Too Shy to Participate

According to, nearly 1 in 8 shy teens may have some sort social phobia, making it more common than we think. It may not seem like a big deal to some people, but being shy or having social anxiety whether it’s diagnosed or not, can be a problem to some people, especially in a classroom.

Stuttering when ordering pizza over the phone or not being able to build up courage to ask for directions does tend to affect you the same way as if you were presenting of a classroom.

“Just the thought of messing up the presentation gets me worried that I’ll end up embarrassing myself in front of the class.” Zeinab Altawainy’s description wasn’t too far off from symptoms commonly found in a person going through social anxiety stated by “Symptoms include excess fear of situation where one may be… worried about embarrassment or humiliation.”

Mariam Shenaq, an 8th grader here at Unis Middle School, seems to have a similar description when it comes to describing how they feel when put on the spot. “My voice tends to crack and if I’m standing up, my legs feel weak”

“I really don’t like it when a teacher calls on me in class. There are times where even if I know the answer, I feel to shy to speak up or raise my hand.”says Shenaq. It may seem unfortunate to some students, but there are reasons to why some teachers choose to select certain kids. “(Choosing particular students) helps me keep some students on the same page as the rest of the class.” Mrs. Issa explained, a language arts teacher for our middle school. Nevertheless, students don’t always have to feel outside of their comfort zone “I always respect their requests, but I also allow opportunities for them to participate with ease.”

I understand that it must be nerve racking to speak up when you’re a typically shy person, but fortunately, Altawainy gives us some advice on how to deal with it. “You can try your best to not look at the people and focus on whatever you’re saying.”

“As long as it doesn’t get in the way of your goals in life, I think that you got it under control.” Believes Shenaq.

By Zainab Alnajim

Middle School Journalist


  1. Good job Zeniab I loved your topic, I related to alot of things in the story. Such as how I know the answer sometimes but don’t raise my hand because I’m afraid it’s incorrect. You should have interviewed younger students because they are more shy than 8th graders, but the story was great loved it.

  2. This article really stood out in my eyes. I understand many people are shy. Some people like I aren’t technically shy, but have been shy at some points. I am not a much of a shy person, but I can name you so many times where i was scared to present something in front of a class. To help me get through my nervous feelings, I simply think of good thoughts because believe it or not, it actually helps.

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