This I Believe

Chris - Forest Hills, New York
Entered on April 16, 2007
Age Group: Under 18

As a child in elementary school I was an average student, carefree, and full of frolic. In my report cards for almost all of my classes, I would get an S got satisfactory. I was never one of the brightest students in the school. Sixth grade was the last grade in my school until I would go to junior high school. During our last hours together, my teacher and I had a discussion about school. We spoke about school and about my future, how my grades in junior high affect what high school I would get into, and how grades in high school affect what college I go to. After that talk with my teacher, I began to believe in the importance of school.

Using my teacher’s words as a form of encouragement, I began to become a better student, an honor roll student. By seventh grade, I would see my grades in the high nineties. Although I had a breakthrough in seventh grade, I broke down during eighth grade. Knowing that I got into a great high school, I started to think that I didn’t need to work hard anymore. My grades were declining to the low nineties. I experienced the worst enemy of any teenager, stress. I carried on my stress and declining grades to high school.

During the first couple of marking periods, my grades were at the low nineties and high eighties mark. I realized how much harder my new school is and the expectation level. I struggled and struggled during the beginning of high school. My faith in my abilities to perform well in high school faded. At the end of my first term in high school, I found out that I did much better than during the beginning and middle of my first term, but not adequately good enough with the amount of effort that I put into it. My first thought after my first term was that I was not good enough for this school. In-between the first and second terms of high school was a vacation.

During that vacation, I looked through my old notes from when I was just a child. In my writing notebook, I saw the name of my old teacher, the one who encouraged me and was always there to help me. I remembered that I believed in the importance of school and trying hard with a strong ambition for my future. From there, I spent more time focusing on school than I ever did before.