I had a realization the other day: when I was in school, there were certain subjects that I was grossly interested in but for the most part, I didn’t like the forced learning aspect of it. I loved to read (and still do) but I hated having to go to class the next day and over-analyze the book for my English class until it was no longer enjoyable. Save for two amazing Anthropology classes, I didn’t like having to memorize a bunch of historical dates or people’s names and then rattle off some 8 page paper about them either. I guess I really just didn’t like being to told to learn.
But now that I’m in my 20s and well out of school, I find that I can’t learn enough. I watch the History Channel…voluntarily. I just got Freakonomics out of the library so I could learn more about (weird) economics. I want to know more about politics so I can make more informed decisions in my candidates and policies. I want to know more about the world, cultures and the people in it. I wouldn’t put it past me to even pick up a textbook these days either. I really feel this insatiable thirst for knowledge that I can’t even really put into words.
I suppose it would have been nice to have this thirst for knowledge in school more often. Perhaps I would have gotten all As instead of a decent amount with some Bs and the occasional C thrown in there. I can’t even fully explain why I’m so anxious to learn now either. I can tell you it’s not to win arguments or to be right when I’m talking to people out in the world. I just feel like the least I can do to be a good global citizen is to know a little something about the globe (and my own country and how we got to where we are).
I may not be the poster child for how great learning in a school environment can be, but I can certainly say that even if you don’t love learning then, you never know how much you’re going to love it later in life when, even though you may not be getting tested on it, I think it matters even more. I’m not sure if my teachers would be proud to hear me say this or angry but I guess I may never know 🙂