Schooled: Welcome back, now, get motivated!


Photo by Daisy Draper

The last day of school is May 21, 2014. There are 40 more school days until then!

By Daisy Draper, staff writer

By the time you read this, Spring Break will officially be over. No more sleeping in or spending all day at the beach. No more late nights on Tumblr or watching movies.

Thursday, March 26, is the start of our second week of the fourth and final quarter this school year. It’s time to get motivated!

I tend to slack off in the fourth quarter, and I’m willing to bet that you do too. Well, I don’t want that to happen to me–again–this year.

I know what you’re thinking: “Easier said than done,” right?

But, I’m ready for you. Here are three handy ways to get some motivation so that you can finish the year strong:


In Creative Writing, we are writing novels. We started on February 28, and on March 28, we’re all supposed to have 50,000 word novels. That’s a lot of words. I was dreading it, but by using some of the “onerosity coupons” in my No Plot? No Problem! Novel-Writing Kit, I was able to keep adding words, and more words, and more words.

The cards work basically like this:

  1. Set a goal, like, “I will pass my math test with an 80% or higher grade,” or, “I will turn in all my homework on time this week.”
  2. Write the goal on an onerosity coupon.
  3. On the coupon, also write a task that you promise to do for another person if you fail to meet your goal by the date you set. The tasks could be buying someone food or doing dishes for a week. The idea is to make it something you would not want to do so you are motivated to get your work done.
  4. Give the coupon to the person that you’re going to do the really awful task for and make that person responsible for checking on you.
  5. With an onerous chore as a consequence and a support system in the form of your friend or family member, aka onerosity coupon keeper, you will be extra motivated!

These cards got me a lot of words, and I did not have to do one task I said I would do. Even though I used it to get through my novel, this method can be helpful with any school work. Just make your own cards, find people who would really gloat about you doing stuff for them, and get to work!


I recently read a story about a teacher in Belgium who had read all of the Game of Thrones books. He threatened his noisy students with listing all of the Thrones characters who die in the third book. Since the majority of his class watches the HBO series, the students quickly became quiet.

With the fourth season of Game of Thrones starting on April 6, find someone who has read the books and give them permission to tell you the fate of one character every time you fail to do your homework. If you’re not a big Game of Thrones fan, this can work for a show you’ve recorded on your DVR or a movie that you haven’t seen yet. All you need is a willing assistant.


An article in Forbes titled 17 Ways to Motivate Yourself to Do Great Things had a lot of cool ideas. Yes, it’s written for business owners and managers, but there were some great suggestions in there that work just as well for high school students, like “consider the alternative,” “don’t get in your own way,” and “keep score.”

The idea I liked was number two, which suggested gathering and surrounding yourself with quotes. Get an inspirational quote, and post it somewhere you will see it every day. The article has a link to inspirational quotes if you need help finding some. If you keep reading it, you can start to believe it, and when you believe in yourself…well…I don’t want to sound like one of those quotes — just go check them out.

So go get motivated! I know we are just finishing up Spring Break, but summer will be here before you know it. Work hard now, and finish the year strong.