Balancing act: MS gets involved

In the Middle

It’s no secret that all KO students live hectic schedules full of sports and studies. What about students who are passionate about outside of school activities? It takes talent to manage another activity during the week, but a majority of the students at the Middle School do so—and some to the extreme.

A survey showed that about 88 percent of KO Middle School students are involved in after-school activities that aren’t KO related. In addition, it showed that students are putting anywhere from two to 24 hours into these activities a week.

To some students, these sports and activities are necessary to clear their heads and have allowed them to find their niche. Eighth-grader Sattah Phouthakoun does after school karate. “When I’ve had a tough day, I just need something to de-stress, have fun, and cool down,” she said.

Although students are devoted to the activities they participate in, sometimes the amount of schoolwork they receive makes them question if it’s feasible. “I only have about a day per weekend to do my homework because of religious commitments,” eighth-grader Jolie Flash, a committed Seventh Day Adventist, said. “That’s a lot less than the other students in my grade and it’s hard to balance with everything.”

Extra involvement makes completing homework and being a successful KO student more difficult. So, how do students do it? Several extremely involved students find themselves giving up more than just homework time to cope. Eighth-grader Kyra Dunnirvine participates in after school softball and soccer. “It is difficult to fulfill all of my responsibilities, and how I manage is I have no social life, because I mean something has to go,” she said.

Despite time-management challenges, many students choose to continue their activities. “I think that the values that I learn from diving help me in school,” eighth-grader Eli Brandt said, who dives outside of school. “Like, when I come across a challenge, even though sometimes I can’t overcome it, I try my hardest and try to push forward- it [diving] sort of translates to other parts.”

Participating in after-school activity enhances character. It also instills values in students that they can apply to their future endeavors at KO and in life. These students are devoted enough to choose to be involved with extra activities, and deserve to be rewarded with the occasional deadline extension. Although, it seems that if one is as passionate as these students, staying up an extra hour to finish homework isn’t that significant.