When annotating, I tend to ask a lot of questions, but I also mark other important pieces. I ask questions both when something doesn’t make sense to me and when I want to challenge what the author it saying. The other things I tend to mark are quotes that I like or want to use, claims that will be important to argue, places that I may want to go back to, and main themes of the piece so that I can go back through and remember my original train of thought. All of these things help me to form a solid argument and easily access the points or quotes I want to exemplify. Throughout this semester, I have been able to better my active reading and critical thinking. Susan Gilroy suggests that this allows one to have a conversation with themself. This was very clear to me when I would ask the author questions in my head and then they’d be answered. Not only did I ponder statements and develop questions about things that confused or surprised me, but I was able to almost predict what the author would logically talk about next because I paid very close attention and used my knowledge as a writer. Next, Gilroy suggests that instead of summarizing, one should tear apart the information and then put it back together to make it meaningful to yourself. I learned to do this by reading very intensively, and noticed that when I was able to read back through my annotations or my informal responses and I could figure out what the piece was saying to me and think about how I might use this to argue either for or against its message. Another piece discussed by Gilroy that I have improved on is to think about how different pieces relate to other pieces we have read, other papers we have written and other exercises we have done in class. This significantly helped me to build my argument.