Not allowed to have our cake and eat it too

Amber Rolland


It happens all the time. My entire class will be in the middle of a test in our third period class and a sound much like that of a roaring lion will rip through the silence. Every eye in the room is then pin-pointed at the red-faced person who is clutching their stomach and angrily whispering for it to stop growling. Could these abdominal outbursts be silenced by allowing students to eat and drink in class?

I believe it would be safe to say that those who oppose students being allowed to eat and drink in class would throw out the “It would disrupt class and inhibit learning” excuse right off the bat. However, I can recall scores of times when I was in class and someone’s stomach growled so loudly that everyone else burst out in giggles, effectively clogging everyone’s train of thought at least for a few moments. Not only that but as a student who starts getting hungry during the classes before lunch, I can say without a doubt that the only thing I am really thinking about during those times is what’s being served in the cafeteria for lunch. Perhaps if students were allowed to eat in class, we would be able to spend less time focusing on getting rid of the munchies and more time on learning.

For the past 13 years it’s been pounded into my head that breakfast is the most important meal of the day and that I should never skip it when taking any standardized test. However, I think the regular tests I take throughout the year are just as important as standardized tests, primarily because these actually affect my grades. Like a significant number of other students, I don’t always have time to eat breakfast in the morning. If we’re supposed to believe the test taking tips that have been spouted at us, there should be room for the most important meal of the day in order for our brains to be performing at maximum capacity.

As it stands right now students are occasionally allowed to leave the classroom to get a drink of water while teachers sip on their morning cup of joe or mid-afternoon glass of sweet tea. What’s the difference between a teacher drinking a soda in class and a student drinking a soda in class? Nothing.

Of course, the question of where to draw the line remains. Any noise that would result from the opening or crinkling of wrappers could be eliminated by making it a rule that only foods opened prior to the class bell could be eaten. I highly doubt anyone would bring in much more than a package of peanut butter and crackers or a candy bar, which would not be a distraction at all. We see each other eat in the cafeteria every day and seeing someone eat in a classroom would be no different.

I’m not proposing anything crazy here. All I’m asking for is to allow us to nourish our bodies while we nourish our minds.