Magazine, website & books written by teens since 1989

What I've Learned

Custom User Avatar
More by this author
“What did you learn in school today?”

I remember Mom asking me that question every day after school in first grade.

“What did you learn in school today?”

I would sit at the kitchen table and write down everything the teacher had taught us that day.

After first grade ended she didn’t ask as often, so I didn’t tell her. But Mom, now that I’m in tenth grade I’m learning lots.

“What did you learn in school today?”

Today I learned that betrayal takes time to really sink in. I learned that you can feel part of something while being excluded by everyone, and that hurts the most. But Mom, in tenth grade I’m not taught by the teacher.

“What did you learn in school today?”

Today I was taught that my place in line is behind the line, that I have no place in the circle. I was taught that promises are easily broken, and hope is the most fragile thing in the world.

I learned lots today, Mom. But it wasn’t anything I wanted to learn.

“What did you learn in school today?”

“Nothing, Mom. Nothing.”



Join the Discussion

This article has 6 comments. Post your own now!

Dackary This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Oct. 4, 2010 at 10:20 pm
I really like this piece. I love the struggle between the individual and their mother. Each paragraph the struggle becomes more vivible. Maybe expand on connecting the concept of exclusion to that of how the mother excludes the subject. What is it that she specificacally does that is taking her focus away from asking about her childs day at school? Is she growing weak and too tired to speak? Does she have a person who she loves and she cant spend time with the child or ask them how they are doin... (more »)
 
MayaElyashiv This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Oct. 4, 2010 at 11:49 pm
It's interesting that you feel like the Mother's character is lacking...because when I wrote the piece, I thought of her as a prop, an inanimate object that I used in order to show the feelings of the main character. I just thought that because the child was older she was no longer as worried about what happened at school...but maybe you are right, I should go a little deeper into her character. Thank you!
 
AsIAm This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Sept. 23, 2010 at 8:52 am
I already critiqued this in the forums, but I just wanted to say I really like it!
 
MayaElyashiv This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Sept. 23, 2010 at 9:54 am
Thank you :)
 
mudpuppy said...
Sept. 20, 2010 at 6:03 pm
Being exclued by everyone. Boy, do I know how that feels. Even through this is fiction, it stills has a realstic flavor to it. :)
 
MayaElyashiv This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Sept. 21, 2010 at 11:38 pm
Thank you so much...!
 
Site Feedback