I am now in my eleventh year of my school life. at the end of this year, I will sit for the all important Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM) examination. If I do well, I might get to prolong my education to university and beyond. If I do not perform well in enough, I probably will have to start working or join some vocational or technical classes. Whatever it is, I have to admit that I am at the verge of adulthood and soon I will have to make my own way through life. the question now is has the past year in school been worthwhile? How it has help me prepare for adult life?
Since “education” is too general to consider in all its aspects, I shall consider it only in terms of its role in school.
A school is where people of diverse culture and attitudes converge to. The first thing I learned in primary school was that there are so many different kinds of people. I experienced the pains and pleasures of getting to know my schoolmates. I discovered my own strengths and weaknesses and the social roles each one of us played. I learned the meaning of tolerance, team-work, friendship as well as prejudice, selfishness and enmity. Some experiences are uplifting while some were depressing. However, when taken as a whole these experiences taught me how to handle life without getting into too much trouble. I have to cope with them. By mixing and socialising in school, I learned to fit into society and live according to its norms. Without these school experience I doubt very much whether I can be a successful social animal. I would not know what to do and worst of all I would not have friends to help me in times of need.
Undeniably, school taught me the basic skills of writing, reading and arithmetic without which it would be difficult to live in this modern world. It also taught me many other things like geography, history and science. In geography, I learned that there are many countries with different people living in them, speaking many different languages and doing different things. I also learned that our planet Earth and our place in the solar system. History taught me about the people who lived before, their hopes, their dreams, their successes and their failure. It also had taught me that the human race had been in war with one another since time immemorial, and that we seldom learn our lessons from the misdeeds of the past. Our progress in science taught me the enormous capability of man and how much he can achieve if he sets his mind to a task. All these knowledge remain with me and definitely they will determine how my later life will proceed, for they have moulded my character and attitude.
Sports, games and extra-curricular activities showed me that we can involve ourselves in so many different kinds of activities. I realised that most people are competitive. Very few are not. Aggressive ones normally dominate in sports and games while the quieter ones normally spend their times in less vigorous pursuits like reading and visiting the library. I am fortunate to strike a healthy balance between the two extremes. I am fairly good both in games and studies. However, doing well in one’s studies is of primary importance it is here that the competition is the fiercest. I learned not to underestimate others, especially the skinny little runt who cowers at the back of the classroom. He is the one who is going to knock all of us flat when the final examination results come out.
In the process of growing up in the school environment, I discovered that the teachers are also human. They err and sometimes behave terribly. When I was in primary school, the picture was different. A teacher was something like a superhuman, a know-all and much feared and respected figure. Now I see they are like anyone of us, except they were born earlier and have a little bit more experience. That does not mean I have lost respect for them. It only means that I do not believe everything they said blindly. I have learned to reason and discriminates.
Summing up, I would say that my education had been worthwhile. I may not be the ideal student that would make an educationist happy but I know that I am not a washout either. In my heart I know that the experiences in school were priceless. What I am today is the direct result of my education. The very fact that I can express my views on paper as I am doing now should vouch for the worth of my education