What is your Journey? We all have been in or participated in a Journey once, or more in our lives. Some journeys are challenging or longer than other ones but thats what journey’s are for, to explore and learn. During the past few weeks, I have explored a fascinating journey about people. This journey has taught me more about the world we live in and human relationships.
Our current unit question in english is “What is the relationship between the text and the real world?”. We first did our research on Nelson Mandela, then we made a blog post about the unit question and the book we were individually reading. Then we read Journey to Jo’burg and made a creative piece of writing. Lastly, we watched a movie “Power of One”.
At the start of the journey I only knew the country South Africa but I never knew what happened there because I didn’t know what apartheid and soweto uprising were and how it affected people who lived in South Africa at that time. But now I know that both apartheid and the soweto uprising affected numerous people who lived in South Africa. I learned this because as I mentioned earlier, in class we wrote a biography in a magazine article about Nelson Mandela. During research, not only I learned about Nelson Mandela but also about what he did that made him have a good impact on many people in South Africa and all around the world.
What I also learned is that the environment you live in can influence or impact you. Shane Charnas, who lived and grew during apartheid came and talked about his experience. At that time we were working on Nelson Mandela so our grade thought he was a great, and powerful leader. But when Shane Charnas was kid, he was taught that Nelson Mandela was evil, a murder, and an anti-christ. When we all heard about this, we were shocked because it was much too different opinion from ours. I think he was taught like that because he was white, and his family had different beliefs from the black people. He also said that people worry too much about all the small things that’s happening around you when there are other bad situation happening all around the world. While he was telling his speech, I thought to myself that the environment you live in can really change how you think or act.
Nothing like a great book can make your day. As I mentioned above in the introduction, in class, we read an amazing book Journey to Jo’burg by Beverly Naidoo. If I summarize the book shortly, it is about two black children going on a journey to find their mother working for these white family at Johannesburg because their baby sister was sick. As a class, we focused on one part of the book where one of the character name Grace, tells a story from her experience during the protestation of the soweto uprising. In this assessment, we re-wrote the story into present tense and add more detail by putting in more feelings as if you were Grace. What I learned after doing this creative piece was to write in someone elses perspective and to show feeling as if you were that person in that situation. I think this assessment was a good experience for me, and also for the whole class because I usually write in past tenses but I not very often in present tense.
And lastly, I learned that one person can make a huge change and difference to a certain group of people when we watched a movie The Power of One. The movie included how white people treated black people back then during apartheid in South Africa. The main character in the movie P.K, had a good impact on thousands of blacks who were living under apartheid because he helped them stand up for their rights, which were freedom and because he was brave and had great understanding and knowledge. There were both some happy and sad moments, and even shocking parts during the movie. What I liked about The Power of One was that it had a thoughtful meaning, and it made you think about it.
In conclusion I would like to say that at the start of the unit I didn’t know that people could treat other people in various ways. Both negative and positive. But at the end of the unit I knew that there are cruel people in the world and also loving, and kind people. And if even if you looked a lot different on the outside, such as having different race or culture we’re all still human and also very much equal. What I enjoyed the most during the journey was to learn about South Africa and apartheid because if we hadn’t have this unit, I would be clueless about apartheid. In my opinion, because there was apartheid, I think people became together and worked as one. Although I wouldn’t want to live in the country with segregation and racism. I think before we do something, we should ask ourselves why we do it and whether it’s important or not because after its done, you can’t replace it with something different.