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Jonesn4burgers's avatar

What was school like for you?

Asked by Jonesn4burgers (7186points) August 7th, 2014

There has been some discussion lately about schools. Some jellies are either teachers, or are working hard to become a teacher. All of us have attended school. Some of us have children or even grandchildren in school.
What was school like for you? Were you bullied? Were your grades shimmering, or glaring? Did you feel the teachers cared? Was the school well equipped? What changes would you have made?
Have you observed many changes in schools since you attended? For better, for worse?
Did you have a school sweetheart? If so, how did that go?
Are there any school traditions you would like to share?
I am quite curious about schools around the world. Non American jellies, please share!
Extra lurve for anyone who shares their fourth grade photo! (I realize for one or two jellies that would be a charcoal drawing instead. X D )

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22 Answers

JLeslie's avatar

The thing that most stands out for me about school was it started too early in the morning. It was dreadful, even painful, waking up in the morning, especially by the jr. high years, and high school even worse.

In elementary school I did extremely well. School was pretty easy for me. I especially liked my second and third grade teachers. Class was fun those years and they were pretty women, fairly young, especially my second grade teacher, and I loved being around them. My first elementary school, I was there through fourth grade, had excellent playgrounds, a fabulous art and music program, and in retrospect I think it was a wonderful school. Kids were encouraged to be creative, but at the same time all the academics were being taught. In fourth grade my teacher upset me a few times. He was a man, and I don’t remember exactly why I would get upset. I now see some of the great things he did though. I remember one boy in my class really excelled; very smart. My teacher challenged him with more advanced books and subject matter. He really looked at each one of us as individuals I think. I didn’t really understand it at the time.

My second elementary school the playgrounds were very dissappointing. The music class was just a teacher who played the piano and we sang along. No instruments for us to play, nothing. I was way ahead in math compared to the other kids in my grade at this school. One good thing was kids were divided into groups by skill level. In sixth grade we actually moved around to another teacher for some subjects if we were in a more advanced group. I think that was a great idea. In my case it was two sixth grade teachers, but in some parts of the school different grade level teachers worked together.

Jr. High and High School I learned a ton. I still reference things today. When people say they learned nothing in school I just don’t understand it. Basics about biology, genetics, math, writing, anatomy and physiology, sports, giving speeches, accounting, wood working, leather working, government, geography and so much more I learned in secondary school. Saying all that, I would have learned much more and done much better if school had started an hour later. My teachers overall were good. I can only think of a couple that I did not like and I think it had more to do with the subject matter.

Mimishu1995's avatar

- Primary school:

I can’t share much about primary school because I have a vague memory about that. But I still remember some of the teaching methods there because they still apply to primary schools at the moment. All students from grade 1 to 5 are asked to wrap their notebooks with a set of colors: the red notebook is for math, the blue notebook is for language, blah blah blah. They changed colors every year, which was just tiring to parents who had to wrap their children’s notebooks. At school, the main teacher taught everything except art, English and music. Most teachers were helpful, except for one in grade four. She was an ass :P

I do remember that even at that age, there was a distance between boys and girls. Boys loved to run around and play video games (they even open a lot of game discussion at school). Girls tended to stick around chatting and movies. I have to say that the girls were less forgiving than boys. They even had a “system” of body language indicating friendship status! As to my grade, it was good. Not the best, but was good.

- Secondary school:

The teaching method drastically changed: the color system disappeared, there were no more multifunctional teachers. The main teachers now only taught one subject, and they were appointed main teachers because they were in charge of most class activities. Not to mention the addition of more subjects. That was quite a shock to me. I actually got bad grade during my first time at secondary school. Because there were more teachers now, I got to know more unhelpful teachers. Some teachers even went to far as to make the lives of any students they didn’t like miserable, using many methods :(

Us students were more influenced by pop culture now. Most students had their own “idols”, and the most popular talk was about the idols. Some were even distracted from learning by the idols :( This was also the time for many student scandals, more fighting, more bullying, more dating… Luckily I wasn’t involved in any of those things, so my learning wasn’t affected. I managed to stay in the top 5 during the time :) My class actually had the most naughty students. Some were into bully, others didn’t want to learn… I was appointed class president, policing those students. That was hard work I have to say. I sometimes got bullied too, but because I was the class president, the teachers always came for the rescue :P

- High school:

Actually, to get to high school, I had to take an exam. I enrolled for a school, take an exam, and the score would determine whether I could study there. I managed to be chosen to one of the best school here. The teaching methods weren’t so different from secondary school.

But to tell the truth, high school was pretty traumatic. My classmates were so competitive, they could do anything for a higher grade, even if that could mean “destroying” other students. They created separated groups and just stuck to them. I couldn’t fit in any of the group because I didn’t meet their “requirements”. As a result, I had to work things out on my own, while being “attacked” often. I had no friend at high school. I was always lonely. I couldn’t share anything to anyone. At recess I just sat in one place minding my work while others went out and played. I really wanted to fit in, but it was impossible. My learning was also affected a little. I’m glad I passed high school finally.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

My high school was a big party with some learning thrown in. And my house was party central.

livelaughlove21's avatar

Short Answer: School sucked.

Long Answer: Elementary school was fine until I had to switch schools in the 3rd grade and I went from being extroverted and well-liked to shy and reclusive with really low self-esteem. Gaining weight afterward didn’t help. I moved to another state for middle school and that was probably the most miserable three years of my life. Nothing really horrible happened; it’s just a really awkward age and I was just very unhappy. In high school, there were good times and bad times but I was ecstatic to get the hell out. College was a huge improvement, but that’s mostly because I didn’t live on campus and I just focused on attending my classes and going home as opposed to making friends and attending frat parties. By the time I got to the university, I was married, so I had a different lifestyle than most of those people.

No, I wasn’t bullied in the traditional sense. I had my fair share of mean comments from little bratty kids and, of course, dealing with bitches in high school that claim to be your friends, but that’s about it.

My grades were always great, and I didn’t have to try all that hard for it. My high school GPA was a 4.0 and my college GPA was a 3.7. I’ve never pulled an all-nighter or spent hours upon hours studying for one exam. The academics came easy to me; it was the social stuff that sucked.

The schools I went to were fine; the teachers were fine. My high school is in a more “uppity” part of town and it was only 4 years old when I began going there, so it as very well-equipped. School sucking had nothing to do with the school or the school personnel – it had to do with me and the other students. Kids are assholes, plain and simple. I didn’t develop a healthy self-esteem until I was out of high school.

I did have a high school sweetheart. He was my first real boyfriend and I met him the summer before my senior year (late bloomer over here). I’m now married to him.

SecondHandStoke's avatar


School (sigh).

Things started out fine. Attended a private kindergarten. Went in reading at a sixth grade level. Was being taught French and German. I was put in some elementary school classes. I was very excited but it was sometimes awkward.

Then a move to Florida just in time for elementary school. Grades plummeted. I realize now the move depressed me terribly. Got sick of hearing “he’s just not applying himself.” Socially everything was ok.

Teachers became increasingly frustrated with me. Vented their frustration with everything from humiliation to adult contact. Was challenged to a brief in front of class makeout session. Another teacher had me sit with her in her car while she ate lunch for weeks. A part of me was a little crushed when it ended. Yet another teacher resorted to paddling me after I led a class mutiny against her. I told her flatly that she was enjoying the spanking she was giving me. She stopped to calm down. (Years later this teacher’s daughter became a BFF with benefits, showed me pictures of her mom and husband sucking on a cock. I told my BFF how much I wanted to hatefuck her mother. BFF just nodded with understanding). This woman was a bitch first class, to her daughter as well.

Middle and High school I struggled to stay interested. I would frequently skip the entire day to bicycle as much as 60 miles (I was on the cycling team). By now teachers either hated or pitied me. Many of them knew I knew I was easily smarter than them. Most grew tired of my shutting down political debates with logic. I was invited to a panel in front of the whole school. Did that once. Whatever.

College was a challenge. Design school was full of pretentious prigs. I raised general heck. Rallied for the “rights” of straights to have their SOs stay the night in the dorms. Modeled for photography students for kicks. I have an education in Industrial Design. Hooray.

Aethelwine's avatar

I hated it. I was very quiet and shy and everyone liked to tell me how quiet and shy I was. That didn’t help my situation at all. Few people took the time to get to know me, but at least the few who did are still good friends of mine. My 25 year high school reunion is this year and I am not going. I’d like to forget my high school days.

SQUEEKY2's avatar

I hated school with a passion, public school is more of a day care than an educational system, remove all the bullcrap and you could be totally done in about 5 and a half years instead of 12.

dxs's avatar

Elementary School: I went to elementary and middle school in Providence, where we were living at the time. I was smarter than everyone else, so I’d be bored with school. I already knew multiplication and all of the US states and their capitals by the time I entered kindergarten. Someone I knew told me later on that I used to just walk out of the classroom at my own desire. I also had a lot of anger problems. I’d have temper tantrums, throw chairs around, and yell at everybody, including teachers. I got suspended many times, one of them I recall was for hitting someone in the head with a pencil box.

Middle School: Does anyone like this age? I didn’t keep up with myself, so I ended up doing terrible in class. I didn’t care about school. I was a typical middle schooler who was interested in stupid things and thought school was dumb. I was really awkward and I can’t even think back on it without being embarrassed.

High School: I went to a Catholic school in the Providence suburbs where my parents and I now lived. I was two people in high school…the whole thing was an identity crisis. I started out as the first person, and then around the middle of my junior year I became the other person. It’s when I really started to get to know reality. I went in as a bratty teenager who was also very passionate about religion and thought I was the shit. (But at the same time, I also lacked self-confidence.) I was living in a bubble.
I started to turn into the next person during my junior year. That’s when I rejoined Fluther for the third time and I became smart enough to actually listen to what people had to say. It gave me a dose of what life was like outside of religion and suburbia. I remember someone yelling at me for calling someone else a faggot. That person really but things into perspective for me, too. Around this time, half-way through my junior year, is when I started becoming who I really think I am. It’s when I formed the beliefs (or lack thereof—I’m atheistic now) and values I have today. It became a struggle with people around me because they were comfortable in their conservative, Christian, middle-class bubble, and I seemed to be a needle, if that makes sense. I was atheistic, more logical than emotional, socially deviant, and I guess liberal, too.
Academically, I did okay. I got Bs and Cs with a few Ds. A’s in math, however, except for junior year when I got a B the first semester. I had a shitty teacher who was probably my first inspiration to become a teacher because he was so bad. I still had that too-cool-for-school attitude for the first few years. I managed to get my GPA up to a 3.0 by the time I started applying for schools. I didn’t really feel like going to school because I felt I was going in blindly. At my private high school, it seemed like everyone was doing it just because their authorities tell them to.

College: Having a 3.0 gave me a really nice scholarship to a private school. I was so proud of my self and I thought I was lucky to have gotten this, but later on I’ll realize I was the one who ended up blindly entered something. I did really well in my first year of school: max credits both semesters, A’s in all courses except the two first-year writing courses, which I got the lowest passing grade in. In fact, I was supposed to fail the first writing class, but the professor was kind enough to bump my grade to passing because he saw I was at least trying. Socially, I did okay. I never went to a party but I went clubbing once and I hated it. I spent many weekends in my room, but I had a close group of people I’d hang out with.

Were you bullied?
In elementary and middle school I was lightly bullied. I did some bullying myself, though. Any time after that, I was smart enough to not let other people bother me.

Were your grades shimmering, or glaring?
In elementary school, my grades were good academically. They’d be perfect if I cared. But the non-academic grades were terrible. I remember the report cards, too. You’d get graded on things like behavior, attention, etc. There were around 12 boxes on the report card, and in each was one of these letters: O, VG, G, S, NP. They stood for Outstanding, Very Good, Good, Satisfactory, Not Passing. I remember my first-grade report card—every box had “NP” in them.
Middle school and high school were okay, college is excellent so far.

Did you feel the teachers cared?
Not always. It’s interesting to tutor middle schoolers now. Back then, when I did something wrong and felt that I was right and others were unfair, they told me I’m wrong and need to grow up, etc. Now, looking back at how some of the teachers treat the middle schoolers, I find the altercations totally in favor of the students most of the time. I’m pretty sure I’m not still immature; there’s some abuse of power going on.
In high school, Catholic school teachers weren’t always the best, either.

Was the school well equipped?
Having gone to a Catholic school, I only realized how much I missed out on when I look back now and have knowledge of what other schools do. There were so many more electives offered at public schools, and more of an opportunity to take them, too. The curriculum at my school was pretty set up. The electives I chose were: geography, US Contemp History, Genetics, Microbiology (hell), and Music Theory. They forced us to take a theology elective, so I chose World Religions. I wish I’d taken more useful classes like how some describe as “Home Ec”. I wish I knew more about cars, electricity, plumbing, and other handyman things. Those would have benefitted me so much more, but instead I learned about Jesus and whatever bullshit the theology teachers decided to make up.

What changes would you have made?
Public schools throughout. I wish I’d spent high school in a better neighborhood. I wish I would have realized that public colleges offer more than private colleges. Just because a private college is more, doesn’t necessarily mean it is better. Now, I haven’t been to a public college, but they seem to offer so much more. I thought I was getting a deal because here at a private college, I’m paying the same as I would a state school. But they offer so much less.

Have you observed many changes in schools since you attended? For better, for worse?
Yes. The aforementioned stuff. I didn’t realize just how bad it was until I compared it to other schools. I’m sure my high school was better than an inner city high school, though, so I’m thankful it wasn’t that bad.

Did you have a school sweetheart? If so, how did that go?
No. I’ve had no relationships and don’t think I can have a relationship. I had a “girlfriend” in middle school, but that was only because of the stupid im-so-grown-up atmosphere.

Are there any school traditions you would like to share?
At my high school, we prayed not only at the beginning and end of the day, but before every class, too. There was this one theology teacher who was notoriously mean. Someone got suspended for posting a pic of her making her look like a devil. She was standing next to her door, room 111, and the ones were turned into the ends of a pitchfork. I had her junior year, but now she was on the third floor haha. She wasn’t as bad as people made her out to be. I think she was a nice lady up front (we were at odds in most issues), but she couldn’t control the words that came out of her mouth. There was a girl in my class who was Hindu. One time, the Hindu girl asked a question and she responded with “Ugh! Leave it to the Hindu to cause problems!” I think she was joking and I think she just spoke without thinking. I hope…

Pachy's avatar

From elementary through high school, I was insecure, shy, unpopular, occasionally bullied (nothing more than teasing, kicks in the shins and one short fight), and barely an average-grade student. Except for brief bursts of activity achievement, I felt perennially like a fish out of water. It was like there was a huge book somewhere that told you everything you needed to know to be a success, and everybody else had read it except me!

In later years, I learned from former class-mates that they felt pretty much the way, but it was too late for consolation.

ucme's avatar


Mariah's avatar

I had a pretty atypical school experience.

I was obnoxiously smart when I was very young. After a certain point it stopped coming naturally for me but I was still exceptional if I put in a lot of hard work. And I did, because I had built up my identity around being the “smart kid” and that was the source of my self-esteem. I was a terrible perfectionist through high school.

I was not a cool kid and was the butt of a lot of mean jokes in adolescence until I learned how to become invisible in high school. That was pretty effective, I didn’t get noticed at all anymore but it was better than receiving bad attention.

The universe threw in a fun little twist at age 14 though in the form of an autoimmune disease. I was extremely ill for much of high school. My disease was aggravated by stress, which turned my little perfectionism act from simply unpleasant to actually dangerous. It forced me to learn a lot of hard lessons and I’m probably a better person now than I would be if it all hadn’t happened – I broke out of that perfectionism mindset, which may never have happened otherwise – but damn, it was a struggle for a long time.

I had a few very meaningful friendships. I made my best friend at age three and we are still very close, although we went away to college in different states.

My high school was a tiny piece of shit in the middle of a cornfield that offered very few classes that have turned out to be useful to me in college. I took all the hard classes, of course, so I got the best education I could have there, at least. I graduated valedictorian because I refused to rest even when I was in the ICU because I was an idiot with fucked up priorities.

College is another story. I’m not the smart kid, and I am mostly fine with that fact. I am sane, healthy, and happy. I came out of my shell. I participate in a lot of meaningful extracurricular groups and have a lot of friends. I like myself. I wish I could have learned these lessons sooner, but I’m glad I learned them at all. It required a change of scenery more than anything.

Jonesn4burgers's avatar

The shares here are positively remarkble! I love the brvery, and the caring enough to share.
@Mariah, ..............................just…....................DAMN! Way to put it out there, girl!
When I asked this question, I thought I would get thirty, “skool suked” and maybe two shares.
What an awesome turnout!
@ucme, see, aren’t you learned to spell that?
@dxs I get what you mean about the lousey teacher. For the same reason I almost became a teacher.

SecondHandStoke's avatar


Yeah, there were bullies.

My clique wasn’t a typical target but the dimwitted lumberjack types would shove others around. I used one liners to slice them to ribbons while they had no idea what had happened to them. My people and others around either howled with laughter or just stood by, stunned.

Yes, my big mouth sometimes got me into trouble with students as well as the teachers I mentioned above, but I could fun faster than nearly anyone.

Bullies. I hated seeing what happened to some poor souls around me. When Columbine (greetings NSA peeps) happened I couldn’t help but feel a vindication. Bullies crossed the line.

Anything could happen as a result, and did.

Apologies in advance. I hope this great thread isn’t wrecked by a gun control debate.

stanleybmanly's avatar

School came easy for me. The problem was that I had absolutely no interest in academic achievement, and lacked the sense to pretend otherwise. My grade school years were spent in 2 different Catholic schools, staffed by combat grade nuns with (I swear) stubble on their square chins. Sometime when I was in the 7th grade, my mother snatched the 4 of us from the catholic school over some mysterious dispute with the diocese and placed us in the public school system where I went to the local Jr. high school. Just before the start of the second semester of my 8th grade year, we were abruptly pulled from public school back to the Catholic school to our considerable annoyance. It was Mass every morning at the Catholic school, and my siblings and I had enjoyed the reprieve from the tiresome monotony. I spent my first year of high school in a Jesuit prep school, without a soul from my past. I whined so incessantly about the interminable bus ride as well as the rigors of the demerit system, that my parents agreed to my transfer to the public high school in the district renowned for academic achievement.

And here we come to some abrupt surprises to my perspective. It turned out that the edifice for academic attainment was built on the rock solid foundation of a hefty contingent of Jewish kids who took grades and achievement SERIOUSLY. At least at this school, there were people from my neighborhood that I’d grown up with, including a few from my grade school. The other major change peculiar to my new high school, was that unlike my all boy prep school gulag, the new place had an unholy assemblage of very smart, very pretty girls. At the time, I wasn’t a bit aware of the significance of those Jewish kids, but the dazzling girls were of course quite another matter. Without realizing it, I had landed in a place where the competition for grades was intense amongst my classmates including the pretty ones. But this story can go on forever, and is perfectly useless regarding things learned.

There is only one great lesson that I took from my many wasted years of education, and it is this: There is nothing as critical to the motivation of a kid and the acquisition of knowledge as a good and inspirational teacher. Even in my day, they were few and far between, but for the 5 or 6 that I shall remember forever, their influence was absolutely crucial to my lucky life. It troubles me no end that a profession so critical to influencing not only my direction, but our society at large has been degraded to a degree that no wise soul would trouble with it. I think the evidence abounds that we are paying DEARLY for this, and things are doomed to only get worse.

Dutchess_III's avatar

I loved school!

SecondHandStoke's avatar

^^ “Catholic School

Vicious as Roman Rule…”

zenvelo's avatar

For most of my educational career through 12th grade, school was mostly a day care center with occasional spurts of learning some fascinating things.

There were extensive periods where class was uncontrolled bedlam- third and fourth grade in a parochial school in Harrison NY with 45 kids in the class; 8th grade home room where all the misfits from the carefully contrived 7th grade classes were mixed into an oddball soup.

And there were some highlights, particularly my math experience in high school in an accelerated class, and also some brilliant English teachers (3 out of 4) who introduced some great authors to me.

But most of it was a wasteland. I am an autodidact for the most part.

And, I was always able to get along with most groups, so socially I was okay, Nothing a beer or a joint can’t solve.

SadieMartinPaul's avatar

I went to a wonderful private high school. There were maybe 80 kids in my graduating class, so everyone knew everybody. Classes were small and the teacher-student ratio was amazing. Yes, it was a nice experience.

I was a cheerleader, but I wasn’t a Mean Girl. I preferred to hang out with students who were smart, talented, or otherwise interesting.

I once saw a classmate bullying some little kids (we had grades 7 – 12, so there was quite an age mixture). This guy was maybe 18-years-old, and he was picking on kids age 12 – hitting them, twisting their arms, etc. I asked him why he got so much pleasure from touching little boys. I think that comment inmmediately ended his intimidate reign.

snowberry's avatar

I have to work hard to remember any positive memories about school. A few months ago I was totally caught off guard when I discovered that some people actually loved school. I was bullied in 3rd and 4th grade. I put a stop to it when I beat my bully (a boy) to a pulp. After that I was simply shunned, which I thought was an improvement.

I started out in public school. I was extremely depressed all through school. I finally flunked out of 3rd grade, and my parents sent me to a weird psychologist who wanted to play dolls with me. He was creepy and I wouldn’t talk to him. By 5th grade my parents sent me to a fancy private school. It was better because the teachers were better and the classes were smaller, but it still wasn’t fun, and I didn’t have any friends there either.

High school continued as a massive drag, but now that I think about it, there were a couple of classes that I really liked. My private school was well equipped. Sports classes included tennis, track, softball, basket ball, and skiing. I perfected my skiing there.

For prom I had no date, and my mom and another mother got together and decided her dateless son and me should go to the prom together (won’t they look cute)! I figured out why nobody would go to the prom with him. He was a lecher and all around jerk. I never told my mom.

Jonesn4burgers's avatar


SecondHandStoke's avatar

Thank you for the hug.

I needed it.

BIEBS 4 LYFE #######

AshlynM's avatar

I was an average student, did well enough to get by. I was pretty much a wallflower all through middle and high school.
I went to a public high school freshman year and then private, all girls school the rest.

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