Ask a Panther: Week One

Here are this week’s questions:

“What advice would you give to incoming students on how to handle stress while at SAA?”

Thanks so much for this question! I was actually really looking forward to answering this because our school just had auditions this Saturday Feb. 23rd! I’m sure there were a lot of nervous future freshmen and hopefully this answer will be of some help. Stress in high school is inevitable. Between studying for tests and having a social life, it’s a tough thing to balance. One main thing I want to highlight about handling stress that I, myself, have found to be really helpful is to remember that: grades don’t measure what you’ve learned. I’m not saying don’t try at all. Making good grades is important and SAA really encourages your best academic performance. What I want the readers to understand is that school is for learning. Whether it’s academics, relationships or sportsmanship, school is a place where we are supposed to learn all three (and more) and grow. And grades can never accurately define that. Of course you should always strive for the highest but it’s important for us to reflect on what we’ve actually gained from our experiences in school. SAA is a place for growth and advancement both in academics and personal character. Remember that you are you and grades don’t define your worth. Don’t compare yourself to anyone else either because I understand that this happens a lot. Just being able to make it through all the auditions and academics requirements show that you are MORE than enough. Will you face stress? Yes, definitely, there’s no doubt. But are you alone on this? No. We’re all going through this rollercoaster of high school together. Should you allow this stress to consume you? No! Work hard and keep up with your schoolwork, but also have fun! If you’re still struggling, take a break. Go for a walk, or a run. Sing or dance away your thoughts. Give yourself some time to think some things through. Rearrange your priorities, what’s important? What isn’t? Talk to your friends about what you’re feeling, or talk to your teachers. Teachers are more understanding than you think; it’s okay to feel stressed at times, but it’s all natural and you just have to keep reminding yourself that it’s okay.

“Do you think our lives during high school should be centered around solely education and studying or building relationships with people and having fun? I know a balance is good, but which one should prevail?”

Honestly, I think it’s impossible to choose either side. Whether it’s education or building relationships, I feel like they go hand in hand. The difference is in how you handle or perceive the two. Education and studying, as boring as it sounds, is necessary for preparing for college. High school seems bad now but college could be worse if we’re not prepared! We aren’t defined by numbers nor the letter grades that accompany them but whether we like it or not, this is a system that we must go through. However, I do think that education can be fun. Overall, it’s based on the attitude you carry yourself with. If you convince yourself that a class is going to suck before you even give it a chance, then it’s probably going to. Try to take some interest in what you’re learning. Ask questions, be engaged. This way, you can also build relationships with your teachers and develop better habits. Movies portray high school as a place where students should just always have fun, but you don’t have to choose between work and fun. It can be both! I’ve always enjoyed school because I could see my friends, and lunch is always such a party. I might not always like the classes I’m in but building relationships and finding ways to have fun with other people in those classes help me get through them! Think of it this way: if you get too consumed with school, you’re going to hate it more; if you have too much fun, you fall behind in school and you won’t be able to have more fun. I know you didn’t want me to call for a balance but there isn’t one side that can win. School by definition is for learning and it’s not always going to be a fun time. And in certain perspectives, that’s just life.

“How to get over a bad test”

You’re not going to like this: delete PowerSchool.
It sucks. You studied all night and you followed all the YouTube tutorials on note taking. You even limited the screen time on your phone, yet here you are. That test was just awful and I mean bad. There’s no way you can recover from this right? Wrong. You’ll be fine. It’s fine! A little bad test, so what? Don’t let your guard down. Prepare for the next one. Don’t let this test keep you from rocking the next one. Just one thing, delete PowerSchool. Trust me, I’m speaking from personal experience. If you keep looking at that bad grade, you’re just going to keep being discouraged. Remind yourself that you’re better than this, you are capable of so much more than this mere little test on the Gilded Age or the Unit Circle. You got this. You’re not just any ordinary student, you’re a Savannah Arts student! If you couldn’t do It, you wouldn’t be here. If you weren’t capable of recovering from a test and doing better on the next one, you wouldn’t be here. You’re in one of the top high schools, you’ve got this! Keep your head up and focus on what you could have done better and think of how you’re going to ace the next test. Go get them bud.

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