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The student news site of Spring Hill High School


The student news site of Spring Hill High School


Measuring Maturity

Alyssa Budd, 11, demonstrates their violin to Dayton Creek Elementary School students. The high school hosted groups of elementary students to observe band, orchestra, and choir (Photo by K.Tran).

A prominent discussion about the younger generations and the rate at which they are developing has become more heavily thought about as Generation Z and Generation Alpha are growing up. The factors that shaped the younger generation’s childhood are beginning to show their effects; this has sparked further debates and research about the developments of Generation Z and Alpha.

“I think that trends move today at a much faster rate than they used to. I think teens today, younger, earlier on, and at a much faster rate, move through trends like the way they dress, talk, and interact with each other,” Carter Couchman, English teacher, said. “But the actual maturity level and how they perform academically at school has remained consistent between generations as far as I can tell. They might look a little bit older and dress a little bit differently than kids of the past, but I think the general maturity is about the same.”

There are various lenses that one can look at the topic with: a parent, a teenager, or a teacher.

“With high school kids, I would say I see them from a different point of view than in a classroom… A lot of freshmen get really heated in games, and by their senior year realize that in the grand scheme of life it’s not that important.

Morgan McGinnis, 12 raises their hand to participate in class. A drive to learn can also be considered a sign of maturity (Photo by G.Galloway).

They still participate, but seeing them mature in that way is pretty big. I see a lot of kids grow up in the four years,” Jaime Oshel, gym teacher, said.

A difference in opinion is common between the younger generations and the older ones.

“I think teens and kids are growing up at the same rate, but I just think that we go through different things. Now we have technology and stuff, which I think holds us back, but we’re also more exposed to things, but I don’t think that’s any different than what our parents have been through,” Casey Saylor, 9, said.

Of course, each person can have a different experience.

“I feel like I am in between [a kid and an adult]. And also, with me, I wasn’t one that really had technology when I was younger,” Monet Edwards, 11, said. “So I feel like I’ve grown up at a fairly steady rate. Not super quickly like a lot of the younger children now. But yeah I feel like I’m probably at a, quote on quote, normal maturity level or speed of growing up.”

The increase in the use of technology and social media can be a contributing factor in the change that may be occurring.

“I think our attention spans are definitely shorter. I know everyone kind of says that but I think it’s true. I feel like in class I always see people zoned out, and I don’t know if it’s because we don’t get enough sleep anymore because we’re on our phones or if it’s because TikToks are so short and you get that dopamine or whatever,” Saylor said.

Maturity can look different depending on the person and their stage in life.

Lexington Romo, 9; Jillian Linger, 9; Colton Northup, 9; Isla Melius, 9 play a game during Oshel’s gym class. Oshel interacts with all four grade levels and is able to see their students grow up (Photo by E.Harmon).

“My freshman year of college into my sophomore year of college I definitely noticed a growing desire within myself to become more knowledgeable and to care more about academics, studying, and learning,” Couchman said. “In high school, I was a good student but it was sort of forced on me by either my peers who were doing well in school or my parents who wanted me to succeed. It wasn’t a self-driven kind of maturity.”

A person’s character can be an indicator for maturity.

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About the Contributor
Kathlyn Tran, Copy Editor
Hi! This is my second year of SPUB and I’m excited to be on staff again. In my first year I’ve gained experience in writing, designing, and photographing. I hope to improve my skills in all of the things I listed previously. I think journalism, especially student journalism, informs people and gives them a voice. I’m excited to see how the yearbook will turnout this year and what I get to write about this year. Other than SPUB and school I enjoy reading, listening to music, and hanging out with friends and family.

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