Carlos Gutierrez, an outstanding student at CSA
Carlos Gutierrez is a 10th grader at CSA. He takes his studies seriously and always aims to get the best grade possible in his classes. Surprisingly, Carlos says he doesn't study that much for quizzes or tests; at least, he doesn’t see it as “studying”. Maybe we can learn a thing or two from this outstanding student.
Carlos says that to prepare for a math test, he just does some problems for practice and, to prepare for a history exam, he just reads the chapters. He spends around 4 hours doing homework and studying for tests every day. This is a reasonable amount of time, but he’s also taking 2 AP classes. He confesses that he sometimes gets stressed but it depends on the subject; if there was something he didn't understand, he gets frustrated.
To destress he plays outside in his backyard or listens to music.
I asked what he thinks of other tests, like the PSATs. He said it is a very important practice test for 9th and 10th graders. Some students practice for these tests using Khan Academy because it has a lot of exercises, but Carlos doesn't study for this. He says that he confidently enters the test with the knowledge he already has.
Carlos is an excellent student, but nobody’s perfect. I wanted to know if he left room for mistakes, so I asked him what was an acceptable grade for him and he said 80 or above. I also asked him how he feels when he gets a grade below 80 and he said that he feels sad but then he just accepts it and keeps ongoing. He doesn’t dwell on it, but learns from his mistakes and tries again.
Carlos participated in a math competition several years ago, representing our school.
Image was taken by his mom
As any other student, Carlos is already thinking about his future. He told me that he wants to study finance and economics at Stanford. This university is ranked as #6 in the U.S., in case you didn’t know. I also asked him a question that is very difficult for a lot of people: how do you see yourself in 10 years? He told me that he sees himself out of college or finishing college and getting a job.
All students are different and have different ideas of what they want for their future, but these high school years are very important because they can determine your future. Carlos knows that, and he is determined to make the best out of the time he has left.