Friday, 4 September 2015

Top 10 | Back To School Essentials

Hello there, 

Now that most are returning to a new year at school, college or university; the colder months will take their toll and no doubt strip students of their enthusiasm and jolly spirit. The following are a collection of additions I personally found most helpful in the past. They should hopefully provide a little comfort, ease, lift your mood and distract you from the repetitive schedules and warped, black hole of self-consciousness... Perhaps. Anyhow, on with the top 10.

1) Hand warmers. Oh yes, particularly these beauties, Hot Hands Hand Warmer, are certainly a life-saver when it comes to those chilly mornings. Look back on the days where your fingers were too numb to write during class and your handwriting looked like a drowsy sloth had written it. Admittedly, no one wants to bother having to pop the warmer into the microwave, fill a hot water bottle or pop it into a pan, but little do they realize that science has indeed advanced. Simply shake the beanbag and have your pockets nice and toasty for up to 10 hours. One of the simple luxuries of life, in my opinion. People thought I was constantly carrying teabags around in my pocket, so it was rather amusing when they discovered it was instead replacing the warmth from within my empty soul... Moving on.

2) Scarf. Anyone who knows me will understand this derives from my obsession with these long strips of heavenly material, however, they can be incredibly useful as a student. I would definitely recommend a blanket-like scarf. It will both serve its purpose to keep you warm, but also give you a lovely personal, portable duvet which you can snuggle up in at break or during a lesson in which the lights are dimmed and the class is hyped up for a period of cinematic documentary of plant cells. If you yearn to walk the catwalk, mix up your style with multiple scarves for different days. Whilst in school I had no idea what 'fashion' even meant, but who cares? As long as you feel good in such an environment you can't go wrong.

3) Flask. Since we're still on the topic of battling the icy seasons, a good mug of green tea, coffee or hot choc gives an impression of sophistication, class, and a damn good taste in beverages. Within time you'll be joining the staff room gossiping about paychecks and how the caretaker left the floor too slippy whilst sipping some Tetley. In all seriousness, something hot to warm your heart at break gives you a sense of comfort and belonging, making the strenuous days all the more manageable.

4) Personalized notebooks.  Wrapping paper, stickers, just go all out. There's nothing more satisfying that pulling out a unique, awesome, attractive jotter out of your bag during class. From experience, this essential actually brightens your day and again, makes you feel more at home. Believe it or not, education can actually be enjoyable if you put the effort in to try and make it so. Go for something pleasing to the eye, combine textures, or even adapt them to the festive period to better your spirit. (Remember to always get permission. Personalizing your own special notebooks as an addition is always an option if not.)

5) Epic Stationary. What resided in my pencil case at school is what made me loose my mind. Whenever I took a step into WHSmith, my brain exploded with excitement as I hyperventilated. Similar to the notebooks, little aspects such as funky erasers and quirky ball-point pens improved my life as a student. There are some frankly hilarious stationary out there, so it would be sure to give you a giggle during maths when you pull out your crazy, vibrant, splodge-shaped calculator in maths as I did. (Do be weary of attaining the 'stationary goddess' reputation, as literally everyone will endlessly request to borrow your goods and you will likely never see them again.)

6) USB. A cool one. This is essential yet frequently forgotten. Without it, you are constantly emailing yourself work and reminders, whilst repeatedly misplacing Word Documents. It also makes you appear a much more sensible and reliable student, even if you opt for an eccentric memory stick, you're both wild and sure to ace ICT.

7) Tissues & Sanitizer. It may seem excessive, but if you want to get through the coming term without becoming a walking flu-bomb then it's best to take further precautions. Always have a pack of jazzy tissues at hand and be the talk of the yard, you never know when you may need them. For example, during my morning bus journey to college one winters morning, I was approached by a distressed, commendable young lady smothered in blood from clouting her nose on the slippery, concrete floor. Needless to say, my Pepper Pig tissues came to the rescue. Concerning the sanitizer, I think we all know the dreaded feeling of touching the slimy gum beneath the desk. Opt for a festive scent and proudly waltz from the classroom, clean and fresh.

8) Mints. As much as you may desire it, please for the sake of all human kind, do not bring chewing gum into school. It loses its flavor; leaves an abominable mess; on occasion looks like you have an attitude and is so boring you may as well chew soil. Instead, try out some flavorsome mints. Problem solved.

9) Brush With Mirror. Once again, this is an essential that is frequently forgotten. You'll feel prepared, mature and ready; especially after Physical Education when the entire class is hysterical over their sweaty, windswept appearance for the next class. This simple addition would save you from all matter of situations and will soon have friends running to you for styling advice when you're the only one who thought of a practical solution. (Though in my case, looking like I had a mushroom for hair didn't particularly make me popular.)

10) Mini Postcards. This is something I never had thought of and rather with I did. Whilst this blog post is bringing all sorts of memories back into my disturbed mind, I definitely don't miss the constant struggle of communication. Well, that's probably because I still struggle with it, but anyhow, I think this solution may help.You could pass a cheeky, silent message to a friend, or in much more convenient circumstances, pass a written card to your teacher at the end of class if you wish to converse something of an embarrassing nature. The seriousness of bullying often disguises itself from insecurity and fear of speaking out. A hand-written message can be one of the best ways to voice your concern and take action. Subsequently, topics such as mental health, learning disabilities and general struggles could also be passed on through this discrete method. On the other hand, why not pass your teacher a lovely little postcard thanking them for the lesson and wishing them a nice day? Teachers get stressed too, you know.

So that concludes my view on what are the top 10 back to school/ college/ uni essentials for the upcoming months. Quite a few of these get dismissed, but honestly, minute additions like these to your everyday timetable really does have the potential to turn your day around. 

To those of you beginning a new term, I wish you the best of luck and am of course sending a bundle of ginormous hugs. 


B x