The Math Test

By: Evan Mei

It was a Friday morning. I had to finish this one last day of online school, then I was done for the rest of the day. Six more weeks and I would be finished with the school year. Oh, sweet, sweet summer break. I wished for it probably more than someone waiting for retirement. But for now, I’ve got to finish the school year. As I logged on to my computer, struggling to reach the keyboard due to the mountain of math papers and essays and Zoom codes, I realized something dreadful. Something that would cause much destruction to me mentally. The seventh grade math test, aka NJSLA. What made this test even more important was that if I did well, I would get into the Algebra 1 class, if I failed to get a high enough score, I was going to be taken to the seventh grade accelerated class. I couldn’t go there! I was still craving a challenge in math.

Well, there was the opportunity to get into the higher class via a supplement class, but that is basically a crash course that goes for three weeks every single day except the weekends. Besides, if I want to get into a good school in the future, it’ll look nicer on my record. But now wasn’t the time to think about the benefits. I had a test to study for. This test had seventh grade content on it. There was a sixth grade test, but that didn’t concern me. So I loaded up with tons and tons of seventh grade math content on Khan Academy. It was long and hard, and I had to finish it in the span of two to three weeks.

I finally finished with a couple of days to spare, but I was completely burned out. And when I logged onto the test, armed with paper and pencils and erasers, disappointment ensued. I realized that this “seventh grade test” hardly contained seventh grade content. Some questions were outrageously simple and easy, and I ended up reading the questions five or six times, then writing them down. I even pretended to drop my pencil and slapped myself in the face off camera in order to hopefully read things properly. But nothing changed. I knew for sure that this was the end.

One or two weeks later, I was playing piano, when my dad told me to see him. I looked at the test results, and I was amazed. I had entered the class, with countless points to spare. Sometimes, life is not always as it seems. In my case, I was lucky the test took a turn to make it much simpler than it should have been. But sometimes, we aren’t so lucky. So if something doesn’t go your way, don’t worry. Hopefully, you will be granted access to say “no” to your mom when she asks you to do seventh grade Khan Academy, because you have already done more than enough.

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