Why must all good things end?

After a year, Mr. Ziebarth’s AP 3 English class is finally over. To be honest, I’m really going to miss this class. I love coming to second period everyday, because I never know what is going to happen, what Mr. Ziebarth is going to introduce to the class.

I can honestly say that I have learned quite a bit this year. From DIY projects, to blogs, to the BRAWL, the activities and assignments I have completed in AP English have all been a learning experience that I will carry with me throughout the rest of my high school career, and into college as well.

To wrap up this year, let’s recap what I’ve learned in Ziebarth’s class, shall we?

1. Team work does not always mean easy work. 

You may think that more people on a project makes a project easier. If you think that, you are wrong. My DIY project was a group project consisting of five people, and that was not easy at all. It wasn’t that my group members didn’t do work or anything, but throughout the course of the year, I learned that the  fact that there were so many of us just made it hard to coordinate and communication sometimes became an issue. Sometimes, smaller groups can be much more efficient.

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2. Time management can be difficult, but it is extremely important. 

This was also something I learned from my DIY project. Because my project consisted of several different parts (filming interviews, editing, promotion, etc.), it all turned out much more time consuming that originally expected. Therefore, we had to budget our time very wisely when it came to going out to film interviews and such. It wasn’t easy, but in the end, I think I have learned a skill that is going to be very helpful in the future.


3. Social media can be distracting at times, but it is also very useful. 

This year, Ziebarth has incorporated a variety of social media into his class, including Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. He is the only teacher I know that uses all them, because other teachers believe that they can become distracting. I personally think it was a great idea to utilize these tools. I hate Twitter, and I had never used Instagrammed before this year. However, after using them in Z’s class, I’ve come to appreciate the usefulness of these forms of social media.

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4. English is open to interpretation. 

“It’s not about the author’s intention, it’s about the effect.”

That’s what Ziebarth always said when we read novels, or when we read anything at all, for that matter. After a year in his class, I’ve learned that it isn’t about what the author was trying to do, but about what the writing does for the reader. I think that’s why I love English class so much. There really isn’t a wrong answer, because every novel, every essay affects everyone a little bit differently, and that’s ok.


There are so many other things I have learned in this English class, but I think those are the main four. Mr. Ziebarth, thank you for being a great English teacher and teaching me these lessons that I will continue to use in the future. It’s been a wonderful year.

– Karen




Finding Nemo: Discovering Yourself in a Sea of Confusion

Surprising that no one has talked about Finding Nemo in this nautical-themed blog right?  I’ve decided to take on this topic because Finding Nemo is so similar to the topics we are learning about not only in AP English 3, but in school.  As progressing teenagers, we long for freedom and independence as we strive to identify who we are as individuals.  Our DIY (Do It Yourself) project grants us the permission to do so as we’re basically allowed to create something of our own choice.  We students are given the opportunity to show who we really are and what we are strong or weak in.

In turn, Finding Nemo is about an over-protective parent, Marlin, in search of his handicapped son, Nemo.  Along the process, Marlin discovers a lot about himself as well his colleague, Dory, as they progress in the adventures of the search for the already maturing Nemo.  Is it safe to say that we are the Nemos of high school?  And that some of us are still lost in a “sea” of confusion?  Come on down this adventure with me as we really find ourselves.

One LARGE recurring theme in Finding Nemo and in high school is that everything is NOT as it seems.  High school is what you make of it and totally depends on whether you want to make it a good experience or not.  As intimidating as it may seem, high school is as free-flowing as the East Australian Current and actually goes by extremely fast.  In Finding Nemo, Marlin encounters three large sharks who he stereo-typically categorizes into fish-eating behemoths.  As a result, Marlin’s experience with these three fish-loving sharks was deterred due to his pre-determined ideas.  In school, you must always, and I mean always, keep an open mind.  Staying open-minded stimulates your potential to be the greatest you can be academically as well as socially with the classmates surrounding you.  “Classmates are FRIENDS, not FOOD.”Finding Nemo

Sometimes we, as humans, want an exact answer.  Our hunger for information drives us to try and find a definite answer.  See that might be correct when learning Biology or Algebra.  But in English?  Fish PLEASE.  There is no direct answer in English and it is completely opened up to interpretation.  There is no direct answer to our DIY project but every student’s project is right in its own creative way.  Consequently, what we may think is the right answer, may not always be what it seems. ES-CAH-PAY.


Lastly, if you are ever lost or feel that you are going in the wrong direction, just know that there is always someone who is willing to be there for you. You’ll have a Dory.

P. Sherman

  Light will come even in the worst of times and the darkest of times.  There will always be hurdles to jump and ends to meet.  It’s all on you to be responsible.  The DIY project gives lots of freedom, but make sure to spend your time wisely.  Be patient, be kind, and be loving.  It’ll all come back to you.  Just Keep Swimming.


Just keep swimming