All posts by Darline Ceus

A Walk Down Memory Lane

In this short essay, I present an overview of my ESL experience during grade school and junior high. Please click the image above to read.

Here is a few fun fact about my ESL experience (not included in the essay)

  1. My favorite extracurricular class was art because I loved to do draw and paint.
  2. Every Friday during third grade I stayed after school to help clean the classroom in exchange for a no homework weekend!
  3. I’ve befriended some of my old teachers on Facebook.


Thank you for stopping by today! Hope you enjoy a quick read!

2020 Gone Wrong

A series of Unfortunate Events

If I can describe the past two weeks in one image this is what it would be.

To describe it plainly the past few weeks has been so stressful and annoying. Mainly because the COVID-19 is happening and everyone is reacting like this…

The fear of the unknown is making people panic and making sudden decisions abruptly.

My entire world has been a series of unfortunate events happening with work, social life, and other things. During the past week, I’ve been working every day as if the world will end ( why?) because my job can suddenly shut down and everyone would have to work from home and students will have to learn from the comfort of their living room couch. This has created a lot pressure on me and other staffs to formulae a plan for how this is going to work (if/when schools shut down). This has happened in most counties and this is where we are now. Other sudden changes have happened too like important meetings being pushed to different days and staff development trainings canceled among other things (including spring break). Like how will I survive the rest of the school year. Also, my friends have canceled a dinner date, my Zumba instructor canceled class and even the town library is starting to close early.

On A Larger Scale

Government officials and county leaders suggest everyone practice social distancing and personal hygiene (Which for some people translates to buy all the paper towels in stock at every store). I mean seriously why are people like this. This whole ordeal has made me so upset with society and realizing once again that people are utterly annoying. (Really hope this social distancing practice will calm me down)

I’ve gone to my local Shoprite three times this past week for groceries and still not able to purchase everything on my list. (I didn’t even consider Costo because I just cannot with the waiting lines and the stabbing and all the terrible things happening at every Costo)

So What About The Lit Review

With the crazy week I’ve had I did not get a chance to read any books but I did get to read Anne-Marie Dietering’s introduction of Why Autoethnography. Her article goes in-depth on the research of academic autoethnography studies and the challenges of this research. she describes her encounter with the spark that first made her interested in this study when her husband started working with a thesis student. Her discussion of this research emphasized the importance of community and researching the community that examines culture and history. After reading this article I decided to create a small project with just my family. This project is a list of languages in my family and a different experience with the language. 

Click the Link Here for Acess

Another article I read last week was Critical Auto Ethnography in Pursuit of Educational Equity.

In this collective article the authors Chang, Heewon. Marx, Sherry and Pennington, Julie discuss that autoehtnnograghy research is rooted in devenelopemnt of socials sciences. The artcle introdice other autoethnogpraphies

In this collective article, the authors discuss that autoethnography research is rooted in the development of socials sciences. The article introduces other auto-ethnographers and briefly describes the type of research they conducted in studies of autoethnography. The purpose of this article presents how the individual experience calls for the understanding of all people. One very important quote that stood out to me was in the conclusion of the text which states,

“While educational research from all traditions informs practice, policy, and instructions, auto-ethnography with its focus on lived experience identity and perspective has the potential to impact educators deeply as they seek understanding and justice for alls students. (pg. 4)

Discovering Autoethnography

Hey there and welcome back to another week. Let’s talk about what’s been going on in my side of town lately. I have been thinking of how to make my broad ideas smaller much more personal. This past week I have been researching and learning about autoethnography. Autoethonogpray is a theoretical method that uses both qualitative and cultural analysis to present the experiences of one individual (I will use myself for this case study). In essence, autoethnography is a type of research that puts the self at the center of cultural analysis. This method requires the individual to be descriptive of their past experiences and present a complete truthful narration of self in order to understand the personal background driving the study.

After researching this theoretical method I believe it is the best approach that will make my research thesis compelling while also expressing learner diversity in elementary classes.

How to Do Ethnography Research

Well, of course, there is a youtube tutorial on almost anything out there. So before I engaged in any intellectual research/ reading I first watched a few videos on what is autoethnography. Here is a short and edifying video about the topic.

After some visual learning, I then read about how one would exactly go about doing this type of research. The image below presents a detailed outline of what’s included in each step of autoethnography research. In the background section is where I will discuss my personal experience as a former ESL student and my passion for doing this research. In the next two sections is where I will conduct most of the academic work. This is where I will need to create and to present a comprehensive review of literature that I find most relevant and suitable to study. I do not yet have a list of articles/books (and historical essays) to research but will soon create one. Lastly, the way I plan to gather and analyze data is by conducting interviews and doing observations. I believe these are the best two ways to get adequate personal details necessary for this research. I want to interview a former ESL teacher and also a current ESL student. The reason that I want to include those two case studies is to not only discuss my own experience but to have others that I can reference as well. ( Also, it will help this research thesis to not be all about me). I plan to observe an ESL classroom to experience once again how it feels to be an ESL student.

ESL In The Classroom

I read an article this week about the experience of bilingual writers. In the article THROUGH STUDENTS’ EYES: THE EXPERIENCES OF THREE ESL WRITERS university professor Vivian Zamel conducts a close study that analyzes the personal experience of three ESL student writers. The three students Carlos, Mohammed, and Nham experience a great deal of difficulty as an ESL writer but what they found most rewarding was the supportive and effective instruction of their teachers.

In an interview, Mohammed states that,

The teacher wants to know about the ideas in your mind. She takes ideas serious. This makes me feel good. The teacher wants to talk to you, wants to know what’s on your mind and you feel courage to revise … All these books won’t help, you won’t use your brain. You never develop your ideas.


It wasn’t just the students who found writing in an ESL classroom difficult, but so did the teachers. The teachers argued that the instructional models and the expectations we make about our students are whats hindering the creativity and flexibility of ESL writers (Emphasis mine) (The terms language acquisition and writing development are further discussed). As a result, they suggest that ESL students should not be graded on words they do not know rather they should have the freedom to create meaning and ideas that stimulate stories even if they don’t have the exact words for it. By doing this, ESL writers will learn the English language more easily.

This article provided an informative insight into the experience of what it is like to be a foreign writer in the classroom. While the research data was analytic and extensive it presented a selective way of gathering data. In my autoethnography, I want to focus more on the student experience in the classroom as an ESL learner in all subject fields.

Passions- Blog Post 3

Hi, welcome back to another week. It seems like the year is going by so fast, I don’t believe the weekend even happened. Seriously, 2020 please slow down so I can get my thoughts together. Speaking of thoughts, I’ve been thinking about what I am passionate about when it comes to education and my experience as a learner. I figure this will help me narrow down my very broad ideas.

Last week my two proposal options discussed the importance of students getting the most advantageous opportunities in the classroom with reading choices and ESL classes. After thinking about these two previous ideas I am considering dropping the first topic and discuss more ESL.


I am still interested in researching how ESL classes benefit immigrant students however, this time I plan to move forward with a different approach. In this approach, I plan to use my own learning experience to express learner diversity in elementary classes. I am considering this approach because I believe that it will push me to get out of the traditional way of thinking about thesis topics. An ethnographically based research will help me delve more into my own experiences and discover more of what constructs me as a bilingual learner.

Educating preschoolers with learning disabilities

Lastly, another area that I am passionate about is my career. I currently work in a special needs school with students who have learning disabilities. My typical day at work is different from other preschools. I interact daily with students whose learning styles require speific and strategic methods. I would like to study why their disabilities require individualized learning plans.