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Test-taking in the Gym: Forget What You’ve Heard

Eliza Yass

The day before I was supposed to take my first-ever test in the gymnasium, for Advanced Placement U.S. Government and Politics, the talk amongst my fellow students was not about the test itself. On the contrary, it was about the test environment.
Testing in the gym was not new; neither were the rumors I heard about the temperature dipping below 60°, the absence of a single functioning clock, the incessantly loud air-conditioning system, and awful lighting.
But after my experience, I will tell any future test-taker who walks through the double doors into the Staples gym to forget whatever you’ve heard. Taking a test in the gym was not that bad.
Actually, I think I can go out on a limb and say that I preferred it to a regular classroom, a room in the library, or a learning center, the other typical exam sites.
The best part about being in the gym is that it is secluded from the rest of the school. The number of students walking by, and walking by loudly, is low. No other classrooms are around; noise is as limited as it gets in this school. There is no outside distraction.
Regarding the temperature, I’ll admit it was a little cool. But personally, I’d rather be chilly and kept alert than sweating in the baking heat that many classrooms, particularly on the second floor, have started to generate this time of year. And if being a couple degrees under room temperature is such an issue, just wear a sweatshirt or jacket. I brought one with me, but upon realizing that the temperature was fine, I took it off.
Also, forget about the missing clock rumor; there were three accurate clocks in my view.
To be honest, now that I’ve experienced one test in the gym, I wish my regular finals in June were in the gym, too.

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About the Contributor
Eliza Yass
Eliza Yass, Web Opinions Editor

Eliza Yass ’14 is not your average cheerleader. On the field, she gets spectators pumped up at football games. But off the field, her engaging opinion pieces give them the scoop on controversial issues.

Yass discovered her passion for writing opinion pieces last year in the Advanced Journalism class. Ever since then, she has been speaking her mind, loud and proud, on everything from Apple software to fake ID’s.

“I’m a really opinionated person,” Yass admitted with a laugh, adding that she doesn’t get much heat for her articles other than the occasional online comments.

The articles she is most proud of are the ones that cover hot-button issues, such as Plan B contraceptives for teens and last year’s incident with the racy posters at the Pink football game.

And while most Staples students fret about typical high school drama, Yass worries about more substantial social issues, such as serving the needy and defending the disadvantaged.

“Opinions cause social change,” said Yass, and it is clear she really cares about making a difference, not only by writing about hot topics but also by advocating for change.

In her spare time, Yass volunteers with STAR, a Norwalk-based organization that serves individuals with developmental disabilities. She hopes to continue spreading justice in the future by promoting social change through law or journalism.

There is no doubt that Yass will bring lots of pep, pompoms, and perspective to her last year on the Inklings staff.

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