Teenage boys say they're not as worried about social media as high school girls. But they share the same pressures of fitting in and time management. This morning WBFO's senior reporter Eileen Buckley brings you part two of our Cafeteria Chats series with students from Lake Shore Central High School in Angola.
Four male students gathered around our microphones in their school cafeteria to discuss school life. Senior Jon Sonntag has been focused on preparing for college telling us that's been his biggest challenge. But he still juggles his social life in between.
“You definitely can’t filter out the social side in a high school because it’s mostly social with all these people. But there is a certain point where you have to keep separate your work and your friends because trying to mix those two doesn’t exactly work sometimes,” Sonntag explained.
What about social media?
“Social media—I personally try to stay away from as much drama on social media as I can, but sometimes there’s no avoiding it. It’s definitely a real challenge for a lot of high school students, I think,” Sonntag replied.
“What other student behavior do you witness?” asked Buckley.
“It’s kind of hard to witness a lot of student behavior because there aren’t really cliques any more. You used to see shows on TV and you’d think ‘there’s the jocks, there’s the nerds.’” Not so much anymore. Everyone has kind of intermingled into one school community, so it’s not as much—not as cliquey as it used to be,” described Sonntag.
“There’s still got to be that one student out there who feels like an outcast,” Buckley questioned.
“That’s the thing. I used to feel that way, personally, and I know a lot of kids that used to feel that way. But you see, the thing is, when you’re an outcast, there’s definitely other kids that are outcasts, and then you just band together and make your own friends,” Sonntag remarked.
“Behaviors – it’s hard to explain behaviors, because everyone acts so different in high school. There’s people that act really mature then people who act completely childish,” answered Lake Shore Junior Ryan Franco.
Franco is trying to find balance between keeping his grades up and thinking about what he wants to do in the future.
“What about this balance about what you are trying to accomplish academically and prepare for your future and then have a social life and dealing with your on-line lives?” Buckley asked.
“Well having a social life sort of, like, intermingles with it. Because, high school you need to have friends, ‘cause they like help you get by, and then finding that balance is all about keeping your grades up and not trying to like give up on school and keep trying,” explained Franco.
“What about the drama on social media?” Buckley questioned.
“Not really affects me, I don’t really get into drama. It just-there’s no point to it,” Franco remarked.
“You’re gonna find out either way in school. You’re gonna hear stories in school. Some of them aren’t true and that’s the problem with social media,” said Matthew Timm, also a junior at Lake Shore High School. He's very busy because he plays in three sports.
“I think my biggest challenge is time management. I’m a three-sport athlete. I have a job, you know, trying to keep my grades up. I have an older sister who did very well in school so I have a high expectation from her. So it’s very difficult to balance everything that you have to do in one day, planning it out and just trying to get everything done,” Timm responded.
But Timm finds a way to balance his school and sports life.
“I think it’s just all about learning how to do it yourself, because once you get outta high school, it’s all on you. You know, you’re off in college, your parents aren’t gonna be there to wake you up in the morning, they’re not gonna be there to tell you to eat, you gotta go to work, you gotta go to class, you gotta get this done. Everything is independent. So we’re getting to that age where it’s, really it’s up to you to learn how to manage your time and what you need to do,” Timm said.
While juniors and seniors are thinking ahead to college, it's a little different for freshman. Zack Evans is winding down his first year in high school he says it was most challenging getting use to teachers and classes while balancing sports and academics.
“During different seasons it’s more like, busy than others. And grades, um, they’ve been pretty steady, just balancing the two has kind of been a challenge,” Evans said.
But Evans said he makes it work with some support from friends and family.
“I basically go to my friends if I need anything, and my parents help a lot. And teachers, too. But with sports I kind of just focus on one thing at a time. If I don’t have a game or anything, I focus on school mostly, but when it comes to practices and stuff like that, I stick to one thing only,” Evans explained.
“What about the social side of it now that you are in high school?” Buckley questioned.
“In high school people are a lot more mature than in middle school. The social media aspect of it, people aren’t as cruel or mean on social media and you just kinda-you just gotta be nice to people. You’re all in the same place, you’re all in the same school, you’re just gonna have to get used to it,” answered Evans.
Evans advice for future freshman – “relax” and you'll get through it.