What The First Thirteen Years of School Taught Me

It’s Friday again. So naturally, here’s another Flashback Friday writing sample. Again, this wasn’t intentional at all, I was actually starting to plan out a different blog post when the theme reminded me of an assignment I had in my final year of high school. It was a couple months into grade twelve and “senior-itis” was already hitting me hard. I didn’t really take any of my assignments seriously, and this is a testament to that.

In Creative Writing we were assigned to write something that functioned as advice based on what we considered the most important thing we’d learned in school from Kindergarten up until that point, as grade twelve students nearing graduation. My take on this assignment was inspired from my worst school photo, which was in grade six. I did it half as a joke, and half because I was too lazy to actually think and write something meaningful. This is what I handed in:


The rest of grade twelve came and went and I graduated. Throughout the first four years of my high school experience I successfully avoided any major drama, save for being one of the victims of an online bullying incident in grade eleven. But grade twelve made up for the relatively easy-going social side of high school that I had up until that point.

After the dinner/dance (our school’s “prom” at the end of June) I felt like I was an action movie hero casually walking away from an exploding building, complete with helicopters circling and emergency response vehicles racing to the scene.  I was out of there and glad to be. A month into my first summer vacation as a high school graduate, I was sorting my old assignments and found my “Hair Advice”. As someone who genuinely loves writing and knew I didn’t take that class as seriously as I should have, I revisited the prompt. No grading, no teacher, no deadline. Instead of writing a half-assed smart-ass paragraph, I wrote a personal piece reflecting on what I actually learned throughout my experience of going through school. This is what I wrote:


Now, looking back on that I can say, of course, I’ve since learned more and have had some of my views and opinions changed based on more recent experiences. I no longer agree with some of the stuff I said, but I guess that’s what they call growing up. It is pretty special, though, to be able to look back and see what eighteen-year-old me felt after graduating. And… I guess, to know what my feelings were about my grade six school picture.

Thanks so much for reading this post! What was the biggest lesson you learned in high school? What about since graduating?


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