When I came to the United States I was extremely excited due to possibilities that I had endlessly dreamt of. My lack of knowledge of what was awaiting me, cultural shock and language barrier did not discourage me from learning English language. The support of teachers, friends and family were vital for learning actively. My sister was a pivotal figure for my learning as she was more conversant with the language. She encouraged me and assisted in guiding me in my practice of presentation skills. However, it was my own passionate desire to learn the language and my personal motivation that elevated me to the level I have reached. In my English reflection essay I have used three essays starting with Frogs and Toads, My Experience, and, finally, Obesity in America. I have chosen these three essays because they are the clearest indication of my gradual improvement in English writing. Naturally, I have made considerable progress in my English skills and I can now convince any reader that I am a quality English writer. Presently I am much better than I used to be when I started just started learning English.
I faced a lot of difficulties writing my first essay. I was poorly equipped in writing and the fact that English is not my native language meant that I had to devote an extra effort to master the content of what I was going to write. The topic was Frogs and Toads and I had to demonstrate my capacity to write a descriptive essay that clearly outlined their differences. Some of the numerous challenges I encountered while writing this essay include the lack of using transitive verbs. Moreover, I was not familiar with the joining words and I made many common grammatical errors. Most of my sentences were incorrect and incomplete. For example, in the essay I wrote a sentence with ‘opposite with’ which is incorrect and have to be ‘opposite to’. Also, it was not appropriate to place it at the beginning of the sentence. Although I did make some mistakes, I was able to exhaustively outline the differences that exist between a frog and a toad. I not only learned a lot about frogs and toads, but I was also able to sharpen my English skills.
In the essay My Experience I was able to articulate the ups and downs I had to go through in my first semester at college while trying to learn English. In this essay I was able to write in first person. The essay involved a conversation I had with my sister as she tried to guide me in preparations for a final presentation. It was not easy because I had never gotten used to the idea of making presentations, therefore I was scared. I often practiced with my friends. My sister was very helpful in suggesting me an effecting strategy to use. All I could remember of the day I was making the presentation were her encouraging words “You can do it”. Although I was scared at first, I did calm down and was able to give the presentation and score a straight A. I also found it challenging when the mathematics teacher gave us a pop quiz. I was not prepared for writing the paper so I could not correctly express all my ideas. This affected me because I was sure that if I had done some revision, I would have performed much better. Surely those two experiences were a shocking revelation and a motivator at the same time. I had to go through some difficulties which helped me realize the power of a willing mind. I gained confidence in making presentations and now I am more comfortable in talking in front of people.
Once you find yourself in the streets of America, you do not fail to notice that a lot of people are obese. In comparison with Vietnam it is extremely shocking that in the country where I expected to find everyone physically fit, there so many overweight people, especially children. This inspired me to write an essay on the causes and some possible solutions to the problem of obesity. This paper was based on what I had observed and researched. It was an advancement comparing it with my previous essays in terms of size, content and grammar. I was able to evaluate my successful progress as a writer. In America most young children spent more than half of their day at institutions of learning and that is why the war against unhealthy eating habits should begin there. Educating the younger generation in order to engage them in consuming healthy food, taking more physical exercises, and also provision of healthy foods at school restaurants are sure solutions.
After progressively practicing writing in English for a couple of months, I can confidently say that I am an excellent writer. I no longer make common grammatical errors that occurred in my earlier essays. I have learned the different methods of writing and citrating, especially in MLA style. As a result, I feel more comfortable about writing in English than I was during the beginning of the semester.