Reflection Section

(See what I did there^^^)

Denton - kdentsxo - Journey Log Reflection

me in my prime

When I heard that we were doing weekly reflections, I groaned internally. I couldn’t believe that as college students, we were still being forced to journal our progress. It felt childish and stupid to me.

However, I was utterly surprised by how much I ended up enjoying the journey logs. I took the approach of making my logs like small blog posts. This, without a doubt, is what made me enjoy them. My first couple journey logs were some of my favorite pieces of writing that I’ve ever done. Only one thing I’ve written has compared to these, honestly, and it was a poem I wrote when I was a sophomore in high school called “The Only Thing I Know For Sure”. I still have the document saved on my computer because it was the only piece I had ever been really proud of.

some of my most cherished photos

These logs, especially "homesick", are something I want to cherish for a long time. Some of the later logs such as "origin story" or "commitment phobe" are definitely not my favorite and are probably ones I could have spent a little more time focused on.

I was also pretty wary about the habits of mind. They were kind of aggravating to add into my writing. I thought it would be easier to just write what was on my mind instead of trying to write based on these concept. Except, I was pleasantly surprised… again.

The habits of mind helped my focus on one thing that happened that week by creating a narrower scope of what I should be writing about. I knew that if I was using metacognition, I needed to write about a time that I was actively self reflecting and what came because of it.

The four that were most important or relevant to me this semester were curiosity, openness, engagement, and persistence. To me, having these habits of mind sort of gave me peace of mind for what I was already doing. For example, like a sort of mentioned in this journey log, I’ve always been one to wonder the most random things. I usually ask my step dad random questions because he 1. Is a wealth of random knowledge, and 2. Will try his best to answer me.

I’ll ask him something as random as how many acres do you think that field is and he’ll actually come up with a guess because he knows that it appeases me.

always trying to make me laugh

I’ve jokingly said that if the person I’m with can’t do that for me, they aren’t the one. I’ll never be satisfied by the answer of “I don’t know” when it comes to these random questions. And I honestly have no idea why I am like that.

But these habits of mind, especially curiosity and engagement helped me realize that I just have this need or want for these things and they are something to believe in. I think all of these habits of mind helped me this semester by giving me something to base my writings around. They gave me a sense of focus throughout the week by picking them and keeping them in the back of my mind the whole week until I sat down to write my journey log.

I honestly can’t say exactly what they’ll do for me in the future but I hope they help me to better understand myself and others. The habits of mind have helped me deeply reflect on myself and my innate behaviors but they have also challenged me to look at things from a different perspective than I had normally been using. I want these things to stay with me so that I can continue to learn more about me and how I see myself.

At the beginning, my logs were pretty personal and very detailed which I really like. They kind of went downhill when I had to switch my specialization and there were different requirements. I talked a lot about my family which wouldn’t surprise anyone who knew me. I talk about my parents and sister multiple times a day and they really know me better than anyone else so it makes sense that when I was writing about personal things that they would come up. My sister is my best friend so I’m surprised that I didn’t mention her even more so than I did.

over the years

Things in my journey logs definitely changed overtime. At the beginning they were very detailed and it was obvious that I put a lot of thought and effort into them. The later logs are pretty disappointing to me. In my opinion, they were just fluff and nothing real. My first few logs were real and things I was proud or nervous to actually write about and you can tell when you read my writing.

The other logs took a turn for the worst at "origin story". That one is interesting but it is not something I am proud to have written. I tried to get back on track but I was just too far gone it seems like. I tried to get the logs to sound like they had in the beginning but I was distracted by bigger projects and other things that I thought were more important than the logs. They kind of turned from blog entries back to just weekly reflections which are boring and not entertaining in the slightest.

I definitely had a more cynical tone at the beginning of my logs but I always tried to turn them back to something positive like I did for this one. I tended to write about myself so at the beginning they are a little weary and I ended a lot of my logs on a note where I told myself I would improve or work on something or in a way that seemed like I was at peace with the sort of internal struggle I had written about earlier.

At first, I HATED Minecraft. I was not excited in the least bit about having the entire class based on this game. Even the first build where I made a mushroom looking house was not very enjoyable and I had one of my friends there laughing with me the whole time.

I did not do any of the extra credit builds because I thought it would be torture to do optional minecraft builds but in hindsight, I sort of wish that I did. I knew I wasn’t very creative and I had never even watched someone play minecraft before so I think I really just lacked confidence in myself.

blueprints of the castle i used as a reference for my Raid 5 build

I struggled a lot with the technology side of minecraft which really made it hard to get into. I think if my laptop was better equipped to handle minecraft I would have done a little more optional building. I only made the required builds and did not do any kind of exploring in the game. I really wish I had made more of an effort to get into minecraft because when I made my villain sanctuary, I actually kind of enjoyed it. Now, I did use blueprints to help me build the entire castle and I think if I had to create it from scratch I would have hated the game. I think using the blueprints allowed me to really just get lost in the game instead of focusing on the logistics of the build which made all the difference for me.

some builds i think would be cool

I’ve even tossed around the idea of finding some other builds online to get into just for the fun of it and since I paid for an entire year of the game I might as well use it. I can still say that minecraft is not my favorite past time but it definitely was not nearly as bad as I made myself believe it was. I think that if there were a few more smaller required builds I may have been forced to get into the game earlier that I did.

Overall, I think my confidence in my creative writing improved. Now I know that I can write something that people may actually enjoy reading. I think I always had it in me but I just never felt like I could do it. I also think that the habits of mind altered the way I thought about myself and my actions which was a real eye opener for me. I think it was a good thing especially during my freshman year of college where I am just beginning to really find out who I am.

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