High school is complicated. Junior high is awkward. College is overwhelming. But elementary school? It was, by far, the best (when it comes to school, anyway). Elementary school is young, carefree, and void of any real responsibilities. Instead of heavy $200 textbooks and hours of homework, it came with juice boxes, recess, and colored pencils. While you might have hated elementary school when you were in it, looking back, you realize you had it pretty good. It can feel weird to miss something that happened so long ago or when you were so young, but let’s be real – there are some things we all miss about elementary school that we probably won’t be getting back any time soon.
Of course, hindsight is 20-20. By the time you’re in college, you’ll start to look back on high school and wax poetic about how easy it was compared to your coursework in the present. Once you’re out in “the real world,” you’ll long for the days of final exams (so easy compared to meeting presentations!) and all-nighters. If only we could combine the best parts of each phase of our lives into one. Until then, we can reminisce on the good times. Here are a few things we all miss about elementary school that, honestly, we should make more a part of our every day lives no matter how old we are. We could use a little bit of this throwback love!
Having RecessSpending time outside on the playground to break up class time was the best. Playing games with your friends, hosting massive rounds of Red Revor... even indoor recess was better than sitting at a desk. This is something we should all try incorporating into our day-to-day lives as much as possible. If you can't leave school, then try getting outside for 45 minutes after the day is over. If you're in a place where you can take an hour of your day to relax outside or play a game, do it! It's good for your mental health, keeps you productive, and makes you happy. Image source: iStock
Show And TellHonestly, the best part of show and tell wasn't seeing everyone else's stuff, it was getting a legitimate reason to brag about your own. Okay, so your high school or college class or your job is never going to offer Show and Tell, but take the concept with you wherever you go! It's easy to be negative about everything in our own lives while feeling jealous of others, but allow yourself to brag about your accomplishments a little bit sometimes. Image source: iStock
Story TimeYour teacher could transport your whole class to a whole new world by reading; no complicated literary discussions needed. Unless you buy books on tape, you'll never have people reading to you again like this, but you can bring story time into your adult life on your own. Give yourself 30 minutes to an hour every day where you read a book just for pleasure - if you hate reading, at least read a magazine or even your favorite blog. Image source: iStock
Harmless CrushesLiking someone in elementary school was harmless and fun. You'd tease each other. Maybe you'd hold hands at recess. There was no pressure to do anything at all. And "breaking up" was a non-issue. But as you get older, crushes get more and more complicated. Take a lesson from your younger self, and stop taking your crushes so seriously. It will make you happier and might even help your love life. Image source: iStock
Decorating Your Classrooms For HolidaysRemember when classrooms were decorated for every holiday? It was fun and exciting and got you amped for the celebrations to come. Bring this into your older life by decorating your bedroom or your space yourself. You don't need to go overboard, but doing a little decorating is fun. Put spooky Halloween decorations on your dorm room door, hang Christmas lights around your bed for some ambiance, or put a fake pumpkin in your locker. The possibilities are endless, and it makes celebrating the holidays more fun. Image source: iStock
Getting and Using StickersIn elementary school, everyone got stickers along with their homework grades, and honestly, it made the process so much more fun. You probably won't find a teacher, professor, or boss who uses stickers for you, but that doesn't mean you can't use them yourself. Buy fun stickers to decorate your planner or your class notes. Or, get the adult version of stickers - patches - and iron them onto your clothes and accessories for a stylish look. Image source: iStock
Art ClassElementary school isn't just about learning math and science - you also got to go to art class, which was so much fun. If you can choose your own courses in high school or college, get a creative class in there at least one semester. Most colleges offer all different kinds of art classes, from sketching to painting to sculpture, and a lot of high schools offer a variety too. Take an art class for a creative boost, even if you don't think you're artistic. It feels good, it's fun, and it's a nice break in the day. And if you're not in school? Get yourself an adult coloring book and go all out. Image source: iStock
Field TripsEven better than being in elementary school was taking a trip away from it. Museums, zoos, local attractions - you got to see it all with your best friends on a day when you'd usually be stuck in the classroom taking a quiz. Again, this is something you don't have control over school-wise, but that doesn't mean you can't do your own thing. Step outside of your box every once in a while and plan a little adventure for yourself and your friends or bae. It's fun to do different things than just hanging out watching Netflix once a month! Image source: iStock
Your Parents Packing Your LunchYou didn't have to worry about fending for yourself or deciding between mystery meat or congealed casserole in the cafeteria line. Your parents took care of your lunch and might have even treated you to a Lunchable every once in awhile. Those were the days! If you're lucky, your mom will still give you lunch through high school, but once college is there, you're kind of on your own. Instead of always buying lunch from the cafeteria, learn how to pack your own lunches. It can be cheaper and healthier. Image source: iStock
Class PetsSchool was definitely better when your classroom had an adorable class pet you could play with and stare at - and sometimes, you even got to take it home with you! If you can't get a pet of your own, then why not volunteer at an animal shelter where you can hang out with your favorite little animals sometimes? Image source: iStock
Time OutOkay, clearly no one liked sitting in time out, but what's the high school alternative? Detention or even suspension. I'd take time out any day! And, in a weird way, you can still do this. If you feel super stressed or crazed or exhausted, give yourself 10 to 15 minutes to take a deep breath and get yourself together. Go for a walk if possible, or just sit in a private bathroom for some quiet time. Image source: iStock
What do you miss the most about elementary school? What did we forget to include? Let me know in the comments.