For me, school started on wednesday. I had three classes and there was a ton of people on campus. The first day is always like that, though. All of the first year students are exploring the campus, trying to find their classes, and making new friends. I'm a third year student but I still did a lot of walking around campus. I found some of my friends who are in their first year of university so I hung out with them a lot and answered some of the questions that they still had about university. I also got my agenda that the students association gives out every year and I had to find some of my classrooms because I had only found one ahead of time. It was a fun day!
I have decided to write a list of goals for this school year. After having finished half of my undergraduate program, I now know a lot more about the way that I learn so there are changes that I want to make in order to learn in the best way possible for me. There are also some fun changes that I want to make to make my university experience even more enjoyable. I have split this list of goals into two categories: Learning and Fun.
-Keep up with class readings: This is a very important goal. I don't like having to catch up on pages and pages of readings so I want to keep up with the readings and really understand what we are covering in class. So far, I'm doing pretty good. I read the pages that I had to read for my 16th and 17th century women's writing class last night and I made some summary notes this morning in order to really understand and remember what I read. I felt so prepared for my class this afternoon! This brings me to my second goal...
-Make summary and/or reflection notes after each reading: If I make my own notes right after reading the texts or pages, I will remember the information better and understand what I read. This will also help me become better at summarizing what I read (I sometimes have trouble with this and end up writing several sentences when all I needed was one).
-Use visual ways of learning: I am a visual learner so just listening to a lecture or just reading information doesn't always help me learn best and remember the information. Videos, images, tables, key words, timelines, etc. are often easy for me to remember information from and help me understand. Sometimes, I just need the information broken down to the main points. I want to use these visual ways of learning to help me understand what I learn in class and to help me remember. I plan on making some visual notes after each class if my class notes are not good enough.
-Finish assignments early: I will admit, I procrastinate and it's not fun! I want to finish assignments early this year so that I am less stressed out and I have time to make them the best that I possibly can.
-Participate in class more: I am very quiet in class. I am also shy and I worry that what I say won't be good enough. I want to get over this and participate more in class (especially since I have to if I want participation marks that are required in some classes).
-Practice French outside of school: Along with my specialization in English Literature, I'm working on a minor in French. I started learning French when I was 4 years old and my parents had entered me in French Immersion (French Immersion is where you have class in both English and French) in Junior Kindergarten. I stayed in French Immersion all the way to the end of high school and then wanted to continue studying French so I decided to minor in it. I love French! Speaking it is so fun! I want to speak French outside of school more so I want to have conversations in French with my younger brother because he knows French too. I also want to read more French books, watch more French TV shows and movies, and listen to more French music in order to practice French reading and understanding.
-Dress up more for school: I have so many interesting accessories but I hardly wear them because I'm a bit afraid of dressing in a way that stands out more. I want to break out of my comfort zone when it comes to clothes and just wear what I want to wear without worrying about it. I have already started doing this and I am very proud of myself. On the first day of school, some of the things that I wore were a black wrap, red sneakers, and my 1920s style cloche chapeau. Today, I wore a magenta long sleeved shirt, black ruffle scarf, blue sneakers, colourful socks with zig zags on them that show because I rolled up my black skinny jeans a bit, and I wore my hair down and put in a few different colours of hair clips.
-Make new friends: This is hard when you're an off campus student because you aren't at the university as much as people who live in residence. I want to chat with people in my classes and get to know them more and maybe even become friends! I might even join a club which will help with friend making!
-Use the gym and swimming pool: This sounds crazy but I am in my third year of university and I haven't even used my student card to go to the gym or pool yet! I really want to use them this year because there is a fee in our tuition which pays for us to be able to use them so I might as well make use of it. Plus, it will be fun and one of my friends wants to use the pool too so maybe I'll go with her!
Here's hoping that this year is the best school year yet!