed
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  • Fall '15
  • Eric Martin
  • Dru

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