Saturday, 20 September 2014

Student Study Hacks*

Hello! It's been a while since I've done a little post about my part-time PGCE. I started the course at York St John's university in March and so far I'm really enjoying it. I completed my first school placement in June and achieved a 'good' teaching standard which I am really proud of considering I often lacked confidence and felt like I would never be able to teach a whole class. 

I start back at University next week and will be juggling working part time as well as university and my school placements so I've taken some time out from blogging recently to catch up on my university working before I go back, including my first Masters level assignment, scary! 

I thought I would take this opportunity to share with you some of my student study hacks as I was kindly sent some goodies from to help me study, as well as some yummy treats! Viking offer a wide range of stationary at really affordable prices, perfect for a student budget! 

Student Study Hacks

Create a timetable! I know this might seem tedious, your are no longer in secondary school but it can be really useful. Write in lectures, work, social time, family time and time to study. I find it useful to write in what subject I'm going to study because otherwise I spend way too much time on one subject and others get neglected. 

My Palgrave Student Planner is my best friend! This little planner is packed full of pages every student needs; to do lists, diary, timetables, assignment deadlines, book lists, library book loans, useful websites and much more. I mainly use the diary for writing down all the university work I have to do, splitting it up into easy to manage chunks through the week. 

Study hard and play hard! 
 I know its easier said than done, when that dreaded assignment deadline is looming and you've not even started right?... but if you don't let go and relax occasionally, you will only become so wound up about it that the work you do will not be up to your usual standard and silly mistakes will occur.  I often struggle with the work/life balance but if I find myself yelling at my MacBook screen I know its time to save my work, shut down and go and unwind! 

Post-it Notes
I love using Post-it Notes to leave myself little reminders and the joy is they can be stuck almost anywhere you need them, in folders, on the fridge, doors or notice boards. 

Book Flags
I love these little book flags! They are perfect for highlighting or marking text in books and tagging pages for future reference. I find coloured flags really useful if I am doing some reading for an assignment as I can tag different sections of a book with different colours for each subject or topic. 

Pukka Pad's 
Another one of my student favourites is the Pukka Project Pad. The sectioned off parts of the pad are really useful for different subjects or modules as it means I don't have to carry around four or five different notepads and all my notes are in one handy place. 

Colour Coding 
I love the Uni-Ball Signo Gelstick pens, they make my handwriting look so much neater and the different colours are useful for writing assignment plans and taking notes in lectures. I have Dyslexia and find colour coding my notes such a useful study technique. 

Tipp Ex
Tipp Ex is a must have item in my pencil case. I often make so many mistakes taking lecture notes and hate crossing out. My favourite is the Tipp Ex Micro Tape Twist Correction Tape, I simply glide the tape over the writing I want to erase and write over it, no more waiting around for the foul smelling correct fluid to dry! 

Student Support Services
Student Support has been a real blessing for me. Whilst studying for my BA I was put in contact with student support and assigned a mentor to ensure I did not fall behind with my studies because of my Arthritis. However, in my final year I was assessed and told I had Dyslexia! It was a massive help as I finally understood why I have been struggling and always needed to study harder than my friends to get anywhere near the grades I wanted. I would urge anyone who is struggling with their workload to book an appointment with the Student Support Services at your university, they have a wide range of ways to help you from mentoring to study workshops. 

Be Active!
I recently joined a gym and its the best thing I've ever done! It has given me so much more energy, not just physically but mentally and this has meant I can concentrate better on my studies! I've also found because I don't feel as drained all the time I can handle my busy lifestyle better. Another bonus is the hour I have at the gym just working out and not focusing on work or university. 

I hope you find these little hacks as useful as I have! 

Disclaimer: Stationary and treats provided by Viking ( Although these items were sent for review, my opinions are my own and 100% honest (Excludes Post-it Notes and Palgrave Student Planner). Full disclaimer

Claire Louise Xx


Thursday, 4 September 2014

Home Sweet Home #2

Hello! Ian and I have finally decorated our bedroom in our new flat! Here are some photos of what the finished room looks like. I'm so happy with how it looks I went a little crazy taking photos! 

Here's a list of where I got everything from. Some of the bits were given to us as wedding gives and others we bought so long ago I can't remember how much I bought them for: 

Green Botanical Shadow Wallpaper - £10
Multi Photo Frame - £10.50 Matalan. 
Decrorative Lights - £6 Primark. 
Waffle Kingsize Duvet Set - £25
Cream & Green Pleated Cushions - 2 for £10
Cream & Green Floral Cushion - £7 Wilko. 
Quilted Reversible Throw - £15
Ceramic Lamps - £4 each
Wooden Smile - £2
Straw Waste Paper Bin - £5
Houndstooth Cat Doorstop - £8
Split Wood Laundry Basket - £6
Overdoor Mirror - £15
Brixham Office Chair - £37.99
Bush 32" HD Ready Smart TV - £199.99
Apple TV - £79

I could not resist throwing in some pictures of Mia and Molly, so cute! I have not got around the filling the photo frames with pictures yet so I decided to use some of the left over wallpaper which actually looks really good. I also need to get some cable tidies because I hate the look of all the wires from the TV. I've really enjoyed decorating the bedroom and can't wait to start on the rest of the flat. 

Claire Louise Xx


Friday, 29 August 2014

Mavala Cyclades Blue

Mavala Nail Colour Cream (Cyclades Blue) - £4.75 Boots

Previous nail polish brands I have purchased really let me down, with ridiculously thick formulas as they all claim to be the 'perfect one coat salon nail'. The trouble is these thick formulas just end up being heavy and sticky making them a total nightmare to apply. 

Mavala is one of my all time favourite nail polishes! The texture of the varnish is so smooth and light its a piece of cake to apply. I apply one or two coats depending on the colour and I achieve perfect nails! The little application brush is great for getting up close without polish ending up all over my fingers. Drying time is not too shabby and the finish is so shiny. I get a good three or four days of chip free nails and if I want them to last longer I simply add a good clear topcoat for extra protection. This is really good considering I am the clumsiest person I know and I'm always catching my nails on things. 

Cyclades Blue is such a pretty bright blue colour! I was a little nervous at how bright it looks in the bottle but once I had it one my nails I fell in love with the bold colour. Once I removed the polish I was impressed to see it had not stained my nails at all and was really easy to remove with acetone free nail polish remover. Cyclades is a really nice colour for Spring/Summer and I would really recommend it! 

What's your favourite brand of nail polish?

Claire Louise Xx