ColorfulMusic gets teased for being the "baby" of her high school, since she skipped a grade and is only 13. If we were a year younger than our peers, we'd take a gap year and travel the world. Think about it, Music! —Sparkitors
I attend a magnet school for the exceptionally gifted called The Academy of Liberal Arts. The program was only started this year, which means we’re a group of overachieving pioneers! Our school operates on the block schedule system, and our year is divided into two semesters. We only have four classes a day, and we spend a long time (an hour and thirty minutes) in each class. Our teachers are completely eccentric, but that’s why we love them. Here's what my day is like:
5 a.m.: I wake up, throw my clothes on, brush my hair and teeth, and realize that my alarm clock won't be going off until 6:30 a.m. This happens every…single…day. Why do I have a stupid alarm clock in the first place? Good question. I usually just watch the news and eat a Pop-Tart while I wait to leave.
7:20 a.m.: I grab my book bag, flash drive, flute case, and art case and run in a frantic frenzy down my too-long driveway to catch the bus. The driver is nice, though, and waits for me.
8:15-8:30 a.m.: The bus drops off the middle school kids, then us. I head to the library and talk to my friends until the get-to-class-before-a-teacher-finds-you-mingling bell rings. The hallways are full of screaming teenagers and general havoc, so I usually just wait out the worst of the traffic until it clears.
1st period: Art. This is my only class that isn’t in the advanced ranks. You have to take basic art before you can take any of the other art classes, and I couldn’t change my schedule during the first semester. So now I’m stuck in a class of imbeciles who really don’t care about art (or school in general), terrorize the teacher, and struggle with painting a simple color wheel. Luckily, I’m allowed to work on advanced projects in this class.
2nd period: Math. We cover the whole Math 1 curriculum and half of Math 2 in this class. This is my favorite class because of my teacher. I love her so much! She’s a former marine, cryptologist, mechanical engineer, and government spy. Why she decided to teach high school math is beyond me.
She’s the type of person that would toss you in shark-infested waters and tell you to swim or die. This pretty much means that we have to teach ourselves in this class. It’s not that she doesn’t want to teach us, it’s just that she believes we learn better this way. But of course she’s always there to help. We’re supposed to be “exceptionally gifted,”but only a few of us aren't failing this class. What can I say? Some people just don’t know how to work.
3rd period: Band! I’m sure you’ve heard about the band geek stereotype. Well…whatever you’ve heard is probably true. We band geeks revel in our band geeky…ness. Our director is a stoic, super-tall dude who speaks in monotone, but he’s one of the best teachers I’ve ever had. He plays the trumpet like a beast, too. I’m one of two freshmen in Symphonic band. I play seven other instruments fluently (yes, this is what I spend my extra time on), but flute is my principal instrument. When we’re not practicing for a performance, we usually just sit around and practice individually. And by that I mean we turn the band room into a riotous party. We play what we want, and we play it loud. It’s not much different during marching band season.
Lunch: This means having to walk all the way from the band room across the globe to the cafeteria. Instead, I usually just stay in the chorus room and mooch food off of my friends. Eating in the chorus room has its benefits: We are always entertained with the antics of the ridiculous tuba section.
4th period: Literature. I really don’t know what all goes on during this class, and spend it in a haze. By time 4th rolls around, I am completely exhausted and only want to go to sleep. I don’t, though. I’m too scared of what the teacher would tape to my back if I did. One time, he put a taxidermied, snarling coyote in front of one of his sleeping students. Poor kid probably messed his pants when he woke up. Everyone thinks our teacher positively insane, but he seems like the typical Literature teacher to me. We’re given a stack of novels at the beginning of the semester and deadlines to read them by. They are followed by lengthy tests and in-depth essay questions. Fun, fun, fun. No, really. It is!
3:30 p.m.: The bell rings to dismiss us. I wait by the door of the Biology room for my friends to pack up so we can fight our way through more hallway traffic and leave for the bus.
4 p.m. I arrive home, toss my things down, and take a nap. After that, I make a pot of coffee and work on my mountain of homework. I actually don’t mind doing it, though I sometimes get too interested in whatever we’re learning and go off to research it more. When the homework’s finally done, I usually practice a few of my instruments until my family goes to bed. They get kind of angry hearing a piccolo shrilling away at midnight. So when I can’t do that any longer, I just read until I finally pass out.
In conclusion: My day is extremely packed what with school, friends and their drama, homework, and afterschool activities. If you're wondering why I didn't write about science or social studies, it's because our schedule alternatives, meaning that we swap out two academic classes a semester. In addition to the more thorough courses involved with the Academy, we are required to complete thirty hours of community service a year…So far I have none...whoops!
Does anyone else have a liberal arts school for gifted students in their area? We think ColorfulMusic's pretty lucky!
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