Me and my friends… What influences our personal development?

November 23rd, 2012 by barankiewicz3marta3s

by Marta Barankiewicz (1996) LOK Krakow/Poland

Every young person needs some inspiration, motivation and clues for life. For each person, it can be a different thing. The main influence on me and my life had my family, especially in childhood. Relations shaped my system of values and taught some behaviours. My parents showed me what is good and what I should not do. With my siblings, I spent a really interesting time, we could play, they partly shaped my music taste. I recall these times very enjoyable.

Later, when I did not need only care and play, my family was irreplaceable in supporting me. I have always been able to talk with them. Also, in daily life I can follow every value which my family transferred to me. My friends also had a considerable impact on me, but rather in later years of my life. When we are teenagers, we look for peers’ understanding. It is very important to feel good in a group. We are glad that other people like the same music, movies, etc. Friends are the best comrades to talk to.

It was my viewpoint. Here you can read short interviews with my two friends as a kind of comparison. As you can see one of them has an opinion similar to mine, but another one has a very beautiful and moving history.

ME: What had the biggest influence on your personal development?
FRIEND1: Let me think… It is hard to answer a question like that, but I will try. Personally, I think that friends and family had the biggest influence on my personal development.
ME: Could you tell me something more about your choice?
FRIEND1: I chose family, because it has had an influence on me and my personality since I was born. In the early childhood I spent most of the time with my parents. They brought me up by setting good examples and showing how I should behave. When I grew up, my parents’ influence on me weakened, because I started to think independently and also like all the people I started to socialize with others.
ME: And why did you choose friends?
FRIEND1: As a teenager I met some friends at school. Definitely, my friendship with them changed me but not much, I think. I kept moral values and rules learned from my parents but some of things they taught me were just out of date. Friends showed me something new and fresh, so it was quite an interesting experience.

ME: What influences you, your life and your development the most?
FRIEND2: I think that from the beginning of my life, school and music, as the effect of my parents’ dreams and decisions had the biggest influence on my personality .
ME: It is very interesting and you have a completely different opinion from other friends. Can you explain it?
FRIEND2: My parents both are musicians, so when I reached the school age, they decided to send me to music school that they both had finished. I had to move out from my parents house to a dormitory, because the school was located in another town. This school had old traditions and rigorous rules. It was a boarding school, so my whole life was dependent on these rules and people.
ME: How did you cope with it?
FRIEND2: It was hard for me as a child because I saw other children carelessly playing outside when I had to practice playing the violin or piano. However, I quickly found some kind of escape from all these inconveniences in music. I found a way to express myself by music that I play. Especially, practising and playing the violin helped me to develop my inner personality. Now I’m really grateful to my parents for sending me to this school because it helped me to reveal who I really am. I can not even imagine my life without music and I’m sure, that it made me the person, I am now.

And how about you? What was the most important thing in your life? Is the family the biggest value for you? I’m very interested in your opinions, so could you share your experiences?


March 30th, 2012 by barankiewicz3marta3s

by Marta Barankiewicz (1996), Anna Matyja (1995), Justyna Kościółek (1995) LOK Krakow/Poland

For many years the Polish education was reformed quite often and in various fields, what is not liked by our society. Some years ago (the years of our parents’ youth), the system of studying was completely different (for people who wanted to get comprehensive education and study at university like us now). The primary school lasted eight years and then the students continued learning for four years in secondary school (high school). Later, they had the possibility to go to university. Now, in Poland, all school years are divided differently: we have six years of the primary school, three years of the middle school (junior high school) and three years of the secondary school (high school).

The government, despite the protests of parents, lowered the age of children going to the first class from seven to six and at the same time shortened their light-hearted and carefree childhood. Reforms are also not good for older students because of reduced hours of Polish classes and History. Till this year, final exams have not checked the whole knowledge of students as they have been given answers, and they have only had to choose the right option. With time, instead of improving our competence and getting the knowledge, we have less and less material in books. Money is also a large problem for education, because there is not enough money for supporting state schools, for supporting students, for equipment and sometimes even for teachers’ pay, and more often it happens that the government liquidates schools instead of financing them well. So, are the reforms of education good? …The answer seems quite obvious in the case of our country.

And what would you say about your country? Does the government also constantly reform education, ignoring the outcome and not necessarily paying attention to people’s protests?


March 9th, 2012 by barankiewicz3marta3s

by Marta Barankiewicz (1996) LOK Krakow/Poland

Recently I noticed an interesting article on one of the Turkish blogs. In this note there were 5 items about language education at school and Turkish students’ answers. I wanted to know how these issues will look in a Polish school.

I have carried out the same questionnaire in my class which has English/German extended programme. 28 students took part in this enquiry. As you see our result look similar to yours.

We also think English/German language classes are necessary in our school and not only these classes need language education. Mostly students consider that classes for example with Physics and Maths as a main syllabus should also have lots of language lessons. Language for those people can be useful in their work. All the students should learn English and German, because it makes the odds for better offers of jobs, also abroad.

Schools in both countries do not get enough support, invitation and motivation to study languages. All the students prefer practical language learning instead of theoretical one.

But in contrast to your students, ours are not sure how useful the language education from our school will be in our future life. Scores are rather balanced and students hesitate. It’s so because sometimes we learn very advanced vocabulary and grammar structures which are very useful to pass our final exams well, but they may not be so useful in our future life.

In conclusion, it seems our generation want to learn and improve languages. The only piece of advice for schools is to support us and give some motivation.


March 4th, 2012 by barankiewicz3marta3s

by Marta Barankiewicz (1996), Anna Matyja (1995), LOK Krakow/Poland

In Poland traditional holidays were substituted by secular ones. The Soviet government changed Catholic celebrations into political ones. We think that the young people of the 21st century in our country would not like to take part in them.

First, we think our Catholic celebrations are magic and a part of our typical folklore. The Soviet government liquidated two Catholic holidays important to the Polish people: on 6th of January- Three Kings’ Day and on 15th of August – the Assumption of Mary. For Polish people religion and God mean devotion and attachment. Faith for hard-working people was an enormous support. On Christmas Eve Father Frost came to Polish children, but earlier it was traditional Santa Claus. The Father Frost was great, but in our opinion he was unnecessary, because we had Santa Claus who also brought lots of sweets.

We had to celebrate, for example, on 7th of November, the anniversary of October Revolution, on 12th of October, the Army Day instead of our Independence Day on 11th of November. The young people would prefer to commemorate the Independence Day. People tried to show their independence and bond with their homeland. The Soviet government liquidated our Independence Day. It’ s the most important holiday to us. It’s a symbol of victory and bravery of Polish soldiers. Soviet people wanted to change our celebrations to more political ones, but Polish people know their history very well. We want to celebrate holidays which are connected with our culture and tradition.

Communism was a very hard time for our nation. People had lots of problems and they had to worry about their future. Festivals were nice events and a relaxing thing. All the time we had to struggle against the Soviet strength, but we were constant and obstinate and it led us to our victory. The young generation want to remember about their traditions and folklore. Our culture is really unique. We would not like to take part in secular celebrations introduced by Soviets, because we have beautiful Polish customs we are proud of.


February 8th, 2012 by barankiewicz3marta3s

by Marta Barankiewicz (1996), Anna Matyja (1995), LOK Krakow/Poland

The Main Market Square in Krakow is the largest medieval square in Europe. The greatest monuments are Mariacki Church, Sukiennice (the Cloth Hall), St Adalbert’s Church and the town hall tower. On the Main Market Square there is also Adam Mickiewicz’s monument.

Today in the heart of Krakow we have beautiful and colourful houses around the square, but in the past they were very shabby and dilapidated. In 1951 the authorities decided to liquidate the tracks in the Market Square, because earlier trams could go there. In 1940 the Main Market Square was called Adolf-Hitler Platz, but on 18th January 1945 it returned to its previous name. On 4th January 1979, the Main Market Square closed for cars.

And how is it in your countries? How has your area changed?

Hello world!

February 7th, 2012 by barankiewicz3marta3s

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