Written by Jerry He
As this was my first time attending the Duanwu Dragon Boat Festival, many of the things we did were new to me. With the help of my fellow REACH and friendly CHARGE members, I was able to learn the basics of rowing. During the races, there was a friendly, competitive atmosphere and that made the races extremely fun and exciting. Additionally, I was able to learn quite a bit about the traditions of the dragon boat festival through the many trivias and games we played. Throughout the event, I met a lot of new faces and connected with many different people. Overall, the Duanwu Dragon Boat Festival was an amazing experience and I look forward to attending it in the years to come.
Written by Tammy LeVan
The Duanwu festival was a interesting and cool experience. It was a great opportunity to learn about parts of Chinese culture like Dragon Boat. At the festival, I learned how to paddle and ended participating in a fun race. I also got to try some delicious sticky rice and play a rock-paper-scissor game with water. Overall, it was a fun experience that allowed me to try new things and meet new people. I would definitely go to this again!
Written by Rebekah Joe
Although I have volunteered at many REACH events over the past few years, I recently attended the Duanwu Festival for the first time. Through the festival, I paddled for the first time, ate zhongzi, played games, met new people, and got to hear about the history and story behind the festival. I enjoyed being able to finally paddle and race after watching REACH paddle numerous times. The festival was a great experience for me as a new paddler to not only see how Dragon boat works, but also to see how I needed to improve to join the REACH Dragonboat team. Overall, the Duanwu Festival was a great experience, and I look forward to attending more!
Written by Justin Chu
Misallocating my time. Because of this, I’ve stretched myself too thin on extracurriculars and did not allocate enough time to effectively prepare for my classes. This was a major issue I had not only during senior year but throughout high school. Sophomore year I had my first major GPA drop because I did not have the stamina to keep up with my academics along with marching band/Wind Ensemble and being part of a conference planning committee. It will only diminish as I was not willing to let go of my extracurriculars. As a result, I graduated high school with a 2.78 GPA and did not receive my IB Diploma. Despite my poor academic performance, I was fortunate enough to be accepted to UCF by the recommendation of my Guidance Counselor.
I needed to make up for my failure back in high school. From the beginning of freshman year, I learned how to utilize my calendar to time block my day, practice deliberately studying for 45 mins increments and taking 15-minute breaks in between. Through trial and error, I was able to build up my academic foundation and manage my extracurriculars/internships more effectively.
To the students entering their senior year or advancing a class in high school, start valuing your time more. Consider your opportunity cost when deciding on your next task. Once you have a better grasp of your time, enjoy your high school experience. Enjoy not having any serious obligations and find something that will bring you joy. If you can’t find what brings you joy, actively searching for your passion counts. Have something that makes you so good that people can't ignore you. And if you end up graduating poorly like me, it’s not the end of the world. Post-high-school will be an opportunity to reinvent yourself. It’s honestly what you make out of it at the end of the day, and the dividends will show.
Written by Sarah Joe
Writing a college application is probably the last thing you want to do when you’ve already written countless essays and studied an insane number of hours for standardized tests. But fantastic applications make the job easier for the admissions officers, get you scholarship money, and force you not to slack off your senior year (oh, and did I mention getting you into college?). That being said, here are a few things I found helpful when coming up with my application.
Written by Joanna He
My advice to you
Hello! My name is Joanna He and I will be sharing some tips and tricks that might help you better prepare yourself for junior year. First off, I’d like to mention that what they say about junior year, is true. Yes, it will be your hardest year in highschool and yes it can be VERY stressful. There are multiple factors to junior year that you need to keep in mind and in fact, they all actually connect with one another.I’ve definitely learned a lot throughout my junior year, so these words of advice are actually based on my own personal experiences.
One key point that I have to mention is to NOT PILE SO MANY AP/IB CLASSES ONTO YOURSELF UNLESS YOU KNOW YOU CAN HANDLE IT!!! Trust me, I know this from personal experience. Last year, I thought that I could handle 4 AP classes, but in reality, it was way too overwhelming. Don’t get me wrong, I do know people that are fully capable of taking multiple AP classes and do perfectly fine. Just know what you can handle. Taking a lot of AP classes won’t mean anything if you don’t pass them, so make sure you’re aware of what to expect from each class.
SAT help or help in general
This category, in general, is one that I struggled with the most. When you are a junior, there are 2 things that are very important. Number 1: Maintain a good GPA and number 2: Getting a good SAT/ACT score. Different people study in different ways. There are some people who start prepping for these exams as early as their freshman year. But, there are also people, like me, who don’t start until about half way through their junior year. ( I do not recommend this haha.. It didn’t turn out well and is now haunting me) Regardless on whichever method that you choose, I HIGHLY recommend getting that extra help if you need it. When people tell you to study for the SAT, they tell you to take multiple practice tests but what they don’t tell you is that the SAT is not material based, it’s knowing HOW the test is structured. A lot of students find it more beneficial to study by themselves with a practice book. However, for me, I preferred having someone who was experienced in taking the SAT help me. Every time my mom asked if I needed an SAT tutor, I said no, simply because I didn’t want to look dumb in front of my friends or looked like I needed the extra help. As my junior year was coming to an end, I started to realize that I have not started studying, my score stayed the same and I was applying to colleges soon. That’s when it hit me that I needed to get help. My mom and I did some research on a couple of different places that I could go to and found one that had everything I needed. Ever since I finally reached out and got the extra help that I needed, I started to see some progress. I took a practice test and noticed that my score increased by 200 points!! If you think that you need help on the SAT or just your classes in general, reach out and get the help that you need!! Ultimately, this is your future you are building so don’t feel ashamed if you need a little extra help than your friends.
Above everything make sure you sleep!!!
Whether you are completing an assignment you put off or simply lost track of time doing homework, always make time for you to sleep! Sleeping is especially beneficial to students as sleep helps restore energy that we can use the next day. A good night's sleep also helps your body to fight off common infections by releasing key hormones while you sleep. Some tips and tricks I have to help achieve a good night’s sleep is to practice your time management, try to avoid having all nighters, don’t take naps during the day, and don't leave all of your assignments for the weekend to complete them all. Most of these things that I just listed I’m guilty of haha. BUT, I don’t want you guys to ruin your sleep schedules. Sleep is important!!! I hope this helps you guys! Junior year will be the toughest year yet for most people and you will feel like giving up at times but just remember that even if you fail, as long as you gave it your all, that’s truly what matters the most. Good luck! You’ll do great sweetie! :)))
Written by Timothy Nguyen
Junior year is going to be your hardest year in some shape or form. Mentally, physically, emotionally, even schedule wise it will be your most challenging year yet. Junior year is the last year colleges look at for admissions, everything you've done up until this point, slack or shine, has come to one big battle royale of a year. However, as much as academics are important this year, its just as important to make sure you do some cathartic activities as well. If all you do is academics, you will pull yourself apart faster than a lvl 5 hurricane would tear a palm tree out the very ground its rooted in. What do I mean by cathartic? Do something you've always wanted to, workout, draw, make a video, go to a theme park, do something other than school when the stress is at an all time high. Of course hold your academics above all else, but make sure you take care of yourself too!
Start looking into your future, I know it's scary at times, especially if you're not sure what you want to do yet, but just start looking. You must look before you find. College, careers, artistry, travel, whatever the case, start thinking now, start planning, because if you start later you're already at least a year behind where this lightning fast world expect you to be.
SAT and/or ACT
Take it as many times as possible. Prepare for it now other than later. Ask your counselor (or maybe a counselor) if you're eligible for free SAT or ACT tests.
Take all your classes seriously, whether it be IB, AP, Honors, Regular or Intensive, be resourceful and smart. Work smart not hard.
If you haven't already, join a club or sport! This can be one of your cathartic things and it can also give you that push towards an interest or a little extra kick you need for college. Clubs are a great way to meet people and help you be resourceful.
Calm down! Stop taking everything so seriously and enjoy high school! You’ve only got 4 short years to take it all in. Life will be stressful at times, but the best thing we can do is try our best and learn from the mistakes we make! Go out and make a name for yourself! Stay strong, you’re gonna do beautifully.
Written by Alex De Guzman
Junior year, a frightening year for some and an exciting year for others. Junior year is one of the most crucial years where your academics should be taken seriously, as college begin to look at you. So here’s some tips to help you rising juniors take on junior year.
Plan everything out, as far as a month ahead. Try to figure out what next month is going to look like, whether it’s family events, birthdays, or big projects. Having everything set out in front of you helps you have an outlook as to where your focus should be for upcoming events. Knowing what’s coming up for you helps you not stress out because you already know what’s going to happen and trust me, stress comes around a lot during junior year.
Learn to balance academics and school with relaxation. Yes, it’s important to focus on academics and making sure you pass classes. But going out with some friends every once in a while helps relieve stress that’s put on your body from school. I’m not saying go out every week or study everyday, but just have a general sense of when you need to study and when you need to spend time with friends to help relieve stress.
Lastly, enjoy junior year! As scary as the word, “junior year” sounds for some, it’ll be a great time. You’re almost done with high school, which is horrible for some people to know but it helps to know you’re almost there. Go out and have fun, explore new things that you’ve never done. School is important, but let it take over your life, so don’t forget to have fun!
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