Starting the School Year Off Right!

Writer: Ignacio

Editor: Jessica

Visuals: Ethan

Hey Bearcats! Once again, the school year has come back around, and BT has prepared tips to help you start your school year with a bang! 

Whether you’re a returning student, with the nostalgia for the energy, jitters, and excitement of seeing everyone after a long summer, or this is your first or second year and haven’t fully experienced that Bearcat energy, there’s no denying that online school is a rough and demoralizing way to start the school year. But with the hopes of returning back to campus shining brighter than ever, we students just have to push through these last months of online learning; and here are 5 ways to make it a little bit easier.

#1. Socialize

Now, this tip by no means encourages ignoring quarantine or other COVID-19 protocols, but rather makes sure you’re still getting the time that you need with others. Whether that’s staying unmuted and keeping your camera on in breakout rooms, or study calls with your friends to prepare for any upcoming assessments, remember to stay in touch and have some fun, Netflix party, Jackbox and Minecraft are so great ways to do so. Also, don’t forget to spend quality time with family and if you have family overseas try working something out with them, maybe contacting them once a week when your schedules work out.

#2. Be understanding

Everyone is struggling through the same pandemic as you are, so keep this in mind when talking to your teachers and family. With the constant COVID-19 restrictions and the all-too-familiar ECQ that seemingly reemerges every time the situation improves, all of us have had our fair share of arduous moments. So if you’re patient and understanding with your teacher, they’ll do the same with you. There’s an expectation to be productive at all times during zoom, but if you really want to make the most out of the situation it’s important to understand yourself and your needs, use the 15m breaks within classes to disconnect from the screen and do something else, by understanding your needs, you’ll be able to stay motivated during these trying times.

#3. Keep things tidy

An organized desk and notes are your sword and shield during Zoom classes. Stay equipped by tidying up after yourself and keeping notes organized with dates, colors, and titles. Here at BT, we also recommend you limit your desk stationery to a manageable amount and use an efficient color code system in order to keep your notes organized, whether done by subject, unit, or day. The better you manage your materials, the easier it will be to prepare for the inevitable end-of-year exams. Following these tips will pay off in the long run.

#4. Interact with the ISM community 

Get involved! Club Expo is tomorrow, August 25, and a great way to keep focused and healthy is to interact and work on something larger than yourself. With the myriad of clubs, ISM has to offer, take up the opportunity to be a part of them! Whether it’s joining the Battle of the Bands council and helping to organize one of the most anticipated events of the school year, or joining the EPIC club and interacting with local Filipino communities, getting involved, and being a part of the Bearcat family is a must-do this school year.

#5. Make your bed

Whether we can see it from the corner of your Zoom camera or not, making your bed ensures that you start your day off the right way. As Admiral William McRaven once said, “If you make your bed every morning, you will have accomplished the first task of the day”; that task will then turn into another and another, and by the end of the day, you’ll have completed a multitude of tasks. And the best part is, even if you don’t, you’ll end your day with the reminder that no matter how tough or hard it was, your bed is ready-made and waiting for you.

By following these tips, you can ensure a successful start to the second year of online school — while still taking care of your social and mental health and maintaining a good academic and social balance— so keep your heads up Bearcats! BT wishes you the best this school year and will continue to provide you with entertaining content on the weekly. Stay safe!