School Curriculum Falls Short

How much of the material taught in high school actually has a practical use in our daily lives outside of the classroom? I don’t know how to do taxes, write a resume, or open a bank account, but thank my lucky stars I know all about the pythagorean theorem. Let’s face it: The school’s curriculum falls miserably short of giving students the knowledge and practical skills they need to know to succeed on their own in the adult world. High school needs to focus more on preparing students for life than forcing textbook facts into their brains that may be quickly forgotten. Adults throughout history wish high school better prepared them for life.

In a survey of 100 people over the age of 18 every single one of them said they wished they had learned something more in depth in subjects that would help them in the long run. Google has become a best friend to young adults because it is a go-to for things they either do not recall from high school or just a quick way to find out more than what they were taught. Young adults can learn so much more in 30 seconds on google than 8 hours of sitting through boring high school classes.High schools act like we always have parental figures to teach us how to manage a bank account or take out loans when some of us don’t. High school should be able to teach students the things parents teach their kids for those without competent parents, and further reinforce these things for students with good parents.

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All in all, high school should focus less on the academic side of learning and put some more effort into teaching life skills. Teens that struggle academically may feel stupid or believe that others are better than them, which often leads to depression and self loathing. Teens that struggle academically usually do not have the motivation to exceed or even meet the standards that are set for them. Students that are academically inclined have most likely found easy ways to put as little effort into the material as possible while still meeting the standards that are being asked of them. Most of the information we are taught is just simple memorization that is thrown at us for an exam or test.

After the exam this information is often forgotten, because there is no further need to know such information. Classes that teens sit through are also usually boring and are irrelevant to their lives, causing students to zone out and be less engaged in the material. Academically inclined students are seldomly truly intrigued and rarely transformed by their learning; they mostly just coast through high school without putting in effort. This also means that they lack the work ethic needed for the adult world, as they are used to everything coming easy to them. High school does not teach these students work ethic and they are slammed with reality when they either go to college or enter the workforce. Having good grades doesn’t teach you anything about yourself, it just tells you that you’re good at retrieving information that the teacher told you.

Students should be able to choose material that interests them, because they will be more willing to learn and keep the information in their mind after the exams. For example, I like biology, and I think that biology and anatomy are good classes to take. I actually know a lot about it because it interests me.In the Sweet Home School District and many others it is mandatory to get an art credit to graduate, which most people find ridiculous because some people just don’t like art or they are not very good at it. Why then, are we forced to take it? The school curriculum should be reformed to become more responsive to student’s abilities to create an individual experience rather than forcing them to conform to standards. A student’s inability to meet standards can hurt him or her psychologically, when there is nothing wrong with it.

School should be a place where kids can find what they love and get answers to the questions that interest them. Instead, school is a place where students are taught only what they need to know to pass a test or exam. Students spend hours sitting through boring lectures and filling out school work or notes, when they could understand the same information much quicker by using google, saving vast amounts of time. Students could then put this time to a more productive use, such as learning life skills or even working to make money to help with the high cost of college. Schools teach kids to fear failure when we should embrace it.

Some students just are not good at certain things such as memorization or art and are penalized for it. Failure is something that everyone experiences at some point in their lives, and school is teaching kids to run away from this failure. Instead, students should be taught to accept failure and learn from it. It is not the end of the world if a student fails a test or even fails a class. School continues to teach students that failure is bad, that if you fail you can not do anything with your life. This is not true and students need to stop being told this.

Most kids graduate knowing if they are good at school or not. What does that have to do with anything once we’re out of high school? Unless you are going to college after high school it does not matter whether you’re good at school or not. An employer wants to know whether you can be a good worker or not. An employer does not care whether or not you were good at writing ‘true essays’ or if you aced global history. We are born curious but by the time we hit sophomore year we have all but lost curiosity because school has tried to satisfy this curiosity with needless and uninteresting information.

I understand that the current curriculum is what we’ve always been used to, and changing that would make it difficult for current students and teachers to adapt. However, since most high school graduates still do not know how to do simple household tasks, a change to the curriculum is necessary. Even college some college students still don’t know how to clean properly or find a house/apartment to live in or what to look for to find a good one. A bad grade doesn’t mean you’re stupid it just means you may not be academically inclined or just don’t apply yourself. Being academic or not does not mean you don’t have useful skills. A change to the curriculum is more than necessary, because the current curriculum forces students to conform to a standard, does not teach them needed life skills, and does not help them discover themselves.