Definition Rewrite – alwaystired

The Importance of Sleep on Adolescents

A few hours of sleep seems insignificant, yet could be life-changing for an entire generation of adolescents. Schools have been neglecting the needs of their students since the dawn of public education by starting classes in the early hours of the day. Teenagers across the country are compelled to wake up before they have reached their fullest potential of rest, then expected to be at their peak levels of focus and determination for the following seven hours. Successful nations are shaped by intelligent and determined members of the working class, yet this is unattainable when taking into mind that positive work ethics are rooted in children arriving at school ready to learn. Processing the skills they need to succeed in life becomes a second priority to those who are stumbling into class like zombies, fixated on when they will finally have the chance to take a nap. There is an endless supply of studies proving that even slightly altering the time high school begins leads to higher grades, healthy mindsets, and perseverance in students, yet school districts turn a blind eye to these obvious advantages. It is time high schools prioritize their students and make the change.

A lack of sleep is directly associated with mental and physical defects. Among these is insomnia, where falling asleep and waking up feels like an impossible challenge. The inability to sleep at night becomes a dilemma when it is taken into mind that adolescence is a significant period of growth for the human brain. The longer one’s rest is interrupted, the more issues they begin to experience, much like Ellen S. Bruce mentioned in her article Sleep in Adolescents and Young Adults, when stating, “An early indication of patients developing problems with their sleep can be sleep fragmentation, where individuals have difficulty remaining asleep, resulting in them feeling unrefreshed.” During a person’s teenage years, their body is biologically prone to staying up late. Waking up at five in the morning would be extremely harmful to somebody who fell asleep at three. An inadequate sleep cycle curses children with illnesses that follow them into adulthood. Though once their decline in health linked to sleep deficiency is set into motion, it only worsens from there. Insomnia is the gateway to other sicknesses.

In their clinical review titled Sleep Disorders in Children and Adolescents, Suresh Kotagal and Paul Pianosi list examples of illnesses they are at risk for, including, “delayed sleep phase syndrome, narcolepsy, depression, anxiety, and restless leg syndrome.” Disorders like these call for medical attention to cure which is very time-consuming. Not to mention, the hardships that accompany them result in even fewer hours of sleep, launching a person into a downward spiral. These illnesses often become the focus of their victims’ existences and their consequences never truly disappear. If sleep-related disorders are prevented from their origin, teenagers will acquire more time to focus on their grades as well as get their lives together. Fixing these issues is the key to enhancing adolescents’ quality of life.

Low levels of sleep at night also result in poor moods and fatigue throughout teenagers’ days at school. Students will lose their motivation to learn as teachers are difficult to pay attention to and lessons become harder to comprehend. Poor grades will be soon to follow and the build-up of these burdens will entangle them in a lethal cycle of staying up late and waking up early.

It is important to keep in mind that teachers, office workers, and other educational staff members are expected to arrive even earlier than their students. Naturally, we should question if starting school later in the day would affect them positively or negatively. Members of the Oxford Academy conducted a study around this manner, titling their results Impact of Changing School Starting Times on Teachers/Staff. This experiment compared an elementary school starting earlier in the day than they previously had to middle and high schools in the same district beginning later.

Educators who taught the two older grade levels took advantage of the opportunity to receive more rest, reporting later wake-up times and increased total hours of sleep. In contrast, there was no change in the amount of rest elementary school teachers obtained. Though, they reported feeling less prepared to start their day. On the contrary, middle and high school staff experienced a decrease in daytime sleepiness. There was a clear difference between the outcomes of the study on schools beginning later and earlier.

All research considered, starting school later in the morning would be extremely beneficial to both students and staff. Not only would the attentiveness and energy of teenagers be heightened, but the quality of teaching would skyrocket. Professors would be motivated to put their full potential into their lessons, as well as begin the day by greeting their students in an upbeat manner. Because they would be able to pay more attention to each individual member of their classroom, they would gain the chance to address any problems with efficiency. In turn, students would be less reluctant to learn, leading to an increase in productivity for everyone involved.

High school districts across the country would profit from adjusting their start and end times to later hours. Psychologists have been recommending for years that classes commence at appropriate times for teenagers to acquire a proper night’s sleep considering the effects of this have been nothing but positive. Adolescents’ grades would drastically improve in response to their better mental and physical health, increased motivation to learn, and better quality teachers. Everybody in the building from children to staff members would kick off their days ready to tackle the next few hours without sleepiness clouding their minds.


Sleep in adolescents and young adults” Clinical Medicine. Ellen S Bruce, Laura Lunt, Janet E McDonagh, 17 October 2017. 17 October 2022.

Sleep disorders in children and adolescents” The BMJ. Suresh Kotagal, Paul Pianosi, 6 April 2006. 17 October 2022.

Impact of Changing School Start Times on Teachers/Staff” Oxford Academy. Amy E Plog, Janise McNally, Kyla L Wahlstrom, Lisa J Meltzer, 12 April 2019. 17 October 2022.

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9 Responses to Definition Rewrite – alwaystired

  1. alwaystired247 says:

    I would like feedback on the quality of my paragraphs and if there is enough support to get rid of doubt and convince the audience that starting school later has more benefits than risks. Thank you!

    • davidbdale says:

      Thank you, AT. I really appreciate the specific request. I find I can be much more helpful when I know what sort of feedback you require.

      You neglected to put it in the Feedback Please category, but I fixed that.

      • alwaystired247 says:

        Thank you! I am unsure if I have enough evidence to fully sell my point or if I need more points. Will we be putting all of our evidence in this section of the essay, or should I save some for the next two portfolio assignments?

  2. davidbdale says:

    Here’s the thing about Rhetorical Questions, AT:
    They have to be answered.
    Right away.
    Any delay is fatal to your argument.

    Your Question: Could a few hours of extra sleep completely change the trajectory of a teenager’s life?

    The value of the question is that it creates the POSSIBILITY that your reader will CONSIDER that IT MIGHT.

    EVERYTHING you say after raising that possibility MUST CONTRIBUTE TO the conclusion you want your reader to draw. Let’s see if your next sentences meet the need. I’ll provide commentary from a typical reader (TR).

    Schools have begun in the early hours of the day since the creation of education.

    —TR: This actually suggests that perhaps the early start times have been proven to be beneficial. It certainly doesn’t suggest the opposite.

    A majority of adolescents in America are required to wake up before the sun even rises, then expected to be at their peak levels of focus and determination for the following seven hours.

    —TR: Sounds as if we’re training them from adolescence to make the best use of their most productive hours. Reinforces the status quo.

    Considering they are learning information relating to their lives and eventual occupations, the future depends on the things they are taught.

    —TR: Correct. And that’s exactly WHY we want them to rise and shine!

    Though, it is hard to believe they will be able to use that knowledge if they are too tired to process it in the first place.

    —TR: Good point. So you would encourage them to get to bed early. Right?

    Time and time again, studies have proven that starting school later in the morning provided countless benefits and progress beyond belief, yet most school districts are reluctant to make this change.

    —TR: Where the heck did this come from? You’re confusing me now. I thought we were on the same page. When you say “beyond belief,” I’m prepared to agree. The supposed benefits must be imaginary.

    Because sleep is what gives people the ability to function properly, waking up at later times would benefit high-school-aged children in terms of their grades and mental well-being, causing them to not only gain more focus and motivation but also obtain a positive outlook and enough energy to tackle the day ahead of themselves.

    —TR: I have no idea where you’re going with this, but I must say, it comes completely out of the blue. Are you dealing off the bottom of the deck?

    Do you see the danger here, AT? Vague questions don’t substitute for bold claims. If you know you can prove that late starts are better, why tempt confusion with a question?

  3. davidbdale says:

    See how different the paragraph sounds when you START AND STAY bold.

    A few hours of extra sleep COULD RESCUE A FAILING TEENAGER, perhaps even a GENERATIONS OF TEENAGERS. Since the beginning of formal public education, SCHOOLS HAVE IGNORED THE NEEDS OF YOUNG STUDENTS by starting clases in the early hours of the day. MOST adolescents in America are COMPELLED TO WAKE UP BEFORE THEY’RE FULLY RESTED, then expected to be at their peak levels of focus and determination for the following seven hours. THEIR FUTURE SUCCESS, in fact OUR NATION’S PRODUCTIVITY depend on them arriving at school ready to learn. INSTEAD, THEY STUMBLE INTO CLASS TOO TIRED to process THE SKILLS THEY’LL NEED TO SUCCEED IN LIFE. COUNTLESS STUDIES PROVE that A SMALL DEVIATION IN SCHOOL START TIMES 1) BENEFIT 1; 2) BENEFIT 2, and 3) BENEFIT 3, YET school districts RESIST THESE OBVIOUS BENEFITS. It’s time for school districts nationwide to “Embrace the Shift.”

  4. davidbdale says:

    Helpful, Always Tired?
    (I sure hope so. It’s the best I have to offer. 🙂 )

  5. davidbdale says:

    You don’t make this mistake in later paragraphs, AlwaysTired. You seem to understand the value of making a bold claim that makes clear the benefits of a later start time and then providing the evidence to back up that claim.

    So . . . why start weak if you have a strong case?

  6. alwaystired247 says:

    I’m sorry I took so long to rewrite this. I’ve been a little busy lately and it completely slipped my mind, but I will make sure to set reminders from now on on my phone.
    I took your advice and fixed the first paragraph. I used your rewrite of it to guide me but I tried to also put it in my own words. I also went through the essay and made sure that I backed up every claim I made right away, as well as made sure to sound firm in my beliefs.
    I want to know if my changes made the essay any better and my point more convincing. Do I sound more sure of myself and are my claims better supported? I feel like I sound lazy no matter how hard I work on this. I’m confused about how to make my Casual sound different than this as well and I’m going to try hard to not make it two copies of the same essay.
    All of the research I do has the same result, which is that starting school later is a positive thing. I only found one source that talks about the negatives, which I think I’ll include in my Casual. I know I need to think outside of the box to find more, as well as different evidence to support my claim than the ones I have been using, but for some reason, I’m having a hard time with that. I wish I picked a topic that could be better debated with more evidence from both sides haha. Thank you for your feedback!

  7. davidbdale says:

    You’ve made substantial improvements here signaling your arguments, AT. The result is a persuasive argument that guides readers well through the steps. It feels primarily Causal, as you have noted, so I understand why you worry you won’t be able to distinguish the two short essays. Of course the division into three short arguments is entirely artificial. Nobody actually writes in chunks of 1000 words. You would benefit from some contrary evidence, but you’re unlikely to find anyone who goes on record to say kids need less sleep or that there are no disadvantages to short sleep. So maybe you should be questioning (as many of your readers no doubt will be) whether starting later is the only solution. Obviously, students could shift their own schedules by going to bed earlier. Is there any actual evidence that when schools start later students DON’T just go to bed even later, achieving no benefit at all?

    Provisionally graded. Always eligible for Revisions and a Regrade.

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