Slowly Learning to Reach the Top

8 10 2008

In a week (less even) I and my fellow peabrainers are going to start the HSC course. Everyone always plays it up so much that we can develop this kind of fear of the last year of our schooling. We think it’ll be hard or beyond us. Well it’s not. I really don’t think it is.

We’ve been slowly taught this our whole lives, through each learning experience we have. At once being told to not-look-forward-to-something and how to cope with and approach that thing. This is the basis of the various tests we’ve been sitting for years and the exams we’ve been doing since we were 13 or 14. We all dread them, but they are slowly building us up to be able to tackle our external finals in yr 12.

Its great how it all works out. This simultaneous process of instilling fear and equipping with skills seems to be the basis of all learning, even if the instilling of fear is done unconsciously by a teacher. I learnt pretty quickly to dread music exams not from experience but from what i knew of them from my teacher. I learnt extremely quickly how to lose sleep over the speeches we were to give in yr7 and to sit at my desk with my heart beating while i listened to others speak as soon as the teacher simply explained what we had to do.

With the hsc on the other hand, it’s the way it’s played up and exagerated by so many people that makes lots of people fear it. It’s the way people tell (either subtley or not, unconcsiouly or not) us that it is the be all and end all  in determining your entire life. And the thing about the school in generalis that I used to always worry about how hard the work would be at the end of it. I used to watch my babysitter do her maths homework and wonder how I could ever do that. Now it seems simple – well not simple, but it’s certainly easier than I thought. The bottom line is, teachers of any kind (if they’re any good) are able to start from the bottom and work up, building foundations and then building on them, so that slowly, unknowingly, the student reaches the previously revered top, wondering when they gained the skills to get there. It’s a subtle process, and one that under closer examination, has been worked out beautifully and ultimately, I believe, by God, who constantly teaches us throughout our lives.

Alyssa – i sign off lots.

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