English was not my first language, even though I was born in the United States. My parents spoke only Vietnamese to me, so I struggled with English when I entered elementary school. I had to take an ESL class, and that helped, but only a little.
My literacy narrative will trace my experiences with the English language – my struggles and my triumphs.
In order to share my story, I’ll start from the trauma of my third-grade spelling bee. I was given the word “beyond” to spell. I remember my biggest crush, Eduardo Garcia II, sitting behind me, and I felt him watching me. Total flirt. I remembered my classmates saying that he liked me! So, obviously, I needed to impress him somehow. My turn came up and Ms. Holly gave me my word. I was ALMOST correct, but I added “ed,” so that I ended up spelling “beyonded.” Back then, I always got my endings mixed up; sometimes words with “ed” didn’t sound like they ended with “ed.”
Everyone laughed – including Eduardo. Talk about a stab in the heart. I ran away, sat in a bathroom stall until one of my best friends came in to coax me out of my misery. Ms. Holly forced everyone to apologize, and afterwards, Eduardo came up to me, personally, to say that he was sorry.
After that I will detail my journey to improve my grasp of the English language. I’ll include fifth grade, when my writing was still in development, when I wrote my first short story and had it completely torn apart by my teacher. I’ll include sixth grade, which is when I really got into reading Harry Potter, and learned how to write. I’ll jump to high school – the time when I felt my writing reaching a constant momentum. Then I’ll breeze through my years in college and talk about the confidence I have gained in writing and my plans to become a writer in the future.
Update – Rough, preliminary storyboard