Summer is long past as the second quarter of school begins. The screeching sound and painful reality of pre-dawn alarms rings through the ears of students every morning prior to school. Most students, especially those with morning sports practice, sway into school looking like “walking zombies.” This can have a negative effect on academic performance and build habits that will stay with students through college and beyond.
Sleep is food for the brain. Without it, students face depression, poor academic performance, suicidal thoughts and a greater chance of getting in a car accident. This can have detrimental effects on everyday life, making each school day feel bland and routine. Relationships with family members, friends and teachers may dwindle, adding to the stress that is already piling up as the year goes on. Getting out of bed in the morning will feel like a chore and life as a whole will seem unenjoyable.
So, what good does it do to try to educate kids who are so tired? A teacher could be giving the most interesting lecture to sleep-deprived kids, and the overwhelming desire to snooze off replaces any chance of them actually paying attention. Activity period and occasional unstructured time provide small windows throughout the week for students to nap, but most choose to fill this time doing homework they procrastinated the night before. The question prevails: Who’s at fault, teachers or students?
It really comes down to the responsibility and maturity of each student to know when they need more sleep and when they need to change their unhealthy habits. It seems the only remedy for the sleep deprivation plague is to work diligently during the time you usually procrastinate and focus exclusively on school during week days. Make use of the weekends to kick back and relax and organize your thoughts before Monday morning. Flik has made coffee readily available every morning for all students before school in the Dining Commons. Take advantage of this, as it can keep you more alert and ready to learn before refueling your mind at lunch.
So, with Daylight Savings Time now over, let’s make a pledge to walk into school alive and energetic ready to achieve success.