Language Autobiography

A language autobiography tells the story of how you came to be the language user you are today; it focuses on those influences you perceive as most important, the ones that shape how you read, write, speak, and think. The following list offers some suggestions for constructing a language autobiography.

Write about family, friends, and teachers who taught you things about language—first words, code words, critical words. When possible, locate artifacts such as letters, diaries, and stories you wrote or letters and report cards others wrote about you.

Write about favorite books and authors, especially those that live most actively in your mind. Be specific and name titles and characters while examining why these particular stories stayed with you.

Write about the way your use of language was influenced by your neighborhood, hobbies, sports, clubs, politics, religion, and special interests of any kind. At first, it may not be obvious that these influenced your language use, but odds are they did.

Write about schools—the grades, classes, subjects, teachers, assignments, and activities that revolved around or stretched your literacy skills.

Write about your writing—remembered, retrieved, or current. What do you like to write about? How often do you write when you don't have to? What are you writing now?

Pair with a classmate and interview each other to push out ideas that you, on your own, may not recall. Practice asking each other follow-up questions: When did you read that? Why did you like it? How often were you read to? And so on.

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  • amalda underhill
    How to write language autobiography?
    6 years ago

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