CCP- Senioritis

First of all, I changed my site tagline from “high school senior” to “college freshman”. !!!! So if you’re reading this in your email then head on over to the actual website and check it out! (It’s the little things that make me happy.)


sen·ior·i·tis
ˌsēnyəˈrīdəs/
noun

humorous
 1. A supposed affliction of students in their final year of high school or college, characterized by a decline in motivation or performance.

2. A crippling disease that strikes high school seniors. Symptoms include: laziness, an over-excessive wearing of track pants, old athletic shirts, sweatpants, athletic shorts, and sweatshirts. Also features a lack of studying, repeated absences, and a generally dismissive attitude. The only known cure is a phenomenon known as Graduation. -Urban Dictionary


 

Senioritis is real. Even for good students. And it is awful. However, I am convinced that something similar happens to everyone at the end of the school year. The difference here (I am sure that is is worse for college seniors) is that seniors are at the end of something. They don’t have next year to come back to. They have something new coming, huge changes, they get to/have to leave. And that’s hard for most people. They have been working HARD for the past 4 years to get into “that” college or get “that” job, and now that they are accepted to “that” college. Do the last few months of senior year even matter?? It is hard to find motivation to finish out the school year when it has hardly any impact on their future plans. Cue the Pinterest and Instagram..


 

And then once we realize the quotes aren’t really helping we decide to open our books to study.

HA actually that’s not how it works.

Once we finally close that Pinterest app, we probably go and annoy our friends/family or whatever unfortunate soul happens to be around us by complaining about all of the work we have to do. Once they banish us from their presence, this is where the tears come in. Or the chocolate. OR BOTH.

If we ever finally sit down with our work, we’ll probably proceed to make at least 10 to-do lists about the things that we have to do and two separate count downs to the end of the year. Now, to outsiders, this may look like we are being productive and organized. Au contraire. This is the oldest trick in the book for a procrastinator, which all seniors seem to be.

Once we realize that there are no more to-do lists to be made *gasp* we’ll tackle that first (and probably easiest) item on our list. After finishing that, we’ll think “YOU ARE AN AMAZING PERSON. YOU DESERVE MORE CHOCOLATE AND A NICE LOOONNG BREAK FROM THE WORK THAT YOU JUST CONQUERED.” When, in reality, we just set out our notes and made our desk look pretty and took a picture of it all.

Okay, okay this may (or may not) be an exaggeration of the events that actually take place during one’s senior year. But now that I have lived through this (that makes it sound like the worst thing ever, which I’m sure it’s not:D) I have a few tips to give soon-to-be seniors.

  1. Get the “Forest” app for studying. It works wonders. You basically set a timer for how long you want to study. If you close out of the app, you get a dead tree. But if you stay in the app for the entire time, you get a healthy tree added to your forest. They also have white rain sounds (city, rainforest, etc.) for you to use. *Tip- don’t answer phone calls because it will kill your tree:D* You can also set a “break timer” so that you can get in that Pinterest time in order that you don’t go crazy. This was the biggest way for me to stay focused during finals week.
  2. Take study breaks to exercise or eat (good food). Don’t try to eat while studying. You’ll just get distracted, trust me.
  3. When you’re hard core studying, don’t listen to music that you could sing along with. Keep the throw-back songs (:D) for when you’re just copying notes or making flashcards. Pandora has study music stations. I’m sure youtube and Spotify do as well. Or use a white-noise app. (OR THE FOREST APP). My favorite way to study though is with The Strive Studies on YouTube. Go check her out,. It’s amazing how helpful it can be to “study with another person”.
  4. Enjoy life. You only get high school senior year once. Go to homecoming and prom. Go see your last sports games. Hang out with friends and do absolutely nothing or go out for a fancy-ish dinner on Saturday night. Eat pizza. Wear sweatpants to school. This is your last year.
  5. But do say no to some fun things. If you know that you have a big test the next day, don’t go out with friends that particular night/don’t watch the newest episode of Grey’s Anatomy.

Everyone is going to find ways that work for them. But you have to work to find those ways. My biggest tip for any student is this: TREAT EVERY TEST OR HOMEWORK ASSIGNMENT LIKE IT MATTERS TO YOUR FINAL GRADE. Because it really does. The first test at the beginning of the semester will set the tone for the rest of the class. If you do well on it, you’ll give yourself a cushion for when the material becomes harder. Start each semester with a good work ethic, and you’ll do fine. But don’t slack just because the material is easy now, because (especially for you CCP students) it will get 10x harder within the next week. Trust me.

Okay, longer post than normal, but those are some of my thoughts on senioritis. It can be a challenging time for most people, it definitely was for me. Please, please, please don’t beat yourself up about it. This goes for you straight-A students. Don’t feel like you’re a failure for not wanting to do the work anymore. But even if you don’t want to do it, do it anyway.

The last few months of senior year still matter. Your college gets to see your final transcript.  Show them that you are the student they think you are. Work hard, and then enjoy your summer. Time does pass. Before you know it, you’ll be graduated and at college. Don’t waste senior year complaining about it. Enjoy it.

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Distinguished Honors Program- Part 1

Hi all:)

Last weekend I made the trip with my momma to Albion College in Michigan. I went up there to compete in their Distinguished Honors Program (DSP). You can read more about it by following the link, but basically I was invited up there to present on a topic of my choosing for 15 minutes in front of a couple faculty members. The faculty then had 15 minutes to ask me questions about my presentation, why I chose the topic I did, and other questions about me personally (present and future plans).

I chose to present on SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome). I talked about the historical significance of SIDS, the official definition, common factors and precautions, first responders, how it affects parents, and why I chose to present on this.

I was SO nervous. I was sick to my stomach and dizzy and had a dry mouth leading up to my presentation, but I had to sit through several sessions and an informal interview before I could present. It was a long day of waiting:)

When I first got invited to participate, I absolutely did not want to do it. I didn’t want to speak in front of professors and I didn’t want to take that much time to prepare for it. I am glad that I did it though. I had so much fun that day during the other sessions and especially during my presentation.

I was competing for a full tuition scholarship. Sadly, I just found out today that I didn’t win the scholarship, but I did receive a money voucher called an “experience voucher” that I can use on studying abroad, conferences, and other Albion related expenses that aren’t necessarily a college expense. I wish that I had won, but it’s okay, I had fun doing it and that day was important.

I have more to say, but I decided to break it up into three different posts. SO, I’ll talk more about those sessions that I went to later this week! Happy Monday, friends:)

 

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CCP- Don’t Underestimate

Hello to all my CCPers out there.

Well, this is my 2nd week of school, already complete! Already, this semester is harder and busier than last semester! I’ll get right to the point: please, please, please DO NOT underestimate how much work you will have taking college courses. For me, last semester was fairly easy. Granted, I did have some moments that I melted into a sad little puddle, but the work load was only slightly heavy.

But this semester?? No way. I was lulled into a false sense of security going into Spring semester. (Am I saying ‘semester way too much? :D)

This term, 3/7 of classes don’t have homework, just exams over a ton of information every several weeks. The rest have weekly homework submissions, which means they are in depth and require a bit of research. The classes without homework are actually hard because of that because it is up to me to keep up with studying even though I don’t have anything to really study for yet.

Now, I am not complaining at all because I actually do love the workload that I have right now. But I want to warn those of you who aren’t mentally prepared for this! Remember, these final grades that you get never go away. These are the grades that colleges, med schools, law schools, etc. will see when you apply to them. So be prepared to be swamped.

Going along with that…don’t overburden yourself with extracurricular things. Choose the activities that you are truly interested in.

In my case, I have a volunteer position (almost), I have an academic activity, and a physical activity as my primary things to put on that resume, among other small things.

I am going to start volunteering soon at a hospital near my town, I participate in Model UN with my college, and I take horse lessons. Along with music and the occasional run. That is just something to think about when you are deciding what ‘extras’ to do. Think about what you are interested in and then think how you can get involved in good ‘college resume type’ activities. But again, colleges are always looking for unique people with unique experiences so don’t try to shove yourself into a box just for college.

And my last tip for today: find a good study space. … outside of school or your house. At least for me, I can study at home or at school, but I am constantly distracted. When I’m at home I ‘have to go clean something or pay attention to the dog’. When I am at school ‘I really should be getting home before it gets dark, and I have to drive. Voila! in comes the hospital cafeteria:) My favorite study space is my town’s hospital café. For several reasons: the food (lol), the setting, and the pace. {Uhoh this sounds like a 3 point expository paragraph!!} Anyway, cheap, super yummy food. Ginormous windows with lots of natural light. And it is noisy but not that noisy, and it’s in a hospital!

My choice of words in that last paragraph weren’t the best, but you get my point. Find somewhere that you can really concentrate, and that you feel very comfortable to put in the long hours of studying.

So now that I am out of excuses…I had better get to my studying.

WIN_20160121_16_21_31_Pro

Well, off I go:)

 

 

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Girl’s Weekend

Sorry that I missed my post last week! Nothing too crazy happened, so you didn’t miss much:)

This past weekend we had our ‘Girl’s Weekend’. We–meaning Kaitlyn, Katy, another friend, and I– do these occasionally, especially now that we don’t go to the same school. What do we do?? We eat junk, play games, and watch movies. I have a few ‘junk food’ recipes for you and some fun pictures:)

We started the weekend off by going to ‘our’ school’s Harvest Party. Then we went home and kind of just crashed. The next day, I headed over to my school for a Tutor Fest. I got some help in stats and talked to my history teacher for about 21/2 hours about lots of different things but with the focus on my big research assignment. I finally decided that I am going to do a paper on five things we don’t really know about the Constitution. It sounds interesting so we will see where that goes.

While I was gone, Katy and Kaitlyn and Hannah went shopping for our food. (By the way, Saturday was rainy and cold! Perfect day for this.)

When I got home, we started making food. First we made caramel grapes.

grapeI thought they would be SO GROSS, but they aren’t!

First, wash your grapes and dry. 

Next, chop up peanuts.

Then, melt your caramel.

Finally, stick each grape with a toothpick, dip each grape halfway in caramel, and roll in the peanuts.

Voila!

Then we made Soda Cracker Candy.

unnamed

First, line a baking sheet (with foil and spray it) with a single layer of saltine crackers.

Second, partially melt 2 cubed sticks of butter in a saucepan.

Next, before it is all melted, add 1 cup brown sugar. Stir constantly. When it comes to a boil, let boil for 2-3 minutes.

Next, when finished boiling, pour it over the crackers and spread evenly.

Then, take the foil off of the pan, and set it outside (if cold enough) or in the freezer to harden.

Once hardened, break the candy up into pieces.

(You can also spread chocolate on the cracker before the butter mixture. Even better!)

Enjoy!

 

The last thing that we made was Koolaid Meringues.

I just had to catch our first expressions with a picture.

"It tastes like playdoh."

“It tastes like playdoh.”

I was the only one who was disgusted by these:)

I was the only one who was disgusted by these:)

Here is what you do…

(Preheat oven to 250 degrees F.)

First, put four egg whites into a bowl and beat them until they are frothy.

Second, slowly add 1 cup of sugar.

Once mixed, add 1 tsp of cream of tarter.

Then, beat the mixture until stiff–like for a lemon meringue pie. We had to add a little bit more cream of tarter to get the meringue to stiffen. It will take awhile though!

Next, split your mixture into as many bowls as flavors that you want.

Add 1 tsp of each Koolaid flavoring and stir.

Line a baking sheet with foil and spray it.

Place spoonfuls of the mixture about an inch apart. (I am just guessing here…not really sure.) The smaller the better.

Bake for 40-45 minutes or until the tops are golden brown.

Eat! (Wayy to sweet and sugary for me, so I can’t say ‘enjoy’  :D)

 

We watched some movies as well–Pirates of the Caribbean and Harry Potter and My Big Fat Greek Wedding.  Correction–they watched the movies. I basically stayed in my room and watched Castle. 🙂

And so ends our weekend. It is back to school today. I have a guidance appointment today to schedule my classes for next semester. Yay!! Can’t believe that I have almost made it to midterms of my first year at ‘college’.

Have a wonderful week!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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College Credit Plus: What do I do first?! Part 1

Hi there.

I just finished my online Latin class and now I need to take a brief break from studying so I decided to do a post! It is a beautiful day here, a little bit on the warm side. but it even started to rain…just a little bit…which made it even more beautiful.

So when I started school last week, I got all of these papers and syllabi and resources and websites just thrown at me. I had no idea how to organize them.

Part 1 of ‘What do I do first?! (That is how I felt! Maybe a little bit more panicked) will be all about organizing your papers on the first day. Part 2 will be about scheduling your day–something that I just recently figured out.

Let’s get started!

I Pinterested and Googled ‘How to get organized for college’ (or something like that) many, many times. I found some great ideas and ultimately complied my own system.

What I bought:

  • Large binder
  • Binder Folder for each class
  • Loose leaf paper
  • A notebook for each class
  • pens
  • pencils
  • highlighters
  • pencil pouch
  • white out
  • planner

Ok. So what did I do with all of that?

  1. I labeled each folder for each of my classes and put them in my binder. I liked the idea of having one large binder rather than 6 regular binders because I think that it is easier to carry around.
  2. I then labeled each notebook for each of my classes. I tried to color coordinate each subject. For example, for my Latin class, I used my purple notebook and my purple folder.
  3. Next, I printed out my schedule and put it on the inside of my binder so that I could access it very quickly.
  4. I took my loose notebook paper and put it in my binder behind the folders. I use the loose paper to take notes during class and then transfer the notes over to my class notebook after class. That way I am reviewing the material by writing it several times.
  5. Put all of your pens pencils, white out, highlighter, etc. into your pencil pouch to keep in your back pack.
  6. My planner. I love this part! Just make sure that you have one! It is essential. Get one that has a calendar view as well as a weekly view.

Now that you are ready for the first day of school, what do you do after you have had your first classes?

  1. Gather all of your syllabi into one spot. I highlight the ‘important info’ (Professor’s name/office hours, class title, class time). Usually, the professor will go over the syllabus on your first day. Take the opportunity to highlight important features in the class (homework is always due on this day OR always staple your homework in this corner). Make notes if you have questions and stay after class to ask your professor.
  2. Now that you have your syllabi, turn to the page that shows you all of the due dates. Choose a color pen for each class and start filling in all of your due dates on the calendar view of your planner. For example, my Latin class has a purple notebook and folder so I chose to use purple pen when writing in my assignments.
  3. I underlined each type of assignment differently. For regular homework, I didn’t underline. Quizzes: regular underline. Special assignments (research, etc.): squiggly underline. Exams: put a box around it. Every time I finish something, I cross it off.

That is what I did my first day of school. I felt much better because I had all of my due dates in one spot and don’t have to go searching through multiple papers to find out when something was due. Feel free to change anything to make it easier for you.

Part 2 will focus on scheduling individual days so that you get everything done on time. I hope that wasn’t too confusing:/

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College Credit Plus: Intro

Before I get into the actual post, I promised you the answer to this question: Where is the Bob Evans HQ located? The answer: Rio Grande, Ohio. Now, you might be saying, ‘Ok…so what?’ (This is from my history teacher.) What I thought was funny about this was that Rio Grande, Ohio is pronounced RY-oh GRAND, Ohio. :/ Why couldn’t we have just kept it REE-oh GRAND-ay, I ask you?


Since I am now a CCP student–College Credit Plus–I thought that I would start putting up CCP advice posts. How to Study and get organized and transition to the college setting, etc.

I just wanted to start off with this new ‘line of posts’ by introducing CCP for anyone who doesn’t really know what it is.

Here is a great link to check out. It has a ton of resources about CCP.

CCP, in short, is a way for any student from grades 7-12 to take college courses to earn college and high school credit. They just added the 7th and 8th grade concept this year, and I am not clear on how that works. I just know that it is a possibility.

Any public university/college in the state of Ohio is now legally obligated to take part in the CCP. This includes accepting CCP students while they are in high school and accepting their credits when they apply to college.

In some cases, you are able to earn an associate degree along with your high school diploma. Most people I talk to however come within a few credits of receiving their associate degree. I think you can get around this by taking a few summer courses. I need to talk to my guidance counselor about that. I really want to get that associate degree. But if it doesn’t work out, that’s ok too. I still will have gotten that many courses out of the way for free before going to college.

That brings me to my next point. CCP is free to any public school student. Home schooled students have to pay for it themselves. At my institution, home school students are given a few classes free, but only until funds run out. While I think this is highly unfair, it is important to know.

CCP students receive grades from their courses that go on their high school transcript as well as their college transcript. Yes, CCP-ers get a college transcript. You take a risk when enrolling in CCP because you CANNOT ERASE A COLLEGE TRANSCRIPT. Or so says my guidance counselor. And I believe him:) Whatever grades you get will show up when applying to colleges for the rest of your life so you better be ready to earn those good grades.

You don’t just have to go to a college campus to take part in CCP. You can take online college courses, or even take classes at your high school if your high school has partnered with a college.

That is just a little bit of CCP. Most of this information is due to my experience, so don’t just take my word for it. If you are interested in CCP, talk to your HS guidance counselor to learn about your high school’s policies.

I have plenty more posts with specific advice coming soon so stay tuned.

 

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