No Winter Break? Break the Ice Instead

Get ready for the saddest sentence in the English language: Winter break is officially over. It’s pretty easy to be bummed out about trekking through the snow and ice to get to class every day again after a month of binge-watching Netflix (I know I wasn’t the only one) and not having to worry about homework or papers.

But there is definitely a significant part of me that’s excited about starting all new classes; and with this new set of classes comes a new set of classmates. Which means it’s time to start making friends.

Now, I am self-aware enough to recognize that I am probably not the best person to be making a post about this. In fact, I could still use a lot of help in this department. But making friends, or at least acquaintances, in your classes is so important—especially when it comes to needing help with course material. I have passed many a math class through the assistance and explanations of my classmates. And it’ll make going to class seem like less of a drag if you have a few friendly faces there.

So here are a few strategies that could help break the ice (and maybe writing about them will help me to take my own advice):

• Just introduce yourself!
It could be as simple as turning to your neighbor and telling them your name. If you’re an introvert (like I am), maybe you’ll get lucky and they’ll be outgoing enough to bring you out of your shell. Opposites complement each other!

• Bond over your mutual struggles with the course material.
I think we’ve all been here—the camaraderie felt amongst a group of people who all just failed a test or did poorly on a homework assignment is strong. Use it to do better next time—together, you might be able to figure out just what you did wrong.

• Find something in common.
Whether it’s your major, the area you’re from, a hobby—chances are, there’s something! And hey, if you having nothing at all in common, you’ll probably learn something new!

These are just a few methods that might help you make friends with your new classmates. But like I said, I’m no expert on the topic. Any and all suggestions are welcome, and thanks for reading!

[Marnie Leonard is a Parkland College Student Ambassador.]

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