The last year of high school and graduation is a rite of passage that some may not get to experience this year in the same way so many others have before. The uncertainty of what will happen with COVID over the course of the school year and how that will impact your experience, may be causing you a lot of angst. Many are already grieving for this lost time and the lost experiences, and while it’s certainly a sad time, there are ways to get creative and make the best of going to school virtually, ending the year strong. Here are some ideas that can help seniors make the best of going to school virtually and their last year of high school meaningful.
Shift Your Perspective
The first thing to do is shift your perspective. Shifting your perspective, may be challenging, but when coming from within you, can really change how you feel and make sense of the situation. It involves the ability to accept that while things are very difficult, in many ways they could be much worse. It may be considering the impact COVID has had on the health of people you know or hearing of losses of loved ones. Or it might be discovering how resilient you are and learning you can get through the most difficult challenges. Shifting your focus could also be an opportunity to connect in new ways with classmates or to let current friends, teachers, and family members know what they mean to you. You never know when that chance might get taken away, so let people know what they mean to you now. Get involved with any and all events online as much as you can to ward off feelings of isolation. Simply shifting your perspective to recognize what is working versus what isn’t working, can have a big impact on your outlook and your experience. Figure out what’s truly important to you, and remember that the rest is just background noise.
Learn From The Experience
This is likely going to be the only thing you see like this in your lifetime, and that makes it a learning opportunity. Not necessarily a welcomed one, but still – learning something amidst all this can help you to grow in ways that you may have not otherwise. The pandemic has already taught many people the importance of flexibility and adapting to new situations quickly. Many now also realize that nobody really knows what the future holds. Life lessons are abundant if you look for them. Learn from this experience as much as possible and carry it forward with you. Aim to remain flexible and you should be able to take on whatever life throws at you.
Take Senior Portraits
See if you can hire out or borrow a professional camera or hire a photographer to take your senior portraits. They could be formal or casual senior portraits, and you could use a backdrop or take some out in the yard. The best idea is usually to take 100 or more and then pick the best from what you have. You could even include beloved pets and family members, so that’s a plus! You’ll be glad you have some portraits to commemorate the time, even if you’ve had to arrange and take them yourself. And don’t forget to take a picture of yourself in a mask to forever document this unique year!
Create Scrapbooks and Memory Boards
Your yearbooks are likely looking empty, so why not make an effort to compile photos to create an album full of memories? Create scrapbooks or memory boards to look back on and smile. Creating collages that include items from past school events could be another way to commemorate your high school experience. Encourage your friends and classmates to do the same. When you are able to meet up, you can share your scrapbooks with one another and reminisce.