5 Things I’ve Learned from Teenagers


Teenager PicI am in my fifth year as a high school English and Journalism teacher. A lot of the time when I tell people what I do, they say, “Wow, how can you deal with teenagers all day?” And to be honest, some days they are easier than dealing with my three-year-old and eight-month-old.

The best part of my job is seeing these teenagers grow and learn. Plus, all of the things they have taught me.

1. Snapchat

I know, I know. Another social media. But honestly, this is so much fun. I love taking quick snaps of my kids, life, and sometimes how cold it is outside. Forget what you’ve heard, it’s a fun app where I also follow other media outlets such as People magazine and HGTV.

2. Slang/Lingo

Do you know what the dab is? Or what on fleek means? Yeah, I didn’t either. But when you spend eight hours a day with teenagers, you start to pick up on their lingo. Sure, there are things I didn’t really want to know (Netflix and chill), but it keeps me in the loop of what the kids are talking about.

3. Keeping Me Young

I enjoy my students, their personalities, and their diversity. Having conversations with these spirited teenagers allows me to feel young — especially when I have them guess my age and they guess that I’m in my 20s. Ha!

4. They Are Not Disrespectful Hooligans

I think teenagers can get a bad rap. Of course there are kids who can be disrespectful, but in my classroom I see students being polite and engaged in their learning; they are genuinely good kids. These kids are working after school, participating in activities, and spending time with families. There is a lot of pressure on these kids, but they do a great job of handling it all.

5. Our Future Is Bright

I’ll tell you one thing. Being around these kids lets me know that our world is in a good place with them as our future. They are motivated, encouraged, and ready for their futures. I am proud to be around these teenagers every day and am privileged to be their teacher.

What have you learned from the teenagers in your life?


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