Student Sample: Students were asked to summarize information from three articles then provide an opinion or reflection.
“If you don’t work hard in school you’ll never get into college.” I know most students have heard this at some point in their educational career. This threat carries over into college as well except it turns into something like this: “If you don’t work hard in school you’ll never get a good job.” Some students just choose to ignore the warning and slack off. Others find ways around working hard and still get into college or get a good career. High school and college life is hard for some people others can just breeze through it. Things that affect this experience are peer pressure, hard transitions, and cheating.
“Will Johnny Get A’s?” by Connie Leslie is about high school students and how their peers effect how much they want to learn. A lot of people think that the parents of students and their home life effects their desire to learn but research says that the blame is on the student’s friends and the need to be “cool” or it is based on the fact that they don’t feel the need to be cool. I really agreed with the article because I thought back to my high school and realized that that stuff probably happened. Because sometimes I would be caught in a dilemma between doing my homework and going and hanging out with my friends. And I knew people who ALWAYS did their homework and hardly ever went out. And usually their friends were the same way. When I was reading the article I just kept thinking back to my peers in school.
“A Difficult Transition” by Diette Courrege is about high school freshman and their transition into high school life. Many freshman find small peer groups to hang out with. These groups sometimes affect how the teens do in school and how the rest of their high school life will turn out. Freshmen are vulnerable to being influenced by older students or their friends. Many students end up being more concerned about being popular than being worried about grades. I agreed with this article because I remember going through a lot of the things mentioned in the article. It wasn’t my freshman year so much as it was my sophomore year. I was way more concerned with going out then I was with doing homework. So I copied somebody’s homework answers to get the assignment done. I agree with how hard it is to go from middle school to high school. It was scary and at sometimes overwhelming.
“Why Do Students Cheat?” by Eli H Newberger is about cheating in school and the way students feel about cheating. A lot of students think that cheating is no big deal and that “everybody does it” Students that get good grades feel that it is harder for them because of the people who cheat. There are many mixed feeling about cheating within the student body. Honestly I cheated a couple times in high school when I forgot to do my homework the night before and my friend had done it. And I’ve also worked with a friend when the work was supposed to be done on our own sometimes. But I do understand how that makes the people that actually did the homework feel like that’s unfair that I’m going to get the same grade for work I didn’t do and they did do it. I liked reading this article because, like the others, it made me think back to my high school career and reanalyze the situations I was in.
Students in high school and college settings experience different pressures and challenges. Some find the easy way out and cheat when they forgot to do their homework or study for a test. Others will have problems adapting to college or high school life. Most will find groups of peers that help or hurt them. So in some ways, the famous “inspirational” quote about how hard work gets you farther in life, is true.