Examples of Students Essays

Hotel and Theme Park Essay Example

Hotel and Theme Park Essay

Earlier this year, my mum and dad decided that we would be going to Benidorm for a week at the beginning of the summer holidays – Hotel and Theme Park Essay introduction. My sister, Tara and I were so excited for the holiday that we immediately started counting down the days even though it was April and we wouldn’t be going until the end of June/start of July. The months leading up to the holiday was a whirlwind of planning what we were taking and what we were going to do while we were there.

Finally the day came and we were getting up at 3 am so we could get ready and catch the 6 o’clock plane from Edinburgh airport to Alicante airport. I remember bouncing in my seat in excitement while we were landing and letting out a squeal of happiness when we were safely on the ground and free to leave exit the plane. The first thing I felt when I departed the plane was the complete relaxation that the searing sun on my face brought to me.

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All too soon we were sitting in an overcrowded bus that would take us all to our different hotels. Our hotel was one of the first few stops as we were relatively close to the beach. On first look, the hotel (which I cannot for the life of me remember the name of) looked pretty standard. It wasn’t horrible looking however it didn’t look like the Ritz. However, once I got inside I was taken aback by how classy the reception area was. I couldn’t help but wonder if our room would be just as classy and lovely as the reception area.

My answer to that particular question was no. The room was nice enough considering we wouldn’t be spending much time in there but I couldn’t help but be disappointed by the size of our room. The thing I enjoyed the most about our room was surprisingly the bathroom, the lighting in there was absolute perfection for getting ready in the morning and evening and the shower was to die for! I could just feel all the tension in my shoulders wash away while in that shower.

Our first day in Benidorm wasn’t all that eventful, Tara and I spent most of our day out by the pool swimming (Tara) and soaking up some vitamin D (me). Eventually we had to leave the pool at about 8 o’clock for dinner which would be starting soon. The dinner the hotel served was extraordinary! It was as if they had taken a dish from every country in the world and put it into a buffet where we could just take whatever tickled our fancy!

Day two of our holiday of found us spending the day sunbathing at the beach and swimming in the sea. The water was a beautiful clear blue colour and the sand was golden. The highlight of day two for me though were the peaches that my dad bought at a fruit stall while we were walking down to the beach. They were the largest and juiciest peaches I had ever had and kept my stomach content until dinner time.

On the third and fourth days of our time in Benidorm were spent in the theme park “Terra Mitica” which translates to ‘mythical land’. The theme park was split into 5 different parts: Egypt, Greece, Iberia, the Islands and Rome. Each area had their own rides and shows. Personally my favourite part was of the theme park was the boat ride around the park as it was decorated magically.

Day five found us exploring the old and new town and the shops that they offered. We found a boat ride that would take us to Benidorm Island and while there we walked all the way to the top of the hill and down again which in the blistering heat was a very difficult feat to accomplish.

The next day was spent at a secluded beach that we found while exploring the town. This beach was a little bit different to the main beach though, as there were fish swimming in the water with us.

Our last day in Benidorm was spent at a marine animal park, “Mundomar” where we watched a bird, sea lion and dolphin show, looked at turtles/tortoises, lemurs, monkeys and seals and had our pictures taken with dolphins. It was the perfect ending to the holiday that had undoubtedly been the best holiday of my life.

With our glowing tans, souvenirs and pictures that needed to be uploaded onto Facebook, we boarded the plane that would take us back to Edinburgh, I couldn’t help but feel disheartened by the fact that we were leaving this incredible, stunning and warm place and going back home to dreary Scotland! But as they say, all good things must come to an end.

Examples of Students Essays

Rhino Capture in Kruger National Park Essay Example

Rhino Capture in Kruger National Park Essay

Poaching is a very touchy subject to many – Rhino Capture in Kruger National Park Essay introduction. Being an animal lover myself I couldn’t imagine enduring that kind of pain on an innocent animal just to make a large sum of money. It is not ethical and although many would love for it to end, poaching seems to be a continuous issue. With the creation of Kruger National Park, their intentions were to protect the nation’s fast and dwindling wildlife areas in South Africa. With their intentions only being good at the start of this assignment in 1898, they have managed to make progress with a few mishaps.

It seems as if money will really make people do stupid things. Mentioned in the article, two employed staff members poached two rhinos in an area of what is considered to be the best antipoaching unit in South Africa as well. In a perfect world, being an animal lover myself as I previously mentioned I would love to take all of these endangered animals under my wing and create an area where they were shielded off from all harm here in the world. However, the world we live is no-where near perfect, so that is unfortunately out of the question.

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All we can do is create more facilities for these animals and have more security to insure the safety of these innocent animals. Possibly even have air security that allowed a clear view of what was going on in the ground below them. At the same time it is just very hard to pull something off like this, especially when such a large area is being watched and poachers are good at what they do because they act so quickly. Hence, why so few get caught. So, for now the hopes for a perfect world is really all we have to end the constant poaching issue.

Examples of Students Essays

Sunday Cricket Essay Example

Sunday Cricket Essay

Sunday Cricket Symbolism Cricket X game (“serious business”) imported in colonies from British Empire To British: demonstrate British superiority (cultural dominance) To colonized: unify the diverse people in Caribbean against Britain, for nationhood, freedom and independence show that they are as powerful as, or even better than the British (“Cricket in the Caribbean is in the blood) Church The Baptist church Christianity religious and cultural dominance by British Empire Risen Lord rebirth of Jesus rebirth of West Indies+ victory of West Indies team

Theme West Indies’ efforts to challenge the cultural dominance by Britain and preserve local culture West Indies unify to win the cricket match e – Sunday Cricket Essay introduction. g. “Despite all dis doah, we still can’t lose we pride so much as to mek Englan beat we” The narrator openly criticizes the boredom of church and preacher (which symbolize Britain) e. g. “de man (the preacher) is barely literate” e. g. “But Bredda Kell (the preacher), im talk like im constipated” e. g. “im resort to sleep. Im head was back pon de bench an im mout wide open” e. g. listen to some sleepy borin member who lackin in any kine of inspiration” Bredda B sleeps loudly in the church (insult Christianity) e. g. “Bredda B let out a loud half cut off snore” The narrator refuses to join the church’s membership The narrator enjoys thinking and speaking freely, which is opposite to the “conservative” church e. g. “have a real progressive an spiritual discussion about every subjec under de sun wedda dem was drinkin a likkle rum or smokin some good bush” They believe that West Indies team will win in the cricket match . g. the match “look like a record breakin opining paatnership an a winnin West Indies team” e. g. Bredda jerry: “Out? Out? Nooooo… Not out, never out. We have a openin bat dat never out. ” British dominance and superiority under colonialism the British are always blessed, superior and live more comfortably, as if the God blesses them (Ironically, the God in Christianity advocates equality and love among all human beings) e. g. “God save Englan so often dat is high time likkle blessing fall pon we (West Indies)”

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Division in the West Indies society (against/succumb to British dominance) Most of them have independent thinking+ are determined and courageous enough to stand against British dominance (see examples in theme 1) However, some of them are conservative, vulnerable and stick to British influence The wife insists on going to church e. g. repetition of “an yuh wife decide dat de whole family have to go to church”+ “an yah wife insisting yuh hve to go to church because is Easter Sunday” The mother also insists on going to church (life is miserable if they stand against the colonizer) . g. the mother’s face that “say life goin to be well miserable for a lang time if ah change mi mind” Pastor thinks that the words from the God in Christianity is important e. g. “im (Pastor) say is de word important, nat who preachin it” Despite the divided stance, both groups are willing to compromise and reconcile their difference (maybe because they are all West Indies after all) the narrator is not entirely reject Christianity, and promises her mother to go to the church e. g. “promise my madda sincerely to accompany her to church day every same Sunday” e. g. We was two sorry an dutiful people as we set aff to church day mawining, already a few minutes late” All people in the church sing the last song together, celebrating the victory of West Indies team and their rebirth (Risen Lord) e. g. “we always rise again, hallellujah, always rise again! ” Compared to “My Children! My Africa! ” West Indies’ efforts to challenge the cultural dominance by Britain and preserve local culture =Thami+other Africans who advocate the revolution British dominance and superiority under colonialism =Apartheid Division in the West Indies society (against/succumb to British dominance) =Thami vs. Mr. M

Examples of Students Essays

50th gate Essay Example

50th gate Essay

History and Memory are complex representations of the past influenced by different perspectives – 50th gate Essay introduction. History is based on documented facts, historical research and formalised written records of past events. Memory is based on personal recollection, it is subjective and experiential. When considered together, history and memory combine to give a more complete picture of the past than is possible when considering either one independently. History and memory are complementary. History validates memory, while memory adds depth to history. These complex notions are effectively portrayed in the award winning non-fiction text ‘The Fiftieth Gate’ by Mark Raphael Baker. Similarly, these notions are also explored in the film ‘Schindler’s List’ directed by Steven Spielberg. History and memory lead to cultural knowledge and appreciation. In ‘The Fiftieth Gate’, a sense of resolution is reached. Both history and memory work together to reconstruct the past in a way that affects our present. Baker deliberately emphasises this through his documentation of his parents’ memories and this allows him to resolve his identity as a second generation Australian Holocaust survivor.

This is highlighted in the appropriation of Descartes’s quote “He remembers, therefore I am”. Likewise, the ‘fifty’ gates symbolise Baker’s journey through his parents’ stories and synthesise the narrative. All of the forty nine gates expose a personal discovery at a particular moment during Baker’s journey, however the fiftieth gate represents the enlightenment and knowledge gained as a result of Baker’s quest. The Roman numerals at the start of each chapter give the text a historical tone and authenticity. Furthermore, Genia is representative of individual memory as for her “there are no witnesses to interview” and all she possesses is “Memories. Just memories. Nothing more”. Baker doubts her personal testimonies in their interviews and the validity of her childhood experiences which are reliant on her own memory.

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Sympathy for Genia is enforced within the reader through the rhetorical question “you read. Books, books, everywhere. But do you know how it feels?” and this emphasises the power of individual experiences and the difficulty in expressing such horrors in contrast to archival documentation. Genia’s testimony in Gate 18 highlights how the most traumatic and painful memories are never forgotten, as seen through the short emphatic sentences and the aural dialogue imprinted on her memory, which is evident in “Juden Raus! Jews get out!”. It is clear that these painful memories affect Genia in the present, as seen through her phobias, depression and the quote “I’m still afraid of the darkness”. In addition, Yossl, is the embodiment of collective and communal memory, as his is a “past written on a page shared by other survivors”. Yossl is a ‘Buchenwald Boy’ and as such, collective memory helps the survivors cope with their experiences. Yossl’s memory is inaccurate, which portrays the fragmentation and distortion of memory that is also highlighted through the novel’s non-linear narrative. Yossl fails to remember where he was when the war started, and Baker justifies him by showing Yossl his report card, which further implicates the representation of history in that it can validate memory.

However, Baker makes clear to the reader that “The final moments can never be retrieved by history. Nor by memories”, which shows the limitations of history and memory, and how even the most extensive research and various perspectives cannot reveal all the details of a historical event.

Similar to Fiftieth Gate, Schindler’s List utilises historical data and both collective and individual memory to represent the events of the Holocaust, thus showing how one can learn about the past through the memories of others. The closing scene of the film fades from black and white to colour, symbolising a fusion of past and present, history and reality, which reveals how history teaches people about the past so they can gain a better understanding of the present. The actors who play as the Schindler Jews in the film accompany their real life counterparts laying stones on Schindler’s grave, which is a symbolic act of collective memory. This is similar to Yossl’s attendance at the Buchenwald Ball. In conclusion, it is seen how the relationship of history and memory in the non-fiction text ‘The Fiftieth Gate’ by Mark Raphael Baker results in Baker’s realisation that history and memory are complex and dependent on one another, thus allowing us to gain a complete, holistic and accurate representation of a historical event. Likewise, the film ‘Schindler’s List’ directed by Steven Spielberg also intertwines historical research with survivors’ stories in order to create a clear representation of the Holocaust. Overall, it is made evident that when history and memory are used together they are unstoppable.

Examples of Students Essays

Glacier National Park Canada Essay Example

Glacier National Park Canada Essay

Introduction: Glacier National Park of Canada protects, for all time, a portion of the Columbia Mountains Natural Region, in the interior wet belt of British Columbia – Glacier National Park Canada Essay introduction. The steep, rugged mountains, warm, moist climate and wide variety of plant and animal life are typical of this natural region. The park protects unique stands of old-growth cedar and hemlock and critical habitat for threatened and endangered wildlife species such as the mountain caribou, mountain goat and grizzly bear. The Rogers Pass National Historic Site is located in Glacier National Park. Rogers Pass was so designated for its importance in the construction and development of the country’s first major national transportation route. (Reference: http://www.pc.gc.ca/pn-np/bc/glacier/index_e.asp). The Canadian glacier park is also very important because the Canadian pacific railways has several important routes through the terrain and hence is also very important economically. The park offers several activities to its visitors which will be mentioned later but the point that I want to make is that it is park which has a very rich history, a dynamic role in the economy and is beyond doubt a tourist attraction in itself.

Activities: The activities that are carried out in the park are as listed below

Ski Touring




Wildlife Viewing




Trail Conditions. Report (Reference: http://www.pc.gc.ca/pn-np/bc/glacier/activ/index_e.asp).

It is clear from these activities that this park has a vibrant and a dynamic feel to it and is ever growing. There are however restrictions on some of the activities but they can also be eased if a tourist wants to do so.

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Terrain and Climate: Glaciers cover much of the challenging terrain in the park, which is dominated by 10 peaks ranging from 8,530 to 11,120 feet (2600 to 3390 m) in height.

The steep, rugged mountains, warm, moist climate and wide variety of plant and animal life are typical of this natural region. The park protects unique stands of old-growth cedar and hemlock and critical habitat for threatened and endangered wildlife species such as the mountain caribou, mountain goat and grizzly bear.

Peaks of the Hermit Range, the Bonney and Bostock Groups, the Van Horne Range, Purity Range, Dawson Range, and the especially challenging Sir Donald Range all lie wholly or in part within the park.(Reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Glacier_National_Park_(Canada).

Roger Pass: Rogers Pass is a narrow valley surrounded by a number of mountains. It is formed by the headwaters of the Illecillewaet River to the west and by Beaver River to the east. Both of these rivers are tributaries of the Columbia River, which loops about 240 km around to the north of the pass. It was named after Major Rogers who first surveyed the pass.

Rogers Pass is known for its winter snowfall, which amounts to about 10 m per year. Because of steep mountains, avalanches are very common in winter. When the railway first went over the pass, 31 snow sheds amounting to about 6.5 km were built to protect the railway from the avalanches. To keep the Trans-Canada Highway open during the winter, the military uses 105 mm howitzers to knock down the avalanches under controlled circumstances so traffic is not caught in unexpected avalanches.(Reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rogers_Pass)


1.      http://www.pc.gc.ca/pn-np/bc/glacier/index_e.asp

2.      http://www.pc.gc.ca/pn-np/bc/glacier/activ/index_e.asp

3.      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Glacier_National_Park_(Canada).

4.      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rogers_Pass


Examples of Students Essays

The Uniqueness of Everglades National Park Essay Example

The Uniqueness of Everglades National Park Essay

Everglades National Park is located in the southern tip of Florida – The Uniqueness of Everglades National Park Essay introduction. It is the largest subtropical wilderness in North America. Its total area including expansion (water and land) makes up 2,358 square miles. Everglades’ designated wilderness is 524,686 hectares. Everglades National Park was created in order to preserve the unique fauna and flora of “historic values the essential primitive natural conditions now prevailing in this area” (Everglades National Park Information 2007).

It is the first national park that was preserved predominantly because of its variety and abundance of life, rather than because of its historic or scenic values. The project of Everglades National Park was made by Ernest F. Coe, a Yale-educated landscape architect. From the very beginning the park was much smaller in size (186,159 hectares). However, since 1947 the size of the park has considerably increased to 497,167 hectares (in 1950) and to 566,788 hectares by 1958.

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Additionally, in 1989 the eastern boundary of the park was expanded by 44,112 hectares, mainly to protect and restore its natural ecosystem (Everglades National Park Information 2007). Everglades National Park is known for its wide variety of flora and fauna. Epiphytic orchids and Bromeliads are the Everglades most prominent plants. Approximately 25 varieties of orchids grow in the park along with more than 1,000 other seed-bearing plants and 120 species of trees.

More than 36 endangered or threatened animal species are known to occur in Everglades National Park, such as crocodile (Crocodylus acutus), the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis), the West Indian manatee (Trichechus manatus), the Florida panther (Felis concolor coryi), and the Cape Sable seaside sparrow (Ammodramus maritima mirabilis) (Everglades National Park Information 2007), to mention a few. Conservation Efforts Everglades National Park faces plenty of threats, such as draining, dredging and many others.

In addition, there is a concern about so-called ‘edge effects” Edge effects refer to the idea that “residents near parks bring pets that prey on wildlife, lead to urban-type development that increases storm runoff and often drive off-highway vehicles that bring intrusions and noise” (Developers covet areas 2007). The harmful side effects of human intrusions are conductive to the degradation of the ecosystem, especially taking into account the fact that over five million people live next to Everglades National Park. Besides, there are plenty of sugar plantations to the south of the Lake Okeechobee, huge farms, and cities.

Moreover, the cities and farms pose a threat to Everglades’ ecosystem, taking the water the park requires to survive. In order to solve the problem and to protect the unique Everglades’ ecosystem, the federal and state governments embark upon numerous restoration and protection projects. There were many engineering projects ranged from land reclamation and drainage (after 1928) to flood control. Within the course of the years, the old channels were deepened, the new channels were dug, and new levees, dikes and pumping stations were added in order to protect Everglades from floods.

Unfortunately, the projects were conductive to the coastal cities’ growth, while the natural areas were affected by arbitrary and reduced water flow. In order to remedy the harmful effects, the authorities reexamined and re-shifted projects from flood control to water management (Everglades Flood Control 2007). During the last century the ecosystem of Everglades National Park was severely impacted by human intrusions. The state and federal governments approved more than 68 restoration and protection projects that will cost at least $8 billion over more than 20 years (Everglades Flood Control 2007).

High emphasis should be placed on Everglades’ restoration and protection. In case the intrusion goes unchecked, the biological diversity will be threatened. The effects of uninformed water management and unrestricted growth policies on the ecosystem of the national park will lead to detrimental consequences. The destruction of habitat will be inevitable. In its turn, it will result in loss of species. It should be taken into account that Everglades National Park “no longer teem with wildlife as it had for thousands of years” (Preservation 2007).

The vast majority of species occurring in Everglades are either endangered or threatened. As it is provided by the National Audubon Society, the quantity of wading birds (e. g. egrets, wood storks, etc) has reduced 93% since the 1930s (from 265,000 to 18,500) (Preservation 2007). The statistics concerning other endangered species is also disturbing. For example, the population of roseate spoonbill has also reduced by 50% since 1980. The researchers also report that Everglades’ crocodiles and alligators’ reproduction has reduced as well, and the wood stork “has sometimes failed to reproduce at all” (Preservation 2007).

What concerns fish, some species of fish were considered unsafe for eating because of mercury contamination in their bodies. Everglades National Park contains more endangered or threatened representatives of flora and fauna than any other national park in the United States. Therefore, it is very important to understand the necessity of its protection and restoration. As far as the national park was created especially for the purposes of protection of a complex ecosystem, the situation is even more disturbing. The Endangered Species Act of 1973 affords some measure of legal protection.

There are many other protection acts aimed to “end the ecological decline” of Everglades national park. The Everglades National Park Protection and Expansion Act of 1989 authorized “the addition of 109,506 acres of the east Everglades to the park”. The Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan (CERP) authorizes the Army Corps of Engineers to dismount a part of flood-control canal system in South Florida and to “restore the meandering Kissimmee River and its surrounding wetlands”. However, it is not enough to protect the unique national park.

As it is claimed by George Frampton, the president of the Wilderness Society, “Of all the national parks, it [the Everglades] is the one closest to extinction” (Preservation 2007). Americans “ditched, diked and drained Florida thinking that was progress” (Preservation 2007) before they realized that they “totally changed the whole balance” (Preservation 2007). The additional proposals and measures to insure the preservation of the property may include engaging volunteers to control poaching and vandalism in Everglades, to develop an effective conservation management plan, strategy and implementation.

The authorities of the park should assess of current conservation programs in order to better implement the management of Everglades. Among other measures, Everglades’ authorities should launch public programs in order to enhance public awareness of the biodiversity of Everglades in general and of the decline of flora and fauna species in order to stem changes to the natural environment of Everglades resulting from encroachment by visitors.

Examples of Students Essays

History Fiftieth Gate Essay Example

History Fiftieth Gate Essay

History can be defined as “the methodical record of public events” where memory is defined as “the faculty by which events are recalled or kept in mind” – History Fiftieth Gate Essay introduction. Thus history and memory interrelate as history can be seen as the contextual justification for memory. “The Fiftieth Gate” is a poignant interweaving of history and memory. The text follows protagonist, Mark Baker an historian, son of Holocaust survivors Genia and Yossl (Joe), on an historical journey through memory, to uncover the origins of his past and act as a catalyst for future generations to also connect with their history.

Mark Baker’s journey through history and memory is also executed through his conventional ideas that memory is biased and less valid than history. There are numerous references to the discrepancies between the personal memories of his parents and the documented history Mark as an historian believes. In this way it is apparent that Mark is on a quest for verification, “my facts from the past are different”. This displays the flaw Mark traditionally notes in memory and his need for historical evidence. As responders accompany Mark on his journey, they also encounter the complexity of simultaneously being a son and an historian.

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This attested via the following when Mark collates his parent’s memories with documented historical evidence “His was a past written on a page…mother couldn’t point to anyone”. This quote represents the way Mark requires documented evidence, history. This is because he believed his father’s memories only when had had evidence and didn’t believe his mother as she was the sole survivor in the town and could not provide documented evidence to verify her memories.

As the text progresses, Mark does discover testimony of an SS soldier that justified her account, “found something at last… it’s really true”. Through his quote, responders perceive the significance of history and memory. Responders also decipher memory’s ability to add a third dimension of individual emotion and experience to documented history as the supportive historical evidence corresponds with individual memory and allows such emotion to be expressed as this third dimension. This quote also highlights evidence of post modernity. Mark begins to question and challenge his original ides about history, memory and their significance. He challenges the nature to believe that only history is valid as he explores personal accounts – memory, into the discourse of history.

Baker utilises various literary techniques that emulsify the underlying ideas present in the text. Mark adapts a non – linear chronology using time techniques to create fragmentation, he includes flashbacks of memory, to replicate the nature of memory and it’s incoherent fragments. This is evident when Genia flashes back in Gate VIII to her remembrance of the church “ I use to play there on the hills with a sleigh” The text is structured in fifty gates. Each gate represents a new door, which when opened grows closer and closer to unlocking the past using a combination of history

Examples of Students Essays

Group Work Essay Example

Group Work Essay

I love working in groups because they give you a chance to work together with new personalities and new, refreshing ideas – Group Work Essay introduction. The only time I don’t like working in groups is when there are people who aren”t willing to put the effort they could and posses, into the work assigned. I used to believe that I operated very well in groups, but during this year, I found out that I have a few faults that need correcting, and am in the process of re-evaluating my values and myself.

It seems that I tend to take control of projects and direct them to the direction of my desire. I did not think that I was so controlling until this was brought to my attention by one of my teachers, who said that I was a “strong personality, who knows what he wants, and gets irritated when it doesn”t go the way he pictures it”. Of course, this was hard to digest and I just denied it at first, but when I went home and thought about my ignorant actions, I realized that I was a very extroverted-introvert type person.

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I also realized that I would like to be the backbone of the group and take in suggestions from all the members instead of always making my own. I plan to, from now on, listen to all contributions and encourage all members to speak their mind. To be the anchor, the link that holds the group together, is more important than getting my ideas in to an extend that it oppresses other ideas. At a time in my life where I am re-evaluating myself, it is hard to keep up my previous self-confidence, and therefore. am still adjusting to being a follower at times as well.

I think that the groups I worked in had trouble functioning because some members were not willing to work while others were forcing them to. Perhaps the ones that weren”t willing to contribute would have been more comfortable working with their own ideas. Perhaps they would have worked easily if they liked what they were working on and weren”t simply being forced to do dull and tedious tasks of no interest to them. To gently coax such people into coming together and building on the strengths, complimenting the bonds of the group, is my focus at the moment whenever in a group.

Group Work Essay

Introduction What is group work and what is it? – Group Work Essay introduction?? Group work is usually a group of up to four or six students. Each group is set to work together either by their tutors or self-selecting. Group work is for various learning purposes either set by tutors or students. It gives students the opportunity to share ideas, resources, and ability. Group work gives opportunities for students to get to know each other and form working relationships to gain and achieve a better understanding of particular group assignment work that can develop their skills, such as communication, listening, and team working skills.

The motive of group work is to improve both the learning achievement and learning efficiency of individual students by keeping learning active, helping students to develop their critical thinking, progress their greater responsibility for their learning. Moses, John and Bell, Bob (1995 p88) suggested that group work allows students and each individual to “recognise each others strengths and weakness. ” Why work in a group?

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Jaques, D (1991, p9) said, “Teaching and learning in small groups has a valuable part to play in the all-round education of students. It allows them to negotiate meanings, to express themselves in the language of the subject, and to establish a more intimate contact with academic staff than more formal methods permit. ” In other words, group work can be very exciting and fun to engage in activities, it is design to reduce the workload and give students the opportunity to share their workload rather than the doing it all alone.

There are many aims and reasons for working in a group, one of the aims is to emphasise on the topic or assignment set, to give students the opportunity to discuss their views and be able to share their own experiences, beliefs, and what is valued to them. Group work is a valuable method of learning because goals are set to accomplish. With fair tasks divided amongst them, support from one another with decision-making, ideas, and communication. People can learn to agree and disagree in groups; they can expand their critical thinking, creative knowledge and form independent decision.

The advantage and disadvantage of group work The advantages in a group task are that students are set to carry out responsibilities to achieve their work. In a group, everyone gets to learn not just from the tutor but also from other students to give everyone the opportunity to share and discuss their work for support and feedback to avoid disagreements and disappointments before meeting the deadline. The disadvantages can be when each individual feels that they have been set with tasks that are more difficult or when individuals do not pull their own weight to research and learn.

When members of the group do not stay on track and are just passengers that do not stay around or bully other team members, it does not only intimidate the person but puts the group under pressure and make the group work harder to accomplish. Problems in the group Problems in the group can be very common and should be dealt within the group. Even though common problems are usually dealt amongst the group as mature students sometimes the lack of communication and understanding can lead to an uncomfortable working group and low insignificant marks.

Therefore, it is important that in a group students know how to put aside feelings and differences that they may have against each other so they can concentrate on the work set and the reason for the work being set. Tutors do not get involved in common, problems but it has been known that in rare cases when the students are no longer being professional regarding their work and are putting other students’ life at risk tutors then have to take certain measures to prevent the problem from going further.

Brown, Sally (March 12 1999. ) Other common problems depend on the type of group, each individual’s background, critical thinking, beliefs, behaviour, attitude and so on. Conclusion The conclusion of this research is that “Learning in groups, rather than lectures or presentations, allows students to have greater scope to negotiate meaning and express themselves and their own ideas. It also helps them to establish far more effective relationships, not only with their tutors and trainers but with each other. (Routledge, 21st Decemeber2006. ) Making group work an effective way of learning. To help students understand the reason of the group work exercise and the different roles that group members can have by their strength and weakness. The conclusion is that group work does not only provide students with effective and collaborative learning abilities but also the knowledge and preparation of real job employment requirements needed in every job.

Group Work

This assignment will describe a piece of group work, which I have been involved in during the course of my 70-day placement. The assignment will analyse the effectiveness of the group work with reference to group work theories. The group in which I have developed is a health and fitness group for adults with learning difficulties, who live within residential services. Participation in this group gives the members a chance to socialise whilst learning new activities and information about health.

Merchant (1988) argues that developing as a worker in a group is inadequate, upholding that practitioners also need to be proficient members of teams. This involves understanding the progression that operates in groups and dexterity in facilitating group relationships and tasks in order to achieve objectives. Groups offer a diverse level of interaction, facilitating learning on a level that is not available through individual methods. Being part of a group can offer a sense of belonging and gives members a chance to aid others in their development as well as be aided themselves.

For some, a group is a place to belong, where mutual support, inspiration and trust are offered. (Coulshed and Orme, 2006). The purpose of the group I worked with is to offer people with learning difficulties, in residential services, the chance to experience various forms of exercise and learn about healthy lifestyle choices. It aims to provide opportunities for members to develop positive relationships, enabling them to make friends and have fun. Cole and Llyod (2007) emphasise the prevailing capability group work has to engage marginalised populations.

Adults with learning difficulties are particularly at risk of being socially excluded. According to a national survey cited in Valuing People Now (Department of Health, 2007), 31% of people with learning difficulties have no friends. The paper goes on to suggest that organising service provision to include integration is one way that can contribute to people’s social contacts. I was given the task of starting the group, along with another member of staff who is a senior support worker in one of the residential houses.

There are also three other senior support workers who are charged with responsibility for facilitating the group. The members who attend the group are accompanied by staff members from their individual houses. All of the people living within residential services were invited to the first session, which totalled almost 50 people. However, it was thought to be unlikely that everybody would attend as some people may have other commitments.

The size of a group is very important in terms of group dynamics and should be large enough for stimulation, yet small enough for contribution and acknowledgment of each member (Brown 1992). At the first meeting, eight service users attended. Although this was a good number as it allowed people to get to know each other and spend time speaking to everyone in the group, we had facilities to accommodate 20 people comfortably and were a little disappointed at the low turn out. The members of the group have differing levels of learning difficulties and are a mixture of both men and women.

When a group is being set up, if possible a perfect equilibrium, is one that is standardised enough to ensure solidity and assorted enough to ensure validity”. (Coulshed and Orme, 2006) The venue for the sessions is a recreation centre within the Tameside area, it was important when finding a suitable accommodation, that it be wheelchair accessible and have appropriate disabled toilets, to accommodate people with physical disabilities. As we asked members to contribute to the cost of room hire, it was also imperative that we found a venue at a reasonable price.

Four main stages of group development have been identified as playing a part in groups, these are forming, storming, norming, and performing (Tuckman and Jenson, 1977) and I will discuss these in relation to the group work I undertook. The initial session involved the group meeting each other for the first time, to begin with the members seemed hesitant about what would take place at the sessions and what was expected of them. Tuckman identified this stage as the forming stage, this phase is characterised by anxiety from the participants.

At this point, individuals are gathering information and impressions about each other, and about the scope of the task and how to approach it. (Tuckman and Jenson, 1977). With this in mind, I introduced myself to the group, illuminating that I was a student social worker on placement and that I would only be part of the group for a month. I explained that I would be facilitating the group and organising various fitness activities. Also, along with the other group leaders, I would inform members about healthy lifestyle choices and give them tips on how to incorporate changes into their lives.

The first activity was a warm-up using a parachute, which everybody had the chance to participate in. The game involved each person holding a part of the parachute, then as a team, we would move the parachute in different directions. Two members decided not to join in at the start of the game, preferring to sit and watch. As the warm-up proceeded one member of the group became very bossy, ordering the other group members to hold the parachute in different ways, some of the participants stayed quiet and one decided to ignore the rules of the game and sat on the floor.

According to Tuckman and Jenson (1977) this is known as the storming stage; decisions don’t come easily within the group, members vie for position as they attempt to establish themselves in relation to other team members and the leader. Clarity of purpose increases but plenty of uncertainties persist. Cliques and factions form and there may be power struggles. The team needs to be focused on its goals to avoid becoming distracted by relationships and emotional issues. Compromises may be required to enable progress.

Aware of this, we moved on to the main activities, which involved a selection of games, including, tennis, curling and boccia and hockey. Having a selection of activities ensured that there would be something that everybody enjoyed. Once the main activities were up and running, this saw the group appearing as unified, working as a team and sharing equipment. This is known as the norming stage, whereas, agreement and consensus is largely formed among the group, they respond well to facilitation by leader and roles and responsibilities are clear and accepted.

As more time was spent doing the activities, it became apparent that boccia was the most popular game, it is accessible for both people with a physical disability and those that are able-bodied. A white jack is thrown and the game involves getting your balls as close to the jack as possible. After about 20 minutes, the whole group were playing boccia and taking it in turns to have their go. The members were laughing and there was a definite sense of team. This is known as the performing stage of Tuckmans model, at this point the group knows clearly why it is doing what it is doing.

There is a shared vision and the group is able to stand on its own feet with no interference or participation from the leader. Disagreements occur but now they are resolved within the group positively and emphasis is placed on working towards achieving the goal. The stages are not inevitably clear-cut; they are more a representation of tendencies which many groups veer towards. Groups are often forming and changing, and each time that happens, they can move to a different Tuckman Stage. A group might be norming or performing, but a new member might force them back into storming.

An experienced leader will be ready for this, and will help the group get back to performing as quickly as possible (Egolf, 2001) At the end of the first session, we spent time asking the group members what activities they enjoyed and if they had any suggestions for what they would like to do in future sessions. This was to ensure that subsequent group meetings stayed fun for members and that they felt involved with the organisation of the group. Many of the participants offered ideas for future activities, ranging from walking to ball sports. One member was very keen to be part of the organisation of the group.

It was important that I facilitated discussions on a level that all members could understand, ensuring that everybody was invited to participate, the aim being to support and empower the members, by adopting an anti-oppressive approach, enabling participants to take greater control and be actively involved in the decision making. On reflection, the first health and fitness session went well; members engaged enthusiastically in activities and spent time socialising with one another. The overall evaluation from the participants of the first session was very favourable.