December 04, 2013

What I learned this semester

On the last day of class, I gave each of my first year students an index card and asked them to write one thing they learned during their first semester in college. Then I shuffled the cards and read them aloud.

I learned how to manage my time.

Biology exams are hard.

Tie dye is cool.

I now know why my brothers sleep until noon every day.

Due to the warming of the oceans and the higher temperatures, crabs are in Antarctic waters for the first time in 30 million years.

I learned that I have a talent for beaning people in the head in racquetball.

Even though it’s fun, you can’t cuddle all of your time away.

How to function and make decisions without relying on my parents.

How to balance a social life with an academic life.

To embrace my failures.

I learned that when you look at your schedule, you think you are going to have all this free time, but really, you don’t.

I learned how to organize my ideas and write informational papers.

I learned how to use Excel. I can make graphs and charts now!

I should never take my mom’s cooking for granted.

How to find the molarity of a solution and the limiting reactants.

How important it is not to procrastinate.

There are endless opportunities: you just need to take them!

Bottled water is evil.

Don’t experiment with Ramen or Easy Mac.

College requires a lot more independent work than high school.

You can revive a dead hard drive by freezing it.

Don’t drink in the dorms. Oh, and I learned how to use Excel.

Rabbits eat their droppings in order to fully absorb the nutrients.

You should not expect a 90 or a 100 on everything even if that is how high school was. An 85 is a good grade you should be proud of.

Teaching others helps you retain information like nothing else.

All about phytoremediation — using plants to mitigate environmental damage.

How much things cost. They are expensive.

How much I relied on my parents.

In dueterostomes, the butt comes first.

Sticky notes are a great organizational tool.

I need to start doing work when it’s assigned instead of when it is due.

I’ve learned to be open about how I feel about environment issues.

If you don’t study for biology, you will FAIL.

I learned how to do laundry. And how much easier it would have been if I’d gone elsewhere.

I learned how a plant works. That includes its functions, hormones, evolution, and many more things.

If you put off doing your work, you get overwhelmed on projects.

The cemetery is a great place for shenanigans.

The environmental impacts of hydrofracking are huge and scary.

Pinecones are leaves. Also, an octopus is flexible enough to fit through your entire intestine.

Look out for yourself. Keep friends and family close. Study harder than you think you need to.

You never know how good your family food is until you eat at a dining hall for two months and then go home for Thanksgiving.

I learned more chemistry and biology than the human brain should be able to hold. Also, it is a good idea to always have extra toilet paper handy.


a/k/a Nadine said...

Haha! These are great, as always. (Also, I still haven't learned some of these things. Quick studies, these students of yours.)

Anonymous said...

Love these.


Zhoen said...

These should all be in a book.

kathy a. said...

This is such a great assignment!

Friko said...

As mixed a bag of answers as there are student personalities.

You can tell the serious, slightly humourless apart from the flippant and jocular.

I like the ones best who combine the two.

Sarah Sometimes said...

These are always so touching. And I was going to write the same as a/k/a/Nadine: I am still trying to learn many of these things. Especially the ones that relate to procrastination.

Mary Stebbins Taitt said...

WOW! That's quite a list!!!

Teri said...

I love this list, as always.

I will say that the octopus thing is a little gross. ;-)

TiredProf said...

Love this--what a great idea!