I don’t look forward to going to school. Sunday nights just give me the worst feeling. Why do many students feel this way? Education is one of the most valued sources in life. Yet, at Las Lomas, we rarely take advantage of what we have. In third world countries, many kids don’t have the opportunity to receive a good education. They have dreams, such as becoming doctors and surgeons, whereas some students in Las Lomas don’t have as high expectations for themselves. I am not saying that nobody has motivation, because it differs from person to person; but some people take advantage of their educations when it’s handed to them.
Some students don’t have the drive to be great or focus on their futures by putting effort in on homework and studying for tests, because it is not something that they find enjoyable or worthwhile when they are demanded to do it so often. Does this mean we are ungrateful? No. Just because we get an education while others can’t doesn’t mean we must work our hardest every single day to be the best. In a community like Walnut Creek, the majority of students go college. Some kids do the work, while others feel free to slack off. Some just don’t care one way or another about going to college because there is no drive to succeed. I think there is no motivation for some students because their opinions on school are deteriorated by things like the media, home life and friends. When the media portrays school negatively, it convinces students that school is bad.
Everyone’s opinion is different on what he or she wants to do with his or her life, but it is rare that someone receives a good job without an adequate education. And I’m pretty sure none of us aspire not to have a job and live on the street.
Another reason people aren’t motivated is because the pressure to do well in school is so tremendous that it makes kids want to give up on school altogether. When we have lots of homework, we often get discouraged and don’t do it. A Race to Nowhere described how schools receiving less homework led to higher test scores. Additionally, students didn’t dislike school as much because they didn’t have as much to do.
When teachers say that they have a fun day planned and it involves something like taking notes on the different stages of cells (or getting lectured by a teacher who speaks so slow and uninteresting that even the flies in the room seem to be moving slower), you want to give up on trying in school. One way to get students to like school more is to get them interested. I have often had a teacher that doesn’t really love to teach and never showed a passion in their subject, and when your teacher isn’t passionate about his or her subject, it is hard for a student to get interested.
Teachers need to ask their students how they can get them interested and motivated. Almost all students have ideas or ways to make school better. Some students would simply say less homework is a solution, but others might actually have suggestions that teachers could adapt to. There are a million different ways teachers can make school better for the average student, they just have to find them.