The grade school and high school experience has definitely changed since the days that we were all stuck in the classroom. As I watch my own children go through the early grades, I am blown away by how much things have changed, and how little I truly understand the motivations for those changes.
We all made it through those years (mostly), and we are none the worse for the wear. I am all for progress, but when we make progress simply for the sake of it, or when that progress affects our children's abilities to grow into fully functioning members of adult society, then we have to question why.
With that being said, here are eight things that we all experienced during our grade school and high school years that have disappeared from the modern school experience.
1. Visiting the computer lab.
Remember when you would visit the school's one computer lab, once a week in order to practice your typing skills? Let's be honest most people sat there to play minesweeper or solitaire, or some other computer based game. If anything, it helped me remember "The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog."
2. Cursive writing.
This was one of the most frustrating parts of going through grade school. If we already knew how to print, what was the point in learning to write in cursive? It turns out that it helped me with more than just written communication, it helped us develop some of our fine motor skills. Plus, we all learned how write out or "eloquent" signatures.
3. The terrible cafeteria food that we all loved.
Even though the cafeteria food at my high school was less than nutritious, it was still freaking delicious, and more importantly, affordable for pretty much everyone. Remember when parents were allowed to choose what their kids ate? My kids will never know the joy of a brutal cafeteria cheeseburger and french fries.
4. "Dangerous" games at recess.
It seems that the definition of a dangerous activity has changed multiple times over the years. I remember playing dodge ball, murder ball, jackpot, "touch" football, and any number of variations of tag. Most of these are now banned from the playground in an effort to make play "safer." Red rover was dangerous to be sure, too many broken arms, but when did the rest of the fun about playing outside suddenly become too dangerous for kids?