Hey Guys, I hope we had a beautiful summer/third term break.
A new academic year starts today for many of us and I thought to cheer you on for the year ahead. I attended a boarding house back in high/secondary school and the emotions were different for me for every school year. I’m pretty sure those of you in boarding schools can almost relate to this. In JSS1, (the current 7th grade), I recall being so excited about finally leaving the house, no more nannies/helps/aunties/mummy/daddy to police my every move. The joys of having tons of provisions and pocket monies. My sisters had prepared my mind for the punishments and horrors of boarding houses in Nigeria and also old tricks to get out of trouble, so I was ready. As the years progressed, the emotions ranged from excitement to trepidation, to anxiety then in my senior years; glee, happiness, euphoria and then sadness when came to an end.
A couple of things however stayed true throughout my high school and even later as an undergrad. I will like to share those tips so that it helps you deal better with the school year.
- Setting Goals: Make a list of your plans and goals. I had always been an A student and my parents expected me to keep up with the pace in secondary school, this automatically meant I had to study. Early enough, I reached a compromise with them which was to remain in the top three in any class so it made my goal a lot more flexible-Remaining top three in class- without putting too much pressure on me. What this did was to help me focus on school and my studies while having enough play time. Initially, I studied because that was expected of me but much later I discovered that I actually enjoyed reading. I found my strength; reading, being imaginative, writing, story telling. There are some people who have their strengths in other areas outside of academics eg sports with almost no passion for academics. Setting goals will be needed to excel both within and outside the classroom. The goal could be to be a better athlete while maintaining B’s or C’s. It could be to represent your school at a debating competition. It could be to become an all-round high flying student. Whatever the goal is, decide to constantly improve on it while not overlooking your academics. I know reading can be a chore sometimes, see it as something that has to be done for your good and put some extra effort to it. Try a new approach this year.
- Get Involved: There are a bunch of co-curricular activities you can get involved in. Literary and Debating society, Drama club, Food and Nutrition club, Drama club. Pick one, pick many, pick something that fascinates you and learn something new. Interestingly, a lot of these co-curricular activities will help you identify where your strengths lie and how you can do better. Some of which become highly relevant later in life. If you are shy and quite introverted, getting involved is a sure way to get over being shy and making friends. If you are boisterous and always the star of the show, working with other people will teach you how to better be a team player.
Talk to your teachers and classmates: Stay curious. A lot of the times, we tend to shy away from being asked questions or talking to our teachers. It might help to know that no-one has all the answers. This academic year, set out to ask at least one question to your teacher on any topic you chose to or talk to someone in your class you typically would not relate with. Asking questions does a number of things to you: it teaches you to think things through logically, it makes you concentrate lot better especially in areas your teacher might have and it helps you learn something new from the other party.
- Stay Positive: Hey, It’s just another school year. This time around the plan is to win. So, stay positive while winning.
Lots of Love,