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“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy”-Martin Luther King Jr. It is when a challenge comes that you determine how strong you are and the willpower which you have to succeed, everybody can be successful when challenges are easy, but it really counts when life is hard. Coming to James Weldon Johnson Middle School has been the biggest turning point in my life so far, before I was a shy fifth grader, but when I came to this magnificent middle school I met encouraging teachers who helped me change for the better.
Life in fifth grade at Susie E. Tolbert was very challenging, and to make it tougher I didn’t have very many friends. I was very shy and scared to go talk to people to make friends. At lunch one day a girl came to talk to me, and I quickly gathered my things and sprinted out of the cafeteria! The ones who were my friends were not true, and were their only there because of my materialistic things.
I was very introverted and scared to go talk to people, and make new friends. In Language Arts, Paideia Seminars were my least favorite because I would always get zeros, I would never talk in the discussion and teachers never pushed me to succeed. My teachers didn’t really care about me either; they never urged me to answer questions and left me alone to be that one lonely kid.
Going to James Weldon Johnson Middle School was about to be the biggest challenge in my life, and I still wouldn’t have any friends to help me through the struggle.
“Mom please I don’t want to go, I don’t have any friends and there are way too many people there”, these words rang around the house every morning before I went to school. Two weeks after school started, Mrs. Peterson, my Language Arts teacher, asked me to stay after class so that she could talk to me. Upon hearing these words, fear rang in my mind, but unwillingly I stayed and awaited my fate!
She told me that she noticed I did not have very many friends, and that she was going to help me by making me talk more in class so that I could make some associates. When I got to class the next day, I was called on without even raising my hand to respond to a question, soon kids started talking to me because they found out how “cool” I actually was. This opened my eyes to a whole new world, and one which I actually had friends in! Coming to James Weldon Johnson Middle School has changed my life around for the better. I have changed myself from a dreary person, to a fun and more interesting individual.
I am now more extroverted and talk to more people, which enables me to meet new friends. I am encouraged to ask and answer question in Science or History class, which allows me to learn at a whole new level. When confused in science, now I simply raise my hand and ask “Is Plasma a state of Matter?” Instead of doubting myself and feeling unconfident. I am very fortunate for my teachers who have helped me to reach my inner-self and bring out the outgoing person that I am today.
I used to stay at home every weekend, but now I meet my friends over the weekend to hang-out and play basketball or football. I have been able to meet new people and stick up for myself in times of need. Going to James Weldon Johnson has made me a more confident human being, and provided me with the self-esteem required to achieve great things. I have been able to meet amazing new friends, who push me to succeed in every aspect possible.
James Weldon Johnson has really changed my life from an introverted person to meeting encouraging teachers, resulting in becoming a more gregarious person. I now believe in myself and know that I can overcome any challenge if I put my mind to it. My friends and my teachers have encouraged me to talk to more people, and this has increased the numbers of friends I have vastly. Now it is time to move on to a new challenge, and which with time I will eventually triumph.
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