Now that essay deadlines are passing, you may have a bit of spare time on your hands so this is the perfect opportunity to try something new. Below are some of the things I want to try out before the year is up.
If you read my blogs regularly you will know I am a frozen pizza and instant noodle enthusiast. That is because I can’t cook and I feel like cooking requires too many ingredients, herbs and spices. I’m sure cooking can be made simple and I want to learn. Maybe I can even learn to make home-made pizza!
Some kind of sport
Back in the good old school days I was really sporty but once exams started taking over my life in the form of GCSE’s, A-Levels and uni I ran out of time to do sports. Tennis is a sport I have always wanted to have a go at but never got round to. I have a tennis racket that I bring to uni every year in the hope that I will find my passion for tennis. It has still never been taken out the packet.
Give it a Go
I always wanted to try give it a go and do something I’ve never done before like stunt cheerleading or how to run a cinema.
Start a society
I want to come up with a new and innovative idea for a society. Something nobody has ever thought of. I’m running out of time for this one so you guys may have to do this one on my behalf.
Okay, I’m cheating a little as I actually did my first ever protest over the weekend which inspired this blog. I took part in Reclaim the Night which was a march against sexual violence and assault. I learnt that political activism really isn’t my kind of thing but at least I can tick it off the bucket list.
Arts and Crafts
I’m not very creative but I want to learn a craft related skill such as sewing, cross stich or knitting.
The Holiday Season is only a few weeks away but this also means that we are getting closer to the January Exams. It is never too early to start planning your revision so here are a few tips to help you study.
Filter your notes
- Since it is quite difficult to study everything written in the lecture notes, go over them and select the relevant information for your exam. To make studying easier, you could put all the relevant parts in a separate document so you can have everything you need from the lectures in only one place.
Make a study schedule
- Decide on a certain time-slot you want to study everyday and divide the workload on days. Make sure you recap the notes you have already studied just to keep the information fresh in your memory.
- If you find it difficult to stay focused on your work, set a reward for when you finish studying what you planned for that day. Having something to look forward to can boost your productivity.
If you want to learn more about how you can revise efficiently for the upcoming exams, you can attend the Exam Revision Workshop at 301 on 5th and 6th December.
You can sign up and find out more about this workshop by clicking here.
You may not think it but your surroundings play a huge part in your happiness and ability to study. With that said, here are my top 5 tips for making your student house feel more like a home!
- Pick up some decent fairy lights.
I must admit, I do have an unhealthy obsession with fairy lights! But they make so much difference in a space that is otherwise dominated by unusually harsh lighting, e.g. in the kitchens of halls. You can grab them for relatively cheap, in a range of colours and styles and can even get outdoor ones for those evening summer BBQ’s (or just the one BBQ, when the weather is somewhat nice on that one day in the middle of exam season).
- Bring things from home that make the space your own (especially in your bedroom).
This may sound rather obvious but you’d be surprised how many people turn up to a shell of a room and leave it that way for the whole year. Little things like photos, soft furnishings or souvenirs from a favourite trip can all make your room feel a little bit more ‘you’.
- Dress up your house for the holidays!
If you love Halloween, carve pumpkins to your heart’s content! If people in your house celebrate Christmas, then give the house a Christmas makeover! Or, ask your housemates about any holidays they may celebrate that you don’t – you never know, you might even learn something!
Purchasing some easy-to-care-for plants such as small cacti can really help to brighten up a room. Or, if you want to be extra lazy, you can get some very real-looking artificial plants for very cheap. This year, my house got some artificial flowers to add a splash of colour to our bathroom and they only cost about £1.50 from Wilko’s!
No one likes walking in to a house that feels fusty and, unfortunately, lots of student houses and flats seem to have that smell, particularly when you first move in after the long vacation period. Candles may not be allowed due to health and safety but that doesn’t mean your house can’t smell nice! Pick up some cheap reed diffusers, plug ins or air fresheners instead.
Hi everyone! I thought I would share with you a short blog post about how I go about planning my essay assignments. I have been at Sheffield uni for three years now (scary, where has the time gone?) and I have discovered a planning timeline that works for me and helps me balance my workload.
I give myself at least four weeks to complete an essay, and that means that I don’t end up stressing near to the deadline:
Week 1: This is when I gather all of my readings and make preliminary notes on each one, with references to why it is relevant to my essay/argument. It is also a good idea to think of your essay question at this point (if you have to make up your own), so that your reading and argument is focused from the start.
Week 2: I then create a plan and structure for my essay. This picks out the main themes throughout the essay, and how I will go about laying out these themes. It is always best to do this before starting to write, as you can end up having bits of writing here and there which isn’t coherent.
Week 3: The write-up stage. I start writing my ideas and thoughts down under each theme, and try to reference other relevant sources as much as I can. I try not to restrict myself too much at this stage, because it can end up taking longer if I am bothered about sentence structure and typos.
Week 4: Finally, I make sure to proofread and edit my work appropriately to ensure that my writing is concise and that everything makes sense. Try to leave a couple of days to step away from your work in the middle of this week, so that you have a fresh pair of eyes to edit it again. You could even get your friends/flatmates/family to help you spot mistakes/understand your argument!
This is by no means the most perfect way to plan your essay but it has worked for me so far! Be sure to go to some 301 workshops to help with your essay, such as: Essay Planning and Structure, Developing Your Argument, Critical Thinking, Academic Writing and Time Management! You can see the calendar here: https://www.sheffield.ac.uk/ssid/301/services/workshops
What to do when you’re done with studying!
Just do nothing for a while, lie in bed and stay there until you feel like getting up and doing something.
The truth is many students are always tired. How many times have you missed a class because you’re tired? Prevent this by napping like a boss. Try different napping times and techniques to see what suits you best. Some people like 7 minute naps, others like 90 minute naps. Personally, I’m a 20 minute power napper.
Learn a language
This isn’t the first time I’ve mentioned Duolingo, you can learn so many different languages. Impress recruiters with your High Valyrian skills or stick to the more traditional languages like French. It’s also something you can impress your family with over the table at Christmas.
Tidy house, tidy mind. Put on your favourite music, get the Marigolds on (or Sainsbury’s basics- we don’t discriminate) and dance the dirt away. Your housemates will love you for it too.
Do some food prep
Research the foods that freeze well and batch cook them. You can freeze them for a quick and healthy meal. You can also bake some cookies or other snacks if you still don’t want to leave the kitchen. Again, this is best done with your favourite music.
Write a blog
You can get creative and write your own blog. WordPress allows you to do it for free. You can do anything from fashion to chess strategies. Pro tip: include memes- everyone loves memes!
Watch back-to-back episodes of your favourite show or get ready for Christmas with incredible movies. Pro Tip number 2: The best way to spread Christmas Cheer is singing loud for all to hear- if you don’t get that quote you have not lived and must watch Elf for procrastination!
Go to the IC
This may be the last thing you thought would come up but the IC is a treasure trove of books. One thing I have always wanted to do but never got round to is to go to the IC and learn something other than my subject. You can read about policing strategies, feminism, archaeology, business or whatever interests you. Have a look on starplus and find something interesting. Who knows, you may even end up doing a masters in it.