Students Reveal Which Seemingly Pointless Lessons Ended Up Changing Their Lives

We have all sat through hours of school where we believed... "none of this is ever going to matter!" Raise your hands if you thought Algebra would REALLY matter. Go ahead. We'll wait. There are so many life lessons we missed in the small lessons apparently. It seems people use Math and analytical skills on the regular. Wish I knew that then.

Redditor _PyroShotGaming wanted students of life to admit... What did you learn in school that you thought would end up being useless but actually helped you a lot though life?


That situation on group projects where half (or more) of the "team" you're assigned to doesn't care about doing any of the work and just wants to get a passing grade through no knowledge or effort.

Well, that's a pretty handy guide to the working world. In most office jobs I've had 25% of the people did 75% of the work (or more). . .


Typing, but not in the way you'd think. Our typing teacher drilled into our heads that it would go slowly at first, and that you would build up speed and confidence in time. I've been able to apply that kind of thinking to every single thing I do and it really has helped me not to get discouraged. I've gotten jobs in fields that I never would have thought to apply for because even though I couldn't do the skill now, I would be able to do it soon. Same with hobbies. It's wild to get really good at something random and turn around and look at how far you've come.


Typing. I had to take it in HS and thought it was an absolute joke that it was a required class. It's been my best return on (forced) investment though, by far.


School built the foundation, but various MMORPGs and just chatting with my friends on AIM are what gave me the raw speed.


I had a spelling test in elementary school. One of the words we had to spell was "alot," as in 'I have alot of candy.'

Lo and behold it is revealed that "a lot" is actually two words, not one. It was a trick question.

As I imagine many redditors can relate, I was incensed. How dare she tarnish my spelling test score with this deception. I was the angriest 7 yo in the world, and I never trusted Ms. Tosher again.

In fact, I was so scarred by this betrayal that I've never been able to write the words"a lot" without thinking about the spelling test. And wouldn't you know it, in my whole life since that day I've never made the mistake of writing "alot" instead of"a lot."


In college I had to take the class "Witch Trials in Medieval and Renaissance France" because it was the only course that fulfilled a general education requirement that also fit in my schedule.

The class felt like an unbelievable waste of time. Every thing was working against it: it was an 100 person lecture, the professor lacked any charisma or presentation skills, half of the class time was spent watching absolutely terrible films that illustrated one historical point or another; but I was paying for it so I slumped back in my chair and suffered through every lecture. If you had ask me coming out of college what was the dumbest course I took I would have pointed to this one.

But now I honestly find myself sharing things I learned in that class a couple times a year. I have managed to impress some seriously accomplished people with a well placed knowledgeable comment on medieval folklore or an explanation of the mechanics of witch hunts and it all came from that one class. I don't even work in the field I majored in so it turns out the things I learned in a class about French witches has been more useful to me than some of the stuff I spent hours closely pouring over and committing to memory.


Grammar. And just to practice the habit of checking my work in general. Everyone needs someone who knows how to write. And you'd be surprised how often someone will dismiss you out of hand due to simple errors on cover letters or resumes.


In high school, I used to be the guy how would always complain during algebra saying "Only engineers need to know this. Why are we doing this?"_Now I'm an engineer.


How to figure out if a month has 31 days or not with my knuckles.


The most surprisingly useful class I ever took was a class I took on a lark in college. "Greek and Latin Roots in English." I have lost count of how many times I have been able to deduce the meaning of words or phrases that otherwise would have been totally opaque to me.

Yeah it doesn't help me build a deck the way geometry does, but its done better for me than a large chunk of my other college classes.


Essays. I hated essays up to about 10th grade and still even then but it is important to know how to make a claim and find solid evidence to back that up and provide a reasoning for why, seems a lot of people don't know how to do that.


How to fall properly;

I was never the most athletic kid in school (not the least but not the most) and I remember being bored outta my skull one middle school gym class about how to brace yourself for falls and other stuff like that.

Then a couple of years after graduation I was working for a small company (very small) doing Telecom work and found my ladder about to slip off the building while I was in the process of climbing it. As soon as I realized it was going down I dropped the item I was hauling up and bailed to the side so as to not get tangled up in the ladder.

I fell approximately 20 ft onto pavement, but thanks to that stupid gym class all I did was fracture my wrist.

I fractured the hell out of it and didn't have full full use of it again until years later but I didn't land on my back or head or anything crazy like that.


I use the Pythagorean therum way more than I ever thought I would.



I took three years of it, and I was never particularly good at it. I hated languages at the time -- my parents pressured me into doing the three language options at GCSE, which in my school was French, Spanish and Latin as an after-school class -- and I never saw the point of learning a dead language.

Now I learn languages for fun, and it's nice to have a background in romance languages. There's a lot of 'Oh, this makes sense now!', especially when it comes to things like noun cases.

Who's got two thumbs and knows the difference between an ablative and a dative?


Statistics. In particular, some basic concepts like mean vs. median, statistical significance, confidence intervals, Bayes' Theorem.


I took drama throughout high school and although it hasn't landed me any acting gigs (yet ;)) it did seriously bolster my acting abilities and to put on a convincing game face which has proved invaluable in making friends and connecting with people.


Medicine. Hear me out on this one. Started out as a premedical student, but flunked calculus. Had to switch majors to history during sophomore year to save my academic scholarships. I thought I had wasted my time since the odds of using that level of medical training (basic anatomy, biology, and chemistry) were slim to none. My first job after getting my masters was in a history of medicine archive, parlayed that into working at a federal science agency.


As a non native English speaker, pronunciation.


Shop class.

It enabled me to save almost $100k over 25 years of home ownership by doing repair and maintenance myself.

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