Posts Tagged ‘students’

The Less Taken Path

(March 12th, 2010)

Dear Car Riding, Gas Guzzling, Ignorant Planet Earth,

I’d like to make every day a day open to adventure. One where the eyes shift around the diverse landscape in every direction, admiring all of the earthy colors and natural architectural masterpieces.  And one breathes in the aroma of the trees and the after-effect of a rainfall to be fully enveloped in the real world. The world that we are provided, not one constructed solely by man. I’d like to step inside a consistently shifting world that shines a cheerful expression at the coming of the following season. In order to fully appreciate such a majestic world, it is really as simple as opening your eyes. What I mean is, opening up to the world around you and using all of your senses to admire it. This, I fear, is something left out of a busy work day: the simple ability to be conscious of your surroundings. A contemporary worker is droned out under the barbaric noise of a Blue-tooth headset or trapped inside a car: such an object that shields oneself from the outside world. As for myself, I feel that almost every day I can manage to catch a mighty breath of the outside world. I walk about 1.67 miles every day to get home from school. This type of activity has given rise to questioning of some students that I am familiar with. They are so used to driving from place to place in the nick of time or at least catching a ride from their friend. I do agree that driving would make the process of transportation largely smoother, but without my daily walk I just feel like a large part of me is left out of each day. As a person strongly opposed to any sort of athletic sport,  I do believe that walking is enough to get myself into shape. Physical education just forces people to do activities that they don’t want to do, so there is little, if any motivation. On my walk, I just feel so alive since I am in touch with what is around me. Walking just leads to this feeling of strength and power.  I feel as though every stride that I take has meaning towards something great. Some days I eventually feel like running to release all the strength I have accumulated from this path, this winding sidewalk that I follow for 1.67 miles. I take it all in: the trees, the grass, the sky, and I feel something that others may not experience on a day-to-day basics. I look at the cars zooming past me and I just ignore it. Not once have I felt any sort of jealousy that they could get to where they are heading faster. I look at them and see all of their suffering. I watch them wait in traffic and I can just feel the negative vibes flowing from their automobiles. I feel like smiling, I feel as though I’m doing the right thing by getting exercise, by not wasting gasoline, by taking in my surroundings. People in the cars that zoom past think they have all the power, but they are wrong. I know there will be a day, though, when I follow in their footsteps. When I get my license and my walking days would just flow out the window. Poof! All of the memory lost. I cherish it now because I am young and I know that at heart I am the champion of the sidewalks.

Preparation

(February 5th, 2010)

Dear Planet Earth,

I’ve been so jealous of Connor this whole week since he’s been given the advantage to miss school for a couple of days while his “snowfall” clears up. I feel like I need that time to relax and be care-free again. Recently I’ve started to go to a preparation class for the ACT and SAT on Thursdays. I took a practice test last week for English. I felt like I did pretty well on the grammar section but not as well on the reading. I’m just not that great at reading under a strict time limit. Of course, I have started to read a bit more recently, but I like to take it slow so that I understand everything to my greatest ability. Why must reading be so radically adjusted for exams? I really wonder when in my life my boss is going to give me a sheet of paper to read in eight minutes and then answer a whole assortment of questions based on what I remember. I didn’t even get to the last reading of the test since I was still trying to figure out my answers for the other three. Luckily there are other factors in determining whether I am worthy of getting into a certain college rather than just testing. Anyway, I’ll have to continue it for the next couple of weeks before the test starts. I have been getting rides to school from a cab. My mom repetitively asks me to ask someone for a ride, but I’m just not that social. It really would take a great effort for me to ask. I had attempted to bring the topic up in computer science to someone in the same class as me, but someone else in the class turned it into a joke and then I just decided to never bring it up again.

Tutoring was a blast on Friday. I had an opportunity to actually teach someone a little something about Mathematics. Every tutoring session is completely up to the chance of the draw; I was so excited when the luck of the draw went to me. There was a student who came in (most likely a sophomore) who needed help with Advanced Algebra. I kindly accepted the challenge and asked the boy what he needed help with. To my surprise, he had told me that he wanted to look ahead at future chapters in his textbook that he had not gone over yet in class. I was a little skeptical that this would turn out well, but it ended up being a blast. I was finally given the opportunity to teach this over-achiever something new! I covered several random chapters that he had flipped through in the book at random and taught him everything he needed to know on the subject. I felt so honored to be giving out knowledge instead of just helping a student master a topic.

Please, No Homework…

Labor Day is an honorable holiday that should be celebrated all around. It is a day to recognize the most diligent workers in our world. We’ve all contributed to our society with our back-breaking labor and this is such a day where we are all given back what we deserve: a day off to enjoy with family and friends. Both teachers and students need to enjoy such a day away from laborious tasks at school.

We need to step out of that box that society has forced everyone in.
To settle down momentarily and take pleasure in comforting recreation.
To open up and calm down the mind from all that stress.
Have a sense of refreshment, fulfillment, and enjoyment…

Wouldn’t that be delightful? If just for once, maybe we could all use this time to reflect. Instead of being caught finishing up that last bit of Physics homework, or stressed out trying to study for that last minute test in Algebra, maybe we could just escape, to run liberated with our labor free weekend that you will gratefully and kindhearted supply to us.

Of course, this will also have a benefit to you, the all powerful teacher. By not presenting us with homework over this long, care-free weekend, you will also share the enjoyment of not having anything to grade from us. We will also to be attentive to learn in class coming back after our relaxing Labor Day weekend. With all that time to enjoy the peace and harmony, we will return with vivid, live faces, ready to return into the school curriculum.

Even if you are still considering assigning the homework anyway, please keep in mind that there are other ways to motivate us if you are compassionate enough not to assign homework. You can persuade us to obtain more knowledge. We will be motivated, moved, and feel the desire to gain a higher level of education on our own with your guidance.

Please, from the bottom of your heart, have the sympathy to not assign any homework over Labor Day weekend.

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