Back to School from A to Z

Who says learning the alphabet is just for kids?
by Shiloah Matic   |  Jun 3, 2010
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The surefire way to enjoy school is to first enjoy learning. Maybe actually enjoying exams is just wishful thinking, but loving knowledge isn't an impossible idea. History is full of examples of people who loved discovering new things and who changed the world by putting their knowledge to good use: Da Vinci, Einstein, Ben Franklin, the list goes on for centuries. They weren't all star students either, but they were curious about life, about people, and about how things worked. Don't just chase after As and gold stars on your performance charts. Seek out new ideas, fascinating facts, and the answers to all the questions you can think of. 

Meeting new people
Whether it's the new kid at school, the terror teacher, or the boy-next-door-turned-biology-lab-partner whom you want to meet, the easiest way to get their attention is to flash them a big, sincere smile. Your body language speaks louder than words. Smiles tell the other person: "I'm open, and I'm interested in meeting you," and it puts them at ease because it shows you've lowered your defenses and are ready for an exchange of hellos-and maybe phone numbers.


Note taking
The key to note taking is to organize the lectures and board notes in a way that matches how you think. Add diagrams and drawings, jot down your thoughts on what the teacher is saying or write down questions you want to ask, organize everything in an outline or make tables. A tape recorder is a useful gadget if you learn better by listening; this way, you can concentrate on what your teacher is saying and write it down later. Your notes should be an easy-to-use reference for studying, not just something you have because you're expected to make use of your pretty new notebooks.

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Oops moments
No, your life isn't ruined! Oops moments are unavoidable, but humiliation and school-wide shame aren't. Learn to laugh at yourself, and put on a brave (though blushing) face. Yes, you will be teased; but tomorrow, someone else's oops moment will come and yours will be so yesterday. And when someone else trips and is sprawling on the floor, be sure to help them up... Tomorrow, it could be your turn again.


Missing that rogue gene that makes you enjoy sweat, aching muscles, and feats of physical exhaustion? Get over it! For centuries, girls weren't allowed to play sports; those who did were looked down on as being "unladylike." Now, more and more women are excelling at sports-and beating the boys at their own game, too! So next P.E. session, ditch the benchflowers and celebrate what other women have fought for-the freedom to show just how kick-butt you can be.

Read more on the next page.

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Shiloah Matic
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