Uh-oh, winter break is almost over. 

The stack of holiday homework seems to be getting bigger on your desk. The to-do list enthusiastically penned two weeks ago is now a mess of red ticks and empty boxes. The list never seems to end. 

IT'S OKAY. 

*deep breaths*

Heck, it's normal. 

We've all been in this situation where periods of zombie-like procrastination hampers our productivity.

Mindless scrolling through Facebook, Instagram, Tumblr feeds. 

Watching a movie/a whole season of *insert name of favourite show* STRESSFULLY. 

(I am telling that kind of guiltiness is the worst. We have a dose of medicine for getting motivated though. ;) 

Now, let's focus on one subject, in particular, English! 

The start of Term 3 marks the half-way mark of the year!! 

WHOO, Year 12s, you're almost there. Show VCAA what you're made of. And more importantly, show yourself how brilliant and golden you are. So, keep going. 

Year 11s, don't feel daunted by the prospects of next year. Enjoy this year and dream big. Oh, and don't be afraid to make mistakes in your essays or sacs. 

July also means NEW texts for all English students. That means, there will be an impending exploration of a whole new universe. A new realm of characters, tragedy, oh-so-angsty relationships and lexicons are awaiting you! 

To be completely honest, it can be daunting to start a new novel. Knowing that the whole purpose of reading it is to write 900- word essays and notes can be off-putting. At the same time, we know these texts are VCAA approved and prescribed by our schools. In general, I do think we have a great selection of novels and literature to study. However, everyone has their individual tastes in genres. School curriculum cannot always fully accommodate the idiosyncratic nature of what we like and dislike as students. 

So, when you start to think about HOW to analyse the text or how you are going colour-code quotes according to the 12 different themes, pause for 2 seconds. 


It is great that you are already thinking on how to annotate your novel, but, set your pen and pretty highlighters down. 

Momentarily. 

Step away from the desk, make yourself your favourite drink, sit in your favourite place and begin.

Start reading.

Try to dissociate reading novels from study. 

Study is practically synonymous with dark circles, eye bags, stress, rewards and high expectations. 

So, sit back and immerse yourself into the universe deliberated crafted by the author. 

The attitude we give to our subjects will greatly impact the end product of this academic journey. 

Thus, when reading the prescribed novel, give a little sass, wit and curiosity to it. Justify why you dislike the book or the characters. Find the many instances of how Character A is a malevolent, opportunistic schemer, etc. Alternatively, if you thoroughly enjoyed the text, give a little love! And do the same! 

- Amanda  

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