This I Believe

Vincent - Auburn, Washington
Entered on November 10, 2008
Age Group: Under 18

Working Hard Before High School Worth It?

I’m a high school student here in Washington. I’m one of the top students in my class and I work hard at what I do. It’s important for me to go to college because I already have a plan set in my mind and I know what I want to do and want to be. I was the same in elementary school and during most of my intermediate school. However, somewhere towards the end of intermediate schooling, something changed about me.

When I was in intermediate school about four years ago, I was in the eighth grade. I was a hard-working student since elementary school, and I have brought that in intermediate school. My grades were always at a 3.5 GPA or higher. But when I got to eighth grade, my grades dropped down to all Bs, even having a C in one of my classes. My parents were mad at me and were wondering why my grades were dropping, especially since I have been a high achiever since elementary school and all of it was changing in front of me. I became rather lazy and didn’t want to be bothered to do anything. All I wanted to do was hang out with my friends and play internet games with them online. That was because of what one of my teachers said to me.

My teacher said to my class: “Your grades don’t even matter before high school. All you need to do is pass your classes so that you can move onto high school. That’s when your grades would really matter. Those grades in high school depict where you would go to college”. At least that’s what I could remember from that class. But when he told me that, it brought on a lot of questions about what I’ve been doing. Have I been working too hard before the real game has even started? Was everything that I did all for naught? Have my parents, friends, and other teachers been lying to me? There were so many questions shot in my head and I eventually decided that I wouldn’t even bother trying too hard in school until high school, where it completely matters.

I let my grades drop then and my parents were having questions. My counselor even had questions but never bothered me about it. Classes weren’t too hard. I just didn’t want to try because it wouldn’t be worth it to try hard to get an A if it doesn’t matter.

Then when I moved to another intermediate school because my parents had to relocate to another house in order to keep my dad from going to Iraq from Hawaii, I finally decided that I should probably start working hard because for one, it is worth it. Those years of going through elementary and intermediate school made a mindset for me to work hard in school and keep the regular study habits. I brought my GPA back up to a 3.5 and above. I had students come to me for help and everything went back to normal.

Now here I am a junior in high school with a 3.7 GPA. I want to aspire to a 4.0 GPA for the year. I believe that working hard before high school is definitely worth it. It’s good to be a high achiever. People look for me for help in all of my classes. And it’s all because of the study habits that I developed when I was a kid ascending from elementary to intermediate school.