The Student News Site of Hayfield Secondary School

The Harvester News

The Student News Site of Hayfield Secondary School

The Harvester News

The Student News Site of Hayfield Secondary School

The Harvester News

A life shaped by sports
Yahia Omar, Staff Writer • May 21, 2024

“One love,” we say

Photo courtesy of Neia Anne Javier-Dizon

“One love, one family(…)” A phrase I know any student at Hayfield could fill in the blanks on. No studying required, no curriculum, no test- however if called for, we’d all pass. That’s not to say we’re all geniuses or anything. We just all hear the same predictable routine every morning. I, as a staff journalist, try to look for events and topics that would be most beneficial and discernable for the greater student body. After weeks of workshopping ideas for my next paper, I’ve come to realize that we’ve been considerably underestimating how influential these announcements are. And the consequences add up. 

To summarize these informative speeches currently; around eight AM every weekday, students at Hayfield can expect an upbeat, but static-y voice to greet us with monthly heritage facts, success-based affirmations, and motivational quotes. All tied together reminding us of our brilliance, as well as our entitlement to that trait. 

While this is all great life-changing stuff, I feel again, my job as a writer is to report for those who may not have been fortunate enough to choose journalism as their top elective class. Here’s what I (and most likely the students) propose: using the morning announcements as a means for memorization. Specifically, as a passive recall tool. If you’ve read any academic-based article about studying, you’d know that active recall is a universally helpful tool when trying to digest information. The “active” part could mean: teaching someone else the topic you’re trying to remember, thinking back on the topic’s information at some point in your day, or paraphrasing after comprehension. Passive learning is just highlighting paragraphs in textbooks or rewriting notes from a slide, in hopes of the entire course sinking in. I don’t think I have to spell out which technique generally gets a better reputation. However, I don’t think that the latter should be dismissed entirely when considering how to go about getting your next “A” on a test. 

The formulaic script allows for the listener to recite the general phrases and routine of the speech, if not its entirety. Hence the “passive recall” title. We as the audience may not be purposefully retaining to recite, but at the end of the day, we could if it was called for. 

I don’t say this to bash the announcements, in fact, I’m applauding it for its advantages. Imagine how life-changing these speeches would be if they instead spat out necessary annoyances in a curriculum that revolved around memorization rather than a general idea of something you could just logic out. In practice, they’d be things such as Spanish preterite conjugations, the quadratic formula, Avogadro’s number, and so on. Even if every student was only half-listening and scrolling on their phone, eventually after a hundred days of sitting through the same repeated math formula or the Spanish ABCs, they’d be able to recite it too. 

I’m listing a sophomore’s course material exclusively. You may be thinking why not apply this for a harder class? Why not use this tool for another grade? But that’s where you’re wrong. Wrong because this is my idea and I’ve got dibs. But indulge me for a moment longer and pretend I don’t. Say the same idea of these announcements would be applied directed towards the upperclassmen or freshmen, but it still wouldn’t be as advantageous as a sophomore’s information. 

Juniors and seniors’ access to a wider variety of classes makes a pinpointed script for an announcement much more difficult to zero in on. Freshmen are the opposite. Everyone takes the same classes, but there aren’t many units in ninth grade that rely on a dense amount of memorization. TLDR: it’s pointless to cater to freshmen. Sophomores on the other hand, the course load piles fast. Those who’ve gotten by without picking up a flashcard have gotten a rude awakening this quarter. I’m advocating for those fifteen-year-olds who can’t be bothered to study- it’s not too late for them. Ages seventeen and up: your fault, not mine. But don‘t be too upset, these underclassmen-based announcements could still be useful for juniors and seniors to reflect on a time when math was a little bit easier, or for the freshmen to mentally prepare themselves for what lies ahead. Equally as beneficial, equally as important. 

The morning announcements are fine as is. They’re inspirational, and moving, and if you catch me off guard, you might see me shed a tear or two. However, I think that there’s always room to refine and these announcements are no different to me in that sentiment. I wholeheartedly believe that if Hayfield incorporates one or two tenth-grade curriculum facts into these speeches, we wouldn’t just say what we do, we’d do what we say. 

“Hawks, we are one.”


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About the Contributor
Emily Johnson
Emily Johnson, Staff Writer
Hey I’m Emily, I’m currently a sophomore and am excited for this upcoming year of The Harvester News!

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    ClaireFeb 28, 2024 at 3:07 pm

    Great article Emily!!

    • S

      ScarlettApr 5, 2024 at 8:55 am

      I agree!