Thursday, November 7, 2013

Thankful Thursday: 11/7/13

[Thankful Thursday is a weekly segment that began 1/10/13 - read why here.  I invite you to join me in practicing gratitude!]

While writing and thinking about the Korean high schoolers' big test today (and the South Korean education culture in general), I couldn't help but feel thankful for my public education in the states.  Now, U.S. public education does have its faults; there is much to be improved.  However, while in high school I did not drown in societal pressure to perform well academically.  I did not stay at school until 9pm studying every day.  I did not spend entire weekends studying or going to academies.

Rather, I had a job. I managed the girls' varsity basketball team.  I was copy editor of our newspaper. I tutored peers in math and Spanish.  I was a junior mentor to the freshmen.  I was in student council.  I sang in vocal jazz and show choir.  I competed in Future Business Leaders of America and went to their conferences.  I ran cross country my senior year.  I did lots of stuff on top of school - and still had time to hang out with friends on the weekends!

There were so many co-curricular activities available to me, and what I gained from participating in them is much more valuable to me than the intelligence I would have gained (and since forgotten) had I spent the time studying.  Even at a U.S. high school without so many co-curricular opportunities, the students still have free time in the evenings and weekends to pursue an interest or have a part-time job.
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