Thursday, June 27, 2013

Slow, But Able To Express Myself

I realized I spend more time learning in the Statler Building than I spend sleeping in my room. Today was a new record. I spent about twelve hours in the building and I slept for six hours last night before. Of course not everyone spends that much time there. I could’ve spent about eight hours there, like a normal hotel student, but I needed to stay in the computer lab to do as much of my work as possible. It also didn't help that I tend to grasp information slower compared to my peers.

It was a long twelve hours full of reading and rereading my work. I think I’m a bit of a perfectionist when it comes to writing. I overanalyze my words and lose sleep while others are naturally great writers and sleep early. My behavioral-style, Analyzer-Stabilizer, is proving to be very true. However, Reneta told us today that each one of us probably has a bit of each behavioral-style (Controller, Persuader, Analyzer, and Stabilizer). It’s just a matter of which ones are dominant. She even said that throughout the course, we will be learning how to embrace our other behavioral-styles in the hopes that we will become well-rounded students.

Besides working hard for the course, I’ve been making more friends. I met an Ethiopian girl, Bernie, today. For the past eight years, she’s lived in Washington D.C. When I went to the nation’s capital in eighth grade, I was very excited because there were so many beautiful monuments and museums. However, since Bernie grew up there, she’s quite use to the beauty and is no longer impressed by it. It’s very similar to how we ILCers probably don’t think the Golden Gate Bridge is really all that amazing. In a way, I understand how the White House wouldn’t amaze Bernie anymore, but for me, I’d be so fascinated by all the history in D.C, that I may never be bored.

Bernie attends a private school and it is very strict. In addition to a strict dress code, there are metal detectors at the door! Security guards roam the halls and cell phones are collected before school starts. I couldn’t imagine getting my phone taken away from me all day like that. I wouldn’t feel comfortable leaving my phone with someone else. What if I really needed help and there wasn't a phone around? Or what if someone steals my phone?

I’m very glad that our School District isn’t as strict as the ones I've heard of. In fact, we’re pretty lenient compared to other schools. My friend Jazmin, who lives by New York City, told me that her school doesn’t allow students to wear clothing with words. Even if the words were not offensive in any way, her school wouldn’t allow it. I was a bit surprised. I knew shirts with offensive words were prohibited in some schools, but I never knew that ALL words could be banned. What happened to freedom of expression? Just because we are students and under the age of 18, it doesn’t mean we don’t have rights to express ourselves as well.

Almost every time I ask other students about their high schools, I’m shocked and I gradually appreciate my own school a bit more. We may have dress codes, but they’re not as strict as those of the students here. I can't believe I thought MY dress codes were strict. The lengths of our shorts are at a reasonable length. While Bernie’s school has security guards roaming the halls generating fear more than anything, I'm glad my school has site supervisors promoting peace and friendliness throughout campus.

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