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Starting Letters

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Tiamat Fox

on 19 August 2013

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Transcript of Starting Letters

I think I started learning letters when I was in Kindergarten. I do not remember it but learning letters is important. It is the first step to any writing. Identifying letters means you can read and write and spell (though rarely in my case). Learning how to write letter is the one of the most basic steps to written communication, right after learning the language.
In my school we learned how to write in something called D'Nealian. It was like regular print, but curvier so it lead into cursive quite well.
Starting Letters
When I first learned how to type I was in first grade (I think), and everybody took a class in it. All the computers were set up in a U type position, but with right angles instead of curves. We all had black desktop computers and they faced out so the teacher could watch us all at one time. There was some contradiction about how many fingers to use and that made me frustrated. I once misspelled the word princess and when I looked at spell check, I chose Princes, still not what I wanted.
At the time I did not grasp the importance of learning how to type. I now know that without typing, everything would take longer. Being able to put my ideas into a document that I could edit easily was and still is incredibly valuable.
Typing Part 1
Writing Class
For a long time I hated Writing. I would always dread it. I know now that it was because if I wrote too much at a time, my hand would cramp up, and I did not like to type because I was slow. I could come up with good ideas about what to write and even wording, but putting onto a page (digital or otherwise) was hard and sometimes painful.
Around the summer before sixth grade I was diagnosed with ADD. During the testing I found out many more things than just my diagnoses. Something that the psychologist told me was that I did not hold my pencil correctly and that was causing my hand cramps. This information meant that there was not only a physical reason for my distaste for writing, but a changeable reason.
When they told me that I was holding my pencil wrong I was very shocked. I knew that different people held their pencils differently, but I thought my way was acceptable too. Afterward it took me a long time to adjust to holding a pencil in a weird way (to me anyway).
I, to this day, still have trouble with holding my writing utensil correctly, but now I know. I try to change my grip as much as possible and finally enjoy writing.
Getting Tested for ADD
Typing Part 2
The other advancement in my typing skills was in middle school (seventh or eighth grade) when I was home schooled. My mom signed me up for an online typing curriculum called typingweb.
It would put letter combinations up on the screen and I would type them in. Below the letter combinations was a digital keyboard that would show where the letter was on the keyboard by highlighting it in blue. They as well had an outline of hands next to the keyboard which would highlight, also in blue, the correct finger I should use to type that letter. Then it would time how long it took me to do a whole page of letter combinations. This website helped me a great deal and is the main reason I can type as well as I can today.
I was so excited when I could type without constantly looking at my fingers. Since then I have slipped a little and look at my hands more, but I am better than I was.
Eighth grade was my second year homeschooling and seventh grade did not go well. I do not have enough self motivation to not have specific direction, so I signed up for some home school classes, one of which was a writing class. We had a good curriculum and a great teacher. We met on Fridays in a New Point Learning Center who let us use their building. I took the class with at first one and then later two other people. Our classroom was small with only one table and a whiteboard, which was usually cold. On the table was a cup with pens and pencils in case we forgot ours.
That is when I really learned how to write. We studied all sorts of writing, mostly descriptions of things, but also journalism and research papers. Almost everything I know now about how to write well is from that class.
Writing papers for school (ninth grade) helped me develop my non-fiction writing skills. From my writing class I got reasonably good at writing stories or scenes that I make up, but my educational papers and such were mediocre. Many days were spent in my dad's office (he works at Forsyth Tech in the physics department) typing up papers, the day before they are due and sending them in. It was then that I learned the power of filler and refined my skill for it.
My dad's office at school is right across from the Biology lab room and is really small. One of the walls is covered with shelves and filing cabinets and such, two walls have doors, the other has a giant cork board. His desk has his computer on it but is almost always eclipsed by papers. It is very cold in their so I often put on my dad's sweatshirt that he leaves in there which smells like him, and a blanket. I kick off my shoes to get more comfortable.
Writing Papers for School
Terrific Writing Timeline of Tiamat
Reading books has helped me with writing fiction just as much as anything else. Seeing all these writing techniques I know and new ones that I have not seen before in use was tremendous.
I went to Disney World this summer with my best friend and on the car ride she read aloud the book Divergent (which I read later for myself). It is a GREAT book. The writing style is first person and describes the main characters feelings extremely well, which really made her very three dimension.
I was sitting in the back seat of my car with my best friend while she finished reading the book. Hearing that style (which was wonderful) in a sense taught me how to write the book that I have been trying to write and fill in the element that was missing. When she was done I sat and thought about the book while she fell asleep. Since I wasn't doing anything and I did not have to entertain her, I asked for my brother's computer. I then wrote the best start to my book that I had ever written. The seats in the car were light tan fuzzy fabric which had become uncomfortable from lack of movement. I had a blanket over my legs to keep them warm. The music playing in the car was on a loop between the Smash soundtrack and The JaneDear Girls. I still think about how/what to write which was helped by the books I have read.
Reading Books
It all started in geometry last year when I got a project about bugs. We had to write a short story about a geometry bug. My story was about bugs that were biologically made to discover math for the humans and were separated into different groups based on their type of math.
I fiddled with it A LOT and came up with a good plot in my opinion. I am trying to write it now. My goal is to finish my book sometime by the time I am done with college. I have a basic out line with characters. All is left is to actually write!
Finish My Book
To be honest I have not yet decided what I want to do with my life job wise. I am seriously considering a career in business (possibly Hotel management). In any business, especially in management, budgets must be done. I think that would be the worst part of the job, but necessary. It will be hard at first, but with anything it will get easier. It is good practice for at home and managing my own budget.
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