High school is extremely important to the growth of a child. I am a senior in high school, and I can say that school has shaped me into the person I am today, and I am glad to be educated. My education goes far beyond understanding concepts, theorems, Chemistry, art, etc. I have learned not only from my books, but from my peers, my teachers, my coaches, and my parents.
The primary purpose of school is to simply learn about the five common subjects, and extracurriculars of your choice. The five common subjects are math, science, history, English, and a language. Extracurriculars would include, say, art, journalism, music, and theater. In the five common subjects I have done my work and learned a fair amount. I have learned where my interests lay (Math and English), and where they don’t. More importantly I have learned a mammoth amount of information in subjects such as U.S. History and Calculus. This information could be vital in what my occupation is as an adult. I have learned to enjoy what I read, and write with pride. These subjects have taught me much, as they should, considering the amount of time I have put in. That is where the true success and lesson is to be learned. The time I have put in has taught me more than anything. Over the past four years I have developed a serious work ethic, in a way that I have grown to enjoy working. Without this work ethic, I wouldn’t be rightfully prepared for a career. Teaching a child to dedicate time and effort is the key to high school. This has put me in a position to work hard and long wherever I end up.
Beyond books, the people who explain and clarify the books are another source of growth for a high school student. As a pupil, I have come to love my teachers. These people have helped me grow and obviously, learn. I follow my teachers. They have such a passion for teaching whatever subject they love, and it motivates me to push harder to not only learn, but enjoy that process. The best example is my old Spanish teacher. Spanish was my least favorite subject, and far from approaching any other position on my list. She was passionate, hard working, and thoughtful. I watched and tried to replicate that. She simply loved Spanish, and would do whatever she could to get me to understand it in any way possible. She wanted me to enjoy it like her, and by the end of the year I was proud of my progress. This made me happy, and I decided to take another year, breaking off from my plan to stop my language class once my requirements were fulfilled. Teachers push students when they aren’t working hard enough, applaud them when they are, help them when they need it, and are always a friend outside the classroom. These people have taught me lessons that I can carry throughout my life. In fact I have seriously considering becoming a teacher in the future, so I can hopefully have this affect on teens.
Some teachers are coaches as well, and these people also play a key role in a teens development. A teen is vulnerable to being influenced, which is why coaches must be careful, and influence their athletes the right way. My Cross Country coach is a great influence on me. While running, he motivates me to run harder and faster. More importantly, off to the side, he has motivated each athlete to take the sport seriously. Running is a blast if you make it one. He will go on a harangue about running methods and techniques, but he also will give a speech every once in a while that makes my blood pressure rise, that is completely unrelated to Cross Country. One specific speech sticks out to me. One evening, two days before a big race, a teammate said something about being a man. My coach turned and began speaking in his not so curt fashion, and I, along with the rest of the team, listened. Most teens think that they are in a higher position then they actually are. A teens coach has an advantage where almost all athletes will listen to what he or she has to say. He began speaking about what a true man is. He told the room that being a man isn’t about owning fast cars and having large muscles.
Although those things aren’t bad to have, being a man is about fighting for what you believe in, taking sacrifices for the people you love, and being beneficial and helpful when doors are closed. What you do when people aren’t looking, that is extremely important to your character. My coach has taught me a lot, and urges me every day to do my very best at everything I do, including Cross Country. He’s a great guy to follow, and I am surely not the only teammate who has been affected. That’s the beauty in sports. I have made great progress as a runner. Although I am full of pride about my times, the lessons I have learned, and the character I have built is what I will carry on in my life. My coach has helped me make this progress, and his speech concerning manhood is only one of many lessons that I have learned.
My education has also changed my perspective on life. In middle school, I was rude, and constantly asking for more. I wouldn’t listen to my elders as much as I do now. School has opened my eyes to understanding that listening to an elderly person can teach you what is important in life. Similar to what my coach taught me, my Grandmother once told me about her older brother whom I never meant. According to her, he was the best guy in town because he would do great things for people, and nobody ever knew about it. He simply didn’t want other peoples appreciation. He just wanted to help people who needed it. My Grandma was so happy telling this story that it motivated me to learn from her brother, and do my best to replicate that. It was my English teacher that told me to listen when old people speak, “they are full of wisdom”. In school, I have read in books that people almost always grow up and realize that their parents in fact had a clue what it’s like to be a teenager. Aside from loyal friends, teachers, and my brother, I can go to my parents for help. In a strange way, school has helped me learn to do this. I hope to make my parents proud while learning from them. Without a proper high school education, there is a minimal chance that I would care about my fathers advice. School has simply made me a happier and easier person. I am slowly learning how to live my life correctly, and I am proud of the progress I have made.
School can be a truly trans-formative experience for a teen. I urge every student out there to continue working hard, or begin doing so. You will not regret working, ever. Pride lasts forever. If you try harder in all aspects of life, not just science class, you will grow, mature, and find yourself fortunate. Thank you high school.