Five things for: Augmenting your school experience

Every month for Five Things For, one writer gives their personal recommendations for five curated items — books, movies, music, podcasts, games, and more — following a specific theme. This recurring feature is included in our printed magazine issues. 

1. LifeRPG

  • Mobile app     
  • Habit making     
  • Geek love 

To those who find it hard to form good daily habits, never fear, the app LifeRPG has a (wonderfully geeky) solution. It gamifies life, allowing users to earn points and level up by completing real-life tasks. It’s a lot easier continue on with the daily grind if you view it as, well… grinding for XP. LifeRPG is also very customizable; users can set their own goals and rewards.

2. Stuff You Missed In History Class

  • Podcast     
  • History for millennials

For those on the lookout for new podcasts, a great one to start listening to is Stuff You Missed In History Class. Whether the subject is spooky, abandoned ghost ships or the creation of Wonder Woman, current hosts Holly Frey and Tracy V. Wilson are delightful tour guides through the wacky annals of history. Plus, listening to the podcast makes for really informative procrastination.

3. Sarah Kay and Phil Kaye

  • YouTube series     
  • Spoken word 

Online artists Sarah Kay and Phil Kaye are not only great poets and collaborators, but they are also great friends. Their spoken word poetry (easily found via quick YouTube search) is both carefully crafted and emotionally raw. The pair has no better introduction than their poem, “An Origin Story,” an adorable tale of how they met during the first week of university.

4. xkcd

  • Webcomic     
  • #relatable 

xkcd, a popular webcomic run by Randall Munroe, covers everything from math to pop culture to relativity to just the universe in general. So while it may be difficult to enjoy a number-heavy math or stats class, some solace may be found in this webcomic. The comic’s storylines are a mere one page long, making them a good alternative to browsing social media before class starts.

5. Texts from Jane Eyre

  • Book     
  • A good laugh     
  • Alt-history 

There is only one true recourse from the  lengthy reading lists of university: Texts From Jane Eyre. Author Mallory Ortberg rewrites classic literature as hilarious and irreverent text conversations.  Why was Marius late to the barricade in Les Miserables? Why is Hamlet so angsty? Read Texts From Jane Eyre to find out. At the very least, it’s shorter than Dickens.

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