Some School Assignments

In a dust-covered box under the guest bed I found a treasure of memorabilia from my past. Several of the items are old assignments that I kept for one reason or the other.

The first is titled How to Type a Term Paper and I must have copied something for typing class because there is no way I wrote this in high school. It was for extra credit and I received red OK on it. I suspect I kept it in case I ever needed to type a term paper in college, then I would know exactly how to type it. Thank goodness the world’s students now have word processing programs.

The second was an assignment for my 9th grade English class and consisted of two paragraphs about the same house. One was written positively about the house and the other negatively. I think it might have been for our propaganda unit. I thought I’d blogged about that unit before, but I cannot find it through a search.

I do remember the teacher, who I liked except for this one thing, often had students grade each other’s papers. I didn’t know Mike well, but he always seemed to be a kind boy.

Mike Giardino [the student who graded the paper who sadly died recently]

                     B+ Because it is a good paper

English 3-4                                                      Dona Patrick
Period 4                                                         Oct. 12, 1972

Paragraph one -- for the house: 
     This house is a great buy! If you like older houses this is the one for you. In this twenty-year-old, two-story house there are six beautiful rooms -- including one large master bedroom, two other bedrooms, and a huge living room with a fireplace and wall-to-wall carpeting. It also has a double-car garage. Outside the house on the large, 150x200 ft., lot there is a terraced lawn, four tall fir trees in front and three lems* in back. This priceless gem is within five blocks of the shopping center; two blocks from the bus stop; right across from the grade school; and less than a mile from a picnic area and public playground. A doctor lives right next door. The heaters were put in very recently. The price is only $12,500.

*elms I guess [written in pencil]

Paragraph two -- against the house:
     If you buy this twenty-year-old run-down house you will live to regret it -- unless you enjoy fixing roofs and rusty, leaky gutters. You'd have loads of fun yelling at grade school children, telling them to not to cut across the lawn, break through the hedge, trample your flowers, and/or slide or roll down the terrace if you enjoy that sort of thing. There are four giant fir trees in the front that block the sun light from the house. They are a blessing though in a way because they also block the front of the house from public view while you are fixing the chimney and fireplace. You'll love your neighbors with eight children, two cats, and not to mention a dog who has marked your back lawn as part of his never-ending territory. The cost -- $12,500, new carpeting, all the changes will cost you a small fortune.

This last paper (for today) was from my psychology class in college. I vividly remember writing the paper and doing the research and experiment. It was some of the worst days of my life so far. I was painfully shy and this paper required us to talk to random strangers and recruit them to do an experiment. My partner was the opposite. He was a DJ on our local radio station and a few years older than I. He was outgoing and did not understand my fear of interacting with strangers.

The paper was titled Stimulus Sampling in a Discrimination Learning Situation. I earned a B on the oral report, An A- on the paper and an A- for the mid-term. I guess each of us wrote our own paper.

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