How to Transition from Summer to Back to School
The countdown is on! School starts back up again for the return of the fall semester on September 3rd – in 11 short days! That transition from summer back into school mode can be tough, so take a look at these tips to make sure you’re ready for success:
- Give Yourself a Buffer
Try to arrange it so that the last couple of days of summer, right before school starts up, are wide open for you to prepare. This is a good time for you to make sure you have all your school supplies in order, draw up a copy of your course schedule (with room numbers!), and mentally prepare for getting back into student-mode.
- Gather Supplies
Everyone has a note-taking system that works best for them. If you know what you like, get that ready again! If you need to try something new this term, start thinking about what you want to do. Remember that studies show that writing your notes out by hand is the best way to learn and retain information, so I always suggest you ditch the digital. Personally, I like to get a big coil notebook that’s already divided into 2-4 sections, so I can use one section for each course and not have to lug a big binder or a ton of small notebooks around with me. Small accordion folders are also a great option for organizing loose papers, assignments, and hand-outs from your profs.
- Get Your Sleep Schedule Back On Track
It’s no fun, but using the nights leading up to the first day of school to prepare your sleep schedule is a great way to adjust back into your school routine. What time will you have to wake up each morning to get to your classes on time? In half-hour increments, start waking up a little earlier each morning until you’re practiced at getting up on time for class. Similarly, try to get to bed early enough that you’re still getting a solid 8-9 hours of sleep each night. It’s easier said than done, I know, but it’s totally worth it if you want to start the new semester strong!
- Plan on Paper
I know that every time we write a blog about school success we talk about how important it is to get yourself a planner, but we just can’t stress it enough! Keeping track of all your due dates, from major assignments to small readings, is the key to feeling like you’re on top of your to-do list and staying prepared all year long. Find a day-timer with a layout and design you really like, whether you prefer to see a week or two at a glance, or have things laid out down to the hour. Once you get your syllabi, pencil in all your due-dates, and then add them as to-do items before the due date. From reminding yourself to complete a short reading the night before class to getting yourself thinking about an essay topic a couple of weeks in advance so you have time to do all your research without cramming, including to-do lists that align with your deadlines is the best way to stay on top of your schoolwork. Getting everything written out early in the semester will prevent you from feeling like you’re getting in over your head. Start strong so you can continue well!
- Get Excited!
You know you’re going to hate it when you’re in the exam and final paper crunch, but for now, enjoy it! Get excited about going back to your routine, seeing your classmates and professors more regularly, and taking new and interesting courses! Whether you love school or not, stepping into the fall with a positive attitude will make a huge difference.
Enjoy the last of your summer, get excited to be learning again, and have a lovely end of August!