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Posts Tagged homework

Spring Break 2011

ashley-85On televisions shows and movies, college kids all seem to go to Cancun or some other tourist beach for spring break. As I counted the days (and then hours) until my second spring break, going to the beach never crossed my mind.

Last year, I went home and told myself I was going to relax and do my homework and just enjoy the time off, little did I know then that I wouldn’t even have time to sit and relax. Being away at college means that when I come home everyone (and their mother normally) wants to see me. There is so much to do and so many people to see that I kept telling myself I needed more hours in the day!

This year, I was much more wise about my spring break plans. Living in the same space as an 8 month old, there is never time to relax. While I still did not touch an ounce of homework, I did volunteer at Head Start and it was an awesome experience! Being home was my favorite part, as it always is. And with the exception to Saint Louis experiencing a whole years worth of weather in 10 short days, snow and ice in the same week as a wonderful sunny 85 degrees always makes things interesting, Spring break was a nice break from the everyday stress of school. And maybe one year I will do the whole beach thing for spring break, but for now, there is no place like home.

If Time is Money, I’m SO Broke

jenny-85Time just seems to run away from me. There are never enough hours in a day to do the things I want to do. Can’t take a nap. Can’t go to the movies. Can’t go read a book for leisure because I’ll definitely end up reading it instead of the books I need for class. And then I can’t do the things that I need to do. Like study for that exam that’s coming up. Finish my homework. Can’t finish the insane amount of reading I have for my writing class. Time-management? Not my forte. It’s harder than I thought it’d be.

You’d think that you would have more time in college. Classes don’t start till nine or ten. Some classes don’t meet every day. You probably thought, “YES! Freedom!” Nope. Not at all. Between classes, lunch lines, laundry, coursework, clubs and sleep, me-time is cut down severely.

One thing I do is keep a planner. In this age, phones seem to have this application too, so no excuses. I first list the things that are due. For example, papers for writing class or problem sets for my science courses. Then I split them up into parts I can take on day by day. Do these things by Tuesday and then move on to the next part on Wednesday. Don’t take on everything on one day. Trust me. Papers don’t turn out too well when you’re writing while sleep-deprived.

Once things pile up, they can start to affect your grades. So, you may have to drop something, whether it be reading manga, watching Glee or gelling your hair Super-Saiyan style. Yes, all of these things are very important. But grades are more so. I, for one, realized that Korean dramas took up A LOT of my time. I would wait for them to air and then check if anyone put in subtitles. Then I would procrastinate too often to watch the shows. I understand how hard it is to quit cold turkey. But you gotta do what you gotta do!

You don’t come to college to socialize or play, so if it really comes down to it, you can be a hermit in your room for a few days and study or catch-up with classes. Your friends will understand. The disappearing act is only for a while. If they don’t, they might have a few attachment issues. (Ahaha.)

But mom…I don’t want to do my homework yet!

jordan-85Hey everyone, I’m sorry for the delay between posts. I have been bombarded by never-ending essays, which brings me to what I am going to talk about today, time management!

Time management is crucial in all schooling, especially college. In high school I didn’t ever have to study extremely hard, like never hours on end, but college has definitely been a wake up call. Learn to manage your time wisely right away, no matter what age you are, because it will benefit you more than you can imagine.

The beginning of my first semester of college was sort of a crash course on time management, if you will. I learned early on that if I didn’t structure my day and allot sufficient time for studying and schoolwork, things wouldn’t be good. My first calculus test grade wasn’t good, and it was because of my lack of time management skills. Since then, I have improved greatly in managing my time wisely, but definitely still have some work to do.

I have a couple tips for you to help you manage your time the best you possibly can.  First off, make sure you place high importance on homework and studying. It may sound cliché, but focusing on homework and studying first before doing other things will be highly beneficial to you and your school performance.

My other piece of advice is that you must make sure not to rush through your homework and studies! I know it is tempting to scribble down the last few answers to your English homework, even if they are wrong, because your favorite television show is about to come on. Skimming over the pages of your textbook without actually reading them is also something most students do; I know I have. There will be time to watch TV and do whatever else it is you want to do, but getting schoolwork done first is a must. I know it might not be fun right now, but you will thank me one day!

Study, Nap, or Call of Duty? Decisions.

sophia-85Class. Nap. Library. Class. Class. Homework. Call of Duty. Sleep.

Yeah, that’s pretty much my week in a nutshell. Time management in college is extremely different than it was in high school. There is way more independence and prioritizing.

In high school, your day is scheduled for you. You have class and breaks are placed between them for you.

College is trickier. Your classes vary. I have a class at 6 p.m. on Monday and classes scattered throughout the day on Tuesday and Thursday. During the breaks, it’s up to me to decide where I’m going to go or what I’m going to do.

I usually schedule my breaks between classes in the library. I am able to finish all my work throughout my school day, leaving the time after school free for me to do other non-school related tasks.

There is a big difference in understanding what is more important to you, going out or studying. Everything revolves around your decision and what you feel like doing. Your time is truly under your control, which makes college a great place to grow and realize your goals.

One of the tips that has helped me the most is basically writing out my schedule every week. What I need to do, what classes I need to take, what meetings I have, and other important dates.

It helps me to have a visual of all my tasks so I can prioritize myself and realize that I cannot just waste my time.

It also helps me to have a friend help motivate me. If I need to study, I’ll let a friend know and they remind me or ask me if I’ve studied. It surprisingly helps.

One of the hardest aspects of college to deal with is being lost sometimes. You don’t even know where to start with time management, but thankfully there are people to help.

Academic advising allows me to talk to a professional and have them give me advice in what direction I should head in.

College is a whole lifestyle and time management might be the most dramatic change for me.

From my Dorm at USC

jordan-85Please enjoy my first video blog, talking about the college admission process, the new year and new classes, and showing what a typical college dorm/residence hall looks like.

Check it out here.

Flash Cards!

joseph-85Big Surprise: Finals time was stressful.  Couple that with the other assignments that have been looming at the end of the syllabus and everyone can tell you the time is overwhelming.  For a while though I thought I had it beat.  Every semester I get better at finishing assignments earlier.  This semester I was doing very well, albeit not talking to many people, and sitting in exhaustion at the circulation desk at my library job about to fall asleep.

I had thought long and hard about the phrase “Idle hands make sin;” about how in high school I had 7 classes and a great deal of other activities to engage in and I seemed to have so much more time.   I did recognize that at my high school there was almost no homework (and by oxy standards no homework at all.)  At oxy though, I serve on a couple committees, work, and volunteer with a few clubs.  Compared to high school I’m not doing anything, and I have very little free time to be spontaneous.  So I signed up for a fifth class hoping that my self-regulating academic capabilities could help me through.

They did, but since I can’t focus on work for more than 45 minutes to an hour without some irresistible compulsion to move or walk around, I ended up staying in the library until 5 in the morning quite often.  But my studying this semester was revolutionized, especially for Econ and German. I was saved by some advice from my German instructor. Two words: Flash Cards!   For just about forever I’ve been stubborn about flash cards.  When I was a reading mentor for younger students years ago, I was supposed to use flash cards to help the kids.  The kids never responded positively to them and I had grown a sort of dread and hatred myself towards what appeared to useless little pieces of paper that taunted the poor children who didn’t have parents that taught them to read when they were younger.  Reading books with them I always thought was much more effective.  Also flash cards just mean memorization, and I’ve never been good at that or found it particularly useful.

Anyway, don’t let biases keep you from doing something that can help you.  For me, it was the simple act of writing the information down onto the flash cards that I found so helpful.  It ended up making this an A- semester and made Christmas break all the more sweeter, until I got this flu that has lasted literally a week.  I should write a post about how much I get sick.  Thankfully, I’ve got this over the break, because it would have been a disaster during the school year.

Snowflakes, Christmas joy, and…Exams

shaun-85This term has whizzed by in such a blur that I can hardly believe that it’s already almost over! College life has become routine, but definitely a routine that I enjoy. I have met so many great people, been exposed to interesting classes and professors, balanced my homework with work-study, and learned to love my new dorm room. I feel very happy here.

But amidst the rare snowfalls and Christmas decorations, there is a tension so thick on campus that you could cut it with a knife: you guessed it, next week is the infamous Exam Week. It will be my first time taking college exams, and I am slightly nervous. W&L has a wonderful system where you can take your four exams in any of 11 time slots you choose, ranging from this coming Saturday to the following Friday. This has been so helpful as I have tried to plan my studying. Finally, next week will be an end to my microeconomics, calculus, Spanish literature, and American politics courses.

I’m looking forward to moving on to new classes, which I have already registered for. Next term I will be taking courses on natural disasters, global politics, Hispanic literature, and art history. In the spring, I will have an awesome opportunity with W&L’s four-week spring term, where I will take one course intensively for a month. In an attempt to get my lab science credit taken care of, I will be participating in a course called Volcanology, in which I will study volcanoes and spend a week in Flagstaff, Arizona exploring the San Diego mountain range. I’m so excited!

Also, I plan to be a part of W&L’s Greek Life here on campus, which 80% of students participate in. All term I have been meeting girls from all of the different sororities, and the first week in January formal rush begins! I really hope that I will find my place in one of the six sororities here on campus.

Good luck to all of you seniors waiting to hear back about early action and early decision, and Merry Christmas!

Halloween Madness

jeremy-85Happy Halloween!  Halloweenas Beunas! Joyeux Halloween! Frohes Halloween!

Hey CSO Family!

Now that I’ve covered the universal greeting of “Happy Halloween”, let’s talk.

As you’re heading to higher learning, the last thing you want to hear is a lecture.  A lecture about proper behavior and appropriate actions of being a college student.  You figure, I’m going to be 18 and that makes me an adult.  I’ll be away at college and only accountable to myself.

Wrong!

In high school, you were given your schedule and required to show up at all assigned classes.  In college, it’s a whole new world.  You need to be disciplined and have integrity to do as you need to do to make the grade.  No one will call your mother or your father to find out why you didn’t show up for classes.

That’s the TREAT of college life.  You get the opportunity to grow up and mature without parental control!  SWEET!

Here’s where things can derail…

PEER PRESSURE!

Oh, you thought it would be a thing of the past?  You thought is was over after high school and everyone you meet from now on would be just so intelligent that you wouldn’t encounter people who try to talk you into doing STUPID STUFF!  You don’t think you’ll meet people who have CRAZY on the brain everyday?

Trust me.  Just because they’re here on a college campus doesn’t mean they’re here to learn and do the right things.  That’s my TRICK part of the message for this blog on Halloween.

You will meet people who feel like they have to be daring and stay up for three or four nights straight without sleep because they can.  Avoid those people like the plague.

You will meet people who won’t study and do their required homework, don’t make those people your friend.  Steer clear of them.

You will meet people who make fun of other people because of their race, sexual orientation and anything else which says they’re different.  These individuals are to be avoided at all cost.

As you can see, college life is like Halloween: 24/7/365.  It’s up to you to control your behavior, your reactions to actions around you and how you present yourself to the world.  College is not something you put on like a costume and take it off when you’re done.  College is real world and your attire should not mask who you are, but reveal how great and decent you are.  

Summer 2010 went by way too fast

tereza-85Summer is over and I am now in my 2nd year at Augsburg College. My summer was pretty fun, but mostly relaxing. I mainly worked and spent time with my son Cristian. It was nice to have a break for a bit without the stress of homework (which I assume that most of you also enjoy).

So far my 2nd year is going pretty well. It makes me feel good to know that I already have one year done and behind me. This term most of the classes that I am taking require a lot of reading. I am a pretty slow reader so I always dread when I have to do a fairly large chunk of reading for my 4 classes.

What I have learned to help me out is to not sit down and try to read all 150 pages at once. From my experience and from what I have heard from my other classmates, if you try to do a large amount of reading in one sitting, towards the end, you are not able to pay as close attention as you were in the beginning. You may begin to get tired and bored, and it puts a strain on your eyes.

However, if you break it up into smaller sections and read for hour increments, you will not lose focus and will still be able to take in and retain the information. There have been many times where I will read a page (or few), then I stop and try and think back and realize that I have no idea what I just read. I then have to go back and re-read what I did not take in. This becomes very time consuming and at times irritating. This process is what works for me and as you go through college you will learn what works for you when it comes to getting your homework done and studying.