Lovely Lists #3
You may be looking at this thinking "Why wouldn't I worry?!" and I completely understand because that is how I felt this time last year. Yes, the jump from GCSE to A-Level/other qualifications is huge, but this doesn't mean that you can't do the work. I remember that although I achieved an A at GCSE Spanish, I felt so out of my depth in the AS lessons- so much so that by the end of the first week, I asked my teacher if I should have extra Spanish tuition! However, I didn't have any tuition and I didn't need any, it was just strange adjusting from the relatively comfortable level of GCSE work to really challenging AS work. I ended up achieving a B at AS Spanish which I was very happy with. What I am trying to say is that Year 12's, don't stress yourselves out too much if you're struggling with the work at the moment. It will all start to slot into place within the next few months and before you know it, you'll be a Year 13 giving the same advice to someone in the year below you!
This may sound pretty obvious, but it is so important to be organised with your work at college. Like it or not, you won't be getting just one work book per topic- you'll be given a forest of paper (if you'll pardon the pun)! They're such a pain to carry around, but I would recommend buying some lever arch folders so that you can easily keep track of your work- rather than just leaving the sheets all mixed together! If you want to be SUPER organised, subject dividers are also quite helpful, as well as highlighters, post it notes, plastic wallets- ok, you get the picture!
Ok, I have to admit that the picture is completely useless, but I didn't exactly want to get steal a picture of someone with their friends at college because that could annoy them. When I say make new friends, I mean don't just glue yourselves with people from your secondary school. I know that they will provide you with comfort, because they are familiar faces, but if you make an effort to make new friends, college will be a lot more fun for you. Everyone at college is in the same boat as you and part of being in a new environment is about being with different people. It may be difficult at first to converse with people that you know nothing about, but in a few weeks, you will have found a group of friends very similar to yourself and will wonder why you worried so much. At least, that happened for me, anyway!
Involving yourself in various clubs can be another daunting prospect at first, but it is definitely worth it! One of the great things about college is that it offers so much more in terms of extra curricular activities than secondary school does and you can be a part of so much. One of my friends goes to a sixth form where there is a Harry Potter Quidditch group! These clubs allow you to make friends with people who have similar interest to you, as well as giving you the chance to let off some steam from a hard days work!
What I have found with A-Levels is that because of the quantity of work and all the different, exciting ways you can get involved, it is very easy to become overwhelmed by everything you need to do and struggle to manage your time. The key to this is to remember that your studies take priority. Yes, you may be like me and want to be involved in ABSOLUTELY EVERYTHING, but the truth is that you can't. Before signing up for various activities, you need to take a long, hard look at what you have to do and think whether you have the time to make an extra commitment to something. You don't want to be rushing your school work at night, but equally, you need some YOU time thrown in there as well!
What do you think of my top tips? I'd love to know what your think are some good pieces of advice for anyone starting college for the first time. Let me know in the comments below!