School is Mean.
Daily life poems

School desks are torture. Education is mean spirited.

Please, not the school desks again 🤞.

On the horrible school desks: Why I hate the school environment.

Education ejected me.

Sit still. Don’t move. Don’t think.

Stop shaking.

Raise your hand.

Speak when you are spoken to.

Speak loudly.

Be creative.

But write using APA guidelines.

Write in a straight line.

Just don’t start a story with the climax.

Think outside the box.

Think critically.

Until you move the box too much to the side.

Until it blows up.

Then, they don’t quite know what to do with you.

You no longer fit into the scheme of papers and grades.

Student struggling to study on school desk.
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

You get A’s you have to like raising your hand.

Teacher looking at student who is raising her hand while sitting on a school desk.
Photo by Katerina Holmes on Pexels.com

You need to tell someone their idea is stupid.

We don’t use the word stupid, but that’s what someone feels when you tell them their idea is wrong.

Education is mean spirited. To shine, in group participation means challenging someone else’s ideas.

The gasp of disappointment in return — cuts me deep.

Imagine all the hours they spent practicing for a speech, only for you to knock them down.

It is constructive.

Then, why do their eyes look embarrassed?

Education they say. It will make you enlightened.

I just see it as a glorified pissing contest.

Who has the sharpest comment?

Who will correct the professor or teacher?

I am not opposed to education.

Books and words are beautiful. They challenge you.

A close of a picture reflecting challenge, since school is hard.
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

They push you. 👇🏼

⬇️

👇🏼

⬇️

👇🏼

They shake you.

But , why do we all have to read the same text?


Schools are reopen

Attendance is mandatory.

This year seems like an ongoing battle between schools reopening and closing worldwide. Opened. Closed.

To show how the carona virus is playing tug of war with the students and teachers.
Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

Is school opened? Everyone is glued to their E-mails waiting to see if virtual school is still on.

The world is playing tug of war with school and university students.

There is a want/need to go back to school.

At the same time, parents and students have real fears about going to school and getting sick.

Either way it is a “lose-lose” situation.

Weird questions about schools

It is scary and alarming to find the trending searches on Google about school. People are asking if school kills creativity and causes depression. To me that is darn right sad.

Back to school feelings should not include heart palpitations, heavy sweating, and a need to crawl under the covers.

More questions… They never stop 😤

Is the strict discipline provided by all schools necessary? Do you need school? I don’t know. I still don’t have the answer to that. Maybe, we need the social aspect of school. I am unsure of the rest.

Today, many universities offer free courses. The flexibility of online schools has shown us that people can learn anything online. Success is at your fingertips if you want it.

School closings changed the way we look at schools and the entire environment. What if schools were different? Is it time for change?

Back to school, no school desks required

Imagine our children returned to the school system without a desk. But to a couch or moving table. Sitting should be an option. School desks are catered to a specific student. What about the hyperactive learners?

Chair or school desk on its own in abandoned ally.
Taken by Theresa Aoun, aka the most amazing cousin.

Is virtual school the end of school desks and chair sets?

woman studying on bed while wearing a face mask.
Photo by Sora Shimazaki on Pexels.com

Is education for everyone? In the wake of the current pandemic more and more students are turning to online studies. Virtual school has made us question the school types available.

A virtual learning environment is new and homey. It is comfortable and casual.

It is also boring. You can study from your bed, the couch, or even the ground and get the same results.

Do we really need chairs and tables? I mean yes have them around. However, do we need to force someone to sit in one, even if they are distracted?

Why I can’t sit still in school desks and chairs

Boy getting angry sitting on his desk.
Photo by RODNAE Productions on Pexels.com

I am not saying we should delete school desks. I agree most students use desks. However, what about those few who squirm on a chair?

Shaking from left to right. Slouching all the way down. Not because they want to be rude. But because their brain is telling them they cannot sit. Their mind was not made for school desks, chairs, and rooms.

I am not an expert. However, I am speaking from experience, a brisk walk around the room with a book helps me learn more than sitting.

School desks always scared me. Many times, I would plan my escape plan via a bathroom break, a fake sickness. Anything just to leave.

Different learning styles: Watching TV while working

Some students are performing better than before online. Whereas some star students are suddenly failing. This begs the question, is there something wrong with the education system?

Specifically, what can we change to make things better?

Woman working at home with daughter sitting next to her.
Photo by Ketut Subiyanto on Pexels.com

Clearly, students learn in different ways. I know I learn in a different way than my brother and sister. I like to use the TV as background noise when learning or writing. In fact, I wrote my master’s thesis while watching The Good Place.

For instance, my brother reads a text once, in total silence and that’s all it takes for him to absorb it.

He rarely attended classes. Yet, he just gets concepts. However, he always hated the classroom. He is still the smartest person I know. Why? I think it is because what little time he uses to focus on something is used to its full potential.

I waste 3 hours doing something that takes him 15 minutes. Yes, there is natural aptitude. Admittedly, he is smarter than me. I am stupider. Did you feel the need to correct me?

Grammar check: there is no stupider (depending on who you ask). While I know that and so do you. You also know what I meant by stupider. Why can’t we use terms people know? Isn’t the whole point of education to engage students?

Group learners

Conversely, my sister learns in groups. A group atmosphere helps her shine and learn better. They say, when you tutor someone, you learn something twice.

Let’s personalize education

So, why can’t we use words and lingo they understand?

We need to personalize and simplify education. Maybe, if learning was more interactive, we could reach more people.

We need to take it easy on students.
Photo by Thirdman on Pexels.com

Forget about school appropriate songs and jokes.

We need to let students express themselves as long as they don’t hurt or bully others.

While the above poem is about all the things that annoy me about education, I am not anti-education.

I read a lot. My learning style is solitary.

My attention span is too short to listen to a single person for too long.

Instead, I read the book and understand.

I pick a topic that piques my interest and I read it.

It is as simple as that.

Kids need direction not control

Moreover, I see the effects this year has had on my younger cousins. They seem lost. There needs to be a sense of order and format to their days. Or else, they do not know what to do with themselves.

Also, school is not just about education. I would argue that school is more about learning how to socialize and deal with other humans. Honestly, most of the things I have learned – were outside the classroom.

I know this seems like a list of complaints vs. solutions. It is easy to complain. If you try hard enough anything can be wrong. I agree, I will stop now. There are enough complaints in the atmosphere.

My tips and suggestions for a new learning environment style

  1. More flexibility with timetables.
    • In university, students get to pick their classes. Let high school students follow a credit system too. We should trust them enough to know what to study. If they pick their own classes, they might be more excited to attend. Forget the plans and calendars.
  2. Let people study how they want to.
    • I remember being graded on how I took notes. It was really a waste of time. Since, I never looked at them. Not everyone learns the same way. Some people learn by listening. Others via reading. Some by watching.
  3. Let the seating arrangements be more flexible. Why does it matter if a student is learning on the ground, table, desk, or while walking around?
    • I know some countries already implemented desks that move like bicycles. While I don’t think it should be forced- it can be an option. Sit on school desks or don’t, let it be their choice.
  4. Lastly, the more choices we give the more likely we are to get real engagement and intrinsic joy in school

Silver spoon prison

Recently, a famous and arguably very privileged woman, came out about the abuse she endured in school. Paris Hilton.

To many, she is a silver spoon princess. I don’t blame them. She created the narrative. Yet, for her, school was a nightmare by the means of the Provo Canyon school. Paris Hilton, a rich, famous, and successful adult still gets haunted by her school nightmares.

School should not be the cause of our trauma. In such cases, you wonder is school causing more harm?

Then again, it is not fair to compare a school that is rehabilitation style to a normal school.

It is helpful to note that according to a 2020 article, school architecture is designed after the prison system. Honestly, I have heard this before too. I am unsure if this is true. However, there were times school felt like prison to me.

Is school prison?

Furthermore, at my end, my education was a privilege. I was honestly never abused at school. I was not hit. Barely scolded. I got the best version of school. I truly believe that.

Is school prison?
Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.com

My school experience was the polar opposite or antithesis of Paris Hilton’s.

Yet, I hated it.

Somewhere along the way, I realized my personality does not fit into education.

My mind is maybe too extreme.

Students are not the problem

It is scientifically theorized, that each person can only hold 7 + or – 2 memories at a time in their short-term memory.

Then, why are classes so long?

It is no wonder why students start acting out.
No, they are not the problem. The timetable is.

I spent so much of my time at school thinking I was stupid. My voice did not matter. When asked what I thought I was good at, I never knew what to say. I didn’t think I was good at anything. School made me feel that way.

My shell was what I was made to believe was important.

woman doing leg massage with cream
Photo by Sora Shimazaki on Pexels.com

My smile.

Smiling is nice but there’s more to me.

My brain not so much.

Picture of a brain to show someone thinking.
Who needs a brain?

A goofy and loud girl, who writes outside the lines is not a fit for education.

Today, I still don’t believe I am particularly smart.

From average student to honor roll

At university, with the freedom to manage my own texts and choose my own major- I found myself passing. Suddenly, when I stopped writing notes and doing things their way I succeeded. I always try to make everything I read into a story. Mixed in with mini jokes. Or else, I can’t read them.

WHAT, I found myself passing? Math is no longer a requirement. Social science is where I shine. Weirdly, the better I did at university the worse I felt. I guess I felt like I betrayed my creativity and goofy personality.

Girl setting sadly on chair.
Bored.

Why I hate success in academia

Every step into academia and research, the further away I found myself from creativity. Suddenly, I could not write poems anymore. My love for writing was erased with theories.

My desperate need and urge to throw in some voice, some spice, and personality was pecking at my brain.

photo of a woman holding an ipad
Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.com

Urging me to let it out. Yet, that is not acceptable in a professional environment.

I never felt very smart. I still don’t.

Just because you can write, read, and parrot- does not make you special.

To me, at least. I still remember the girl I was, stuck in a chair, struggling to listen.

In many ways, I am still her. I just learned to cope.

I still can’t hear an entire conversation.

Pass me your notes

You know how there is always that kid in school, with the amazing notes, highlighted and glossed to perfection.

Their notes, the antidote to pass the class.

The antidote everyone is fighting for. Except for me.

You ask them for their notes, and they say, “Sorry, I don’t have them on me now”.

When you know, they are attached to their hip.

I had times when people asked me for notes. I genuinely never write any. If you ever saw me writing notes, I was literally writing gibberish. It is not because I want to be cool. Or, trying to look like I don’t study. I genuinely get distracted by notes. As soon as I start writing, I get lost by other words. The words that are competing in my brain. Bam. The notes are gone.

I had times when people didn’t believe me that I don’t study from notes. Why is it so hard to understand that we all study differently?

Studying in a group or alone?

I always hate studying in groups because the slow pace bores me. Everything bores me. If it takes too long to get to the point, then I don’t want to listen anymore. Then, I am stuck in a new situation. When I get bored, I start getting rowdy. Well, I just turned into the distraction.

group of students studying together on desk.
Photo by Ivan Samkov on Pexels.com

It is simple really. Open book. Read book. Start on the last chapter. I read it all the way through. That’s it. No notes. None of that. If it is hard, I read it again. And again, till I get it. I hate to get stuck on the details. Recently, I discovered that doing things in reverse is helpful.

Did you reach this far?

cute dog in glasses yawning on bed
Photo by Samson Katt on Pexels.com

I understand if you didn’t.

I always find it hard to reach the end.

Are you yawning?

I don’t take it personally. I am yawning too.

Maybe, my biggest concern with the education system, is I want to create something that doesn’t bore.

I want to create accessible work and projects anyone can understand.

I don’t want others to feel stupid or useless. No, I want them to laugh, cry, and scream.

Is it too much to ask for an education for everyone? Any theory can be taught- and simplified no matter how difficult. If you cannot say it in a simple, and straightforward manner, maybe you don’t know the topic as well as you think you do.

Full disclosure: I am writing this standing up. Thankfully, I grew up and don’t have to sit on school desks anymore.

One Comment

Hit the reply button !