10 Useless Things You Were Taught In School

Written by Benny Koteeni

Did you know there are several useless things you were taught in school that you would never apply in your career life?

Looking back, I can remember a lot of things we put so much effort into learning in school, and it is quite surprising that I have never had to use so much of this to at least earn a living. 

You must have your own experiences too, of spending so much time memorizing things and participating in school activities that would never apply to your daily life in the outside world or your career.

It is not everything we learn in school that will apply to our careers. Some of them are outdated, may never apply to your chosen field, or we still can’t wrap our heads around why we were made to learn it.

10 Useless Things You Were Taught In School That Will Never Apply To Your Career

1. Cursive

Cursive Useless Things You Were Taught In School

Cursive has a number of names which include longhand and scriptwriting. It is any style of penmanship in which characters are written joined in a flowing manner, generally to make writing faster, in contrast, to block letters.

Some people may recognize it as just handwriting as it was known in some areas. It was time-consuming to learn, and I haven’t had to write in that fancy italics style anywhere. I think investing your time learning keyboarding would be more useful as different career fields demand the skill.

2. Counting In Various Languages

Counting in various languages 

Remember when you could count from one to ten in French and some other languages, and you felt you were officially a speaker? You can laugh now because you know better.

Learning a foreign language and eventually becoming a speaker takes more than learning how to count numbers. There’s no job description involving knowledge of a foreign language that would only require you to know how to count.

So there you have it, this is one of the numerous things we learn in school that will never apply to our career.

3. How To Play A Recorder

How to play a Recorder Useless Things You Were Taught In School

 We can all agree learning how to play the recorder was a waste of our time, and it has not been helpful to us in our careers. 

Most people did not even like the recorder’s sound, and none of us have looked at a recorder since.

It can only be helpful to those interested in teaching or learning music and how to play other instruments such as the flute or “Squidward’s clarinet”. 



It is very likely that you look at this and you can only wonder why learning this had anything to do with you. 

The acronym mnemonic SOH CAH TOA is used for remembering the definitions of the trigonometric functions sine, cosine, and tangent. 

It is possibly applicable in a few career fields that require trigonometry, but besides that, it might never be needed for a broader range of career options. 

5. Shorthand

Shorthand Useless Things You Were Taught In School

It must have been quite frustrating learning something that appeared so complex and not knowing how this would be applicable to your career in the future.

Very few people actually make use of shorthand skills acquired in school, and it is easier to say it might never be a requirement at your job.

6. Typewriting


It is possible you saw a computer today and might even own one, but what about a typewriter?

Learning how to use a typewriter was one of the tedious learning activities that we wish we could find a use for today. 

It must have been something important a very long time ago. Still, with computers everywhere and an easier way to type and print written materials, this skill is not one to be highly sorted after, and you can’t make a successful career out of it.

7. Periodic Table

Periodic table

Teachers employed different techniques in teaching this including creating songs. I still remember the songs but it’s just like holding a blank cheque and not having a bank to cash it.

Unless you’re a scientist or a science teacher, this piece of knowledge will never apply to your career. This is one o the Useless Things You Were Taught In School.

8. States And Capitals

States and capitals

Your teachers probably gave you the impression that this recitation was a golden key that could open all doors. But think of it, how many times have you had to recite this at work? 

The recitation of states and capitals is one of those things we were taught in school that won’t apply to our careers; it is only a piece of handy information but it is not an essential requirement that could apply to your career. 

9. Naming Planets

Naming Planets 

You were probably made to memorize the statement;

My Very Easy Method Just Speeds Up Naming Planets

The statement is a code that helps you remember the names of all the planets in the solar system using the initials of each word.

First off, Pluto is out of the picture now so the statement is no longer entirely correct. Secondly, this will never apply to so many careers. It is one of those Useless Things You Were Taught In School that will never apply in real life.

10. Long Division And Long Multiplication

Long division and long multiplication

Learning the basics regarding long division and long multiplication would not have been a terrible idea, but we just had to spend so much time and effort learning it over and over and over again.

It really didn’t make any sense how calculators were banned in math class in some grades; considering the fact that we would never use what we were learning and if by any chance the need arose, even your phone can be used to solve the math problem because who wants to waste so much time and effort on something that can be solved within seconds. 


We learn a truckload of things in school that we struggle to fit into our career but there are also many things we learned in school that has proven to be very helpful in building our knowledge and skill set which helps us grow exponentially in our career path and may apply to every career.

Introducing certain skills into the educational system will be more beneficial than a bunch of things passed down over time that no longer gives you an advantage in the outside world.

Beneficial skills that could be introduced include research, adaptability, content creation, communication, and problem-solving.

Other areas that could be very helpful include financial literacy: how to handle the mortgage, loans, and taxes; how to nail job interviews and how to select a suitable career path, etc 

You might also want to check out several career paths that need you to have a formal education. This post will be of immense benefit to you.

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