Link Crew Portfolio Essay

Unit 1: Getting to know your grade nine’s 1. I am fortunate to have gotten to know and to have been able to mentor all my grade nine-link students, I have gotten to know that all of them are special and talented in their own ways. The grade nine-link student that I will be profiling is one of those many; I remember the first time I met this grade nine and how excited she was to be starting high school and unlike all the other grade nines we had who all looked nervous she looked ready and energized for what was waiting ahead of her. I also remember that on the first day of high school she had her career plan already set, she wanted to be a veterinarian and she also knew what university she wanted to attend and what school courses up to grade twelve she had to take. I was so impressed with her because I remember my first day of high school I was a nervous wreck who did not want to meet any new people or go out my comfort zone.

This link student would always come to me if she had any questions about school and most importantly, she always wanted to know when our next link AFU was, this always made me happy because I knew that she was interested in what we (my link partner and I) had to say. This link student’s learning style would have to be visual, I say this because back during the first day of school we had a discussion on books, more specifically the Hunger Games since I noticed that she had a Hunger game necklace after mentioning that she told me that she had read the Hunger Games 64 times already. Sixty four times is a lot of times to read one book and that is quite impressive for a young girl, the thing that makes her a visual learner though is right after she said that she told that she had to read that much times in order to visualize it and memorize it since it was her favourite book.

I also say she is a visual learner because every time we would give out examples during our AFU she would always ask us to write it down or show her an example so she could visually see it. I would also say that she is linguistic due to the example given above about her reading a book 64 times , she is also very outspoken and she is able to portray her feeling and thoughts through language and speaking. For her socio-economic background, I would have to say that in my perspective she has a stable socio-economic background and that she has never once come to me about socio-economic problems, or have I ever heard anyone once say that she has socio-economic issues. Since my grade nine student is really outspoken she is sometimes portrayed from her peers as very talkative, and just from my link group I could see that some of my link students get annoyed of her because she likes to answer her questions in detail, which is a good thing.

I feel that people can’t really get to know her well because they make rash decisions based on their first impression and to some people their first impression of her is sometimes negative. The negative impression from others rather sets back her social development but other than that, her mental health seems to be fine. There isn’t really a huge problem with her physical health as well, and this allows her to be very energetic and spirited. Some appropriate future goals would for this link student would be to be more aware of other people thoughts, and to take into consideration other people’s opinions.

This hinders my grade nine from getting to really understand other people, and to see where others may be coming from, and this limits her social interactions with her peers. In addition, it is sometimes difficult for my grade nine to communicate with her teachers as well. Even though she has a lot of time ahead of her if she could improve on this, she would be both socially and academically ready to face all of high school.

2. For me personally a good example where school or community services helped students overcome barriers to learning would have to be my story of overcoming my barrier to learning a new language. Growing up I was never the brightest person, I had difficulties learning in elementary school. When I first arrived to Canada, I knew nothing and to make matters worse it was difficult for me to get new concepts, such as a new language. Therefore when I finished first grade my mom decided to have me held back and put back in to grade one again. I was sad at first because I wanted to be in the same grade as my friends but then I was put into ESL, why they didn’t put me into ESL my first year I have no idea.

After I was put into ESL though I could see myself continuously improving and the thing I liked most about it was that I never felt any pressure from my ESL teacher, and I was able to learn at my own pace. It became gradually noticeable that I was improving and after a year or so, I did not need ESL anymore. Soon following that, I was able to go back to my original grade because ESL helped me achieve and overcome my barriers to learning.

3. A meaningful mentorship interaction between my link kids and me would be the time I helped one of my link kids have a better communication with one of her teachers. My link kid was having trouble understanding one of her teachers and the way I figured this out was that one day during lunch while I was talking to one of my friends in the cafeteria I noticed my link kid sitting at one of the tables. I went up to her to say hi but then I noticed that she was looking gloom and my link is always a happy cheerful person and full of spirit. I became curious and so I asked her if she was okay. I could see she was resistant at first to tell me what was troubling her, but after a brief second or two, she started to open up and tell me how she was having trouble understanding one of her teachers, and how the teacher was always yelling at her for reasons she didn’t understand.

She went on to tell me how she tries her best to do everything her teacher asks of her to do, put even then her teacher still picks on her. After listening to her story I decided to tell her about the miscommunication I had with one of my teachers when I was in ninth grade. I told her how I also didn’t understand where my teacher was coming from and how I would blame this teacher for my mistakes. Right after I said that though I added that it wasn’t really the teachers fault and the it was my fault due to the fact that I didn’t efficiently communicate with my teacher and that I never went up to inform my teacher whenever a problem arose.

I also added that I never gave my teacher the opportunity to understand where I was coming from and so it was difficult for us both. After hearing this my link student knew that she had to go and talk to her teacher in order for them to have an effective communication and then there would be no misunderstanding. A week later, my link student came up to me to thank me, and she said that her teacher and she were getting along better now, now that there was better communication.

Unit 2: Personal Profile

1. Learning styles: My learning style would be intrapersonal and linguistic learning styles. I am able to feel energized and charged when I am alone, I also think better and I am able to understand new concepts better when I am alone and in a quiet place. I also like to write down a lot of my thoughts and new ideas that come to me, and I feel that it is easier for me to express myself by using language and writing then by talking. Interpersonal skills: Even though I am intrapersonal, I have a pretty good ability of listening and understanding others.

In most cases, I am able to know where most people are coming from, clearly listen to other people’s problems, and understand their situation in order for me to come up with a solution for them. I can also notice most people emotions by their tone and or posture. Teamwork skills: Some teamwork skills I have are my ability to help others solve any problems they may have, my ability to share my ideas with my team, and my ability to effectively participate with my team. Management skills: I have good team management skills; I am able to effectively and efficiently work in a team and successfully accomplishment whatever it is that needs to be done in a team. I am also able to follow instructions and give out instructions when it needs be.

2. Given my personal profile, one area of improvement would have to be my personal management skills more importantly my time management and stress management skills. I have difficulties having the ability to recognize and solve time management problems. I am a huge procrastinator and it usually works for me, but I can fell the stress it has on me especially during my grade twelve year. In addition, I have difficulties managing my stress because when everything piles up I start to panic and make stuff more difficult than it has to be.

3. My personal strengths will help me achieve my futures goals by allowing me to excel in group collaborations and perhaps excel in things like research since I do like to research and this allows me to work on my own and to work with others. It will also help me get jobs and all the skills listed above would be excellent to put on my resume.

Unit 3: Management

1. An example of miscommunication or a challenge communicating in link crew was during the first day that we were playing the ‘Win as Much as You Can’ game. I remember we were confused as to how to play the game and like every other group we wanted the most points. Olivia caught on to the meaning of the game though early on and she started to tell us that it wasn’t really about getting the most points as individuals but as a whole team. I remember we didn’t really listen to her though and most of us were just interested in manipulating our way to winning.

After a while though we decided to take Olivia’s advice and pick the Y hoping everyone else also picked the Y, unfortunately no one else pick the Y and we ended up losing more points and since we were already behind we dropped Olivia’s idea once again and we started thinking about ourselves once more. In the end, our miscommunication was so bad that Olivia ended up tearing the X so everyone was able to see that we were supposed to be picking the Y from the beginning. This is basically the only example of miscommunication I have had in Link Crew. Some strategies that could have been utilized to communicate more effectively would probably be for the people in our group to have received and correctly understood Olivia’s message, and for Olivia to have been clear and concise about the message she was sending us.

Our group in the beginning had the mindset of winning the most points and so we were not able to clearly hear Olivia’s message and Olivia wanted to play the game the right way and for everyone to win so she wasn’t able to send out her message clearly and because of that the game became very jumbled and confusing. In addition, we should have been more open to Olivia’s point of view because she was right and we weren’t able to see until the end.

2. A conflict that occurred within my link group would have to be during our second AFU. During my second AFU my partner and I were partnered up with another partner as we do for every AFU, the problem with this AFU collaboration and what made it different than the others was that my partner was having some sort of conflict with one of the people in the other group that we were collaborating with. I wouldn’t say conflict actually more like they did have a conflict and were now at odds with one another and so once we were told that we were partnered up with the other group, my partner told me right away that I would have to stay with her during the whole AFU. What ended up happening was that my partner and I in some ways separated from the other group.

Due to that, I had to make a choice of either helping the other group out and effectively contributing to the AFU as a whole, or being beside my link partner so that there were no awkward interactions between her and the person in the other group. Even though there were no awkward interaction, between them two, the whole AFU was just awkward and it did not go at all as we planned it to. A better way to have approached this situation was to have had both my partner and the other person from our collaborating group talk out their problems before the AFU so that their dispute or awkwardness or whatever it may have been would not affect the AFU as a whole . Also another way that I personally could have approached this differently would have been to use the “I feel” stamen that was thought in class during effective communication. By using this I would have been able to effectively and concisely state my feelings and with that things might have gone better.

Action Plan for post- secondary destination:

I will first need to improve on my time management and organizational skills. I will improve on this by: 1. Making a personal calendar that will allow me to record everything I have do, this will allow me to plan each day and by doing this I will be able to have more control over my time and be less stressed. 2. I will need to prioritize my time to ensure that I send my time and energy on the things that are truly important to me. This will also allow me to have stress relievrs during post-secondary and I will need many of those. 3. I will need to say no to nonessential tasks; I have tendency to take on more than I can handle and then crash because of all the workload. I will need to consider my goals and schedule before agreeing to take on additional work

4. I will also probably take a time management course during the summer to enhance my time management skills. There are also many time management courses offered in post-secondary schools so I might take them as well. 5. I will also need to limit distractions; this is one of the main reasons for my procrastinations and I am a person who gets distracted easily. Some other strategies and goals that don’t involve time management and or organizational skills but will help me in my transition to post secondary would be: 1. Good sleep, exercise, and eating habits, this will help me be healthier and feel good about myself. This will also improve my focus and concentration which will be a huge advantage during my post secondary years. 2. Stop making things more complicated than they should be; I have a complicated way of making things complicated. If I could stop this my life, not just my transition to post secondary environment will be a success!

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