Starter- In Support Groups
My arms flail and my legs convulse. My pulse skyrockets as sweat drips down my forehead. Rather than dial search and rescue or even get out his first aid kit, my brother rolls the camera and begins narrating in an Australian accent: “We’re coming up on a wild creature,” he begins as he slowly pedals closer. “I’ve got to be very, very careful about how I approach this beast. Hers is one of the rarest. This is, folks, what 30 days of bikepacking through the desert can do to an otherwise sane homo sapien.”
I am not in fact suffering from some deadly snake bite. Rather, I had reached the top of a monster climb and, overcome with joy at seeing the San Juan Mountains again after nearly a month in the desert, I pumped some Anderson Paak through my iPhone and had a solo dance party.
Before you judge, consider this: Who hasn’t danced euphorically at the sight of alpenglow on mountain peaks or felt a calming sense of clarity and focus while sitting on a canyon rim? Each of us has a certain landscape or particular place that fills our soul, fulfills our hopes, restores us to our true nature. It reminds us of our connection to nature – that we are a part of it, not separate from it. And it unites us with others who share that same connection. Connection to a place heals us.
This I learned from bikepacking with my big brother.
I know some of you worked with Jess at the beginning of the summer so I don’t want my lessons to be redundant for you. I am going to be using many of the same brainstorming exercises she used with you for others. If you find this useful, participate. If you’re ready to start writing, you can just start writing today. But please participate at least through the sample essay read-alouds as you can provide helpful tips for your support group.
Types of College Essays- A quick guide (page 6)
Let’s spend some time really looking at these types of essays.
Sample Essay Read-aloud:
First: We'll read "Breaking up with Mom- Type C" together
Then, you'll read ONE more with your group
Choose one of the sample essays linked above in blue (beginning on page 7) to read. As you read, look for the following four things mentioned above and then when the reading is done, we'll discuss them.
The Best Two Brainstorming Exercises Ever (according to the College Essay Guy)
(these each take about 10 minutes. We'll do them as a whole class, but if you've already done them and are ready to write, see below)
Ready to write?
More Brainstorming Techniques
Read some more Animas student examples
Ashley's Bears Ears Bikepacking trip article published in the Gulch for some examples of a personal narrative with descpriptive language
Humanities teacher at Animas High School