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By Scott Kellerer
Q: How did you get through the tough times at school?
A: There were times I just wanted to get up and walk out of the classroom because I was having a hard time understanding what was going on in the class. I got through the tough times at school by playing basketball at lunch and letting all the aggression out so that I wouldn't have any built up inside.
Q: What were you really good at doing, and did you get a chance to show it off at school?
A: I was good at sports, especially in high school. Sports came naturally to me. I played basketball all four years. Once it was time for the game to start, my mind was focused on only one thing - to get out there and give everything I had. I left all the struggles I had in school that day and went out and played. I was known for throughout the league for my ability to play basketball. My sophomore and junior years I played on the guys' volleyball team, too. These were the times I felt the best about myself.
Q: How did you handle homework?
A: Homework was a very difficult thing for me to deal with. I often missed what the teacher gave out for homework because I was distracted by something else. Whenever I did get the homework assignment, I had a hard time wanting to do it because I knew it would take me awhile to finish. I hated spending so much time on my homework when it took the other kids half the amount of time it took me. But I figured I could do a little at a time. I did an hour of work, then took a break and watched a half hour of TV or played a half hour of video games. Then I would go back to work for another hour if I had more homework to do. I noticed that seemed to do the job.
Q: What have you learned about the way you learn?
A: I've learned I need to be interacting and doing hands-on types of things to learn.
Q: Are there strategies you use as an adult?
A: I've learned over the years that I can't position myself in a place where I'm going to be easily distracted. I have to place myself where I will be able to pay attention.
Q: Do you have some suggestions for kids still in school to make their struggles a little easier?
A: I would suggest keeping a positive outlook. I know a lot of times kids think they can't do something when they really can. Don't be hesitant to ask questions. Like they say, there is no such thing as a "stupid question." Most teachers won't ask you if you need help; you have to ask them. But teachers are there to help you.
Q: What do you wish you'd known earlier that you'd like to pass on to other kids now?
A: Something I wish I had known sooner is that teachers are truly there to help you. They aren't just there to teach a class. Not asking for help and trying to figure it out on your own will only frustrate you. I used to get so frustrated at my school work because I couldn't figure it out on my own. If there's one thing I'd tell other kids, it's to ask for help when you need it. There is nothing to be ashamed about.
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