Back to our Roots

Over this Fall semester, we have explored different forms of literature, writing styles, and engaged in less screen time. Writing most assignments on paper allowed us to get a sense of our childhood. In elementary school we would do everything on paper, which offered us practice on our penmanship. Now that we have moved to almost everything online, our handwriting skills have declined. Completing drafts of our assignments on paper has allowed us more room for editing. Since we are writing on paper, it is easier to go in and cross out anything that we need to edit. This allows for more detailed revisions and for our work to be more efficient.

We also spent time examining different covers of articles. One that particularly stood out was a collaborative assignment amongst our peers from Writing Analytically. It was to discuss and write about a cover from the magazine “The New Yorker”. This cover was known as “The Competition”, by Ian Falconer. Falconer states that “producing a close description of the thing you are analyzing is one of the best ways to begin because the act of describing causes you to notice more and triggers analytical thinking”(84). This showed that we as a group needed to analyze the cover together and come up with what we thought it was trying to portray. We also took a look at a picture from “The Falling Man” by Tom Junod. This photograph is claimed to be the only picture of any of the 9/11 victims. It shows a man falling out of one of the towers. Not only does it show that, it also shows how still the world was. By capturing that picture it can show the world another point of view of what went on that day. By reviewing these images I was able to practice trying to find a deeper meaning to what the author wants us to see.  

The annotated bibliography and final essay assignment was challenging.Going from never having produced an annotated bibliography before to having to complete one for such a big portion of our grade was nerve racking. Overall, I believe that my partner and I did a really good job with our paper. We followed each direction completely and went back to re-read the directions constantly to make sure we were completing it correctly. By doing that, and completing all the steps thoroughly it made us confident that we will receive a good grade for the assignment. I do wish we had more class time with guidance to work on this and more opportunities to seek feedback. By planning our work out by hand, it did really benefit us because we had everything right in front of us. We were able to easily cross out what we didn’t want to include and then add what we wanted. This came in handy when we went to transport our assignment to the screen and finally type it all out. We can see how handwriting things before we type them out is a skill that has gotten lost over the years. This class has made me realize that those skills are useful and now I will continue to use them for my classes to come.

Throughout this class we have been able to work on multiple assignments with our peers. This has allowed us to broaden our horizons and talk to people we maybe wouldn’t normally speak to. This has also allowed us to get more ideas on topics and share with others. Thus allowing and giving us stronger and more broad answers. Working with my classmates has been beneficial to my development as a writer. It makes our answers to questions stronger and instead of one answer we can have four and mesh all of them together for one solid response. In my future classes, I will be more open to working with my peers because I know that working together is beneficial. 

Therefore, throughout all of the skills that I have obtained in this class this semester all of these assignments have contributed majorly to my improvement as a writer. I have benefited from writing assignments by hand, and my penmanship is slowly getting better from all the practice. Working collaboratively in groups has allowed my classmates and I to learn how to work and think as a group. These are just a few of the key things that I have benefited from this semester. By starting to handwrite my drafts and working collaboratively with my peers, I feel as if I have grown as a person and increased my skills as a student.

Work Cited

Falconer, Ian. The Competition. Magazine Cover. The New Yorker, 9 Oct. 2000.

Junod, Tom. “The Falling Man.” Esquire, vol. 140, no. 3, Sept. 2003, pp. 176+. Gale Academic OneFile Select,

Chornovas,Rachel and Leary,V. Teen Girls vs. Social Media. 2022,

“Writing on Computers vs. Writing on Paper.” Writing Analytically, 8th edition. Wadsworth/Cengage, 2019. pp. 124-25.


Teen Girls vs. Social Media

Teen Girls vs. Social Media

In the article, “Facebook Knows Instagram is Toxic for Teen Girls” researchers Jeff Horwitz, Deepa Seetharaman, and Georgia Wells conducted a study over an eighteen month period that they entitled “teen mental health deep dive.” What they had discovered is that the app known as Instagram is used for showcasing one’s body and lifestyle. Social media is a huge part of today’s world and as teenage girls ourselves we have experienced first hand its effects. We scroll through Instagram or Tik Tok and see girls our age or older with what we believe to be our “dream bodies”. This then allows us to believe that this is what we’re supposed to look like and it is causing teen girls’ self esteem and mental health to decrease dangerously. 

An experience we hear about in the article is about a girl named Anastasia Vlasova who joined Instagram at the age of thirteen and instantly spent hours a day scrolling through looking at so called influencers. She then began to notice all these fit bodies and how a woman could do 100 burpees in ten minutes. Vlasova then develops an eating disorder that she traces back to the time she spent on Instagram. By seeing that these fitness influencers receive so many likes and comments, it is obvious why teen girls would try to be like them. With the power that social media holds over this generation people believe that whatever you see online is what you should be doing as well. Teen girls have been proven to be the most influenced by Instagram due to the idea of looking perfect. The pressure that they feel to fit in in this world is immaculate, but the pressures of social media are only making it all worse. One thing that needs to be more emphasized on social media is that just because someone looks perfect doesn’t mean they are.

As teenage girls ourselves we have personally experienced what it is like to be influenced by what we see on social media. For example, every year around the time of the holidays we watch videos on Youtube or Tiktok to see what others are asking for Christmas gifts to make sure that we don’t miss out on the latest trends. Why do we care what others want? No matter how many times we ask ourselves this for some reason we will still continue to do it. 

The American Journal of Epistemology conducted a study based on how mental health develops in young people and how social media affects it. The main conclusion of the study was that generation z mainly communicates through posting pictures and receiving likes online. A major point that the article made was that young adults’ brains are still developing and are not matured enough to have a high self-esteem. Since teens are so influenced by what they see online this could lead them to unhealthy tactics like inappropriate sexual behavior, suicidal thoughts, and eating disorders. These are all things that I have seen occur around me, and I believe a main cause of this could be from social media. 

Researcher Mabel Yiu states in the article “New Studies Show that Social Media Has Become A Global Mental Health Problem for Younger Generations” that she has witnessed firsthand what social media standards and cyber-bullying can have on the self-esteem of young girls. She has worked as a licensed therapist working in the specific fields of suicide and sexual assault has concluded that a main cause of suicidal thoughts in teens is the idea of a “perfect image” which has caused people to take there life. There is no definition of perfect in the world we live in. We can each have our own idea of what perfect is but it is different to everyone. The person that you see on Instagram that one day receiving so much praise for their photo could actually be one of the most depressed people. You never really know what is going on in that person’s life behind the screen and that is something that young adults fail to realize. 

In today’s day and age social media has taken over almost everyone’s lives. Teenage girls have been drastically affected by this and as a result have had a lot of negative effects. Looking deeper into these negative aspects we can better see into modern teenage girls minds. The main issue with this is that this online criticism causes them to overthink. With new age pressures like cyberbullying and online dating almost 30% of teen girls are reported to have anxiety. Things that you post like where you are, who you are with and what you are doing are judged by everyone and puts pressure on teenage girls to be “perfect.” They look up to influence it such as the Kardashians and Ariana Grande. 

When it comes to communication it seems like all thoughtful communication was thrown out the window and replaced with emojis and short texts. Parents are often left in the dark because these young girls dont feel comfortable sharing how they feel. In film on demand’s “Teenage Girls Open Up About the “Constant Pressure” of Social Media (aka Behind the Glass) the teen girls share their experiences, thoughts and feelings then their moms are revealed to have been there the whole time. 

Annotated Bibliography

ABC News. “Teen Girls Open Up about the ‘Constant Pressure’ of Social Media (Aka Behind the 

Glass).” Log In – Films On Demand =146096.

In the video presentation “Tern Girls Open Up about the ‘Constant Pressure’ of Social Media (Aka Behind the Glass)” we get to see how real girls feel about the situations they are put into in today day and age regarding social media. These are real girls with real experiences so the source is reliable when trying to see what young girls in this age group go through when it comes to bullying, harassment, and social media pressures today. 

ABC News is a division of the American Broadcast network ABC. Films on demand have hundreds of different articles that vary in topic. They have several articles about Teens habits and attitudes and social media in general across their website. They are produced by ABC news, the news division of the American broadcast network ABC. In addition to their division television program ABC News has radio and digital outlets including a radio station, live news, and various podcasts. It began in 1943 as a political broadcasting website. The Walt Disney company also owns a significant amount of ABC News. They are a known organization throughout the United States of America. 

Horwitz, Jeff, Deepa Seetharaman, and Georgia Wells. “Facebook Knows Instagram is Toxic for Teen Girls, Company Documents Show.” Wall Street Journal, Sep 14, 2021. ProQuest,

In the article “Facebook Knows Instagram is Toxic for Teen Girls” journalists Jeff Horwitz, Georgia Wells, and Deepa Seetharaman elaborate on a study that they have conducted over three years. The study was created to see how the app Facebook affects teenagers and young adults. The main thing that was discovered was that use of Instagram is causing harm to teenage girls mentally. Teenage girls are using the app to compare and criticize themselves on their looks.

Journalist Jeff Horwitz works as a reporter for The Wall Street Journal his job at Facebook is controlling how the world views the company. Horwitz has received recognition multiple times for an award called a Society for Advancing Business Editing and Writing. He produced articles with two of his colleagues about the struggle that Facebook had with police hate in the country of India that was called Gerald Loeb Award. Georgia Wells is also a reporter for The Wall Street Journal and she speaks with how social media is helpful but also abusive to people. She has been recognized from multiple organizations such as the New York Press Club, the Society for Advancing Business Editing and Writing, the George Polk Awards, and also the Deadline Club. Deepa Seetharaman covers technology and politics as a reporter for The Wall Street Journal. She published stories of how technology companies and their team work with politics and how society reacts.

Richtel, Matt. “Blogs vs. Term Papers,” The New York Times, 20 Jan. 2012,


The article “Blogs versus term papers” by Matt Richtel Braves the debate between new and old technology. Which still takes us through different professors around the world experiences with modern versus old-fashioned ways of teaching. Looking deeper into this article there are many professors who give examples of how students are affected by this new way of teaching. There are good and bad aspects to both sides.

Professor Lunsford studied from 2001 to 2007 should students’ writing abilities and passion start to evolve as new technology made its way into the classroom. This new technology included blogs, tweets and other forms of online writing that could be incorporated by professors into their lessons. professors all over the world are looking for the perfect balance of old versus new technology.

All of these Professors Teach in schools around the United States of America. Because of this, all of these professors were able to collect this information and put it into one big article about the pros and cons of writing in the new generations form. 

“New Studies Show that Social Media Has Become A Global Mental Health Problem for Younger Generations: A recently concluded study shows that social media is gradually becoming a facilitator of mental health problems across the globe. The Women’s Health Institute is now looking to help teens who struggle from social media addiction.” PR Newswire, Mar 29, 2018. ProQuest,

In the article, “New Studies Show that Social Media Has Become A Global Mental Health Problem for Younger Generations”, it focuses on mental health in young adults and their specific experiences with social media. By elaborating on how young adults idolize the people they see on social media as “perfection” it allows them to build low self esteems for themselves which is doing detrimental harm to their mental health. Mabel Yiu is the author of this article and was inspired by witnessing the damage firsthand of the damage that social media can have on young girls.

Mabel Yiu has been working as a licensed marriage and family therapist for years and has specifically specialized in suicide and a crisis counselor, a sexual assault counselor, and also a parenting instructor. Yiu also work at the University of San Francisco and also at a community college in San Jose, California as a clinical supervisor at a health clinic. She is also the founder of Women’s Therapy Institute in Palo Alto, California.


Is Scrabble a fun game?

In the article, “Scrabble is a Louisy Game” by Jonathan Kay, he writes about the popular board game known as Scrabble. This game is an extremely popular board game for all ages. By explaining how Scrabble has recently added words to it’s dictionary, we can see how such a classic game is beginning to modernize itself within the times.

Kay begins to tell us about his opinion of the game. He states that, It’s not that I don’t like words. I love words. But what I love about words is their meaning and etymology, which no real Scrabble player bothers studying, because such details are completely irrelevant to scoring.” This tells us how he feels about the idea of the board game. As we play Scrabble as a class every Friday we also focus more on gaining the points rather than thinking about what the word means. With all board games the ultimate goal is to win, not think about your move. Kay also brings up how even the top Scrabble players in the world do not speak English. Which to me I find to be strange because why would people of other languages be playing a game in English. Being good at a game like Scrabble causes a lot of thinking and practice. You need to be able to make up words with the seven random letters that you drew from a bag. What if none of them can make up a playable word? That is a question that I ask myself when we play as a class. 

Overall, Jonathan Kay goes on to tell his opinion on the famous board game of Scrabble. By explaining stories and telling experiences of people who are known to be Scrabble “experts”. Kay was able to show different perspectives of the game. He showed how he was not a huge fan of the game but he listed people who happen to be very fond of the game. This game can either be fun or stressful, it is up to the person but just like everything else it is up to one’s opinion.

Work Cited

Kay,Jonathan. “Scrabble is a Louisy Game.” The Wall Street Journal, 4 Oct. 2018. ProQuest.


Literacy Narrative

Literacy Narrative

Imagine this: you’re sitting down on a dark green bench in an old smelly hockey rink and your soon to be stepdad is tying freshly sharpened hockey skates to your feet. My preschool friends and I were all there that Saturday morning at nine a.m. to start a sport that would later change our lives for the best. Five year old me wasn’t too excited about it, but all my friends were doing it so I was just happy to be there. Hockey played an important role in my life because it taught me that hard work really pays off in the end.

Fast forward nine years later, and it is August 2018, and those same girls who I started learning to skate with are now preparing for our highschool tryout coming up in November. After years of youth games and club hockey tournaments in Lake Placid, New York, we are now competing against each other for the five open spots on the varsity team. There were six of us freshmen trying out for varsity, but the one person who doesn’t make it will have to play for the J.V. team with the girls who can barely skate. Those three days of try outs I will never forget the nerves and amount of sweat I had. I felt as if I had never worked so hard to impress a group of coaches before. At the end of the third try out, we all had an individual meeting with our head coach to discuss our placements. I was the fifth person to get called in, and this gave me a good feeling because I wasn’t last. Coach Dennis looked me straight in the eyes and told me, “We see the amount of work you put in but, you are trying too hard and you need to loosen up, therefore we are placing you on J.V. to be able to work on that.” My heart was crushed, I felt as if my life was over. I seriously thought about not going back to the rink for practice, but my mom said “I needed to go to show everyone I am not a poor team player.” 

So I showed up to practice every single day even on the New Years Eve optional practice where I was the only one in attendance. At the last practice of the J.V. season, I hear Coach Dennis yell from his office “Rach can I see you for a second.” My heart immediately fell into my stomach. I walk over holding my sweaty helmet and my gloves that had developed a hole in the right palm. He begins talking about the snowstorm we were supposed to get that coming weekend, that’s when my leg started to bounce up and down from the nerves I had. “ I appreciate your dedication to the team and I have seen how much you want this. A few weeks ago when we J.V. played Braintree ( a team that was not advanced at all) you had scored four goals in the first ten minutes of the first period.” I was nervous to hear his feedback but he said he wanted to give me a spot on varsity. He told me with a firm voice trying not to smile, “I started to think about your sportsmanship.. Then I saw the plays you were trying to make, so the other girls could have the opportunity to score. You gave them their first ever goals and I could see the smile on their faces. I believe you belong on the roster and I would like to add you for the rest of the season.”  I was trying to control my excitement, “thank you so much Coach, I won’t let you down,”. I was so happy, even though I knew I wouldn’t be getting much playing time. 

After over two months of hard practices and lots of sweat, I had discovered something about myself. No matter what roadblocks get thrown at you, your hard work should never stop. Whether that be not making a sports team or not receiving the position at your dream job, what matters more is the response. If I had quit in the moment that Coach Dennis told me I was on J.V. I would never have played hockey again, taken a trip to the state finals two times in four years, or created amazing memories with my teammates. Most importantly, I would not have proved to myself that hard work and dedication does pay off in the long run.

Photo was taken after our big quarterfinals win that led us to the semi-finals game last year.
Photo from my team and I last practice before our State Championship game this past season.
Photo of our victory from the semi-finals game this past season.
Copy of rough draft of Literacy Narrative.