Leaping into Second Semester

Shrutika Ezhil, Staff Writer

   A couple of weeks into the second semester, a new chapter (quite literally) for the new(ish) year commences. Are you ready for it?

   If there’s one thing we grasped from 2020, it’s to learn from the past in order to change the future. COVID-19 mirrored the pandemic of influenza back in 1918, the BLM movement took on social injustice the same way as the civil rights movement, and politics….well politics has always been the same. Either way, students employed the same approach towards the second semester: learn from the first semester. Audrey Sanders (9) gained a valuable high school lesson last semester, “I shouldn’t hesitate to go to office hours or email my teacher. I kept worrying that I’m bothering them, but the reality is – it’s their job to help their students.” Throughout high school, asking for guidance and reaching out to teachers is the best thing to keep in mind, especially this year. Take advantage of office hours and the resources that several teachers offer. Kimberly Crist (10) broke down the things she acquired into two categories: “Things I will keep using: flashcards. They’ve gotten me through every vocab test so far. Things I have to stop doing: I really have to work on not daydreaming during certain classes.” It’s great to break down the things that you will keep moving forward and change, as it makes it clear as to what and why you’ll be changing certain habits. It’s been hard trying to stay focused with online classes, so finding a way to get rid of those distractions is definitely a goal that many of us may share.

   With lessons learned from the first semester, it’s great to start implementing clear goals. Sanders and Crist share the same goal of keeping their grades up and making sure that they’re paying attention in class. Shreya Reddi (11) shared that her goal focused more on time management: “I realized how much time I would waste every day when I looked up my screen time. The numbers were very scary.” In order to keep herself from going on her phone for too long, she deletes certain apps and sets restrictions. Reddi said, “It was a bit difficult at first because I’d naturally go onto my phone looking for an app, like Tiktok, to give myself a break. When I realized I didn’t have the app, I was pretty much forced to do my work. In the end, I finished my work faster, which was not only very satisfying but healthier since I got more sleep.” It’s been hard trying to stay focused with online classes, so finding a way to get rid of those distractions is definitely a goal that many of us may share. 

   Outside of school, Crist, Sanders, and Reddi all made goals of their own. For Crist, she wanted to upgrade her quarantine fashion this semester: “Quarantine fashion is very much a thing, and while that means wearing pajamas all day for some people, for me it means finally letting go of the few reservations I have about dressing however I want. I hope to start shifting my wardrobe to more historical fashion, and yes, that includes capes.” Sanders made a very simple, yet much needed, goal to worry less: “The world is so crazy right now, and the last thing I need is to be bugged by stuff that hasn’t happened yet or happened a long time ago.”  Despite the “crazy” world, many students are taking initiative by implementing new goals for the second semester, both for school and outside of it, and pursuing clear steps to achieve them.