Dear younger me,
During this time I know that you feel very worried about what’s happening in Sixth Grade. You’re worried that the work would continue being very difficult and that you wouldn’t have time to play video games. I know you’re shy and don’t want to talk to others, but you should be happy instead. Yes, homework would be more difficult; and yes, you would spend less time playing video games. But. As you grow older, these things will become more recurring, and you won’t be able to converse with your old classmates anymore. So I would advise you to enjoy sixth grade as much as you can.
The reason your future self is writing you a letter is because later in Eighth Grade, you would earn a scholarship called the Daniel Murphy Scholarship through your hard work on 500-word essays and 30-minute interviews. I bet you wouldn’t believe this because you and I know we weren’t big fans of writing in Sixth Grade and we very bashful. You would then participate in a summer program led by the Daniel Murphy Scholarship Fund. In this program I learned a two very good strategies that I wished I would’ve known during Sixth Grade. These strategies are used for time management on your homework and I would recommend you using them before you start slacking off on your homework. These strategies are called, “Backward Planning” and “Staying in Quadrant #2.”
“Backward Planning” is a time management strategy in where you construct a schedule,(like the day and amount of time),for your homework backwards, or from due date to the day the homework was given. This strategy can help you be less overwhelmed by the amount of homework you would have because it would give you an idea on how long you’ll take on your assignments, but it will also keep you away from those all-nighters you have been taking. This strategy can be used by anyone, but it will only be used properly if you would take time out of your day and schedule your homework assignments. The reason I would recommend this strategy for you is because during my sixth grade experience, I would be so overwhelmed by the homework given, that I would procrastinate. This would always make me feel stressed out on the day before it was due, and make me feel very anxious from what the outcome of my work would be. I would then had to face the consequences of procrastination by pulling off all-nighters almost every single week and rarely get any sleep. An example of this causing big problems for me was when, I procrastinated and did the homework on the day before it was due. By the time I was finished with my work, I was feeling exhausted of writing, and when I looked at the time. The clock said 2:56 AM, so I instantly went to sleep, but on the next day of school I was feeling very sluggish and was drowsing off the whole Social Studies period. At one point I fully fell asleep but luckily some of my classmates woke me up, and thanks to their decision of waking me up.I started to focus more on the lesson, and thankfully I was able to get a good grade on the homework and not let my grade drop down badly. So I hope you follow this time management strategy that could help you not procrastinate, and be able to have a weekend full of freetime. You would be able to have fun playing video games with your friends, and being able to sleep longer amounts of time without worrying about any homework.
The second time management strategy is “Staying in Quadrant #2.”This strategy explains that there are 4 quadrants, each of these quadrants each explain how we spend our time. The main idea of this strategy is to always make you build a habit of prioritizing your important, but not urgent, tasks. So being in Quadrant #2 is the best option you could have out of all the quadrants, because of this main idea. Examples of this could be setting up everyday goals, or making a schedule for yourself. I know you have have used more of your time playing video games, watching YouTube videos, and playing outside, instead of doing your homework. You have have been treating those activities like if they were more urgent and important than your homework. I know you want to have fun and avoid homework overall, but even if you argue that you would have less time to do fun things in the future, in which you are correct, you still have to keep in mind that there will always be a time and place for everything. So being in Quadrant #2 can really help you solve this problem with your habits of treating other things as more important and urgent then your homework. Overall Quadrant #2 can give you positive benefits, and if you would practice this strategy everyday. You would form good and positive habits that would help you in the future and prevent you from procrastinating. This would also give you much more opportunities to be able to converse with Anthony, Edgar, and Ivan. Because as I mentioned before, once you get older you will have less time to converse with them and even play video games with them. You would miss their jokes that always made you laugh, and their lighthearted nature that would always make each day full of positivity for you. So I would advise to start using this strategy because then you would be able to have more time to converse with them, play video games with them, and keep hearing their funny jokes. So I hope you follow this second time management strategy.
I know this was very overwhelming, but if you paid attention. You would have great advice from your future self and you would have at least two good time management strategies, which would help you create good and positive habits that will come in handy later on in life and you would stop procrastinating. So I would advise you to start to use these strategies right now, even if it’s a bit difficult at first, just continue trying. I hope that with these strategies, you will have a better experience with your homework during Sixth Grade. Always remember, be yourself and never give up.
Alfredo Barron – De La Salle Institute – DMSF Class of 2026
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