10 Literacy Narrative

“literacy means joining a specific community through understanding the issues it considers important and developing the capacity to participate in conversations about those issues.” –Anne Ruggles Gere

This type of personal narrative will allow you to examine yourself as a reader, writer, or learner in multiple contexts. This process will deepen your understanding of how you have been a member of, or influenced by, various communities and contexts.

You can choose to focus on literacy in the traditional reading/writing/language sense. This would involve highlighting a few significant events in your development as a reader, writer, or language user (or a combination thereof) and explaining why these events are connected and meaningful.

Or, you can explore an alternative learning experience. Think about the “unwritten rules” of a certain community, culture, a skill, or an activity (technology, workplaces, athletics, family history, special interest group, and countless others). How did you learn the skill or activity? What missteps did you take along the way? What lesson did you learn from a transitional moment in your life? With either option, your final product should take the form of a personal narrative. You may include visual elements such as photographs to enhance your narrative, but it is not required and does not count toward the overall length.

Key elements:

  • Specific examples are always more effective than generalizations in a literary essay. Put
    your readers in the scene so we can experience what you describe.
  • You will have to be selective and choose a couple of the most memorable experiences related to your theme. No 2 to 3 page essay can tell a person’s entire history. Make your words count.

Student Essay Models on the next page


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Music in Your Words Copyright © 2023 by Amy Minervini is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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