No Longer Effortless

by Erin
Written January 15-16, 2009

Throughout much of my academic career, I always seemed to be inherently good at whatever subject I encountered at school. As I approached the beginning of my junior year of high school, I was excited to start my Honors Physics class. I thought I would be some sort of physics star, since I knew that a lot of math was involved in the science of physics, and I was good at math. I thought that physics would be some kind of beautiful balance between math and science, and I was sure that I would love it. I believed that this course would bring me the startling revelation that this was the science that I would eventually teach.

But something was wrong. I did not magically understand everything, and I grew more confused each day. I became frustrated because physics did not come easily to me, and it was not the unexplored passion that I had expected.

Despite the initial setbacks, my struggles with physics taught me the joys and the triumphs that a little bit of effort can bring. As I adjusted (or created) my study strategy, I realized that I could be just as successful in my physics class as I was in all of my other classes. Not only did physics show me how great it can feel to try, it taught me to appreciate a challenge. Because of my experience in Honors Physics, I know what it means to think, really to think. I now understand and firmly believe in the benefits of critical thinking, intellectual challenges, and honest effort. As a result, I became a better student, and I will be a better teacher.

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