Oct. 30, 2020

Strategies to Avoid Procrastination

By Mrs. Ginn

As a former master procrastinator, I can identify with the challenges of waiting until the last second to complete an assignment.  The stress that ensues can be a reason people look to others’ work for inspiration, but that can be a slippery slope to plagiarism. Instead, plan ahead!

Let’s say you’ve checked your course map and you know a big project or essay is coming up in 2 weeks. The first thing you should do to avoid waiting so long that you’re struggling to finish it and tempted to plagiarize, is schedule it. Look at the assignment and give yourself tasks to make it less intimidating. I’m a big fan of marking things off as I go so even the biggest assignments are broken into manageable milestones. Be sure to schedule time in to complete the assignment, don’t let birthdays or other demands on your time surprise you and tempt you to plagiarize.  Put it in your calendar, whatever type you use whether that’s a paper one, your phone’s app or google calendar. Then, break it down into steps if the curriculum doesn’t already. For example, in economics we complete a budget project (it’s totally my favorite and I hope it will be yours!).

For the budget project, the first step is choosing a career then you share 12 expenses.

Step 1: choose a career.

Step 2: look up and record salaries for your chosen career.

Step 3: decide where you want to live and look at the average rent or mortgages in that city.

Step 4: look into the cost of utilities for your chosen location.

Step 5: look at your phone bill or ask how much your phone costs each month if you don’t already know.

Step 6: brainstorm other expenses that are important to you.  Maybe that’s a Disney annual pass or Netflix or Amazon prime membership or perhaps the cost of having a pet.

Step 7: is writing your summary.

Step 8: is turning it in to Turnitin.com this is a really important step and is a tool to remind you of the importance of creating your own work. And making sure that only you get credit for all your hard work.

This can be adapted to any assignment!

If you have trouble with the Turnitin.com process reach out to your homeroom or content teacher as they’re always here to help.  The great part about planning it out is you can meet your goals or exceed them! And it’s way less stressful and time consuming to complete these small tasks. You might even get on a roll and complete more than originally intended and turn it in early.

Ignoring them doesn’t mean they go away, so go ahead and complete these tiny steps to take you on the path to success. Attending live sessions or watching recordings can also be extremely helpful. Teachers are happy to discuss these big assignments and make sure the requirements are clear. I promise you can stop being a procrastinator. It is possible—I wrote this article 5 days before it was due. And this is coming from someone who used to start papers the night before the deadline!