Here is our first Panther Pen student piece. This writing came out of an assignment for students to write about something that they feel passionately about. The perspective below is a reaction to the negative stereotypes about cheerleaders that are so common in our society.
Enjoy, Ms. Jenson
Just Because I Cheer by Crystal S.
Just because Iím a cheerleader doesnít mean Iím like the ones you see on t.v. or in the movies. I hate getting judged by people when I tell them that Iím a cheerleader. They look at me with a face of disgust. Not all cheerleaders are stuck up or think that theyíre better than everyone else. Each year is a new squad, with new members, new friends, new challenges. Cheerleading is more than a ďhobbyĒ; itís a passion.
Sometimes, Iím by myself when I get judged for being a cheerleader and itís not fair. Our coaches remind us that there is no ďIĒ in team. Cheering really makes you believe that. You do everything together, from eating dinner, facing consequences, goofing off, and ďbonding through sweat and pain.Ē No one ever gets left out. No one on my team would make someone else feel bad for something they love.
I donít know why I enjoy cheering so much. Maybe itís because I get a new family each year, or because I forget about everything during cheer practice. Maybe itís because cheering comes with many opportunities to meet new people and travel. Whatever it is, I will continue to cheer regardless of stereotypes. Call it what you want, whether you believe cheer is a sport or not, we go through the same pain and practice as others go through for the sports that they are passionate about. Yes, I play soccer and basketball, but there will always be a place on the cheer team for me.