If you are a sophomore, get ready to relate.
Last year, you were the fish of the school as the upperclassmen tried to hunt you down like sharks. Congratulations! You survived freshman year but you have no clue what curve balls come at you next. You think the struggles are over, you think you are finally the top dog, but you are wrong. As a sophomore, these were the thoughts I entered school with, looking down on the freshmen(even though some of them were taller than me), acting like I knew everything. Well, after a good four months, I already have a list of things I wish I knew before I went into sophomore year. So without further ado, here is a list of sophomore struggles:
Classes Get a Bit Harder
“Welcome to AP …!” You are finally allowed to take an AP course. Obviously, looking at your friends urges you to take some of the hardest classes in high school, maybe even college but at the moment that won’t stop you. What might stop you is your grade a week later. In my opinion, one thing I wish I knew was that an AP class for sophomores is kind of like freshmen year because everyone is scrambling around and have no clue what they are doing. A week into AP Chemistry, I had no clue what I was doing but after a lot of thinking, I decided to keep the course and ended up with a fairly good grade at the end. Although APs might be difficult, I think the more difficult part is figuring out how the overwhelming course runs which can only be learned through some experience, so don’t get nervous if you aren’t doing well in the first couple weeks of the course.
You have already pretty much mastered how your classes will be this year through your experience from freshman year, but a huge twist is thrown at you. This twist is so important that it is one of the biggest factors in college admission. The SAT. Although usually, you don’t take the SAT this year, you are given the PSAT which is like a taste test of a huge meal. Although next year when you give the SAT seems really far away, trust me with all your AP courses it will come up quicker than you can imagine. My advice for incoming sophomores is to do practice SATs over the summer and if that has already sailed then try to incorporate it so that you do at least an hour of SAT practice over the weekends. Although this doesn’t seem like a lot, it will add up pretty quickly and hopefully, your SAT will have a drastic difference.
Planners, Planners, Planners
You could’ve easily gotten past freshman year without being that organized but organization is key to sophomore year. A planner is like a holy book in sophomore year and without it, you won’t be able to survive sophomore year even if you are a genius. Find a place where you can jot down your homework, your “To-do list”, or even plan out your next day and your life will become much easier. It doesn’t even have to be a planner. For example, I use the notes section of my laptop because I carry my laptop almost everywhere I go. Believe me, planning what you have to do makes everything quicker and you don’t have to keep everything memorized in your head. Get a planner.
Sleep is one of the most important, or even THE most important part of your life. Without sleeping a significant amount of hours, you cannot function throughout the day. This is a place where I am lacking as well, and I would recommend to everyone that they sleep at least 8 hours a day. In fact, research proves that it is much better to go to sleep than cram all the information in one night. This also relates to procrastination which is the biggest enemy of a teenager. I have another blog on how to decrease the amount of procrastination you do. Just keep in mind and time your week accordingly so that you can at least get 7-8 hours of sleep because that will benefit you both physically and mentally.
This is a big one. This doesn’t just apply to sophomore year, but actually applies to almost every year in high school. Sophomore year is the first year where you actually know a little about everyone because of the previous years. Since you know a little bit about everyone, you should be able to filter your friends. Although it might not seem like it, friends play an important role in your high school career because you are with them for at least 7 hours a day and 5 days a week. I am very fortunate to have a group of friends who actually care about each other and are genuinely helpful throughout the day. You want to find people who actually care about you and encourage you so that you can perform the best in your high school career.
Although I have yet to complete the list of struggles in sophomore year as I haven’t completed the year yet, I want to emphasize that keeping up with your work, being organized, and having a good group of friends will help you survive this insane year. Good luck!