Not understanding a concept frustrates me. Failing maddens me. Not getting the passing grade drives me crazy.
Growing up, I was not a gifted child. I earned D’s through elementary and middle school, tried reading in class instead of paying attention as much as possible, and received plenty of detentions. I was written up countless times for trying to sneakily read books instead of paying attention during math class. If you grew up as a delinquent book-lover/math-hater like me, you probably know the childhood trick of keeping your math textbook open on your desk while a novel sits in your lap. I was busted every time.
Then, in high school, I started earning straight A’s. Let me tell you, it did not come easily. I cried, wept, and moaned my way through 4 years of going to bed at 10 PM and waking up at 5:30 AM every weekday. It hurt. I was exhausted. But I was also freaking proud of myself. Having my essays used as examples during class (according to my sister, my World History teacher used my essay as an example when she took the class 2 years later), being called one of the “smart kids” by peers, and being held up as a golden scholar-athlete by my coaches was sweeter than honey.
However, crawling up from D’s to A’s was not a miraculous, overnight practice. The key to not sucking at school anymore was this: I had to learn how I learned things. And the way that I learn happens to include tears. Oceans and oceans of tears. Here is how the system works:
- Look over something, try it
- Fail. Wrong. ***Buzzer noise***
- Get it wrong again
- Cry. Get angry. Get upset. Emotional upheaval.
- Try again
- Get it right
Oftentimes, the “Get it right” part doesn’t come until after a dozen ***buzzer noise*** attempts. But if I keep going at it and trying different angles and learning methods, the answer eventually comes to me.
But first, I have to try and cry.
This post is kind of a reminder to me, as I have begun my crazy 3-classes-in-8-weeks course load. My Intro to Prob & Stats course really scares me, but I know I can get it. I just need to go stock up on some Kleenex.
How do you learn best?
What was your worst class in school?
Here’s to More Trying and Crying!