It’s that time of the year again. The time when we all dread thinking, “Oh no! School’s starting again!” 

We like leaving things to the last minute, especially if it’s about school—homework, internals, studying. But as we like to say, “new year, new me”. And what better way to kick off 2023 than being prepared for school? 

Here, I have curated a list with the help of fellow students to give you the best experience in starting the new year strong so it doesn’t have to be a last-minute rush! 

1. Get your stationery and books 

This one’s a no-brainer, but it is often still overlooked. Don’t be that person that is behind on work because they still haven’t purchased the workbook in the stationery list. Or it still hasn’t arrived in the mail which, in that case, I apologise 

Get onto OfficeMax and order your stationery for the year. Head into the mall and buy some extra pens, pencils, or even a new pencil case. Upgrades, people. Upgrades. 

2. Sort out your uniform 

For students who are still in the same groups (junior or senior), this can mean just making sure it still fits. For the girls, check your skirts so that they’re not too short. If you’re transitioning from Year 10 to Year 11, get yourself the stripes. 

If you have uniforms for extracurriculars, it won’t hurt to check if they still fit you, too. If not, head to John Russell Menswear or the school’s second-hand uniform shop to get some new replacements. 

3. Prepare your bag 

Even if classes only start on the second day back, having a bag ready filled with your stationery is a great way to get the ‘back-to-school’ mindset ready. Plus, it will save you the stress of running around the house the night before. Believe me; we’ve all been there. 

4. Get back into a healthy routine 

Getting back into a healthy routine includes eating healthy meals. getting to bed early, and setting a schedule. We’ve probably been staying up until midnight (I’m guilty) but that’s not something we should be proud of. School starts at 8.30 am, so a good place to start could be waking up before 8.30 if you wake up at around noon these days. Eating healthy meals can help you adjust to a new sleep schedule and give you renewed energy for the first term. 

And that ends it for general tips. For the seniors, particularly the Year 12s and 13s, there are some extra steps to get you settled into 2023. 

5. Prepare your course confirmation sheets 

Course confirmation is on the 25th of January.

Save your official results and mock reports into PDF files and print them along with your course confirmation sheet. If you’ve been given instructions on course confirmation, read carefully and make sure you arrive at the designated times. Remember, you can’t get your timetable without being there. 

6. Study early 

For most of us, these grades are our be-all or end-all. And while most of us probably hate studying, getting a little head start is better than leaving it for later. To get you started, here are some resources to guide you: 

SaveMyExams (SME) & PhysicsandMathTutor (PMT) — these websites got me through my A levels. With their extensive resources of notes and past papers, preparing for exams is a breeze. OR 

NZQA — For NCEA students, this is your holy grail. 

Knowt — with Quizlet becoming paid, learning from flashcards is a struggle. With Knowt, flashcards are free (yay!) with similar features as Quizlet such as Learn mode, Test mode, and so much more. You can even store notes on the same website. Talk about efficiency. 

Sparknotes & Shmoop — if you’re studying any literature for English, these are the places for when you’re stuck. They’ve got summaries, analyses, and tons of resources for countless literature works to help you in your essays. 

And finally, set your goals! This is for both juniors and seniors. “New year, new me”, right? So don’t forget to set your goals for 2023. Whether it’s getting good grades, trying out new extracurriculars, or making more friends, let this be your year. 

I’ll see you guys at school on the 31st. Until then, have a good holiday!

January 24, 2023
Clarissa Oblefias

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