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School work and planning!

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Published: April 23, 2024

There’s no doubt about it – there are school terms that can feel like a hard slog. Term 3 is an example, the weather is often stink, assessments are due, and there’s not a single public holiday in the whole term!

If you’re finding a school term tough, you’re not alone. It’s a great time to think consciously about what rhythms, routines and supports you might need to make the most of the term. Have some fun too!

Planning can help stop school worries from growing and help us see a way through challenging times. As we head into a new term, concerns about things like credits or not keeping up with certain subjects can start to affect our mood or become worries that bother us day-to-day. It’s a great time to check-in with where you’re at, ask for help from others and plan how you want to get through the term with some supports in place.

Start with some questions:
  • Which subjects are you finding a challenge and who could you talk to about that?
  • Do you actually know how you’re going with your credits, or have you just assumed the worst?
  • Which teacher or school guidance counsellor would be good to approach?
  • Do people in your family know where you’re at with your course work and how can they help with the work, or with talking to someone at school?
  • Do you have a friend who loves the subject that you don’t like, and could you team up?
  • Which subjects or parts of school do you love? And how can you do more of that?!

At Real and Pathways, we have a Being Well strategy. This has five focus areas to help support people to live full, healthy lives. I want to highlight two of these which are helpful concepts when planning: Working well; and Connecting well.

Working well is about setting up spaces and routines that allow you to be at your best. Do you have a place at home where you can do schoolwork? Or perhaps consider heading to the local library. Libraries are warm and I love that they have just the right amount of people around. They make me feel connected but not distracted.

It’s also a great time to put together a timetable for how much time you want to commit to study, and when. Include other stuff you want to do too. Can you plan your ‘non-schoolwork’ time at the same time as a friend?

This leads, of course, to Connecting well. Connection is about remembering that you’re not alone. You can ask for help, you can give help, and together with others you can share in both the fun and the struggles of life.

Ask for help to access support and let people know what you need for your learning (both at school and at home).

But also remember that a school term is about more than JUST schoolwork – investing time in connecting with others also supports wellbeing. Who do you enjoy spending time with? Are there sports or activities that you want to re-start? Where in your study timetable is the plan for fun? Are there ways that you could support your family, perhaps by making dinner or helping with a younger sibling?

Putting in some planning ahead of time can be really helpful to buffer against school-related stress.

Even with all this thought and planning, it is common for people to need some help. If you’re finding it hard, don’t hesitate to let someone know; reach out to a friend, a family member, a teacher – or try contacting one of the support services available such as: 1737, Youthline (0800 37 66 33), or try asking Aunty Dee .

Connect, connect, connect!

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