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Saturday, August 8, 2020

Ask Kate Anything: Beating class boredom

Boring classes: we all have to take them at one time or another.

At this point in the semester, your classes are locked in unless you want to pay for a class you don’t finish. Even if you managed to avoid all undesirable classes this semester, if you want to graduate and/or transfer, you have to face them eventually.

You are not alone in the facing of dreaded classes. Everyone has subjects they don’t enjoy, whether it’s math, English, history, science, political science, or all of the above. But the good news is that in every class, there are students who love and thrive in that subject.

Find them. Buy them lunch. Become their friend.

Often those students are just as good as the teacher at explaining new or difficult material. More often than not, those students will have more time to spend with you than a teacher will. And those students usually love to see those they help succeed. Plus, you will have a friend in class, and that automatically makes any class better.

So what if you can’t find those students, or you have a problem making new friends or talking to people you don’t know? What then?

You could always see a tutor. That’s basically the same thing minus the friendship, and you really have to adhere to their tutoring schedule. But it’s a good option.

One little trick that works for many things in life is to adjust your attitude about the subject you hate.

Perhaps you wake up on the wrong side of the bed and you set out in the morning in a rotten mood. You can be annoyed and angry all day, or you can choose to cheer up.

Smile. Wave at people. Call someone you love that always makes you happy and have just the smallest conversation. Put on a fun, upbeat song. Dance a little. Before you know it, that bad mood is gone.

The same goes with this rotten subject. Pretend you like It. Act like you like it. Really pay attention, and let the teacher’s enthusiasm for the subject ignite your own. It’s hard to actually listen to someone who is passionate about something and not walk away with at least a little interest in whatever they were talking about.

If the professor doesn’t seem enthusiastic, find someone who is, and let them persuade you to be excited to learn. If excitement is too much to muster, at least try for interested.

No matter what you decide to try, just give that class a fair chance. If you go in with a predetermined mindset of misery, of course you’re not gonna like it. But nothing can be all bad. Look for the good and the interesting, and you will find it.

Do you have a question for Kate?  Don’t shy away, ask Kate anything by sending an email to AskKateAnything@gmail.com.  If you have questions of a sensitive nature and wish to remain anonymous, your identity will be kept secret.

Kate Noah
Staff Photographer - Spring 2013 Copy Editor - Fall 2014, Spring 2014

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