As its coming around to deadlines and exams, it is important to ensure you make time for yourself! We all know the stresses at this time of year, especially with the run up to Christmas (I bet you all can’t wait to be baking mince pies and gingerbread non-stop!). So, in order to make sure you’re all looking after yourselves here are my top 10 tips to relax during exam season:
1. Drink plenty of water – I know it may seem silly but when you’re fully hydrated your brain is working at its full potential meaning you will stay focused better.
2. Get some sleep – I know with studying and finishing off deadlines it’s easy to have a cup of coffee until 3am but trust me, the lack of sleep is not worth it. Try and get into a good routine, having at least 8 hours of sleep a night
3. Make a list – if you’re feeling stressed out, make a list of everything you need to get done in order of priority and tick off each one as you go.
4. Take a bath (or shower!) – A nice relaxing bath will take all your stresses away (and give you time to catch up on Netflix).
5. Go on a walk – if you ever feel overwhelmed take yourself out of that space and go on a walk outside. It’ll distract you and put everything into perspective.
6. Talk to someone – if you ever feel like your mental health is low or you’re just feeling very overwhelmed its important that you talk to someone. Whether its your parents, grandparents, teacher or friend just let everything out and maybe they can help your and give you some advice.
7. Start early – I know its easy to say ‘oh I’ll start it next week’ but the sooner you start revising and writing your assignments, the better! This gives you more time to prepare and make your assignments the best they can possibly be.
8. Take a break – whether its regular breaks during a study session or a day in bed, it’s important to take a break to let your brain have a break. After your break you’ll feel refreshed and ready to carry on!
9. Exercise – just 30 minutes of exercise a day can relieve stress while keeping you fit and healthy! It all works together to keep your brain functioning at its best.
10. Eat a balanced diet – all I’m saying is don’t eat junk food 24/7. Have some fruit and veg everyday and I guarantee you’ll thank me for it.
You want to enjoy your time of study before entering the big world, by applying these tips it will ease the pressure and allow you to enjoy the modules more!
Thanks for taking the time to read this I hope its been helpful for you. Good luck :)
I would like to share my experience in competing for the last two ABST competitions.
In 2017 when I joined the London South Bank University (The National Bakery School) as a student, I was briefly told about the ABST conference. I had never entered a bakery competition before and the thought of entering one was daunting to say the least! Thankfully the third year students gave us a brief idea of what to expect and that gave me hope.
With anticipation and excitement I sat down, read the guidelines and spoke to my lecturer about the competitions I was interested in. I finally decided to enter the IBB live piping class (This is a live competition which consists of decorating 4 miniature cakes with royal icing in the space of 2 ½ hours), the Goldex Award (sugar flower category) and the Mandy Wansell Trophy (Danish Pastries category).
Over the next few months I started preparing for the great day.
I enjoyed every minute of the intense 2 ½ hours of piping and was so thrilled when I was awarded second place in the Live Piping category. Although I did not get a place in the sugar flowers and Danish pastry category, I enjoyed working on my pieces and was amazed to see such lovely exhibits by other students. I realised the standard was high and was not going to give up easily!
A year flew by so quickly and the next conference was on the horizon. Once again I started preparing for the competition and decided to enter the Blandy Cup (Wedding cake) for a change as well as the IBB live piping class and Goldex award again.
It was great fun preparing for the competitions and I had wonderful lecturers who sacrificed their time to guide me. I was privileged to have great tutors.
For the second time in a row I was awarded second place in the Live Piping category which was wonderful. Even though I was not awarded for the wedding cake category, I got a high commendation by the judges which I was really pleased about.
If I was to summarise my experience of taking part in the ABST competitions, I would say that taking part was great fun and I would encourage every student to participate because you learn such a great deal yourself, you get to meet other like minded students and you get to see such great exhibits. Practice and hard work does pay off and taking part is the main thing!
Thanks for reading.
Hey Everyone, my blog below is all about my experience at Puratos!
As students we’re always told about the importance of placements, and as a student myself I never realised the importance until I actually experienced this placement.
I was able to secure a two week placement at Puratos in Bicester. Puratos are a great company as they specialise in all of the three main sectors: bread, patisserie and chocolate. The Bicester site is well known for its innovation and new product development as it’s been the UK’s innovation centre ever since 1984.
On the first day, I was shown around the site and met the team. The site has a chocolate and patisserie kitchen dedicated to the making of all their sweet and chocolaty products and then the bread kitchen which has an array of different machinery plus a great sourdough cupboard which each member of staff is able to store their sour starters. What stood out to me was the amazing range of chocolates that were showcased in a display fridge for customers or staff to try for free!
I was then able to see how products are tested for quality and safety within the bakery, using equipment such as a water activity analyser and texture analyser.
As I was there for a full two weeks I was set up with a project all to do with vegan meringue. For the first few days I worked alongside an application specialist and was able to trial many different vegan recipes. Within the final week I worked independently and then presented my results to the team after a successful outcome. When I wasn’t working on the vegan meringue trials, I was able to assist with the test baking of certain cakes to workout shelf life and also make sourdough using three different types of sour.
Overall, I had a great experience at Puratos working alongside highly skilled people. The opportunity also opened another connection with the industry for myself and I would definitely recommend gaining experience to every student!
Bakery students from around the UK and Ireland sharing their experiences