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Keeping an open mind and learning

Keeping an open mind and learning
Kai Tibbitts ’24

In the world we live in today, we are constantly surrounded by the horrors our world is faced with. Devastating ongoing wars, heated elections, catastrophic school shootings; the list goes on and on. The divide between the academic environment and the outside world can sometimes feel disjointed. When in the classroom it can feel scandalous to talk about the current social and political issues in the world, because most want to steer away from loud arguments or uncomfortable silence.
But these experiences allow us to apply meaning behind what we are learning. Here at the Tower, we believe that by listening to other people with different perspectives, we are able to broaden our understanding of the world.

In the State of Michigan, it is mandatory to take a government class before graduation. In a typical government class one of the first units covered is the difference between the legislative, judicial and executive branches at the national level. When studying for the test students use flashcards to memorize how each branch communicates and works with each other. They use cards with “Checks and Balances” on one side and how the executive, legislative, and judicial branches work together on the other.

When flipping through each card, it can be tricky to remember something, but for most memorization is easier when current day situations are applied. This form of learning is lifeless and leads to students forgetting what they learned shortly after taking the test. Instead, we as students should be challenged with activities that make us think. By asking us to do our own research, debate others or come up with alternative solutions, we will be able to connect our learning to the real world and have a much better chance of remembering what we learned.

When talking to others, it is important to be respectful and have an open mind. According to a 2020 statistic taken by Pew Research Center, over half of Americans have stopped talking about political issues with people outside of their immediate family.

This can be seen as very damaging to the growing generation of Americans considering people are less likely to speak to each other about controversial issues. It’s important to go into those conversations with an open mind. Having conversations in class about the current climate crisis or Supreme Court rulings can help students be exposed to other opinions and see the other side of an issue. We should not be afraid to have these conversations, we should be open to them.

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About the Contributor
Kai Tibbitts ’24
Kai Tibbitts ’24, Page Editor
Kai Tibbitts is one of the brightest people in Tower. She's very outgoing and incredibly friendly to talk to, as well as being involved in South's Orchestra and Pointe Players. Her favorite part of Tower is being involved with everybody, but her main passion lies in designing art. "I just really like designing stuff, and I really enjoy being in a class dedicated to design. I'm involved in plays as one of the assistant stage managers, and I also work with art, designing props," said Kai. "I'm a perfectionist when it comes to things I'm passionate about." Kai loves her position on Tower as a page editor, as it allows her to communicate with others to improve her work. Outside of Tower, you can find her in Orchestra, with Pointe Players or hanging out with friends.

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