Students learned about basic car care during Adulting Day at Lake Shore High School in April.

Students learned about basic car care during Adulting Day at Lake Shore High School in April.

Photo provided by Lake Shore Public Schools.

Lake Shore High introduces ‘Adulting Day’ for students

By: Kristyne E. Demske | St. Clair Shores Sentinel | Published April 30, 2019

 Other classes, including a cooking lesson, were offered to students who will graduate this year.

Other classes, including a cooking lesson, were offered to students who will graduate this year.

Photo provided by Lake Shore Public Schools


ST. CLAIR SHORES — A lot of students turn 18 during their senior year of high school.

They can vote, they can serve in the military — but are they really ready to be adults?

“They just gave you a lot of information that you’ll need later in life (that) you don’t think about,” said Lake Shore High School senior Justin Chambe.

He was speaking about the school’s first-ever “Adulting Day,” which Lake Shore held for its seniors April 10.

Principal Janelle Bross said that she first heard about an out-of-state school hosting a similar event and thought it would be an “awesome” experience for her students. When students in the other three grades at the school were all taking state standardized tests, it seemed like a great time to offer the opportunity to learn about money management, life in college, car care and banking to her seniors.

The graduating seniors got to attend three one-hour sessions during the day, choosing from money management; police interactions; job hunts, interviews and what happens next; car care basics; banking; MichiganWorks; introduction to cooking; military opportunities; freshman year and beyond; mindfulness; and renting.

Some of the sessions were taught by people connected to Lake Shore, such as the car care class, which was taught by the father of a junior at the school who is a mechanic, and some were taught by organizations like the Michigan State University Extension.

Bross said she decided to dedicate a day to learning life skills after hearing feedback from former students who said that there were things they wished they would have known before going off on their own, or things they wished they would have been taught in high school.

“Even from our teachers, there were a lot of things they wished they would have known” at age 18 or 19 that they didn’t learn until later, she explained.

“Learning the Pythagorean Theorem is helpful, but how to change a tire” is more useful, Chambe said.

He attended the sessions on money management, interviewing and renting, the latter of which he said was very helpful because there were things he wouldn’t have known about renting a house or apartment, like how many fees may be required.

In the money management class, he said they were all given fake paychecks. Then, he said, they had to spread their money out among their bills, like housing and their phone bill.

“Then, like, you broke your leg — part of your paycheck’s gone. You had to, with your paycheck, kind of budget yourself,” Chambe said.

He said the teacher also asked them to determine what their worst purchase mistake is, which he found enlightening.

“Once you calculate it all out, she bought coffee (for) $1.48 a day, and over a year she’d spent $400, and (it) really made you think about, wow, this cheap purchase that I’m making” actually costs a lot, he said. “I need to stop making these small purchases because in the long run, it goes a long way.”

Bross said the session on police interactions, given by St. Clair Shores Community Resource Officer Chad Hammer, was very popular, as he explained to the students what they’re required to do if they are stopped or pulled over by the police, what their rights are and what rights police officers have.

About 170 of the 300 senior high school students took part in the day; some students had already earned the full amount of credits for high school and aren’t attending the third trimester.

Bross said she believes that, locally, the event is unique to Lake Shore High School. She said she definitely plans to have a similar event in 2020 and may expand the offering into a class in the future so that students can get more in-depth information about certain topics.

“If we had a whole week for one thing, that would be very nice,” Chambe agreed.