Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Back To School Blues? Or Not!

So the first semester did not go so well; you struggled with some modules, did not enjoy your group projects, student life, and were burned out at the end of the semester. Now that the long awaited semester break has come to an end, here are some tips on how to lead a more fulfilling semester!

TIP 1: Enjoy Your Learning 

There is a saying that goes: If you do what you love, you'll never work a day in your life. It is probably impossible to enjoy cramming boring notes into your head, but what you can do to make it a little easier is to try to truly understand the lesson concepts and challenge yourself. If you can grasp the concepts and learn something new every day, that’s something you should be proud of.

TIP 2: Learn to accept each other’s differences.

Indeed, good grades are not achieved solely by acing the exams. Group projects are almost mandatory in every course and disagreements between group members are inevitable, be they in school or at work in the future. Teamwork plays a huge part in producing good results as a group – a fact that is personally tried and tested!

The key to harmony in your teams?

1) Know that everyone is different.
2) Accept it
3) Work towards a result everyone is pleased with.

You may not like your classmate’s idea or vice versa; chances are there might be a better idea out there waiting for your group to discover!

TIP 3: Rid the procrastination! 

One thing all students deal with is deadlines. Some can be dated months away or at the end of the week. The first step to better time management would be to eliminate procrastination. Getting started on a project early means no harm.  Finishing it earlier also means more free time!

TIP 4: Need help? Get help! 

Undeniably, we all have our strengths and weaknesses. One may be doing superb at a particular module but terribly in another. No big deal, just seek help from your lecturers or tutors once you have doubts. Do not let your doubts snowball for you may end up pretty confused.

If you do not feel comfortable approaching your lecturer, give your classmate a little nudge and ask for help. As the saying goes, “When one teaches, two learn.”

TIP 5: Spend a little time getting to know your friends better

School life should not just be about “Hi” and “Bye” and doing group projects. Spend some time getting to know your classmates better, and having lunch with them, and listening to them. You may find some areas of mutual interest, and by building bonds, you can also help each other out in times of need.

TIP 6: Getting sufficient sleep is the way to go!

A good night’s rest is a lot more important than it seems. Many of us stay up till late at night to complete last minute homework, resulting in us walking to class groggily the next morning. We then sleep through the boring lectures. Not only do we pay less attention to the lessons, our health deteriorates as well. The absolute nightmare would be to fall ill during the examination period. So rest well every night, I know you’d want to.

TIP 7: Stressed? Take a breather

Our stress level increases as the assignments pile up. Eliminate stress and you will find yourself studying with ease. Everyone has different ways to release stress. Google “stress management tips” and find one to suit your special self, be it catching a drama show every day or  taking a good ole’ shower.

TIP 8: Work hard, play hard

Cliché we know. The danger in following this piece of advice is that sometimes we tend to overdo it and play a little too hard. Discipline yourself by setting your work goals first, and your play goals as a reward.

For example, if you managed to commit to 3 hours of studying each morning, then you can take the afternoon off to spend time with friends. Sounds good?

TIP 9: Learn about yourself and learn a lot better

Find out what your learning style is – visual, auditory or kinaesthetic (tactile). If you are a visual learner like myself, tables and mind maps do wonders for you. Even if you do not fit under the given categories of the different learning styles, fret not. Just find a method you are comfortable with and that may increase productivity.

Though there is no guarantee these tips will work like a charm but if you don’t try, you will never know.

Here’s to a better semester!

By Germaine Leow, PFP

Alongside her interests in writing and photography, Germaine aims to provide the best campus updates during her 4 years in NYP. With a Mass Media Management Diploma waiting for her at the end of her polytechnic journey, she promised herself to never forget the importance of hard work, for God gives the hardest battles to his strongest soldiers.

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