Saturday, April 18, 2015

Katniss Complaints: Advanced Classes

I've decided to start a series called Katniss Complaints which will basically be me complaining about first world problems / school. Hope you will enjoy! Let's begin!

If you know me, you know that I'm in all of the most advanced classes offered at my grade level.  While I definitely love being in a more fast paced class than normal, it comes with this expectation that advanced students are some sort of unnatural being with no emotions or life. I don't understand why a teacher, whose job is to help children, would put so much stress on them.  On average, I have about three hours of homework each night.  Let me give you my schedule for each night, which -- keep in mind -- is way less crowded than many of the kids in my class.
3:00 End of school day
3:30 arrival home
3:40 snacks and relax (Yes this is incredibly necessary to my mental health so I cannot get rid of this sacred time)
4:15  Dinner! 
4:45 Get ready for tennis
4:55 Tennis Practice
6:30 Tennis practice over, chat with friends until mum or dad arrive
6:45 Arrive home
7:00 Shower
7:45 Second dinner (4 is not an ideal time to eat but I have to so I can be fed before tennis)
8:30 Get ready for the next day
8:45 help brother with homework
8:50 Take care of face
9:15 homework
12:10 Listen to calming music in the dark to settle my thoughts so I can sleep
1:00 am Sleep
6:45am Wake up
As you can see, this schedule is not ideal.  It's not wonder why I spend my days lying in bed when I get the chance.  Technically  I kind of lied to you though, most nights, by the time it get's to homework time, I just go to bed.  This leaves me with a 30 minute lunch period to get all of my homework and studying done.  I cannot tell you how many times (especially during finals week) that I have sat in one of my classes shaking with fear because I was unable to meet unrealistic expectations.  I've been told that I'm one of the brightest brains in my grade. While, I think that this is just something my teachers that like me make up so people won't call me a nerd (which doesn't work by the way if you're reading) I still wish people thought about it and took me seriously.  To be honest, I am a huge nerd.  My favorite thing the study right now is psychology and a little bit of biology mixed in with that.  It's through psychology that I've learned that the mental health levels of many high school students today would have gotten shock therapy in the 50's. Now I know the 50's were one of those times, but I still think that that is something we should think about (sort of unintentional psychology pun there).  If I am supposedly an incredibly bright brain, why can't I propose some ideas to the school? Here's my list of ideas if any one is interested:

  1. Start school later.  In basically everyone's body there is this thing called melatonin.  Melatonin is a chemical in your brain, that when realeased, makes us tired.  According to a statement by Dr. Belen Esparis [medical director of Mount Sinai Medical Center's Sleep Disorders Center and Laboratory. ] "The way school hours work means that we're asking teens to be functional at a time in the morning when their brains are not ready."  The average high school student's brain will not release melatonin until 1 am.  If teenagers are supposed to get 9.5 hours of sleep each night, a more ideal school time would be 10:45 am - 5:45 pm?  If school ends too late, then why not make it shorter?  I don't know one kid in any of my classes that is able to stay fully attentive for the 66 minute periods we have. (Honestly my brain tunes out after twenty minutes of learning about permutations.)
  2. Ask teachers to lower the amount of homework they give. One hour of homework isn't too bad, I'll give you that. But if each teacher gives me an hour of homework then all of a sudden I have 5 hours of homework.  If every teacher were asked to give a maximum of 30 minutes of homework then even if I had the full amount of homework from all of my teachers, I'd only be doing homework for 2.5 hours, which is much preferred to 5 hours.  (Also just a quick thought:  If you assign me a really long homework assignment and then complain about grading it and expect us to feel bad for you, it won't work.  Don't assign such long assignments if you don't wish to grade for hours on end.)  If you have to make the limit an hour of homework please add a study hall period to the school day.
Thanks for reading! I hope you agree with my points or even if you don't give me a comment explaining your thoughts.
Hugs and Virtual Cookies,