Sage Sarah: Group Projects

Hello Friends! Yes, that’s right, I called you a friend because at this point we’re all friends whether you like it or not. You all know the drill. I’m here to throw some advice in your face that you’ll probably never use, but hey at least we had fun doing it. Or at least I did. Today we’re covering everyone’s least favorite thing, group projects. Specifically, what to do and what not to do.

1. Splitting Up The Work

You’ve reached the point in the project when you have all your group members chosen, hopefully by the students. The teacher picking groups is just the worst. You can never quite recreate the moment of sheer panic when you realize you can’t work with your best friend and the two of you have a Titanic moment. Reaching towards each other across the classroom as the other drifts further out of reach.

I’m speaking from my public school days, ye olden days of middle school and junior high when I had to actually put on normal people clothes and leave the house. It was truly a traumatizing experience. Now I’m an old lady who goes to class in penguin PJ pants, good times.

Anyway, now that you know what fellow delinquents you’ll be suffering with, you’ll have to split up the work. Everyone gets equal parts and in our dreams, everyone sticks to that plan. All is well, everyone does their part, and the sun shines down through the clouds mixing with an angel choir as you perfectly present your wonderfully laid out project.

HA! Yeah sorry bud, let me just use gravity to my advantage so you come crashing back to Earth. Try as you might, we all know someone is going to end up doing way more than their part, but go ahead and split it up anyway. Can’t hurt to dream.

2. Meeting With Your Group

Ah yes, another part of a group project that nobody wants to deal with; speaking to people you don’t usually speak to. Unless you’re one of those strange humans who’s good at social interactions (If so, teach me your ways), the best course of actions when formulating the meetup battle plan which you shall use to forge your path through this natural disaster we all know is about to ensue, create a group chat.

Add all your members, so nobody has any excuses. Don’t even try it, Janet, we all know you left us on read and we ALL saw that you were active on Facebook the entire time! Ideally, everyone will be diligent with replies and willing to meet-up either in person or in a video call. Heck, even just having a shared document that everyone can use will work if you not everyone can make it to a meeting.

And for the love of all our sanity, don’t be that person who changes the fonts and colors constantly or messes around with pictures because we might be laughing now but secretly we’re cursing your name. We just want to get this done as fast as we can so we can go binge watch Netflix, so focus!  

3. Slackers

Oh yeah, you all know what I mean by slackers. If you’ve never had to deal with one, count your lucky stars, my sweet summer child. They’re the worst! The person who doesn’t do their fair share, who waits until the last minute, who doesn’t do a good job, and just generally seem like they wouldn't be able to read the textbook if you threw it right at them.

If you are experiencing the plague of the group project slacker, tell your teacher. It’s best if you do it early on, but if you have to do it later I would suggest emailing when you hand it in. Make sure all your group members also let them know, and if you have proof it’s even better. 99% of the time, the teacher will understand and not hold it against the rest of the group.

I’ve done this myself and luckily I said something early enough that I could move to a new group. Bless my new group, they were wonderful human beings and we did such a good job. From every single person who does their fair share in group projects, DON’T BE THE SLACKER! If you’re the slacker, you’re the worst, it is confirmed by the very stars in the sky.

That’s all folks! My colorful summary on how to conduct yourself in a group project setting. It all boils down to simply not being the worst. I don’t understand the levels of disregard it takes to make other group members pick up your slack. If you expect to get full credit for doing nothing, well you’re in for a rude awakening.

It’s me, here to pull the metaphorical chair right out from under you. I’m not going to stand for it anymore, and since you’re on the floor after you tried to sit in the chair, clearly you aren’t going to stand for it anymore either. Glad we could reach this agreement. Signing off, see you non-slackers next week. Have a happy Wednesday, my dudes.