By Hannah Koch (284), Scholarly Advocate For Student Health And Wellbeing
If one were to walk into the modern high school classroom, they would not be blamed to have mistaken it for that of a daycare, seeing the rowdy students loudly talking to one another, as a general sense of organized pandemonium dominates the space. In fact, modern teenagers and toddlers have much in common: their irregular sleep schedules, lack of object permanence, and overall fascination with shapes and colors. But in the environment of a typical high school workspace, this childish nature is ill equipped to be fostered or nourished. Such is the way of a Central High School student, subjected to the drab appearance of an outdated building in which they must take hours upon hours of instruction, with little, to no, breaks. All of this is done in preparation for a successful future, but what is the future, if not a near present?
It is of the utmost importance that students at Central High enjoy their high school experience before being thrust into an unyielding world, and that is why I have come to you today, for I have the most peculiar suggestion. An inkling that, with proper time and care, students may even look forward to their time in school, that they may be rejuvenated by the hard work brought by their teachers and fellow peers if changes were instituted. This is why I propose that a new elective be added to the extensive roster of Central’s classes: Kindergarten, a class where kids can be kids again.
The class will include all of the amenities that students may miss from their elementary years: large tables, detached chairs, art supplies at the ready, and colorful borders all around the various whiteboards and chalkboards that litter the walls. The curriculum would cover a multitude of juvenile activities, of course suitable for all ages, such as board games, coloring worksheets, macaroni art, finger painting, safety scissors at the ready in case we really want to spice things up, circle time, and many fun group projects. In terms of the knowledge students will gain, teachers have the fortune of going through basics: the ABCs, addition, subtraction, animals, perhaps even how to read an analog clock. These lessons, although rudimentary, are in great need for many Central students. But the most quintessential parts of Kindergarten are yet to come: nap time and snack time! Each period, for about twenty minutes, the teacher will dim the lights, close the curtains, and let students sprawl across the room in any strange positions that they deem comfortable. Doesn’t a doze in the middle of the day, without the fear of a textbook being slammed against the table next to you, sound nice? Not only is it peaceful for students, but this twenty minutes of quiet will let the overworked teachers catch a break. Once students have risen from their stupor, another five to ten minutes is allotted for snack time, where students can bring out their own packed snacks, or gain permission to venture to the vending machines, and buy something there. This is a time for connection with peers, where students have the stress of school temporarily lifted, and can enjoy a few moments of peace. The great benefits of this course’s instruction, even including such things as personal hygiene habits and respect for one’s environment, would be more than welcome in Central’s roster, and I highly implore the Central administrative staff to consider what would soon be Central’s most popular elective and bring it to life.