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Author: Elaine Bell


On Self-Efficacy and Practical Intelligence: Elaine Bell ’16 at Sunfield Farm and Waldorf School in Port Hadlock-Irondale, Washington

Feb 08, 2016

Originally I said in my Learning Objectives that I wanted to be able to journal about my experiences and in that way be able to reflect and process my learning experiences. I had difficulty keeping up with it after exhausting days spent outside, and I stopped writing in it after the first month. However, I kept a blog throughout my co-op. Holding myself accountable to others wanting to hear about my experiences helped me organize and process what I was learning personally from each week. For example, one week I wrote about my observations about the difficulties of working for a non-profit organization, another week I expressed the struggle of being the youngest in a professional setting, and one time I wrote about finding my place in the family I stayed with for three months.

One occurrence led me to write a blog post about Nicole being an inspiration to young girls as an independent woman farmer. A couple months into my stay we were building a house for the goats to stay in out in their pasture, and I was feeling timid about the power tools. Nicole looked me in the eye and told me straightforwardly that I was the only one holding myself back, and that I had allowed self-created social barriers to block my abilities. It was a pivotal moment for me, because no one had ever been so honest and encouraging at the same time about my timidity. After reflecting on it and writing about it for my blog, I opened my mind to my abilities as a young woman, and it helped me decide that I am the only one stopping myself from doing something, not just in farming, but anything that I do.