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Here is the first of many This I Believe essays: Be the Jellyfish An umbrella can be many things.It can provide shelter in rain, be an elaborate fashion accessory, or help you fly across 1950’s London in style (but only if you’re Mary Poppins).
Despite this, my senior year of college I began to take singing lessons, with the intent of auditioning for the local community theater’s production of Disney’s The Little Mermaid.
After months of voice lessons, the day of my audition had arrived.
I could lie, tell my friends and family I tried my best, but didn’t make it.
But I remembered the work my vocal coach had put into my struggling singing voice, the support my family had for me, and I finally decided my commitment to this audition was bigger than myself.
People with a variety of different backgrounds wrote 350-500 word essays about a single core belief, complete with personal stories about how they realized or were reaffirmed in their belief.
Essay Umbrella Graphic Organizer
There are a variety of beliefs that are discussed, like: “Always Go to the Funeral” or “Be Cool to the Pizza Dude.” When I asked for example essays from a fellow 9th grade English teacher, she gave me three of her favorite ones. At the end of the podcast, the classroom was at a standstill.For me, an umbrella is a symbol of a time when I went outside my comfort zone and became a jellyfish.When I was little, my biggest aspiration in life was to be a singer. My singing voice was like a mixture of a mortally wounded walrus and a grinding engine.I sat outside the red-brick theater in my car contemplating my choices.Hours ago, my vocal coach assured me I was quote “probably okay enough to have a shot,” but I still thought seriously about driving away.I held a large plastic umbrella, covered in flashing Christmas lights, with holographic streamers hanging down on all sides. Trying out for a musical was exactly the opposite of my comfort zone.Miraculously, I had made it into the cast of The Little Mermaid musical. My average evening is the kind that involves books, warm blankets, and cuddling with my dogs.The director had looked past my train wreck of a voice and seen into the depths of my soul. When my students ask me to tell them the absolute craziest things that I did in college, my response is, “I skipped class once, and I wasn’t even sick.” It was nerve wracking to walk into the audition on that fateful day. Looking back, I guess the worst thing that would have happened is that I wouldn’t have--and that would have been okay, too.I believe that everyone should push themselves to try new things.So, when I assign my kids work to do, I know it needs to be worthwhile. Every time my students write an essay, I write one alongside them.They don’t have time for crosswords or word searches, worksheets that I won’t read, or tests that aren’t accurate to their learning. To be fair, this started out as an endeavor because it is currently my first year of teaching and I need examples essays.