Reflective Journal



In this two-page, double-spaced reflective journal, you will do a reflective analysis that covers three goals, to:

  1. Improve writing skills.
  2. Apply the General Education “Lifelong Learning and Self-Development: GE Category E” skill of “Reflection – that reviews prior learning (past experiences inside and outside of the classroom) in depth to reveal significantly changed perspectives about educational and life experiences, which provide foundation for expanded knowledge, growth, and maturity over time.”
  3. Complete a practical social-ethical project in the field as participant observers, in which project they develop the ability to apply general knowledge to an understanding of specific actions in the world, and, conversely, the ability to abstract from the specifics of action in the world to the theoretical. –Participant observation is the practice of learning from a culture through taking part in its activities and making conclusions about the culture based upon that experience. Your assignment is to experience nature by utilizing two-spirit Indigenous teachings to structure and analyze your future nature experiences. Pick an instance in the coming weeks in which you will experience and observe the natural world around you. Let a class reading lead you to newly experience nature. Answer the following prompt:

Putting senses or metaphors/similes in every line and sentence, vividly describe a brand-new experience of nature on page one; then on page two both compare and contrast your ethnic religious/philosophical understanding of that same nature experience with insights gained from a class Native American reading.

On page one, write a creative story about a new experience in vivid detailed writing full of senses, similes or metaphors. Note on the grading rubric below that every sentence and line must have senses or metaphors to get the full 2.5 points for that category. Do not “introduce” or “conclude” the page one prose with boring analysis or summary. On the second page, relate your experience of nature story with both a comparative and a contrasting analysis of your religious/philosophical understanding of that nature experience with that of any one American Indian nature writings from class. Be sure to name the tribe of the author and name your ethnic religion/philosophy as well. For example, you might Agree with laFavor’s idea of Mother Earth but not with her idea of eating spirits. Create one paragraph for a comparison and a separate paragraph for the contrast and quote the same author in each paragraph. Please keep the following in mind as you construct your essay:

  1. Organization (2.5 points): The first page is a pure creative writing sharing of your nature experience. The second is a scholarly religious studies analysis of that experience. You’ll only need topic sentences on the second page for the two paragraphs, one to compares and one that contrasts ethnic nature beliefs.
  2. Content (2.5 points): emphasize five senses, metaphors, and similes on page one. Both compare and contrast your cultural identity and religious/philosophical nature beliefs with that offered in a class reading on page two. Be sure to mention your ethnic and religious/philosophical identity on page two.
  3. Citations (2.5 points): You must use two “short quotes” with page references (p.1, 2, etc.) from Driskill et al. or another Native American class text on page two. For full credit, quote exact words; don’t just paraphrase. List the work cited in a bibliography on the page two. No cover sheet is necessary. No separate bibliography page is needed. Put everything on two pages as much as you can.
  4. Grammar and Style (2.5 points): Correct grammar, an evolved personal voice, lots of sensory details, and variety in sentence structure and subject will improve your overall writing style.

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550 words
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