LBCC - Organizing Your Study Time - Part 1

Uploaded by LongBeachCityCollege on 07.02.2011

alright uh... well i'd like to welcome you to the workshop this is actually the first
of two parts that are related to the same subject which is time management
and i wanted to say right at the beginning kind of plant a little thought in your mind
in all the years that i've been teaching and i've been here for a long long long time
one thing that i've discovered more than anything else i'm so confident about this that i would
almost put money on it if i were a betting man
is that the number one reason excuse me why most people
don't make it through college
so they drop out
they uh... for whatever reason don't reach uh...
degree don't transfer whatever their goals are
it is because of really poor
skills and habits in this area
this is why we do two separate workshops cause it's kind of a big topic
and so uh... next week we're going to talk a little bit more specifically just so you know
this about
how to set up a daily and a weekly schedule how to avoid procrastinating which is
a really big problem for a lot of people
those are the two main topics next week
and today what we're uh... aiming to do is to get you thinking about the way you spend
time now
figure out how you might be able to spend it a little better and there are three questions
that i'm gonna
give to you to
have you think about and learn to answer for yourself that's kind of the
structure of the workshop
the first one
is the one that i always give people first because if the answer to this one is yes
then everything else I teach you is going to do you no good
so this is a really important one to start with
and so here's what it is
am i too busy
okay if you're the type of person who has taken on way too much
and you don't have enough hours in the day to even get everything done then anything
else you try for time management is not going to work because you won't have time to do it
it's kind of obvious
so what i'm going to do with you is sort of a
modified version of what i do when i teach this in my class and
should have mentioned this before too i think some of you know that but i teach learn eleven
which is a study skills course
and uh...
we cover in that course the same things that i teach here except just way more
and more in detail
and so I always start with this and then i ask students to write a bunch of numbers
when it comes to time it's all about numbers
minutes and hours and days and weeks and all that
so if this looks like a math workshop for a little while
and you hate math
don't turn me off keep focused and it'll be pretty simple for you to do
so here's the first thing
one of the things that everybody in here needs to do on a daily basis is certain just basic
activities that are life activities
we're not going to take the time to do this
today but you can jot this down if you like it on your own just take a few minutes to
think about it
later today or whenever
um... these are five categories that you do i hope
pretty much everyday
okay sleep
the fourth one would be running errands
and then the fifth one is
uh... what is this by the way just to make sure we all are clear
whatever you do to make yourself presentable so brush your teeth shower uh... whatever okay
by travel i'm mostly mean the basic travel to and from school to and from work that kind
of thing and then the errands are just all the other things you run around and do
well almost everybody
does all five of these everyday so the question for you to figure out is
on the average day if there is such a thing
how many hours do you spend total doing all five of these
i'm going to write numbers up here that are semi-average
and yours might be higher or lower but it gives you kind of a starting point something
to think about so these are uh... kind of average numbers
seven hours of sleep
two hours for preparing and eating and cleaning up after whatever a person does
one hour for travel one hour for errands and maybe an hour for hygiene
that's without fractions just to make it simple to add
so if you fill all these out and you think about how much time you spend
it could be higher but this total equals
okay and what's the significance of this number twelve in terms of hours
it's half a day right so if you were to calculate your total for this and like a lot of students
it's fourteen
fifteen sixteen
uh... that's pretty depressing
for a minute
because it means that you do these things which are a required part of life
and it takes over half the day
so over half the day's gone that means you don't have very many hours left
for everything else you need to do it and also like to do
quick question and again we won't spend too much time on this
what are some categories of a person's life
things that they need to do or like to do
that are not listed here
school work uh... like family
exercise socializing entertainment
the list goes on and on
do you do all of those things every day
probably not but they're part of your life and you want them to be a regular part
so if your total is around this or a little more or less it means you have about half
the day left for everything else
if your total is high it means you only have
part of the day left
and so you have to become a professional juggler you have to keep all the different activities
going and that's hard for a lot of people
especially when you're pulled in many different directions because of the things you have
to do in your life
so that's the first thing and then second
uh... there is a number that is a always a very significant number to me as a teacher
and it's this one the number fifty six and what i teach people about this
is that this is what i always refer to as the magic number for time management it's
a number that's really important to remember
and i'll explain
why that is now
uh... if a person worked eight hours a day what would that mean about them
what is eight hours a day at work
yep full-time right so that's kind of thought of full time
if a person worked eight hours a day seven days a week
that would be a busy person right what's the total here
fifty-six right so uh... even though some of you are not working right now
school is your job
i want you to first think that this number is like fifty six hours a week which would
be like someone working eight hours a day seven days a week
that's a lot
is this person too busy or not
well it's hard to say for sure
but if they told you that they were also looking for another twenty hour week job
to add to this
then i think you'd look at them i hope if you had any compassion and you think oh
it's a lot you may kill yourself ok so what does this have to do with you as a student
and so this is what you can actually take a minute to do if you would
uh... this should be pretty easy i think for everybody the first one
is to write down the number of units that you're taking this semester
and i'm going to put a number here but i don't really want you copying mine i just
want you to put what's true for you
this is uh... sort of a
typical number
uh... and before we go any further what does this mean
it means uh... full-time
okay so
i don't know why they do that
sometimes people have eleven units and they are unbelievably busy but that college says
if you're twelve or higher
you're considered full-time okay so that's one and then the second thing that i want
you to do
is take whatever number you wrote
and i want you to
double it or multiply by two that's your
complicated math for the day so in my case it would be twenty four
but again yours could be
way higher or way lower
and then the third one which for most people is pretty easy is to write down the number
of work hours
that you have this semester and if you're not working
that's easy zero if you are
how many hours per week do you work
and so i'm gonna put typical part time job here
but again your hours could be
zero all the way to whatever and again it's your sort of customized idea
after you have your three numbers go ahead and take a second and add them together
and circle the total and then we're gonna look at what that might mean about you okay
so i'm gonna
circle mine but i'll give you a second to
add those three numbers
quick question first
uh... you noticed how we got the same number again here
how many of you have a total if any that's higher than this
two okay
how many of you have a total that's lower than forty
below forty
okay some more
and then the rest of you should be between forty and fifty six unless i lost you and
you're still
counting that's okay
well what does all this mean first of all I want to look at this with you just for a second
some of you may already know this so you can kind of let us know
uh... if you take a class in college
that is three units
and i'm sure almost everybody here has at least one of those this semester 'cause it's
the most common number
how many hours per week
do most three-hour I mean three uh... unit classes meet
per week
total for the week the total time that you're in class for the week
yeah what a lot of people say is two-and-a-half 'cause they're thinking of a class that meets
an hour and fifteen minutes twice a week but
that sort of doesn't include the little passing period so to speak so technically what i want
you to get
is that most regular lecture type classes that are three units
meet roughly three hours a week
and that's why they're three units
is because of the number of hours
now is this always true no
some other people are in a vocational program it might be ten units and they spend twenty
five hours there a week
doesn't match
other times people have a uh... science lab class that's one unit
and they're there way more than one hour a week and so this is more for straight
lecture classes so if you had a psychology class a history class
political science
things like that that is usually the case one for one so that would mean
that this person
if they had twelve units of regular lecture type classes
they would be in class about twelve hours a week
okay approximately so that's the idea
uh... who wants to give us what you either know or think you know
that this line is all about
what is this for right here
yes this is everybody's favorite activity in the whole world
which is studying
and everybody said oh that
uh... i don't know how many of you have ever heard this before this little formula right
is not a rule
that everyone has to follow it is a guideline is kind of like a and uh... educated guess
in a way
it says that for every hour that you spend in class you should plan to study two hours
outside of class
so that you can be successful and reach all the goals you have in college
so if that's true
that means somebody who has a class that meets three hours a week will do the advanced math
and come up with that number
right six hours of studying per week
now if i told you that you need to study six hours a week
i would think everybody in here would say
alright if i have to
it doesn't scare anybody really you just go alright
but how many classes is this for
yes one
and so that doesn't scare anybody this number scares
almost everybody
because it's again saying if you're a full-time student with twelve units you should study
twenty four hours a week
that's a lot of hours okay
that's like four hours a day six days a week
like a job
which is what it's supposed to be actually but that's what it is
some people don't think they have that many hours to study so that might be the answer
to that other people say
i could find the time
but i hate studying
i forget everything i study i don't know what i'm doing when i study so i could sit there
for twenty four hours during the week but it's a waste of time
these workshops along with learn eleven are designed to try to help people to learn how
to study better
take less time to study but get more done and remember more in all of that so if you
keep coming to workshops you'll be getting ideas are related to that
this person here
is a
full-time student
with a part-time job
and when you add those three numbers the hours in class
the study time and the work hours if the total goes over fifty-six
what does that
usually mean
as the answer to that
yes it probably means the person is too busy if the number is below that it probably means
their okay but I
have to say this kinda wrap this up and that is
who is the biggest expert in the world
how much a person can handle
not me
uh... some people said you
they're trying to compliment me whatever it is not me it's you because you're the one who
lives your life but
i have seen so many students make a mistake in this area and take on way too much
and kind of fall apart as a result of this give you one quick example of this
every semester that i teach at this college
i have a conversation with a student in the second or third week
and this is now the fourth week and i had this conversation with somebody last week
it's a different student every time but they all say the same thing it's like the same
conversation really weird
somebody I had never met before walks up to me really fast and just like this they say
are you scott
and whenever somebody comes up to me fast and says that i'd say this
uh... why
as i'm backing up
and they say somebody my friend told me that you help people with time management
and organizing your time
i am already behind in all my classes and i can't find enough time to and they're just
talking really fast and just getting all upset
and i think everybody here knows whether this is your first semester of college or you've
been around for a while
if you're already behind in all your classes and it's the fourth week that's bad
because it's just going to get busier and busier as you go and so on this person
seems nice and they're coming to me for help so i want to help them but they also seem
frazzled already and so i asked them this
how many units are you taking
they always say something like this they say oh I have fifteen
that tells me a lot right there okay
what's the next number that pops into my head when they say this
thirty okay now do i know that they're going to need that much
no but again it's just uh... guess right now when you add these two numbers together
you get forty-five so this is like a forty-five hour a week job
there's no work here
it's just going to class and studying but that's a full-time job
all in of itself
forty five is well below this so it doesn't sound too crazy
so i say to the person well
as long as you're not working maybe you're just not using your time as wisely as possible
and i'll be happy to give you some ideas
and their answer is always the same they say oh i work
so i grabbed anything i can and i say how many hours a week
what do you think they usually tell me
yeah not you know sixteen on the weekends or whatever forty
okay well i mean it's obvious
this is an extreme example but it's obvious if you add this together you get eighty-five
which uh... makes this like
a joke
this is like two full time jobs plus five more hours on top of that that's a busy busy schedule
uh... most people
when they try to do something like this they get to the end of the semester and they've
either gotten great grades which is kind of a miracle but the whole rest of their life
is sort of fall apart
or their life is in great shape and they've gotten all ds and fs
something's gotta give
so what i ask this student is
um... can you cut units could you drop your units down because that will help right it drops
the total
uh... what do they say
don't touch my units
okay and so this is out and i want to ask you this is really quickly why do i um...
a lot of students who take
a lot of units take a lot of units
there are two reasons
yes one is uh... they have to
anybody here who is on financial aid unless you have an unusual type of financial aid
they basically say do you want your money
and you say yeah
twelve units or more and some people on financial aid say that i wish i could take six units
or eight or nine that's about how much they can handle but they make you take
twelve or more
what's the other reason what's the most common reason
race okay
uh... people say if i take fifteen units in the fall eighteen in the spring and then I'll take
six in the summer
they're in a hurry
okay this is specially true of people who are maybe a little bit older coming back to
school and they're thinking
man the clock is ticking i gotta hurry but the problem is
when you have a schedule like that
if you die before you graduate
it doesn't do you any good and i see people every semester just burn right into
the ground because they've taken on way more than they can handle
well this person says forget it don't touch my units and then i ask them a stupid question
how about your work hours can you drop those way down
they say you gonna pay my bills
and i said no can't touch that then what's left
that makes me very nervous okay so what this person says and again they might be very motivated
and they might be very intelligent very good students they say i'm going to go faithfully
to class
gonna work faithfully
and study a few minutes here and there
and hope I do okay
and no matter how good a student you are if you don't have the time to devote to studying
you're never going to make it
this is especially true as you go further in your education when you get to university
uh... it's kind of like again the pros instead of the college if you're like an athlete
it's a whole other level and if you just give a little left over time to studying you're
never going to survive and so you have to figure out what you can handle
i've had some students who are single
hardly any responsibilities
they can handle more than this
like sixty sixty-five
i've had some who are single
mom's for example
that have one child they have two three children whatever and they have such a busy life that
this number is way higher than they could handle they could only handle like
thirty or twenty-five so you're the one who knows but what i wanted to have you think
about for the future
is that when you get ready to enroll for the fall for example
look at all the classes that you might take
come up with the total units that you would be signing up for
and then do the little math with the times two
and then add any work hours and then look at the result like a job
and if you look at the hours and you think
I can deal with that
then sign up
if you look at the number and your eyes pop out of your head and you think i would kill
myself if i do this
figure out a way to trim it down some how
again that's really an important way to begin the whole process of time management 'cause again
if you've taken on too much
you just can't be successful it's really hard ok so
that's a little magic number that we're focusing on any questions on that before we move
uh... we have two more questions the second one is actually a fairly short one
and uh...
i'm gonna give you a handout in just a minute that goes with this but here's the question
and that is
um... do i know
how to set
and reach
okay some people know how to set them
most people don't reach them
some people don't really even know how to set them so that's what we're gonna look
at for just about five to ten minutes
and i'm not going to get into this in a lot of detail but i just again wanna kind of get
you thinking along these lines because a lot of people never think about this and i think
it's important because everybody in here has goals
as a college student i hope everybody has life goals
some people say i have no goals i just get up in the morning and then make it up as I go
so i guess that's ok if that works for you
uh... i'm gonna pass a whole bunch of these back so if you could uh... do that
uh... same thing here
uh... yes maybe a couple behind you that'll work
uh... if i miscounted or whatever let me know but otherwise uh... we're gonna move
through this ok at the very top of the page
there's an acronym the word smart this is again the first letter of each letter in
the word smart is the first letter of one of the
qualities of a good
plan or a good goal
so i'm gonna just go through these really briefly and then i'm gonna give you examples
and tell you
how that applies to school okay for the first one the s stands for specific
so the plan you make the goal that you set has to be very specific
the m is for measurable
okay the a is the hyphenated action- oriented
and then the r is for
okay and then the last one the t
time based
so let me give you a really quick example just from life in general this has nothing
directly to do with school i'm going to tie that in in just a minute
let's say that a person
wanted to or needed to lose weight
people are on diets all the time and everything else so let's say
that uh... i woke up yesterday because that's the first of february and that's the time
that everybody starts something new is the first day of a month so somehow that's like life
begins again this month
and let's say that i woke up and i said you know i need to lose some weight and need to
get in better shape
so that's a goal
that doesn't fit any of these here
if i said uh... i need to lose some weight
how about I'll lose ten pounds
okay so is that specific
is it measurable
yeah right so we're kind of good
um... how about
how long would it normally take a person in a healthy way to lose ten pounds
yep about maybe a month or so because that's like two pounds a week or a little bit more
so that's not you know crazy that's realistic if i said to you I want to lose ten pounds
and if i see you friday
you can weigh me
and i'll lose it in three days
i think you'd say uh that's not realistic day so time based again has a beginning and
it has a
ending date
and that way
you can work toward it but i could tell you all day every day
yep i'm gonna lose ten pounds by the end of february gonna do it
and again you think all of this and then your question should be how
and if i say well
despite trying hard
you look at me and say but what's the plan how are you going to do that
I'm just gonna get up every morning and weigh myself and hope that it's less
I know you'll look at me and say well that's probably not gonna work
but if i told you you-know-what i'm going to
not eat anything after seven o'clock at night
i'm gonna go out for a half hour to an hour walk five days a week and i'm not going to
go out to any fast food restaurants for the month of february
then you're thinking well i'm not sure that's like completely enough but
that's a pretty specific and action oriented plan 'cause now i can just follow my plan
the more you have plans in life and you just say yeah one day I hope to do this
you never really get there you just sort of drift on if you can learn to do this all five
of these then at least a plan is very specific and you have a target that you can move toward
okay so what does this have to do specifically with school well
at the bottom of the page
again this is something for the sake of time
that i'm not going to really have you fill out today during the workshop but you can
do it later on your own if you like and that would be
for you to write every class that you're taking this semester
and then to write the grade goal and i want to explain that for just a second
um... what would be the grade goal
um... for most people when they start taking the class
right but the one thing you don't want to do necessarily and i've had people do this
all the time is that they write all their classes and then i look and it's a a a
and i look at that and say well that's a good goal but
is it realistic or not
most of you probably know even though it's only the fourth week and i know you haven't
gotten a deeply into your classes yet you know which ones are harder than other ones
and which ones you may
struggled with more
i always tell people that if you have a class any class in college
and you have to use both hands to pick up the book
that's going to be a hard class
and so on
the idea is to be realistic and to say okay
in my english class i know that i can get an a if i work really hard
so that's realistic i'm gonna have to stretch a little but i can do it
in my biology class
i would go out and have a party if i got a b because it's a really hard class and i'd
love to get an a but i just know it's gonna be extra tough for me
i hate math
if i passed
i'm gonna do cartwheels down the street for the next uh... ten years and so if you put
down a goal that you feel is realistic for you okay and then
the other part of this is the most important part that's kinda why i went through this
with you is
what are you gonna do
to reach that goal
and so i've had students before for example who are in math and especially if math is
their least favorite subject they say i'm gonna go for a b
and that's a pretty big leap for me but i'm gonna go for a b and i say okay how are you
gonna get the b
and they say do well
and i said yeah i know but how are you going to do well they say i'm going to try really
well that doesn't really fit these very much so that i keep pressing them in a nice way
i hope and here's what they finally come up with just as an example they say
in order to get the grade that i'm aiming for for my math class what i'm going to do
is i'm going to make sure that i never miss class unless i have a huge emergency because
I know that math builds on itself and if i miss i'm going to be behind
also i have a hard time concentrating
when a teacher is teaching and math I need to really focus so i'm always gonna sit in
the front row
so that i have the best chance to concentrate
and i'm also gonna turn into every assignment on time so i don't lose any points for being
and if the teacher offers any extra credit
i'm gonna grab every one of those points
okay so that is a
specific plan it's measurable it's realistic there's action
et cetera it fits it all
and if you just say i'm hoping to get an a in one of my classes this semester
and you just say by just sort of getting good grades and hoping
you probably won't reach it but if you have specifics like that
then if you have something that aim for everyday and it usually helps you to come closer at least
toward reaching those goals
okay so again that this is something for you to take it if you want to take a few minutes
and think about this later and especially try to pin yourself down to specifics like
i gave
uh... that would be helpful and again that's all we have to give
now uh...
as the sign in sheet goes around again just remember when that gets to you to just sorta
keep it going for the people in the backers anya
keep it coming so i know it is coming back there
but we have one more part of the workshop today which is gonna take about ten minutes
or so and then we will be done
and that involves the third question that um...
i always like to teach my students
and i have an illustration or a story about that and that is this
do i know
what's coming
my experience with students is that um...
way over half maybe like three quarters of all students are not good at this and if everybody
learned to be good at it
their grades would improve and so what i mean by this
is this
if i walked up to you
right now and i said what do you have
for school for
the rest of the day today
some of you might say
uh... i have one more class this afternoon and then i need to go home tonight and start
reading a chapter in one of my textbooks
so you kind of like know what you're gonna do i hope
if i ask you and you shrug your shoulders
I would want to talk to you after the workshop
if i ask you how about tomorrow
what what's going on tomorrow for you with the school
i hope you know
but if i ask you how about next week how about three weeks from now
what's going to be going on then if you're like most people you just say
uh... I'll figure it out when i get there
but in order for you to be really good with your time management because of the way college
works you need to be able to go from here
to seeing way way out further and that's the goal of this whole question and of what
i'm about to give you
um... this handout is a really
simple looking thing
and when you look at it you'll just think yes there it is
but i've had a lot of my students tell me by the end of the semester that this was the
most helpful handout that they've got
and many of them have come back after they're no longer my student to get the new one for
the next semester
and even this semester after that they just keep coming
so i'm the supplier of calendars
to the college so let me explain why first how to use this and then why people
tend to like this and it seems to help them and the as i'm going through this in explaining
the basics of how to use it
i want to have you think about it and see if you can figure out
why people tend to find this helpful and come back for more uh... it's almost a
mystery in a way but hopefully we'll be able to solve it
first of all
as you can tell when you look at this this is a uh... calendar for long beach city college
for this semester it has the whole semester here
if you look at the bottom of the page it has the dates of the semester it has the dates
of your final exams and i know you know you don't want to think about those yet
but they're coming and again unless you have
uh... class that ends early
or unless you have a teacher whose doing something especially strange
all your finals this semester are going to be in that week and a half at the bottom of
the page so you can just be kind of aware that they're coming
in addition to that you see all the holidays and the days off in the vacations in the flex
and i think probably most of you know this but this
to make sure what is a flex day
a day off for
but not for
teachers people say I love those
uh... yeah
those are the worst days for me but for students it is like a national holiday
there is only one flex day in the fall
there are two in the spring you can see then right there including one
next tuesday
and so you can sort of count the days till you have a day off
uh... quick reminder just sort of uh...
pause here for a second
every wednesday
all semester long from twelve to twelve forty or forty five I'll be in here teaching a workshop
with few exceptions one
march twenty third
i love my job but not that much
and so i'm going to be in the meetings while you're sleeping
and so no workshop on that day and then of course no workshop on april twenty seventh
because we're off on the spring break
now i want to tell you one really quick thing before i sort of describe this
i don't know if of those of you who have been around for college for even a year or
if you look at this carefully there's something very strange on this calendar
and that is the spring break
that we have
is the latest
i think i've ever seen
and that's that should be depressing to everybody because
what everybody does in the spring when they get this calendar
everybody loves to see holidays and they have all this to look forward to but
usually the spring break is like three or four weeks earlier
and so when you start getting burned out
you just think a couple more weeks and then i got a week off now you go forever
and burn out badly
and then by the time you've get back from the vacation you only have two more weeks
and then their finals uh...
well i hate that and probably students when we get near there they're gonna take we need
time off
and teachers will start staggering too
it's not my choice
it's the college plan and it has to do with easter and when that shows up but it's
just amazing how low it is on the schedule okay
now um...
if i gave this to you and just said just put it in your notebook and look at it
uh... might help ok
but that's not what it's for the reason that this is supposed to be helpful is that a person
that would actually write information in some of these boxes
that's the point
so what kind of information what important dates would you have as a college student
that you would need to make sure you put on here
test dates would be the most obvious what else
uh... possible what else do the teachers make you do
yeah homework so homework due dates
it could be uh... uh... appointment with a
counselor a teacher in the campus it could be a
or some kind of presentation so important dates
all that goes on here
how many of these do you get for a semester
one this is like a master schedule so everything for all your classes goes on this one sheet
you know these boxes are small
you have write really small sometimes you have maybe two things on the same day so it's going
to be kind of tough but you write it all in here
what does not go on here
everything else in your life that goes into your phone or on to your wall calendar or
whatever you know how you keep track of things okay
I always try to encourage people to keep this filled out in pencil
because teachers change dates all the time
and if you start crossing things off it's going to be hard after a while to even read
the calendar so it's a lot better to do it in pencil and then make adjustments as teachers
make adjustments
um... another thing uh... about this is that there is something missing from this calendar
did anybody notice
yes sunday
when was the last time you saw a calendar that had a whole day of the week missing uh... probably never
and people look around all the time and they're looking for sunday everywhere and it's not
on there and that's to kind of remind you that this is just for
school related things
and not for the rest of your life
oh and one other thing um... how do you know what the dates are
to put on here where do you find out that information
sometimes syllabus
right if the teacher has everything all laid out
uh... what's the other source
if teacher has a web site that's handy to have it there but the other
way is
the old-fashioned way
out of the mouth of the teacher so a lot of teachers and i'm kinda like this with a lot
of my things when they have a test coming up when they have an assignment coming up
they announce it a week or two ahead of time and they write it on the board whatever so that's when
you grab this
and you add that to it so that it's
accurate you know that it's up to date
okay soÉ I want to see if you can figure out
this is your test for the day i'm not allowed to give you tests in these workshops but i'm
gonna give you one anyway
there are two reasons why a lot of students find this to be even more helpful than a day
planner or a wall calendar and keep coming back for more
one is a big reason and the other one is a
small reason
just based on the way this looks what might be helpful or attractive to somebody
about this
yeah organization is true
how many pages is it one
the whole semesters on one page
why is that different than uh... planner
or a calendar here's why this example this is my
number one example to give because it happens all the time to me and i nearly have a heart
attack ever time this happens so it's good that my heart is pretty good cuz otherwise
i'd be gone by now
i want you to look back to last week
because this is when it happened it always happens like this
tuesday january twenty-fifth on the calendar very easy to spot
now that was the third week right so very early in the semester
and that is why i i've met a guy I sorta ran into a student and i said
hows everything goin this semester and he said great
i said had any tests yet
no that's why it is going great
okay and i said i what classes do you have and he started he said well i see i've got psychology
i said stop there do you have a quiz or test coming up pretty soon he said i think so
and I said what date is it
he looked at his syllabus and there it was right there in black ink and it said that
it was on thursday february
uh... third
okay so i want you to look again and find
january twenty fifth
and february third
easy to see right right there
well here is the reason i almost had a heart attack
i said to him oh the test is on february third are you doing all your reading and your
getting through the chapters and kinda getting ready
and he said
what i've heard a lot from students he said
i haven't even started yet i have an even taken the shrink wrap up the book yet
and i said why and his answer which again
i've heard from students many times over the years scares me every time i hear it
he said well i haven't because the test is
next month
now is that true
yes what you're supposed to say is technically
yes cuz we were in january
and the test was in february
but when you look at this you also know that
is next week and you know as a human being
when you keep thinking that something you have to do
is next month
you walk around all day and if anybody asks you about it you say
i have a lot of time no big deal but when its next week
that suddenly changes everything and it's very much human nature for us
to focus on the month we are in and not think about the next month until
the next month
and yesterday was the first day of february and if you had anything to do for your personal
life or a bill to pay or school
and you thought that's february and then suddenly you look yesterday
you panic ok so that's impossible to happen with this unless you never look at it because
it again it's all right there
and students so often end up getting caught off guard
and the other part of this is that
i've had students before who have a syllabus for one of their classes and it says that
they have a test on february 2
and have another syllabus in another notebook or in the same one and it says that they have
one on february third
it's right there it but they don't
realize hey thats
two days in a row i got a big test when you put everything on here it's all in one place
and you can see better
now are there any people in here who are in your very first semester of college
if so can i just
see a show of hands i'm not going to ask you to
say anything okay
you don't know this yet i'm going to let you in on a big secret everybody else is going to think
almost all of you
in your college education every semester
you have some weeks during this semester that are kind of on the
light side
in terms of how much you have to do and then some weeks are like the week from hell
so if you filled this calendar out and you had everything in there that you can possibly
know for now
when you look
a couple weeks from now
and you saw the week of february fourteenth and you saw everything blank
except maybe just one quiz on february sixteenth otherwise everything is blank you'd look at
that and just think this is going to be my favorite week of the whole semester because its no big deal
but if you look at the week of february twenty first the week after that and you had two tests on
a project due on wednesday
a speech to give on thursday one more test on friday just like everything at once
i hope
you would look at that now and say i can't have a vacation week this week because
look at that coming up i gotta start now kind of pushes you to action
and remember what I said before this is supposed to help you to know what's coming so that means instead
of this
you're able to look off in the future and see where the really busy weeks are trying
to plan better than to just sort of make it up as you go along which
is really hard for college students
okay so that's the first thing and then the other one i'm just gonna give you this will
just take a minute or two
did the sign in sheet...
make it around is it
uh... have you_ signed in here yeah okay so i'll double check in just a minute okay here's
the other one it's a very minor thing
i see students every semester at least a couple of them this is what happens they miss class
they are absent
nothing all that unusual about that and then i see them the next time we have class
sometimes i'm walking right through the classroom with them
and i see them and i say how are you doing
missed you last time is everything ok
and here's their answer
what do you mean you missed me
we didn't have class
yes we did
no no we didn't
you know real confident they said no we didn't
they were confused why were they confused
because they said
my brother
had the day off school
so i thought it was a national holiday
okay you know i think that different schools have different days off and sometimes people
are really confused cause every other student they know
has the day off and they think that must mean me too
if you're ever wondering do i go to school tomorrow do we have school or not
all you have to do is look on this and if it doesn't say holiday flex day or whatever
you know that we have school
and i've had students before again they think i have this power that i don't have
and they try to convince me to have more holidays
you know and it's not up to me and and look what's coming up in less than two weeks what
isn't you better know this what's monday february fourteenth
yeah valentine's day a people look at me like this
uh... come on
you know the date of love we've got to have that off and they're out campaigning for
a holiday and i said look
it's not up to me i put a lot more holidays on there and other people said that about
groundhog day and columbus day and it is like trying anything they can
so this eliminates any confusion about when there is school and when there isn't
and that helps people who have others in their life who are going to school and they just
kinda get a little lost on that from time to time
so what i would encourage you to do with this
is to use this during the semester along with whatever other way you keep track of things
and kind of do it the way that i described it and at the end of the semester if it was sort
then at least you tried it no big deal if you liked it and it helped you to always see what's
you'll come find me next semester and maybe get a new one for that and again that's part
of the experimental process to figure out what might work for you