Admittedly, it’s been four years since I was last in high school — but I remember it well. I went to an intensive, college-preparatory charter school in my home state of Minnesota. In many ways, I think my school prepared me for college and truly developed my analytical skills: I took Latin for six years; had a broad (and fairly deep) knowledge of the classics of the western canon; and had to take rhetoric classes all of high school. I’m grateful for my high school education, and I think I have it to thank for much of academic success today.
But I also realize that it’s not typical. Most schools don’t require their students to take so much Latin — and virtually no schools require their students to take rhetoric! But I’d like to tell you a little more about my school, and what a typical week of mine looked like. Let’s imagine that I’m back in twelfth grade again — in the thick of college applications! Here is what my schedule would look like — let’s take a trip together down memory lane:
Monday: Nothing super exciting here — just the usual suspects. Honors Chemistry, Honors Literature, Honors History, Music Theory (by far my hardest class!), Calculus BC (the second-level high school calculus class), and Latin. After school, I go home and do my homework, after which I might read a book or do some yoga. It’s one of the few days when I don’t have anything going on after school. One of my hobbies is learning languages, so I might work on that. I’ll have to practice singing in the evening, since I have voice lessons tomorrow.
Tuesday: All of the same subjects, but after school, I have voice lessons! Everyone in my family is a musician, so while my brother goes to violin, I go to voice. I’ve been going all of high school and really enjoy it. Recently, I’ve been preparing to audition for my music school’s Honors Recital! I hate the long drive home after voice lessons, but I usually do my homework in the car so that I can read once I get home.
Wednesday: Same subjects, but after school, I have Model UN! I am the co-president of the team. It’s a lot of fun, and right now we are preparing for another conference. I think I might go into international relations in college [author’s note: I did not], so this is a fun way to explore my interests. I had a literature test today: I had to write an in-class essay on Dante’s Inferno! I'm looking forward to getting home and finishing my homework and practicing voice, so that I can watch a movie later.
Thursday: My favorite day of the week — Yoga Club! I co-teach it with one of the Latin teachers at school, who is an actual yoga teacher. This is a fun way to unwind after a stressful week, and I find that it keeps me flexible. Thursday is the most stressful day, in a way: so close to the weekend, and yet so far!
Friday: Hooooooraaaaaaaay! Finally, the school week is over. It’s so nice to be free. I’ll have to write an essay for English over the weekend and study for my math test, but I’m pretty well prepared (and I’ve already even started on my essay). My friend invited me to her house to watch a movie on Sunday, and I’m already looking forward to it. Sweet, sweet freedom!