Chairs and desks in a classroom

Chairs and desks in a classroom

It is true that you learn a lot of really interesting, and beneficial things in the classroom. But think for a moment: Where would you learn about positivity and optimism when your result comes out, and you failed Math yet again! Who would teach you about finding the courage to speak and act when you see that annoying bully trashing another poor, defenceless boy? Or the strength to deal with betrayal when your friend of many years suddenly becomes someone else, stabbing you in the back.

Of course, there are no subjects to help you learn about these things. You only learn them in your journey through life, and below are some of the lessons no teacher can ever teach you.

1. People and their Culture

To learn about other people is to meet them! You could have read about various tribes and cultures in your lessons on Socials, but to learn how the Fulanis prepare fura, you have to meet with them, and to experience life as a Masai, you simply have to live with them!

2. Patience and Optimism

Like the example given before. There is no subject to teach you how to bounce back from failure, you learn that yourself – after it has happened to you! Even if your parents get you enrolled for extra coaching, you still have to cultivate the patience, determination, and optimism necessary to reach your goal and not give up.

3. Humanity

I know that you learn about contentment, responsibility, and respect in Civics. But you learn more about yourself when you have to put them to practice in real life. You learn sacrifice when you give up your seat to someone elderly even when you are really tired and just want to sit down and chill. And courage when the school bully busts your lip because you stood up for another weak pupil. And responsibility when you parents blame you for something your younger sibling did, because you are older, and should have been watching him/her. And treating people with whom you do not even agree with civility

4. Finding Yourself

No teacher will teach you how to have knowledge of yourself. They may guide you, but you still have to go the rest of the way yourself. Like being able to differentiate one emotion from the other. Answering questions about what you want to do with your life. Establishing values  and principles by which you live.

5. True Love and Trust

No one can teach you these, because they simply cannot be taught. They are usually learned through experience.  If they could be taught, wouldn’t we always make only the best friends who would never leave us, and give our heart-felt trust only to the those persons who will never betray it?

6. That You Cannot Control Everything

Have you ever wondered “I did it exactly like Sheila, but I got a different result!” It may not be because you did it wrong, it could simply be that this time, following that same exact method did not just work. Why? Because no two people nor situations are exactly the same, and it is impossible for any human to have complete control over anything.

7. The Reality of Death
No one, not even adults can ever be ready for this. Books may talk about it, and how to deal with it, but they will NEVER prepare you enough for the pain, misery, and anguish that accompany death – especially that of a loved one. It must be learnt first-hand, and dealt with as it happens.

8. The Beauty of Life

No doubt you feel happy whenever someone close to you gives birth to a new child. Those who have children say it is the most fantastic feeling there can ever be. Really? you ask. You will only know if this is true or not when once grown, you give birth to yours. You see? One more thing that cannot be taught, only experienced!

9.  Accepting Forgiveness After A Big Mistake
How many times have you said to yourself “But that was a very stupid mistake, how can I take it back?” “Can I ever forgive myself?” or “Do I even deserve her/his forgiveness?” And still feel guilty years after the act, whenever it flashes back into your mind.

Yes, we have all had those moments. But sincerely forgiving ourselves, and accepting that of others after they must have given it, takes discipline, strength and lots of self-love, and that’s exactly what you must learn to do.

10. Maintaining a Healthy Balance.
Finding the right balance between when to allow your friend’s rudeness pass, and when to speak up against it; when to work and when to play; when to get things done and when to leave them undone. Your parents can try to draw a schedule for you, but you will have to be the one to follow it because they will not always be there.

You will have to simply figure them out as you make your way through life, and learn from both your experiences and those of others. Those little choices all add up to determine how well you lived your life.

Feel like there’s anything I left out? Why not chip in your thoughts, by leaving them in the Comments section?