Which Nine Weeks Make You Freak?


Graphic by Lexi Marcellino

Alexis Pinchuk, Op/Ed Editor

Each school year, Dreyfoos students find themselves in one of four difficult quarters. As each one passes, they begin to blend together into one challenging school year. This begs the question of which quarter really is the hardest to complete. It seems to be an unfair question; day to day, the work and tests seems to become more difficult and an even bigger part of students every day schedules. Homework seems to drown individuals and studying becomes a constant all night cramming session. With all of this school madness, how can each quarter get harder than the one before?

Some students argue that first quarter is the most difficult of them all. After a long summer break full of free time and plenty of sleep, getting back to their coffee driven multitasking routines may seem impossible. Attempting to get used to early mornings and late nights can become a slap in the face. However, the new year brings excitement and potential that is undeniable. Finding footing in the madness of the school year can be hectic, but electrifying as well.

While this is understandable, students also argue that second quarter is even more challenging than first quarter. Right before winter break, students have to find the patience and time to settle into their desks and study for their semester exams. This stress surely builds on students, not to mention the distractions that come with the holiday season. With so much riding on one exam, and not enough time to shop for holiday presents and study for classes, students battle second quarter’s demanding schedule. But because of the holidays, a sudden warmness is in the chilly air as students work towards their winter break. Through the foggy days of school, a holiday cheer encourages students to get through their dreadful exams.

Third quarter, however, is notoriously known for being the most ruthless quarter of them all. After two weeks of winter filled festivities and holiday parties, coming back to school is a hard wake up call. From ringing in the New Year to racing to class before the bell rings, students cannot get out of the past year’s breaks that are now behind them. The lack of days off makes this quarter especially hard. Full uninterrupted school weeks seem to carry on forever. This quarter is also known for being much longer than the standard nine week period. Even though the school week seems on a continuous loop, students can still find fun in a very rambunctious and pride-filled Spirit Week. While this is a major highlight of the school year, third quarter is definitely a student favorite for the “hardest quarter of the year.”

While first, second and third quarter all present their own challenges, I still venture to say that fourth quarter is the most challenging quarter out of the year. With the third quarter just ending, I feel drained and in desperate need of summer vacation. Over the river and through the woods are scary state tests and deathly AP exams, not to mention the annual final exams along with juries and other tests. Each breath I take seems to be accompanied by me bubbling in another letter to a standardized test. It seems that teachers assign more homework during this quarter just to watch students perform a circus act that entails juggling back-breaking textbooks and walking the tightrope of number two pencils. Summer is the perfect ending to this quarter and is the main source of motivation that students have to complete this demanding quarter. Being drained from the constant studying and overwhelming stress further proves fourth quarters more difficult standards in comparison to the rest of the year.

No matter which quarter students dread the most, they all amount into one full school year filled with memories of long nights and intense study sessions. Each quarter pushes students to what they feel will forever be their breaking point. By the end of the year, summer is a much needed and very well deserved break.