Holiday distress: ARL answers your concerns going into the winter season

Q: AP Lang is is taught entirely from a left-wing perspective. How is it possible to succeed in a subjective class, especially when you disagree with a large majority of what is being taught?
— Quiet Conservative

A: From my experience, the class is not graded based on beliefs themselves, but rather on one’s ability to interpret ideologies and analyze the rhetoric that authors use to reach their audience. You should not be graded on whether you agree or disagree with an author’s— or the teacher’s— point of view! Talk to your teacher and he or she can give you the reasoning behind choosing such passages.

Q: How should I best prepare for my midterm exams, and what is the most efficient way of doing it? Currently, I’m not doing the best in my classes, and I have no idea how to prepare.
— Midterm Crisis

A: Ask your teachers for significant topics to focus on. In the end, you can either study hard or not. There is no simple, quick way to study for exams, especially if your grades aren’t where you want them to be. It will take time and dedication in order to best prepare. In short, it just might be the right time to hunker down and study the old-fashioned way.

Q: I have a part-time job and I’m thinking about increasing my hours. But, I feel like it takes away a big portion of my time and could possibly be affecting the quality of my schoolwork. I really need the money. What should I do?
— Busy Bee

A: Your job should not be negatively affecting your schoolwork! Increase your hours during school breaks or weekends (if need be) so that they will not interfere too much with the time you have to do homework.

Q: I have two friend groups: one with people I’ve known since elementary school, and one with people I’ve gotten to know in high school. The two groups aren’t big fans of each other, yet both always want to hang out on the same days. Any advice?
— Stuck in the Middle

A: Talk to them about it. Both groups should be aware of the situation you are in, so that they understand. You will just have to choose which group to hang out with on days they both decide to meet. Create a regular way to decide, such as a schedule. Also, prioritize what you think is important or sounds fun. Don’t feel pressured to go to every movie or game night.