What You Can Learn From Each High School Archetype

Whether we'd like to admit it or not, there is plenty that our classmates can teach us.

It's easy to see the popular crowd as image obsessed airheads or the academic kids as four-eyed nerds, but at the end of the days these are all just limiting stereotypes based on little more than movies.

The Plastics eating lunch

(Mean Girls via Paramount Pictures)

Scroll below to be schooled on what looking deeper into these high school archetypes can teach us:

The Jock: Commitment

When you look at the jocks you may see average (or below average) students whose metaphor for life is centered around the big game. But when you look deeper you'll find an immense amount of commitment. These classmates are often spending their time before and after school, on the weekends and during summer vacation training and working hard. Just because this group stereotypically isn't focused on academics doesn't mean that they're cruising through school. When was the last time you committed to something with such determination? Sure, you may have put a ton of blood, sweat and tears into that Science Fair project, but the jocks have been working towards one goal for years, not just months.

Glee football jocks on field

(Glee via 20th Century Fox)

 

The Queen Bee: Confidence

We all at least kind of want to be the Queen Bee of the popular girls, which is why our jealousy often rears it's ugly emotion in the form of animosity. But if there is one thing we can learn from the leader of the popular pack, it's confidence. The Queen Bee doesn't become the monarch without an arsenal of self-love. That's not to say that these ladies don't have their fair share of insecurities, but exuding confidence is the best kind of all day concealer for those self-conscious flare ups. Hold your head up high and strut like you mean it because this will help you feel more comfortable in your skin and will garner respect from your fellow classmates. It's easy to target someone who appears meek, but with an armor of courage you'll stand out without being singled out.

Regina George looking glam in her back brace

(Mean Girls via Paramount Pictures)

 

The STEM Nerd: Knowledge > Popularity

No, they probably don't have the greatest fashion sense, and yeah, they are often seen running with their bulging backpacks on, but these nerds have one very important thing right: Knowledge is valuable—way more valuable than "looking cool." It's actually really impressive to study hard for tests and to take your classwork seriously. Next time you hear them cracking a joke about physics or calculus, you should know that it's not the joke that's weird, it's that you don't get the joke. From the kids who make robots on the weekends and gather in classrooms during lunch, you should take away the lesson that high school is only four short years, so spend that time being yourself rather than trying to be someone you're not. These kids are living their truest selves and aren't afraid of what you think of them.

Still from Freaks and Geeks

(Freaks and Geeks via DreamWorks Television)

 

The Theater Geek: Passion

It's easy to feel like, hello, we're in the 21st century, why are you all quoting Shakespeare on the daily? But the theater geeks know a thing or two about passion and there is nothing that you or anyone can do to quell it. They live loud because their motto is that "all the world is a stage" and they feel free to perform anywhere and everywhere. No matter what your passion might be, you should take a page from the theater geek's script and let it fill every aspect of your presence. While it sometimes may seem unpopular to really really care about something—whether it's school, an extracurricular, or a hobby—these kids have true perspective from playing so many parts.

Still from the Gilmore Girls revival of Stars Hallow musical

(Gilmore Girls: A Year In the Life via Warner Bros.)

 

The Art Student: Creativity

You may see them around campus wearing mismatched socks or jeans with hand written lyrics across the denim, but don't underestimate the art student. This group thinks abstractly and can't be confined to any one box. In the land of uniformity (aka high school), these are the students who understand that being different isn't a bad thing, it's a creative choice. Because of this open-mindedness they are free to explore and invent rather than living day to day in the same monotonous routine. Try to change things up every now and again and never, ever hold back. The more full-out you live your life—whether it's your wardrobe, your hairstyle, or even the way you spend your free time—you'll have a whole lot more fun once you shake it up.

Janis and Damian sitting on grass

(Mean Girls via Paramount Pictures)

 

The Class President: Multitasking

While someone might use the term "bossy" to describe the leaders of our class and school, that would be a misnomer. The student body president is an involved member of your class and likes to have their hand in every aspect of school life, from dances to yearbook and of the event posters in between. From this classmate you can learn the value of multi-tasking. How many times have you uttered the semi-true words, "I don't have time." Sure, you have tons of homework piling up, plus practice after school and, hello, a social life you'd like to pencil in. But the truth is that we have way more time than we think. Imagine cutting out the hours spent on social media… you'd really gain a lot of time, just as your class prez. When you dedicate your time to things that matter and become involved, you heighten your ability to multitask and actually get so much more accomplished than you ever could have imagined. That's a pretty good feeling.

Still from Election, class president

(Election via Paramount Pictures)

 

The Rebel: Rules Can Be Guidelines

You may know this person as a troublemaker or the reigning king of detention, but really they just know that rules can sometimes be broken. We have tons of rules and regulations put on us every single day, from dress code to when and how you're allowed to use the restroom during class hours. The Rebel is fed up with the nitpicking and would like to exercise some freedom every once in a while. Sure, these rules are also here to keep us safe, but there are many examples in history of this rebellious nature changing unjust laws. Rosa Parks didn't allow someone to take her seat just because an arbitrary law said she should, did she? No! While we hope your school isn't as oppressive as her day, we'd like you to learn a thing or two from the rebel who insists on having their voice heard… even if it means throwing the rule book out the window.

End frame of The Breakfast Club

(The Breakfast Club via Universal Pictures)

 

The Teacher's Pet: Respect

We mock the Teacher's Pet incessantly, but really, what's so wrong with showing some respect for our administrators? This classmate just wants to be well-liked by the person doling out grades. If you ask me, that's a pretty genius move. Get on the teacher's good side, people! It's much better than being on their bad side, that's for sure. But deeper than finding loopholes in the system, the Teacher's Pet teaches us to show respect in order to gain it. Teachers have it tough—even the ones you can't stand—so being your best self during class will not only help you, but it'll help your teacher and hopefully even the most beastly of them will ease up.

Ralph tattling to Miss Finster, Recess

(Recess via Disney Animation Television)

 

The Loner: Individualism

The Loner is most definitely an introvert, meaning they recharge their energy from flying solo. We may assume that these kids are hanging by themselves because they can'make friends, but a truer reason may be that they enjoy their privacy. Sometimes we can get so wrapped up in our "squad" and spending time in big groups of family and friends that we lose a small piece of our individuality. By reacquainting yourself with the inner-you through a little personal space, you may discover that your likes and interests have been put to the side for the greater good of conformity. Try to find the bravery to reconnect with yourself by sitting alone at lunch or spending a Friday night in your bedroom. You'll be able to find the self you thought you lost.

Violet from The Incredibles sitting against wall

(The Incredibles via Walt Disney Pictures)

 

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