Refreshing for the new semester

Zaineh Saleh

Crimson Chronicle Editor

Winter break is officially over meaning the nightmare of a new semester is becoming a reality for every high school student. After a long, tedious first semester, many students, including myself, experienced burnout that affected our productivity and passion for learning.

While winter break helped cure most of the burnout, it would be a lie to say that I felt completely energized to start a new semester. In order to get over my negative feelings, I reflected upon my habits and watched endless YouTube videos and Tik Toks to effectively plan and refresh. I was able to come up with a productive plan, that helped me refresh.

Here are some tips to get over burnout and feel prepared for a new semester.

  1. Create a plan to stay organized

Now you might think this a very cliche tip and is something said in almost every video you come across. However, it truly makes a significant difference. Towards the end of the first semester, I became sloppy in terms of tracking what I need to do and highlighting important deadlines so the quality of my work inevitably decreased. Here is what you can do to stay organized:

  • Start using a physical or digital planner. I find planners to be helpful in reminding me what to do and keeping track of deadlines. I find it most efficient to use a mix of both my online and physical calendars. I try my best to update them daily either in the morning or at night, but don’t worry if you miss a couple of days try your best to be consistent! A few recommendations I have for online calendars are Notion, Google Calendar, Fantasy Calendar, Google Sheets.
  • Organize your Google drive. This might be time-consuming but will be incredibly helpful in the future. Create folders in your drive separating your documents by year, subject, or topic. The more niche the better as it will help you find them when you need them. What’s that essay I wrote in my freshman year? You’ll easily be able to access it. 

  • Digitalize your Notes. Carrying each notebook for every class you have is unrealistic especially when we have 8 classes in total. While I do try to alternate notebooks every day it’s inevitable that I forget a notebook when I might need it. A good way to store all your notes on your phone is by using the app CamScanner. It allows you to keep a digital copy of all your handwritten notes, so you can access them at any time!

2. Getting new stationary items

In back-to-school season, something that makes me excited to start school is purchasing new stationery and supplies. It personally makes me more productive and motivated to write notes and pay attention in class. While I won’t be repurchasing every item I own, buying a new pack of pens or even a notebook, can help lift your spirit and make you a little more excited!

3. Finishing school work at SCHOOL

This tip is incredibly important. While it’s unrealistic that you won’t have any work to do at home, try your best to finish anything you can at school. Make it a priority in each class to try and leave with the least amount of work possible. The more productivity you achieve in the day the more time it will give you to relax at home. As a student athlete myself, I try to implement this tip as I arrive home tired and late in the evening.

4. Pomodoro Study Method

The pomodoro study method is by far the best study method that helps me stay productive for a long period of time. The way it works you first set up a to do list, and set a timer for 25 minutes. After the 25 minutes you take a 5 minute break. You repeat this routine for 4 times before taking a 30 minute break. During this time I try my best to keep my phone away and delete any apps that might distract me.

2 thoughts on “Refreshing for the new semester

  1. As a student myself, I find planners very useful as it reminds me that I have things to do. Setting up schedules is also very helpful, along with checklists! I love that you included the Pomodoro study method, you’ve motivated me to try this out!

    Hoping to see more posts like this in the near future.

    1. Thank you, Sophie! I am glad you benefited from this story. I will definitely write more stories like this.

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