In the book The Teens are not Alright, Cathy Vatterott shows how the quest for perfectionism among teenagers in America is causing unnecessary teen stress. The crammed schedules in schools and excessive workload have made many teens ignore rest, which is an essential part of their growth and development.
Although every student should strive to achieve a better grade in school, I find Cathy’s argument to be very convincing. I agree with her that sleep is a necessary part of growth for all human beings. Cathy consents that the worrying trend of expecting perfectionism among our teenagers should be brushed off, and instead, schools ought to adopt a sleep slogan. The author’s biggest worry is in the way schools handle teenagers by expecting them to achieve great deeds, yet little time is given for their rest. Lack of rest among teenagers in most American schools has proven to be an issue of concern among significant stakeholders in the American education system.
The book gives recommendations on the various school practices that can be used to create a balance in the lives of the overwhelmed teens in school. To begin with, Cathy asserts that sleep is a fundamental aspect of the lives of teenagers before they transition into adulthood. Though she agrees that the present teenagers in the American school system are so hyped, she concurs that various measures can be undertaken to rectify the situation. According to Cathy, schools should first change their slogans as a way of creating a balance between the academic lives of students and the curricular activities.
To show the seriousness of the problem, Cathy talks about a school that had to bring sleep experts into their daily activities as a way of encouraging teenagers to incorporate rest into their lives. To promote a sleeping culture, Cathy asserts that most schools had to adopt the slogan “Life is lousy when you are drowsy” as a way of encouraging teenagers to get enough sleep. Other schools had to support sleep rhymes to be used in school as a way of promoting a resting culture. To effectively achieve this culture, Cathy recommends the use of sleep ambassadors in schools as a way of teaching a resting culture.
The twist of irony in her text is when she compares how people viewed sleep during her days to the present generation of teenagers. During her time in school, Cathy asserts that teenagers could get too much rest and could also find it hard to wake up during the time for class. However, this is not the case with the present generation, where teenagers do not value sleep. However, the text offers a remedy for this situation by recommending that teenagers should be made to work less and rest more.
In Cathy’s view, present-day teens have been transformed into a status-obsessed generation that is out to conform to the expectations of the society. In Cathy’s perspective, we ought to help the teen in creating a more balanced learning environment for teens. This can be done by taking into consideration the homework loads, school structures, and standardized testing as a way of creating a balanced environment for kids.
Rest is a crucial aspect of the development of most school-going children. The assertions by Vatterott that schools should encourage sleep among teenagers are indeed correct. In this current generation, achievements should not only be based on creating a generation of worked out and burnt youths. Instead, success should be in the form of creating all-round students. Therefore, it is wise for us to develop ways of helping students to access sleep without affecting their future goals.
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