I often take it for granted. Those mornings when I wish I could just shut off my alarm and get back in bed only seem to get harder as the year comes to an end. For the past four years, my Monday’s and Friday’s have started off the same way: at around 7:40 every morning I push aside my window curtain to see a line of my classmates piling into the PAC for morning meeting; I know it’s time.
We often complain about our early wakeup call, saying the announcements were “pointless” and could have easily been outlined in a simple email. But, in my opinion, Morning Meeting sets a certain tone for the entire day. This provides us with the opportunity to start our day off on a good note; being greeted by our classmates, friends, and faculty while hearing about the exciting upcoming plans and events coming to campus and acknowledging some community members’ recent achievements. One particular Morning Meeting tradition I will never forget is “Monday morning Kudos” in which Dr. Quimby distributes Kudos bars by throwing them into the crowd to members of our community whom he feels deserve recognition for their notable efforts and achievements.
Although, at times, it may seem more appealing to use the fifteen minutes of allotted time for Morning Meeting to get some extra sleep or studying done, it is a time for our entire school to come together as one. It is a time for sharing and connecting and I am grateful that it has always been this way. I know that even though next year I will appreciate a few extra minutes of sleep with my new college schedule, I will miss Morning Meeting and the cheer it brought to my day.
At most other schools, it is a rare occurrence for the entire community to come together. To be all together in one room, sitting amongst classmates, friends and faculty probably won’t ever happen when I’m in college. It’s important that I appreciate it now, instead of wishing this precious, unique type of time away. I don’t like Morning Meeting because it’s finally a time for me to give announcements about things I had been waiting to share with the school. I like it because it’s a time for me to listen. I sit back in my chair and simply listen; to my classmates, teachers, headmaster and anyone else that has something to say. Although it may get old after a few years, I’ve realized that it’s going to be these times that I’ll miss when I leave Govs. It’s these times we spend together that shape and form our community into what it is today.
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I am sure there are many students who enroll in AP courses because they truly want a challenge. However, I believe many students have lost sight of this reason. I will admit, I am one of them.
If I was to poll high school students on the reasons why they signed up for AP courses, I am almost positive the number one answer would be: “because it looks better on my college application.” But isn’t the point of APs to prepare the student better for college, not to help them get into it? College Board states that AP classes are for students to “find their passion, prepare to succeed in college, experience a different kind of class, and to earn college credit.” But in reality, these are not the only motivations.
The pressure put on high school students to take APs for college is extremely high. In my experience, for some colleges it is a make-or-break deal whether AP grades are on a transcript or not. The influence these classes have on college decision represents a severe drawback to the AP system and a glaring inconsistency.
This however, raises another question: should those students who take AP courses not get benefits for extra work and dedicating significant amounts of time into the courses, both in class and out? The AP system is a bit of a Catch 22: there is no way to solve the dilemma because APs themselves are the problem. Although some positives do exist, overall I find the system to be seriously flawed.
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It is finally over. The daunting task of filling out college applications, flipping through books and browsing the internet for what we think will be the “perfect fit,” and meeting with tutors to practice for the dreaded SAT. AP courses are winding down and those nights staying up way past our bedtime to finish our homework or study for a test have hopefully come to an end (at least until college). The college process, whose end always seemed so far out of reach, is finally over.
Now that May first has reared its head, many of us seniors have come together and let out a collective sigh of relief. As we take this breath, however, we are confronted with new anxieties and concerns. We are about to enter a whole new chapter of our lives with no idea what to expect. Many of us are looking forward to a new experience but at the same time it’s the unknown that’s making us anxious. Who will I be living with next year? Will my classes be challenging? What about my professors? There’s an endless list of questions I could ask but no one can tell me the answer. I won’t truly know the answers to these questions until I see for myself.
Although thinking of these things may make me uneasy, they are a part of the whole process. I know I’m not alone in these feelings and knowing that we are all going to be in the same position next year makes me feel a little bit better. After all, college is about experiencing new things and being pushed out of our comfort zone, right? I sure hope so!
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