Day in the life

Nine active teens show ways to balance school, social lives


Photot by Ariel Van Patten

With 66 different clubs on campus, teens such as Kathryn Poe gain time management skills in high school. Poe, a senior, participates in band as well as serving as a campus standleader. “It’s really hard to spilt time between band and standleading, but it’s worth it because I love them both,” said Poe.


From the time her alarm clock goes off in the morning to the time the 2:30 bell rings, sophomore Natalie Ekrot marches on through the school day in anticipation for one of her favorite activities: band.

“A typical day is to get up early, go to school, go to 1st period, push through the day until lunch, have fun at lunch, finish off the school day, and, depending on the season, either go to marching band or go home,” said Ekrot. “Band is my life. I practice my flute and piccolo for a minimum of an hour a day, but it usually turns into about two or three hours. It takes away 75% of my free time, especially during marching band season. I still love it though, and it’s what I’m dedicated to the most. This is my seventh year of playing the flute and my second year of marching band, and I plan to do both during the rest of high school and college.”

On the opposite side of the school, junior Blake Le Clair quietly takes in the work he has to do for the day and goes home.

“I wake up every morning very tired and go about my day. Coming home and having to do an hour of homework isn’t much; I manage my time wisely so that I can have a good balance of social and academic life,” said Le Clair. “A couple days a week, I have basketball practice, but my studies don’t affect my activities just yet. They will once basketball season starts. This means that my schedule will most likely change as well, but being an athlete, I adjust fairly quickly.”
Band and basketball are some of the activities in which students participate. Across campus, students are involved in various clubs and activities such as orchestra, art, foreign languages, HOSA, astronomy club, culinary clubs, and ROTC.
“I’ve been a part of ROTC since 6th grade,” said freshman Chastity Juarez. “I like it because it’s challenging, and I met a lot of people that eventually became my friends. I can’t stay after school since I ride the bus, and the only thing that really changes my schedule is when I wear the uniform on Wednesday.”

Students that are not involved with extra-curricular activities may be more focused on academics.

“Being disciplined and getting homework done is a challenge since there can be a lot to do in a night,” said sophomore Whitney Wells. “I make sure not to overload too much. I may stay up too late to study for my classes, or I may have not studied as much as I wanted, but it still works out. The multiple focuses I have is definitely a challenge as well. I try to balance everything out. A couple of my classes got off with a rough start, but communicating with my teachers helped a lot. I always have time with my family at the end of the day, no matter how busy my schedule is.”

Academic study takes time away each day because of the homework or studying. Yet the extra-curriculums mentioned above also consume time dedicated to academics, making it difficult to maintain an academic balance and a good night’s sleep.

“Band is very time consuming and strains my studying time. Practices start at 3:30 p.m., and I get home at 6 p.m. It’s hard to get the right amount of time to finish my studies,” said senior Kathryn Poe. “It’s harder to get homework done with that much practice. Also, Young Life happens every Monday and Wednesday, and NCL (National Charity League) takes some time away from my week. It’s time consuming, and it takes a lot of practice to get the routine right. ”

For those that desire to create balance between their activities, academics, home life, and social life, different methods are implemented to accomplish this task.

“I often have had soccer and band conflicts arise, so I have to figure out how to manage them,” said junior Kasey Davenport. “It all works out in the end. Sometimes, I have had soccer games to play in and football games to march in on the same day. I would go to my soccer game first and then change into my band uniform in the car. I barely make it to the halftime show.”

Students such as freshman Erika Vaughn blend sports and academics together.

“I play lacrosse, and I swim in and out of school. Practices usually take place after school or on the weekends. Whether I join clubs or not depends on their enjoyment,” said freshman Erika Vaughn. “There are some late nights since I’m busy and still have homework to do. I have a few classes that have homework, but it doesn’t take time away from my other life aspects.”

With 24 hours in a day, teens push to balance academics, social, home, and extracurricular life.

“Academics affect the amount of sleep I get at night. After getting home from football, I do my homework, eat, and sleep. There’s not enough time to watch TV or do other stuff like that during the week,” said junior Phillipe Orion. “I have to pass all of my classes. If I don’t, I’m not allowed to play, but this only applies to my report cards. Progress reports can make you eligible but not ineligible. If you fail report cards but pass on the following progress reports, they can bring you back. I’m doing good in all of my classes right now. I have all A’s.”

“My day is described as anything but typical,” said senior Jared Simpkins. “I’m becoming well known by many people for my stand-leader shirt and socks. We have seven hours of school, and I go home to do more work. Tuesdays are for standleading and ROTC, and I try to do half and half. I stay up later and do homework, so I get less hours of sleep. It’s like having a job! But I love all of my classes, the friends I have, and standleading.”