MENU

Reason.com

Free Minds & Free Markets

Teens Are Triggered By In-Class Presentations and Would Like Them Abolished

"I think if a student is really unsettled and anxious because of it you should probably make it something less stressful."

If Gen Z got its way, in-class presentations would be joining napkins, doorbells, J. Crew, and Buffalo Wild Wings on the list of things the youths have killed. They say standing up in front of the whole class and reciting some speech, or walking through a powerpoint, can be a traumatic experience for many students and that teachers should do away with them.

This was the thinking behind a tweet that went viral last week:

The Atlantic's Taylor Lorenz dug into the issue, interviewing students who claim that speaking in front of the class gives them anxiety. Some used the language of trauma, triggers, and mental health, which suggests that the kinds of psychological harms college students complain about are afflicting younger students as well:

Nobody should be forced to do something that makes them uncomfortable," says Ula, a 14-year-old in eighth grade, who, like all students quoted asked to be referred to only by her first name. "Even though speaking in front of class is supposed to build your confidence and its part of your school work, I think if a student is really unsettled and anxious because of it you should probably make it something less stressful. School isn't something a student should fear."

"It feels like presentations are often more graded on delivery when some people can't help not being able to deliver it well, even if the content is the best presentation ever," says Bennett, a 15-year-old in Massachusetts who strongly agrees with the idea that teachers should offer alternative options for students. "Teachers grade on public speaking which people who have anxiety can't be great at."

"I get that teachers are trying to get students out of their comfort zone, but it's not good for teachers to force them to do that," says Henry, a 15-year-old also in Massachusetts.

Speaking in front of the class is indeed terrifying for a lot of young people (it was for me). But the argument that teachers should make kids do this anyway is fairly straightforward: We don't overcome our fears by running from them. Sometimes, immersion therapy is the correct course of action. Practice giving presentations in front of large crowds, and you eventually get better at it, and less afraid of doing it. Learning to be a better speaker will actually prove quite useful for almost every student (unlike, say, learning higher level math). People in a wide variety of jobs need to give presentations that involve speaking in front of groups.

That said, I'm all for choice in education. Increased implementation of voucher systems—which allow families to pick the school that makes the most sense for their child, regardless of zip code—would provide more options for teens with abnormal levels of anxiety and allow them to opt for a school with a more relaxed, non-traditional learning environment. And if teachers want to experiment with alternative learning arrangements, they should feel welcome to do so. There's no need to follow a one-size-fits-all education policy.

It's true that young people today are a lot more stressed out than previous generations. Much more is demanded of today's K-12 students, and the competition for spots at elite colleges is more brutal than ever. Students have massive homework loads that keep them up late, and still they must get ready for school as early (or earlier) than most adults. They are often involved in a punishing number of extracurricular activities, since good grades are not enough to make a college application shine.

There are good reasons to address many of these sources of stress. The Centers for Disease Control, for example, has warned that 93 percent of high schools begin classes too early, against the advice of the American Academy of Pediatrics. But abolishing in-class presentations seems like the wrong place to start, since they impart an actually useful skill.

Photo Credit: Andreaobzerova / Dreamstime

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  • Don't look at me.||

    Good. Maybe then they won't have the stones to join a protest march or a pointless rally.
    Pussies.

  • Cynical Asshole||

    They will if they get extra credit and it gets them out of class.

  • Quixote||

    We took care of Pussy Riot and we can take care of these high school pupils too. But let's not forget about the teachers of our great nation, many of whom also need protection from inappropriate triggering. Even right here at NYU, which is one of the America's premier high schools, many of us have faced the most outrageous accusations of misconduct, sometimes from anonymous Trolls using "parody." When that happens, we also know exactly what to do. See the documentation of New York's leading criminal "satire" case at:

    https://raphaelgolbtrial.wordpress.com/

  • Zeb||

    Nah. It's easy when you are doing the same thing as everyone else.

  • JMJR||

    Yes but there is another perspective beyond the fear of speaking issue and this also happens at universities.

    When teachers force students to spend weeks giving presentations they do not have to teach! Some college courses now have continuous presentations throughout a semester and the students end up teaching each other instead of learning from the instructor they hired. They are also forced to lead discussion groups which is another instructor job.
    I challenged this in college and was told that they were giving us needed skills and that appears to be the new talking point. I would argue that most people do not spend most of their work life presenting research although it does happen in certain jobs.
    Whether in high school or college the main focus should be to learn the subject matter from the instructor who is the expert. In a class of 30 and an hour long class it could literally take weeks to give presentations and many more to do the independent research. Where is the time devoted to learning the course's subject matter from the expert?

  • BlondeJustice||

    Very good point!

  • Linux||

    I argue that not making students perform tasks that they are uncomfortable with or find stressful will actually lead them to be more susceptible to stress in the long term since they won't learn how to cope with it. It's like arguing that someone shouldn't exercise because they're out of shape.

  • ||

    It's like arguing that someone shouldn't exercise because they're out of shape.

    I want my kid to go to public school to learn good social skills but not too many social skills or master the hardest of them.

  • Zeb||

    Pretty much. Almost everyone gets anxious about public speaking. Particularly when they are not practiced at it. That's why schools try to teach it.

  • Marcus Aurelius||

    At that age the ones who are not nervous are usually horrible at it.

    If it's that much of a problem, start a junior toastmasters club.

    Maybe if they are nervous about presenting, it will make them less dickish to other kids who are presenting. #welcometothunderdome

  • ||

    The proper libertarian answer is to abolish compulsion-based schooling. Can't you recognize that the harm done by the lesson in submission to a teacher's authority outweighs the good done by the lesson in facing down a fear of public speaking? How can it possibly be good for the future of liberty if every new generation is implicitly taught that it's hopeless to wish to be free, even in such a deeply personal process as learning? Marshall McLuhan had wise words for just this type of situation: The medium is the message.

    If this kid is a whiny snowflake, then so was Rosa Parks, I dare say. "Stop whining!" sometimes only means "Stop inconveniencing me with your protest!"

  • ||

    The proper libertarian answer is to abolish compulsion-based schooling. Can't you recognize that the harm done by the lesson in submission to a teacher's authority outweighs the good done by the lesson in facing down a fear of public speaking? How can it possibly be good for the future of liberty if every new generation is implicitly taught that it's hopeless to wish to be free, even in such a deeply personal process as learning? Marshall McLuhan had wise words for just this type of situation: The medium is the message.

    If this kid is a whiny snowflake, then so was Rosa Parks, I dare say. "Stop whining!" sometimes only means "Stop inconveniencing me with your protest!"

  • Enjoy Every Sandwich||

    Then the next complaint will be "nobody is listening to us!"

  • ||

    The proper libertarian answer is to abolish compulsion-based schooling. Can't you recognize that the harm done by the lesson in submission to a teacher's authority outweighs the good done by the lesson in facing down a fear of public speaking? How can it possibly be good for the future of liberty if every new generation is implicitly taught that it's hopeless to wish to be free, even in such a deeply personal process as learning? Marshall McLuhan had wise words for just this type of situation: The medium is the message.

    If this kid is a whiny snowflake, then so was Rosa Parks, I dare say. "Stop whining!" sometimes only means "Stop inconveniencing me with your protest!"

  • UnrepentantCurmudgeon||

    Heard you the first time

  • Red Tony||

    Schools start early for the convenience of the teachers and administrators. You honestly think that this is going to change just because "it would make students healthier" and "they would learn more"? Who do you think school is supposed to benefit, anyway?

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    Schools start early for the convenience of the teachers and administrators

    School districts are already starting to experiment with delaying start times for high schools. It never had anything to do with "convenience," early start times was just the way things had been done for decades.

    Now that research is showing that high schoolers tend to be night owls (especially if they're working after school) and need later starting times to function better, districts are beginning to change to accommodate those findings. It will take a while for it to be a nationwide change, though.

  • Cynical Asshole||

    Now that research is showing that high schoolers tend to be night owls

    They had to do research to figure out that teenagers like to stay out late?

  • ||

    Now that research is showing that high schoolers tend to be night owls (especially if they're working after school)
    and need later starting times to function better, districts are beginning to change to accommodate those findings. It will take a while for it to be a nationwide change, though.

    This is dumb slight-of-hand. If I have 8 hours of school, 4 hours of work, 8 hours of sleep, and 4 hours of recreational time, moving the start of any one of them sooner or later doesn't increase or decrease the amount of any one of those. Kids who work after school will just have to work later hours into the night to make the same pay, sleep later into the morning after their shift and go to school later in the day even after the start time has been moved back.

    90+% of HS start before 8:30 because after 8:30 Mom and Dad have usually left for work. It may be less true now that shifts don't start at 9:00 for as many people as they used to mom and dad can more frequently work from home, but the idea that moving school start time from 8:30 to 9:30 is going to fix anything folly much the same way daylight savings time fixed... anything.

  • Mickey Rat||

    They have started early in order to stagger the load for the bus system. School systems don't have enough buses to do high school and elementary kids at the same time nor do the want to put younger kids on the same buses as older kids.

  • Marshmallow Pepys||

    Correct.

  • Chasman1965||

    Just my observation, a bus with K-12 is much safer for the little ones than a bus K-8. 11th and 12th graders don't let the middle schoolers pick on the little ones.

  • Marshmallow Pepys||

    "Schools start early for the convenience of the teachers and administrators"

    If you genuinely think that then you probably don't know many teachers and administrators.

    The main reason now is transportation, while originally it was related to farm work.

  • Social Justice is neither||

    I've always assumed they started early for the convenience of the sports system connected to the school. Start the day at 9am and you're not starting practice until 5pm or so.

  • IceTrey||

    I thought it was so the parents could see the kids off before they had to leave for work.

  • Eddy||

    "I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain."

  • ||

    Members of the royal houses were educated individually and at home. I suggest:

    "It is by will alone that I set my mind in motion. It is by the juice of Sapho that the thoughts acquire speed. The lips acquire stains. The stains become a warning. It is by will alone that I set my mind in motion."

  • Eddy||

    "ewwwww!"

    /Teenage girl

  • ||

    The proper libertarian answer is to abolish compulsion-based schooling. Can't you recognize that the harm done by the lesson in submission to a teacher's authority outweighs the good done by the lesson in facing down a fear of public speaking? How can it possibly be good for the future of liberty if every new generation is implicitly taught that it's hopeless to wish to be free, even in such a deeply personal process as learning? Marshall McLuhan had wise words for just this type of situation: The medium is the message.

    If this kid is a whiny snowflake, then so was Rosa Parks, I dare say. "Stop whining!" sometimes only means "Stop inconveniencing me with your protest!"

  • Dillinger||

    fuck you, you babies already destroyed communication you don't get out of it altogether ... twice as many presentations for complaining and an extra one for the time it took to draw the sign guy

  • ||

    The proper libertarian answer is to abolish compulsion-based schooling. Can't you recognize that the harm done by the lesson in submission to a teacher's authority outweighs the good done by the lesson in facing down a fear of public speaking? How can it possibly be good for the future of liberty if every new generation is implicitly taught that it's hopeless to wish to be free, even in such a deeply personal process as learning? Marshall McLuhan had wise words for just this type of situation: The medium is the message.

    If this kid is a whiny snowflake, then so was Rosa Parks, I dare say. "Stop whining!" sometimes only means "Stop inconveniencing me with your protest!"

  • creech||

    Hey, if I had to get up every morning at 6am, walk five miles uphill to school, and stumble through a recitation of Shakespeare's "Richard the III" every day, then so can today's snowflakes. And Get Off My Lawn.

  • GlenchristLaw||

    Uphill both ways...

  • ||

    The proper libertarian answer is to abolish compulsion-based schooling. Can't you recognize that the harm done by the lesson in submission to a teacher's authority outweighs the good done by the lesson in facing down a fear of public speaking? How can it possibly be good for the future of liberty if every new generation is implicitly taught that it's hopeless to wish to be free, even in such a deeply personal process as learning? Marshall McLuhan had wise words for just this type of situation: The medium is the message.

    If this kid is a whiny snowflake, then so was Rosa Parks, I dare say. "Stop whining!" sometimes only means "Stop inconveniencing me with your protest!"

  • BlondeJustice||

    LOl! Great comment!

  • MiloMinderbinder||

    It's true that young people today are a lot more stressed out than previous generations.

    Fact check: False!

    Are they really more stressed out than kids having their siblings die from routine infections, surviving the Great Depression, going of to kill Nazis and Japs, getting drafted and sent to Vietnam?

  • ||

    "Widespread caffeine use explains a lot about the 20th Century." -Greg Egan

  • Enjoy Every Sandwich||

    The big difference I see is that the alleged grownups are yielding to the whining.

  • Cynical Asshole||

    ^This^

    Used to if you didn't want to give a presentation and whined about the teacher would just tell you "Fine, you don't have to give your presentation. But you'll get a zero on the assignment. The choice is yours."

  • Michael S. Langston||

    Are they really more stressed out than kids having their siblings die from routine infections, surviving the Great Depression, going of to kill Nazis and Japs, getting drafted and sent to Vietnam?

    Maybe, maybe not, but it's absolutely possible.

    Let me try to explain... but start with this: a major issue here is how does one comparing overall stress levels between generations and there no easy answer that will ever satisfy everyone who may evaluate it.

    Having said that, while war sucks, humans are evolutionarily designed to handle it, just as we're designed by evolution to be hunters, get over things quickly by denying our roles, and group think to name just a few.

    What we're not really designed for is high stress, high produtivy, high levels of sensory input, all going on every second we're awake. And I think it's beyond obvious that high-school for most today is much tougher and more stringent than it as 30 years ago, and much more so if you go back 50-75 years ago.

    Still not saying I agree they're necessarily correct in their assessment as I haven't evaluated it myself, but it's definitely possible and I'd lean towards it being more likely than not.

  • ||

    Having said that, while war sucks, humans are evolutionarily designed to handle it, just as we're designed by evolution to be hunters, get over things quickly by denying our roles, and group think to name just a few.

    The fuck? The point of war is that we are *not* designed to handle it. We are not designed to be hunters. If we did we'd be able to run faster, and have claws. We wouldn't have to develop pointy sticks and weapons. We aren't designed to be prey, but to say we're designed to be hunters ignores all the hunters out there that are naturally way better at it than us.

    And if you're suggesting that our behavior is evolutionarily pre-programmed, you're shitting in your own pool. At best, your argument is 'there are more people in school today than 50-75 yrs. ago, ergo, more absolute or total cumulative levels of stress as the result of schooling'.

  • Zeb||

    While we don't have the teeth and claws and explosive speed of other predators, we do have some pretty useful features for hunting. The ability to run very long distances is particularly useful for hunting and it's something humans are considerably better at than most other animals. And when did we start using tools for hunting? It must be long enough that evolution has had something to do with our abilities in that area as well.

  • perlchpr||

    it's something humans are considerably better at than most other animals

    I'm under the impression that there's nothing on the planet a human in reasonably good condition can't run down over time. (Sea animals not included, obviously.)

    Heck, it's not even running. If you can keep up a solid 6 mph jogging pace, for a couple hours, out on the plains, you can just jog after antelope, and eventually, they just lay down and wait for death.

  • Michael S. Langston||

    I'll try to clarify: evolutionarily speaking we're built for long periods of nothingness followed by short periods of high intensity.

    This is a semi-accurate definition of action sequences necessary for both hunting and war

    Separately, soldiers today and centuries ago discuss things like "the purity of war" and many have strong desire to go back to war (this part complicates PTSD too, as they want to get over it, but never forget).

    The idea being again, sure war sucks, but there's a purity in only worrying about life/death and nothing more. Additionally they enjoy having near absolute support from your comrades in arms, who are closer than family.

  • Hank Ferrous||

    So, no

  • Marcus Aurelius||

    Did those generations have to face posting online and not getting any likes??!

  • ||

    The proper libertarian answer is to abolish compulsion-based schooling. Can't you recognize that the harm done by the lesson in submission to a teacher's authority outweighs the good done by the lesson in facing down a fear of public speaking? How can it possibly be good for the future of liberty if every new generation is implicitly taught that it's hopeless to wish to be free, even in such a deeply personal process as learning? Marshall McLuhan had wise words for just this type of situation: The medium is the message.

    If this kid is a whiny snowflake, then so was Rosa Parks, I dare say. "Stop whining!" sometimes only means "Stop inconveniencing me with your protest!"

  • Sarah Palin's Buttplug||

    At least these little fucks won't become politicians.

    (As long as they can't speak in public).

    Or they could lie 24/7 like the Con Man does. Therefore content is not important.

  • Sevo||

    "Or they could lie 24/7 like the Con Man does."
    #Stillwithher

  • ||

    The proper libertarian answer is to abolish compulsion-based schooling. Can't you recognize that the harm done by the lesson in submission to a teacher's authority outweighs the good done by the lesson in facing down a fear of public speaking? How can it possibly be good for the future of liberty if every new generation is implicitly taught that it's hopeless to wish to be free, even in such a deeply personal process as learning? Marshall McLuhan had wise words for just this type of situation: The medium is the message.

    If this kid is a whiny snowflake, then so was Rosa Parks, I dare say. "Stop whining!" sometimes only means "Stop inconveniencing me with your protest!"

  • JCarruthers||

    Well, there's the dumbest thing I've read today. Along with typing, public speaking was about the only useful thing learned in school.

    Also as I recall, whether or not they were cripplingly shy EVERYONE was terrible at presentations, primarily because they were stupid children awkwardly reading from a script. I was shy but I had a sense of humour and just got up and talked knowing the points I had to hit, and was instantly just on a different level from everyone else.

  • Dillinger||

    >>>People in a wide variety of jobs need to give presentations

    people don't talk to each other in public anymore. start there.

  • Ben of Houston||

    Which is why basic presentation skills are even more important now than ever before.

  • Dillinger||

    exactly. start w/eye contact. they need instruction on molecular levels because iphone.

  • Sevo||

    "Nobody should be forced to do something that makes them uncomfortable," says Ula, a 14-year-old in eighth grade,..."

    There's a reason you can't vote until you reach a certain age.

  • Eddy||

    The Democrats are working on that.

  • Cynical Asshole||

    And that age is probably too young as it is.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    The world needs PowerPoint presentations on ditch-digging, too.

  • ducksalad||

    Well, I wouldn't say "force" abstainers in the sense of raising the stakes to point where they can't graduate or are subject to some kind of disciplinary action.

    But saying that choices have consequences, like losing some points and not getting an "A" or valedictorian status is fine. After all, in high school grades of A and valedictorian status are essentially certifications that say you have a proven ability to do a job someone tells you to do instead of following your own preference.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    ""Nobody should be forced to do something that makes them uncomfortable," says Ula, a 14-year-old in eighth grade, ""'

    Poor Ula, gonna have a tough time with life.

    Of course we can file this under things 8th graders say and why we don't listen to them.

  • Eddy||

    Or things they'll later wish they hadn't said, at least in public.

  • Cynical Asshole||

    I suspect there's a reason why none of them wanted to give their full names. Maybe that indicates at least a modicum of self awareness?

  • BlondeJustice||

    LOL. So true!

  • chipper me timbers||

    "Nobody should be forced to do something that makes them uncomfortable"

    Is this a young libertarian in the making?

  • Eddy||

    Signs point to "no."

  • ||

    Signs point to "yes"! The proper libertarian answer is to abolish compulsion-based schooling. Can't you recognize that the harm done by the lesson in submission to a teacher's authority outweighs the good done by the lesson in facing down a fear of public speaking? How can it possibly be good for the future of liberty if every new generation is implicitly taught that it's hopeless to wish to be free, even in such a deeply personal process as learning? Marshall McLuhan had wise words for just this type of situation: The medium is the message.

    If this kid is a whiny snowflake, then so was Rosa Parks, I dare say. "Stop whining!" sometimes only means "Stop inconveniencing me with your protest!"

  • BYODB||


    They say standing up in front of the whole class and reciting some speech, or walking through a powerpoint, can be a traumatic experience for many students and that teachers should do away with them.


    LOL, well these kids are in for a big shock once they get out of government schools. Just wait until you're expected to pay rent if you think basic public speaking is the end of the world.

  • damikesc||

    ...perhaps adults should stop humoring these toddlers?

  • EscherEnigma||

    If Gen Z got its way, in-class presentations would be joining napkins, doorbells, J. Crew, and Buffalo Wild Wings on the list of things the youths have killed.


    Hey! Millenials worked hard to kill those industries, don't go giving Gen Z credit!

  • Marcus Aurelius||

    Robbie hasn't checked BW3 stock in a while...

  • lafe.long||

    Some used the language of trauma, triggers, and mental health, which suggests that the kinds of psychological harms college students complain about are afflicting younger students as well

    What the fuck?!?!

    First off, you forgot the quotes around "psychological harms".

    Secondly, that middle schoolers used these words only suggests that they are as idiotic as college students.

  • Michael S. Langston||

    I would hazzard a guess that most 14 year olds using politically defined mental health terms they have either very politically active parents who discuss this crap or in a school with a lot of politically active teachers pushing it.

    Not that it's impossible, but highly unlikely a 14 year old knows and understands mental health vocabulary through individual research.

  • ||

    You left out a very big caveat. Plenty of them could understand the mental health vocabulary through individual research. They understand it through individual research the same way a quadriplegic understands climbing El Capitan; Google. They've never knowingly met anyone with PTSD, but know that it refers to stress experienced after a trauma.

  • Michael S. Langston||

    Yeah - I did contemplate some could get these useless words from social media, but assuming most teenagers are like the ones I know, they use those channels to talk, irritate, etc, etc, with each other. They're not surfing news articles.

    But agree with you, even if they got these terms from some research they still don't fully understand what they mean and their consequence or even whether those terms are acceptable or not by most mental health professionals (example, based upon tv shows, movies, etc, it would seem that MPD (now termed DID: disassociative identity disorder) is beyond real even though the vast majority of professionals disagree - same thing with second hand smoke causing cancer).

    Like all superficial learning, they're not any smarter, but can appear that way to people easily manipulated by the appearance of intellect.

  • Cynical Asshole||

    I wonder sometimes if "the kids these days" really are such fragile snowflakes, or have they just figured that if they claim to be "traumatized" or "triggered" or whatever then they'll be able to get out having to do things they're just too lazy to do, like give presentations in class.

    Part of me hopes it's the latter, although that doesn't exactly bode well either since they're still missing out on learning useful skills, but at least that would mean they're not actually snowflakes. Instead it would indicate that they're actually smarter than their idiot teachers and school administrators they're playing for the fools they are.

  • mpercy||

    I'm also cynical as hell, and am waiting for the wave of surplus-hormone young men who realize that they can go into the girls locker room merely by proclaiming themselves to be "identifying as a woman". Of course, they may also be "gender fluid" so that this identification can be fleetingly transient.

    Why not simply have unisex bathrooms and locker rooms? Surely nothing bad will ever happen if we put football players and cheerleaders in the same locker room?

  • Les||

    Forcing a kid to do a presentation when their terrified is no less stupid and no less authoritarian than school itself.

    School forces kids to dance to nonsense for 12 years for the privilege of a certificate that allows them to work a minimum wage job. It has always been a terrible place for kids and still is.

    Why support an authoritarian institution as it forces kids to do things with zero evidence to support the idea that forcing humans to learn makes them learn better, and lots of evidence that it results in the hatred of learning and childhoods filled with misery?

  • ||

    ^This! Yes! Thank you! Finally, someone agrees with me. The proper libertarian answer is to abolish compulsion-based schooling. Can't you recognize that the harm done by the lesson in submission to a teacher's authority outweighs the good done by the lesson in facing down a fear of public speaking? How can it possibly be good for the future of liberty if every new generation is implicitly taught that it's hopeless to wish to be free, even in such a deeply personal process as learning? Marshall McLuhan had wise words for just this type of situation: The medium is the message.

    If this kid is a whiny snowflake, then so was Rosa Parks, I dare say. "Stop whining!" sometimes only means "Stop inconveniencing me with your protest!"

  • ||

    "I get that teachers are trying to get students out of their comfort zone, but it's not good for teachers to force them to do that," says Henry, a 15-year-old also in Massachusetts.

    Its amazing to me that a 15 year old speaks like this. At 15, in school in the early 80's my friends and I were giggling uncontrollably whenever the teacher would use words like "ball" "screw" "mellon" in a sentence. We were dumb and immature and maybe that was for the best. Maybe not. Im not making generational judgments. Im simply astonished by the differences

  • ||

    Im simply astonished by the differences

    I think it was first grade:
    Me: Spell the word 'log'.
    Son: log. l. o. g. log.
    Me: Use the word 'log' in a sentence.
    Son: I log into my iPad at school.

  • perlchpr||

    Oof. Wow. Not wrong, but... wow.

    Times they change.

  • Michael S. Langston||

    Future 25 year old unemployed Henry:


    I understand businesses have rules, but I just couldn't deal with how they were always trying to force me to show up in appropriate dress and they always had the temerity to tell me what my priorities are. I just couldn't handle it man.

    Honestly since I told them all off (after being fired) I've never been happier. Sure it's just pizza delivery and Uber calls, but I'm my own boss and no one tells me what you do.

    And on the plus side I use driving around a lot to help me with my part-time business of selling street side pharmaceuticals.

    So yeah, I got that going for me.
  • Radioactive||

    you want stress! I suggest we make them do it naked! That'll teach 'em some stress, the little shits!

  • speedylee||

    Last year my kindergartener had to give short presentations throughout the year. I thought introducing it that early waa fantastic for his development.

  • ||

    Last year my kindergartener had to give short presentations throughout the year.

    You mean like show and tell?

  • lafe.long||

    You mean like show and tell?

    Perfect.

    "Teens Are Triggered By Show and Tell and Would Like it Abolished"

    I don't understand why they can't just pretend like they're posting on tumblr.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    I hate when my job forces me to be in team building exercises. But I go along with it and don't let it stress me out.

    Because I'm an adult.

  • Tony||

    This I can get behind. The world isn't built for introverts.

    Even more in need of abolishing are group projects. The kid who is smartest and cares the most does all the work and the others take credit. Fuck that shit.

  • perlchpr||

    The kid who is smartest and cares the most does all the work and the others take credit. Fuck that shit.

    There are people who say that you're the least self-aware entity in the universe. And then you say shit like this and prove it.

  • GeoffB1972||

    "The kid who is smartest and cares the most does all the work and the others take credit."

    Replace "others" with "most engaging extrovert" and you'll be prepared for the most irritating part of adulthood.

  • GlenchristLaw||

    I don't see how you can play this card and not follow with making gym class optional.

  • Real American||

    the #1 reason people are afraid public speaking is because they aren't fucking prepared for it. This kids are just fucking lazy and using their bullshit sensitivities as an excuse to avoid work believing that their hyper-vigilant helicopter parents and spineless school bureaucrats will take their side.

    Maybe just force the parents to do it for them. How long until they realize it's not so bad?

  • Michael S. Langston||

    Agreed - like sports and most of life, successful public speaking is 90% preparation, 10% execution.

    So long as your speech doesn't upset too many of the far left, then you have to use fraction of your time on defending yourself and your audience from those deeply triggered when forced to question strongly held dogmatic beliefs.

  • zombietimeshare||

    Nobody should be forced to do something that makes them uncomfortable," says Ula, a 14-year-old in eighth grade, adding, "Like presentations, fer sure, and tests, like they should be eliminated, and homework, like that interferes with free time and hanging out with friends. Oh, and math, like who needs that? 90% of my friends don't like math, and the other 20% don't like it either. It's like, oppressive, and stuff."

  • perlchpr||

    Fuck off, spammer.

  • Jerry B.||

    Sort'a got your perspective the first 30 or so times. Got anything else to say?

  • Jerry B.||

    Sort of got your perspective the first 30 or so times.

  • Karl B.||

    Honestly, teachers could make the experience a lot more pleasant. First of all, presenting to a small group of peers (3-4) should be happening all the time. As it stands, students are strictly forbidden from talking to peers 99.9% of the time, then suddenly one day per semester have to talk in front of the entire class. Second, being able to practice ungraded a few times before adding the pressure of evaluation.

  • Deconstructed Potato||

    What if it just went viral because lazy teenagers want to get out of doing awkward presentations and vaguely like the sentiment, as well as the novelty of the little ascii art pic?

  • AD-RtR/OS!||

    Perhaps the Little Dears need to stay in their warrens, because if they can't stand up and talk in front of their friends, how will they ever deal with people they don't know.

  • vek||

    Rather than getting rid of presentations, they should just bring back physical punishment. Perhaps that would toughen these pussies up!

  • Chasman1965||

    Of course giving presentations in front of class is stressful and anxiety ridden for some of us. That said, it's an important skill to acquire, and the best way to make it less stressful is to do it. If you do one class presentation a year, it's more stressful than one per month.

  • Zarquon||

    The first link ("list of things") is broken Unless it's reserved only for Reason staffers for some reason.

GET REASON MAGAZINE

Get Reason's print or digital edition before it’s posted online