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The Maroon News

Student News Site for the Argo News Network

The Maroon News

Student News Site for the Argo News Network

The Maroon News

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Academic Validation


Can symbols put on a piece of paper dictate how you feel about yourself or how your days go? Does this, “→” symbol make you feel sad? Does this, “-“ make you feel like you aren’t good enough? Does “}” make you want to do better? 

No. These symbols don’t mean anything, so why would they change your mindset? 

Well then, why do teenagers feel this way with grades? They are just letters pasted down on a paper, like the ones you are reading now. Do these letters you’re reading make you feel scared? Exhausted? Sad? Angry? No. That’s because they don’t matter like grades do. But did you know, overworking yourself and stressing over grades causes more harm than good? you know, overworking yourself and stressing over grades causes more harm than good? Putting yourself in a situation of stressing obsessively over academics hurts your body in ways you might not even know of. 

Many teenagers stress out about grades. According to, “61% of teenagers between the ages of 13 and 17 feel stress over producing satisfactory grades.” I mean, it kinda decides what classes we do and how smart we are, right? The first part is right, the second isn’t. In my opinion, grades dictate your ability to do work, apply what you’re learning, and how well you can manage your time. Can these show your overall intelligence? Not really. Intelligence does include academics, but grades and school aren’t the only things included in it. 

Now I’m not saying school doesn’t matter and we should just get rid of it, not at all. I’m just saying grades shouldn’t be how we compare ourselves on the smartness scale. 

Intelligence can include street smarts, common sense, how you can carry out certain takes, etc. For example, as says, intelligence is the ability to learn from new experiences and gain resilience toward those experiences. It’s not just about what you can learn and how well you did in your freshmen chemistry class (a personal experience, chemistry is hard ok!). 

For this reason, teenagers shouldn’t stress about grades as much as some of us do, me included. Grades can cause chronic stress, or stress that continues from our day-to-day life. And, as according to Seppa, the author of “Chronic Stress Wreaks Havoc on the Body,” chronic stress can inflict lasting health issues. It can raise your chances of having a heart attack, stroke, or even asthma. Would you want your body to stop functioning just because you kept crying over your AP Calculus grade? That would do the opposite of what you want to happen.

If you stress out about your grades obsessively and you start to hurt your own health, your grades will drop regardless. Why? Because you wouldn’t be producing your best work on a damaged system. Basketball players can’t make three pointers when they don’t eat and exercise right. And you can’t get A’s on your exams when you don’t sleep, exhaust your body, and use energy that you don’t need to be using.

So, the solution to all of this? Stop stressing out so much!

Yes, you need to be concerned about your grades and what you are doing in school, but you don’t need to be obsessive. The one B or C you get on that math test isn’t going to absolutely break your grade. What should you do instead of crying about it and complaining? Try your hardest to improve your behavior and succeed in not only your grades, but your well-being as well.

My tip is identifying the negative and why the outcome happened. Did you not study enough? Did you not get enough sleep? After you identify the problem, come up with the solution. Study more beforehand, stop stressing out and sleep earlier, etc. Use the steps “IdentifyàFixàpractice.” Identify the problem, find out how to fix it, and practice the solution to fix it.

Wait! Those arrows are back. You didn’t feel any fear or perplexity, just as we discussed last time. Symbols are something we see every day and words are something we read every day. So, you shouldn’t worry so much about letters printed down on paper at the end of every semester. They are just letters a first grader could draw, they aren’t anything special. Just because you got one B in English doesn’t mean it should be your sleep paralysis demon.

Worry about your grades and academics to a healthy amount. And I can relate to all you high achievers, so I know it’s difficult, but try your best. You will succeed in life if you try your hardest; I’m proud of you and everyone else around you is too, don’t forget that!



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About the Contributor
Susann Dunlap
Susann Dunlap, Staff Writer
Susann is a sophomore here at Argo. This is her first year in The Maroon. She likes to bake sweets for her family and paint ceramics in her free time. Other than The Maroon, Susann is in a couple of other clubs such as enviromental club and Mathletes. She is excited to be more involved this year and scared of her AP Chemistry homework.

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