I’m sick of studying. No, not sick of learning, sick of studying. I’m still somewhat fascinated with the way nature functions and the various elements that have brought us together and the fundamental questions of existence. I have not completely lost my childly inquisitiveness and readiness to embark on a journey of acquiring knowledge. However, I am sick of poring over the same concepts and topics and testing and evaluating myself constantly. So, in short, I have a fear of tests. I feel like they’ll expose my weaknesses in a way I am not ready to handle. Maybe I have ego issues, maybe I am under-confident. I don’t know. There are so many students like me, it’s scary. We all feel like we’re bursting with knowledge, we want to share our ideas with the world, we want to be judged by the choices we make, but instead, we’re judged by exams. No, I don’t want to turn this post into a rant about exams. So, let me talk about an incident that happened recently.

It was a family dinner night. My parents and I were enjoying dessert when the conversation switched from the latest cricket match to health issues, obesity, diabetes, food choices, etc. I elaborated on some interesting facts about diabetes and food choices that I had read online. My parents listened, but the conversation ended with them saying “We’ll trust you after you obtain an MBBS or a medical degree.”

I was dumbfounded. This was coming from the most open-minded people I know! Why does everything boil down to degrees and qualifications?! It’s not their fault, the entire education and grading system is like that. But as I enter senior high school, degrees and entrance exams have this creepy habit of stealthily sneaking into every conversation, whether it is with my parents, with relatives or even with friends.

This is something every student (I hope it’s not just me) encounters at the cusp of entering senior high school. We are constantly, almost ruthlessly, questioned by family members, relatives and friends, of our life goals and aspirations. Some students have so many expectations, it ties them down. Others just don’t know. Further, due to a plethora of choices and opportunities that our hardworking parents have been able to provide, everyone expects us to succeed; succeed in the sense that we go five steps beyond what our parents have achieved, preferably in the same field.

I recently visited two coaching centres; they conduct classes from seventh grade onwards to prepare students for high-level competitive exams such as NTSE (National Talent Search Examination), Olympiads and entrance exams. These coaching centres effectively and completely kill the process of learning, self-discovery of the subject and appreciating the beauty of such knowledge. They are successful in providing guidelines, tips and practice materials to succeed with top ranks in exams.

I don’t intend to deviate, but there was a very interesting story I read. A young kindergartener’s course book said “Father takes his bag to the office.” However, this little boy had seen his father put his laptop in his bag and take it to the office. In the class test, there was a fill-in-the-blank that said “Father takes his __________to the office.” The little boy wrote “laptop.” The teacher awarded marks for the question but gently reprimanded the boy for using a term totally out of context. Similar events occurred several times in the course of the boy’s elementary education. By the time the boy reached seventh grade, his creativity had been effectively murdered in the process of standardisation and the “need” for marks. Now, when the boy entered an engineering college, he was asked to develop skills of innovation and present an original idea for a project. After effectively having his childly creativity and innovation skills murdered, the higher education system demanded him to demonstrate those skills. See the disparity?

It’s sad to see how exploratory skills and creativity get murdered. Even I feel like I have somewhat lost those traits, being so engrossed in the textbooks and materials I already have. Maybe you are feeling like you’ve read too many rants like these before, but I felt the urgency to articulate this issue in my own words and put it out there. Sorry if it was boring, but it’s true.

I still like to learn, but not with the same enthusiasm as before.

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8 thoughts on “Sick of Studying, Ready to Learn

    1. Thank you. I completely agree about the fact that there is a plethora of knowledge available to us these days. The only challenging aspect is making sense of it and precisely summarising it to suit our needs.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. It took me awhile to read this,but sweet it is not a bit of boring,but you said so bodly the hypocrisy if our education system.Some line you wrote I felt an echo of my thoughts.Parents do have wishes for us,but I know if you do something from the core of your heart,if you choose to read a subject your thoughts reflect with,your parents will definitely understand you.For they truly love you just the way you are.Don’t feel heartbroken at our education system,I know you posses knowledge and courage to change this.Take the first step at changing things,study wholeheartedly and teach with your ideals.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much! I know that many students feel this way, but I think I’m outgrowing this feeling now. Tenth grade is over and I’m ready to enter eleventh. I’ve realised that nothing in the education system will change and all this pressure might all just be for the best. The years that follow are going to involve extensive hard work and i better stop complaining or it’ll just be a waste of time. πŸ™‚

      But thanks for your encouragement and beautiful words!

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  2. Maanini I so agree with you. U r judged by Exam results. Also one more problem, Every time when a kid is asked, what do u want to become when u grow up? A kid some times wants to be a doctor, sometimes an engineer and some times an actor. Our elders laugh at our innocense and fluctuating thoughts. But what happens when we grow? What if a grown-up has multiple dreams? Why can’t one achieve them all? Why do we have to choose only one – Science or Commerce? Sports or Extra Curricular activites? Coffee or Ice cream. Well i love cold coffee topped with ice cream. I want to have both.
    Well I call myself and people like me MULTI – POTENTIALITES 😎

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ha ha, that was very well put! I totally agree about being “multi-potentialities”, but the rule of the global education system is that you have to settle into one profession. The only difference is that in India, you are asked to make the decision of your life at 15-16 years of age, when you enter eleventh grade whereas in Western countries, you are allowed to experiment with various courses until your graduation. But sooner or later, we all must give in to one particular skill that we hone for the rest of our lives.

      And about all those adults who keep trying to dictate our lives? Ignore them, except your parents. You are accountable only to yourself and your parents!

      Cold-coffee topped with ice cream? That sounds very nice, but it’s too heavy a dessert for a single night, right? πŸ˜‰

      I love Amodinee, by the way, please continue writing!

      Like

      1. Hey thanks Maanini for loving my blog Amodinee. I am living my multi – potentialite life already. In some14 years of my professional life, I have understood one thing, I am responsible for my life and I don’t want to regret for not trying anything that I always wanted to do. I am a blogger now, Fond of craft but left it in school because “never got time”. Somehow I manage to get my creativity in gift wrapping. I am best at it. There are so many things left, I am sure I will take them one by one.
        Wish every one follows their heart so they don’t have to die with an unfinished dream in their eye. If any one of you wishes to do something constructive, which is like way of box, I believe its you who is stopping you. Trust your instincts and go all out. Money is important,Results are important, but not everything that gives you happiness. Do what u like.😊

        Liked by 1 person

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