The time is upon us once again.
School is beginning for some of us in the next couple of weeks. For me, I start in two days! Tomorrow is my last day of summer 🙁 With that said, I am very excited to be starting a new school.
If you’ve read my previous moving posts, then you’ll know that I transferred to the University of Southern Maine from my college in California. So I’m a bit more nervous to be going back to school than I would be if I had stayed. Now I need to find where my classes are and have a whole new set of faces to see.
Not going to lie, being at a new school (and have not even started yet!) has gotten me a bit stressed out about becoming organized.
I thought I would share my top five ways on how I (try) to stay organized throughout the school year in regards to my classes. These tips will work regardless if you’re in high school, college, or just trying to organize your life!
1. Have a separate app/calendar for school work.
I use Google calendars for school and the Apple calendar for class times, work schedule, etc. The difference between the two is that for the google calendar I only have my school stuff on there.
Luckily, I’ve been given a couple of syllabi so far so I’m able to put it in my calendar. I put where the class is, the homework and lesson plan for the day, and any other notes I would want. I typically use my Apple calendar to just remind me where I need to go in my day. I can go into great depth with the Google calendar. For me, it works keeping the two separate.
I make the days where I have exams and midterms in dark red so I can see it really easily and have plenty of time to prepare for it. It’s a really easy way to see what I need to do or have prepared on my phone in case I don’t have any books/planner with me.
Above is an example. I will also coordinate the color of the class to the class’s notebook that I have for it. This makes it really easy to stay organized and remember which notebook to bring to class!
2. Work and Plan Ahead.
I don’t know about you, but I hate having to read a whole chapter the night before it’s due. Working/planning ahead is soooo great if you know you’ll be busy during the school week.
Here’s what I mean. You know that during the first week of school you will be reading chapters 1-3, then try to read and take notes on those chapters before you go to class. I try to work ahead for the following week that way it’s less stressful during the school week.
I suggest only working one week in advance as to not be confused or overfill your head (unless that works for you!). I will take notes on the assigned readings, so that when they are actually due, I can flip through my own notes and see what I need to go over again. I am typically very busy during the school week and will work ahead when I have some free time. That is usually the weekend prior. I’ve been doing this for the last year and a half. I didn’t work during the weekend so I had a lot of free time to catch up and get ahead in my classwork. I was way less stressed during the school week because I already had everything I needed to get done completed.
3. Color Code your classes.
My favorite notebooks are the Yoobi ones from Target. I’ve been using them for the past two years. I absolutely love them, the pages don’t bleed when you write on them and they are a nice crispy white #notsponsered. I just really love that brand and they have tons of cute colors/patterns!
While I may not fill up the notebook and could probably combine classes, it keeps me more organized. When the class is over, I will use the leftover pages for my own personal use (grocery lists!) so I don’t waste paper. I will use a different color notebook for each class. Blue/green for my science classes and pink/purple for any other classes. On this note, I color code everything. Like I said in my #1 tip, I coordinate the color of the class on my Google calendar to the notebook.
4. Make a list of what you need for each class.
Personally, I don’t like having a heavy backpack so I try to only have what I need for my classes for that day. Below is an example of what my list would look like. It’s a great way to make sure you have everything. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve gone to class forgetting my calculator. Depending on the teacher to have extra calculators can be extremely stressful, especially on test days.
Something I would really recommend to have at all times are scantrons. You never know when you’re going to need one. I try to have at least two on me, in case someone else forgets one. It’s easier to have one already then try to get one 10 minutes before a test. Also, my top thing I forget is lab goggles. I hate having to borrow them, who knows who wore them before you! That is why it is the first thing on my science to bring section!
5. Learn and use your school portal/blackboard.
Whichever site your school uses, become extremely familiar with it. Especially if you have online classes or assignments that will be due online. When I was at Cal Poly I had many classes where we had tests online so I had to frequently use the portal. At USM, many of my classes require assignments and posts that are online. Switching schools means that I have to learn a whole new portal system specific to that school. If you are a freshman at a college, take some time to become familiar with your college’s portal where class information is posted.
For anyone who isn’t a freshman I would recommend taking the time to read what each class requires and what is expected. I have a class where I am supposed to print out a daily handout. Learning how to access that will make it easier to do so, instead of becoming frustrated when I’m trying to find it 20 minutes before class begins.
For every minute spent in organizing, an hour is earned.
I hope my top 5 tips helped you stay organized for school! Let me know if any of these work for you or if you have any other suggestions!