The first few days at home after my School at Sea voyage were tough. I had a lot of adjusting to do: even just getting used to living in a house and following family routines again. I also didn’t really have time to relax because I had so much to take care of for school. Although I’d been prepared to expect all this, it still didn’t make it any easier! Now, after a few weeks, I am settling down, though I am still very busy catching up on school assignments.
Looking back at the School at Sea experience after a couple of weeks at home, it is difficult to explain how I feel about the trip. It was an incredible experience in which I learnt a lot about myself, and also about others. I put a lot of effort into finding the best way for me to get my work done. I now appreciate that education is a very individualised learning curve, with no universal fail-safe formula. However, the best method I discovered to be productive at sea doesn’t work as well now I`m home and have to follow the school schedule again. So, I now have to use what I learned on board to figure out the best way to work here. I need to adapt again, but hopefully not too much, and I now have the skills to be able to do this.
At the start of the School at Sea expedition I found it difficult to work productively and make plans I could maintain. It took some time to figure out how to motivate myself and complete my work. After testing out various methods, in the end I found that setting daily goals and focusing on just one or two subjects worked best. However, in the end unfortunately my grades were not as good as I would have liked and I am still a bit behind on my work, because the learning adjustment process took quite some time. This is why I have to spend the summer holiday catching up on my work. But I still think in all I did okay. My mentor says I had to find my own user manual. Learn about what works for me and when I can and cannot cope. I like that metaphor.
My main goal during SaS was to find a better way to study. And I did. But this is not all I have learnt. I also learnt a lot about working in a team, being honest about what I do and do not know, and coping with feedback from others. My next goal is to again find the best way for me to work in my new circumstances. I also intend to show more confidence in offering my help to others and asking for help if I need it.
I'm looking forward to our SaS reunion in July. Since returning home, we have all been locked in our small worlds in a sense because the coronavirus situation doesn’t allow us to travel and see each other. I have really missed the others. Because of the amount of schoolwork I need to do in order to ensure I am fully ready for next year, I haven’t found the spare time to edit the video material I shot during my trip. I will start on this as soon as possible, and I’ll update my blog as soon as I can with some of these videos. I’m looking forward to doing this and extending my newfound interest in video journalism! More from me soon.
Adjusting to home after life at sea
The first few days at home after my School at Sea voyage were tough. I had a lot of adjusting to do: even just getting used to living in a house and following family routines again. ...continue reading »
The last leg: sailing home from Bermuda to the Netherlands
I can’t believe I’m already writing a blog post for my final School at Sea leg! On the whole, the crossing from Bermuda to the Netherlands went well. ...continue reading »
Coronavirus plans: sailing homewards from Bermuda
We have travelled more than 10,000 Nm now, so by maritime tradition I could get a tattoo of two swallows! Sailing to Bermuda was fun, though it got noticeably colder as our journey progressed. ...continue reading »
Panama – Cuba: from exploring to engineering
We spent our final nights in Bocas del Toro, enjoying the pleasant warm evenings and friendly little eateries. After this short break, it was time to go north again to the last island on our Caribbean itinerary: Cuba. ...continue reading »
In photos: the world is our classroom, from Tenerife to Panama
These images give a glimpse of what it's like to be a young student balancing an academic education with international sea travel: something that is proving to be an unforgettable adventure! ...continue reading »
Self-reflection at sea: the first independent journey
We’ve made it to Panama! I wrote this entry between Dominica and Panama. In Panama, we had our first independent journey. ...continue reading »
The great crossing: Tenerife to Dominica
We have just completed our great ocean crossing from Tenerife to Dominica! As we don’t have internet connectivity at sea, I’m able to upload these posts when we dock. ...continue reading »
Onboard from Amsterdam to Tenerife
So, my adventure has begun! The first part of the journey started in Amsterdam. There were a lot of things I had to get used to: doing all the things I do at home but in a strange environment. We spent the first week in the harbour in Amsterdam, loading supplies. ...continue reading »
In photos: the adventure begins
School at Sea student Tobias Zijlstra set sail on the Thalassa on 20 October 2019. This photo gallery captures the departure from Amsterdam as the students embark on a six month adventure at sea. ...continue reading »
My SAS Story Prologue: recording my habits, goals, and skills gained
This post is the prologue to a series of six blog posts I will be writing along the way to document my journey. These posts will be summaries of a log that I write for School at Sea called my ‘SAS Story’. ...continue reading »