by Marisa Kaplita When you’re a child all you want to do is grow up and be a big kid, a teenager, a driver, a college student, an adult, and so on. Where ever you are in life, all you want to do is grow up, but then somewhere along the way, somewhere in the high school years, all you want to be is a kid again where all the responsibilities of school, work, and money are not even a formed thought. For most high school is a place to get back all the time from childhood that was missed out on, because before you know it college will come and so will jobs and marriage and kids and lots of different responsibilties, then there is no more time to goof off and make mistakes. There is nothing wrong with trying to act on your inner child, and sometimes it can be good for you, taking a break from the grudging stress of school work will keep you from exploding from trying to retain too much information for too long. However there is a point at which you need to grow up and be a role model. High school students need to be aware of the influences that they create, especially on the younger generations in Branford. High school students are awesome and unbearable cool in the minds of elementary and middle schoolers, we represent their future and who they will soon grow up to be. They look towards us as role models and try to be like us. It’s great to know that all these kids are looking up to us, but its also a scary thought to think of the influences some of the kids in this school are making. It’s not okay that kids who are only in sixth or seventh grade are swearing, drinking, having sex, or doing drugs, and it’s happening, in our town of Branford. Kids of only 12 or 13 are barely able to get into PG-13 rated movies, so where are they learning all these R rated things? Television and the internet are rotting out the brains of our youth and most have lost any respect for authority. So when teachers and adults are no longer source of respect it falls upon us, the Branford Hishschoolites, to create a good influence for our younger generation to fallow. Every student in this school knows at least one child of 10 or 14, either a sibling, family member, or a child from an organization or group. Everyone in this school has a chance to make an impacted on a child and wether one chooses to make one or not. Even if you don’t feel any desire to make an impact on a future Branford High schooler, atleast reframe from making a bad influence. You may thing you have no power as a student, but you have more power than you might think. And the things that you do will get talked about in the depths of the Middle school locker bay, so make sure you think before you act, if not for you, then for the kids that are watching.